Building a prototype mast for village wireless VoIP

October 18, 2007

I spent a better part of the day cutting, drilling, grinding, and assembling. The result was surprisingly stable–more stable than I could have imagined anything which just sat on the ground.

However, my concerns about the pipe being able to rotate were confirmed. The design needed to include something which would prevent the entire mast from rotating. Even half of a degree rotation is significant when dealing with high-gain antennas like we are using.

The cable tensioners (aka turnbuckles) can be confusing. I decided to always put the normal thread toward the ground and the reverse thread up. With this arrangement, because they are close to the ground, the instinctive clockwise turn will tighten the cable.

Tip: You can use the A/Z keys to walk threads.
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