Battening Down the Hatches – Station in Winter Storm Mode

Weather 24 hours

click on chart for a full sized version of the WX charts first 24 hours of the storm

We have various names for these sorts of winter weather fronts here in Wisconsin – “Saskatchewan Screamer,” “Alberta Clipper” or just “The Storm”

Had plenty of warning, so the tower is down, the longwire antenna secured and we’re ready.

Where were at 45 F (+8c) with calm winds Tuesday at Noon, by sunrise Wednesday Morning our forecast weather is -8 F (-23c) with 30-50 mph (50-90 kph) winds – resulting in a wind chill of below -35 F (about the same at -37c)!!

Looks on track with winds already howling at temperatures dropping about 6 F (3.3c) per hour. Already down to 12F (-11c) as we made a dash to the hardware store and supermarket to deal with errands.

The tower here is rated at 23 SF at 90 mph carrying 1 inch of ice extended. I’ve roughly a 11 SF of wind-loading with my mast and antennas and over built the base to take a bigger tower. No way to tell if the bigger base changed the limitations of the tower without new engineering calculations, but it certainly was easy to do at install and would allow a heavier tower to support a larger array of antennas on the same base.

With the tower lowered the performance calculations are high enough that the house would loose its roofing, windows and siding before the tower should show any damage.

I have the feed lines grounded as we’ve found this dry snow rubbed on the tower and antennas can induce a static charge.

With plenty of extra firewood brought in, the larder well stocked and a very well insulated home (even in this howling weather no significant drafts, cold spots or even noise).

Time to catch up on reading and perhaps get a start on QSL card arrears. That is until early tomorrow when weather regardless it will be off to work.




4 thoughts on “Battening Down the Hatches – Station in Winter Storm Mode

  1. k9zw says:

    As forecast it is -13F (-25c) at 5 am local (11GMT) with continuing high winds.

    Windchill is also a dramatic change, now at the -40F (-40c) point.

    The lowest should be recorded in the next few hours (good chance we would hit -22F (-30c) and windchills in the -60F (-50c) range

    The 24 hour temperature swing is 60 F (33c) change. And of course there is a good bit of blown snow out there this morning.

    Would love to just go back to be, but it is off to work(to stand down the crews).



  2. Good luck for your antennas Steve!
    I would like to give you some of 19°C degrees here in Italy.


  3. Mark Morgan says:

    hmm I do bless Lake Superior at times like this

    40 to -2-4 and holding expefcting to slow rise back toward normal

    for thius time of year

    but it is a shock to thesytem

  4. Hope you have a generator as well with the proper wiring for the house. Hate to lose heat at this time of the year.

    My rule on generators (and it’s working here through three big windstorms so far in Seattle-land): if you install the proper electrical to run the house off the emergency generator, you won’t lose power for at least five years…

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