PPE-volution – How the Golden Gate Bridge Inspired PPE

America’s Industrial Revolution and ingenuity brought about many important advances in worker safety and PPE (Personal Protection Equipment).

At the start of the American Industrial Revolution, worker safety and health were nowhere near the priority they are today. As manufacturing grew, so too did worker injuries and deaths. The idea of safe work grew slowly from a small glimmer to a bright flame inside the collective consciousness of the American workforce.

Although the creation of OSHA regulations was many decades away, the evolution of PPE progressed on its own with the creation of new types of protective devices and advancements in pre-existing devices. Much of this early PPE had a major influence on worker safety’s advancement and will continue to do so.

Hard-Headed PPE Golden Gate Bridge
San Francisco’s Golden Gate Bridge, built in 1933, is an excellent early example of PPE’s influence on safety. Constructing a cable-suspension bridge that was 4,200 feet long was a task that had not been attempted before, one that presented many hazards. The project’s chief engineer, Joseph Strauss, was committed to making its construction as safe as possible.

The bridge’s construction played a particularly significant role in the successful development of one form PPE: It was the first major project that required all of its workers to wear hard hats. Although the hard hat was in its infancy at the time, head protection wasn’t new; gold miners had learned long before the importance of taking steps to protect against falling debris. Michael Lloyd, head protection manager at Bullard – a company in business since 1898, said many early miners wore bowler hats, which were hard felt hats with rounded crowns. Often dubbed “Iron Hats,” these were stuffed with cotton to create a cushioning barrier against blows.

Inspired by the design of his “doughboy” Army helmet, Edward Bullard returned home from World War I and began designing what was to become known as the “hard-boiled hat.” The hat was made of layered canvas that was steamed to impregnate it with resin, sewn together, and varnished into its molded shape. Bullard was awarded the patent in 1919. Later that year, the Navy approached Bullard with a request for some sort of head protection for its shipyard workers. The hat’s first internal suspension was added to increase its effectiveness, and the product’s use quickly spread to lumber workers, utility workers, and construction workers. By the time of the Hoover Dam’s construction in 1931, many workers were voluntarily wearing the headgear. Soon after, the Golden Gate Bridge construction provided a true test of the hard hat’s protective capability because falling rivets were one of the major dangers during the project.

Other innovations came in the form of different materials. In 1938, Bullard released the first aluminum hard hat. It was more durable and comfortable, but it conducted electricity and did not hold up well to the elements. In the ’40s, phenolic hats became available as a predecessor to fiberglass hats. Thermoplastics became the preferred material a decade later for many head protection products; it’s still used by many manufacturers today.
PPE-Hard-hats
From Left to right: Vintage Bullard Miners hats, Vintage Bullard Hard Boiled Hard Hat 1930’s (Used on the Golden Gate Bridge Project, Hard Boiled aluminum Safety hard hat w/Liner and a current day hard hat

In 1953, Bullard introduced the process of injection-molded hats. “Before, [thermoplastic] was kind of laid out on a mold. In the injection-mold process you actually have a closed mold that you pump into. It makes a more consistent helmet and a higher-quality product, which in the long run is also going to be the same thickness all the way through. It’s going to be a safer helmet,” Lloyd said.

Despite the hard hat’s effectiveness and relatively low cost, its use wasn’t officially required at most job sites until the passage of the Occupational Safety and Health Act in 1970. OSHA’s head protection standard, 1910.135, obligated employees to protect workers and instructed manufacturers and employers to turn to the American National Standards Institute’s Z89.1 standard for the appropriate usage guidelines.

Many new materials have since been created, such as the use of General Electric’s high-heat-resistant polyphthalate-carbonate resin in firefighters’ helmets. New hard hats have been designed that provide side protection, which are designated type 2 hats in ANSI Z89.1. “A hard hat was originally designed to protect if something falls from that sky and hits you in the head,” Lloyd said. “But what happens if you run into something? What happens if you bend over and something hits your helmet?”

Because hard hats are a mature market, except for the development of other materials, most innovations will be comfort features and technologies enabling them to withstand different temperature extremes, Lloyd predicted. Easier-to-use designs are appearing that allow users to adjust a hard hat’s suspension with one hand. In the last couple of years, manufacturers have come up with different types of vented helmets designed to help workers keep cool. Hats are accessorized with attachable face shields, visors, and ear muffs, and some have perspiration-absorbing liners. Some come with AM/FM radios, walkie-talkies, and camcorders.

Netting a Safe Return
Although primitive by today’s standards, the solution for the problem of falls also was addressed during construction of the Golden Gate Bridge. Three years into the construction, delays had convinced Strauss to invest more than $130,000 (these were Depression-era dollars, remember) on a vast net similar to those used in a circus. Suspended under the bridge, it extended 10 feet wider and 15 feet farther than the bridge itself. This gave workers the confidence to move quickly across the slippery steel construction. There were reports of workers being threatened with immediate dismissal if found purposely diving into the net.

Strauss’ net was heralded as a huge success until the morning of Feb. 16, 1937, when the west side of a stripping platform bearing a crew of 11 men broke free from its moorings. After tilting precariously for a moment, the other side broke free and the platform collapsed into the net, which contained two other crew members who were scraping away debris. One platform worker, Tom Casey, managed to jump and grab a bridge beam before the platform fell; he hung there until rescued. The net held the platform and the others for a few seconds before it ripped and fell into the water. Two of the 12 men who fell survived.

Read the original article here.

At Hercules SLR we provide a wide range of PPE solutions, from Lanyards and harnesses, to hard hats and rescue equipment.  We also repair, service and certify PPE equipment. We stock leading industry brands and can provide you with expert advise on your PPE options depending on your project. Call us on 1-877-461-4876 for more information.

———————————————————————————————————————————————————

Hercules SLR is part of the Hercules Group of Companies which offers a unique portfolio of businesses nationally with locations from coast to coast. Our companies provide an extensive coverage of products and services that support the success of a wide range of business sectors across Canada including the energy, oil & gas, manufacturing, construction, aerospace, infrastructure, utilities, oil and gas, mining and marine industries.

Hercules Group of Companies is comprised of: Hercules SLRHercules Machining & Millwright ServicesSpartan Industrial MarineStellar Industrial Sales and Wire Rope Atlantic.

Are the Technicians Inspecting your Gear Qualified?

LEEA Header

LEEA – Lifting Standards Worldwide™

Hercules Inspectors are LEEA trained nationally. LEEA, the Lifting Equipment Engineers Association is the respected and authoritative representative body for those who work in every aspect of the industry, from design, manufacture, refurbishment and repair, through to the hire, maintenance and use of lifting equipment.

The next time your equipment is due for inspection, make sure Hercules SLR is your first choice for expert advice and service.

Credentials

Established across the globe LEEA has over 1170 member companies based in 69 countries. Hercules SLR is proud to be one of them.

LEEA has played a key role in this specialized field for over seventy years, from training and standards setting through to health and safety, the provision of technical and legal advice, and the development of examination and licensing systems.

LEEA represents all its members at the highest levels across a range of both public and private bodies, including various government departments, as well as nationally and internationally recognized professional and technical institutions.

LEEA are ISO 9001:2015 registered and an Associate Member of DROPS (Dropped Objects Prevention Scheme).

LEEA is actively involved in all aspects of the industry, promoting the highest technical and safety standards and offering a wide range of services and support to their Members worldwide.

History of the Association

The origins of the Lifting Equipment Engineers Association (LEEA) can be traced back to wartime Britain in 1943; a small group of competing companies came together to address what they perceived as a serious threat to their livelihoods. On 3rd June, nine people representing eight chain testing houses met at the Great Eastern Hotel, near Liverpool Street Station, and the idea to form an association to take on the might of government was conceived. Several weeks later, a draft set of rules and regulations was drawn up. During that process, a decision was made that, regardless of size, all members should be considered equal, both in terms of influence and financial contribution and the annual subscription was set at £4 and 4 shillings (£4.20).
The London Chain Testers Association was the name chosen by the founding members and was a clear reflection of the nature and location of the businesses involved. However, evidence shows that as this small group quickly made headway in negotiations with the government, attention turned to other areas where it was felt that co-operative action could be of mutual benefit. These included exploring the potential for pricing agreements, block insurance, the use of collective purchasing to secure more favourable deals from manufacturers, and adherence to British Standards to improve quality and consistency within the industry.By 1946, the association’s geographical boundaries expanded. Members were now actively sought from across the country, a move highlighted by a change of name to The Chain Testers Association of Great Britain.With the immediate concerns of a wartime economy behind them, the following decades of the 20th century can be seen as a series of landmarks that would ultimately establish the association as an authority on safe lifting and the industry’s foremost provider of training and qualifications for the test, examination and maintenance of overhead lifting equipment. Milestones in this period included:

  • The publication of the Chain Testers’ Handbook in 1953. Predominantly the work of Mr. C H A McCaully of W&E Moore, this brought together for the first time all the essential information required by the ‘man at the bench’ – the chain tester.
  • In 1959 it was followed by the examination scheme for lifting equipment engineers. In 1981, the Code of Practice for the Safe Use of Lifting Equipment (COPSULE) was launched.
  • In 1983, training courses were introduced to prepare students for exams that are now sat by several hundred candidates around the world every year.

Towards the end of the 20th century, important developments took place within the association’s infrastructure, and the nature of member companies changed to include a far wider range of activities. Notable events include the set-up of the organisation’s first independent office in 1977, and a third name change—to the Lifting Equipment Engineers Association in 1988.

With the introduction of the Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations (LOLER) in 1998, LEEA’s training, qualifications and publications had to be fundamentally reworked to reflect this new legislation, and the association’s support and guidance became even more important to members obliged to comply with the requirements of the new legislation.

This legislative upheaval combined with the all-pervasive impact of globalisation, and an absence of sector-specific health and safety legislation—so, many companies who operated in these parts of the world began to adopt LOLER as best practice, which further enhanced the appeal of LEEA membership.

Since the turn of the century, LEEA’s development has reflected these trends and milestones have included:

Iran-Liftex-Exhibition-2018-Elevators-Industrial-Tehran-Iran

  • In 2006, The launch of the LiftEx trade show;
  • In 2007, the move to new headquarters and a purpose-built training centre, an ever increasing portfolio of practical courses to complement online distance learning provision;
  • In 2009, the introduction of the TEAM card registration and identity scheme for qualified engineers and technicians.

Perhaps the most striking is LEEA’s transformation into a truly international body. Regardless of where they are based, there is now no distinction between members – all are subject to the same technical audits prior to being granted full membership, with regular follow-up visits as long as they wish to remain part of the association. Dedicated local groups are now operating in the Middle East and Australia, and LEEA staff have become globetrotters, regularly meeting existing and potential members, as well as a host of other stakeholders, right across the world.

Learn more about LEEA on their website here.

——————————————————————————————————————————————————-

Hercules SLR is part of the Hercules Group of Companies which offers a unique portfolio of businesses nationally with locations from coast to coast. Our companies provide an extensive coverage of products and services that support the success of a wide range of business sectors across Canada including the energy, oil & gas, manufacturing, construction, aerospace, infrastructure, utilities, oil and gas, mining and marine industries.

Hercules Group of Companies is comprised of: Hercules SLRHercules Machining & Millwright ServicesSpartan Industrial MarineStellar Industrial Sales and Wire Rope Atlantic.

A Brief History of Elevator Wire Ropes

The humble hoisting rope occupies a unique place in the history of vertical transportation. A simple hemp rope lies at the center of one of the best-known elevator stories — Elisha Graves Otis’ demonstration of his Improved Safety Device at the 1854 Crystal Palace in New York City.

Currently, a sophisticated carbon nanotube “rope” is the primary innovation driving the conceptual (and possibly literal) development of the proposed “space elevator”. However, the wire rope retains pride-of-place in elevator history as the longest-serving suspension means. It is the subject of numerous 19th-century articles that questioned its safety, and has been featured in countless contemporary books, movies and TV programs that predicate disaster on its failure. Today, we look at the introduction of wire elevator ropes in the 19th century and its development into the 20th century.

The invention of wire rope more-or-less paralleled the invention of the passenger elevator, and, by the 1870s, wire rope had become the rope of choice for elevator use. Since they were new, both the elevator and wire rope faced similar challenges regarding safety concerns. The older hemp hoisting rope had a long history of use, and its strengths and weaknesses were well known. However, a rope made of wire was an entirely different matter. This difference was effectively summarized in the June 22, 1878, issue of American Architect and Building News, which included a brief article on elevator ropes. The article expressed the primary concern in its opening sentence:

“The sudden introduction in our large cities of elevators, most of which are hung by wire ropes, has led people to wonder what will happen when they have had a year’s wear, and why there should not, after a while, be a breaking of ropes, and consequent accidents all over the country.”

The key concern centered on the endurance of wire rope and its reaction to constant and repeated bending as it passed around winding drums and over sheaves. One of the aforementioned article’s key assumptions was that “everybody knows, at least, that reiterated bending weakens wire, whether it be by granulation or by the constant extension of its fibers.” The challenge was, in spite of “knowing” that this action occurred, there was no easy way to judge when a rope was no longer safe for use.

The ICS author also addressed rope replacement, noting that “particular attention must be given to the fastenings.” The chief recommendation was to “carefully reproduce the joint as it was originally made” by the elevator manufacturer. A typical shackle used by Otis Elevator is described below in figure 1.

Figure 1: “Otis Elevator Co. Shackle,” ICS Reference Library (1902).

It consists of a split rod, the two legs A, A of which are bulged out and provided with noses at the ends. A collar B straddles the legs and eventually abuts against the noses. The rope is brought through the collar, bent over a thimble C, and passed back again through the collar, after which the free end is fastened by wrapping with wire. The wrapped end of the sections that address elevator ropes serves as a reminder that different elevator systems required different types of rope:

Chapter 1: Standard Methods and Facilities for Testing Wire Ropes
Chapter 2: Materials Composing Wire Rope and Their Properties
Chapter 3: Standard Types of Wire Rope Construction
Chapter 4: Variety of Uses of Wire Rope
Chapter 5: Mechanical Theory of Wire Rope
Chapter 6: Practical Hints and Suggestions
Chapter 7: Instructions on Ordering Wire Rope
Chapter 8: Typical Applications of Wire Rope in Practice

“When ordering rope for elevators, state whether hoisting, counterweight, or hand or valve or safety rope is wanted, also whether right or left lay is desired. The ropes used for these purposes are different and are not interchangeable.”

The diversity of elevator ropes was reflected in the design of American Steel & Wire’s standard hoisting rope, which was produced in six grades or strengths: Iron, Mild Steel, Crucible Cast Steel, Extra Strong Crucible Cast Steel, Plow Steel and Monitor Plow Steel. The company’s standard iron rope was primarily designed for use on drum machines and was “used for elevator hoisting where the strength is sufficient” (Figure 2). It was also described as “almost universally employed for counterweight ropes, except on traction elevators.” Their Mild Steel Elevator Hoisting Rope was designed “especially for traction elevators in tall buildings where, on account of [the] usual quick starting and stopping, a stronger and lighter rope is required.” Shipper or control ropes (also called tiller or hand ropes) differed from standard ropes in that they were composed of six strands of 42 wires each, which were wrapped around seven hemp cores (Figure 3).

wire rope figure 3 and 4

Figure 5: “Side Plunger Hydraulic Elevator,” American Wire Rope: Catalog & Handbook, American Steel & Wire (1913).

wire rope fig 5
Figure 5

In addition to providing detailed information on a wide variety of wire ropes, the catalog included schematic drawings that illustrated their proper application. These included 17 elevator-related drawings that depicted direct-, side- and horizontal-plunger hydraulic elevators; geared and traction electric elevators; and electric and belt-driven worm-geared elevators. The drawings’ emphasis on the application of wire ropes makes them a unique resource. Two versions of direct-plunger elevators were depicted — one with a shipper rope and one with an in-car controller — and the presence of two elevation drawings for each system permits a thorough understanding of these elevators (Figure 4). The same level of detail was provided for side-plunger hydraulic elevators (manufactured by Otis) and horizontal-plunger hydraulic systems (Figures 5 and 6).

Figure 6: “Horizontal Hydraulic Elevator,” American Wire Rope: Catalog & Handbook, American Steel & Wire (1913)

Figure 5
Figure 6

The electric elevator drawings are of particular interest, because, in 1913, they represented the newest systems on the market. The electric drum machine featured an interesting array of sheaves for the car and counterweight ropes, while the worm-gear machine employed a winding drum located near the midpoint of the shaft (Figures 7 and 8). The traction elevator drawing effectively illustrated its inherent simplicity and the potential of this new design (Figure 9).

The variety of elevator types illustrated in American Steel & Wire’s catalog represented the diversity of elevator systems prevalent in the early 20th century, as well as the importance of wire rope to their operation. Part Two of this article will follow this story through the 1930s, which encompasses the continued development of the traction elevator and the writing of the first elevator safety codes.

Figure 7: “Electric Drum Machine,” American Wire Rope: Catalog & Handbook, American Steel & Wire (1913).

Figure 7

Figure 8: “Worm Gear Electric Elevator,” American Wire Rope: Catalog & Handbook, American Steel & Wire (1913).

figure 8

Figure 9: “Traction Elevator,” American Wire Rope: Catalog & Handbook, American Steel & Wire (1913).

Figure 9

Original article can be found here at Elevator World Inc. 

———————————————————————————————————————————————————

Hercules SLR is part of the Hercules Group of Companies which offers a unique portfolio of businesses nationally with locations from coast to coast. Our companies provide an extensive coverage of products and services that support the success of a wide range of business sectors across Canada including the energy, oil & gas, manufacturing, construction, aerospace, infrastructure, utilities, oil and gas, mining and marine industries.

Hercules Group of Companies is comprised of: Hercules SLRHercules Machining & Millwright ServicesSpartan Industrial MarineStellar Industrial Sales and Wire Rope Atlantic.

 

 

Wire Rope: A Manufacturing & Transportation Pioneer

Wire-Rope-Pioneer
Early Life

Andrew Smith Hallidie was born Andrew Smith, later adopting the name Hallidie in honour of his uncle, Sir Andrew Hallidie. His birthplace is variously quoted as London in the United Kingdom. His father, Andrew Smith (a prolific inventor in his own right, responsible for inventing the first box door spring, a floor cramp and had an early patent for wire rope) had been born in Fleming, Dumfrieshire, Scotland, in 1798, and his mother, Julia Johnstone Smith, was from Lockerbie, Dumfriesshire.

Andrew_Smith_Hallidie
Andrew Smith Hallidie

The younger Smith was initially apprenticed to a machine shop and drawing office. In 1852 he and his father set sail for California, where the senior Mr. Smith had an interest in some gold mines in Mariposa County. The mines proved disappointing, and he returned to England in 1853. Andrew Smith Junior, however, remained in California, and became a gold miner whilst also working as a blacksmith, surveyor and builder of bridges.

Inventions

In 1855, young Hallidie built a wire suspension bridge and aqueduct 220 feet long at Horse Shoe Bar on the Middle Fork of the American River. During 1856, whilst working on the construction of a flume at a mine at American Bar, the now, Andrew Smith Hallidie was consulted over the rapid rate of wear on the ropes used to lower cars of rock from the mine to the mill. These ropes wore out in 75 days—unsatisfied with this, Hallidie manufactured rope for the project consisting of three spliced pieces one-eighth of an inch thick, 1200 feet long. These lasted for two years—a vast improvement from the previous 75 day standard.

Hallide invented the Hallidie Ropeway, a form of aerial tramway used for transporting ore and other material across mountainous districts in the west, which he successfully installed in a number of locations, and later patented. After a few years of drifting from camp to camp working claims, narrowly avoiding disasters both natural and man-made, and briefly running a restaurant at Michigan Bluff in the Mother Lode, he abandoned mining in 1857 and returned to San Francisco. Under the name of A. S. Hallidie & Co., he commenced the manufacture of wire rope in a building at Mason and Chestnut Streets, using the machinery from American Bar.

In addition to aerial tramways, his rope was used to build suspension bridges across creeks and rivers throughout northern California. He was often away from the City on his bridge projects until in 1865 he returned to San Francisco and focused his energies entirely on manufacturing and perfecting wire rope. The discovery of the Comstock Lode silver mines in Nevada increased the demand for wire rope.

The city became a major industrial center for mining operations in the 1860s and Hallidie prospered, becoming a leading entrepreneur, US citizen, husband to Martha Elizabeth Woods, and in 1868 President of the prestigious Mechanic’s Institute.

Hallidie’s ‘Endless Wire Ropeway’—Precursor to Cable Cars

It was about this time that Hallidie began to implement a scheme for urban transportation he had been considered for some time, based upon his use of wire rope for the aerial tramways. He worked on improving the tensile strength and flexibility of his wire to develop an “endless” wire rope that could be would around large pulleys, which could then provide continuous underground propulsion for a car that could be attached or released at will from the cable. Hallide took out a patent Endless Wire Rope Patentfor this “Endless Wire Ropeway” and for years it dominated the construction of tramway at mines throughout the West. However, it was the implementation of his Endless Wire Ropeway for moving streetcars in San Francisco that brought him lasting fame and a place in the history books.

It is here accounts differ as to exactly how involved Hallidie was in the inception of the first cable car at Clay Street Hill Railway. One version, has him taking over the promotion of the line when the original promoter, Benjamin Brooks, failed to raise the necessary capital.

In another version, Hallidie was the instigator, inspired by a desire to reduce the suffering incurred by the horses that hauled streetcars up Jackson Street, from Kearny to Stockton Street.

There is also doubt as to when exactly the first run of the cable car occurred. The franchise required the first run no later than August 1, 1873, however at least one source reports that the run took place a day late, on August 2, but that the city chose not to void the franchise. Some accounts say that the first gripman hired by Hallidie looked down the steep hill from Jones and refused to operate the car, so Hallidie took the grip himself and ran the car down the hill and up again without any problems.

The named engineer of the Clay Street line was William Eppelsheimer. Given Hallidie’s previous experience of cables and cable haulage systems, it seems likely that he contributed to the design of the system.

wire rope cable car

The Clay Street line started regular service on September 1, 1873, and was a financial success. In addition, Hallidie’s patents on the cable car design were stringently enforced on cable car promoters around the world and made him a rich man.

A. S. Hallidie & Co. became the California Wire Works in 1883 with Hallidie as president. In 1895, it was sold to Washburn and Moen Co., the oldest manufacturers of wire in the United States (established in 1831).

Hallidie died on April 24, 1900 at the age of 65 of heart disease at his San Francisco residence, but his name lives on. In San Francisco, Hallidie Plaza (near the Powell and Market Street cable car turntable) and the Hallidie Building (an office building in the city’s Financial District) are named after him.

———————————————————————————————————————————————————

Hercules SLR is part of the Hercules Group of Companies which offers a unique portfolio of businesses nationally with locations from coast to coast. Our companies provide an extensive coverage of products and services that support the success of a wide range of business sectors across Canada including the energy, oil & gas, manufacturing, construction, aerospace, infrastructure, utilities, oil and gas, mining and marine industries.

Hercules Group of Companies is comprised of: Hercules SLRHercules Machining & Millwright ServicesSpartan Industrial MarineStellar Industrial Sales and Wire Rope Atlantic.

 

Hercules’ Tips: Prevent Synthetic Round Sling Damage

roundsling

We’ve discussed what to look for when assessing your synthetic round sling for damage—but how do you prevent damage from happening in the first place?

Read on for essential tips to prolong the life of your synthetic round slings.

Round Sling

First and foremost, you should avoid activities that cause chemical burns, bunching, tears or exposed yarns. To prevent damage to your round sling, refrain from:

  • Dropping or dragging it along the ground or rough surfaces;
  • Pulling slings from under loads when load is resting on the sling—place blocks under load if possible;
  • Shortening or adjusting the sling using unapproved methods;
  • Twisting or knotting the sling;
  • Exposing sling to damaging alkali’s or acids;
  • Exposing sling to sources of heat damage or weld splatter;
  • Using slings or allowing exposure to temperatures above 194° (90°C) or below -40°F (-40°C).
  • “Tip Loading” a sling on a hook rather than centering it in base, or “bowl” of the hook;
  • Using hooks, shackles or other hardware that have edges or other rough surfaces which could damage the sling;
  •  Running/driving over sling with a vehicle or other equipment.

In addition to these factors, exposing synthetic slings to certain chemicals can cause minor or total degradation—time, temperature and concentration factors affect degradation. Consult your sling’s manufacturer for specific applications.

Sharp Edges and your Sling

One of the most crucial aspects of protecting your sling is ensuring it’s kept away from sharp edges. It’s important to note that edges or surfaces in contact with your sling don’t have to be “razor” sharp to cause sling failure. Slings can be damaged, worn down or even torn as tension between your sling, connection points and cargo develops.

Protect damage to your sling from corners, protrusions or contact with any edge that isn’t rounded or smooth. To do so, a qualified person will determine appropriate methods for protecting the sling in relation to the conditions it will be used in. The qualified person may use specially developed protectors like sleeves, wear pads or corner protectors to shield the sling from harsh edges.

Conducting lift tests (in a non-consequence setting) is recommended to test your safe-guarding methods—remember to inspect your sling after each lift test for damage and suitability.

Can my Sling Ever Touch Edges?

Avoid your sling directly contacting edges, unless the edge is:

  • Smooth and well-rounded;
  • The size of the radii is adequately large. Use the table below (Image 1) to determine the minimum edge radii suitable for contact with synthetic slings.
Image 1

Prevent further damage to your sling by storing it in a clean, dry and dark place. Use mild soap and water to wash your sling, and never place it in the washing machine. Avoid storing somewhere your sling may be exposed to acids or other harmful chemicals or splatters.

Overall, even when following every safeguard described above things may go wrong. Be sure to asses your load properly, never place any part of your body between yourself and the sling, and always ensure all personnel are clear from lifted or suspended loads.

Original Article here: https://riggingcanada.ca/articles/safe-usage-guides/round-sling-safety-bulletin/round-sling-safety-bulletin.pdf

———————————————————————————————————————————————————

Hercules SLR is part of the Hercules Group of Companies which offers a unique portfolio of businesses nationally with locations from coast to coast. Our companies provide an extensive coverage of products and services that support the success of a wide range of business sectors across Canada including the energy, oil & gas, manufacturing, construction, aerospace, infrastructure, utilities, oil and gas, mining and marine industries.

Hercules Group of Companies is comprised of: Hercules SLRHercules Machining & Millwright ServicesSpartan Industrial MarineStellar Industrial Sales and Wire Rope Atlantic.

 

Hercules Training Academy: Securing, Lifting & Rigging

training-academy-group-shot

Hercules Training Academy: First Course Complete

The Hercules Training Academy is open for training—last week Hercules was thrilled to have eight employees hailing from across Canada participate in our first ever training program. Employees from CSR, sales and management gathered at Hercules’ new, purpose-built specialized Training Academy in Dartmouth, NS to learn the ins and outs (quite literally)—of securing, lifting and rigging in our first specialized training course.

Training Academy Facilities

What makes Hercules’ Training Academy ‘specialized’? Our equipment, for one. Our new custom crane is built into the warehouse floor and can lift up to 10 tonnes—pieces of concrete were actually torn up in order to fix the crane to the floor. This gives our employees experience working with larger, more realistic loads that one may commonly see on a job site.

hercules-training-academy-classroom--sling-chain

In addition to the large crane, we have two smaller, portable cranes—these can be used for activities outdoors or on the warehouse floor, and allow trainee’s to practice securing, lifting and rigging in various settings.

In addition to the rigging equipment available at the Training Academy, there are two new classroom spaces. Trainees spend a time in the classroom learning various details, features and differences between equipment like hoists, buckles and slings. Then, they take their knowledge to a practical setting.

This combination of practical and classroom experience is invaluable for our clients and customers.

“I’ve learned so much on the course that will help my understand my customers’ needs much better. I know what’s a workable solution, and how to interpret the needs of the clients’ project,” says Keyne, a CSR from Hamilton, Ontario.

One activity included Hercules’ employees hoisting and lifting objects up and through holes outdoors, which mimicked the challenges of rigging objects into the top of a larger structure, like a boat. Another required employees to secure, lift and rig irregular shaped objects into a shipping container. This showed our employees some of the challenges workers face onsite—things like balancing a large objects’ centre of gravity, evenly distributing a heavy load and properly securing misshapen objects.

Dwayne Fader, Business Development Manager (and former rigging technician!) at Hercules explained some of the common misconceptions and complications workers face with rigging a heavy load. “There is so much more math involved than you think—I’ve never used it more than when I worked in rigging. You have to make sure things are even, balanced and fit correctly—all more challenging than it seems.”

Commitment to Learning

Hercules truly believes that experience is the best teacher, which is why we developed the Training Academy. When we teach our employees how to work with the products we sell, and get a ‘taste’ of what the job is actually like, they gain a whole new insight towards issues our customers and clients face daily—and are able to offer practical solutions and advice. Simply put—our employees don’t just ‘talk the talk’, but can ‘walk the walk’, too.

TJ, a Sales Manager from  Langley, BC says “The Training Academy session was fantastic. I’ve learned more useful skills than I expected, and it’s been fun! The hands-on activities really helped me understand what I was learning. It made me realize what’s great in theory, and then what you actually need to do to make that theory workable.”

Hercules’ employees gained a lot from their time at the Training Academy, and many are excited to do again.

“If there’s a Rigging 2—I want to be on it! I learned stuff I never knew I needed to know, and it’s been FUN.”  says Quincy, an Inspector from Hamilton, Ontario. “Who ever thought I’d use ‘work’ and ‘fun’ in the same sentence? But I have—and it was!”

Hercules offers practical, hands-on learning programs designed to exceed minimum safety requirements. These courses can be customized to fit the specific needs of your workplace, and can be provide training on-site or at a Hercules facility.

We’ve always been committed to providing specialized training—see the table below to discover our available training courses. 

Current Courses Offered:
Power Operated Work PlatformsChain Saw Safety

Confined Space Entrant & Attendant (CSEA)

Fall Protection

Fundamentals of Rigging with Practical

Forklift Safety (Narrow Aisle or Counterbalance)

Lock Out Tag Out

Red Cross Emergency First AidRed Cross Standard First Aid

Fall Rescue Systems

WHMIS 2015 with GHS

Fundamentals of Overhead Cranes

Fundamentals of Rigging

Offshore Rigger Banksman

Overhead Crane Operator

There really is no substitute for experience. All in all, Hercules’ employees had a similar takeaway. Marc, a Manager from Quebec, explains “This week has been amazing. I learned so much about the industry, and now I can understand the jobs as our clients do. I’ve actually already taken some material home for Rigging 2, and I’ve completed the math exercise! It’s great.”

More questions about training at Hercules? E-mail us at training@herculesslr.com.

———————————————————————————————————————————————————

Hercules SLR is part of the Hercules Group of Companies which offers a unique portfolio of businesses nationally with locations from coast to coast. Our companies provide an extensive coverage of products and services that support the success of a wide range of business sectors across Canada including the energy, oil & gas, manufacturing, construction, aerospace, infrastructure, utilities, oil and gas, mining and marine industries.

Hercules Group of Companies is comprised of: Hercules SLRHercules Machining & Millwright ServicesSpartan Industrial MarineStellar Industrial Sales and Wire Rope Atlantic.

 

Synthetic Roundslings – Free Inspection Download Guide

roundsling

Synthetic roundslings are an integral part of heavy-lifting and rigging. Similarly, proper sling inspection is integral to ensure the job is done safely and properly.

Read on to find out how to inspect your roundslings for use.

Look and Feel for Damage

Most damage to a roundsling can be found simply by looking. However, internal damage can be present as well. Inspect for internal damage by feeling along the slings’ entire length.

Minor Damage Causes Major Incidents  

Damage to a roundsling may seem minor or small, yet this can drastically reduce its ability to lift or hold heavy loads.  This increases its risk of breaking during use−which can result in large costs, damaged material and most importantly, injured people.

In reality, no damage to a roundsling is minor−if damage is present, it should not be used.

What Should Operators Look and Feel for?

–        Missing Identification tag;

–        Holes, cuts, tears, snags that expose core yarn, excessive abrasive wear;

–        Broken or damaged yarn core;

–        One or more knots are tied to roundsling;

–        Acid or caustic burns of roundsling;

–        Melting, charring or weld spatter of any part of roundsling;

–        Distortion, excessive pitting, corrosion or other damages to fitting(s);

–        Broken or worn stitching in the cover which exposes the core yarn;

–        Any conditions that cause you to doubt the roundslings’ strength.

Inspection-of-Synthetic-Slings
Click on the above image to download our Synthetic Sling Inspection Guide
I’ve Found Damage−Now What?

If any damage is found, pictured above or otherwise, the sling must be removed from service. When removed, the sling must be completely destroyed, and must be made unusable for future use. If it’s repairable, it must be proof-tested by the roundsling’s manufacturer or another qualified tester.

 

Frayed Sling

 

Sling damage should never be temporarily repaired.

Synthetic roundslings are an integral part of heavy-lifting and rigging−however, proper inspection is also necessary to ensure the job is done safely, and properly. Keep reading to find out how often to assess your roundslings before use.

Inspections—how often should I do this?

Roundsling inspection should use the following 3-step procedure, which ensures slings are inspected frequently enough. The stages are:

Initial Inspection

When your sling is received, a designated employee will ensure the correct sling has been received, is undamaged and that it meets requirements for use.

Frequent Inspection

The roundsling should be inspected before each shift, each day in normal service. When using for severe service application, the roundsling should be checked before each individual use.

Periodic Inspection

Every sling should be periodically inspected by a designated person. However, this inspection should be performed by someone who does not regularly inspect the sling. This provides an opportunity to find issues that previous inspections may have missed or overlooked.

Period inspections are based on how frequently used slings are, or how frequently you anticipate you will use them for. Other factors include the severity of conditions and what type of work the sling is used for. Inspections may also be based on slings used in the past under similar circumstances.

Generally, inspections should be done as follows:

  • Normal Service—yearly
  • Severe Service—monthly to quarterly
  • Special Service—as recommended by a qualified person

Intervals between inspection should never exceed one year. Written records are not required for frequent inspections, however written records should be kept. The WSTDA, RS-1 and ASME B30.9 require written record of the latest inspection.

Original Article here: https://riggingcanada.ca/articles/safe-usage-guides/round-sling-safety-bulletin/round-sling-safety-bulletin.pdf

————————————————————————————————————————————————————

Hercules SLR is part of the Hercules Group of Companies which offers a unique portfolio of businesses nationally with locations from coast to coast. Our companies provide an extensive coverage of products and services that support the success of a wide range of business sectors across Canada including the energy, oil & gas, manufacturing, construction, aerospace, infrastructure, utilities, oil and gas, mining and marine industries.

Hercules Group of Companies is comprised of: Hercules SLRHercules Machining & Millwright ServicesSpartan Industrial MarineStellar Industrial Sales and Wire Rope Atlantic.

We have the ability to provide any solution your business or project will need. Call us today for more information. 1-877-461-4876. Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook for more news and upcoming events.

 

Lights, Camera Action: Kito TNER Theater Hoist

Kito-theatre-hoist

Timely maintenance and repair work on stage equipment at major entertainment events is now a thing of the past. The Harrington TNER by Kito was designed to specifically address some of the major maintenance items that were previously problematic in the entertainment industry.

Traditional entertainment hoist brake systems are always a major maintenance item. This is why the TNER was developed with a revolutionary pull rotor brake that comes with an incredible 5 year warranty- regardless of wear. The pull rotor brake is simple and proven which is why it’s the world’s most reliable theatrical hoist brake. With no brake coil to fail and no wire leads, it’s as simple as ‘power on, brake off’.

TNER news image

Another common problem that the TNER avoids is chain piling which can cause jamming.  Traditional hoist motors are designed with stamped steel chain guides that are prone to wear and frequent maintenance.  The TNER however features a cast iron chain guide located on the bottom of the hoist that is resistant to wear and jamming and can easily be replaced without disassembling the hoist.

The TNER theatrical hoist was developed with a sleek rounded body and ergonomic fold away handles designed to fit traditional road cases. The TNER comes with a unique plug and play quick voltage changer that allows the user to quickly switch from 220V to 440V and the ½ and 1 tonne models travel at 16 feet per minute, while the 2 tonne unit travels at 8 feet per minute.

———————————————————————————————————————————————————

Hercules SLR is part of the Hercules Group of Companies which offers a unique portfolio of businesses nationally with locations from coast to coast. Our companies provide an extensive coverage of products and services that support the success of a wide range of business sectors across Canada including the energy, oil & gas, manufacturing, construction, aerospace, infrastructure, utilities, oil and gas, mining and marine industries.

Hercules Group of Companies is comprised of: Hercules SLRHercules Machining & Millwright ServicesSpartan Industrial MarineStellar Industrial Sales and Wire Rope Atlantic.

We have the ability to provide any solution your business or project will need. Call us today for more information. 1-877-461-4876. Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook for more news and upcoming events.

 

 

 

Hercules Training Academy: Employees Learn the Industry

hercules-training-academy-rigging-securing-lifting

Hercules Training Academy was thrilled to host our employees from across Canada at the new Hercules’ Training Academy at Wire Rope Industries (Atlantic) in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia to participate in the first specialized training course for securing, lifting and rigging.

Eight employees from the Hercules’ company ranging from our customer service team to our sales team strapped on their steel-toe boots and safety glasses for one week, to gain first-hand securing, lifting and rigging experience. This aims to provide Hercules’ employees with a better understanding of the complications involving securing, lifting and rigging and first-hand experience with the products we sell, talk and write about everyday.

How did they practice securing, lifting and rigging in a smaller space? The Hercules Training Academy has two new classroom spaces, outdoor space and a warehouse complete with two cranes—one smaller crane, and a larger custom crane built into the floor, capable of lifting nearly 10-tonnes. This combination of classroom and practical experience gives Hercules’ employees a thorough awareness of the realities of securing, lifting and rigging.

hercules-training-academy-securing-lifting-rigging

Practical training included an outdoor setup which mimicked the challenges of lifting and securing on top of a larger structure—like a boat, for example. The metal frame held large tarps with various shaped cut-outs, where the trainees were tasked with fitting objects up and through the openings. This helps the trainees understand the difficulties workers’ faces when trying to lift and hoist objects through tight or irregular-shaped openings.

Indoors at Hercules’ Training Academy, practical training included a securing and lifting activity which required Hercules’ employees to secure, lift and hoist irregular-shaped objects into a mock shipping container. This shows employees the complexities of arranging these large and heavy objects, the issues workers face on job sites and how the products and services Hercules’ SLR provides contribute to the entire securing, lifting and rigging process.

Interested in training from Hercules? Head to our Safety and Training page to discover our offerings.

———————————————————————————————————————————————————

Hercules SLR is part of the Hercules Group of Companies which offers a unique portfolio of businesses nationally with locations from coast to coast. Our companies provide an extensive coverage of products and services that support the success of a wide range of business sectors across Canada including the energy, oil & gas, manufacturing, construction, aerospace, infrastructure, utilities, oil and gas, mining and marine industries.

Hercules Group of Companies is comprised of: Hercules SLRHercules Machining & Millwright ServicesSpartan Industrial MarineStellar Industrial Sales and Wire Rope Atlantic.

 

Rigging Talk – A Guide to Synthetic Slings

Synthetic-Sling-Header

A Guide to Synthetic Slings

Synthetic slings are made from soft materials, but are strong enough to lift heavy loads and protect expensive and sensitive loads from scratches and crushing.

Synthetic slings may well be the answer if you are looking for a less cumbersome lifting sling, which is lighter and easier for your employees to maneuver when rigging a lot? With Synthetic slings there is less chance of marring, scratching, or crushing delicate loads.

A synthetic sling may be the best choice for your overhead lift and can provide the flexibility, strength, and support you need when moving material through your facility or across your job site. However, you’ll have to give special considerations to the operating environment, stretch under load, and the possibility of the load causing cuts or abrasion to the sling.

At Hercules, we custom make and distribute all types of lifting slings, as well as rigging hardware, below-the-hook devices, and other lifting products.

What is a Synthetic Lifting Sling?

If you’re lifting highly easily damaged or delicate materials, then a synthetic lifting sling can provide the flexibility, strength, and support you need to support such a specialized load. Synthetic slings can be made from polyester, nylon, or high-performance materials and are lightweight, easy to rig, and extremely flexible.

Synthetic slings are popular in construction and other general industries because they’re fairly inexpensive, come in a variety of standard sizes, and can be replaced easily.

Yellow nylon soft lifting sling

So what are the advantages of using Synthetic Slings?

Popular in a variety of industries and lifting applications, they are inexpensive, lightweight and extremely flexible. They are able to mold to the shape of delicate and irregularly-shaped loads, or be used in a choker hitch to securely grip loads of round bar stock or tubes.

Synthetic slings are extremely versatile, can be used in vertical, choker, and basket hitches and have a Design Factor of 5:1, meaning the breaking strength of the sling is five times higher than the rated Working Load Limit. Never exceed the rated Working Load Limit.

Made of non-sparking and non-conductive fibers, synthetic slings can be used in even the most unforgiving of atmospheres.

For every positive there is a negative. What are the disadvantages of using Synthetic Slings?

Careful consideration should always be given to the application when determining whether or not to use a synthetic lifting sling. They are more prone to damage from environmental factors like extreme temperatures, prolonged UV exposure, and chemically active environments. They’re also not as durable as steel wire rope slings or alloy chain slings when it comes to abrasion and tears.

Synthetic slings have a relatively low heat-resistance and are not recommended for use in high-heat applications. However, special high-heat resistant slings are available from certain manufacturers.

Nylon and polyester slings have different resistance characteristics to acidic and alkaline environments so special consideration must be made when selecting a synthetic sling to be used in chemical applications. Corner protectors or edge guards should be used to protect against cuts and tears.

If there’s any evidence of heat damage, UV damage, rips, tears, punctures, abrasion, or worn or broken stitching, the sling should be removed from service and properly disposed of to discourage further use.

Polyester vs. Nylon Lifting Slings

When choosing a material for synthetic sling use, we recommend considering a material’s resistance to specific chemicals, temperature resistance, and stretch. Below we’ll provide some of the considerations and characteristics of a polyester slings vs. a nylon sling to help you make more of an informed decision.

Poly sling

Synthetic Polyester Slings

  • Approximately 3% stretch at rated capacity – less bounce allows for more load control during a lift
  • Polyester is a softer material and less abrasive to sensitive or delicate finishes on loads
  • Lower liquid absorption compared to nylon and is non-conductive
  • Resistant to acidic environments and interactions with bleaching agents
  • Great for low headroom elevates
  • More popular in European countries but becoming more popular in the U. T. as the expense of nylon materials continues to rise
  • Not advised for alkaline environments including aldehydes, ethers, and strong alkalis
  • Can’t be used in environments in extra of 194°F or below -40°F

Synthetic Nylon Slings

  • 8-10% stretch at graded capacity – can help reduce shock loading but must be accounted for in low headroom elevates
  • Unaffected by grease and essential oil
  • More popular in the United States and most popular material for general purpose synthetic web slings
  • Resistant to aldehydes, ethers, and strong alkalis
  • Not recommended for acidic environments or for use with bleaching providers
  • Keeps moisture which can also add to or cause stretch under load—however moisture will not influence capacity

Will conduct electricity because they can soak up moisture/water—NEVER gamble your life on this! Can’t be used in environments in extra of 194°F or below -40°F

Synthetic Web Slings

Web slings are toned belt straps made from component material and most commonly feature fittings, or toned or twisted eyes, on each end. Web slings are the most flexible and widely-used multi-purpose sling. They’re strong, easy to rig, and inexpensive. In comparison to chain, they’re more flexible and lighter and can be used to lessen scratching and dents to loads. They can be fabricated with wide load-bearing surfaces up to 48” to provide considerable surface contact for heavy and large loads.

Nylon web sling performance isn’t influenced by oil and oil, and they’re resistant to alkaline-based chemicals. However, they should never be taken in acidic atmospheres or close to chemicals used as whitening agents. Polyester web slings can be used in acidic environments or close to chemicals used as whitening agents, but should never be taken in alkaline conditions.

They likewise have a relatively low heat-resistance and are not to be used in environments that exceed 194°F, or environments where temperature ranges are below -40°F. Regarding loads with sharp sides, corner protectors or advantage guards should be used to protect the sling from cuts and holes. Because there is a difference between abrasion proof protection and cut proof protection, make certain to identify the sort of resistance necessary for your application.

If used outside, they should be stored away in a cool, dark, and dry atmosphere to avoid prolonged direct exposure to sunlight and Ultra violet rays, which can damage and weaken the strength of the sling. Every time a raise is made at the W. L. L., the consumer can expect approximately 8-10% stretch when by using a nylon web sling and 3% stretch when by using a polyester web sling at graded capacity.

Polyester Round Slings

Round Sling

Artificial round slings can include both a single path and multi-path design. The multi-path design can contain top of the line fibers which leads to a lighter, more ergonomic, and tougher sling.

Endless round slings have load-bearing fiber or core yarns that are protected by a individual or double woven external jacket. They are strong, soft and flexible, and protect smooth or refined surfaces from scratches, dings, and crushing.

Round slings can be taken in vertical, container, or choker hitches—which are especially helpful for lifting pipes and pipes. When used in a choker problem, round slings release the choke much easier than a web sling would.

Whilst the woven outer coat has no load-bearing capacity, it is designed to protect the internal load-bearing fibers and core yarns against abrasion, dirt and grease, and UV wreckage. Polyester round slings are well suited for acidic environments, or close to chemicals used as whitening agents, but should not be used in alkaline environments.

Like web slings, round slings are more prone to heat damage and should not be used in environments that exceed 194°F or below -40°F. For loads with sharp edges, corner protectors or edge guards should be used to protect the sling from cuts and tears.

If used outdoors, they should be stored in a cool, dark, and dry environment to avoid prolonged exposure to sunlight and UV rays, which can damage and weaken the strength of the sling. When a lift is made at the W. L. L., the user can expect approximately 3-5% stretch when using a round sling.

Hercules SLR has slings to suit every job. Slingmaster is Hercules SLR’s own brand of sling. Just click here to explore our sling section on our website.

SlingMaster

———————————————————————————————————————————————————

Hercules SLR is part of the Hercules Group of Companies which offers a unique portfolio of businesses nationally with locations from coast to coast. Our companies provide an extensive coverage of products and services that support the success of a wide range of business sectors across Canada including the energy, oil & gas, manufacturing, construction, aerospace, infrastructure, utilities, oil and gas, mining and marine industries.

Hercules Group of Companies is comprised of: Hercules SLRHercules Machining & Millwright ServicesSpartan Industrial MarineStellar Industrial Sales and Wire Rope Atlantic.

We have the ability to provide any solution your business or project will need. Call us today for more information. 1-877-461-4876. Don’t forget to follow us onTwitter, LinkedIn and Facebook for more news and upcoming events.