All Souls Unitarian Church

Local Church Changes Bulbs

We got a call from a local church in need of the Light Bulb Scaffold™ System year ago. All Souls Unitarian Universalist Church is a beautiful church set in a wooded area here in Shreveport, LA. They had bad bulbs in four of their eight down lights in the ceiling over their pews. The pastor, Barbara Jarrell, and two volunteers came by with a utility trailer and rented a system from us.

After trying suction cups on poles and other methods to change their bulbs, they came to the same conclusion everyone else does: you just have to physically get up there and get your hands in the fixture. Most all commercial ceiling light fixtures have a lens covering the bulb, or a bulb of a size that requires hands-on replacement.

The first step is to assemble the Spanner Kit. It lets you go over and around obstructions (like church pews), and the legs adjust up and down to make up for different floor levels.

Barbara (left) and volunteers Terry McNeil (center) and his daughter Ashton (right) set the main beams in place for the first tower location.

The components are easy to handle – no part weighs more than 35 pounds.

Scaffolding for uneven floors

Ashton and her dad Terry fasten the Frame Beams to the Main Beams.

No tools are needed to assemble the Light Bulb Scaffold™ System.

Scaffolding for stepped floors in churches and auditoriums

It’s easier to assemble the Spanner Kit (the beams and adjustable legs) using the regular feet instead of casters.

Since the tower will be rolled side to side to change bulbs on both sides of the church, at this point they swap out the feet for the casters.

Lightbulb changing scaffolding

Lock the casters and start setting frames. The first couple of frames can be passed up by hand.

Barbara is lowering the frame into the stack pins welded to the Frame Beams.

We use high-tensile tubing to keep the frames light, yet incredibly strong. They weigh only 35 pounds.

Best light bulb changer scaffolding

A light-weight gin pole with a rope and pulley is provided with the Light Bulb Scaffold™ System. It locks to the frames at any height needed.

The person on the ground pulls the rope to lift the parts up to the man on the tower. All the man on the tower has to do is guide the part into place. There is no awkward balancing act trying to support the weight of the frame while stabbing it on the stack pins. The man up top always feels safe and secure while building the tower.

Church scaffolding

While the person on the ground is supporting the weight of the frame (35 pounds), the person on the tower simply guides the frame onto the stack pins as it’s lowered.

Lightbulb ladder alternative

Changing the bulb using Lightbulb Scaffolding.

Lightbulb change ladder

With the first bulb changed, it was time to roll the platform to the other side of the church and change the corresponding bulb.

The guardrails were removed to miss the suspended floodlights on the right. Those bulbs were changed out as well, even though only 2 of the 4 were burned out.

Lightbulb change ladder for churches

Ashton uses the rope and pulley on the gin pole to send the bulbs up to Terry.

Lightbulb ladder for churches

Changing another bad bulb. The ring you see to the right of his elbow is the trim ring that’s tethered to the fixture.

Church and theater scaffolding

Now it’s time to move up the steps to change bulbs over another row of pews. It took about 10 minutes to bring the aluminum decks and frames down so the spanner kit could be lifted up and over the pews to the next row.

You could leave some frames on the Spanner Kit base if you have a little more manpower on hand.

Church & theater scaffolding for sloping floors

The Spanner Kit base is in position to go back up with the tower.

Lightbulb changing system scaffolding

Barbara and Ashton begin to set frames. It took about 20 minutes to rebuild the tower and then it was rolled side to side to change bulbs over this row.

Lightbulb changing system scaffolding

Terry snaps the 22-pound gin pole to the center of the first frame to continue up with the tower.

Lightbulb changer for churches