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Aluminum scaffolding has a number of advantages over some other types of scaffolding. Most of the advantages relate to the ease of the use and the portability. When moving between different job sites, it is necessary to find a material that is light weight and portable. Further, aluminum scaffolding also offers easy set up in many cases, especially compared to wood. It is also less inclined to crack, which may give it better durability when compared to wood and fiberglass.
Aluminum scaffolding can also be very stable, though the supports must be of sufficient diameter and quality in order to get maximum stability. The best scaffolding will have reinforced joints, and be rated for significantly more weight than it would expected to support during typical use. This improved strength to weight ratio will add further stability.
In addition to being easier to carry, the weight of aluminum scaffolding is very important in other ways. In the case of a suspended, or swingstage, scaffold, the device is suspended by ropes or chains above the ground. The more the scaffolding weighs, the more supports will be needed to hold it. This is one reason why aluminum scaffolding is often used in this type of application. The more the scaffolding weighs, the more danger it poses for the workers.
In the case of suspended scaffolding, the weight also poses other problems. Often, this type of scaffold is used for washing windows and working on the sides of glass structures that could be easily damaged. The aluminum scaffolding's lighter weight will help ensure there is less potential for damage. In some cases, the sides will even include rubber wheels, which provide further protection against delicate surfaces.
After aluminum scaffolding is taken to a job site, it can then be carried and set up easily. In many cases, the aluminum support rails will be jointed with movable pieces. This allows the scaffolding to be folded and unfolded quickly. Once the main piece is unfolded, the platform can then be simply put into place. To further aid the portability, many aluminum scaffolds will also come with wheels. While fiberglass also offers this advantage, wood does not.
The other factor to consider that may provide an advantage for aluminum scaffolding is the cost. When compared fiberglass and wood, aluminum may be the cheapest option. Even if it is only a little less per piece, most construction sites require a great deal of scaffolding, so the cost savings may be quite substantial in the end.
I have worked on both metal and aluminum scaffolding and they both have their place depending on what they of work you are doing with it.
I had a part time window cleaning service and much preferred working off scaffolding than a ladder. The aluminum scaffold was much more light weight and easier to carry around from job to job.
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