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What Are the Different Types of Scaffolding Equipment?

Scaffolding platforms allow workers to safely stand and walk on a structure.
Scaffolding workers must not be fearful of heights.
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  • Written By: Lori Kilchermann
  • Edited By: Lauren Fritsky
  • Images By: Andrewprosser, Ozz13X
  • Last Modified Date: 09 September 2014
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There are several types of scaffolding in use on construction sites, and each distinct type requires specific scaffolding equipment. A few of the many types of scaffolding equipment are scaffolding frames, supports and platforms. There are also planks, ropes and pulleys used in some types of scaffolding. Special scaffolding equipment, such as rolling supports, allows the scaffolding to be rolled alongside of the project being worked on, thereby eliminating the need for the scaffolding to be torn down and moved as the project requires the workers to move along the site. Cement blocks are often hung on the lower elevations of a scaffolding tower to prevent the tower from tipping over while it is being constructed.

Scaffolding is a series of sections stacked on top of each other with a work platform spanning the individual sections. Workers, such as block and brick masons, metal siding and various other types of siding installers, often use the scaffolding equipment to reach the upper regions of a job site. Each section of the traditional free-standing scaffolding requires several pieces of scaffolding equipment to complete the section. Two scaffolding frames are connected by two crossed support poles on each end and a work platform or wooden planks spanning the section that a worker can operate from. The typical stack of scaffolding used to reach the upper regions of a blocking or bricking job can often require dozens of individual sections to complete the stack.

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On some job sites such as the erection of a steel building, scaffolding equipment is commonly perched upon a special rolling foundation to allow the workers to move the scaffolding tower along the side of the building as sections are completed. This saves valuable time by not having to tear down and reassemble the tower of scaffolding equipment in order to reach new areas that require siding to be installed. Some hanging scaffolding requires the use of ropes and pulleys to lower the scaffolding down from the top of a structure to reach an area that requires work.

The suspended scaffolding is typically constructed from a single platform suspended from a rope on each end and a pulley system to lower and raise the platform. This system can include scaffolding equipment such as electric or gasoline-powered motors to pull the platform up, or it can be hand-operated. Aerial scaffolding uses special scaffolding equipment that attaches the platform to a crane to raise the workers high up to elevated work sites.

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