Advice: Truss and Chain Motors

Hi all, I’m looking to rig a 60’ truss supported by 4 chain motors. The company I’m working with is looking to buy, not rent. I’ve never purchased rigging equipment and so wanted to reach out and see where I should look for truss, and what your suggestions are for which chain motors are the best or what to look for. Once it is set up we will have a licensed rigger double check and sign off on everything, I just need to send in a purchase order.
 

TimMc

Well-Known Member
Premium Member
One of the cardinal rules is to not offer specific rigging advice on public forums... so I'll offer some general rigging advice: get a professional - rigger, structural engineer, architect - involved before you commit to purchasing specific items. Without knowing anything about the load or the suitability or means of attachment to structure, or how high the lift, etc, you'll find it difficult to get appropriate guidance, so the use-case for the truss and hoists needs details.
 

MNicolai

Well-Known Member
Premium Member
Fight Leukemia
Many places that will sell you truss and motors will also have an ETCP rigger who can help you out.

By the way, there is no such thing as a "licensed rigger". There are certified riggers and licensed structural engineers, but no professional licensure exists for entertainment rigging.
 

What Rigger?

I'm so fly....I Neverland.
Copy! Thanks for the push in the right direction. I can't afford to get this wrong!
This is true.
@PrioryTheatre, where specifically are you in the "Bay Area"? A quick Google search shows some options for suppliers, but if you're East Bay I'd rather not send you toward someone in Santa Cruz.
Can I infer you're with Woodside Priory? Anyway, let us know so we can make recommendations if we know people near you.
 
I was with Woodside Priory, haha! This project is for Sacred Heart School in Atherton! I sent my TD to Stage Rigging Inc. I haven't seen them post anything since 2020, and their website does not work, and so I am hoping they are still there. I am also having him check with Musson Theatrical. Yes, who would you recommend! I am also looking at learning this material and have found a basic rigging course through American Crane and Safety. Is there a course you would recommend to start learning this material?
 

What Rigger?

I'm so fly....I Neverland.
Okay, @PrioryTheatre let's go:

Get your rigger involved first. This will save you money and frustration, because you need that experienced set of eyes on site to see the problems you can't. It will absolutley be quicker and cheaper this way. If you buy all the gear ahead of time and install it yourself and it's wrong (hint: it will be, in some fashion), I can't imagine someone rolling in and signing off on something they didn't spec or install. Then on top of that you have to pay the extra funds to buy or fix what gear you've got, and the time it takes to make corrections. Which in turn costs more money. Get a rigger from the start, and this will make for greater percentage of success on the first try.
https://www.stagelightsandsound.com/
https://www.declercqs.com/about-us/

These are a couple companies in the 415. I don't know anyone there personally, but maybe it's a jumping off point for you.
American Crane and Safety could be a way to get your feet wet, however- industrial rigging does not always, nor consistently equate to stage rigging. The average crane company never touches what we do, and I find it a little odd that although they display an ETCP badge on their class page, they don't say who the person(s) teaching the class are. Find out, and cross reference them on the ESTA website under the ETCP tile.

You want to learn more: good. Find a real live human to connect with. You cannot learn it all from reading or online materials- that's a pretty good way to wind up accidentally in "knows just enough to be dangerous" territory. Nobody likes that, right? Right.
Here's some suggestions:
The Stage Rigging Handbook, 3rd edition, by Jay O. Glerum
Entertainment Rigging, Revised and Expanded 2nd edition by Harry Donovan. Yes, it's really 100 bucks. You might find it on sale for 90. Don't fall for these wackadoodles on Amazon selling it for $400.

Delbert Hall's book is excellent. I think he even shows up around here occasionally. There's a workbook sold separately for practice putting these equations to use.

Free Stuff:

Watch everything Bill Sapsis has ever put out. You'll get your blind mown:
https://sapsis-rigging.com/remoteseminars.html

Delong Rigging Solutions offers excellent content, and I highly recommend it.
https://www.delongriggingsolutions.com/one-shot-training/

Check out our own @egilson1 and his company ERS. I highly recommend the podcast at the very least.
http://entertainmentriggingservices.com/index.html

Chicago Fly House has a great YouTube page:
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCHnZjB4DpKLWfhK9W94LUIw

And then, if you're talking about working at height: how's your fall protection program? Are you sure it's up to speed?

Keep coming back. We're here to help, but the Forbidden Zone is found in giving specifics instructions/solutions to online rigging problems. Without seeing things in person, we can't advise specifically. But ask anyway- that's the only way to know if we can or can't contribute.
 

MPowers

Well-Known Member
Okay, @PrioryTheatre let's go:

Get your rigger involved first. This will save you money and frustration, because you need that experienced set of eyes on site to see the problems you can't. It will absolutley be quicker and cheaper this way. If you buy all the gear ahead of time and install it yourself and it's wrong (hint: it will be, in some fashion), I can't imagine someone rolling in and signing off on something they didn't spec or install. Then on top of that you have to pay the extra funds to buy or fix what gear you've got, and the time it takes to make corrections. Which in turn costs more money. Get a rigger from the start, and this will make for greater percentage of success on the first try.
https://www.stagelightsandsound.com/
https://www.declercqs.com/about-us/

These are a couple companies in the 415. I don't know anyone there personally, but maybe it's a jumping off point for you.
American Crane and Safety could be a way to get your feet wet, however- industrial rigging does not always, nor consistently equate to stage rigging. The average crane company never touches what we do, and I find it a little odd that although they display an ETCP badge on their class page, they don't say who the person(s) teaching the class are. Find out, and cross reference them on the ESTA website under the ETCP tile.

You want to learn more: good. Find a real live human to connect with. You cannot learn it all from reading or online materials- that's a pretty good way to wind up accidentally in "knows just enough to be dangerous" territory. Nobody likes that, right? Right.
Here's some suggestions:
The Stage Rigging Handbook, 3rd edition, by Jay O. Glerum
Entertainment Rigging, Revised and Expanded 2nd edition by Harry Donovan. Yes, it's really 100 bucks. You might find it on sale for 90. Don't fall for these wackadoodles on Amazon selling it for $400.

Delbert Hall's book is excellent. I think he even shows up around here occasionally. There's a workbook sold separately for practice putting these equations to use.

Free Stuff:

Watch everything Bill Sapsis has ever put out. You'll get your blind mown:
https://sapsis-rigging.com/remoteseminars.html

Delong Rigging Solutions offers excellent content, and I highly recommend it.
https://www.delongriggingsolutions.com/one-shot-training/

Check out our own @egilson1 and his company ERS. I highly recommend the podcast at the very least.
http://entertainmentriggingservices.com/index.html

Chicago Fly House has a great YouTube page:
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCHnZjB4DpKLWfhK9W94LUIw

And then, if you're talking about working at height: how's your fall protection program? Are you sure it's up to speed?

Keep coming back. We're here to help, but the Forbidden Zone is found in giving specifics instructions/solutions to online rigging problems. Without seeing things in person, we can't advise specifically. But ask anyway- that's the only way to know if we can or can't contribute.
I second each of the recommendations listed.
 

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