Ask the Experts
Q&A with scaffolding industry experts
Masonry magazine asked two industry experts, Barney Hanna, development manager for America — AS Mast Climbers, a division of American Platform & Scaffolding in Baltimore, and Clint Bridges, VP of EZ Scaffold in Columbia, Tenn., a few basic questions about the scaffolding industry and its future. Following is what they had to say:
Masonry: When are mast climbers the best scaffolding for masonry jobsites?
Clint Bridges: They're the best choice for any job over 12 feet high. I have had contractors set up the platforms on walls that didn't require them to go up or down — short walls, 10 feet and less — because the mast climbers are easy and fast to set up.
Barney Hanna: They're always the best. We're seeing them more and more in new construction where the masons are frequently loading up materials. The buildings don't have to be tall. If a wall is 40 feet long, masons will benefit from a mast climber.
Masonry: What benefits do MCWPs provide masonry contractors that other scaffolding systems can't?
Bridges: They're safer: fewer boards and built-in guardrails, tow boards and access. They save on labor: less set-up time. A contractor had a 70 percent increase in his production verses cost ratio on the very first day he used the scaffolding.
Hanna: They have a greater capacity. They give masonry contractors the ability to build a long platform. Masons can load it up and the bricklayers can work a long time without stopping.
Masonry: What does the future hold for mast climbers?
Bridges: All trades will start putting money toward the use of the scaffold instead of taking advantage of the mason. This would take the liability away from the masonry contractor and spread it among the responsible parties.
Hanna: Mast climbers have seen a lot of growth over the last 10 years, and they'll see even more growth over the next few years as the industries see the benefits.
About the Author
Masonry, the official publication of the Mason Contractors Association of America, covers every aspect of the mason contractor profession - equipment and techniques, building codes and standards, business planning, promoting your business, legal issues and more. Read or subscribe to Masonry magazine at www.masonrymagazine.com.