The top four grand pinnacles of the central “Gloria in Excelsis” tower rotated in the quake. These are large stone structures (more than 40′ tall, and weighing approximately 50 tons each) that rest atop the four corners of the central tower. Each pinnacle is topped by a four-foot-tall grand finial that weighs about 500 pounds. Three of the four grand finials fell off from the grand pinnacles to the tower’s roof and the top five layers (or courses) of multi-crocket stones were shaken badly and are either leaning or have broken open. A total of 45 of these immense stones must be immediately removed to stabilize the pinnacles. It can then be determined which stones can be salvaged and reused, which can be repaired, and which will have to be replaced.
On the base of each of the grand pinnacles are four auxiliary pinnacles. These are the smallest of the central tower pinnacles, (about 8′ tall) and broke free of the grand pinnacle during the quake. They are now leaning and will have to be dismantled to replace the courses of stone that were cracked.
There are also eight intermediate pinnacles that sit between the grand pinnacles on the balustrade. These rotated or shifted off their bases during the quake. Although most of the courses of stone are undamaged, they also have to be dismantled to gain access to the broken lower courses.