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Need adivce to brake and move platforms in unison

Discussion in 'Scenery, Props, and Rigging' started by systmofadroid, Apr 29, 2009.

  1. systmofadroid

    systmofadroid Member

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    Location:
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    I am working on our production of Miss Witherspoon and can not figure out a good solution to have 3 platforms on track move in unison from one wing to another and have them be able to brake without much human interaction onstage.


    The three upstage platforms are on 6" rigid casters and will move from SL to SR.

    They are all on the same track

    They need to be able to move in unison, so when one platform moves to the wings the other two shift in the same direction, still visible on the stage.

    I have put down track on the deck to follow the center row of casters on each of the platforms.

    I have two challenges:

    1. How to brake the platforms without the need to have a person physically kick up or undo a lock on the stage floor (another words to have the platforms lock in place without a crew/actor visibly doing it.)

    2. How to link the platforms together and be put in motion from the wings.

    I have attached the ground plan, if anyone would like to take a stab at my challenge.

    Thanks
     

    Attached Files:

  2. feedbackdj

    feedbackdj Member

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    Link them via a cable of some sort. You'll have to pull them on and off but with the cables cut to the same distance this should work. Also, can you put a "stop" of some sort in the track? Go into the house and get your sight lines and, with the flats in the spot, simply use a block of something to stop them in the track. Just some thoughts...
     
  3. Footer

    Footer Senior Team Senior Team Premium Member

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    Pneumatic brakes. Pneumatic solenoids with a tank works really well. You will still need someone to operate them, but they can be operated with a simple switch. As far as the tracking thing goes, I assume your track is mounted above the deck, not in the deck?

    [​IMG]
     
  4. Traitor800

    Traitor800 Active Member

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    Footer, what solenoids do you use?
    -Chris
     
  5. themuzicman

    themuzicman Well-Known Member

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    I second footer.
    If you track it on angle iron, with some v-groove casters, and use pneumatics, it should all go well.
     
  6. Footer

    Footer Senior Team Senior Team Premium Member

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    McMaster-Carr

    Be sure to buy the ones with the spring return, otherwise it becomes a bit of a pain to get working. I don't remember the part number off the top of my head, but they also make feet that will screw to the bottom to give a bit more stopping power.
     
  7. FatherMurphy

    FatherMurphy Active Member

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    I've also heard of using electromagnets as remote controlled wagon brakes, either the magnet on the wagon and a steel plate in the floor, or vice versa, depending on what's easiest to wire up.

    Magnet in floor might be easiest, with some sort of telescoping, spring loaded steel box on the wagon. Power on, magnet pulls down inner box, power off, springs pull inner box clear of deck.

    Not sure what the noise factor would be, or what it might do to wireless mics/audio in general.
     

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