A telescopic mast, known by some as a telescoping tower or a telescoping mast, is a long pole made up of several tube-shaped sections. As the name implies, the tubes nest within one another so that it collapses like a telescope.
While this basic structure is essential to the device, there are many variations on the telescopic mast. As a result, many different fields employ these towers for a wide range of uses.
You may be tempted to assume a telescoping tower is a kind of mast used on a sailboat. Or, it might sound like a type of telescope for watching the stars.
Don’t let the name mislead you—Telescopic masts aren’t used for either of these things! So, why use a telescopic mast?
Wonder no more: Take a look at some of the reasons people use telescopic masts and how to know what kind you should get.
First Responders and Other Authorities Use Telescoping Towers
Multiple kinds of first responders and other authorities make use of telescoping towers. Police officers and SWAT teams often use them in surveillance situations.
Collapsable masts work well for real-time and broad-scale video surveillance. This makes them a good choice for major events featuring public figures.
For example, organizations like the FBI and Secret Service employ these towers. They use them to make sure figures as major as the President of the United States stay safe.
Heat-detection cameras mounted to telescopic masts help first responders locate and rescue folks from the wilderness, compromised buildings, and even hostage situations.
Some telescopic masts are hard to hide, but others are very lightweight and narrow. Covering smaller towers up so nobody can see them isn’t an issue. Masts come in various materials and are easy to paint and disguise with tools such as camo netting.
Telescopic masts are also responsible for some of the most glamorized work cops do. If you’ve ever watched a cop drama, a true-crime show, or an action movie, chances are good that you’ve seen a stereotyped stakeout situation.
Everyone enjoys the drama of a movie’s hero donning a wire and going undercover to foil the villain. Viewers have the satisfaction of knowing that as soon as the bad guy spills the beans, cops bust in and arrest them.
The quick turnaround and seeming endless knowledge authorities have make the operations seem like magic tricks. We don’t live in the Harry Potter universe with wizard police, so how does actual undercover surveillance work?
Telescoping poles are often key to making sure those secret missions work in real life. They work as antennas to helo authorities monitor audio collected by hidden microphones.
Telescoping Masts Work Well for Broadcasting
If telescoping masts work as antennas for police surveillance, it shouldn’t be surprising to learn that they make good broadcast antennas, too. Full-sized radio towers are huge, don’t telescope, and you can’t move them. They broadcast signals long distances from radio stations to cars and homes in their respective regions, so permanence and stability are must-have features.
Permanent broadcast towers aren’t helpful when reporters need to cover events live, outside of the studio. News and radio broadcasters take antennas on the road to deliver the best on-site news and sports broadcasts. They use telescopic masts mounted on vans and trucks as antennas.
The signals transfer from the broadcasting trucks to the larger towers, which in turn send audio and visuals to radios and TV sets.
Small, independent radio stations and amateur—also known as ham—radio operators often use portable telescopic towers as radio antennas, too. They’re easy to move, much more accessible than permanent towers, and small enough to mount without expensive plots of land and permits.
Telescoping masts are a huge deal for independent radio operators because they help even out the playing field. If the only options for radio antennas were giant towers, nobody but corporations could get on the airwaves. While it’s still hard to make it as an independent radio station competing against the big guys, telescoping masts are part of what keeps amateur and independent radio alive.
How to Pick the Right Telescopic Mast for You
Telescopic masts cost less than full-size radio towers, but they’re still an investment. So, is a telescopic mast worth it to you?
Buying one is worth it if you need to film from a height—or several heights, as you can adjust the pole. Professionals looking for a quality way to do surveillance, extend wireless internet range, and more will get years and years of use out of a telescoping pole.
When you’re looking at kinds of masts, consider what height you need for the current moment. Take a look at what you’re planning to attach to the pole to evaluate weight limits. Also, think about whether you’ll ever have another use for the telescoping pole.
Some masts extend to one set height. You can’t lock them in place to use them at partial height. They’re good when stability for one use is what you’re looking for in a telescopic mast.
In contrast, lightweight, portable masts such as The RATT are especially handy because you can use them at multiple heights and angles. If you buy one that’s taller than you need for a single purpose, you can lower it for other uses.
Get Your Business Going With Professional Tips
After reading this article, you know some reasons to use a telescopic mast and how to find one that works for you. They’re a handy tool that takes professionals in many fields to new heights.
If you want to learn more insider professional tips and tricks, you’re on the right website. Click on another article to learn about more surprising ways to become a better businessperson.