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Reviews Categories | Towers, masts, accessories, climbing gear | Rohn HDBX-48 Free Standing Tower Help

Reviews Summary for Rohn HDBX-48 Free Standing Tower
Rohn HDBX-48 Free Standing Tower Reviews: 9 Average rating: 3.9/5 MSRP: $$999 - $1600
Description: The Rohn HDBX series towers are the heaviest, and strongest of the BX series. Available in heights of 24' to 48', they consist of the bottom sections of the full 64' standard BX tower. The legs are of beaded channel. They have X bracing that is riveted at the ends and in the middle.
Product is in production.
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W4MEC Rating: 4/5 Sep 14, 2014 07:40 Send this review to a friend
HDBX gives good service.  Time owned: more than 12 months
I've had the HDBX-48 up for over 20 years now with no problems. It is a bit of a bear to climb, I'm 6'4" with big feet and when at the top I have a foot in each side, but Rohn 25 is just as difficult for me. I have a Wilson tribander, 5 ele. on 6 and 13 on 2 up there, along with a 6 others hanging off the sides for 6 meters and up, mostly ground planes and coaxial style and an aluminum tube 6 meter dipole. I was warned that large arrays will flex the tower and pop the rivets, but I have not seen this occur, but my windload is far below the tower specs. One thing I do for maintenance is to wire brush and cold galvanize the rust as it appears and also use auto body undercoat in a spray can around the tower legs where they exit the concrete. I discovered the comments on this tower while researching the cost of 28 feet of BX tower trying to figure out why MFJ charges so much for the HyTower. BX, HBX, and HDBX are really expensive now-a-days, they used to be one of the most economical towers around, guess they are cheaper than a lot of other options though.
K9WI Rating: 3/5 Dec 28, 2012 19:09 Send this review to a friend
Hell to climb  Time owned: more than 12 months
Tower is a tapered tower, with the top most section only about 10 inches wide. While there is a ladder on this section, unless you are a dwarf, it is useless. Climbing the other sections are no fun either as they are very narrow in width.

Raising the tower was no problem for me since I hired a crane.
AJ3A Rating: 5/5 Oct 27, 2011 21:38 Send this review to a friend
LIKE A ROCK!!!  Time owned: more than 12 months
I've had this tower up since 1991 and it stands tall and ready for anything Mother Nature send her way. I have about 100lbs that sits on it It has survived three hurricanes with no damage at all.
W7NIK Rating: 1/5 Oct 20, 2011 09:52 Send this review to a friend
Thomas And Shelby company wants big money for plans  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I tried to purchase this tower. The plans for stamped drawing for the building dept was $1500. Thomas And Shelby sell the product but do not surport documents for the install requirements
Always have the drawings before spending money on a tower.
K4GDW Rating: 4/5 Mar 18, 2011 14:00 Send this review to a friend
Rock solid  Time owned: more than 12 months
I've had a HDBX48 tower up now for 3 years with a Tennedyne T6 LPDA, 10 element VHF yagi, and a Comet GP9 vertical stacked above it. The T6 has a 12' boom, 2' longer than the recommended length and I've had 0 problems. I have watched it in 60mph wind gusts when the last hurricane that hit the gulf coast made it to Montgomery as a tropical storm. It didn't budge at all. There is no visible rust.

Installing it was a little bit of a hassle as the sections didn't want to fit together. I pity the next owner of the property if they decide they want to remove that 5'9" x 5'9" concrete block. I didn't even attempt to dig that monster myself. I hired a concrete company to do it. When all was said and done, the concrete truck had about a wheelbarrow full of concrete left over out of the 5 yard minimum load. I'll be moving soon and will be having a tower moving party. With any luck, the only thing I"ll have to buy in the way of tower hardware is a new set of base stubs.
K9FON Rating: 4/5 Aug 9, 2009 20:31 Send this review to a friend
Great  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I have a BX 48 in my backyard and without a dought, it is a great tower. It however, only holds up a doublet and a 10 meter veticle ex CB 5/8 wave antenna. When installing the sections sometimes they dont nest together all that well and it takes a bit of "jimmying" to get the sections to fit together. Also, never climb one of these towers wearing athletic shoes, as your feet will hurt! A lot of hams on the forums down these towers, saying they will not hold the boomlenth and windload. Thats bullcrap, as I have several Rohn BX towers here around me that hold everything from TV antennas to Moonraker 6 32' CB beam antennas, and some of these towers have been up 35+ years. I think Rohn underrated the loading capabilities so as not to be sued if someone did overload the tower and it came down.
Overall, these towers are very well made and id take another one if i had the chance.
KK0DJ Rating: 4/5 Jul 15, 2007 04:54 Send this review to a friend
Good Tower  Time owned: more than 12 months
Back when I lived in Livermore, CA., several of us hams; N6DVY, KB6BD, AA6F and I (NU6O at the time) purchased HDBX48 towers together and helped each other erect them. We had a gin-pole and other helpful tools like good climbing belts and hams willing to climb! Once the towers were up, we put various antennas up amongst us. I had put up a Cushcraft A4 with the 40m option. I recall that I had put a light duty Alliance HD73 rotor in the tower as well. Beware that if you purchase the HDBX48 that a Tailtwister or rotor of that size will not fit in the tower. The towers are robust, and easy to erect. My personal experience in digging a 5' square hole was difficult, but other than that, no issues at all. To my knowledge all of the other towers are still standing. The comment regarding shoes is all too true. Good boots with a steel shank along the insole is the only type of shoe that I found I could have comfort with while climbing the tower. I would purchase another one given the chance.
KI6SZ Rating: 5/5 May 29, 2007 12:44 Send this review to a friend
Very Strong and Tough  Time owned: more than 12 months
I owned the 40' version (HDBX-40) of this tower while living in West Texas. This is indeed a very strong tower -- During one particularly strong wind storm, the heavy duty antenna mast I had been using became permanently bent, but the tower held up just fine. The one drawback with this tower construction is that due to the cross-brace structure, unless you are wearing very good boots with very hard soles, your feet will fatigue quickly and become quite sore, so don't plan on being on the tower for any extended period of time. Pretty easy to erect, and requires little space when storing due to the ability to nest each of the sections. I recommend this tower.
K4GDW Rating: 5/5 May 29, 2007 07:10 Send this review to a friend
Very strong, perhaps over-engineered.  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
This past weekend I had a tower raising party at my house where we stacked a brand-new HDBX-48 tower. This thing is monstrously strong. I seriously suspect that Rohn under-estimated it's wind handling capacity. They probably did so to give themselves an extra safety margin just in case someone overloaded the tower and it came down and Rohn got sued.

Now, the strength above actually turned out to be a contributing factor on the only real problem encountered during assembly. Basically, the sections fit together a little too tightly. It was very difficult to get each section to seat down into the previous section without some minor modifications. It's almost as if they put the entire tower together out of long peices of beaded channel, then used a saw to cut it into the individual sections. We got around this problem by taking a big hammer and bending in the bottom ends of the section legs to that they would fit down into the top of the lower section. Once that was done it was much easier to stack the tower by making the modifications on the ground and dry fitting each section before sending it up the tower.

Over-all, I'm very satisfied with this tower.

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