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#11204 - 04/22/07 07:55 PM Building wooden water tower
TITMAS Offline
Member

Registered: 11/25/06
Posts: 11
Loc: SW Florida
We have been offered this job from a builder that we regularly do work for and I want to get some input from you guys as to what you think.
The existing tower was built in the 30's-40's and the base is 16’x16’ and is made from 6x6 posts, 4 of them 75' tall and full 2x8 cross braces, 10 of them on each side.
The tower is lying on its side after having been laid down by a crane to avoid hurricane damage last season. The plan was to just replace the cross braces and install new SS bolts and have a crane erect it but upon closer inspection it has been decided to completely rebuild it with all brand new timbers and hardware but as an exact replica of the old one because its registered with the historical society. The repair aspect was no problem but now tower erecting is new territory for us and we are looking for some input from anyone who has experience with this type of construction. The new timbers are 16' 8x8’s that will be joined end to end with a 3’ scarf joint and 3 through bolts. All the connections and the layout of the posts and cross braces are shown in the plans but it’s the actual building sequence and erecting of the structure that we are not sure about. We would like to avoid having put up staging or rent a crane for 3 weeks but rather build it on its side and have a crane for one day come in and stand it up. Any thoughts or ideas would be appreciated. Ill post some pics once I upload them to Flicker.
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#11205 - 04/22/07 08:17 PM Re: Building wooden water tower [Re: TITMAS]
TITMAS Offline
Member

Registered: 11/25/06
Posts: 11
Loc: SW Florida


Edited by TITMAS (04/22/07 08:19 PM)
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#11210 - 04/23/07 01:12 PM Re: Building wooden water tower [Re: TITMAS]
Gabel Offline

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Registered: 11/18/03
Posts: 687
Loc: Georgia
Your dead right to build it on its side and stand it up in a day. The only connections to make would be at the ground. No climbing, except to unhook the crane, and that is after everything is permanently attached.

Upon first glance, I'm thinking I would use 2 cranes to pick it flat and rotate it to vertical in the air. If you aren't qualified for planning or directing this type of lift, don't do it -- you can sub it out and learn loads in the process. Call a local reputable crane co. (maybe the ones who laid it down) and talk it through with them. They would probably take it on as a contract lift, providing rigging, riggers, equipment, etc.

Looks like a cool job, keep us updated.
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Gabel

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#11211 - 04/23/07 08:53 PM Re: Building wooden water tower [Re: Gabel]
northern hewer Offline
Member

Registered: 03/17/02
Posts: 1121
Just a comment:

I am not so sure that construction of this type of structure should be undertaken in a horizontal position, first off it certainly was not done like that originally.

secondly just think of the angles and bracing that needs to be permanently placed in exactly the right position horizontally so that when upright all the 4 corners are angled correctly.

I would encircle the erection site with scaffolding, tying and staying them well, and at the very top place blocking to hoist the prepared timbers into a vertical position for fastening .

Churchtowers are a good example of preparation, hoisting into position, I expect by the use of a gin pole (at that time), and surrounded with wooden scaffolding. I am sure that they were put together piece by piece,, and then worked on their exteriors from the scaffolding.

I can remember well the hydro towers (110 ft high) being erected vertically piece by piece using a gin pole and horse power, things went along pretty smoothly, and hundreds were built this way. You would think that if horizontal construction was better they would have used that method.

It would be nice to hear other comments

NH




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#11212 - 04/23/07 09:01 PM Re: Building wooden water tower [Re: northern hewer]
Don P Offline
Member

Registered: 01/12/07
Posts: 217
Loc: VA
That one looks pretty hefty but many towers have been built and tipped up with a gin pole. Any old nudists still around that saw the original go up?

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#11215 - 04/23/07 11:10 PM Re: Building wooden water tower [Re: Don P]
TITMAS Offline
Member

Registered: 11/25/06
Posts: 11
Loc: SW Florida
Gabel
Your right that building it on the flat will lessen the exposure and liability. And we are going to hire out the actual crane operation to a qualified outfit. But thats changed somewhat now that I checked where the new footings are going. Right in the middle of where the old tower is sitting and now there is not enough room to build it on site. We are now exploring the option of building it off sight in 16' sections and trailer them in.
northern hewer
True, building a structure on its side presents a unique set of challenges . However I feel that if we use the old pieces as templates and copy their angles and bolt holes that when it gets assembled it should hold the proper angle (or close to it). Add to that that we are setting it in only 16' sections , 4 posts and 4 sets of cross braces, there is not much chance that it will be so far out of line that we cant adjust it before we set it.
Don P
If there are any old nudists still around from when it was erected 50 years ago I sure a heck dont want to strike up a conversation with them about the 'good old days'. But I'm going to do some research at the local library and see what they have on it. I'll post back when we have decided on a plan and I'll also post some pics along the way.



Edited by TITMAS (04/23/07 11:12 PM)
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