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Tiffin Scenic's Restrictor Rope Lock

Discussion in 'USITT 2013' started by gafftaper, Mar 28, 2013.

  1. gafftaper

    gafftaper Senior Team Senior Team Fight Leukemia

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    Theater Manager & T.D.
    Seattle, Washington
    Here's a very clever safety device called the Restrictor Rope Lock that you may want to consider installing. Out of weight line sets will not move unless you prove to the Restrictor that you can handle the excessive weight.

    Here's a link to a product information sheet from Tiffin Scenic.
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 15, 2013
  2. KensAudio

    KensAudio Member

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    I work at a college where students and outside clients are often roaming around. It occurred to us that our linesets are just about the only things capable of death which aren't secured by key (when the space is open). This is something that our Risk Management office would love for us to have.

    So I've been reading the materials and watched the video, and heard from my boss who saw it at the show...
    But does anyone have any working knowledge of it installed? Any anecdotes? Observations? Install challenges? Reviews? Critiques? I can't seem to find anything on the webernet that wasn't supplied by the manufacturer. (I'm not dissing Tiffen; "Trust, but Verify".)

    Thanks in advance.
    - Ken Porter
    - Associate Technical Director
    - Sorenson Center for the Arts
    - Babson College
  3. BillConnerFASTC

    BillConnerFASTC Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    Theatre Consultant
    Oak Park, IL (708)983-5792
    I always thought they were a bit of a pain to operate but then I always check to see if the set I balanced before I open the lock. In general, I'm not a fan of designs that try to utterly fool proof a system - the fool proof vs damn fool proof argument.

    Clancy has the Sure Lock which does the same thing as Tiffins.

    Most rope locks have a hasp or place for a pad lock or lock out tag. We do specify cable locks for most high schools - so they can run a cable lock though the hasp on the rope locks - and even selectively leave a few sets off the cable.

    In the end - balance, balance, balance. And castrate the idiots that leave out the loading bridge.
  4. MPowers

    MPowers Well-Known Member

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    Des Moines, Iowa
    Amen to your solution for architects who think saving cost by omitting the bridge is a GOOD idea!

    My main issue with Restrictor type rope locks is that I believe they promote poor training and teach bad weight management. Then when students move on to systems with conventional rope locks, those poor habits can lead to accidents.
  5. 65535

    65535 Active Member

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    Also doesn't take fatigue into account, maybe you can handle that out of balance for 5 feet, 10 feet, even 20 feet. If you get fatigued it still won't help. I've been satisfied with our JR Clancy Sure Lock units. Though if these rope locks can handle 1200lbs that is pretty impressive in itself, and they look like they have a smooth action which is nice.

    They definitely have a nice product but I think their main selling point is one that should be worked around with training not safety devices alone.

    I like the lock out function too.
  6. Footer

    Footer Senior Team Senior Team Premium Member

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    Saratoga Springs, NY
    I worked with some first generation a long time ago. Do these things still have the issues of clogging on spike tape?

    My feeling has always been if your concerned about inexperienced operators on the rail you need to either install automation or just dead hang. If you can't afford the training and the supervision you should not have it.
  7. Calc

    Calc Active Member

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    We replaced a few of our locks with these 5 or 6 years ago, so I'm not sure if they're the same generation as this or not. They work just as advertised, but I wasn't overly impressed. We put them on the linesets we typically use as electrics.
    Do I mind them? Not at all. I've never had a problem with them. But at least in our use case, I don't think they were worth the extra money to us. At around $1k each (I think?), we decided that funds were better spent elsewhere.
  8. derekleffew

    derekleffew Resident Curmudgeon Senior Team Premium Member

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    Las Vegas, NV, USA
    As said above, if your primary concern is preventing unauthorized use, there are more economical options.

    The Restrictor's primary purpose is to prevent a runaway, which it can be argued won't happen with competent personnel. The keylock is secondary.

    The Tiffin version I used in the 1980s was unsatisfactory. Slack in the line would cause it to lock, tape and ribbon spike s could trigger it, and most annoying, it used a foot pedal as a deadman. If I had to specify today for a non-professional venue, I would look at a traditional rope lock that has the provision for a padlock's hasp (and I think almost all modern ones do) and a JR CLancy SureStop Headblock or similar.
  9. DuckJordan

    DuckJordan Well-Known Member

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    Doesnt matter
    We had concerns where the restrictor would think that it was a run-away but instead was just a really fast pull. We haven't had a chance to try it out yet but I haven't heard of a single rope restrictor that will allow us the full speed some of the pulls require.

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