Category: Entertainment Industry

Columbus McKinnon Holds Hoist Workshops in Russia

Columbus McKinnon Holds Hoist Workshops in Russia

Hoist Workshops in Russia
Mr. Nikolay Goch, Managing Director of CMCO Russia, teaches the class. Photo Credit: Julia Pleshan

To showcase Columbus McKinnon and its products for the entertainment industry, the company presented two hoist workshops in Russia last year. Held at the Global Show Trade (Coda Audio) in Moscow, the first workshop was on January 20 and the second on May 12. More than 30 guests from leading Russian rental, installation and rigging companies took part in each session.

The workshops were conducted by Columbus McKinnon Associates, including Nikolay Goch, Managing Director of Columbus McKinnon LLC (Russia); Igor Alyamskiy, commercial director of CMCO Russia; Chris Jones, senior technician and CM-ET trainer at Columbus McKinnon Corporation Limited (UK); and myself.

In the first part of the workshop, presenters provided an overview of CMCO’s history and discussed CMCO’s entertainment product portfolio. The focus was primarily on the CM Lodestar electric chain hoist. The team presented different Lodestar models, pointing out the different requirements and laws that each met. The compact Prostar electric chain hoist was also discussed. Attendees received information on usage standards and rules, hoist structure, safety and maintenance procedures. The workshop concluded with a question and answer session.

During the second part of the workshop, Chris Jones gave demonstrations on the structure of CM Lodestar hoist in action, including a design overview, troubleshooting methods and maintenance recommendations. The workshops proved to be very successful and great opportunities to engage with our customers. Columbus McKinnon plans to hold similar workshops for customers in the future.

Dmitry Smirnov is our Sales Manager at Columbus McKinnon LLC Russia.
CM-Entertainment Mega School now 10 day Event

CM-Entertainment Mega School now 10 day Event

CM-Entertainment Mega School Each year Columbus McKinnon hosts a 5-day CM-Entertainment Mega School, to train up new entertainment riggers.

This year’s mega school, held in Orlando, Florida, was extended from the normal 5 days to a 10-day event. This one-of-a-kind class combined our 5-day Mega School with a 5-day Rope Access Certification course giving participants the chance to earn a total of 36 ETCP credits. It’s the ultimate entertainment rigger training!

Here are some of the highlights:

Part 1 of CM-Entertainment Mega School covers all aspects of hoist maintenance and troubleshooting.

CM-Entertainment Mega SchoolThe first half of this ETCP-recognized training course covered the design and operation of hoists, maintenance needs, inspection requirements and troubleshooting procedures. It also delved deep into electrical theory and troubleshooting of the CM Lodestar and CM Prostar hoists.

Participants received 12 points towards their ETCP Certification renewal. Upon passing, participants will receive a CM-ET certification card and document, both of which are good for five years.

The instructors this year were Eric Rouse who taught the entertainment rigging and myself, who taught the motors class.

Part 2 of our CM-Entertainment Mega School explores rigging terminology, equipment and entertainment concepts.

CM-Entertainment Mega School
The second part of our school was an intense exploration of rigging terminology, equipment and concepts for the entertainment industry. This year we partnered up with a company named HARP Rigging.  Nick Fleming from HARP, taught a level 1 SPRAT Class.  David Brown taught fall protection awareness, while Will Todd taught Truss Design and Theory.

The Rope Access Certification Course was a 5-day course consisting of four days of training and one day of evaluation.  This class encompasses everything a prospective student needs to understand and demonstrate to achieve rope access certification –   ranging from understanding anchors to performing a rescue of your fellow technician. Participants in this course received 24 points towards their ETCP Certification renewal.

Are you interested in next year’s Mega School? If so, please check our training site for updates on our next CM-Entertainment Ultimate Mega School or feel free to contact me directly.

Dave Carmack
Dave is a Product Trainer for our CM Entertainment Division. Other credentials include being an ETCP Recognized Trainer & IATSE TTF Recommended Trainer.
#RigSafe Twitter Chat and Rigging Safety in the Entertainment Industry

#RigSafe Twitter Chat and Rigging Safety in the Entertainment Industry

Last Friday we held our October #rigsafe Safety Webinar, “10 Frequently Asked Questions from our CM Entertainment Motor Schools” featuring Dave Carmack, Columbus McKinnon Entertainment Trainer, and Eric Rouse, Technical Director for the Denver Center of Performing Arts. In case you missed it, you can view the recording here.

To continue the conversation with both Dave and Eric, we followed our webinar with our first ever Twitter Chat under the hashtag #rigsafe, a hashtag used to promote rigging safety in the entertainment industry, an initiative started by the United States Institute for Theatre Technology (USITT). Here are some of the highlights!

The chart below shows some of our most active participants in the #rigsafe Twitter Chat:

#rigsafe

https://twitter.com/OylerBob/status/652516958907273216

Our afternoon concluded with an email I received from one of our webinar participants, Bill Bradburn from Aerial Arts, with these Latin words in his email signature: SALUS SUMMUS OMNIA. He confirmed its meaning to be “Safety Above All/Safety Over Everything.” What a great motto for a rigging company! May we all live by this motto and incorporate it into everything we do.

A big thanks to everyone who participated in our events last week. We have more to come in 2016! #rigsafe

 

Gisela Clark
Gisela Clark is an eMarketing Specialist for Columbus McKinnon Corporation.
Pfaff-silberblau Products Perform in “The Miracle of Bern”

Pfaff-silberblau Products Perform in “The Miracle of Bern”

Photo Courtesy of http://www.stage-entertainment.de/

Columbus McKinnon recently supplied Pfaff-silberblau brand products for a new musical venue in Hamburg, Germany. Stage Entertainment constructed the ultra-modern performance venue, “Theater an der Elbe,” capable of holding more than 1,800 spectators for the production of “The Miracle of Bern.”

Stage Entertainment commissioned Columbus McKinnon Engineered Products GmbH, based in Kissing, for the design, project planning and construction of the stage upper machinery and the “iron curtain” for the venue.

For the technical fire-protection equipment and the stage upper machinery, the company invested in tried-and-trusted stage technology from Pfaff-silberblau – our powerful DELTA electromechanical wire rope winches. These winches are designed to move the stage scenery and props quickly and precisely, while ensuring a maximum level of safety for the performers on the stage in accordance with the safety regulations for public performance venues BGV C1 and DIN 56950.

For the daily performances of the musical, more than 28 DELTA winches are used. Designed for loads between 650 kg and 1,500 kg, they move stage scenery and props with a speed of 1.2 m/sec and approximately 8 km of wire rope. The winches are anchored in a fly loft, which Pfaff-silberblau designed, produced and installed to meet specific customer requirements. Altogether, Pfaff-silberblau engineers installed a total of 15 tons of structural steelwork for the theatre’s fly loft. This is a great example of Pfaff’s products at work in a tough and challenging application.

Christie Lagowski
Christie Lagowski is a Communications Specialist for Columbus McKinnon Corporation.
#rigsafe: Promoting Safe Rigging in the Entertainment Industry

#rigsafe: Promoting Safe Rigging in the Entertainment Industry

On Friday, April 24th we celebrated #RigSafe day, an initiative started by the United States Institute for Theatre Technology (USITT) to promote safe rigging in the entertainment industry. USITT asked companies to join the initiative by sharing rigging safety tips on social media under the hashtag #rigsafe.

Columbus McKinnon participated in the event, tweeting our rigging safety tips throughout the day. We received such favorable feedback on the information we shared that we wanted to share them with those of you who may have missed out!

Tip 1: Disconnect the power source.

Before removing end covers on any electric hoist, you MUST turn off and remove the electrical power from the motor. One of the most common mistakes when you’re in a rush is to make a hoist adjustment without disconnecting the power source. If you’re very lucky, you’ll just get a small electric shock, but even a little jolt can be very dangerous and cause injury.

Be sure to turn off the power and disconnect the power cable from the hoist and remember to always use proper lockout tagout procedures.

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Tip 2: Fall protection matters in the entertainment industry.

Choosing a proper harness, finding the anchorage needed and using the proper lanyard for the work area are critical. Work areas constantly change and you need the correct setup to ensure a safe environment in every work area. Take a Master Rigging class to improve your skills and work safe. Learn more: http://owl.li/M2qG7

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Tip 3: Have the proper rescue plan in place.

Without a proven and practiced rescue plan, a situation can become very complicated. If a fall were to take place, the person must be brought down in a safe and timely manner.  Once on the ground, first responders should tend to the victim, then take them to the hospital. No matter their condition, the person must be checked out by medical personnel at the hospital.

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Tip 4: It is never acceptable to choke a round polyester sling to another round sling.

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Shackles or appropriate connectors are the only acceptable method of connecting slings to one another.

theatrical shackle

Tip 5: Inspection and maintenance of rigging systems should be one of the most important safety concerns for a rigger.

Ongoing inspection is key to safe rigging, and safe rigging starts with the manufacturer. The manufacturer will guide you on equipment application and safety practices, training and maintenance procedures. Thank you, Fernando Hernandez from the VER Rigging Division, for sharing this tip with us!

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Read more about USITT’s own rigsafe program.

Herb Hart
Herb Hart is an Area Sales Manager for Entertainment Products for Columbus McKinnon Corporation.
Santa Fe Springs Warehouse and Training Center Serve West Coast Market

Santa Fe Springs Warehouse and Training Center Serve West Coast Market

Santa Fe Exterior

Whether you’re located in the eastern United States or the northwest region of Canada, Columbus McKinnon is nearby. With warehouses located in Atlanta, Georgia; Tonawanda, New York; Edmonton, Alberta and Cobourg, Ontario, Canada; we are strategically located to meet the needs of customers across North America.

Further improving our ability to serve our customers, we recently opened a new warehouse and training center in Santa Fe Springs, California, to ensure product availability and local training for the west coast market.

“With its close proximity to Long Beach Port in California, Santa Fe Springs is strategically located to serve our customers in the entire West Coast market,” said Randy Lewis, General Manager – Warehouse Operations. “With 30,000 square feet, the new warehouse facility has twice the space as our previous location in Santa Fe Springs. That means we can stock more product and in greater volumes.”

The larger facility has not only allowed us to increase standard stock levels of a broader product selection, but also provides a more efficient layout. And, because incoming and outgoing containers can be unloaded more proficiently and inspected thoroughly, our customers receive their product sooner and with fewer errors.

As part of the new warehouse we also opened a training center to meet the growing need and request for CMCO entertainment training classes on the west coast. The space is designed to accommodate larger classes, provide ample room to display product and allow students to get hands-on training with our hoists and rigging equipment. The Santa Fe Springs location also acts as our west coast sales office which means we can service our regional customers better.

Together, our new Santa Fe Springs training center and warehouse will help us better meet the needs of our Channel Partners and end users on the West Coast, ensuring they get the products and training they need when they need it.

Christie Lagowski
Christie Lagowski is a Communications Specialist for Columbus McKinnon Corporation.
Ask Questions, Share Stories, Get Engaged on Social Media

Ask Questions, Share Stories, Get Engaged on Social Media

We decided to shift gears this week and show you a little of what we’ve been up to on social media lately. We have many exciting conversations and interactions happening there every day with our Channel Partners, end users and material handling professionals around the world. All of you reach out to us for different reasons. Here are just a few examples:

  • Some of you have a question you want answered. We received a tweet from a distributor in Mexico who requested special paperwork for border clearance. We got it to him within hours. This was one happy distributor!
  • Others have a cool picture from an exciting concert or event they attended, so we started a collection on Facebook. We love seeing photos from your kid’s sports game or stage performance or while on vacation. If you are lucky enough to get an application story that you can share, we could feature it right here on our blog. Just send it my way!
  • Some of you need expert advice on specific topics. We have addressed many of your questions here. Below are are few of our most popular posts:

Missing Chain Sling ID Tags and who is to Blame
What is the Working Load Limit of a 2 Legged Chain Sling?
The 3 Most Asked Questions from our CM-ET Motor Hoist Schools
Does your Overhead Crane meet OSHA regulations?
Can Lever Tools be Used to Adjust Slings?

  • We also enjoy your tradeshow engagement on Twitter & Facebook and sharing in your fun. Check out these cool beanies from USITT!

IMG_0654 Beanie Cap #3

Beanie Cap #1
Please feel free to reach out to us 24/7 on our social media channels. We are here to promote safety on the job and help you get the answers you need for any of your material handling questions. The first person to engage with us on each of our social media channels below and tell us your favorite CM product and why will receive a CMCO shirt!

(This means 6 winners in total.) We look forward to connecting with you!

Facebook
Twitter (Industrial Products)
Twitter (Entertainment)
LinkedIn
YouTube
Instagram
Google+

Gisela Clark
Gisela Clark is an eMarketing Specialist for Columbus McKinnon Corporation.
Taking Entertainment Rigging Training to New Heights

Taking Entertainment Rigging Training to New Heights

 

1 outdoor trusstilson rope skills

In the entertainment industry, rigging can be both a challenging and dangerous task. To help provide entertainment professionals with hands-on rigging experience, Robert Lannon of RPL Building Services, LLC, kicked off his first Rigging Climbing Camp in June of this year. Sponsored by Atlanta Rigging Systems and held at Southeastern Rope Access Training Facilities in Atlanta, Georgia, the three-day course was designed to teach basic climbing, rigging and aerial platform operation to entertainment professionals to prepare them for real-world rigging scenarios.

“Most of the riggers I know had no training whatsoever the first time they stepped out on a beam, pulled a point or drove a lift,” said Dave Gittens of Atlanta Rigging Systems. “The first place a rigger performs any of those tasks should not be in an arena roof structure. That was the motivation for this class.”

Twelve entertainment professionals attended the camp, including myself and CMCO’s Entertainment Business Development Specialist, Jennifer O’Leary. We kicked off the training by first discussing personal protective equipment, including harnesses, lanyards and helmets, as well as fall protection, structure climbing and beam walking. We also learned rope access techniques, including ascending, changeovers, descending and edge negotiations.

Other critical skills covered during the hands-on training included:

  • Utilizing motor control systems
  • Moving trusses
  • Rope management
  • Rescue pick offs from a structure
  • Aerial platform operation, including scissor and boom lifts

Using a 30 foot truss supplied by Atlanta Rigging, we pulled together everything we learned to conduct beam walks, climb a wire rope ladder, use horizontal life lines and rappel from the top of the structure. As we got more comfortable navigating the structure, product and tasks, you could see everyone push themselves and gain confidence in their skills.

Columbus McKinnon rigging training is a perfect complement to Rigging Climbing Camp, educating attendees on rigging fundamentals, safety practices, regulations and inspection techniques. When paired with the hands-on experience provided by the Rigging Climbing Camp, entertainment professionals will have a well-rounded understanding of proper rigging practices as well as real-life rigging situations and challenges encountered at entertainment venues.

To see our full selection of material handling products for the entertainment industry, visit www.cm-et.com.

Ken Tilson
Ken Tilson is our Entertainment Vertical Market Specialist at Columbus McKinnon Corporation.
The True Meaning of the Name “Lodestar”

The True Meaning of the Name “Lodestar”

Lodestar

Our entertainment trainer, Dave Carmack, travels the world to teach and share important information about entertainment rigging and hoisting safety. At the end of his classes, he likes to stump his students with this question: “Can you tell me why we spell our hoist, LODESTAR, instead of LOADSTAR?”

Dave was asked this question many years ago by a student, which prompted him to do some research. Reaching out to Columbus McKinnon engineers, Dave finally found the answer.

“Lodestar” is defined as a guiding star. In 1955, when the first industrial Lodestar was introduced, many of our hoists had galactic names like Meteor, Satellite, and Comet. It was the first of many unique products that Columbus McKinnon brought to the material handling industry, which also included aluminum hoist frames, the Weston-Type brake, and the first alloy chain.
In a recent CM-ET class, Jamie, a CMCO training course attendee from Canton, Michigan wrote this answer:

“A Lodestar is one that serves as an inspiration, model or guide. The Lodestar hoist was engineered and designed to be a leader and model in the entertainment industry.”

We couldn’t have said it better ourselves!

Want to learn more about entertainment motors? In case you missed it, here is a link to the recording for the session noted below. This is one you won’t want to miss!

Lodestar

Gisela Clark
Gisela Clark is an eMarketing Specialist for Columbus McKinnon Corporation.
D8+ Hoists and Suspending Loads over People in the Entertainment Industry

D8+ Hoists and Suspending Loads over People in the Entertainment Industry

D8+ Hoists

Suspending loads above people is common practice in the entertainment world and requires great precautions. In Europe, one voluntary Code of Practice guides the product specifications and installation requirements surrounding these applications: SQP2 Chain hoists (2010).

U.S. interest in this European Code of Practice is growing as this code is being adopted in U.S. entertainment installations. Our distributor, Atlanta Rigging has recently completed installations at Bankers’s Life Fieldhouse, in Indianapolis, Indiana (shown above) and at the Barclays Center in New York which include D8+ hoists and meet this voluntary European code.

European Code of Practice and the D8+ Code

The SQP2 defines the D8+ as “The D8 Plus Electric chain hoist is constructed and dimensioned in such a way that the moving of overhead loads is possible provided that no persons are standing under the load and that it is not necessary to install safety backups when the hoist is switched off.”

Once the load has been lifted, is in place and the hoist has been switched off, then it is acceptable to suspend the load above people without the secondary support. While the load is moving all personnel should be out from underneath the load.

How the D8+ Code can be attained

The D8+ “code” can be achieved by having a minimum of 10:1 design factor, double brakes and a clutch. The clutch can be used as protection against overloading when the hoists are used for statically determinate loads. A statically determinate load is defined in the SQP2 as a load on individual electric chain hoists (point load), distributed loads on two electric chain hoists, hinged, linked single span girders on more than two electric chain hoists, and distributed loads on three electric chain hoists.

Banker’s Life Fieldhouse Application

Banker’s Life Fieldhouse Application – Indianapolis, Indiana

The Banker’s Life Fieldhouse installation shown utilizes twelve (12) Columbus McKinnon D8+ Model RR Chain Hoists with 123’ of lift. There are two (2) hoists used per speaker line array and a total of six (6) arrays.

The control system, provided by Motion Laboratories, consists of the following: 16‐Channel Controller with Soft Limit System, Touchscreen Handheld Remote and Remote E‐stops.

Learn more about Atlanta Rigging’s installations.

Learn more about the CM-ET Lodestar D8+ electric chain hoist and other entertainment motor and rigging equipment by attending one of our intensive training programs designed for specifically for the entertainment industry.

Art Zobal
Art Zobal is an Application & Product Specialist, for Columbus McKinnon.