No matter whether you are working on a huge construction site or carrying out some more small scale building work at home, the chances are that you will require propping equipment at some point during the project. Props can be used for everything including holding slabs in place while the cement is drying, holding doorways in position before the frame is fitted, and even holding up floors during the early stages of constructing multi-storey buildings. Propping equipment has even been used to shore up entire buildings in the event of fire damage or demolitions.
The scale of the project will probably dictate what kind of propping equipment is required, but their are certain styles that are suited to specific functions – and choosing the wrong kind of prop could not only delay the project or increase costs as the damage caused by the wrong equipment has to be fixed.
Tilt props are fairly self-explanatory. These are props that lean at an angle up against walls or slabs of concrete to temporarily hold them in position while the mortar or glue is drying or before they have been secured in position with joints. Builders can choose from propping equipment made of aluminium, which is much lighter and useful if a lot of props are needed, or the more standard push-pull props which are developing every year to be able to withstand greater weights and pressures.
The nature of propping equipment is that it is temporary. Sometimes the use of props is planned, such as on a construction site, but there are occasions when they are needed in an emergency, either because of damage to buildings or unexpected problems with projects. In these situations, a prop that is strong and secure, yet fast to assemble is what is needed. The Acrow prop system fits the bill perfectly, and is common on building sites across the UK. Even those unfamiliar with construction projects will have seen these props in use; they look like ordinary scaffolding poles but they run from ceiling to floor where they are braced and locked in position, usually using a sturdy block of wood to provide a little give.
These are the most likely props that home construction projects might require; larger sites use models such as the shore 1000 system, which can hold weights of up to a massive 1,000 kiloNewtons or about 100 tonnes, the slimline titan props which are ideal for squeezing into small spaces, and the huge trishare props, a free standing support perfect for jobs on the exterior of buildings. A construction expert is the best person to ask for advice if you think you may need propping equipment on a DIY project; there are even several companies that will hire and set up the equipment for you, returning to take it away when the work is completed.