On June 10th, 2017, the K9EL DB18E was lowered to the ground, repaired/modified and then re-installed on the tower.
The Director EHU had failed and it had to be replaced. Since the Reflector EHU failed 2 years ago, I decided to replace all three motor units, plus the coax switch and the coax jumpers from the switch to the EHU's. In addition, we removed the 6m passive element supplied by SteppIR and replaced it with two passive elements custom built by K9NU. It was a very ambitious undertaking!
This project would not have been possible without the following people:
First, the team leader Paul, K9NU. Without Paul this project would not have been possible.
A special thanks to John W9ILY and Paul K9NU who stayed overnight in the area so they could start earlier on the project.
A special thanks also to Nick K9NB for hosting John at his house and being with us every step of the way and contributing some of the photos.
Jim WA9EMY was there the entire day and was the last one to leave - Jim helped with every aspect of the project (including helping me get rid of some of the beer).
The project would also not have been possible without the help of Tom K9MF and Bob N9BB. Larry, KB9L also stopped by.
And of course, the most important contributor - my wife! Celeste continues to put up with my crazy hobby, plus arranged food, drink and took many of the photos.
THANK YOU ALL!!!!!!
The heavy tower work was done by Eddie and Joe from Tower Works - http://www.towerworks.net/
Here are some photos and videos.
------ VIDEOS ARE AT THE BOTTOM OF THE PAGE -------
------- click on each photo to see a larger version of the photo ---------
STEP ONE: Lower the antenna
Joe attaching the ropes
While Joe is working hard, we are waiting for our work to begin
Joe now has the driven element separated so the antenna can come down
Close up of Joe at the top of the tower
Of course, our work is no different than road construction - one guy (Paul) holding the tag line and 5 guys watching
Yes, I was nervous!
Antenna is now officially off the tower and only held up by one rope!
Joe helping to guide the antenna around the guy wires
On the ground! We did it - no damage. The antenna takes up almost the entire back yard!
STEP TWO: Repair the antenna
First we had to remove the old motor units (EHU)
Continuing to work in the heat and sun
Tom, John, Nick and Bob working on the Director element
Not sure what John was pointing to!
The defective motor (EHU) unit which prompted this repair
STEP THREE: Re-install the antenna on the tower
We have lift-off!
On the way up - looking good so far
Almost half way up
The wind starts to catch the antenna and turn it...
Joe goes up the tower to stabilize the antenna
Oh no - another gust of wind catches the antenna and turns it the wrong way
The ground crew works hard to stabilize the antenna in the wind
Oh no! The wind completely flips the antenna.
Joe works hard to stabilize the antenna in the wind and move it into position for installation
Joe grabs the antenna and pulls in into position
He did it! Antenna in position and then secured to the mast.
Joe's final task - change out the small antenna at the top of the mast. Would you enjoy climbing a 2 inch pipe almost 90 feet in the air?
------ VIDEOS!!!! -------
Groundwork Video #1
Groundwork Video #2
Antenna Liftoff #1
Antenna Liftoff #2
Joe Climbing the Tower
Antenna nearing the top #1
Antenna nearing the top #2
Antenna nearing the top #3
Joe working hard to get to the antenna
Fighting the wind to secure the antenna #1
Fighting the wind to secure the antenna #2
Fighting the wind to secure the antenna #3
Fighting the wind to secure the antenna #4