Five in a Day Part 3: Antenna

I went out to the park recently and the spot I usually stack in was well occupied with other stackers’ work. I didn’t want to detract from them or use their stuff, so I walked around the coast till I came to a secluded inlet uncommonly visited. I hadn’t stacked here before, and ended up doing five pieces there in a few hours! Part 2 here.

with the second piece up, I was satisfied and about to leave the beach, but as I packed my things, I figured I had the rest of the day and the cove needed a little more filling. so, I started on what was to be a lot of layered large stones with the typical smaller three separators between them. a twinge in my back on the third slab from the bottom made me re-think this idea, though, so I cast about for alternatives.

7.3 antenna 04

the bottom three layers being quite stable and sensible, I figured I might as well contrast it with some precarious shifting elements on top. you’ll find that, as I’m working without any sort of material that can brace things laterally and stop tipping, any stone element that is taller than it is wide is remarkably wobbly and unlikely to respond well to being loaded. think of the difference between standing on a box versus on stilts.

the uncentered vertical element is actually the stabilizing element for the three shorter pieces that support the platform beneath it. you place enough weight on a single stable point within a system, and the shifting weights around it become trivial. it’s a sort of anchoring effect. the smaller stones on top of that main vertical stone are actually meant to heighten this effect.

I am often limited on how high I can build by my own stature – this is one of those times. it would have been fun to keep building in miniature on top of the antenna, just to see how far up I could go.

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