Scaffolding Terminology: Key Terms To Understand

Any time you are using some form of construction equipment, it is best if you are familiar with the language associated with that equipment. Whether you are taking instructions from a rental service professional who is explaining the equipment or reading the directions, knowledge is the key to staying safe. This is especially true with rented scaffolding equipment. Check out this short list of terms that may come up when you rent scaffolding equipment and the definitions you should know before you get started using the equipment on a job or project site. 

Braces - In terms of scaffolding, braces are horizontal or vertical pieces that either:

  • hold the deck in a fixed position
  • hold the scaffolding sturdy against the side of a building
  • hold the climbing fixture stable

Braces are most often removable parts that you will attach and secure once the scaffolding is set up wherever it is that you will be using it. In most cases, braces are made of angular steel, but they can also be made out of wood or other materials. 

Cleats - If you will be using the scaffolding on a sloped surface, your equipment may come with what is referred to as cleats. Cleats are usually made out of hard PVC plastic, metal, or concrete, but they all serve the same purpose: to stabilize the bottom legs of the scaffolding on the ground. If the scaffolding feet slip out of place, it causes the work platform to be unstable, which is a major safety concern while you are working. 

Deck - For all intents and purposes, the deck of scaffolding equipment is always going to be the platform from which you will stand to work. The deck reaches across the setup to provide a place for you to stand, set your tools, and remain stable while doing different tasks. The deck of scaffolding can vary in style and shape depending on the type of scaffolding equipment you rent. 

Fall-Arrest System - Many scaffolding rental companies will supply you with safety gear along with your rented equipment, and a fall-arrest system could be one of those pieces of safety equipment. This system consists of an anchor that secures a line to the scaffolding equipment and an anchor that you will attach to a harness you have on. In the event of a fall, the system will catch you before you hit the ground. 

For more information, contact your local scaffolding rentals service.