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NYC


NYC

NYC
Location: NYC, NY, USA

Total posts: 9232
Posted:Hear me out.

There's a fire thing going on in November on the roof of a factory. It's actually a really thick, fireproof concrete roof. The guy who owns it was bragging about it actually. So it's ideal.

BUT, I kind of wanted to build a LITTLE stage out of plywood (So a 4 foot by 8 foot piece of plywood elevated a whopping 4 inches) that would kind of look like this...


Non-Https Image Link


Do you think I'd have a problem spinning poi on plywood?

Now I know that some will yell "Wood Burns! Fire and Wood are enemies!" but those that are in the know know that's not exactly how it works.

I think the wood would actually absorb most of the lamp oil spray (since it's not treated) and we could just flip it over half way through the night to give us a new surface. Considering last year we spun on PLASTIC this has got to be an upgrade.

I'd just like to make it SOMETHING a bit more special than just spinning in the middle of a crowd. And I'd also like to have it contained to one area.

Anyone have any real insight? Anyone actually spun on plywood before?

Thanks biggrin


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MikeIcon
GOLD Member since Mar 2003

MikeIcon

Pooh-Bah
Location: Philadelphia, PA - USA

Total posts: 2109
Posted:You talking about Decom?

Anyway, I doubt there will be any problems with spinning on plywood. The only problem you might see is that if everyone is using lamp oil, the stage may become slippery quickly. Id suggest that everyone use white gas to solve the problem. As for the stage burning... It wont happen. You could probably pour a puddle of white gas in the center of it and it still wouldnt burn after the fuel is gone. Contrary to popular belief, wood is pretty resiliant to fire.


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and torch the rough patches.

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MikeIcon
GOLD Member since Mar 2003

MikeIcon

Pooh-Bah
Location: Philadelphia, PA - USA

Total posts: 2109
Posted:Oh, and if it is for Decom, Id also suggest forgetting the stage. I like having room to move around and I may feel restricted on a stage that small. Think more about constructive ways to mark off a spinning space and how to set a nice backdrop for it.

Let's turn those old bridges we crossed into ashes.
We'll blaze a new trail,
and torch the rough patches.

-Me

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Seb


Seb

Penguin of Mass Destruction and Tricky Bugger to the court of Claire the Askew
Location: Check behind you.

Total posts: 642
Posted:Written by: ICoN

Contrary to popular belief, wood is pretty resiliant to fire.



It is? How the flying ferretmonkeys does that work out?


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Property of mynci and blu_valley, and proud of it.

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MikeIcon
GOLD Member since Mar 2003

MikeIcon

Pooh-Bah
Location: Philadelphia, PA - USA

Total posts: 2109
Posted:Ever try to start a log with a lighter? How about putting your kindling on top of a bunch of sticks? Those methods dont work too well do they? Its just a matter of flame size, temperature, duration and position.



Sure, if you threw some plywood into a fire pit it would burn rather quickly... But considering we're only talking about small amounts of fast burning fuel AND that the fire will be on TOP of the wood (heat rising and all) chances are slim that it will catch. Shoot, I put flaming fuel on my SKIN.


Let's turn those old bridges we crossed into ashes.
We'll blaze a new trail,
and torch the rough patches.

-Me

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Mand
SILVER Member since Oct 2003

Mand

Keeper of the Spitfire
Location: Calgary Canada

Total posts: 2317
Posted:I've spun on a plywood stage a couple of times. It was perfectly fine (despite being slightly wobbly!).

I think, as ICoN pointed out, the only problem you'd have is it getting slippy if you're using lamp oil. The stage we used for a show quickly became a slick surface- kinda similar to that really slippy green slime you get on rocks. frown
Personally I didn't like it much- I was very aware of where the edges were, and how slippy the surface was, which resulted in me not moving very much. Every time I took a step or turned, I'd have to check my footing before putting all my weight on it.

But as for the stage burning... unless you're planning on having a fire sitting *on* the wood on the stage, you shouldn't have a problem.


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Gnor
BRONZE Member since Mar 2003

Gnor

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: Perth

Total posts: 5814
Posted:Could it be painted with a non slip paint thats quite"abrasive" and rough so it gives plenty of grip. Piant it in a pattern and its a feature as you flip it or look at it. I dont know about your fuels. Can you try putting some feul on a small piece of plywood and then lit staff/poi ( like a drop) on top to see what happens, giving it worst case scenario. Not that anyone would lose a poi plate or staff in a performance. redface

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Skulduggery
GOLD Member since Aug 2004

Skulduggery

Pirate Pixie Crew Captain
Location: Wales

Total posts: 8428
Posted:Build it with a lip around the edge and half fill it with sand. That should be less slippy and would adsorb any fuel. Then if you want to change it half way through sweep out the sand into a bucket and put in new.

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spritie
SILVER Member since Sep 2001

spritie

Pooh-Bah
Location: Galveston, TX

Total posts: 2014
Posted:I've spun on a plywood stage on plenty occassions. Using lamp oil on it does make it VERY slipperly very quickly, so we always forbid people to do so...white gas only. I've never had a problem with the stage actually burning. Depending on the size you opt to use (it should be 6 x 6 minimum), you might want to put supports under the middle so that you don't get sagging and the plywood can sustain the momentum/danciness of the spinner. The larger the stage is, the more flexibility the spinner has and the less of a threat of falling off the edge they will have. Also, if you have any staff spinners that you think might want to use the stage, I suggest making it larger than you would for just a fire spinner. It has been my experience that staff people on a stage like a tad more room.

So, I say go for it as long as you make it a decent size.

We've also made 4 4x8 free standing stages that can be moved together to form one larger one. This makes the sagging problem in the middle disappear, so that is a thought as well.


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NYC


NYC

NYC
Location: NYC, NY, USA

Total posts: 9232
Posted:Hrmm... wow... lots of food for thought.

I think I'd prefer to go AWAY from whitegas. It was really annoying last year to constantly be biting my nails while diving on people to put them out. Since these aren't always people I trust, I'm contemplating banning whitegas completely for poi and staff. We've got a big enough space to keep moving around so we could easily move if one area got too slippery.

And yes Icon, it's for Decom.

Maybe if I just threw down some 2x4s to mark off the area (and maybe put torches on the 2x4s or something). It's really important that we separate the performance area from the spectators.

OK, I've got a huge concrete roof, 2000 people (on the roof and other places), and 20 firespinners that will be spinning periodically through the night at regular intervals... give me some ideas.

My concerns:
1) Separating the audience with a clear boundary.
2) Whitegas spills. (Y'all know I hate whitegas and I see NO reason for it if we're outside on a huge roof where we can keep moving all night.)
3) Making it look nice... or niceish.
4) My girlie will be in town so I don't want to take much time putting together something. ubblove

ICoN, you want to show up early and help? biggrin


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Sethis
BRONZE Member since Mar 2017

Sethis

Pooh-Bah
Location: York University

Total posts: 1762
Posted:How about if you make the stage, then cover it in a layer of chicken wire/wire mesh? That should provide traction, and let you use paraffin (lamp oil). Just a thought. smile

After much consideration, I find that the view is worth the asphyxiation.
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NYC


NYC

NYC
Location: NYC, NY, USA

Total posts: 9232
Posted:Not sure that that'd be better or worse. I could see oil on metal being a worse situation and way easier to trip over.

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Lurch
BRONZE Member since Nov 2003

Lurch

old hand
Location: Oregon

Total posts: 929
Posted:I've spun on a moving wooden dock section... so spinning on a plywood stage should be just fine. You could always just go buy some paint, throw some sand in it and paint the wood if you want to add some grip.

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spritie
SILVER Member since Sep 2001

spritie

Pooh-Bah
Location: Galveston, TX

Total posts: 2014
Posted:Lurch, I've done exactly what you suggested (well, sorta we used some premixed paint with grit in it). It does help somewhat, but we found that it didn't help at all when using lamp oil on the stage. At least with the raw wood, the lamp oil to soak into the wood just a smidge, but with the painted surface, that didn't happen at it. Painting the wood with gritted paint actually didn't improve the slippery factor at all versus just plain painted wood.

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MikeIcon
GOLD Member since Mar 2003

MikeIcon

Pooh-Bah
Location: Philadelphia, PA - USA

Total posts: 2109
Posted:NYC,



White gas isnt as bad as it looks. I too had a distaste for it but Ive recently gotten over it. After seeing all the blatantly unsafe practices with it at Burning Man (since it seems NO ONE uses lamp oil there) I dont feel its so bad anymore.



In this situation, I feel that lamp oil would be much less safe than white gas. The stage/spinning area WILL get slippery VERY quickly. Ive spun on oil coated surfaces before and its not fun. Also, considering we're gonna be on a ROOF, slippery surfaces are definately not a good thing.



I still say to go with white gas here. Accidents can be avoided rather easily... First off, make sure everyone SPINS OFF THEIR WICKS well before lighting up. That will dramatically decrease the flaming fuel being sprayed into the crowd and be less likely to catch clothing on fire if someone hits themselves. Second, make sure everyone is wearing appropriate clothing if they're gonna spin. Synthetics are ok for the most part but the things you want to avoid are meshy stuff and fur.



If you enforce those two simple rules when running the event you can allow the white gas and relax a bit



PS - I might be able to come early to help but cant say for certain. Ill let you know when it gets closer to the event.


Let's turn those old bridges we crossed into ashes.
We'll blaze a new trail,
and torch the rough patches.

-Me

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bender
GOLD Member since Nov 2001

still can't believe it's not butter
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Total posts: 6979
Posted:focusing on the wall plane helps avoid spraying a slick of fuel on the stage backdrop. it's really noticeable by anal venue staff, even if you spin off the excess fuel vigoursouly before hand - must be becuase i prefer larger wicks, or perhaps the performances are too long.

slippery surfaces are a good oppotunity to twirl slowly, gracefully, with a low centre of gravity.
wood won't burn if you don't drop the poi, and you'll have better reaction times if you twirl slowly.

ps hello NYC!! :waves:


Laugh Often, Smile Much, Post lolcats Always

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Lurch
BRONZE Member since Nov 2003

Lurch

old hand
Location: Oregon

Total posts: 929
Posted:Well I've done kero, white gas and steel wool on that dock section, so if it can be done on a moving tipsy dock than i'd say you should be fine on plywood on the roof. I can see where painting it would be bad since it would take away any absorbancy that the plywood might have. I would say for the most part slip wise its going to come down to how well you spin off, or the ability to keep fuel off the surface, and what sort of footwear the spinners will be wearing, bad shoes on anything and you'll get slippery.


You might want to practice spinning on a sheet of plywood though.. for people who move around a bit it could be extremely limiting.


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Dr_Molly


Dr_Molly

Pooh-Bah
Location: Away from home

Total posts: 2354
Posted:Written by: ICoN


I still say to go with white gas here. Accidents can be avoided rather easily... First off, make sure everyone SPINS OFF THEIR WICKS well before lighting up. That will dramatically decrease the flaming fuel being sprayed into the crowd and be less likely to catch clothing on fire if someone hits themselves. Second, make sure everyone is wearing appropriate clothing if they're gonna spin. Synthetics are ok for the most part but the things you want to avoid are meshy stuff and fur.




Um, could we not go for the not having any flaming fuel spraying anywhere option do you think?

and after seeing how much people set themselves on fire using whitegas at spring PDF I'd have to disagree with the synthetics are ok bit too. They are Melty!


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marco


enthusiast
Location: uk

Total posts: 328
Posted:
During May, a small group (Samos University Juggling Soc) and myself spent a week organising and putting on performances to over 2000 people a night on a large professionally constructed stage, lighting gantries / rigs, sound desks PA etc, as part of the Agean Cultural week.

The stage in question had sheets of uncoated plywood as the surface, main fuels in use were Kero (unrefined) and lamp oil, some white gas for specialist applications, (not a great fan of white gas). Although I use white gas for some indoor performances, with good ventilaton and fuel ejection protocols there really isnt any need.

We found that a good solid plywood flooring was much less of a problem than other surfaces that you might encounter, being uncoated any 'residuel' fuel tends to soak into the substrate, that said having a plywood base with obsorbed fuel represents a potential fire hazard. Either way you will want to have in place good a fuel ejection protocol, this will substantially reduce the amount of ejected fuel(s), there really isn't an excuse to be spraying fuel from props into the performance / audience area.

mark


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MiG
GOLD Member since Apr 2004

MiG

Self-Flagellation Expert
Location: Bogged at CG

Total posts: 3415
Posted:a good one for that is dip and let sit on a towel or something for a while after spinning off, just helps make sure that theres hardly anything left to drip out of the wicks. Sure, they might not last as long, but i'd rather have short spins than burnt people...



And spinning off into a bucket or something is good too.



*thinks of making a supersized metal salad spinner for wicks*



*edit for something i just thought of and didn't deem writing a new post for*



What about finding some decrepit old cotton/wool rugs or carpet or something to drape over the stage? a few decent nails'll stop too much carpet slippage, and the fuel should soak nicely into the carpet leaving it not too slippery.

EDITED_BY: MiG (1130500493)


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NYC


NYC

NYC
Location: NYC, NY, USA

Total posts: 9232
Posted:Yeah, ICoN... the problem is not with the responsible folk.



I wrote a longer response but I think I'd just rather tell you in person.



If it was you, me and Molly, I'd have no problem with whitegas. But it's not.


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MikeIcon
GOLD Member since Mar 2003

MikeIcon

Pooh-Bah
Location: Philadelphia, PA - USA

Total posts: 2109
Posted:I understand your problems and STILL say white gas but Im not gonna argue... Ill just sue you when I slip on some lamp oil and break my neck smile

Im still in favor of no stage anyway.


Let's turn those old bridges we crossed into ashes.
We'll blaze a new trail,
and torch the rough patches.

-Me

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NYC


NYC

NYC
Location: NYC, NY, USA

Total posts: 9232
Posted:That's it, you're banned.

Well, shall we go?
Yes, let's go.
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