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Thinned Skinned

Punctures in the shelter's skin and seams that are split are open invitations to leaks. Look for punctures and tears during operator PMCS. If you find any, have your unit repairman patch them right away.

TB 43-0124, Maintenance and Repair Procedures for Shelters, tells what unit maintenance can repair, as well as the tools and materials needed. You'll also want to check out TM 10-5411-205-12 for the S-250 shelter and TM 10-5411-207-14 for the S-280 shelter. They'll give you additional tips on saving your skin.

Dry Receptacles

Cable receptacles, like those used with 26-pair cables, are easy prey for moisture and the corrosion it brings.

When you're not using the receptacles, keep the covers on them. If the receptacle gets wet. dry it immediately with a clean cloth. Corrosion on the contacts? Clean it off with isopropyl alcohol. NSN 6810-00-753-4993. Apply a light coat of silicone, NSN 685000-880-7616, on the receptacle's gasket. The silicone helps preserve the gasket, which makes for a tight, waterproof connection.

On Top of the Shelter

The number one shelter damage problem is the self-inflicted wound caused to the shelter roof by piling things on lop of it. Concertina wire, ground rods, antenna elements, and even tarps and tents can puncture the thin skin of the shelter roof.

To solve this problem some soldiers have placed pallets or plywood between the roof and the equipment piled on top. This does not solve the problem. It only makes it worse!

These platforms and their protruding nails and sharp edges puncture the roof skin, and allow much heavier loads which cause the foam bonding between the outer roof and the inner ceiling to separate and eventually destroy the supporting spot-welds..

Once this happens the aluminum ribbing, plywood thermal barrier and foam material filling the 2-in space between the outer roof and inner ceiling is exposed to the elements. You've lost your first line of shelter protection.

The only way to protect your shelter is to protect your shelter top. The only way to protect your shelter top is to never, ever, put anything on top of it!

To reinforce this. get your commander's authorization to stencil THIS IS NOT A LOAD-BEARING SURFACE on top of your shelters.
COPYRIGHT 2006 PS Magazine
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Copyright 2006, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

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Title Annotation:Communication Shelters ...
Publication:PS, the Preventive Maintenance Monthly
Date:Dec 1, 2006
Words:371
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