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Hi stuwer, Use of the Support Cage rods is not mandatory (many growers use the cage without them). They are suppose to provide additional structural support to the original Support Cage design. If you do use them, make sure you use the proper length rods (they are just a bit longer than the ones you use inside the tower sections of the TG). Also, when it comes to screwing the nuts on, it is easier to turn the rod rather than the nuts.