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  1. #1
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    Angry Lighting Rod or decoration?

    Would you call this a lighting rod or just decoration? at any case, should it have a ground wire? It is too hard to post on here and how do you post a pic? It took me over 30 min to get this far. The new forum sucks, Its like something is missing. anyway there is no pic because I can not figure it out.

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  2. #2
    Frank Kunselman's Avatar
    Frank Kunselman Guest

    Default Re: Lighting Rod or decoration?

    Even without a pic, is there a visible grounding cable from the rod to a grounding rod at the ground? If not, it's decoration.


  3. #3
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    Default Re: Lighting Rod or decoration?

    Tony,

    Posting a pic is in "additional options" when you post a thread. I found it easier than in the original board.

    Department of Redundancy Department
    http://www.FullCircleInspect.com/

  4. #4
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    Question Re: Lighting Rod or decoration?

    even if it is decoration should it be grounded? It will be struck by lighting because it is the tallest thing around.


  5. #5
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    Default Re: Lighting Rod or decoration?

    Tony, Chill. Ground wires must be present for system. I don't see any. DID you?


  6. #6
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    Question Re: Lighting Rod or decoration?

    These are copper whatever, and there were no wires connected to them in the attic or roof. Is this a fire hazard?


  7. #7
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    Default Re: Lighting Rod or decoration?

    Tony,

    Here in CA, lightning strikes are uncommon and grounding of metal spikes on roofs is typically not enforced. Many other places in the U.S. are prone to lightning strikes and things like in your pic should be grounded. I have heard that some areas even require metal roof gutters to be grounded. Not sure if the spikes on the roof directly constitute a fire hazard, but it is likely improper. I would certainly advise grounding. Since I do not know your location, I am unable to give you more information.

    Department of Redundancy Department
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  8. #8
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    Default Re: Lighting Rod or decoration?

    Tony,
    When something changes it always seems to "suck", but after you use it for awhile it becomes second nature. New board is cool to me even though I'm partial to the old one. Give it time you'll like it.

    Mike Schulz License 393
    Affordable Home Inspections
    www.houseinspections.com

  9. #9
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    Near Philly, Pa.
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    Cool Re: Lighting Rod or decoration?

    NFPA 780 for lightning protection systems. In general, if you don't see braided bonding cables on what appear to be air terminals or a braided ground line to at least 2 ground rods spaced widely apart, it probably is not a lightning protection system installed per 780. Often, these were properly installed until they had a leak from the aerial terminal mounting or they added on and just removed the cables. Problem is, those aerial terminals may still work.

    A NASA engineer once stated that the better grounded anything is, the higher the likelihood of taking a hit. Either insulate like hell or bond and ground like hell.
    hth,
    Bob

    Keep the fire in the fireplace.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Lighting Rod or decoration?

    Those are just finial's. They are not for lightning protection. The design is supposedly be safe. That ball in the middle, from what I have been told is suppose to disrupt the lightning strike. As to what happens after that, my guess is that the lightning will continue its way through the finial and into the structure.

    I know of an entire subdivision of $500,000+ homes in Madison, Mississippi that have those things stuck all over the roofs of the homes. The city required them on all of the homes.

    Last edited by Scott Patterson; 06-12-2007 at 04:42 PM. Reason: Stupidity
    Scott Patterson, ACI
    Spring Hill, TN
    www.traceinspections.com

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Lighting Rod or decoration?

    Quote Originally Posted by Scott Patterson View Post
    Those are just fennel's.
    Scott,

    All I can find on "fennel" is that it is a vegetable.



    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
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  12. #12
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    Default Re: Lighting Rod or decoration?

    Try finial. The only reason I know this is when I left Baltimore, I asked somebody aboult a "fennel" and the blank stare I got told me my accent was killing me again.

    The only reason some people get lost in thought is because it's unfamiliar territory.
    - Paul Fix

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Lighting Rod or decoration?

    Mike Schulz License 393
    Affordable Home Inspections
    www.houseinspections.com

  14. #14
    Join Date
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    Spring Hill (Nashville), TN
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    Default Re: Lighting Rod or decoration?

    Well dang. That's what I get for trying to spell something that I don't have a clue about. I'm a love child from the age of phonics!

    Scott Patterson, ACI
    Spring Hill, TN
    www.traceinspections.com

  15. #15
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    Default Re: Lighting Rod or decoration?

    Thom,
    I was born in Baltimore, then moved to the suburbs. N. Linthicum next to Glen Burnie.

    Mike Schulz License 393
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  16. #16
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    Default Re: Lighting Rod or decoration?

    Quote Originally Posted by Thom Walker View Post
    Try finial.
    I wondered about that and didn't bother to search it.

    When I managed two lighting fixture showrooms so many years ago, "finials" were those fancy pieces which went on lamps and held the lamps shades in place.

    "Finials" 'finish' it off. Not sure if that is where it came from, but that is how I remembered the term.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  17. #17
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    Default Re: Lighting Rod or decoration?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Schulz View Post
    Thom,
    I was born in Baltimore, then moved to the suburbs. N. Linthicum next to Glen Burnie.
    Ja ever ride ina amblance from the Linthicum far department? I grew up in Glen Burnie. I say Bawlmer 'cause nobody knows where Glen Burnie is. I moved to Annapolis because nobody with a college degree was welcomed in Glen Burnie. If I ever moved back it would be to be near the Doube T.

    By the way, before you cut on me for living in Glen Burnie, I want you to know, I no longer look at breaking and entering as a career choice, and I no longer have enough hair to grease back. I still have all my teeth (well some are bought, but they're paid for, so they're mine.)

    The only reason some people get lost in thought is because it's unfamiliar territory.
    - Paul Fix

  18. #18
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    Default Re: Lighting Rod or decoration?

    I don't believe that all finials are lightning related. They were an architectural feature left over from weather vanes. I think that originally the part above the vane. When people became gentified, they kept the roof decorations, but left the vanes behind. You'll still find a lot of them on late Victorian stuff back east. And they are not always metal.

    Here's a link for a place that specializes in them. Tony, you can stop worrying.
    Denninger Roof Finials - Overview Page

    The only reason some people get lost in thought is because it's unfamiliar territory.
    - Paul Fix

  19. #19
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    Default Re: Lighting Rod or decoration?

    And some of purty good size too!

    From the link Thom posted: Denninger Custom Finials - Cutler Ridge Mall, Dade County, FL

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  20. #20
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    Talking Re: Lighting Rod or decoration?

    Thom, Thanks the link was great. I will send it to my client.


  21. #21
    jeff jasiorkowski's Avatar
    jeff jasiorkowski Guest

    Question Re: Lighting Rod or decoration?

    LAVA Home Inspections
    Would that finial be the same as a metal cap on a water heater vent or fireplace, we dont call those out to be grounded.


  22. #22
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    Default Re: Lighting Rod or decoration?

    They are decorative. I have lightening rods on my house--installed by a previous, very paranoid owner. He even put them on every outbuilding too. The grounding wires attached to mine are about 1/2 inch woven copper cable, with each one attached to a very deep grounding rod. You would have seen the grounding cables if they were there.


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