Chicago Flyhouse Blog

Elgin Community College Gets a Lift

Posted by Flyhouse on Sep 11, 2019 3:01:28 PM

Arts Center Updated Ahead of 25th Anniversary

Flyhouse’s Safer Venue service provides customers with comprehensive annual inspections and repairs. Nobody likes major repair work or safety incidents that could have been prevented—yearly maintenance is a must. 

The Elgin Community College Arts Center’s recent Safer Venue Inspection identified several rigging issues that needed to be addressed. Flyhouse is always inventing better ways to make rigging systems operate smoother and safer, and our annual venue visits provide the opportunity for improvements and updates. 

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In addition to regular maintenance, Flyhouse was also awarded a larger renovation project at the Art Center; its scope was designed by theater consultant Bill Connor Associates, LLC. The project included the installation of nine custom ZipLift counterweight assist hoists with a custom head block, which allowed the powered hoist to easily retrofit into their existing system. This newly designed hoist can safely move a lineset up to 1000 pounds out of weight. The orchestra shells that exist at Elgin CC weigh close to 4000 pounds and now with the theater upgrades provided, operators are able to move them by the push of a button instead of hanging on the handline hoping that they move a few inches.

Flyhouse has been moving scenery and performers with our custom designed ZipLift hoists since 1998 and we’re extremely experienced in automating things. Our newest hoist is currently being used at Elgin CC but it’s Elgin's custom control system that makes this project truly unique. In just two weeks, we modified the system to integrate all nine units into one custom cabinet for all of the power and controls. Now all nine hoists are controlled by one pendant while the person is standing anywhere onstage, keeping a line of sight on the hoist-assisted linesets flying these extremely large amounts of weight to programmable trims.

In recent years, the Elgin CC Arts Center has primarily been used for concerts, but now the venue is suited for musical productions and much more. The repairs and updates will be complete in time for the 25th anniversary season which begins this fall. We can’t wait to see how these facility improvements put a little more zip in future Elgin CC productions!

Topics: Hoist, Theatrical Rigging, Flyhouse Projects