An SME adopts an exoskeleton of the construction site for its stucateurs

INNOVATION. The fight against the hardness achieved through the adoption of new methods and technologies, even in old trades. The company SOE Stuc & Staff participated in the development of an exoskeleton mechanism which relieves the arms of his companions on the construction site. Discovery of this solution with Bruno Rondet, its chief executive officer.
Reduce the painfulness of the building trades, such is the stake of the different technologies that are emerging today. Bruno Rondet, president and ceo of SOE Stuc & Staff, has therefore decided to develop an exoskeleton that would help its workers in their task the more difficult : sanding detailed ceilings. He tells us : “How to practice one of the most beautiful trades of the second work, stucateur, when we hurt ?“. Against this backdrop, the business manager initiates a discussion with the committee of hygiene, safety and working conditions (CHSCT) of his entity to identify solutions that would also ease the burden of the companions forced to wear, at the end of arm, heavy sanders.


This is the worst stress of the job. The workers do a few minutes, each in turn, to rest their arms. However, the accuracy must be perfect so that the finish is satisfactory, “says the ceo. “Where the idea of a system of goat in roulette that would be the tool or ‘giraffe’ to extension to working from the ground“. SOE Stuc & Staff is therefore in search of technical solutions that meet its needs and test different machines. “The one designed by Flex for the pickling was not specific enough and did the rings and marks on the ceilings. We then tried it with a system of articulated arm attached to a harness in the way of the cameramen. But this time, there was a couple at the end of the telescopic arm which made the sander out of control…”. The professionals understand the need of guiding the tool to the hand.


Trial of exoskeleton-type cameraman © SOE Stuc & Staff


Several months of trial and error before finding
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The company Exhauss, specializing in the exoskeletons, then offers one of his standard models, intended to carry load, and derive a specialized machine for stucateurs. “In the first version the wrist of the operator were connected to the machine. It was inconvenient and sometimes painful, even dangerous in case of fall of the scaffold, due to the impossibility to catch up easily…”. After several months of trials and changes, the final model finally appears : the metal frame, of a dozen pounds, donned as a harness. It is articulated by “tendons” made of rubber-elastic support arms to the height of the triceps, leaving the forearms and hands are free to guide the sander. “We tested it on the workers most resistant to change, those who were most attached to tradition, “says the ceo of SOE Stuc & Staff. “And the results were immediate : they could sand it without a break for 40 minutes straight. Never seen before ! With a 100% satisfaction one could say that the bet was won“, argues Bruno Rondet who believes that it would now be unthinkable to do otherwise.

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