Re-purposed Poles From the Crooked Barn

We still had two of the tall center poles left after using most of the salvageable beams out of the old crooked barn that we had torn down earlier in the year.

The electric wires that go from the house to the irrigation pump were in need of more stable poles to span a small field. The poles had been sitting in limbo since we liberated them from the old structure.

An auger was attached to a chain saw body. It looks cool to use power to dig the four foot holes, but the auger only digs about three feet of that. A manual auger(post hole digger) and shovels are still needed to clean out the hole and prepare for the poles.

It’s a slow start digging the 4 foot deep holes for the power poles. The long, hot and dry summer hardened the ground. Once the top sod is broken through, it still takes a lot of muscle to hold the saw body into position. I tried it once, it was not a pretty site, a straight hole, or any deeper than when I started so I tend to leave hole digging to the guys.

Once the power auger has done its job, the manual auger is placed in the hole given a couple twists and lifted to extract the loose dirt. The manual auger is considerably louder than one would expect, but the grunts and groans as the dirt is twisted into the shaft cavity takes quite a bit of effort.

The shovels are then used to straighten up the sides and clean out the remainder of the hole.

The tractor and extra bodies are needed to set the electric pole upright into the post hole.The front end of the tractor is used to maneuver the pole into position before tipping the bottom end into the hole. It took two people holding, kicking and pushing the bottom into position. Since I was one of the people, I could not get a picture of that.

Once settled into the hole, dirt is slowly added back in around the base as the dirt and rocks are forcibly tamped solid.

The two poles were an all day task, but the power lines are now secure to the irrigation pump.

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