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Braked pulley for oleo drop roller


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Hi. Wonder if anyone has advice from successful implementation please...

In over 40 years we've never had an incident with ours as-is. Unfortunately we had two rollers in use with cloths on this season where one cloth comes in and then the other out in quick succession. The crew member was flustered for a moment and let go of the wrong rope before he'd tied it off. It fell and struck him on the head from 24 feet up. He needed stitches but we're very aware it could have been much worse. 

We've no fly tower so that's not an option, nor masses of wing space so our fanciful ideas of counterweighting aren't really practical. 

Aside from some immediate protection actions such as colour coded tapes, cross hatching on the deck as to not stand directly underneath the roller, and a second crew person as a backup, I had the idea of investigating a braked pulley or gin wheel to arrest the fall of the roller. Several technicians have slightly different ideas about where to mount them to make them relatively easily resettable - in the grid, at the cleat at stage level, etc. Whether we only need one for both rope tails or one either side in the grid...

Other than theory, has anyone done this with their oleo roller successfully and practically? As I say, we'd not had an incident using this method in well over 40 years, but we want to prevent a repeat. 

Any ideas or links to specific braked pulleys or gin wheels welcomed. We have looked at a few which seem to be suited more to the building industry and many of them don't use a complete inertia stop but rather just a controlled descent to the ground. While this would give more time to get out of the way or realise your mistake, it's not really the resettable stop that we want to have. 

Many thanks.


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Sounds like you're looking for the ISC R-ALF auto locking pulley:


They also do a single direction locking one, which could also work for you if you want to be able to haul it out at full speed without engaging the brake:


Edited by dje
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