Lifting beam and chain hoist installed in new tower block basement2 December 2022
UK lifting equipment company Hoist & Winch has recently installed a concrete ceiling-mounted 7.5t safe working load (SWL) lifting beam and manual chain hoist into the basement energy room of a new, large tower block.
The installation was completed for one of the UK’s biggest construction companies in a development that is part of a large-scale regeneration project providing 5,500 sustainable new homes in north London.
The equipment is a permanent fixture and will be used for lifting in or out electric motors, pumps, gearboxes and other items of heavy plant when they need to be replaced or sent away for maintenance work.
After being awarded a contract following a formal tender process, Hoist & Winch set about identifying the optimal solution.
Due to restricted access into the basement area, the company opted for a two-piece lifting beam design with an overall length of 7m. To join the two lifting beam sections, Hoist & Winch designed a central splice joint of bolted construction with a reinforced bottom beam flange.
In order to spread the lifting loads over a greater area of the concrete ceiling slab, the lifting beam would have to be mounted via four intermediate cross members, each having a four-bolt anchor fix in the concrete ceiling at both ends, which would also make it possible to deliver the beam to site fully dismantled for ease of transportation and access. M24 resin anchors with an embedment of 255mm into the 400mm-deep reinforced concrete slab would fix the cross members directly to the ceiling.
Hoist & Winch submitted the design drawings and structural calculations for the lifting beam and loading anchors for the approval of the main contractor’s engineers.
With the design approved, Hoist & Winch progressed to manufacturing and delivery to site. Using building column positions as datum points, the installation line of the lifting beam was marked out while working from scissor lifts and an aluminium scaffold tower located on the upper mezzanine floor. A surveyor’s laser line initially identified the correct lifting beam position, prior to overlaying with red chalk to ensure accuracy for the duration of the installation work.
Raising the two lifting beam sections into position required the installation of eight 1.0t SWL hand chain blocks, with each one suspended from M16 swivel eye bolts supported from flush-mounted anchored resin inserts drilled into the concrete ceiling slab.
Following sample pull load testing, Hoist & Winch raised each lifting beam section into position using four 1.0t SWL hand chain blocks. To raise the lifting beams to the full height and clamp them against the concrete ceiling slab ready for drilling, the company used two lifting rigs per beam section.
The first lifting beam section that was manoeuvred into position also included a 7.5t SWL hand chain block, which was rolled onto the lifting beam at low level using a 1.0t SWL hand chain block temporarily suspended from local steelwork. Once both lifting beams were in position, Hoist & Winch joined the two lifting beam sections using the bolted splice plate.
Next, the company carried out the necessary ceiling slab drilling and installed all 32 ceiling anchor points after cleaning each hole with a special heavy-duty internal brush and suction pump. Following the specified resin curing time, Hoist & Winch could tighten each anchor bolt.
The final installation and test operation was a Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations (LOLER) inspection of the lifting beam and manual chain hoist unit. This included dynamic load testing of the entire runway beam length with a 7.5t skid-mounted test load followed by a 125% static proof load test in accordance with BS 2853 2011.
“Working as a subcontractor for the company supplying and installing the plant and services in the basement energy room, we delivered an entire turnkey lifting system solution,” said Andy Allen, director of Hoist & Winch. “At completion, we provided the client with an overall project records and documentation package before clearing all site equipment and undertaking customer handover. This project is just one of many exemplifying the meticulous, competent and professional approach that Hoist & Winch customers can expect from our highly knowledgeable team.”