Puppeteers Cooperative Blog

What's up with the puppeteers

Making a pulley system for the giant mobiles in Emmanuel Church

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mobile

I used to just get up in the ceiling, then drop a series of lines to a person on the floor, who would tie them onto the mobile pieces, but that has become too unwieldy, with the mobiles having to come up and down, and me wanting to try out new ones…

The new pulley system goes in four lines through gratings in the ceiling of the sanctuary (the red is pew cushions)

gratingsdark

at a crossing in a catwalk more or less central. The lines go up through a pulley or two to go above the head on anybody on the crosswalk.

cross

then down again along the side of the catwalk. The height of the ceiling is about 60′; the catwalk is about 80′ long.

walkway

At the end of the catwalk, they turn a corner

corner

to go along a slanted ladder, which leads to a trapdoor, where they turn again, and go down.

traptop

The open trapdoor, where I spent hours untangling string. I mentioned 60′ high, right?

trapdoordown

 

The view from the ladder.

scaryladder

Don’t worry, I wore safety equipment!

safety1

The four main lines are each about 200′ long, with pull-down lines about 100′ long.  It’s the biggest contraption I’ve ever built, and nobody can see it.  Maybe I’ll do some giant marionettes.

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