Welcome to Amateur Radio Station K6ATZ  •  ex KQ6MM, KD6ALY and WN2SWQ  •  First licensed 1973, relicensed 1991
QTH Cupertino, CA USA  •  Santa Clara County   ARRL Section SCV   CA QSO Party SCLA  •  CQ3   ITU6   Grid CM87xh


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MA-40 Antenna Tower Project

«« permit & foundation       « tower install       final installation »

Spring-Summer 2011: antenna installation

As spring rolled around and the house neared completion, I got more agressive in pursuing US Tower on the quality issues mentioned on the previous page. Not everything was resolved to my satisfaction, but meanwhile I proceeded with the next stage.

Below you see the tower tilted down. Don't forget to remove the rotator stub before doing this. The weight of the tower is entirely supported by the MAF-40 winch cable. It's easy to winch down, and from an angle no lower than 15 or 20 degrees it's pretty easy to winch it back up too.

MA-40 tower inserted into bearing

When mounting a beam antenna, you won't be able to tilt the tower all the way down anyway! Below you can see how I attached my OptiBeam OB6-3M tribander after the hardscape was complete. The OB6-3M was the biggest antenna I could fit in the yard. To raise it I cut some trees back, but the house and powerlines are kind of permanent.

MA-40 tower tilted

A 2" OD mast slips into the top of the tower. The US Tower permit engineering drawing shows a 5' mast, with 3' in the tower and 2' protruding, and one antenna mounted 1' down from the top as you see here. The wind and weight bearing calculations assume you will add no additional antennas or coax cables, and that you will crank the top section down during storms.

Mounting OB6/3M beam to MA-40 tower

I mounted a tiny mobile discone above the beam, but that is not likely to upset anyone as it weighs next to nothing, and the beam's 33 pound weight is only about half the tower's capacity.

Next / Previous Steps:

«« Permit approval, concrete foundation
Page 2: assembling tower
« Tower delivery and assembly
Page 2: assembling tower
Antennas, cables, rotator, grounding »
Antenna, cables, rotator and grounding

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"You see, wire telegraph is a kind of a very, very long cat. You pull his tail in New York and his head is meowing in Los Angeles. Do you understand this? And radio operates exactly the same way: you send signals here, they receive them there. The only difference is that there is no cat." — Albert Einstein