Raised Platform Design

I have built few sets that involve high platforms such as bridges and dance platforms.

With Noises Off being a show I want to do in the future I have seen a few rear images to access the upper section of the set.

After seeing these I am thinking I have over engineered my platforms as the posts and beams or smaller than I would normally use and not as many cross bracing or as long.
First I thought it may be steel, but with other images it shows lumber of the same size.

Is there any literature, website or advice for designing these type of platforms?
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Van

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It is really hard to tell from those images but I would bet that in the first image the slab above it comprised of rather thick triscuits and the uprights are almost definitely steel. My guess would be the backstage side is supported by lumber but the real load is being carried by wall and the steel on the front side. I built a two level design for Assassins which used Triscuits for the upper deck, Steel posts framed in wood for the appearance of solid posts. and the entire unit got it's horizontal stabilization from the huge staircases at each side. .
I'm sure someone will have more references but there are several books dealing with Structural engineering for the stage If you've got the money you could probably hire someone like Entertainment Structures to review you design. They tend to be backed up and more expense than most theatres can afford.
 

JohnD

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Here are a couple of threads you might find handy:

 

TimMc

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Premium Member
It amazes me with the wobbly stuff actors will gladly 'act' upon, but put a stationary symphony player on a riser that has any deflection or movement and they run off their union steward. Not saying musicians should tolerate unsafe conditions, rather that actors WILL, until somebody gets hurt.
 

almorton

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When we did Noises off our set was built entirely from timber, and it did not wobble. You can see it in the show photos here.

Admittedly, our stage is a bit smaller than the ones above, so less set to move, and the central part of it fitted onto our revolve.
 
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It is really hard to tell from those images but I would bet that in the first image the slab above it comprised of rather thick triscuits and the uprights are almost definitely steel. My guess would be the backstage side is supported by lumber but the real load is being carried by wall and the steel on the front side. I built a two level design for Assassins which used Triscuits for the upper deck, Steel posts framed in wood for the appearance of solid posts. and the entire unit got it's horizontal stabilization from the huge staircases at each side. .
I'm sure someone will have more references but there are several books dealing with Structural engineering for the stage If you've got the money you could probably hire someone like Entertainment Structures to review you design. They tend to be backed up and more expense than most theatres can afford.
Thanks for putting me onto triscuits even though my original search result was a form of cracker.
Found this link that helps as well.
I have also ordered the book.

 
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Van

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Thanks for putting me onto triscuits even though my original search result was a form of cracker.
Found this link that helps as well.
I have also ordered the book.

The "Texas" Triscuit, is the version I've always used. Perhaps it's something about being from Oklahoma originally but, I just can't bring myself to add the Texas. I believe the first paper I ever saw published about them was from Yale. Using the stud/pony wall system really speeds up assembly and tear down. I used to keep a stock of ponies for 12. 18, 24" flat platforms and a 1/2"/1' rake. They didn't take up too much room and you just buld whatever weird sizes the Designer throws at you.

Well, I'm glad I could help introduce you to something new! Remember to show us your results. I always love to see the finished projects on stage.
 

Jay Ashworth

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Obligatory "if you're asking us, you're not the person to certify the design and the build" comment.

And note that this does not conflict with the observation in Van's .sig.
:)
 

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