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» Film-Tech Forum   » Operations   » Film Handlers' Forum   » Whats the best way to move a projector? (Page 1)

 
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Author Topic: Whats the best way to move a projector?
Todd Cornwall
Film Handler

Posts: 91
From: Madison, WI
Registered: Feb 2004


 - posted 03-06-2018 08:41 PM      Profile for Todd Cornwall   Email Todd Cornwall   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
As the title says, we might need to move a bunch of old projectors since new digital projectors are in. Apparently the old projectors were basically moved aside and not actually put anyway. I would like to get them out of the way and in to a storage area, but was curious as to how to get them moved easily? Would they have to be taken apart? Is there some kind of dolly that would work for this? A few of them are on small platforms so they would need to be moved down 3-4 stairs as well.

Any ideas would be greatly appreciated

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Alexandre Pereira
Film Handler

Posts: 99
From: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Registered: Jan 2016


 - posted 03-06-2018 11:13 PM      Profile for Alexandre Pereira   Author's Homepage   Email Alexandre Pereira   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
An engine hoist works really well to lift projectors onto a push cart or pallet mover. Then the projector can be rolled away. Engine hoists are not very expensive and are easy to put away.

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Frank Cox
Phenomenal Film Handler

Posts: 1864
From: Melville Saskatchewan Canada
Registered: Apr 2011


 - posted 03-06-2018 11:54 PM      Profile for Frank Cox   Author's Homepage   Email Frank Cox   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
You won't be rolling it down any stairs like that.

Three men, a set of wrenches and a couple of cases of beer works well for that sort of a move, though.

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Phillip Grace
Expert Film Handler

Posts: 133
From: ACMI. Melbourne. Australia.
Registered: Mar 2004


 - posted 03-07-2018 03:26 AM      Profile for Phillip Grace   Email Phillip Grace   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I'm with Frank on that one. It also helps if you can arrange to be somewhere else when the move is taking place. [Smile]

Seriously, how you go about moving a projector depends on the type of projector, and how it is configured - a console type or a pedestal type etc. Also how much storage space is available is a factor. They take up more space when dismantled, but on the other hand the parts can be shelved to save floor area. Dismantling the machine offers the advantage of reducing the individual weights to be moved, along with protection of the mechanism etc. Moving a conventional pedestal machine in one piece can be hazardous. Typically they are top-heavy and not very well balanced.
There are all kinds of materials handling devices available, and something suitable for the job at hand and the space available in the projection room will probably exist.
I prefer to lift from underneath, rather than suspend from above, but have done both successfully. A pallet truck, or even some 2 inch lengths of pipe for rollers is handy. A selection of timber blocks and boards can be built up for a change of level. (Remember they used to lift locomotives a bit at a time with just levers and stacks of old sleepers). If you have to man-handle it, try not to have the whole machine off the ground at any one time.

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Barry Floyd
Phenomenal Film Handler

Posts: 1050
From: Lebanon, Tennessee, USA
Registered: Mar 2000


 - posted 03-07-2018 10:06 AM      Profile for Barry Floyd   Author's Homepage   Email Barry Floyd   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
We just recently moved our old 35mm machines from my garage back to a storage building at the drive-in. (I don't know why I'm keeping them!!)

Ours were pedestal mounted and we basically broke them down in to 4 pieces when we moved them. Removed the projector from the sound head and wrapped it up in blankets so we wouldn't damage it. Lifted the sound head off of the pedestal base (4 bolts and lots of muscle). Slid the lamphouse off the pedestal table, and then finally moved the pedestal out of the way.

When we got them back to the the theatre, we re-assembled them so they wouldn't take up so much floor space in the storage building. Not that hard to do, they are just heavy. I'm sure there will be some point when I get tired of moving them around and just chunk them in the dumpster... I still have my platters too... but probably not for long.

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Jack Ondracek
Film God

Posts: 2274
From: Port Orchard, WA, USA
Registered: Oct 2002


 - posted 03-07-2018 10:52 AM      Profile for Jack Ondracek   Author's Homepage   Email Jack Ondracek   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
You're not alone, Barry. My stuff is all out at the hangar. Gave myself 5 years to give sentiment time to override practicality. It hasn't, so this is probably the year I clean house.

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Julian Antos
Film Handler

Posts: 54
From: Chicago, IL, USA
Registered: Nov 2009


 - posted 03-07-2018 05:24 PM      Profile for Julian Antos   Email Julian Antos   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
This has been said in other threads I'm sure, but bears repeating.

If moving a projector for long term storage, it's a good idea to:
-Remove the flywheel from the soundhead so it's not putting a strain on bearings.
-Remove xenon lamps.
-Remove belts
-If kinoton SH put a piece of foam in between roller and sound drum so you don't wear a flat spot in the o ring. If simplex SH make sure arm is left open so you don't wear a flat spot in the rubber roller.
-Remove gate/trap and close gate mechanism.

If keeping everything disconnected but in one piece, I would at a minimum turn the mechanism over by hand (including rotating the flywheel) every so often to keep things from getting stiff.

Lastly, before scrapping anything, post here or on the art house convergence list to see if anyone wants it. There are many venues still running film several times a week for repertory and specialty screenings, and many technicians still keeping those machines running with a finite supply of spare parts.

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Dave Macaulay
Film God

Posts: 2038
From: Toronto, Canada
Registered: Apr 2001


 - posted 03-07-2018 06:35 PM      Profile for Dave Macaulay   Email Dave Macaulay   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I've seen electric stair climber dollies used, I think these can be rented? Pretty much a large 2-wheel "hand truck" with a little track between the wheels that motors up or down stairs. Complete Strong consoles with projector and rectifier moved up many stairs with no problem. They had extra batteries though - and needed them.

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Todd Cornwall
Film Handler

Posts: 91
From: Madison, WI
Registered: Feb 2004


 - posted 03-07-2018 07:12 PM      Profile for Todd Cornwall   Email Todd Cornwall   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I was thinking that Id have to take them apart in order to move them. I dont know what their plans are, but there a lot of them that need moving. 3 of them are on a platform, so loading them on to a dolly and taking them down the narrow 3-4 stairs might not even be an option. They are just in the way and I wanted to to simply put them somewhere safe and out of sight.

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Chris Markiewicz
Expert Film Handler

Posts: 200
From: Oakland, CA
Registered: Aug 2002


 - posted 03-07-2018 07:48 PM      Profile for Chris Markiewicz   Email Chris Markiewicz   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
It really depends on whether the projector is on a pedestal or attached to a console. If a pedestal, do as Barry says and break it down into at least four pieces. I would break the pedestal down too; the floor base is really heavy. If a console, break the projector head and soundhead off the console, get an electric stair-climber and four people to balance that sucker. so it doesn't kill someone. Some old rectifiers can also benefit from the stair-climber. Have good work gloves; you're going to get torn up.
Good luck!

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Phillip Grace
Expert Film Handler

Posts: 133
From: ACMI. Melbourne. Australia.
Registered: Mar 2004


 - posted 03-07-2018 11:13 PM      Profile for Phillip Grace   Email Phillip Grace   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Old projectors are going to be pretty oily once you start taking them to bits. When dismantling a machine I find it helps to put the various bits first into a large sized plastic garbage bag, then pad them with blankets etc. It helps contain the leakage.

Also. When moving large heavy objects, approach with caution, and do the move slowly. Momentum is a very powerful unseen force, and can bring you to grief real quick. [Smile]

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Dave Macaulay
Film God

Posts: 2038
From: Toronto, Canada
Registered: Apr 2001


 - posted 03-08-2018 09:47 AM      Profile for Dave Macaulay   Email Dave Macaulay   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
What kind of projectors are they, and on consoles or pedestals?
Simplex XL type projectors have oil in the bottom and pump it around for lube... if they've sat for years then draining the sump will get rid of almost all the oil.
Century projectors have oil in the intermittent, around 1/4 cup. It will dribble out if not upright.
Older Simplex and various other fairly rare ones may have oil in a sump or just in the intermittent, or even have a manual pump oiler.
Only very old gearbox type soundheads have oil inside... if yours look ancient and have the motor sticking straight out the front they probably have oil in a gearbox - that will leak out if inverted or tipped on the side. Newer soundheads don't have oil but may have a dashpot with a tablespoon or two of viscous silicon fluid that will spill out.
Pedestals can be brutal, the really old solid cast iron ones weigh hundreds of pounds. Put on ear protection and break them into manageable pieces with a sledge hammer. Newer "lightweight" ones with cast bits and sheet metal columns are not so heavy, can be moved by a couple of strong young guys.
Consoles are sheet metal and can be disassembled with wrenches or sawzall.
You will not make much money at the scrapyard, regardless. Scrap value will definitely not cover the cost of having them removed and transported to the yard.
If you want to keep the units together as museum pieces or to sell (note: they are worth nothing, and nobody is buying even at that price) then bring in professional movers. They have skill, experience... and insurance. If one of your employees gets injured or killed doing this work - you're screwed.

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Mark Gulbrandsen
Resident Trollmaster

Posts: 16061
From: Bountiful, Utah
Registered: Jun 99


 - posted 03-08-2018 09:52 AM      Profile for Mark Gulbrandsen   Email Mark Gulbrandsen   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
quote: Julian Antos
This has been said in other threads I'm sure, but bears repeating.

If moving a projector for long term storage, it's a good idea to:
-Remove the flywheel from the soundhead so it's not putting a strain on bearings.
-Remove xenon lamps.
-Remove belts
-If kinoton SH put a piece of foam in between roller and sound drum so you don't wear a flat spot in the o ring. If simplex SH make sure arm is left open so you don't wear a flat spot in the rubber roller.
-Remove gate/trap and close gate mechanism.

Oh heck, just shove them down the stairs! They are worth the same scrap value whole or in pieces. After all thats where they'll end up in the very near future.

The Scrap Man

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Phillip Grace
Expert Film Handler

Posts: 133
From: ACMI. Melbourne. Australia.
Registered: Mar 2004


 - posted 03-08-2018 05:26 PM      Profile for Phillip Grace   Email Phillip Grace   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Mark, you are such a sentimentalist! [Wink]

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Mike Blakesley
Film God

Posts: 12278
From: Forsyth, Montana
Registered: Jun 99


 - posted 03-08-2018 06:45 PM      Profile for Mike Blakesley   Author's Homepage   Email Mike Blakesley   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I know how he feels.....we did a ton of work to move our projector and platter into an area behind the screen to save it in case we ever needed it, or somebody would want it for valuable parts, etc. Needless to say it's still gathering the same dust it was when we moved it in there.

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