Working with “the Godfather of tower music…”

Spam count this week:  Only two dozen idiotic messages while on the road!

Yes, boys and girls, this week found ole Sparky in Augusta, GA, home of the legendary “Godfather of Soul,” James Brown. In town to replace lightning-damaged items at the QTH of N0FBV, I thought it would be an easy work week.  But thoughts and lines from “I Feel Good” faded quickly when I saw his tower installation.  Seventy feet of 25G, but guyed very, very short–one anchor only 23 ft out from the base, and the others at 28 & 29 ft! I knew at once tramming was going to be, well, awkward, to say nothing of downright difficult.

The ole XR-5 came down, however, without incident. But then, the elements simply slid OVER the offending guy wires.  Going back up with a newly-built XR-5 was another matter.  The slope was simply too great; I had half of the ten elements underneath the guys. So, it meant numerous up/down trips on the tower, to install temporary guys, haul the beam up and over them, then climb down to set those guys, then climb back up and thread the real EHS guys behind the boom, climb down & haul the beam up and over the guy station, Et cetera….you get the idea.

Don, N0FBV, is a disabled vet, so I was relying on “the kindness of strangers,” or local hams who’d stop by to watch, observe, and help out.  There were some issues with the clutter and/or non-neatness of the installation that required attention, too. Finally, everything was resolved and I was able to get the beam in place, despite 20MPH winds that came up, making for some boom-to-mast plate U-bolt fumbling fun.

Too bad I didn’t have some time to visit more. Seems like a nice enough city….

Invited to teach at CTU this year. Speaking at Charlotte Hamfest. Invited to speak at “Ides of March” Hamfest over in TN.  Going to Orlanda in a few days, to deliver amplifer to buyer. And then there’s the tower work, which continues to come in. Who’d have guessed one could do this stuff for a living….?

stay tuned

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