Greenbelt in 2012

A photo blog about Greenbelt, Maryland in its 75th anniversary year

How To Set Up A Ferris Wheel

with 2 comments

August 28

On Tuesday, I watched a crew of seven workers from Rosedale Attractions setting up a Ferris Wheel by the Greenbelt Community Center.

The truck rolls into the Community Center’s east parking lot at 7:18 p.m.

Tools and wood blocks are taken out of the truck.

The first step is to jack up the truck which contains the Ferris wheel and use wood blocks to support it. A level tool is consulted several times.

A worker detaches a metal bar (here vertical) which holds the spokes (horizontal) of the wheel together.

This round piece is at the center of the Ferris wheel.

The main pole of the Ferris wheel rises.

Bolts are inserted into the central pole.

A worker climbs up the main pole carrying a pulley system on his belt.

The pulley system is used to pull the support beams up.

An hour into the work, after the support beams are in place, it is time to open up the wheel. The spokes of the wheel are pulled apart using an electric motor.

Workers attach metal bars to the end of the adjacent spokes to form the outer rim of the wheel.

The metal bar is attached to the adjacent spoke as the wheel swings up.

The partially formed Ferris wheel

The outer rim bars are added one by one to complete the wheel.

A light is put on.

Next, to reinforce the wheel, additional metal bars are added.

Screws are put in.

When it comes down to the last few bars, it can be tight. Here two workers use their weight to free up some room.

Freeing up some room for the last two reinforcing bars

Thus the frame of the Ferris wheel, with its outer rim and support beams, took another hour to finish. Now what is left are the seats. Here a seat is attached to the wheel frame using metal bars and screws.

The roof is put on over the seat.

There are 16 seats and each has to be assembled this way.

Putting screws in

It took about 45 minutes to install 16 seats. The steps after that are a lot easier. Here workers put fences on.

This board goes over a tire and completes the mural.

A skirt hides the underside of the truck.

Flags for Rosedale Attractions are plugged in.

Then more lights are plugged in.

Bolts have to be tightened.

Finally, at 10:25 p.m., three hours after the crew of seven started their job, the Ferris wheel is ready. Note the lit outer rim and the support bars that form an unlit, inner circle.

Expo Trolly

The Ferris wheel is reflected in a Community Center window.

The carnival midway, including this Ferris/Expo Wheel, will open on Friday at 6 p.m.

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Written by eric

August 30, 2012 at 8:00 am

Posted in Annual, Festival

Tagged with , ,

2 Responses

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  1. Wow! What fun – but clearly hard work for them. New appreciation of the Ferris Wheel.

    Kathie Jarva

    August 30, 2012 at 8:42 am

  2. Great photo essay! Thanks!

    Cindy Perry

    September 3, 2012 at 7:22 pm


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