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In your experience, which 1-Ton Motorhoist Brand is better overall?


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Hi,

 

Greetings to this wonderfull forum for sound, light, video & rigging professionals!

 

After some google research, here is what I had found http://www.prolyte.nl/technet/technicaltopics/topic_07.htm:

 

Three major brands of hoist used at the moment in the entertainment industry are:

• Lodestar manufactured by CM (USA)

• Stagemaker manufactured by Verlinde (France)

• Chainmaster manufactured by Liftket (Germany)

 

The link above provided some good information in classifying each major product specifications and details, however the reason why I am writing in the forum is I was hoping to get to know, talk or chat with industry professionals from this forum about their personal preference based with actual use or experience in maintanance, ease of operation, durability and just their thought in which brand would they advice someone (for event rental use).

 

I hope to recieve any help from this forum. Thank you for reading this topic and Have a nice day!

 

Regards,

 

Edgard Anthony

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I have hired Lodestars quite a bit and own 6 Liftket motors. For ease of use I prefer the Liftkets as they are quieter in operation and a bit easier to adjust the limit switches but apart from that there's not a great deal of difference between them. Never had any major problems with the Liftkets.

 

Sam

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If you were looking to buy. I would suggest the 1t Lodestars. Simply because there are hundreds of them around, any local hire company is bound to have some. which means you can hire them out to local hire companies who need a couple extra, or you can hire some in if you need any.

 

Having said that, Personally I prefer the Liftket motors. They are quiet and alot lighter than the Lodestars.

 

HTH

 

AndyJones

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Andy hit the nail on the head there really. Regardless of what is the better product, Lodestars are the industry standard (in the UK at least) so as a hire business I would be vary wary of going for another brand given the advantages that Andy stated above.
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A quick look at the OP name and profile suggest that he probably hails from Hong Kong.....

 

Edgard,

Are you interested in just general comments on the differents brands for a study or are you looking to buy some?

 

If you are looking at buying, I would strongly suggest you look at what is available locally. Buying motors is one thing but maintaining them and regular certification will be an ongoing concern. Not much point to buy wizz-bang motors if you have to send them back to Europe for maintenance.....

 

HTH

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Hi Roderick/HTH,

 

Thanks for your advice, Yes I understand that it would not be good if I were to send back the motors overseas for repairs all the time.. I see now that in the UK, CM Lodestars are the industry standard...

 

Is it true that the lifetime warranty for the motor hoists are real? If so, does anyone in the forum know how the repair process works based on their experience in dealing with a damaged motor hoist?

 

Or do motor hoists become damaged for event use or it would really be a very slim chance for a motor hoist to malfunction throught the years in continuous rental use?

 

Thank you John, Sam and Andy for your comments as well!

 

Regards,

 

Edgard

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Is it true that the lifetime warranty for the motor hoists are real? If so, does anyone in the forum know how the repair process works based on their experience in dealing with a damaged motor hoist?

 

Or do motor hoists become damaged for event use or it would really be a very slim chance for a motor hoist to malfunction throught the years in continuous rental use?

 

Not had any experience about the lifetime warranty, I guess it depends who you buy them from and what terms they offer.

 

With regards to damaging hoists in rental use, it depends who you is using them! If it's going to be your own well trained crew then you're not going to have many problems. If they are going out on "dry hire" (hiring your kit without your crew) then anything could happen and you would need a good system of immediately testing the motors when they come off hire so that you can check for faults and bill the hirer for any damage.

 

Sam

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Rental Damage.

 

The motors wear out, and need bits replacing, the chains wear and stretch over time, needing replacing when passed a certain limit, cables chaff, motors/chains need lubricating, and adjusting, as well as, in uk at least, testing and certifing as regularily as neccesary, per year, per job.

 

Also you will have one thrown off the front of the stage by somone at somepoint, maybe you can charge that back, maybe not, but it will still need to be checked over/fixed by a proper service company, so as others have said, local service, supply, is far more important than what we in the uk like and use.

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Hi Edgard,

 

OT, but so you know: 'HTH' at the end of a post is an acronym for "Hope this helps". Its a newsgroup thing that's carried over into web based forums.

 

Regardless of what is the better product, Lodestars are the industry standard (in the UK at least)

 

CM became the industry standard at a time when the choice was very limited. Basically you could have a 1t Lodestar or the old Verlinde 104. There are more motors on the market now, and while the Lodestar is undeniably still the 'industry standard' in the UK it is starting to look a lot less unassailable as market leader than it did a few years ago.

 

Another thing to think about. Do you want a motor with a 'brain' or not?

 

Some motors (eg: Lodestars and Liftkets) have electrical gear in the case.

Pros: They have easily adjusted electrical limit switches. An individual motor can be given power and controlled with a small hand-held controlled (aka a 'pickle') - this is very convenient when rigging/derigging. They're available with 'smart phasing' devices these days - regardless of whether their 3 phase supply is correctly rotated up is still up and down is still down.

Cons: There's more in the case to go wrong. More cables to run (each motor needs a power line and a separate control line).

 

Others (eg: Chainmaster and most Verlindes) dont.

Pros: They're smaller, lighter and simpler. Each motor only needs one cable.

Cons: You can't use a pickle - in most cases running motors in/out of the box requires 2 people, one to look after the motor and another to operate the controller. Mechanical limits. 'Smart phasing' devices not available - an incorrectly wired cable means the motor will travel the wrong way.

 

Is it true that the lifetime warranty for the motor hoists are real?

 

The warranty (lifetime or otherwise) just covers you for defects in manufacturing. Accidental damage and normal wear are never covered, so the warranty is pretty academic from this point of view.

 

The most common form of accidental damage is to motor cables, especially where they emerge from the casing - people often tug on the cables accidentally or deliberately, while handling the motor. (Speaking of which, with many motors handles on the casing are an optional extra. Unless you're buying motors to be permanently installed, not paying a bit extra for handles is a serious false economy. They can be awkward to handle without, their much more likely to be dropped and the cables are more likely to be pulled about.)

 

And yes, they do wear out. Chains and chainguides particularly wear over time (especially if they're not kept well lubricated).

 

If so, does anyone in the forum know how the repair process works based on their experience in dealing with a damaged motor hoist?

 

Not me I'm afraid. Apart from the very limited faults that are easily fixed on site, my experience of this is limited to putting it back in the box and getting it back to the hire company. :o

 

would really be a very slim chance for a motor hoist to malfunction throught the years in continuous rental use?

 

It depends on the servicing. Any modern motor, well looked after, will give many years of reliable service. There are a surprising number of old Verlinde 104's out there, pushing 20 years old and still working every day.

Conversely, any motor used regularly and not serviced, sooner or later will fail - perhaps disasterously.

 

Sean

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Hi!

 

If you are a starting company, and there are alot of motor hoist brands now that are available,

which 1 Ton Basic Motorhoist would you invest in?

 

Stagemaker SM10 1Ton (current model)

or

CM Lodestar 1Ton? (current model)

 

I guess having a motor hoist without the "brain" would cost better? =)

 

Also By the way, just wanted to know an opinion, this is not a real project, just wanted to know your personal view:

for 400x400mm BOLT model square truss with 10feet span each,

up to how long (how many 10ft pieces) can you rig in a one long span configuration

with only 2motors, one 1Ton motor on each end.

and (12)Par64's and (2)Moving Heads per 10ft piece are loaded,

No spansets in between.

 

would it still be ok for 50FT? Or 30FT would be the maximum?

 

Thank you all for your time, it is nice and really very helpfull in hearing your personal view in motor hoists!

Thank you Rusty and Sean for your comments!

 

Regards,

 

Edgard

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