Tuesday, January 8, 2013

PVC has become a great material for making a flagpole, supporting a flagpole or as the foundation for a flagpole. We've seen people use PVC to make 10 ft. flagpoles, but if you are going to use PVC, it is usually better to make a portable flagpole to go. The PVC is light, sturdy, and easy to work with. But out in the elements over years, a PVC flagpole left alone can give you several problems.

If you are a tailgating fan, wanna sit out on a field and fly the team colors, you can easily do that. There are some products like this one, which are custom made for that. You can even get a multicolor flag for the team that is much more reasonable than a custom flag. The beauty of this page on FlagDesk is that you can pick a style you like, and then pick any color from the chart and see your flag before you get it.

The cheapest way to fly a flag on a PVC pole is to use zip ties. But you'll have to cut them to take the flag down or find a way to have them not tear into your flag when you roll them up. A solution might be Easy-Mount Flag Rings. But alas, on with this episode!

We ran through Des Plains and Rosemont, in search of the flagpoles in the area. Normally we like to stop at community centers, businesses, and memorials, but we couldn't help but notice this residential application. The flagpole in this video is a standard Homesteader Flagpole. The flag flyer modified the pole with a PVC pipe. So why did they do it?

Right out of the box, the Homesteader flagpole is a beauty. It is easy to set up, requires almost no tools, and the most difficult thing about the job is making concrete. Simple right? Well the flagpole is uniformly constructed, meaning the flagpole has the same thickness on the bottom as it does on the top. While you may have a tapering homesteader, the thickness of the wall remains.

The bulk of the stress on the flagpole is not shared evenly. The bottom section takes almost the entire load. That section works again the foundation to keep the flag flying. As the bottom section does its job, it becomes compromised year after year until finally, it breaks. Typically this is a bend in the pipe and the flagpole crashes to the ground. Hopefully when this happens, the flagpole doesn't hit anything or anyone to cause significant damage.

This resident, while we do not know if their flagpole suffered this fate, we do know that they chose to reinforce/replace the bottom section with rigid PVC. In this case, the PVC is much more durable than the aluminum pipe. With two screws acting as coder pins, this flagpole did not loose any height from the pipe replacement. And the PVC/Aluminum hybrid flagpole is born!