Building the Ravenel Bridge

After all the photos I took, I've tried to arrange them in some order based on various topics I found interesting.

And a reminder from T.S. Eliot (East Coker from the Four Quartets)

Old men ought to be explorers
Here and there does not matter
We must be still and still moving
Into another intensity
For a further union, a deeper communion

June 6, 2004: 4th Cable Stay (west platform), East side platform extension (resting on the west pylon) and West tendon termination. Note the platform with the blue wheel - for preparing cables to be pulled up the stay pipe.

East side platform extension of the west pylon platform (July 11, 2004 note: There are no obvious counterweights because of the near symmetry (4 anchor extension segments in each direction) in westward-directed platform weight and the eastward-directed platform weight even though the cross beams for the eastward-directed segment were not yet placed. Two stacks of concrete blocks, acting as counterweights are quite obvious on the July 04, 2004 photos when the eastward- (5 anchor extension segments) and westward-directed (6 anchor extension segments) platforms were asymmetric in length

Tendon termination and stressing (west pylon)

On the left is our team: Rocky (left, emerging from the orange elevator), man-on-break (top middle), two workers (top right) and of course the supervisor, supervising (lower middle). The two workers appear to be threading the individual cables into the termination assembly. On the right is a detailed view of the cable termination housing. Note the individual cables extending out of the end of the termination housing (about 40 individual cables each about 15 mm diameter).

Boyd Gregg has contributed the following insights about the cable and tensioning process:
"With regards to the ports at the bottom of the photo, these are actually post tensioning cables (actually referred to as tendons). These tendons do exactly what you suggested. They are tensioned to the proper force with the large hydraulic ram you have pictured on your website and I have included below. This ram is only used temporarily and after the proper force is applied a wedge is used to hold that tension in the tendons permanently. I was unable to find a good picture of the actual wedge and tendon arrangement. That tension holds the legs of the tower together and keeps them from "kicking out". As you can imagine, with thousands of tons of concrete and road deck on top of these legs they would tend to spread apart."

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C. Frank Starmer