Not sure this is the site to ask this question, but here it goes anyway:

The other day I saw an electricity cable hanging in an unusually wide curve. That got my attention and I looked out of the window to find out that that cable was in the process of installation by two guys on top of two very high apartment buildings about 70 meters away from each other. There were no cranes in vicinity, so naturally I started wondering how in the world they got one end of the cable to the other roof. It isn't likely that one guy just threw a cable's end to the other guy. How is this done in cities without the use of cranes?

  • If there's a "how is technical stuff done in cities" SE site, please let me know so I could repost there :) May 3, 2013 at 1:41
  • Sorry but this is off topic for a site about do-it-yourself and home improvement.
    – ChrisF
    May 3, 2013 at 7:37
  • Where in the world are power cables strung between the tops of high-rises? This sounds like an experiment or a tight rope setup.
    – Mazura
    Nov 7, 2015 at 2:52

1 Answer 1


Highly possible that one guy used a bow to shoot an arrow tied to end of a ball of string. As the arrow flew to the position of the other guy the string feed smoothy off the ball. In no time the two fellows had a length of string between themselves.

If it was a windy day then one guy possibly launched a kite out into the breeze. By running the kite out a good length the second guy was able to catch the kite string in hand.

In any case with the string between them then a light weight rope is tied to one end and the other guy used the string to pull the rope across the gap. The light rope is then used to pull across a stout rope.

Now you can guess that the stout rope, being strong and durable, is used to pull the electrical cable across between the buildings!!

  • Sounds legit! :D May 3, 2013 at 7:42
  • 1
    If it was my first day on this job, I would've gone with the crossbow and strings. It probably also would've been my last day, but still I would never forget that! May 3, 2013 at 7:48
  • A bow or slingshot is typically used for tree guys to get the ropes on limbs. Most of the time if a person can already reach the height, like a apartment roof, it is significantly easier to simply drop the lead line. The concept is similar to snaking a line, as all you need is access to both ends.
    – Jason
    May 3, 2013 at 19:56
  • I thought you were joking. But it turns out that kites are how we got a string across the Niagara to build a bridge.
    – Mazura
    Nov 7, 2015 at 2:58
  • Shooting a rope/string off a ball or coil is generally ineffective, notwithstanding the popularity of coiled harpoon ropes in movies. A much better approach is to use a faking box (see lighthouselens.com/items/index.php?id=245 for an example). Just before use, the frame is removed, allowing the rope/string to play out smoothly without any twists, kinks, snags, or other difficulties.
    – supercat
    May 16, 2016 at 14:59

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