|05-12-2008, 08:24 PM||#16|
Joined: May 2007
Location: Iowa City, IA
Great pictures! Those looking-into-the-silo-from-the-top pictures scare the crap out of me though!
|05-13-2008, 08:39 AM||#17|
Deputy Cultural Attaché
Joined: Jul 2007
Location: the 'Ha
One trick we would do would be to stand at the edge of the tunnel, and turn out all of the flashlights. Of course, it would get totally dark, and the knowledge that the next step would be into nothingness was a bit freaky. Most of the time I'd take a step backward just to be on the safe side.
Successfully surviving motorcycling since 1976.
|05-13-2008, 09:09 AM||#18|
Joined: Oct 2005
Location: Diamond Bar, CA.
Questor's Pictres of the "Fire in the Hole Party"
Mark did an amazing job of photographing the Silo itself. It's not easy.
Fortunately Mark has all the high end camera equipment and can get the difficult shots. Thanks again Mark.
What I have to show you is more of a "Social Slideshow" of what it's like to dine like a king in a Nuclear Missile Silo. This whole party started off as a random "wouldn't it be crazy if..." and it turned into a reality.
The idea was, a "Nuclear holocaust Film festival" in the silo.
Our host Alex, not only agreed, but encouraged us, and finally raised the bar so high with the food he served, that I am still amazed.
I've said this before, but "Thank you so much Alex."
You are a unique indivdual.
So I'll share with you a roughly chronological version of the event...
I was supposed to meet Markbvt at 10:00am, but I got my times mixed up and though we were meeting at 8:00am. So by 9:00am I had left and took the "Long way" to the Missile Silo.
Looking west towards the Adirondack's and the direction of Alex's silo.
Of couse I've instructed the GPS to take the smallest local roads possible to get me there.
When I got to the Silo at around noon, and helped Alex with some of the pumps he uses to keep the silo dry. But soon, the other ADV invitee's started to arrive. Mark got there first and went down below to get some pictures. He was down there alone for several hours.
But by 3:00pm everyone was there, and we took a group ADV picture.
The ADV salute.
After the introductions, the "tour" began.
Explaining the Silo Blast Doors. (Yes, they are very big and weigh 25 tons each.)
Looking down into the Silo.
A view of the entryway on the surface, with the bikes in the background.
Alex, explaining the ventilation systems and such.
These are the two masive hydraulic rams that Alex has had refurbished, and will hopefully have installed later this month. What a project.
First Alex will lower a 65 foot cherry picker into the silo and chain it to the metal framework in level 3. Then these 12 ton hydraulic rams will have to be lowered into place with a huge crane, and some poor idiot will be in the 65 foot cherry picker fastening the bolts while suspened accross and over a 200 foot deep missile silo hole.
Heres a pictue showing the rams as well as the silo doors in the background.
These hydrauic rams mount to the two plates shown below. You can see the two places with all the bolts in the center of the picture.
So we decend into the Complex.
First down the entry way.
A few turns later...
You reach blast door #1.
Through the containment chamber you get to Blast door #2.
And down the access stairwell to Level 2 which has the top floor of the Command and Coltrol center.
Into Alex's "Living Room" where we will watch the movies, The Day After, On the Beach, Dawns Early Light, and A Boy and His dog.
Then down the access stairs again to level 2 of the Command and Control Center, also known as the "Bedroom". This is where they would launch the missile from. The console on the right used to contain "The Button" to launch.
A shot of the instrument pannel. Remember everyone, all this stuff is analog. Switches and relays - rooms full of them. I'll show you later...
We then went through the 40 foot long tunnel that connects the Command and Control part of the complex to the Missile Silo itself.
(I was wearing full camoflage to get in the spirit of the event. )
At the end of the tunnel, inside the silo, looking back at the access tunnel towards the C&C, there is another huge blast door. This one, anong with two others was supposed to prevent the rockets exhaust from getting into and roasting the guys launching the Missile in the C&C.
So from Level 3, you can decend down to level 4 where I took some pictures of the "Computers".
General Dynamics / Convair Astronautics was a defense contractor even back then.
Labels for "Propellant Level Panel 2" and "Fuel Tanking Panel 1".
Missile Lifting Platform Panel 1
When I came back up to Level 3 from my explorations, the Barbeque was lit.
Well, actually we had 10 ft flames coming out of the grill. We were having a barbeque in a Nuclear Missile Silo!
And having a great time.
Here's how close to the edge we were. One false step and you join all the rusted debris at the bottom of the silo, 180+ feet below.
Mark did an excellent job cooking on the grill.
Not your typical cook out location.
As I said before, Filet Mignon's in a Missile Silo - that's probably a first.
We dub'ed it "The Fire in the Hole" party.
And then we ate!
Good friends, culinary delights, lot's of beer, a few bottles of red wine, and a secure, fortified, nulclear bomb shelter, to relax and enjoy the moment.
After dinner, we watched Nuclear Holocaust movies, and created drinking games. Whenever we saw a nuclear weapon in a movie, we would all drink.
By 2:30 am we were all comatose, and proceeded to crawl off to find a place to sleep. I must say, it is a strange place to sleep.
No natural light, no sounds (aside from the snoring) and no idea what life is like "Up Top".
The next morning, we emerged into the daylight, and it was painfull to open ones eyes. Some of us we working off hangovers, while hanging out over the edge of the Missile Silo.
As the day was Mother's Day, I had to leave early to see my Mom in CT.
280 miles later, I was in CT with my parents.
But all the way home, I was still replaying the evening before.
What an opportunity. What a unique party. What good people to hang out with. Thanks to all.
I hope you enjoyed the tour.
Continental Divide Trail 2009
Empty West 2011
Questor screwed with this post 05-13-2008 at 09:22 AM
|05-13-2008, 09:15 AM||#19|
Joined: Dec 2001
Thanks for the update. I just discovered two atlas sites near Roswell, NM. One is right across the hwy from the alleged alien crash site.
|05-13-2008, 09:25 AM||#20|
Joined: Oct 2005
Location: Diamond Bar, CA.
If I had the money...
|05-13-2008, 09:30 PM||#22|
1.5 Finger Discount
Joined: Apr 2007
Location: DFW, Texas
I've done the tour of the Titan-II silo in Arizona like already mentioned, but I always wanted to see one of the Atlas silos since there were 12 of the F types were built around my parents home town of Altus, OK. To be able to live inside one of those is like every boy's dream!
Thanks for the great pics!
I couldn't find it in the original thread but how did he aquire it? Did he just buy the silo directly from the govt? I know near Altus they just auctioned off the land and empty silos to nearby farmer/ranchers who stored their equipment in the quanset (sp?) hutts.
EvilGenius screwed with this post 05-13-2008 at 09:37 PM
|05-14-2008, 12:40 AM||#23|
tra curve e tornanti
Joined: Apr 2008
Location: Firenze (I)
|05-16-2008, 06:27 PM||#25|
Joined: Apr 2008
these pix dredge up a lot of memory's. i was involved in inspecting and buying the first operational (or so we were told) atlas f sites in Kansas. also as a f system engine tech, i spent many hours in those holes. our sites being the first operational sites we didn't have working tech manuals and we were responsible for writing ,proof testing and then sending them to the publisher. after that we went to Vandenberg in kali to instruct the instructors.
as i recall, if my fading memory isn't letting me down, those silo doors weighed in around fifty two ton each. they had four ice breaker jacks at the leading edge to (strangely enough) hammer the door and brake the ice in the winter. once the doors were opened to there vertical position the cylinder had to reverse and catch the door to park it over center. up on closing, the cyl had to draw the door over center and then reverse the pressure to catch it and let it down in sequence gently. if things went wrong the doors would slam shut really hard sending chunks of concrete into the hole . needless to say it happen.
|05-16-2008, 06:40 PM||#26|
"Monster Truck Bike"
Joined: Jan 2005
Location: Northern California
Cool property, thanks for sharing. Missed it the 1st time around.
Give big space to the festive dog that makes sport in roadway.
Avoid entanglement of dog with wheel spokes. - Old Honda Manual
If you wish to travel far and fast, travel light. Take off all your envies,
jealousies, unforgiveness, selfishness, and fears. -- Glenn Clark
|10-21-2008, 06:53 AM||#27|
Joined: Sep 2007
Location: Georgia, Vermont (that's one town, not two states)
Update, October 2008
This weekend I went over to the silo for Alex's 50th birthday party.
Before leaving last May, he had installed one of the hydraulic rams that lift the main doors.
Unfortunately the door is leaning too far back to get the wrist pin at the upper end of the ram into position. The holes are misaligned by a couple inches. The door is going to need to be moved forward slightly, but none of the crane companies that Alex has contacted are willing to do it!
Alex's party was Saturday night, and he had set up a large MASH-style tent (complete with cots and olive drab sleeping bags) for his more adventurous guests. Questor and I claimed cots there and crashed out fairly early. It got pretty chilly overnight, despite two propane heaters inside the tent.
Next morning, I was one of the first to emerge from the tent. Here's what our bikes looked like.
Questor forgot to bring his helmet in for the night.
By the time I'd had breakfast and hung out for a while, the frost was gone and the day was beautiful -- chilly, but not a cloud in the sky. I took the long way home, but was having too much fun riding to stop and take pictures.
Once again, I've got to thank Alex for his hospitality. He threw a great party and took fantastic care of his guests. Happy birthday!
'11 Triumph Tiger 800 XC / '03 Honda XR650L / '01 Triumph Bonneville cafe
My ride reports: Missile silos, Labrador, twisties, and more
Bennington Triumph Bash, May 30-June 1, 2014
|10-21-2008, 07:18 AM||#28|
Joined: Jul 2007
very cool thanks so much for sharing
If You need me I'll be on the Sporty!!
|10-21-2008, 08:18 AM||#29|
Joined: Nov 2002
Location: Twin Lakes, AR
I spent a good portion of my military career hanging out in Titan II silos in AR. This brings back a buncha memories. Thanks for the trip, it's awesome.
I'm not weird, I'm Limited Edition!
Life is a sexually transmitted disease and the mortality rate is 100%
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