GTI America Installs Dielectric Repack Antennas for Tulsa stations KWHB and KGEB

By: Cory Edwards.

In our previous blog [link to DTVPros blog part 1], we discussed how when Tulsa, OK TV stations KWHB-DT and KGEB-DT relocated to their post-repack channels, they both chose DTVPros—a specialist in RF system planning and implementation services for the broadcast TV industry—to manage their installations.

To accomplish this multi-faceted project, DTVPros partnered with GTI America, which provides highly skilled crews that typically install TV, FM and AM antennas on broadcast towers up to 2,000 feet tall. In this situation, GTI America crews would be working atop the tallest skyscraper in the CityPlex Towers office complex, in South Tulsa.

The process began with the removal of KGEB’s existing antenna, and the mount system that was no longer in compliance with modern building, windload, and design codes. Two new 5,000-pound steel antenna mounts, specially designed by Hodge Structural Engineers of Evansville, Indiana, were taken up to the roof by elevator and installed in advance of the new RF equipment.

However, the antennas, which are about 40- to 50-feet-long and several thousand pounds, could not fit into the elevator. So John McKay, sales and project manager for GTI America, determined that a helicopter would be the cleanest and fastest way to deliver the new RF gear to the roof, and enlisted the help of helicopter services provider, CHI Aviation. He worked closely with the FAA to get the flight plans and schedules approved, and contacted us here at Dielectric to obtain the recommended lifting points to ensure a safe lift of each antenna.

“Everything from the location of the lifting lugs to the arrangement of the antenna bays were important,” McKay said. “We were tasked with bringing in large, long antennas horizontally on a transport truck, and then rigging it perfectly with the helicopter to avoid any damage.” Once the antennas were dropped into place on the rooftop, it only took the GTI America crew about 45 minutes to finish the installation.

Throughout the process, KGEB-DT Director of Engineering Bill Lee was in constant communication with Wes Hylton, KWHB-DT’s director of engineering, to keep him apprised of all key developments as the work progressed.

“DTVPros and GTI America turned what could have been a highly disruptive situation into an expertly managed project,” said Lee. “They kept everything on schedule and within budget, without any compromises to the technology or quality of installation.”

Jim Heard, owner of Carthage, Texas-based DTVPros adds, “The overarching goal was to cause minimal disruption for both TV stations and the local businesses and residential communities. The strategic business planning and technical contributions from CHI Aviation, Dielectric, GTI America, and Hodge Engineering were invaluable to the execution of this challenging project.”

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