[TowerTalk] Climbing Trylon Towers

ersmar at comcast.net ersmar at comcast.net
Sun Jun 4 14:44:57 EDT 2006


     A couple of comments embedded below:

73 de
Gene Smar  AD3F

 -------------- Original message ----------------------
From: "Dan Levin" <djl at andlev.com>
> I would characterize climbing Trylon Titan towers (with L shaped members and
> open U shaped legs) as somewhat less easy and comfortable than climbing Rohn
> type towers with tubular members, but not unacceptably so.  

Agreed, including the "not unacceptably so" part.

Some thoughts:
> 1) It is much harder to hold on to the legs and cross braces of a Tryon
> tower because your hand is wrapped around a thin (and thus sharp) edge,
> rather than around a tube with no sharp edges.

True.  I use soft calfskin gloves most of the time I'm on the tower, except when I need full dexterity like when applying hardware, etc., then I remove them.

> 2) It is easier to stand on the "horizontal" members because they have a
> flat top, which are wider than the round members of a Rohn type tower.

Very comfortable on that firm angle steel that supports each rotator or bearing plate.

> 3) It is harder to stand on the cross braces because there are no truly
> horizontal members, as there are on some round member towers - so your foot
> is always standing on a slope and can slip.

I usually end up with one foot or the other in the acute angle between the tower leg and a piece of angle steel.  I don't find that my foot slips all that often.  But I know I'd be in pain in that position were it not for my climbing boots.  

> 4) It is easier to work on the Trylon tower because generally speaking, they
> move around much less than Rohn type towers do (in wind and such, although
> they certainly do sway in the wind).

Agreed, but the first time atop one of these is a bit unnerving.

> 5) It is harder to attach a safety harness to a Trylon tower, because most
> typical clips aren't big enough to clip on to a Trylon's wider members.

I found this source for Y-straps and gorilla clips:  http://store.pksafety.net/fi10tirela.html .  I haven't yet but I intend to purchase one of these for use with my Petzl climbing harness.

> 6) It is harder to work on a Trylon tower because the face size changes
> (gets smaller) as you go up the tower, and so you need a different size
> positioning lanyard.  I generally use just one size, but I put it around
> just two legs when I am lower down, and around all three legs when I am
> higher up.

    I use an adjustable Buckingham cllimbing belt (http://lists.contesting.com/archives//html/Towertalk/2001-08/msg00636.html .)  I decided on a strap rather than a rope lanyard because I'm concerned that a rope will eventually become cut by the angle steel pieces of a Trylon tower.  There are no round surfaces over which a rope can slide on a Trylon.   You just have to have the proper safety equipment for the structure you're climbing, and my tower is not made of rounded elements.

> All that said, I climb my Trylon T500-72 all the time.  I do it using a
> permanently installed safety cable that runs along one face of the tower.  I
> clip an automatic following rope grab to my safety cable, and thus I don't
> have to clip and un-clip when I move around.  I also don't have to use a
> gorilla clip to fit the Trylon's larger members, because I clip on to the
> cable grab instead.  I strongly recommend the installation and regular use
> of a permanent fall protection system for hams who climb their towers.  It
> isn't expensive compared to the cost of the project, and it is _much_ safer.
> If you are going to build a Trylon in the air, rather than on the ground,
> then investing in a good harness with a "Y" safety lanyard with two large
> gorilla clips is mandatory.  I would also suggest a rope positioning
> lanyard, I think I use a 3' one and it works well.

See  http://store.pksafety.net/fi10tirela.html  for the Y-lanyard I'm gong to purchase.

>                        ***dan, K6IF
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