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Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Antenna Rigging

Sterling harnessed in and hoisted high
Wind and rust damage are regular occurrences on Guam, and KTWR’s radio towers and antennas are not immune to the elements here. Not only do wind and salt water damage the equipment, but radiofrequency (RF) damage—essentially burn damage from transmitting—is also an issue. These problems make regular maintenance and repair an absolute necessity.

Last week, Sterling and Tom arrived on Guam from Cary, North Carolina to help with this great need. Sterling, a TWR staff member from Cary, lived and served on Guam for ten years as an antenna rigger before moving back to the States with his wife and daughter. Tom, a volunteer, is a trained metal worker and is sacrificially offering his time and talents to make replacement parts for the transmitters. While they are here, they will clean the rusted parts throughout the antenna field, replace damaged feed lines and plates, reconnect parts of the antenna screen, check and tighten the bolts on the antennas that are electrical connections, and so on.

But why would we need someone from off-island to come and accomplish these tasks? Don’t we have the staff here necessary to maintain and repair the antennas? The short answer: No. And we need help!

Tom in the workshop
Jim McIntyre has served the Lord at KTWR on Guam since 1990. Jim does a lot to help around the transmitter site, including being our main (and only) antenna rigger. But antenna rigging and maintenance for ten towers and six curtain array antennas takes a lot more than one man and the occasional volunteer.

As Sterling and Tom work hard to help with this critical need, two members of our video department from Cary have also come to Guam to film this process. Their goal is to capture the tasks of an antenna rigger and the importance of this position, and with this footage, they will create an appeal for help using visual media.

Kate and Candace with the video team filming Jim and Sterling at work
Please pray with us as we ask the Lord to provide for this very important need on Guam. To loosely quote Paul in regard to radio ministry, “The preacher on the radio program cannot say to the transmitter engineer, ‘I have no need of you,’ nor again the musician whose worship music is played on the radio to the antenna rigger, ‘I have no need of you.’ On the contrary, the parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable…” (1 Corinthians 12:21-22).

To read the job description for this position, click here.

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