Cleaning the anchor bolts on a wind turbine tower for the purpose of re-tensioning and/or coating with a non-corrosive coating can be accomplished a number of ways. One of the most efficient and effective methods used to clean rust from the anchor bolts is by using the Shipman Anchor Bolt cleaning tools.
Towers often vary in the size of the bolt, nut and the distance of the bolt and nut from the side of the tower. These dimensions are critical in the sizing of the tools in order to achieve maximum cleaning. If grease is present on the bolts, Windrush and Shipman suggest that the bolts be power washed prior to cleaning with the brushes in order not to smear the grease and to keep the brushes from fouling with grease.
The set consists of three tools: one to clean the bolt; one to clean the nut; and one to clean the top and base of the nut, washer, and tower base. This is accomplished by using a slow-speed one-half-inch electric drill with the Shipman tools. Estimated time to clean one bolt is approximately three minutes or less, depending on the condition of the fastener and the amount of rust present. The approximate amount of time to clean the typical tower with 160 bolts at three minutes per bolt would be approximately eight hours. This time can be cut substantially by using a two or three man crew and working in succession.