WINDMILL
TOWER INSTRUCTIONS

DEAN BENNETT SUPPLY
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HOW TO INSTALL THE AERMOTOR STANDARD
4-POST AND WIDESPREAD WINDMILL TOWERS


SAFETY PRECAUTIONS FIRST

    It is recommended that there be at least two men working together on the tower installation. It will save time and make the job safer and easier. 

ASSEMBLING A STANDARD 4-POST TOWER

    Your Aermotor windmill tower can be built completely on the ground and hoisted into place by means of a crane, boom truck or similar equipment. You can also build it section by section, from the ground up. The method you choose will depend on your experience and ability. If you choose to build the tower on the ground, care must be taken to prevent bending the lower tower legs while lifting into place. Extra bracing placed near the base of the legs will help add temperary support until the tower is lifted into the upright position and anchored to the anchor posts. Then the temperary braces can be removed.
    Aermotor windmill towers are also designed so that they can be built from the ground up. All girts are located just below the splice of the corner posts so that the installer, standing on planks placed at any set of girts, can assemble the section above. It is recommended that the planks used be two 2" x 12" planks and placed close to the corner posts to support the weight and eliminate the possibility of bending the girts. Lay two planks on each side of the tower and two planks in the opposite direction overlapping the first planks ( using a total of 8 planks per section ). Leave them in place at each section, so you can return to the lower level to tighten bolts.  

Building a windmill tower is a 2 man job.

Check your materials prior to beginning the construction. Lay out all the pieces in piles with like pieces. Open the bolt box and lay out the bolts in piles of different sizes. Check everything against the component parts list to be sure you have everything prior to starting to put the tower together.
    On towers for 8' and 10' windmills, the lower corner posts are 13' 8 1/2" long and extend over two panels of the tower. On 27' and 40' high widespread towers, the lower corner posts are 7' long.
    The top corner posts for 21', 33', and 47' high towers are 7' long. The widespread towers for use with 12' mills, 14' mills, and 16' mills are also 7' long, but they are bent slightly just below the platform location.
    After inspecting the materials, you are ready to start the installation.

Parts identification for windmill towers.

Anchor holes..
     The anchors are the foundation of your tower, so you must exercise care in locating and digging the holes. It is recommen- ded that the bottom 2 feet of the hole be filled with cement and be topped with dirt. The holes should be at least 2 feet in diameter to provide a secure foundation for the tower.
     See the tower base layout drawing below and to the left. 

Layout design and measurements for windmill tower installation. For 14' diameter or less size mills, the holes should be
4' 9" deep and for 16' mills the holes should be 6' 6" deep. Be certain the bottom of all four holes are level to secure your tower to.
     Anchor posts cross plates are bolted back to back to the upright. After tightening bolts, place anchor post in holes, but DO NOT fill the holes yet.
     Attach the loop steps to the tower uprights prior to beginning installation. Then as you construct the tower, you will be able to use the steps to climb.
TOWER BASE LAYOUT DIMENSIONS - 4 POST TOWERS

STANDARD TOWER

WIDE-SPREAD TOWER

FOR 6, 8, & 10' MILLS

12' MILLS

14' MILLS

16' MILLS

HEIGHT

A

B

A

B

A

B A B

(FEET)

FT IN FT IN FT IN FT IN FT IN FT IN FT IN FT IN
21' 6 0 8 5-13/16                        
27' 5 6-13/16 7 10-1/2 6 8-1/8 9 5-9/16 6 8-1/4 9 5-1/2        
33' 6 10-3/4 9 9 8 4-1/4 11 9-3/4 8 4-3/8 11 9-15/16 8 5-1/2 11 11-9/16
40' 8 2-11/16 11 7-1/2 9 11-7/8 14 1-1/2 10 0 14 1-11/16 10 1 14 3-1/8
47' 9 6-5/8 13 6 11 8-1/16 16 6-1/16 11 8-3/16 16 6-1/4 11 9-1/8 16 7-9/16
Anchor post hold a windmill tower secure so the wind does not blow it over. Round braces add support to a windmill tower. Bottom of a windmill tower showing the bracing support.
Be sure the diagonal distance between the tops of the anchor posts is exactly the same, and that the center point where the diagonals cross is centered over the well.

Assembling the first section

There are two types of corner posts. One has notches at the one end. This section goes at the top of the windmill. The set without notches goes at the bottom.
     Bolt the bottom sections to the anchor posts, connecting the end that has two holes to the anchor post. Connect the longest set of girts inside the corner posts, about 7 feet above the ground, through the holes provided. Install the bolts so the nuts are to the outside. Snug them, but do not tighten them.
     Next install the lower sections of the angle braces on the outside of the corner post, bolting the bottom end of the brace to the upper hole of the anchor post splice. These braces are made both left and right, and when correctly installed, will have the flat side up. Splice the top brace section (D) to the bottom brace section (C) at the bottom girt, and bolt to the bottom girt. Connect the top of the top brace (D) to the corner post at the second girt from the ground. Snug your bolts, but do not tighten them.

Where your angle braces cross, they should look like the drawing to the right. Attach the top ends of the angle braces to the corner posts with the same bolts used to fasten the second girts. The angle braces will have extra holes to allow their use with different height towers. You will also install the round brace (E) onto the same bolt as you did the second girt and angle brace. The round brace will hang free until you build the next section of the tower. Snug all the nuts up, but do not tighten until the section above is built.
Assembling the second section.

Angle brace support for windmill tower construction.
     Begin by placing planks as close to the corner posts on the top set of girts. These will make it possible for you to stand to assemble the next section, and offers storage for the parts you will be using to assemble the second level.
     Install the next girt, and connect the other end of your round braces diagonally across the tower at the corner post where the girt connects. The round braces are used in the same manner as the angle braces on the lower section. When the second section is completed, return to the lower section and tighten all bolts and nuts.
Setting the anchors.
     With 2 sections of your tower completed, level the anchor posts carefully. Be certain that the pump or well casing is in the exact center of the tower and that the base of the tower is square. To level the tower, use a straight edge and spirit level on the bottom girt. To square the tower, measure diagonally across the tower between the anchor posts, making certain that the distance is the same in both directions.
     When everything is level and square, fill the anchor holes. It is recommended that you fill the bottom two feet of the hole with cement, and allow it to set up. Then finish filling the hole with dirt and tamp it well, being sure that the tower does not move while tamping the dirt.
The top of the tower.
     When the top corner posts are in position, place the wood platform in position and secure it with the four L shaped bolts. The beveled side of the platform aligns with the loop step ladder corner to allow easy clearance for climbing above. Slip the mast pipe into the tower and install the two shorter bolts on that side of the tower to which the furl handle is to be attached. The two longer bolts, which support the furl lever, install on the opposite side.
     The furl lever of the mill must be on the opposite side of the tower from the furl handle at the foot of the tower so that the furl wire will pull across the tower and clear the platform.
     Be certain to lock the notches at the top of the corner posts together and install the tower clamp and tighten securely.
    Connect the furl wire to the furl lever at the top of the tower and to the furl handle at the bottom of the tower. When the furl handle is all the way down, the furl lever will be against the nuts at the bottom of the support angles. When both furl rings are in place, installation of the motor can proceed.
Assembling the mill.
Windmill post assembled into a windmill tower top.
     Using a gin pole and tackle, lift the motor to the top of the tower and slip it onto the pipe. Assemble the tailbone and vane on the ground, and lift them up and attach them to the motor. When the vane is in place, install the vane spring and pull the mill out of the wind. Be certain that the furl handle is secure so that there will be no danger of the mill turning into the wind while the wheel is being assembled.
Building the wheel.
     Preassemble the six sections of the wheel on the ground and install them on the windmill motor according to the instructions packaged with the mill.
     Next install the pump rod up through the post and connect the lower swivel end to the wood pump pole. The other end of the wood pole will connect to the rod that operates the cylinder in the well. Rotate the wheel to the bottom of the stroke and mark where the rod meets the wood pole. Next pull the rod up about two inches and connect the rod to the pole. Rotate the wheel to the top of the stroke and check that there is clearance so the cylinder plunger does not hit the top of the cylinder on the up stroke.
     Double check all nuts and bolts that they are tight, on both the mill and tower.
Wide Spread Towers.
     Installation of widespread towers for 12', 14' and 16' mills is similar to other standard towers except for a few differences.
     These towers have a wider base dimension for a given tower height and one side of the tower is left open for pulling the well by having angle braces that extend up to the second girt. The bottom girt is omitted on the open side of the tower and truss braces are used to strengthen it. All the widespread towers have 7' top corner posts which are slightly bent just below the platform. 27' and 40' towers also have 7' long bottom corner posts.
     Widespread towers have heavy channel girts in the tower above the platform to provide support for the tackle when pulling the well. The tower components and the windmill are much heavier than smaller size mills and require special equipment and tackle for lifting into position. Widespread towers for 12', 14' and 16' also have oiling platforms. The notched side is installed on the same side of the tower as the long bolts for the pipe base.


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