Scaffolding: a backbone of Construction

Scaffolding Stevenage

Scaffolding or staging is a temporary structure used by construction workers to support crewmembers and materials to repair, construct, and maintaining (plastering and painting) the building, bridges, or any manmade buildings. It is built around the periphery of the multistoried buildings. They are mainly used in sites where the height is unreachable to the construction workers. Scaffolding is also used in its adaptive form in the works like concert stages, viewing and accessing towers, ski ramps, exhibition stands, art projects, and grandstand seating.

Scaffolding Stevenage is sometimes dangerous to the workers if not properly joined. As most of the accidents in construction sites are due to the fault in scaffolding which results in the fall of the person from the height. Therefore, strict supervision and regulations have to follow for preventing such mishaps. Therefore, there are certain prescribed standards, which are duly obeyed in construction sites for the safety of the workers. For example, by providing a guardrail to a height of 1m and a toe board at least 200mm above the platform for the safety of workers.

Scaffolding Stevenage

Ancient Scaffolding System

Scaffolding is not at all a gift of modern technology. It was discovered by the archaeologist that scaffolding is not a new thing. It was used back to 17000 years ago. Palaeolithic cave painting at Lascaux in the Dordogne region of France has sockets in the walls; suggest that scaffolds were used for painting the ceiling. In ancient Greece, the Berlin Foundry Cup depicts the use of scaffolding. There are also evidences that Egyptians also used scaffolding made of wood to construct a building like pyramids. However, they use mainly wood pipes and secure them with ropes.

Evolution of Scaffold in the modern era. 

Before metal pipes, bamboos were mainly used as scaffolding. Lengths of bamboos were put together with hemp rope were used for erecting and creating a scaffold. They were lightweight, durable, and easily available. They are very sturdy to support the weight of the workers and equipment. Bamboo scaffold does not need machinery for assembling and put it in place. Still today in Eastern countries, like in India, Spain the practice of tieing bamboo with rope for creating scaffold is popular.

In 1900, Daniel Palmer-Jones (known as the Grandfather of Scaffolding) and his brother David Henry Jones revolutionized the scaffold. They realized that metal poles might slip when tied with ropes, which is very dangerous. They introduce a set of standard fixing which would secure both wooden and metal poles alike. It was later known as “Rapid Scaffixers”. Scaffixers are the coupling device that is far sturdier than ropes. In 1913, they were award as a contractor for remodelling Buckingham palace using their new scaffolding system.

The design of Palmer-Jones was further revolutionized after six years. He invented the “Improved Universal coupler” which soon becomes standard pattern until the present day. With the advancement of metallurgy, we saw the introduction of scaffolding to use two-inch water steel pipes as it standardizes the dimension and provides more stability to the scaffold. Along with these, a new technique of diagonal bracing was also used especially for tall buildings.

This evolution of scaffolding helps our construction skylines easier.