Just a little Gee Whiz info
I put up a weather station on a 10' pole above my garage with an air
terminal on top, grounded via a 2ga copper into my grounding electrode
It has been hit at least twice that I am sure of. Both times it took
out the serial port on the PC the weather station is on. nothing else.
Once I was actually in the driveway when it was hit ... that was
The other time we were out in the pool bar.
I put in surge protection on the lead in to the indoor part of the
weather station and I haven't had any more problems. I am not sure if
it was actually hit since tho.
People used to spend lots on "lightning rods". And then, through
observation, they saw that lightning just as often hit things that didn't
have the rods on them, or never hit the rods and did hot other things. And
then think of it this way: If you put a better conductor higher up there,
aren't you putting out a sign that says "Lightning - HERE I AM!"
People have many misconceptions about lightning. One is that once it
strikes an object, it conducts through that object to the ground. That is
not true, and I have first hand experience with that. I was standing about
40' from a drilling tower. Lightning hit the tower, and ran down the side
of it to ground. How do I know? Well, for about five minutes, there was
this image burned onto my brain and eyes and whenever I closed my eyes, I
could see it plain as day. And the lightning was swirling, just like a
twisted piece of rope.
I had a lightning bolt hit a pecan tree outside my house one time. It
branched. It then hit my truck, blowing diagonal hubcaps off, then jumped
to a cow, which it killed. It also killed my dryer and tv in separate
"Protect against lightning strikes"? You're putting up something that will
attract them. Even if you put it up on a wooden pole, the pole and wiring
will be a path of a lightning bolt. I'd take the ground wire iff'n it was
me. Isn't it already grounded where it touches the ground, or close enough
that a big bolt of lightning couldn't arc that short of a distance? If it's
on the side of the house, and the bottom is up from the ground, it can jump
that far. Remember, this bolt I had struck a green leafy pecan tree.
Doesn't sound like anything that lightning would be attracted to to me.
There are "lightning arrestors" made to be used between the antennae
and ground, but not sure about the mast (most are already grounded). I
suggest talking with your local firefighters for the safest
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