The W8UM Tower Construction (July 30, 2007)

The new W8UM tower, the heart of our amateur radio station and a long-time dream for all club members, was raised on July 30, 2007. The station’s main antenna support is a guyed 40 ft Rohn 55G steel tower mounted on top of the EECS building on Michigan’s North Campus. The tower supports a wide variety of transmit and receive antennas covering 3.5 MHz to 1.2 GHz (see the W8UM station page for more antenna information). The guy lines are Phillystran dielectric cable to eliminate guy line-antenna interaction.

Properly designing and erecting a roof-top tower is no simple feat! The tower, base, and guy support design was done by the Lonberg Design Group. Tower construction was done by Matt KC1XX and Andrew of XX Towers. These guys are good! In under 8 hours, the tower, guys, rotator, mast, and all antennas, and related equipment were installed and on the air. All of the club members on hand (and several others around campus on the ground) commented on the graceful and efficient construction process.

The tower’s success was in large part due to long-term planning, financial support from U-M and our alumni and friends, and some serious, hard work by the club members. Richard KD8APA managed the entire project, overseeing the design, parts procurement, contracting, and budget since January 2006. In the final stretch, Bill AA8RW and Helen KG8TQ assembled much of the antenna hardware including the large SteppIR HF Yagi. Steve K8QKY, Dennis KT8X, Dave WS8P, Pat WA4DSR, and Mark WD8DPA were also a great help during the long tower raising weekend. Most of all, we are grateful for the generous financial support from the Club’s alumni and friends and the U-M College of Engineering and EECS Department. Thank you for sharing our vision of a world class amateur radio station at Michigan.

73 and GO BLUE!

All photos courtesy of Mark WD8DPA