Monday, November 26, 2012

Taking Down the Antenna Tower

In preparation for the addition we needed to remove an old antenna tower attached to the back side of the house. The triangular antenna tower was bolted to three sections of pipe that had a cement base sunk into the ground. The setup was such that the tower could rotate using two of the mounting bolts as a hinge if the third was removed. The tower was also held to the house near the top by a muffler clamp bolted to the fascia and some rope lashings around a hook bolted through the fascia.

We originally tried to lower the tower by removing the back (closest to the house) bolt from the base and letting it flip straight down. We placed a metal ring on the top hook and ran a rope through it then around a nearby tree to create a friction lowering setup. We also attached a rope up high on the tower that could be used to pull it if it got hung up on any small branches. This proved to be futile as the path the tower was forced to take was obstructed by branches (circled in yellow above) that were a little stronger than anticipated.

Instead we removed all the base screws so that the tower was free to move in any direction, however, we chained the bottom of the tower to the secure cement base so that it could not flip the bottom up unpredictably should it hit an obstruction on the way down. Having one person man the lower line and another tend to a pulling line we were able to bring the tower down and make path corrections during it's descent.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Backyard Clearing

Since the addition is almost entirely in the back of the house we needed to clear out a few obstacles from the construction zone.

A tall pine in the backyard had to come out. We always disliked having that pine close to the house, it was a never ending source of needles that would always make their way inside. You can see a couple of dish poles and a propane tank that need relocation in this picture.

 We had a tree company carefully block the pine down for $400, we opted to do our own cleanup to save on costs.

 There were a couple of clothes line poles in the way of the new septic field location, those had to come out as well, dug out and pulled by hand. The grassy expanse between the hill on the left and the tree on the right is the future site of the new septic drain field.