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Distributed (installed) chain motor control


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Firstly - In Australia, so please keep that in mind.


I am looking to spec an installed motor control system in one of my venues (Hotel, 6*, Ballroom); looking at between 32 and 48ch of control (4 x 8 way cabinets or 4 x 12 way cabinets essentially).


What I have is a room that splits into 3 and has a pros arch with a permanent stage, so 1 cabinet will be located in each roof section and 1 on the stage - we always install motors inverted in this venue so that everything looks nice and clean. Traditionally, that means that the rigger installs the motors whilst a guy in the roof runs around, cables it up, then drops the looms in to a motor controller on the floor. When everything is in place, looms are pulled up or disconnected because we ran out of cable and reused elsewhere. Basically the aim will be to have 8-12 channels in each roof, so that looms no longer need to get dropped and pulled up. We will then have a "pickle" of some description which can plug into one of 4 locations around the room.


I've had this project quoted by a few people, and their first instinct is to go "PLC, touch screen HMI, custom programming". This results in a price tag that is rather bad for the blood pressure - and they don't tick all the boxes. They tend to look at the space and suggest wall sensors to detect if operable walls are in, quite a few suggest positioning (hoists are installed in locations as required so would need re-zeroing every time) and all that sort of guff. So lots of functionality we don't need, and not always the functionality we do. Operation is always by a trained and licensed rigger.


I currently have quotes from HME, Jands VE, DQ using Prolyft & Picolo (the most expensive of the lot so far) - all of these are basically a motor controller with a PLC and HMI wrapped around it.


I have contacted the local kinesys rep and asked him to quote on DigiHoist which I believe will tick all my boxes using the DigiLink to split my control inputs around the room and DigiHandsets for control. Wondering if there are any other product offerings people know of or could suggest that are either 'self programmed' or so basic as to not require programming that would suit my needs? The venue is starting to talk about random "load cell audits" so if it can integrate with load cells, awesome... if not, pft, does not matter.


For those that may have international options - we are using standard CM lodestars and prostars with 6 pin Welland connectors with low voltage control.

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