I was indeed down there helping to take down the goalposts at the western end of the stadium, the side where the magnificent main entrance was, off Irving Avenue. We couldn't just shimmy up the uprights and unbolt the crossbar, as someone had covered the uprights with an enormous quantity of vaseline (which incidently ended up getting all over everything...I distinctly remember one guy who was helping to violently shake a goalpost, right next to me, suddently stopping and emitting a high pitched scream. "It's in my eye! It's in my eye! It burns! Aaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhh!). Cautionary note 1 for future rabble rousers: beware the vaseline.
I laughed out loud several times as I took that memory journey with you. I'm still smiling, great story.I was indeed down there helping to take down the goalposts at the western end of the stadium, the side where the magnificent main entrance was, off Irving Avenue. We couldn't just shimmy up the uprights and unbolt the crossbar, as someone had covered the uprights with an enormous quantity of vaseline (which incidently ended up getting all over everything...I distinctly remember one guy who was helping to violently shake a goalpost, right next to me, suddently stopping and emitting a high pitched scream. "It's in my eye! It's in my eye! It burns! Aaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhh!). Cautionary note 1 for future rabble rousers: beware the vaseline.
So we ended up just twisting the uprights back and forth violently, got into a good rhythm between them (you can see it in the video), making the goalposts do a crazy twist. A couple of boneheads had somehow scaled up to the cross bar, and as it started to sway back an forth, struggled to hold on and were eventually thrown far off it (might well have broken some bones in the process). They cried out asking us to stop, but it was really hard to get the whole thing moving and we were not going to stop once we had it close to collapsing. Cautionary note 2 for future rabble rousers: do not trust your cohorts (always wanted to use cohort in a sentence, also rabble rouser).
As we shook the uprights in opposite directions more and more violently, you could hear loud popping sounds as the holes bored into the metal to bolt the crossbar on started to rip out. Eventually, one end popped right off. It came down hard and I think a couple of people were injured. Cautionary note 3 for future rabble rousers: wear a safety helmet.
We had a ton of people initially, maybe 50 but by the time we finally liberated the crossbar, we were down to about 12 (it was hard, dirty work and I think a lot of people realized it didn't make a lot of sense...what were we going to do with a 50 foot aluminum cross bar anyway)?
Anyway, we threw it on my shoulders and started up the relatively steep stands of Archbold to get up to the Quad. Why? I don't know. I think we had a vague idea we were going to break it into pieces and everyone would have something to take home with them. We didn't think it through. Cautionary note 3 for future rabble rousers: think it through.
The crossbar was really heavy and it joustled around a lot as we navigated up the incline, occasionally digging into our shoulders (I was black and blue for several days). By the time we got to the top of the stadium, at Quad level, we were down to 6 guys, and as the euphoria of liberating the cross bar died, we realized we needed to figure out how to cut the cross bar into 6 pieces. It was think, high grade aluminum with a heavy seam. No way we were going to break it into pieces without heavy tools. One guy said he had a hacksaw at his apartment nearby that we could use to do the deed.
So we carried this heavy monstrosity all the way to his apartment, which was down at the end of Comstock, just before East Genesee Street (a long difficult walk). We were down to 4 guys by the time we got there. We were of the opinion that a hacksaw would go through the crossbar like a hot knife through butter. We were wrong. All 4 of us labored in th basement of apartment for 30-45 minutes, taking turns with the hacksaw. We broke 2 blades, got about 3/4 of the way through the first cut (had a horrible time trying to cut through the seam) before the apartment guy decided to kung fu the first piece off (we were out of blades by this point). Against all odds, it worked, he got his piece and wished up good luck cutting up the rest of the crossbar.
Kicked out from our friend's apartment, the remaining three of us wandered aimlessly for a bit. The remaining piece was too big to walk home with (we all lived in different places) and too big to get into a bus. What to do? Cautionary note 4 for future rabble rousers: bring a hacksaw and lots of blades. Or better yet, power tools!
We ended up at a service station on East Genesee St, somewhere around the intersection with Irving (it must have closed many years ago). Desperate for help, we told the mechanic there our plight and asked him if we could use a hacksaw. He hooked us up and about an hour later, the 3 guys left each had a 3 or 4 foot historic relic.
I still have mine. It might not have any monetary value but I will always treasure it. Partly because it came from Archbold. And partly because it reminds me of my youth and what is possible when you are naive and very very enthusiastic.
Cross bars for college football are now 18 feet 6 inches long, but in 1978, they were 23 feet 4 inches. I don't know how much ours weighed but it was made of heavy duty metal that was very tough to cut with a hacksaw. The biggest problem moving it wasn't the weight but the shape. It was long and my guess is that it was 4 inches high by 4 inches wide, still gooey with vaseline, which made it awkward to hold in your hands for any length of time.hey tomcat...that was my uncles service station he sold it and moved to florida,right next door to where the yankees had pre-season camp.he worked on the yankees vehicles quite offen
but you guys need to hit the weights
depending on what sch. the pipe was, a 50' section could weigh anywheres from 60 to 150 lbs. if aluminum