Powering up for work place safety

Falsework Power Tool

Powering up
for work place safety

To avoid the dangerous and noisy practice of ‘Striking’ to disassemble falsework, IDC developed a power tool to release the Titan jacks which frequently become jammed up.

Working for leading concrete construction contractor, Byrne Bros, IDC was commissioned to develop a tool that would dismantle falsework (temporary framework posts) with dramatically improved safety, minimal noise and post damage while also bringing financial benefits.

Modern buildings are often constructed from concrete by using a process called shuttering where falsework posts are positioned to hold liquid concrete in place until it sets. Once the concrete structure has hardened, the falsework posts are removed to allow the building to stand alone.

Unfortunately, the process of dismantling the screw nut-based falsework posts can be hazardous and damaging as the metal nuts which hold the falsework together are literally struck with hammers at great impact until they are loosened; often breaking them in the process.

The noise this creates is also a problem as in many cities there are restrictions on noise levels during certain hours; forcing delays as workers have to remove the falsework at inconvenient times.

IDC’s challenge was to design a device that would be light enough to be lifted into place manually by construction workers, whilst being powerful enough to release the nuts.

IDC formulated a ‘Locate, Position and Lock’ solution. This works by attaching a rotating mechanism to the falsework which forces the nut to release.

The device uses a hydraulic motor which pumps oil at high pressure to initiate the rotation.

A gear attaches to the collar adaptor which then engages with the nut once the rotation has been put into effect, which dismantles the falsework.

IDC handled all design stages from; concept, mechanism, product and electronic design, right through to power and stress analysis, materials and systems research, and finally prototype manufacture and field trials.

The resulting product was so successful that it was awarded the Product Design Innovation Award at the British Construction Industry Awards.