My wife and I recently attended a Red Hot Chili Peppers concert at the Wells Fargo Arena. It was an extremely fun and lively performance. The standout feature of the concert was the visual effects mechanism they had strung from the ceiling. It consisted of roughly 1,200 (that’s a guess), individual lights strung from individually powered cable reel winches (able to move up and down independently). The lights had a total travel distance of maybe 75ft. The speed which the lights traveled up and down was variable, and surprisingly fast. The lights themselves were LED, which had the ability to change colors. The programming for these lights was also very impressive. Throughout the concert different three-dimensional geometric shapes and patterns emerged, timed to the beat of the music. This was possible as each light had its own unique control; all together, the essence of shapes became noticeable. One memorable moment was during the song ‘Under the Bridge’, the band’s symbol was flipping vertically. The effect was very hypnotic. I was in awe of the technical hurdles needed to pull off such an amazing display. More info on this display can be found here.
The ability to change height can give dramatic stage effects or it can allow pieces to fit together better. Attending this recent concert and the performance of the light effects made me think about our newly developed hydraulic swivel that has an adjustable height torque arm. This consists of four t-slot grooves machined into the outside face of the spool. An adjustable collar with four axially drilled holes allows t-slot nuts to fit into the grooves. When the t-slot nuts get tightened down with hex head bolts, the collar is locked into place. The torque arm is bolted to the adjustable collar. Below the adjustable collar is a large diameter lip seal. Once the hydraulic swivel is placed into the machine the adjustable collar is then pushed down against the main deck of the machine and then locked down. This places slight pressure on the lip seal against the deck surface. This keeps liquid and contaminants from making their way below the deck surface, which is the goal of the feature.
While UEA doesn’t perform on an entertainment stage, our products do perform everyday on the world stage, and they won’t leave you ‘under a bridge’. Call, email, or visit our website for more information on all of our custom rotary package solutions.
Senior Design Engineer