Thursday, December 20, 2012

Mechanical Service company pools their resources to keep the flag flying. This is a good example of a great flagpole, fixed with a creative, but perhaps over-complex solution. Over several decades, if not hundreds of years, people have been creating better ways to fly flags, we've looked into everything from the flag fabric to the pulley at the top of the pole. There is always room for improvements, new resources will be made available to improve flag flying, but the principles will always stay the same.

The most common type of flagpole (as seen in the video) has exposed ropes. This rope material is a durable uni-laterally woven nylon or polyester which has very little friction to the fabric of the flag. This allows the flag to brush up against the rope and not get snagged. The fact of the mater is that the weakest part of a flag display, is the flag itself. Anything and everything in the reach of that flag will tear into it without hesitation. And nothing breaks out heart more than a new flag with holes in it.

So whats going on here?
First, instead of using halyard, they are using zink-coated wound steel cable. They need to replace this with rope (as described above). Secondly, the flag attachments are attached to the cable with hasp-nuts or u-bolts. All these hardware components contribute to the flag's demise. You can see the US flag is warped around the cable. At the very top of the pole, you can see the flagpole truck is broken and no longer used. In its place, they've put a pulley assembly, much like you'd find on a nautical flagpole yardarm. This is a temporary solution and may not be able to handle the stress of the zink-coated cable. Finally, the cleat on the flagpole is raised about half way up the flagpole. If security is an issue, a cleat cover box could effectively, and reasonably solve that with minimal cost or hassle (such as having to find a way to get up tot he cleat and change it.

All the same, a lot of love has clearly gone into the upkeep for this flagpole. It is not always easy to know how to fix these things. Sometimes the best solution is not expensive, while the wrong solution can be disastrous. In this case, it is clear the company has means to getting to the top of the flagpole so the idea of a bucket truck expense doesn't seem too bad. If you have the means to a bucket truck and want instructions on how to fix your flagpole the right way, drop us a line, and we can talk you through it, click here.