Dropping A 40' Windmill Tower

Discussion in 'Shop Talk' started by HUBERT, Mar 29, 2006.

  1. HUBERT

    HUBERT Well-Known Member

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    I was wondering if anyone has ever dropped a windmill tower and if you have I would appreciate any tips/tricks you can provide or the
    method you have used.

    Thanks in Advance

    Hubert
     
  2. kmaproperties

    kmaproperties Well-Known Member

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    4 leg - cut all the way through 2 legs, 1/2 way through other 2 and pull down with 2 - 1/2 cut legs as hinges.

    3 leg - cut 1 all the way and 2 legs 1/2 and use 2 as hinges.
     

  3. WisJim

    WisJim Well-Known Member Supporter

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    There is an old book (well from the 1970s) called "Wind and Windspinners" by Michael Hackelman that has some good info on raising and lowering windmill towers. You local library may be able to get it.

    I always like to have a gin pole to help with the leverage when the tower is getting close to the ground. I have taken down a few, and put up a few that were all assemble, and I have a good friend who does it for a living (water pumping windmills installation and service).

    I prefer not to cut anything because then you have lost that piece of the tower, assuming you are going to reuse it as a tower.

    This page might help a little, although what I would term a gin pole, he calls a "gantry". Even though this is about raising one, just picture doing the opposite to lower it. You might get by with leaving one bolt in the appropriate joint as a pivot instead of using hinges. http://www.windmills.net/footings.htm
     
  4. Naughty Pines

    Naughty Pines Active Member

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    :walk: Run fast. :stars:
     
  5. Oxankle

    Oxankle Well-Known Member

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    We are assuming here that you mean laying one down in usable condition, not demolishing it. If you have no intention of saving it, just cut the legs loose at the bottom and pull it over.

    However, that is not what most people do. Windmills, even old ones, are worth big bucks today.

    When I was a boy at home farmers laid down their mills whenever a big storm was blowing in. Unc's tower was made of 4 x 4, heavier than the steel towers. He used the "Gantry" method to raise it, but he used long 4 x 4's to get the pull started upward, I think 20 foot 4 x 4's. To lay it down he reversed the procedure, but his wife had to start the thing down by pulling on it with another tractor or his pickup while he let his tractor do the gradual lowering. I seem to recall that he had her on the other side holding back when raising it too, to keep it from flopping down hard when it came over center.

    His water supply was a big redwood cistern on a tower next to the mill. He kept it full and it rode out the storms as if they did not exist. Cistern had no cover, so I suppose Unk operated on the theory that bird poo and the like was good for you.
    Ox
     
  6. HUBERT

    HUBERT Well-Known Member

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    I want to thank everyone for there suggestions I let you know how it goes.

    Thanks Hubert
     
  7. farminghandyman

    farminghandyman Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I have lay-ed down a few and put up a few,

    if your going to use the cut method, cut the anchors not the tower, get your cable attached to the tower and have a second rope or cable to start it over center,

    then un bolt the side that you do not want to go toward,

    and then cut the angle that is on the sides of the tower and let the flat of the anchor work as a hinge,

    but before you start, I add a angle iron on the bottom of the tower from the first brace horizontal to the lower (near the hing or bottom of the tower to strengthen the tower so the lower legs of the tower do not bend and have you lose control of the tower, and head,

    also I add two 20' heavy angle with a Y type attachment to the top of it, I place the angle on the first horizontal (usually about 7' up) pointing toward the wenching or lowering truck, I bolt the two angles in, in a A shape with the Y attached to the top of the A,

    Y
    A

    OK what does that do you may ask it gives you leverage when lowering it and control, it gives a leverage point that is up in the air so you can control the lowering on the bottom third of the process, but to use this you must be in line with the center of the tower so the cable catches it, the Y is about 12" across to catch the cable as it lowers,

    I attach to the front of the truck or tractor or have a bumper winch, (if using a winch make sure it has a brake and will not free will out under pressure),

    BY attaching to the front of the lowering truck you can watch the lowering process,

    If I knew how to post pictures I would post some of lowering a tower,
     
  8. farminghandyman

    farminghandyman Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Pictures

    Tower coming down, you can see the angles I sugested that catch the cable and give leverage, and if you look close you can see the bottom angles at a 45 degree in the bottom of the tower, this is a 12 mill on a 40' tower a lot of weight in the head,
    http://www.vintagewindmills.com/albums/pages/2367-tower down.htm

    hinges tower down
    http://www.vintagewindmills.com/albums/pages/1906-hinges.htm

    cutting a tower
    http://www.vintagewindmills.com/albums/pages/100-cut webs.htm

    hinges
    http://www.vintagewindmills.com/albums/pages/1915-dec11_04.htm
    http://www.vintagewindmills.com/albums/pages/1914-dec11_01.htm
     
  9. jefferson

    jefferson fuzzball in the Cascades

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    pull pin.......run real fast!!!!!!!
     
  10. HUBERT

    HUBERT Well-Known Member

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    I want to thank everybody for there help... I will take down this weekend.

    Thanks again
     
  11. HUBERT

    HUBERT Well-Known Member

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    Dropped tower this weekend, it was a little scary but it did go well.I want to thank all for advice....It really did help out.

    Now any suggestions on raising tower back up?



    Thanks Hubert
     
  12. mightybooboo

    mightybooboo Well-Known Member

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    Hub,too bad you couldnt do pics,really would have liked to have seen it in action.

    BooBoo
     
  13. HUBERT

    HUBERT Well-Known Member

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    Mightybooboo I did bring a camera, but there was so much going on at one time it was impossible to take any pictures.I was able to take one pic with a regular camera and I will post when film gets developed.

    Hubert
     
  14. mightybooboo

    mightybooboo Well-Known Member

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    Great Hubert,love to see it.
    My FIL is a Hubert,do they call you Hub too?

    BooBoo