[TowerTalk] Tower Base Removal

w5gn at mxg.com w5gn at mxg.com
Sun Jan 19 14:10:15 EST 2014

I recall an identical sucking sound during the removal of my Ez-Way Tower Base
(the 6 inch pole with eight flanges) with water lubricant and an engine hoist
with block and tackle to the upper set of fins.

Because we had to set the engine hoist on lumber across the hole to center it,
the combination of the tension in the hoist and cable, and the tension in the
noticeably bent two planks (maybe 3x6 inches), and the release of that suction,
caused the pole to jump nearly two feet when it was finally came free.

Barry, W5GN

-----Original Message-----
From: TowerTalk [mailto:towertalk-bounces at contesting.com] On Behalf Of Roger (K8RI) on TT
Sent: Saturday, January 18, 2014 10:24 PM
To: towertalk at contesting.com
Subject: Re: [TowerTalk] Tower Base Removal

On 1/18/2014 6:11 PM, Richard (Rick) Karlquist wrote:
> On 1/18/2014 2:49 AM, Mike VE3YF wrote:
>> A wealth of information here. I will be contacting Dexpan on Monday 
>> and will order 2 boxes of their product. I will still use the hired 
>> help to
> The vendor says the concrete must have room to expand.
> This sounds exactly like what you don't have with a tower base poured 
> in undisturbed earth.  Your concrete has no rebar, but in the general 
> case with rebar, this magic stuff would certainly help, but it is 
> unclear how you would get the broken pieces (still attached by
> rebar) out of the hole.  Even without rebar, I don't see how you get a 
> hold of the pieces to lift them out.
> Good luck.

Old style post hole digger for smaller pieces. I assume there are long handled "grippers" similar to the tongs blacksmiths use.  Lots of ways to remove the stuff.  I've seen large ones that grip with the pull that could pull thousands of pounds. I have no idea as to what might be available in your area.

BTW where the suction is concerned in pulling out of moist soil. I had a post supporting a 12' dish set in maybe 10 or 12 bags of quickcrete. 
IIRC that is well less than a yard. We used a pair of 4000# engine hoists on opposite sides, with each set on a pair of  4 X 4s to lift it out.  We reached the point of a substantial bend in the arms and the concrete had not moved.  I took a garden hose and used it to drill down along side of the concrete on 4 sides.  I was near the bottom of the concrete on the 4th side when it started to move with a very loud sucking sound as the engine hoist arms straightened.  It was an easy lift after that.  The suction with the much larger base would probable exceed the weight of the concrete substantially, but by how much depends on the soil composition and moisture content.

As a side note, undisturbed soil is firm, but not solid.  It can stand a surprising amount of expansion.


Roger (K8RI)
> Rick N6RK
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