A Customer’s Footings
Joe E. Dugan Jr. attaches hinges and raises his tower.
“I would have liked to have a movie of it going up, but it’s a little hard to run a pickup, a Bobcat, AND a camera, all at the same time! You might want to mention that this entire windmill can be set up by ONE person, all alone! However, it would be more convenient to have two people, so one wouldn’t have to keep going back and forth from the pickup to the Bobcat.”
“All that would be needed on the Bobcat end of it would be a big person (200 lbs. or so) to hold the rope and keep it from slamming down when it goes over-center, when it is just about all the way into the up position. You have to have about 50 or 60 feet of room on the side where the pickup is, so you can pull ahead far enough to stand the windmill up. I guess a vehicle with a winch would work just as well, if space was limited.I built the base section (first 10 feet) out of heavier iron than what the original tower was made of. I doubt if that light angle iron that towers are made of would take the strain of being lifted like this.”
“If someone wanted to do that, I would suggest bolting heavier pieces OVER the originals, on the two legs that do the pivoting, temporarily, to give them added strength during the lift. A tremendous amount of weight and stress is ALL transferred to the end of the lower legs and the lower end of the gantry when starting the lift. I’d rather go for the ‘overkill’ and not wreck the whole project! A 10′ piece of 3x3x3/16 angle iron is only about $15… pretty cheap insurance!”
“The gantry was made of two 15′ pieces of 3x3x1/4 angle iron. It has to pivot on the same pins as the legs of the tower, as the whole assembly comes up. I started to pick it up, just a few inches, to test the whole thing. Then I laid it back down and DOUBLED the cable that I was using, just to be SURE that it would not break and drop the whole mess in a pile! It takes a pretty hard pull, at first, to pick it up with the head and wheel on it. Once it is up just a little way (10 feet or so) it goes fairly easy.”
Here’s a close up of the hinges…