What Are the Different Types of Scaffolding Tools?

Dan Cavallari

Several scaffolding tools are necessary to properly erect scaffold sections and secure them in place. Some of the tools are very commonly used ones, such as hammers, ratchet wrenches, crescent wrenches, and so on, while others are specially designed scaffolding tools. One of the most commonly used tools specifically designed for erecting scaffolding is the podger, which is sometimes attached to a hammer or a wrench. This tool is used to adjust scaffolding pipes to line up correctly; the hammer end can be used to force bolts through the bolt holes. If the other end features a ratchet, it can be used to screw in bolts.

Scaffolding workers must not be fearful of heights.
Scaffolding workers must not be fearful of heights.

The podger features a tapered metal bar that may be slightly scooped at its end. Such scaffolding tools can be slid into bolt holes to align pipes properly; the tool can be leveraged by pressing on the other end, and once the bolt holes are lined up, the tool can be taken out and a bolt inserted. Most scaffold erectors will carry this tool with them during construction, as it is a key tool for building the structure properly. Once the bolt is in place, it must be secured using a ratchet wrench, though some people prefer simpler scaffolding tools such as crescent wrenches for this job.

Numerous accidents can occur if the scaffolding structure is not completely stabilized.
Numerous accidents can occur if the scaffolding structure is not completely stabilized.

Almost all workers erecting a scaffolding structure will carry levels, which are scaffolding tools used to ensure the ledgers, or horizontal pipes, are lined up correctly and level with the ground. Ensuring that these pipes are level prevents an uneven structure that can become unstable and fall. The level is usually fairly small and lightweight, and it can be kept in a pocket for storage. Sometimes the level will feature a magnet that secures the unit to the piping to prevent it from falling.

A hammer is a common scaffolding tool.
A hammer is a common scaffolding tool.

Other important scaffolding tools are designed to prevent tools from falling to the ground. Tool belts allow a worker to securely hold tools around the waist when not in use, and leashes can connect the tools to the tool belt or around the wrist to prevent them from falling should the worker lose control of them. Sometimes scaffolding tools are designed to lift materials up to the higher reaches of the structure. Buckets can be attached to scaffolding hoists, which are pulley devices that are sometimes motorized; the hoist features a long cable with a hook at one end that can be secured to the bucket or other materials. When the motor is activated, the pulley turns and the cable retracts, lifting the materials.

Scaffolding tubes are the pipes used to build scaffolds.
Scaffolding tubes are the pipes used to build scaffolds.

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