Old bell/new bell
Bell tug project
Model A restoration
and improved UNT Spirit Bell was shaped by many of the close
calls faced by Talons of old.
For instance, the Talons rang the old bell by literally twirling
it around using a circle-shaped crank. The 2,000-pound bell would
do a complete 380-spin at speeds
fast enough to take off an arm or at least a few fingers, according to Keith
Swartz. And sometimes it would come completely apart. The new bell rings using
a clapper with cables.
The old bell was pulled around on a fairly small trailer. It looked deceptively
lightweight and would cause tow vehicles to break down. The new bell is pulled
on a 9,000-pound diesel-powered tug built for heavy loads. The tug comes with
a trailer that allows it to be towed for long trips. It also has green strobe
Another addition to the new bell is that the clapper is removable. The old clapper
could not be removed easily, which may have caused the initial crack in the original
bell. The new bell is also made of a better grade of metal and truer steel than
the old bell.
It all adds up to a new UNT Spirit Bell and tug that the Swartzes hope will be
a campus tradition for many Mean Green generations.