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The Foreigner - Lift and Trap


During the summer of 2014 at Totem Pole Playhouse, a production of The Foreigner was produced.  The show calls for a small trap down center that opens by a simple hinged door; a passage to the cellar.  In Act 2 the hinged door is swaped with a lift that allows an actor to desend slowly, as if he were melting into the floor.  The challenge was to allow a platform to lower down slowly and allow the trap door to swing back closed.  The trap was built over a forestage added to the apron of the stage.  The stage does not have any traps in it.  


I designed and built a small cable lift operated by a worm drive winch.  A Dewalt drill was used to operate the winch and make the lift go up and down.  The operater was located under the stage to mitigate noise and make for ease of operation.  There were four lifting cables that terminated at a clew, and then routed around a shop built muling block.  The platform was guided by blocks of UHMW and angle iron.

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