Stage Technologies and Delstar Engineering supplied show action equipment for five parade floats for a celebration parade at a theme park. Three of the floats incorporate hydraulic telescoping masts with a travel of around 12’, one of which includes performer flying winches. Another float has an automated storage facility inside the support truss and the final float makes use of an ingenious ‘parallel linkage’ technique to keep an airborne ship level when the structure is moving.
The floats are built on golf carts and there are just eight batteries per float to power all the equipment. The challenge for the design team was not capacity but how quickly the energy could be drawn out of the batteries for the high-power moves. The solution was arrived at in Delstar’s factory, where hydraulic specialists created highly-customised, battery-powered power packs, each individually shaped to fit within the available spaces inside the floats.
It’s the first time BigTow winches have been run off battery power and our electrical engineers looked at various alternatives, finding that the best option was to adapt the advanced drive technology and architecture used in the Explorer 2 free-drive stage truck. The control had to be kept very simple so it could be integrated into the float cabs and operated by drivers and was achieved using an easy-touch interface derived from Siemens Simotion drive control.