by Frederike Berg
Advantages of steel scaffold decks
Since industrialisation and the widespread use of steel, it is hard to imagine construction sites without steel scaffolding. Yet it is not so long ago that wooden scaffolding was the number one type of scaffolding on the market. With the wooden plank, at least a small part of the legacy of wooden scaffolding has been transferred to modern scaffolding. But even here, depending on the application, steel scaffold decks can provide real competition for wood. Here is a brief summary of the advantages of steel decks.
Steel scaffold decks – the most durable option on the market
Admittedly, steel decks are heavier than their wooden counterparts. On the other hand, depending on their dimensions, steel planks have a higher load-bearing capacity. So, if you are planning to carry out heavy duty work such as bricklaying and masonry, or industrial maintenance with heavy machinery, the extra weight of the steel decks may well pay off.
Steel decks are usually made from high strength low alloy steel (HSLA) or galvanised steel. Galvanised steel decks in particular are very corrosion resistant as they are coated with a layer of zinc during the galvanising process. Click here to read our blog post on the galvanising process for scaffolding material.
Both the material steel and the corrosion protection processes make high quality steel decks particularly durable. This applies not only to their resistance to extreme weather conditions and moisture, but also to their fire resistance. Steel can also withstand high temperatures, making it ideal for work involving heat. For example, steel and structural work on bridges and buildings where beams and columns need to be welded and cut. In plants where there is an increased risk of fire, such as chemical plants, steel decks are often mandatory.
To minimise the risk of slipping on the scaffold, many steel planks have a perforated surface. Alternatively, non-slip mats or coatings can be installed to increase safety when working on the scaffold. Anti-lift devices also provide a safe connection between the decks and the scaffold.
Advantages of steel decks at a glance
Here is a brief summary of some of the advantages of using scaffold steel decks:
- Durable: steel decks are suitable for long term use as they are highly durable and resistant to damage
- Load-bearing: steel has a high load-bearing capacity and even heavy duty works can be carried out with steel decks
- Weather-resistant: high-quality steel decks are resistant to moisture and extreme weather conditions
- Fire-resistant: steel is non-combustible and provides better fire protection
Still not sure which material to use for your scaffold decks? Click here to read our blog article about wooden scaffold planks.
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