GME Blog

Climb Higher - A blog about Tower Climbing Safety Gear

  1. Product Spotlight: FireIce

    Fire is one of the most dangerous things that can occur on a job site. That means that proper fire safety and fire prevention can not only keep you and your crew safe but also save time and money. When it comes to fire safety, traditionally there haven’t been many options, but that is all starting to change. This week our Gear Experts® are going to break down the FireIce line from GelTech Solutions.

    Overview: FireIce Fire Extinguishing Coating


     

    FireIce is extremely effective in preventing and suppressing almost any kind of fire. From electrical fires, arcing metal fires, lithium battery fires, and even some accelerant fires, this gel is typically more effective than traditional fire extinguishers. There are some fires that FireIce won’t work on, but we will address that a bit later.

    Multiple Options Available


     

    Whether you are using FireIce for preventative measures or using it to help fight a fire in emergencies, FireIce is available in a variety of different application methods. From spray bottles and extinguishers to 5-gallon buckets and 60-gallon systems, you can rest assured that you can build the perfect system for your crew.

    What is it?


     

    So, what exactly is FireIce? All FireIce products are made from the same super absorbent cross-linked polymer that absorbs up to 400 times its weight in water. When properly mixed (with water) it acts as a gel that can be coated onto surfaces that are on fire or at risk of being ignited. And, unlike traditional ABC fire extinguishers, this gel is an eco-friendly substance that can be applied to any surface and will simply wash away with time or water exposure.

    Fun fact: The cross-linked polymer (the one that absorbs 400 times its weight in water) was originally used in an FDA approved appetite suppression pill. So, technically you could eat FireIce without any negative effects on you or your body. That means you don’t need to worry about respirators when applying the solution, and it won’t hurt the people, plants, or animals that come into contact with it after it has been used.

    How it Works


     

    Now that we know what it is, what it is made of, and that it is safe, let’s talk a bit about how it works. As we mentioned above, it’s not just great for fighting fires, but it is also good for pre-treatment to prevent surfaces from igniting while hot work (like welding) is being performed. In the event that there is already a fire, FireIce simply coats the surface - removing oxygen from and extinguishing the flame, and preventing reignition by rapidly cooling the surface to temperatures below combustable levels.

    Class B Fires


     

    Class B fires are fires that involve flammable liquids like grease, gasoline, and oil. FireIce products are not recommended for use on class B fires. For class B fires a fire extinguisher with an A-B, B-C, or A-B-C rating should be used.

    Application Methods


     

    As we mentioned earlier, FireIce is available in a variety of different applications methods. It comes in spray bottles, extinguishers, and 5-gallon buckets. But, GelTech has also come up with a unique solution for hot work on cell towers – the 60-gallon system. The Cell Tower Protection System, or CTP for short, is a 60-gallon system that creates the perfect mixture and includes a hose and spray nozzle for application. With the CTP you can coat over 200 feet of cables or the interior of a monopole, so you can do your welding and cutting with peace of mind.

    This product comes in a powder form, so with proper storage, it will never expire. And, it can be self-refilled which allows for more effective inventory management.

    Legal Requirements


     

    FireIce is extremely effective at putting out fires. But, it has not been approved as a replacement by OSHA. If you are required by OSHA to have a certain type or size of fire extinguisher (in your truck or on the job site) you will need to continue to have that extinguisher present. In those situations a FireIce extinguisher can be a good addition to your fire safety plan.

    If you’ve got more questions about our selection of FireIce line of products, click here to contact one of our Gear Experts®.

    **The content of this blog is not intended to replace proper, in-depth training. Manufacturer’s instructions must also be followed and reviewed before any equipment is used.

    Click here to see our full selection of FireIce products.

    FireIce: The Video


     

    Gear Up with Gear Experts: The Podcast


     

    We're also proud to announce Gear Up with Gear Experts® - A podcast dedicated to at-height, industry, and construction. Gear Up with Gear Experts® is available via your podcast listening platform of choice and in each episode, the hosts (Alex Giddings & John Medina) bring in a gear expert or industry leader to talk about gear, gear safety, tips, and tricks. To find out more about the show and sign up for alerts, head on over to gearexperts.com.

    Get Social


     

    Be sure to follow us on social media to keep up with everything GME Supply has going on.

    Facebook | Instagram | YouTube | Twitter | LinkedIn

    We’re Also on Snapchat


     

    Simply snap or screenshot this image ↓ to follow GME Supply!

  2. Product Spotlight: Tuf-Tug Cable Climb Systems

    Cable climb systems, also known as a ladder fall protection system, can streamline tower maintenance projects and provide additional job site safety. The basic function of a cable climb system is to have a ladder with a cable attached to it, pre-installed on a tower. You use a cable grab, attached to your sternal D-ring, to easily move up and down the ladder. In the event of a fall, the cable safety sleeve locks onto the cable and arrests the fall. Applications for cable climb systems include towers, billboards, commercial buildings, utility structures, solar, and wind. This week our Gear Experts® are going to break down Tuf-Tug cable climb systems.

    Approved


     

    As legacy cable climb systems on towers begin to reach the end of their useful life, and as structures that are updated are required to have cable climb systems installed, it can start to be difficult to know which systems are approved to be used on specific sites. Tuf-Tug Cable Climb Systems are approved for installation on major tower sites by their owners. This makes deciding which system to get a whole lot easier.

    What Systems?


     

    Tuf-Tug makes cable climb systems for all standard towers in most standard lengths. On top of that, they also feature all of the needed equipment for the system included with the system itself – say goodbye to having to buy extra parts!

    Tuf-Tug manufactures 3 systems. They are a monopole system, a fixed ladder system, and a round climbing leg system.

    What’s Included?


     

    All systems include A stainless steel (factory swaged) cable that is cut to the chosen length. The stainless steel finish provides additional protection against harsh weather conditions which extends the life of the system.

    Monopole

    The monopole system includes:

    • A cable head assembly with fasteners and impact attenuator;
    • Monopole cable guides;
    • A monopole base anchor bracket with a tension adjustment anchor bolt;
    • Cable clips; and
    • Cable fasteners.

    This system is available in 100’, 150’, 200’, and 250’ lengths.

    Fixed Ladder

    The fixed ladder system includes:

    • A heavy-duty upright mount bracket for solid rung ladders;
    • Ladder mount cable guides;
    • A head assembly with an impact attenuator;
    • Base anchor bracket assembly with tension adjustment;
    • Eye bolts; and
    • Cable clips;

    This system is available in 100’, 200’, 250’, 300’, and 400’ lengths.

    Round Climbing Leg

    The round climbing leg system includes:

    • A universal round leg head adapter bracket (which fits legs between 1.5 and 5 inches in diameter);
    • A round leg universal channel clamp (for up to 8 inches in diameter);
    • A head assembly with an impact attenuator;
    • Stud mount cable guides with fasteners;
    • A base anchor angle attachment bracket with tension adjustment eyebolt;
    • Thimble; and
    • Cable clamps.

    This system is available in 150’, 200’, 250’, and 300’ lengths.

    Further Customization


     

    If you need additional components or even a non-standard length, these cable climb systems can be completely customized to fit your requirements. For more information on customization, or for any other questions, click here to contact one of our Gear Experts®.

    Click here to see our full selection of Tuf-Tug Cable Climb Systems

    Click here to see our full selection of Tug-Tug Equipment

    **The content of this blog is not intended to replace proper, in-depth training. Manufacturer’s instructions must also be followed and reviewed before any fall protection equipment is used.

    Cable Climb Systems: The Playlist


     

    Gear Up with Gear Experts


     

    We're also proud to announce Gear Up with Gear Experts® - A podcast dedicated to at-height, industry, and construction. Gear Up with Gear Experts® is available via your podcast listening platform of choice and in each episode, the hosts (Alex Giddings & John Medina) bring in a gear expert or industry leader to talk about gear, gear safety, tips, and tricks. To find out more about the show and sign up for alerts, head on over to gearexperts.com.

    iTunes | Spotify | Google Play Music

     

    Get Social


     

    Be sure to follow us on social media to keep up with everything GME Supply has going on.

    Facebook | Instagram | YouTube | Twitter | LinkedIn

    We’re Also on Snapchat


     

    Simply snap or screenshot this image ↓ to follow GME Supply!

  3. 3Z RF Vision Antenna Aligner Application Guide

    The 3Z RF Vision Antenna Aligner is a revolutionary antenna alignment device that helps you easily and effectively install and maintain antennas. We’ve outlined many different features about this antenna aligner in previous blog posts. You can find a list of those blog posts here. This week our Gear Experts® are going to break down the free smartphone app available for download that works in conjunction with the RF Vision Antenna Aligner.

    There’s an App for That


     

    In 2019 there is literally an app for everything and the telecom profession is no different. The RF Vision Mobile App is available on both Android and iOS devices and allows you to control and monitor your RF Vision Alignment Tool with the mobile device that you already have in your pocket. So, let’s break down the app and some of the cool features it has.

    RF Vision Mobile App


     

    Design

    The app features a modern, streamlined design that is easy to navigate and helps you focus on performing the job. When you first open the app, you’ll notice that it looks pretty similar to the navigation menu on the actual device. That’s because you can do virtually anything you would do on the device touchscreen through your phone.

    Connecting the App

    When it comes to connecting the app to the device, 3Z has made it simple. The first step is to make sure that the software on your Antenna Aligner is up to date. Next, enable Bluetooth on both the aligner and your mobile device. Once Bluetooth has been enabled, open the RF Vision Mobile app and select your Antenna Alignment Tool in the menu. Once this process has been completed you should be taken back to the main screen where you can begin controlling your tool.

    Using the App

    Once the connection process has been completed you can navigate the menus just as would on the device itself. You can select the type of antenna you’re working with and entering all of the site information that is required is as easy as typing a text message. You can also see, in real-time, the line of sight target acquisition system as you align the antenna.

    But, the advantages of the mobile app don’t stop there. Easily report to the client that the job has been completed with the user-friendly ability to view, edit, delete, and download PDF reports (with the included line of sight images) straight to your mobile device. This feature makes sending your reports to your client as easy as sending an email from your phone.

    This app makes an already easy to use device even more convenient. If you have any questions about the 3Z RF Vision Antenna Alignment Tool or the RF Mobile App, click here to contact one of our Gear Experts®.

    *Users are required to register and download the latest firmware update from the 3Z website in order to use the mobile app. Click here to download that firmware.

    **The content of this blog is not intended to replace proper, in-depth training. Manufacturer’s instructions must also be followed and reviewed before any equipment is used.

    Click here to check out the 3Z RF Vision Antenna Alignment Tool

    Click here to see our selection of 3Z accessories

    3Z RF Vision Antenna Aligner App: The Video


     

    Gear Up with Gear Experts: The Podcast


     

    We're also proud to announce Gear Up with Gear Experts® - A podcast dedicated to at-height, industry, and construction. Gear Up with Gear Experts® is available via your podcast listening platform of choice and in each episode, the hosts (Alex Giddings & John Medina) bring in a gear expert or industry leader to talk about gear, gear safety, tips, and tricks. To find out more about the show and sign up for alerts, head on over to gearexperts.com.

    Get Social


     

    Be sure to follow us on social media to keep up with everything GME Supply has going on.

    Facebook | Instagram | YouTube | Twitter | LinkedIn

    We’re Also on Snapchat


     

    Simply snap or screenshot this image ↓ to follow GME Supply!

  4. First Aid 101

    While we all would like to live in a world where accidents don’t happen. Unfortunately, that is not the case. Being prepared for accidents can make all the difference in emergency situations. One important aspect of that preparedness is having a first aid kit on site and fully stocked. This week our Gear Experts® are going to break down ANSI requirements for first aid kits.

    ANSI Z308.1


     

    The ANSI Z308.1 standard sets the standard for minimum requirements for first aid kits and their contents. Each kit is classified by the assortment and quantity of first aid supplies to treat injuries and illnesses common to workplaces, such as major and minor wounds, minor burns, sprains and strains, and eye injuries. There are two kit classes and 4 classifications depending on the contents and size of the kit.

    ANSI Kit Classes


     

    The kit classes for an ANSI approved first aid kits are broken down into two classes: Class A and Class B.

    Class A

    Class A kits are designed to deal with the most common types of workplace injuries like minor cuts and scrapes, sprains, etc.

    Class B

    Class B kits, on the other hand, are designed with a more varied type and quantity of supplies. They are intended to deal with injuries in more complex or high-risk environments.

    Kit Classifications


     

    Kit classifications further break down kits based on portability, mounting options, resistance to water, and corrosion and impact resistance. These classes are expressed as Type 1, 2, 3, or 4.

    Type 1

    Type 1 kits are intended for use in stationary, indoor applications. They are not portable and should have means to be mounted in a fixed position.

    Type 2

    Type 2 kits are intended for portable, indoor applications. These should be equipped with a carrying handle.

    Type 3

    Type 3 kits are intended for portable use in mobile indoor and outdoor settings. They should have the ability to be mounted and contain a water-resistant seal.

    Type 4

    Type 4 kits are intended for portable use in mobile industries or outdoor applications where the potential for damage due to environmental factors and rough handling is present.

    Supplies


     

    The standard also specifies the minimum amount of supplies to be included with each kit as well as the minimum size or volume of the kit itself. Lastly, the standard specifies that the kits contain first aid supplies in uniform-sized color-coded boxes. Below we feature a chart that outlines these requirements.

    We'd also like to note that unfortunately, some materials in first aid kits do have expirations dates. So, it's important to routinely check your kits for expired materials and replace them as needed. We also recommend that you refill items that have been more than 60% depleted. This will help ensure that you always have the supplies you need when you need them.

    Build vs. Buy


     

    Now you’re probably wondering whether it is better to build your own kit or buy your kit. The answer is both. Building your own kit may be something that you want or feel you need to do. Not every job site is the same, so you may want a custom kit that has supplies in addition to the ones that come in standard kits. The important thing to remember is that you include everything required by the ANSI Z308.1 standard.

    If you don’t want to build your own kit, we’ve got a full selection of pre-built ANSI complaint kits. They come in every shape, size, and classification so you can be in compliance no matter what the job site situation is. You can still add further customization to these kits by adding additional job site specific items. The kit includes everything that is required with extra space for everything that you need.

    Free Poster


     

    We’ve made this blog post into a free downloadable poster available in our Knowledge Base. Click here to download the poster. And, if you have any questions about first aid or which kit you need on the job site, click here to contact one of our Gear Experts®.

    Click here to see our full selection of first aid kits

    **The content of this blog is not intended to replace proper, in-depth training. Manufacturer’s instructions must also be followed and reviewed before any PPE is used.

    First Aid: The Video


     

    Gear Up with Gear Experts: The Podcast


     

    We're also proud to announce Gear Up with Gear Experts® - A podcast dedicated to at-height, industry, and construction. Gear Up with Gear Experts® is available via your podcast listening platform of choice and in each episode, the hosts (Alex Giddings & John Medina) bring in a gear expert or industry leader to talk about gear, gear safety, tips, and tricks. To find out more about the show and sign up for alerts, head on over to gearexperts.com.

    iTunes | Spotify | Google Play Music

    Get Social


     

    Be sure to follow us on social media to keep up with everything GME Supply has going on.

    Facebook | Instagram | YouTube | Twitter | LinkedIn

    We’re Also on Snapchat


     

    Simply snap or screenshot this image ↓ to follow GME Supply!

  5. Tower Paint 101

    Why paint my tower? How do I know I’m compliant? These are some of the common questions we get about tower painting. At GME supply we know that knowledge is power, and this week our Gear Experts® are going to answer some of the most popular questions we receive about tower paint and markings.

    Why Paint Your Tower?


     

    The FAA has established recommendations for antenna tower painting and lighting in the Federal Code Advisory Circular 47 CFR Part 17. While these are just recommendations the FCC has been given the authority by Congress to make them requirements. According to these requirements, a tower must be lighted or painted if its height exceeds 200 feet or if it is deemed an aviation hazard in any way. For example, short towers that are near airports must be painted or lighted.

    Does Any Orange and White Paint Work?


     

    In short, No. Your paint must meet specific specifications outlined in the federal standard 595 for international aviation colors. The approved colors are Aviation Orange #12197 and Outside White #17875. Color is not the only thing that you need to be aware of, though. Tower paint has to be 100% acrylic exterior latex, formulated specifically for application on galvanized steel.

    Federal standard 595 for international aviation colors.

    Our TowerPlex Tower Paint is specifically designed for use on galvanized antenna towers and it meets federal standard for the correct white and aviation orange colors. These standards ensure consistency throughout the industry for proper color signaling and paint durability.

    Do I Need to Use a Primer?


     

    Using primer is not required, but it is recommended. Using the proper primer under your paint will help it achieve maximum bond to the steel. If you are planning on spraying your tower paint, a nice full coat of primer is highly recommended. If you are doing spot painting on an existing tower, maybe over some new cold galvanizing compound (cold galv) you will want to put some primer on before you put down the tower paint. Primer works, because the alkalinity in TowerPlex Primer bonds with the zinc layer of the galvanization.

    How do I Apply the Paint?


     

    Application can vary by brand, but with TowerPlex Tower Paint you can apply it between 50 and 110° Fahrenheit using a brush, mitt, or spray. Coverage can also vary by brand and situation, but TowerPlex is meant to cover 592 square feet per gallon at 1 mil dry. Ideally when painting a full wet coat is applied overlapping each pass 50% to avoid dusting. If a freeze or rain is possible in the next 24 hours we recommend postponing the painting. Dry time to re-coat typically takes between 4 and 18 hours depending on the outside temperature.

    How Do I Know If I’m Compliant?


     

    To find out if your paint is compliant you can use an FAA Color Chart.  With this chart, you will be able to match your tower to color swatches that meet FAA guidelines for aviation safe colors.

    If you have a question, or just need more information about tower paint, click here to connect with one of our Gear Experts®.

    **The content of this blog is not intended to replace proper, in-depth training. Manufacturer’s instructions must also be followed and reviewed before any equipment is used.

    Click here to check out our full selection of tower painting gear.

    Click here to check out our TowerPlex paint selection.

    Click here to check out our FAA Color Chart.

    Tower Paint 101 Video


     

    Gear Up with Gear Experts: The Podcast


     

    We're also proud to announce Gear Up with Gear Experts® - A podcast dedicated to at-height, industry, and construction. Gear Up with Gear Experts® is available via your podcast listening platform of choice and in each episode, the hosts (Alex Giddings & John Medina) bring in a gear expert or industry leader to talk about gear, gear safety, tips, and tricks. To find out more about the show and sign up for alerts, head on over to gearexperts.com.

    Get Social


     

    Be sure to follow us on social media to keep up with everything GME Supply has going on.

    Facebook | Instagram | YouTube | Twitter | LinkedIn

    We’re Also on Snapchat


     

    Simply snap or screenshot this image ↓ to follow GME Supply!

  6. Benefits of Using Two-Way Radios

    In the digital age where being connected to the world through cell phones is not only common but an integrated part of everyone’s life, most people don’t have two-way radios at top of mind. However, when it comes to industrial applications and working on the job site, radios can provide benefits that even modern cell phones can’t. This week our Gear Experts® are going to break down the benefits of using radios.

    One-to-Many and One-to-One


     

    Most people are aware of at least one part of this benefit: one-to-many. Being able to talk to an entire crew or facility with the touch of a single button is pretty nifty. It doesn’t require taking a device out of your pocket, unlocking it, and setting up a conference call as a cell phone would. Radio accessories make it easy to initiate conversation with a mic attached to your shoulder and you don’t have to do anything else to talk to everyone at once.

    Many-to-one is something that isn’t as well-known but solves a problem that some people have with radios. While most of the time when using radios, you will want to talk to everyone at once, sometimes there are situations that warrant one-to-one conversation. Radios can provide that, too. Modern radios, like the Kenwood PKT-23 ProTalk Pocket Sized Portable Radio, have the ability to take a conversation private between two parties.

    Signal Doesn’t Matter


     

    When working on a job site, having a cell phone signal isn’t always possible. A cell phone without a signal is just a personal computer without access to the internet. Radios, on the other hand, don’t need a connection apart from being within range of the person you are talking to. That means that no matter where the job takes you, a radio will keep your crew connected at all times.

    Weak cell phone signal may mean that the device works, but it doesn’t mean it works well. Trying to talk to your crew on a cell phone that is experiencing poor signal quality can be a real downer, add unnecessary stress to the job, and make situations more dangerous. When it comes to radios, as long as you are within range, the clarity of the radio will be perfect every time. And with new digital solutions like the Kenwood NX-240V16P ProTalk Digital 5 Watt VHF Portable Radio, your clarity will be better than ever.

    Durability & Cost


     

    New cell phones, smartphones, in particular, aren't exactly known for their durability. With big glass screens and thin plastic or aluminum bodies, a 3-foot drop can spell doom for a modern cell phone. How about a 10-foot drop?  Forget about it – that phone is toast. While there are cases, tetherable cell phone holders, and a range of other equipment to hold and protect your phone, it’s much easier to just not have to worry. Radios are built tough and with equipment that is IP54, IP55, and IP67 compliant like the NX-P500 2 Watt Radio from Kenwood, you can rest assured that your radio can handle the toughest job sites.

    Cost is possibly one of the biggest benefits. While a good quality radio isn’t exactly “cheap”, it is cheaper than most smartphones. That, coupled with the fact that no monthly payment is required and the durability factor means that your overall cost of purchasing and using a radio is significantly lower than purchasing and replacing cell phones.

    What Radio is the right Radio?


     

    So, you’ve decided you want all of the benefits provided by radios, but now you need to find the right radio for your situation. We’ve got a series of blog posts that can help you make the right choice when it comes to radios. Find out if you need a digital or analog radio in this blog post and in this blog post we talk all about radio accessories.

    If you’ve got more questions about radios or accessories, click here to contact one of our Gear Experts®.

    Click here to see our full selection of Kenwood equipment

    Click here to see our full selection of radios

    Radios: The Playlist


     

    Gear Up with Gear Experts: The Podcast


     

    We're also proud to announce Gear Up with Gear Experts® - A podcast dedicated to at-height, industry, and construction. Gear Up with Gear Experts® is available via your podcast listening platform of choice and in each episode, the hosts (Alex Giddings & John Medina) bring in a gear expert or industry leader to talk about gear, gear safety, tips, and tricks. To find out more about the show and sign up for alerts, head on over to gearexperts.com.

    Get Social


     

    Be sure to follow us on social media to keep up with everything GME Supply has going on.

    Facebook | Instagram | YouTube | Twitter | LinkedIn

    We’re Also on Snapchat


     

    Simply snap or screenshot this image ↓ to follow GME Supply!

  7. Tower Family Foundation + GME Supply

    Ask any GME Supply employee what makes our workplace different from traditional safety companies and you’ll hear: honesty, accountability, innovation, creativity, tenacity, integrity, urgency, charity, loyalty, and respect. These words are present at every desk and are featured on walls throughout our headquarters. We pride ourselves on using these traits and philosophies to not only improve ourselves but to improve the lives of everyone around us. This week our Gear Experts® are proud to announce our partnership with the Tower Family Foundation.

    The Tower Family Foundation


     

    We’d all like to live in a world where accidents don’t happen. And part of our mission here at GME Supply is to help provide accurate training and equipment to prevent as many accidents as possible. But sometimes accidents do happen and the hardships these accidents cause can go well beyond the job site.

    The Tower Family Foundation (Tower Industry Family Support Charitable Foundation) “was established to help provide assistance to the family members of a severely injured, permanently disabled, or deceased tower worker injured or killed in an accident stemming from working at heights on communication structures or other on the job-related activities that tower workers are involved in on a daily basis”. This organization is a 501c-3 non-profit foundation – meaning their mission is to help, not make a profit.

    GME Supply + Tower Family Foundation


     

    GME Supply and its employees are always looking for opportunities to help our communities. That’s why we are so excited to announce that we have officially teamed up with the Tower Family Foundation to help raise money to help the families of tower climbers across the country. All donations made to the Tower Family Foundation are used “to provide a funding “bridge” to the affected families to help pay for immediate needs and help defray other related costs that families experience in a post-accident or fatality situation”.

    As part of our efforts to help raise money, we are launching the brand-new GME Supply "Climb Higher" Tower Family Foundation Donation T-Shirt. All proceeds from this shirt will be donated directly to the Tower Family Foundation. Show off your tower climbing pride while simultaneously providing support to injured tower climbers and their families with this durable double-needle stitched shirt. You can find out more information about, and purchase the shirt, by clicking here.

    Providing Support by Standing Together: The Video


     

    Gear Up with Gear Experts: The Podcast


     

    We're also proud to announce Gear Up with Gear Experts® - A podcast dedicated to at-height, industry, and construction. Gear Up with Gear Experts® is available via your podcast listening platform of choice and in each episode, the hosts (Alex Giddings & John Medina) bring in a gear expert or industry leader to talk about gear, gear safety, tips, and tricks. To find out more about the show and sign up for alerts, head on over to gearexperts.com.

    Get Social


     

    Be sure to follow us on social media to keep up with everything GME Supply has going on.

    Facebook | Instagram | YouTube | Twitter | LinkedIn

    We’re Also on Snapchat


     

    Simply snap or screenshot this image ↓ to follow GME Supply!

  8. Shackles 101

    When it comes to lifting and rigging, knowing the hardware you are using is an important part of safety. A common piece of hardware used in lifting and rigging is a shackle. A shackle is a metal link, typically U-shaped, closed by a bolt or screw. Shackles are typically made from forged steel to provide very high tensile strength. Many US contractors have begun requiring domestically made shackles. This week our Gear Experts® are going to break down shackles.

    Domestic vs. Foreign


     

    It was mentioned above, but now it’s time to break it down further. Many US contractors have started requiring shackles that are made domestically. A domestic shackle is a shackle that has been made in the United States. They are often preferred to foreign made shackles due to better manufacturing and testing processes. Crosby, one of the most popular shackle manufacturers in the world, has a full selection of domestically manufactured shackles to meet your needs no matter what the job site requires.

    Screw Pin vs. Bolt Shackles


     

    Each job is unique and that means requirements are different. Not to mention, contractors may have preferences in addition to requiring domestic shackles. Apart from common things like U-shape size and capacity, the main difference between shackles will be whether they are a screw pin or a bolt shackle.

    Screw Pin

    A screw pin shackle is pretty self-explanatory. It is a type of shackle where the pin has a male threaded end, which tightens into the female threads in the body of the shackle. These shackles are popular because of their ease of use and are most commonly used on jobs that don’t require heavy duty attachment.

    Bolt

    A bolt shackle is pretty self-explanatory as well. It is a type of shackle where the pin has a male threaded end which is fed through the body of the shackle and secured with a bolt on the outside of the shackle. These shackles aren’t as easy to use as the screw pin shackles because of the requirements of securing the bolt to the pin. However, bolt type shackles are typically a better solution for jobs that require heavy duty attachment.

    Standards: ASME B30


     

    When it comes to lifting and rigging, which happens to include shackles – if you’re using them in a lifting and rigging capacity, the ASME B30 Standard is something that you need to be mindful of. The ASME B30 standard focuses on setting the standards for materials, rated loads, identification, inspection, repair, and removal. ASME B30 covers blocks and a range of other hardware used for lifting and rigging. We covered ASME B30 and provided a full breakdown of the standard in a previous blog post. You can find that post here.

    If you’ve got questions about shackles, standards, or domestic manufacturers, click here to contact one of our Gear Experts®.

    Click here to see our full selection of shackles

    Click here to see our full selection of Crosby hardware

    Click here to see our full selection of lifting and rigging equipment

    **The content of this blog is not intended to replace proper, in-depth training. Manufacturer’s instructions must also be followed and reviewed before any Fall Protection Equipment is used.

    Shackles 101: The Video


     

    Gear Up with Gear Experts: The Podcast


     

    We're also proud to announce Gear Up with Gear Experts® - A podcast dedicated to at-height, industry, and construction. Gear Up with Gear Experts® is available via your podcast listening platform of choice and in each episode, the hosts (Alex Giddings & John Medina) bring in a gear expert or industry leader to talk about gear, gear safety, tips, and tricks. To find out more about the show and sign up for alerts, head on over to gearexperts.com.

     

    Get Social


     

    Be sure to follow us on social media to keep up with everything GME Supply has going on.

    Facebook | Instagram | YouTube | Twitter | LinkedIn

    We’re Also on Snapchat


     

    Simply snap or screenshot this image ↓ to follow GME Supply!

  9. Harness Inspection 101

    Whether you are in telecom, wind, solar, or tree care, construction, or any other at-height industry, the harness you wear is one of the most important pieces of equipment in your arsenal. Your harness is the apex of all your equipment. It is where everything converges, and where the perfect harmony of fall protection meets to ensure your safety on the job site. This week, our Gear Experts® are going to discuss how to properly inspect a harness.

    Harness Inspection


     

    There’s an old saying that states that a chain is only as strong as its weakest link. That saying goes far beyond chains – and in the context of this blog post, it is also true for fall protection. As we said in the opening of this post, your harness is an integral part of your fall protection setup. But no harness will last forever, and sometimes unforeseen events can cause the harness to need to be replaced. That’s where harness inspection comes in.

    Harness inspection is a pretty simple concept – it is the act of reviewing your harness before climbing to ensure that the harness will remain functioning both while you climb and in the event of a fall. The actual act of inspecting the harness can have some mild variance depending on the construction of the harness. The main things to consider are what type of buckle system (pass through, tongue buckle, or quick connect) the harness has and whether it has a waist belt or not.

    Before you start your inspection, we highly recommend having a harness inspection form. A harness inspection form will help you keep records of when you inspected the harness as well as information like the serial number, date of first use, who inspected it, and any other notes about the inspection. We have a free downloadable harness inspection for in our Knowledge Base. Click here for your free copy of the form.

    What to Inspect


     

    Once you start the inspection, what exactly should you inspect?

    Labels & Markings

    The first thing to inspect is the labels and markings. Are all the labels intact? Do you have all the appropriate ANSI, OSHA, & CSA markings required? What is the date of first use? Has an impact indicator (sign of deployment) been triggered?

    Hardware

    Next, we want to start looking at the harness hardware. What condition are the shoulder adjustment buckles in? What about the leg and waist buckles? What about the other hardware the harness features? The D-rings should be closely inspected as well (the dorsal, side, shoulder, and/or sternal). Lastly, is any of the hardware corroded, pitting, or nicked?

    Webbing & Stitching

    The final piece of the puzzle is to inspect the webbing and stitching. What condition are the shoulder, chest, leg, and back straps in? Does the harness have any cuts, burns, or holes? Is there any paint contamination? What about excessive wear, heat corrosion, or UV damage? How is the stitching and is it affected by any of the above checks?

    Retiring a Harness


     

    The purpose of inspecting a harness is to make sure that the harness can handle the job it was meant to do. If the harness fails inspection that means it is not in compliance with ANSI requirements and should be retired and replaced immediately.

    If you’ve got questions about harness inspection, or if your harness has failed inspection and you’re looking for something new, click here to contact one of our Gear Experts®.

    Click here to download your free harness inspection form from our Knowledge Base

    Click here to access our full selection of inspection forms

    Click here to see our full selection of fall protection harnesses

    **The content of this blog is not intended to replace proper, in-depth training. Manufacturer’s instructions must also be followed and reviewed before any Fall Protection Equipment is used.

    Fall Protection Harnesses: The Playlist


     

    Gear Up with Gear Experts: The Podcast


     

    We're also proud to announce Gear Up with Gear Experts® - A podcast dedicated to at-height, industry, and construction. Gear Up with Gear Experts® is available via your podcast listening platform of choice and in each episode, the hosts (Alex Giddings & John Medina) bring in a gear expert or industry leader to talk about gear, gear safety, tips, and tricks. To find out more about the show and sign up for alerts, head on over to gearexperts.com.

    Get Social


     

    Be sure to follow us on social media to keep up with everything GME Supply has going on.

    Facebook | Instagram | YouTube | Twitter | LinkedIn

    We’re Also on Snapchat


     

    Simply snap or screenshot this image ↓ to follow GME Supply!

  10. Product Spotlight: KASK Super Plasma HD Safety Helmet

    Head injuries are no joke. A head injury can cause brain damage, trauma, or even death. We know that protecting your noggin is an important part of job site safety. Not only is it important, but it’s required by law. OSHA states that a safety helmet must be worn “when working in areas where there is potential for injury to the head from falling objects”. While a safety helmet is required, not every helmet is the same. This week our Gear Experts® are going to break down the KASK Super Plasma HD Safety Helmet.

    Features


     

    This helmet is jam-packed with cool features. It features ten air intakes to help keep you cool. These air intakes have an anti-intrusion grille that prevents dirt and debris from getting into the helmet. It also features premium lamp clips that are made of strong nylon and are compatible with any headlamp that has an elastic band. Storing the helmet is easy, too. The ring to hook special loop on the chin strap allows the helmet to easily connect to your harness.

    It also has visor attachments so that you can connect your favorite KASK Visor to your helmet. KASK doesn’t stop there, though. They’ve also included an integrated slot for earmuffs with a bayonet attachment. It also includes KASK’s “Up & Down System” which ensures a precise and comfortable fit around the neck. The center wheel and two side flaps allow for quick adjustment in both width and height.

    Construction


     

    The bells and whistles of this helmet weren’t only reserved for the sweet features. The construction is impressive, too. The outer shell is constructed of ABS plastic while the inner shell is made of HD Polystyrene. The soft PA Nylon provides ultimate comfort during your daily use and the universal size means this helmet can be adjusted from 20 to 24 3/8 inches (that’s 51 to 62 cm for our metric friends).

    Style & Standards


     

    This helmet has a style that more closely resembles a bike helmet rather than a traditional hard hat. But that doesn’t make it any less safe. What really matters when looking at a safety helmet is that it meets the standards (Type & Class) that are required for the work you are doing. Type covers impact and class covers electrical ratings. For more detailed information about standards, best practices, and service life, check out our Safety Helmets 101 blog post and our free Safety Helmets 101 downloadable poster.

    Now that we’ve established that there are specific standards, and you’ve had a chance to check out what those standards entail (if you didn’t already know, of course). Let’s break down the standards for this helmet. It meets ANSI Z89.1-2014 and CSA Z94.1-2015 which means the standards for this helmet have been established. Those standards are Type 1, Class C.

    If you’ve got more questions on the KASK Super Plasma HD Safety Helmet or if you’re looking for more information about safety helmets in general, click here to contact one of our Gear Experts®.

    Click here to see the KASK Super Plasma HD Safety Helmet

    Click here to see our full selection of KASK gear

    Click here to see all of our blog posts about safety helmets/hard hats

    Click here to download a free copy of our Safety Helmets 101 downloadable poster straight from our Knowledge Base

    **The content of this blog is not intended to replace proper, in-depth training. Manufacturer’s instructions must also be followed and reviewed before any PPE is used.

    Safety Helmets: The Playlist


    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KGqmxdXiNrQ&list=PLZQI6zuBv9QM4a2K-mTIvp2MefUCl5WiQ

    Gear Up with Gear Experts: The Podcast


     

    We're also proud to announce Gear Up with Gear Experts® - A podcast dedicated to at-height, industry, and construction. Gear Up with Gear Experts® is available via your podcast listening platform of choice and in each episode, the hosts (Alex Giddings & John Medina) bring in a gear expert or industry leader to talk about gear, gear safety, tips, and tricks. To find out more about the show and sign up for alerts, head on over to gearexperts.com.

    iTunes | Spotify | Google Play Music

     

    Get Social


     

    Be sure to follow us on social media to keep up with everything GME Supply has going on.

    Facebook | Instagram | YouTube | Twitter | LinkedIn

    We’re Also on Snapchat


    Simply snap or screenshot this image ↓ to follow GME Supply!

Items 1 to 10 of 183 total