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Advice : working with ladders on uneven ground

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Post Tue Aug 21, 2018 11:26 am

Advice : working with ladders on uneven ground

Hi Guy's,

I've been putting this job off for ages as unsure how to tackle it.
The ground slopes quite a bit, any advice on how to re-fit signs safely without breaking my neck!?
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Post Tue Aug 21, 2018 12:02 pm

Re: Advice : working with ladders on uneven ground

i would say 2 options, have a second man to basically stop your ladders slipping or use a tower and level it with adgustable feet
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Post Tue Aug 21, 2018 12:16 pm

Re: Advice : working with ladders on uneven ground

James, if you get one of the little giant ladders, they have an extension on them for something just like this, I got caught out a couple of weeks ago with this same issue.
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Post Tue Aug 21, 2018 12:32 pm

Re: Advice : working with ladders on uneven ground

Little giant are the best but you can get a set from screwfix that do the same for about 90 quid
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Post Tue Aug 21, 2018 1:01 pm

Re: Advice : working with ladders on uneven ground

I'd have stuck a couple of boards under the (short) leg, but I suppose this is frowned upon these days. :rollseyes:
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Post Tue Aug 21, 2018 1:31 pm

Re: Advice : working with ladders on uneven ground

I take it its faced fixed, I would get two people, a ladder each against the wall either side of the sign.
The ladder nearest the gates will need a bit of adjustment ( borrow a couple of boards from Neil :smiles: ) but the side nearer the road looks pretty good... be up in no time
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Post Tue Aug 21, 2018 3:43 pm

Re: Advice : working with ladders on uneven ground

NeilRoss wrote:I'd have stuck a couple of boards under the (short) leg, but I suppose this is frowned upon these days. :rollseyes:


As long as you've completed a risk assessment and method statement and you're wearing a hard hat, hi vis vest, and safety boots... you should be alright
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Post Tue Aug 21, 2018 8:53 pm

Re: Advice : working with ladders on uneven ground

NeilRoss wrote:I'd have stuck a couple of boards under the (short) leg, but I suppose this is frowned upon these days. :rollseyes:

I have been there as a painter at up to 36 ft off the ground.
Always had a human "stopper" to prevent slip---
Barry
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Post Wed Aug 22, 2018 11:49 am

Re: Advice : working with ladders on uneven ground

Thanks for the replies. Will definitely look into these adjustable ladders, Dan and Iain. Think I'll give the wood prop a miss Neil :lol:
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Post Thu Aug 23, 2018 8:09 am

Re: Advice : working with ladders on uneven ground

Phill Fenton wrote:
NeilRoss wrote:I'd have stuck a couple of boards under the (short) leg, but I suppose this is frowned upon these days. :rollseyes:


As long as you've completed a risk assessment and method statement and you're wearing a hard hat, hi vis vest, and safety boots... you should be alright


You forgot glasses and gloves. Then fill out a SPA when onsite that is basically just a repeat of you risk assessment.

Ladder will go nowhere as you can use all the paper work to level the ground
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Post Thu Aug 23, 2018 11:13 pm

Re: Advice : working with ladders on uneven ground

I've got 2 sets of combination ladders by Halio. these have an adjustable foot for working on uneven ground. Excuse the advertising on the image, didn't buy from them it was just the first picture I found lol

halio ladder.jpg
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Post Thu Aug 23, 2018 11:48 pm

Re: Advice : working with ladders on uneven ground

Martin Pearson wrote:I've got 2 sets of combination ladders by Halio. these have an adjustable foot for working on uneven ground. Excuse the advertising on the image, didn't buy from them it was just the first picture I found lol

halio ladder.jpg
Now that is a cool idea :-)
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Post Sun Sep 23, 2018 9:02 pm

Re: Advice : working with ladders on uneven ground

I think that looks so unstable, how does it feel Martin once you up the ladder? I use little giant ladders with bolted on adjustable legs
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Post Sun Sep 23, 2018 11:31 pm

Re: Advice : working with ladders on uneven ground

Get a pair of aluminium trestles and catwalk. you wont look back...
they are up in under a minute and very easy to do any vinyl installs and sign installs.
These will do 95% of sign installs and vinyl installs of every vehicle on the road.
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Post Mon Sep 24, 2018 12:16 am

Re: Advice : working with ladders on uneven ground

Robert Lambie wrote:Get a pair of aluminium trestles and catwalk. you wont look back...
they are up in under a minute and very easy to do any vinyl installs and sign installs.
These will do 95% of sign installs and vinyl installs of every vehicle on the road.
What kind of height can these take you to Robert do you know?
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Post Mon Sep 24, 2018 12:49 am

Re: Advice : working with ladders on uneven ground

Vehicles wise, we have wrapped literally hundreds of artic lorry sized vehicles very easily...
you can take the platform right to the top rung of the trestles.
we have both 8ft and 10ft trestles with 8ft and 10ft catwalks. if you buy 10ft and on the top rung, you have your mans head height plus his arm stretch, which will give you your max reach. lets say 17ft...
these get the vast majority of shop front signs and the like also... very seldom do we require more for general sign work.

here is a video from about 11 years ago... this was a colour change using cast vinyl with application tape.
we shot it purely as a bit of a laugh because the others with me took cover from the rain and i plodded on. :lol:
you can see how easy it is to work with the trestles even on a large stone chip uneven ground in hard falling rain.

Watch on youtube.com
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Post Mon Sep 24, 2018 7:03 am

Re: Advice : working with ladders on uneven ground

Thanks for sharing this Robert. Was this air release vinyl? Can you get away without using the application tape? Using application tape to avoid stretching/ scratching, or?
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Post Tue Sep 25, 2018 7:50 am

Re: Advice : working with ladders on uneven ground

Fit middle of the night pull the van along side, up on the roof (where dark clothing) take the bulb out of the end of the drill, slide the panels off the roof onto the sign (careful to be the right side up - easy to get this bit wrong in the dark) Fix as usual Stevie wonder style. And disappear off into the night. No ladder log required.
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Post Tue Sep 25, 2018 9:18 am

Re: Advice : working with ladders on uneven ground

On a serious note on this subject. A builder mate of mine popped in yesterday with his arm in plaster and bandage.

He fell off a small 4 run step ladder that was on uneven ground and literally snapped in half his forearm bone mid way between his elbow and wrist. It was hanging in the opposite direction it should have been :shocked:

5 hours of surgery to plate it back together 10 weeks in plaster and no heavy lifting for at least 3 months after that.
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Post Tue Sep 25, 2018 5:37 pm

Re: Advice : working with ladders on uneven ground

Scott Girdwood wrote:I think that looks so unstable, how does it feel Martin once you up the ladder? I use little giant ladders with bolted on adjustable legs


Scott I originally had the 3 x 12 step version & used them at full extension on quite a few occasions sometimes higher than I should really have been but don't tell anyone :lol: never had any problems what so ever, the base is about 4 foot wide so makes a pretty stable platform. When they got stolen I bought the 3 x 9 step version simply because they were (slightly) lighter & easier to manage & since they were still tall enough to do almost all of the work I did it seemed to make sense.

There have been a few occasions where I wished there was a similar bar that could be fitted when using them as a combination ladder :lol: :lol:
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Post Tue Sep 25, 2018 7:09 pm

Re: Advice : working with ladders on uneven ground

Pane Talev wrote:Thanks for sharing this Robert. Was this air release vinyl? Can you get away without using the application tape? Using application tape to avoid stretching/ scratching, or?


No, this video was posted on Youtube about 11 years ago and it was already a couple of years old i think when loaded. Air release wasn't around back then. The vinyl is Oracal 951 Cast which has an aggressive adhesive and a thin film. So in warm - hot weather it would be a bit of a nightmare to work with without the application tape. That and as you say, the face would scratch due to the airborne dust in the huge yards the trucks are parked in.
All the companies trucks above 7.5ton are constantly on the road and only come in to get washed and re-filled and back out again. so we have a time window to get the truck done. It was actually a very warm day then the sky opened up. still warm but rained hard so i kept at it. once the trucks are changed blue, the graphics/text was applied on top. so flood coating in blue was easier and more cost effective.

this was a one off though, ide never apply anything wet, even though the majority of installers would apply water before the install. which in my opinion is a remedy for disaster or shortening the life of the job. certainly would not tick the manufacturer's warranty box's.

all that said, you can see how quick and easy it is to work with these trestles. from bottom step via catwalk to the top step via catwalk. from vans and trucks to shop fronts. anything out with the 17ft reach, i switch to a cherry picker. working off ladders just isnt worth the risk, and i have done it loads of the 28 years ive been doing this.
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Post Tue Sep 25, 2018 8:58 pm

Re: Advice : working with ladders on uneven ground

Was surprised to see you using trestle and board without guard rail Rob, didn't think that was allowed anymore. Don't get me wrong have done loads from trestle and board in the past and is quick but understand is no longer acceptable with many sites we work on
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Post Wed Sep 26, 2018 2:29 am

Re: Advice : working with ladders on uneven ground

Colin Bland wrote:Was surprised to see you using trestle and board without guard rail Rob, didn't think that was allowed anymore. Don't get me wrong have done loads from trestle and board in the past and is quick but understand is no longer acceptable with many sites we work on


Colin if you read Roberts last post he said that Video was about 13 or 14 years old so not something that he has done recently :lol: :lol:
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Post Wed Sep 26, 2018 7:48 pm

Re: Advice : working with ladders on uneven ground

Thanks Martin I missed that bit
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Post Wed Sep 26, 2018 7:52 pm

Re: Advice : working with ladders on uneven ground

The answer to all our high access problems

Watch on youtube.com
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Post Thu Sep 27, 2018 11:53 pm

Re: Advice : working with ladders on uneven ground

Robert Lambie wrote:
Pane Talev wrote:Thanks for sharing this Robert. Was this air release vinyl? Can you get away without using the application tape? Using application tape to avoid stretching/ scratching, or?


No, this video was posted on Youtube about 11 years ago and it was already a couple of years old i think when loaded. Air release wasn't around back then. The vinyl is Oracal 951 Cast which has an aggressive adhesive and a thin film. So in warm - hot weather it would be a bit of a nightmare to work with without the application tape. That and as you say, the face would scratch due to the airborne dust in the huge yards the trucks are parked in.
All the companies trucks above 7.5ton are constantly on the road and only come in to get washed and re-filled and back out again. so we have a time window to get the truck done. It was actually a very warm day then the sky opened up. still warm but rained hard so i kept at it. once the trucks are changed blue, the graphics/text was applied on top. so flood coating in blue was easier and more cost effective.

this was a one off though, ide never apply anything wet, even though the majority of installers would apply water before the install. which in my opinion is a remedy for disaster or shortening the life of the job. certainly would not tick the manufacturer's warranty box's.

all that said, you can see how quick and easy it is to work with these trestles. from bottom step via catwalk to the top step via catwalk. from vans and trucks to shop fronts. anything out with the 17ft reach, i switch to a cherry picker. working off ladders just isnt worth the risk, and i have done it loads of the 28 years ive been doing this.


Thank you for your reply Robert.

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