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Nerves of steel


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Throughout the past summer, I watched ongoing restoration work on the steeple of the Nazareth Moravian Church. For most of the summer, a huge lift was bolted onto the face of the building to carry men and materials up to the belfry. Work on the steeple is now pretty much complete.

Today, as I walked out of the post office, I looked up at the church to see two guys inspecting the slate roof. I couldn't believe that they were walking it. Even with a safety harness, I couldn't image walking that roof in my wildest dreams. I wish I had a better camera with me, but I only had a work camera with a maximum zoom of 2X optical and 5X digital.

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I went to the company's (Leeland's) web site and found this amazing picture of them working on another steeple: http://www.leelands.com/images/steeple_ornament10_big.jpg I would have loved to have seen them rig that ladder. How the heck did they get that lower rope around the back of the steeple?

Seeing what those guys do makes me feel pretty humble.

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Throughout the past summer, I watched ongoing restoration work on the steeple of the Nazareth Moravian Church. For most of the summer, a huge lift was bolted onto the face of the building to carry men and materials up to the belfry. Work on the steeple is now pretty much complete.

Today, as I walked out of the post office, I looked up at the church to see two guys inspecting the slate roof. I couldn't believe that they were walking it. Even with a safety harness, I couldn't image walking that roof in my wildest dreams. I wish I had a better camera with me, but I only had a work camera with a maximum zoom of 2X optical and 5X digital.

Click to Enlarge
tn_2010913161059_1%20036.jpg

82.51 KB

Click to Enlarge
tn_2010913161152_1%20037.jpg

39.46 KB

I went to the company's (Leeland's) web site and found this amazing picture of them working on another steeple: http://www.leelands.com/images/steeple_ornament10_big.jpg I would have loved to have seen them rig that ladder. How the heck did they get that lower rope around the back of the steeple?

Seeing what those guys do makes me feel pretty humble.

Those guys are being reckless. Notice on the website photo how there is no appreciable lateral bracing on the ladder. What if a side wind were to blow? Makes me wonder what kind of disclosures are on the employment contract that those guys had to sign.

Marc

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Hi,

The picture isn't very good (I captured it from Google street view) but when I was an 11-year-old aspiring cat burglar, I used to climb the quoins at the corners of this building, reach out, pull myself up and over the cornice by grabbing the copper snow blocks that extend out from beneath the slates and then go up and over that slate roof to find my way in through the skylights in the roof.

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Alas, my dreams of one day robbing the Metropolitan Museum of Art and making off with a kajillion dollar score came to an end when I was 11-1/2 when another kid who knew about my exploits shot off his mouth.

My father demanded the judge send me to reform school. The judge refused and told him that if he wanted me in reform school he could put me there. My father said, "Fine, then I will."

He then sentenced me to work every day after school, every weekend, every holiday and every summer vacation for his construction company until I was either out of high school or 18, whichever came first. Being grounded all through high school was enough to end all thoughts of ever being a super cat bugler. Thank god my old man was a hard nose. If he hadn't been, I'd probably have ended up dead in an alley or in jail before I turned 21.

The climbing skills did translate very well to roof walking and doing the high work on the silos we built.

ONE TEAM - ONE FIGHT!!!

Mike

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Reminds me of the days when I was laying brick on school gymnasiums and college university buildings, watching steel guys literally walk the length of bar joists or hop from one to the next as they laid down and welded into place the metal roof decking. Every once in a while a hot piece of metal would drop down and instantly burn through every layer of your clothing to get you doing a Mexican hat dance to the amusement of all the other bricklayers and laborers. Steel guys, they're certifiably crazy - absolutely no fear.

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Hi,

The picture isn't very good (I captured it from Google street view) but when I was an 11-year-old aspiring cat burglar, I used to climb the quoins at the corners of this building, reach out, pull myself up and over the cornice by grabbing the copper snow blocks that extend out from beneath the slates and then go up and over that slate roof to find my way in through the skylights in the roof.

Click to Enlarge
tn_2010913203756_AmeniaElementary.jpg

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Don't tell me, let me guess ......... that building housed a girls boarding school? [:-dev3]

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Was on a member of a technical rescue team for 10 years. We taught other rescue squads, swat teams, fire departments, etc. rope rescue.

Here is a link to some pics

http://redsteam.com/training_ropes.htm

The pic of the 2 fellas in black shirts with nothing but sky in the background was a fun one. 800 ft platform halfway up a TV tower. Lowered the vicitm in the basic over the side down about 100 ft on a 1000 ft rope. The two rescuers rapelled down on 200 ft ropes. They had to swing over to the basket, clip to the basket with caribiners and then unrig themselves from their 200 ft ropes. The basket and 2 rescuers were lowered as a group from above on the 1000 ft rope. The 200 ft ropes were 1/2inch kernmantle static rope and the 1000 ft was 5/8in kernmantle static rope. New rope rating breaking strengths of 9000 and 13,000 lbs

During the lower, one of the newer team members did not pay attention and the lowering rig got fouled. We had to rig a few extra safety lines to hold the main haul line while we cut away the fouled safety lines. When I cut the fouled safety lines, the basket and load dropped about 1 to 2 feet. The guys in the basket kept asking what was going on during the delay of fouling of the lines, rigging new lines, and then the sudden drop. We did not tell them until they were on the ground that I was waving around a serrated knife within in inches of their one and only haul line.

I don't even consider it high until we are talking triple digits. At that point is does not matter if it is 100 or 800. The result will be the same when you hit the ground.

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