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Rigging System for Loudspeakers (M3D QuickFly)

US Patent: 6,640,924
Date Filed: February 20, 2002
Date Issued: November 4, 2003
Inventors: Ian Strachan Messner
The QuickFly rigging system created for the M3D line array loudspeaker, M3D-Sub directional subwoofer, M2D compact curvilinear array loudspeaker and M2D-Sub compact subwoofer was a breakthrough in rigging hardware for several reasons. First, the ingenious CamLink system allows splay angles to be changed simply by adjusting the front of the cabinet; it was not necessary to release the array or deal with the assortment of parts required in other rigging systems to get the required selection of angles.

Second, the rigid design meant that, for most applications, a pull-back cable was unnecessary. Third, a small stack of cabinets could be transported with the rigging and angles intact, thus eliminating piece-by-piece assembly onstage and making it faster to fly an array or add extra cabinets. QuickFly was introduced with the M3D, and that is the system to which this patent applies. Subsequent improvements in the QuickFly system are the subject of other patents.

The key to the system is that the top rear of the rigging frame on each loudspeaker cabinet could receive a pivoting link, while the bottom front corner held a cam link that also pivoted. The CamLink had holes drilled at precise intervals to allow splay angles to be set in one-degree increments. With this system, a stack of cabinets could be wheeled off the truck on a caster frame, then the top grid hooked to the hoist motors and the cabinets hoisted a few feet off of the stage. If a splay angle needed to be changed, a person standing on each side could remove the quick-lock pin on each front corner, ease the cabinet under it down to the desired angle, and reinsert the pins. Gravity does most of the work.

The idea of captive links, later realized in QuickFly rigging for the MICA compact high-power loudspeaker, is introduced as being within the scope of this patent, although a separate patent was applied for later.