[TowerTalk] US Tower Cables

KJ0M kj0m at mchsi.com
Wed Nov 9 12:02:27 EST 2005

On Nov 9, 2005, K7LXC at aol.com wrote:
>>     I guess my question is why you think the cables need replacing  
>> in the
>> first place?

As an aside to this thread, just a week ago today, my TX-472 MDPL re- 
nested itself in about 3 seconds when the cable you're speaking of  
broke. I saw the whole thing happen. I was raising the tower from  
inside my house with the remote, watching it out my window. It was  
nearly fully extended and suddenly one of the cables broke and the  
tower came back down very, very quickly. It's a sickening sight to  
see, believe me! What appears to have happened is a bad weld on a  
bottom brace, holding one of the pulleys, came loose. This allowed  
the sheave to twist out of vertical and wedge the cable. The winch  
just kept pulling until a cable snapped. When the top 3 sections with  
2 Force 12 antennas hit the cement going about 20-30 mph, obviously  
the tower stopped quite suddenly. The antennas just kept going. Now,  
I've got many bent elements, a rotor that doesn't function and a  
tower that US Tower will not tell me how to re-cable. They'll sell me  
the cable set for ~$250 but won't tell me how to string it, due to  
liability issues. Luckily, the insurance carrier I have has listed  
this under my personal property, so even though it was a mechanical  
failure, they will stand by the claim. Now, I need to find someone  
that can help the adjuster determine whether it's repairable or a  
total loss. My nearest US Tower authorized repair company is in  
Wisconsin, about 300 miles away from me here in SE South Dakota. Not  
to mention winter is coming on and I don't relish all this repair  
work standing in the snow.

My cables all looked fine on my tower. There was no rust anywhere, so  
I don't know that you necessarily need to re-cable every 3 years. My  
tower is about 7 years old. There are lots of other problems that can  
and do occur with these mechanical monsters. Being able to do all you  
tower work on the ground has its distinct disadvantages!

My biggest problem is finding someone to determine how to proceed now  
that the damage is done.


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