Manually Operated Rigging adds the ability to lower and raise pipe battens by counterbalancing the load with an arbor loaded with counterweight (steel plates). This is typically called Counterweight Rigging and requires manual operation of each line set. A line set consists of a steel pipe batten suspended from lifting cables which pass over loft block sheaves, then over the head block at one side of the stage and down to the counterweight arbor. The key with manual rigging is balance. While a properly balanced load is extremely safe, an improperly balanced load poses great danger. This system requires a trained and experienced operator and strict safety precautions.

In a single purchase counterweight set the weight and travel distance of the loaded batten equals the weight and travel distance of the properly loaded arbor. These sets are simple to install and operate, and are very efficient.

In buildings where space for vertical travel of the arbor is not sufficient for single purchase sets to operate, the counterweight side of the system can be double purchased. This is a condition that requires twice the amount of weight on the arbor side. However, only one foot of arbor travel is required for each two feet of batten travel. Double purchase systems are very useful in some situations, but they are more expensive and more difficult to install.

Rigging Equipment

Head Block


The stationary sheave or block assembly directly above the counterweight arbor or pin rail. The head block permits lift lines to change direction. In wire rope systems, the head block is also grooved to allow the purchase line to change direction by 180 degrees.


12″ diameter safety yellow cast iron sheave
10 gauge steel side plate
2″ x 2-1/2″ base angle
1″ tapered roller bearings
Minimum WLL capacity of 2,500 lbs.
Painted prior to assembly


Upright or underhung mounting
6 line blocks for 6″ centers and greater
Single purchase or double purchase
Custom mounting options

Loft Block


The overhead block thorugh which one or more lift lines pass before being attached to the load being lifted or supported.


8″ diameter safety yellow cast iron or nylon sheave
11 gauge steel side plate
17mm sealed ball bearings
WLL capacity of 1,000 lbs
30″ long base angle 2″ x 1½” x 1¼”
Painted prior to assembly


Upgright or underhung mounting
2 – line idlers
Custom mounting options

Mule Block


A supplementary block located between the head and loft blocks, designed for the specific purpose of changing the direction of the line travel.


8″ diameter safety yellow cast iron
1/8″ steel side plate
Sealed ball bearings
WLL capacity of 1,000 lbs
Mouting holes specific to project
Painted prior to assembly


1,4, and 8 lines sheaves
Swivel Stand



A moveable rigid carriage assembly and inclusive guides that holds weights to counterbalance a load.


¾” cold rolled steel rods with double nuts top and bottom
5/16″ formed arbor top and bottom
Safety yellow spreader plates every 2ft
Spreader plate label every 2ft
Welded front locking color
Threaded plastic knob handle on locking collars
Steel captured UHMW guide shoes
8 lift line attachments
Painted prior to assembly


6″, 8″, 10″ 12″ centers
Single and double purchase

Floor Block


Designed to remove slack from a purchase line, prevent the purchase line from twisting in its travel, and from rubbing against wire ropes, structural framing, and adjoining equipment.


10″ diameter safety yellow cast iron
7 guage steel side plate
Sealed ball bearings
Unit self-weight of 30 lbs
¾” rope groove
Steel guide shoe
Painted prior to assembly


6″, 8″, 10″ , 12″ guide centers
Custom options available

Rope Lock


A device attached to the lock rail that uses adjustable cams to grip the operating line of a counterweight rigging system. The handle and locking ring allow for the operating line to be locked or released.


Single Unit A536 Ductile Iron body with Safety Yellow Power Coated 10″ handle
2-gripping cams with adjustment bolt for rope diameters of 5/8” – 1”
Safety Yellow Vinyl coated rope locking ring
Bumper molded for quiet handle release
Holes for lock-out locations
Designed to hold a 50 lbs out-of-balance load

J-Bar/Guide Rail


A means of guiding the counterweight arbor throughout its travel in the vertical plane, the guide rail prevents horizontal or twisting motions of the arbor.


6063-T5 anodized black aluminum extruded J-Bar guide rail
1½” x 1 7/8″ x 3/16″ guide
All corners radiused
Bottom “J” designed to capture 5/16″ hex bold
Provided in standard 20’0″ sections
J-Bar provided pre-drilled
Supporting wall batten and wall knee bracket slotted for ease of installation


6″, 8″, 10″ , 12″ centers

Lock Rail


A structural railing that supports the rope locks.


¼” steel Formed top member
Tube or Formed angle iron stands


Top tube steel member
Incorporated bottom crash rail
Gallery Mounting
Capstan winch reaction bar
6″, 8″, 10″ 12″ centers


Pin Rail


A rigidly mounted railing and its associated supports, with holes designed to accept belaying pins. Used in tying off rope and sandbag rigging lines and transfer the unbalanced system loads to the building structure.


6″ diameter schedule 40 steep pipe
Belay pin hold spacing as specified


Various Pin Centers
Wood or Steel belay Pins
Single or Double Rails
Galley Mounting
Standalone Units

Index Light


A high quality 2 circuit dimmable LED unit – white for work light in any area of the stage; blue for lock rail or pin rail running lights. Units are available in 4′ and 8′ long sections and come with extruded rails on two sides for flexible mounting configurations. Index strip lights and wall mounted controls are UL listed.


Assembly is UL Listed
Formed 16 guage steel housing
White reflector interior with matte black exterior
Both ends of a unit supplied with multi-pin connector
(2) Position extruded mounting rails
(1) White LED circuit
(1) Blue LED circuit
Integrated wall mount slider control
120v 3amp service required (based on 50ft system)
4ft and 8ft standard lengths
7lbs & 14 lbs respectively

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Rigging Stage Rigging Manual Counterweight Rigging