Equipment on flag pole--thoughts?

Discussion in 'Flag Poles' started by Breeden John, Mar 7, 2017.

  1. Breeden John

    Breeden John New Member

    I would like to get the forum's thoughts on an idea that I have been considering...

    Has anyone ever seen a flagpole with a small windmill/turbine where the truck would normally be? Would you consider such a display to be disrespectful in any way?

    I work for a rural power company. We have an existing 40 foot flagpole (which I tend to) at our office building. My idea is to replace this flagpole with one that has a small wind turbine atop the flagpole where the truck would be (rotors/blades perpendicular to the pole...like a flat umbrella), solar cells mounted somewhere below the flags (already common), and then have battery storage for the power generated outside of our office building. I would use the power generated using the new set-up for flagpole lighting and maybe some other outdoor lighting nearby. All aspects of the design would be first-class so that the equipment does not detract from the display of the flag and so it wouldn't interfere with the flags in any way.

    So, what are your thoughts on this? If it wasn't tacky looking, would you consider the mounted equipment to be disrespectful or inappropriate? We are a very patriotic organization and would not go through with this if it might be offensive in any way. In researching this idea, I could only find conceptual designs for the windmill flagpole done by a couple of engineering firms, but nothing constructed yet. None of this is against the U.S. Flag Code and related laws.

    Thanks for your advice!
     
  2. Peter Ansoff

    Peter Ansoff USA Flag Site Admin

    Greetings, and welcome to the forum!

    I can't see anything wrong with that arrangement -- it sounds pretty innovative. I reminds me of what I read somewhere about the poles that were set up for the Olympic games in Beijing. They had their own internal fans, so that there would always be wind to make the flags fly.
     
  3. Robin Hickman

    Robin Hickman Well-Known Member

    .....
    I think that in this case, "size" might matter.

    There is a company here in our area whose back parking lot abuts one of our freeways. Along the approximately 250 feet (my guess) of fencing between the company's parking lot and the freeway right-of-way, are five or six 25 or 30 foot high light posts. Attached to these light posts are halyards & pulleys (trucks) to fly American Flags from. Now, the singular (one per pole) light fixtures themselves are relatively small (but very bright) and they shine down on the parking lot at night. During the day you can easily tell (for the most part) that the poles/posts are light posts with American Flags attached and NOT flagpoles with lights attached, but at night they actually (to my eyes) look more like flagpoles with bright lights attached. As far as I know, nobody has complained publicly about the Flags being flown from light poles. And as far as I'm concerned, they all kind of 'blend in", so I'm OK with it!

    But what if this were 25 or 30 years ago and instead of a single, small light fixture at the top of each pole there were two or three long arms with large light fixtures at the ends branching out from the top of each pole?

    Back then, that might have been a slightly different story because, well... like I said, "size" might have mattered.

    Perhaps having a solar panel array (and battery storage system) mounted on top of a nearby building, and using its electricity to power a spotlight for the flag/s on the existing pole might work better and be cheaper than replacing the current flagpole with a new one that has a "hat" on top???

    BTW: Some (a few) smaller wind turbines that are mounted on buildings use vertical open "corkscrew" shapes rather than with horizontal blades.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vertical_axis_wind_turbine

    In the "Just Wondering" department: These days we have cell phone transmitting towers "disguised" as all different kinds of things. So why wouldn't they be able to "disguise" one as a really tall "flagpole"? The external antenna arrays (if needed) could be located at about the ¾ staff height so as to NOT interfere with the Flag/s flying at full or half-staff. It would also have a built-in electrical supply to power a nighttime light (or two) for the Flag/s!


    Just my "two cents"...

    Good Luck!

    PS. Speaking of rural power companies... This is from the "Ruralite" monthly magazine for June, 2014:
    https://www.ruralite.org/flag-man/

    Robin Hickman
    "Your Friendly Neighborhood Flag Man"
    Eugene, Oregon, USA.
    .....
     
  4. Robin, Per your inquiry:

    In the "Just Wondering" department: These days we have cell phone transmitting towers "disguised" as all different kinds of things. So why wouldn't they be able to "disguise" one as a really tall "flagpole"?

    I work in Wireless for one of the major carriers. They do this quite often, as a matter of fact, and you've probably seen them. The problem is that no one wants to take responsibility for the maintenance of the flag, and no one wants to be responsible for "apparently neglecting" the flag, either-- Techs only visit those sites once every 6 months, if all's going well, sometimes less, and "spare flags" aren't typically tools they carry.

    So instead of looking like the image in my Pole 1, they most often look like my Pic in Pole 2 below. Even when a local wants to offer to maintain the flag, one then has the risk of allowing a civilian into the tower's compound with all the security, equipment, power, cables, etc. that goes along with that.

    I see these work best at a VFW or American Legion type-location where the Organization demands it the flag be flown and the Company has a reasonably-decent gut feel that its site isn't going to be vandalized by whomever is maintaining the banner.
     

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  5. Robin Hickman

    Robin Hickman Well-Known Member

    …..
    Hi, Steve!

    I've seen a few cell towers, but none of them (that I can recall) were set-up to act as flagpoles. The most of the ones I've seen are not "disguised" in any way, shape, or form. A couple that I've seen were "supposed" to be disguised as tall fir trees. Nope! Not even close!

    So I can honestly say that those cell towers that are "disguised" as flagpoles offer the best solution that I've seen!

    Robin Hickman
    "Your Friendly Neighborhood Flag Man"
    Eugene, Oregon, USA.

    …..
     

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