Sunday, April 7, 2013

How do you find out what type of flagpole you have?

The Park at Vernon Hills is a senior living facility not quite like any other place in the world. We stumbled upon this place running up the Des Plaines River Trail, finding the flags along Vernon Hills. The old commercial aluminum flagpole needs some help. We'll show you how to look for signs of wear, why they are harmful to your flag display, and how you can fix them.

If we use our site, FlagDesk we can show you how to find the flagpole that sits out front of the Park at Vernon Hills. Once we know the flagpole, then we can look at what flagpole parts they will need to update their flagpole, prevent failures, and, best of all, get longer flag life.

The first step is to go to FlagDesk and scroll over the HARDWARE tab at the top. A magnifying glass at the lower right is the icon for the HARDWARE FINDER. The Hardware Finder is the best tool on the web for finding your flagpole parts. There are literally thousands of different kinds of commercial flagpoles. Each model has a unique set of dimensions and hardware requirements. knowing the flagpole you have will eliminate the guess work in finding the right flagpole parts for you.

(Note: If you are looking to replace your flagpole truck door, for internal flagpoles only, it is best to take a picture and email it to the Support Team at FlagDesk,

Now you have the Hardware Finder open. It will ask you a series of simple questions to find the flagpole you have. The first question is about style. There are three different styles. The first is the most common and will most likely be your answer, IN GROUND. The other two are for flagpoles off the building wall (wall-mounted), or flagpoles with a side arm and gaff (nautical). This tool can literally find any flagpole that fits any of these three categories. But as we said, for the most part you want the first option. And in the case of Park at Vernon Hills, they want IN GROUND.

The second question is about whether the IN GROUND flagpole has concealed ropes or exposed ropes. The most common commercial aluminum flagpole has exposed ropes, where the halyard is always on the outside of the flagpole. This is also known as external halyard. The Park at Vernon Hills, however, has the opposite, concealed ropes. This is where the ropes are hidden on the inside of the flagpole. This is also known as internal halyard. So we select CONCEALED ROPES.

The following question is about the color/finish. The Park at Vernon Hills has a standard satin aluminum flagpole. So we can select that option. So far, we know this flagpole is IN GROUND, CONCEALED ROPES, and SATIN ALUMINUM. Now we get into the particulars of the flagpole that really narrow your choices. We need to know the height. If you are getting cable or rope for your flagpole, you will want to error on the side of caution. You can always cut the halyard or cable. But if you don't get enough, you'll have to return it. Be cautious about that. (Note: too much cable can bind the winch which can cause the winch to fowl). The Park at Vernon Hills has a 30 ft. Commercial Aluminum Standard Satin Finish Flagpole. We know this from years of being in the field and seeing/installing various flag displays.

Next step is to measure the butt diameter of the flagpole. Don't confuse circumference (all the way around) with diameter, width. When getting beaded retainer rings, we have found it is easy to get a size based off the circumference and receive a very large beaded retainer ring in the mail. Again, we want to avoid getting the wrong parts. So, on a sunny day, you can measure the shadow side to side. Or you can use the formula, Pi times Diameter = Circumference. In our case, it is a 6" butt diameter.

The next question is about the truck top. The flagpole truck sits at the top of the pull and is the pulley mechanism for the rope/cable. The Park at Vernon Hills has a revolving internal assembly. In the video, you can see how the cable has warn completely through the aluminum housing. This will severally eat into the flag over a short period of time. So let's select revolving.

Finally you will get a short list of options for your flagpole. In most cases, the parts for the list shown will be the same. You can open the links as new tabs and compare and contrast yourself. In our case, this flagpole is the first option, the ECA30IH. So lets open up the hardware for this flagpole!

For internal halyard commercial flagpoles, there are roughly 10 different core flagpole parts. Each
part should be checked for rough spots, fray, or other types of damage. Replacing bad parts is a lot less headache than trying to replace parts than have broken already. We'd recommend The Park at Vernon Hills invest in a new truck, snaps, flag arrangement, and retainer ring. This few parts will go a long way to making this flagpole look new again.

When you find your flagpole, know that you will most likely not need everything shown.

Now is a great time to take advantage of the Hardware Finder. With spring here, FlagDesk has 10% OFF sale at checkout! If you have any questions, friendly staff can walk you through the process.

We just like people who fly flags.

Also, The Park at Vernon Hills has the largest residential rainforest in the world. The forest (found inside) stretches longer than a football field and 6 stories tall. That would be a good reason to want to live there!