Friday, August 21, 2009

Pultruded Composite Scaffolding

Making scaffolding out of composite materials seems like it should be an obvious decision. Planks would be lightweight, non-conductive, strong, durable, not absorb moisture, and never rot. Although the concept seems like a no-brainer, it has taken time to make inroads.

Wood, steel, and aluminum, the traditional saffolding planks are inexpensive, familar, and proven. For someone to try and enter this market, trying to convince construction companies to switch to a more expensive product, especally in this construction enviroment, would be a serious challenge. Not to mention the hurdel in code certification and the ever present liability risk of someone getting injured using a plank.

This is why my hat goes off to Tim Bothwell, who I have recently learned from this article, that he has been spending many years developing and selling a pultruded composite scaffolding system. His company, Bothwell Composite Plank System, is said to have made 10,000 planks in the last 3 years. Part of his success has been the targeting of niche power generation and offshore oil markets.

It seems Bothwell has partnered with Top Glass out of Italy, which was recently acquired by Kemrock Industries out of India.

Photo credit: kevindooly via flicker

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