Geda tackles scaffolding challenges
By Euan Youdale25 April 2022
Few sectors of the construction industry are as challenging and complex as scaffolding, writes Kazimierz Wasilczyk, divisional sales manager, at hoist specialist Geda. Of course, they seem like simple projects, but scaffolding requires a vast amount of expertise.
One of the greatest challenges is the shortage of skilled and unskilled workers. Many companies, not only in the scaffolding sector, are faced with this problem today. In view of the booming construction industry, there is no let-up in sight as wages have to be increased to attract and retain employees.
Health and safety
Industrial legislation necessary and important, but many regulations that support employees come at the employer’s expense.
In light of such changes to industrial laws, scaffolding companies have to budget for additional costs for every existing job. The safety standards that must be met, not just at large construction sites and in industrial settings, but also at smaller worksites, are continuing to increase.
This generates costs and reduces the profit margin. The costs for personal protective equipment alone are much higher than a few years ago, even when the inflation rate is taken into account. Therefore, significantly higher sums must be invested in employee safety to protect the workforce and benefit from it in the long term.
The topics of considerate building sites and the health of employees are increasingly becoming the focus of responsible companies in the construction sector. Carrying heavy loads over many years often has a negative impact on the health of employees, resulting in absence from work, in particular due to back pain.
Logistics & transport
Vertical transport at a construction site has to be quick and easy - with this the economic efficiencies increase. This is a very simple formula, which is not always that simple in practice as transporting scaffolding elements can be time consuming and complex. Many employees have to work together to transport the elements up or down.
However, the right equipment can produce enormous time savings here, fewer mistakes are made and the transport processes become safer.
A customer survey conducted by GEDA showed that these challenges occur throughout the scaffolding industry. While these vary from Germany and throughout the Scandinavian Peninsula and the UK down to the countries on the Iberian Peninsula, the core issue remains the same.
The question is how to tackle these problems. We believe that the results of the survey clearly indicate that the solution can partially be found in the use of vertical transport equipment. An experienced scaffolding company with a number of wire rope hoists and material hoists can stay ahead of competitors who are equipped only with human resources and maybe tools such as manual winches.
Included in Geda’s relevent product range is the Mini/Maxi. Offering two lifting speeds, overload protection and a slack rope switch, as well as a variety of load handling devices, the handy rope drum drive is easily mounted at the base of the scaffolding. The lightweight swivel arm is attached at the top of the scaffolding at the desired height. Maximum working height is 40m and 76m with a winch placed at a greater height.
The Mini 60 S, Maxi 120 S and Maxi 150 S feature a load capacity of up to 150kg. In addition to scaffolders, they are used by roofers and painters for transporting materials on the scaffolding. A variety of different load handling devices and accessories allow for flexible and efficient transport of scaffolding elements, painting supplies and insulation.
The Mini/Maxi series of wire rope lifts also includes a convenient transport frame. The scaffolding hoist is mounted safely with a quick-release mechanism and can be mounted onto the scaffolding directly within the transport frame. The robust undercarriage is suitable for any foundation.
While wire rope lifts are ideally suited for the assembly of smaller scaffolds, pure material lifts such as the 200 Z and 300 Z construction hoists are designed for higher load capacities and are ideal for larger scaffolding structures.