Balancing From Above: How To Get Your Scaffolding Equipment To Remain Still
Posted on: 2 February 2018
The best scaffolding equipment does not jiggle, wiggle, move from side to side, or topple. If you have scaffolding equipment that is a little shaky, you will need to find ways to keep it balanced, prevent falls, and remain quite still. The best option is to replace it with newer scaffolding, of course, but that is not always the most feasible or affordable option. The following scaffolding accessories can help keep your scaffolding equipment quite safe and very still.
Gravity pins should be your first line of defense against wobbly scaffolding. These pins are oddly shaped because they insert in the connecting vertical poles of scaffolding, then twist around to grab the vertical pole above the hole where the pin is inserted. Locking into place by grabbing the upper pole reinforces the scaffolding's vertical strength so that these poles are completely unshakable. In some states, such as Nevada, gravity pins are legally required when building up scaffolding.
Wheels on scaffolding definitely have their drawbacks, especially when you are using the scaffolding outside. If your wheels do not have locks, that is an even bigger problem. Thankfully, you should be able to remove the wheels you have and replace them with locking wheels that can bear weight and remain locked. Make sure you purchase locking wheels that can hold up to a thousand pounds or more. Then, when the wheels are locked, they will not crunch or crack when multiple of your crew members climb up the scaffolding and bring several pounds of supplies or tools with them.
Weights and Counter Weights
If your scaffolding has a tendency to sway in this direction or that, employ a weight-counter weight system. This can be done by using buckets of supplies or tools that have nearly equal weight or more weight in the bucket that is stationed toward the side of the scaffolding that moves the most. For example, if your scaffolding has a tendency to sway backward, place weighted supply buckets on the forward part of the scaffolding. (Forward on scaffolding is the edge that your crew members are facing when they are working. Conversely, their backs would be facing the part of the scaffolding that tends to shift away from the work area.)
If the scaffolding sways both directions, use the weighted buckets to stop the swaying. You may have to play around with this until just the right amount of weight front and back gets the scaffolding to remain still. Be sure to evenly space your weights and counter-weights so that you do not suddenly have the scaffolding moving from side to side.
Much like pallet racking, you have open spaces on either end of the scaffolding platforms. To prevent falls through these openings, and to provide a stronger brace from platform to platform, use x-braces. These are x-shaped crossbars that brace the vertical poles as well as the horizontal poles. The result is a very strong set of scaffolding that can be built even higher if you need to build up some more. Consider making the x-braces even stronger with the use of snap pins, which are D-ring pins that can hold onto the ends of the x-braces while securing them to the vertical poles of your scaffolding.
Using All of the Above
If you use all of the above devices and approaches to strengthen and brace your scaffolding, your scaffolding should be very still indeed. After you employ all of the above, check your scaffolding by trying to shake it or move it. It should not budge in the least, and that is when you know you have done an excellent job.Share