UK Loco rely on ERIKS for major, one-off live show

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ERIKS has delivered Fenner geared drive and inverters for stage props used in a globally televised, one-night-only live stage event in 2012. The commission came from UK Loco based in Worcestershire, a team of expert engineers with a worldwide reputation for providing purpose-built attractions for the theme park and leisure industry, as well as stage sets.

UK Loco had entered its company details into a procurement process to see if it would be eligible to provide engineering components for stage props in what was to be a unique and prestigious live stage show. When the company had satisfied the requirements of the application process, it was asked to quote for supplies and it was at this point that UK Loco asked Satish Chandarana, Technical Support Manager for Drives & Power Transmissions at ERIKS, to tender for the components within the project.

Alec McAndrew, Chief Operating Officer, UK Loco, explained why he called on ERIKS: “We have a very good relationship with ERIKS and we knew that, despite the fact that the job was confidential – meaning we would have to ask ERIKS to specify equipment without being able to tell them exactly what it was for – that they would give us what we needed. Technically speaking, ERIKS are extremely good at interpreting our needs.”

The show that UK Loco was working on was nothing less than a brief history of Great Britain and, in particular, a scene designed to represent the industrial revolution. As a Fenner Authorised Distributor, this was an apt subject for ERIKS, since Fenner was established at the climax of the industrial revolution during the mid-19th century and, indeed, it was ultimately Fenner products that were selected by UK Loco. The props in question were two giant looms, with three geared drives and inverters required for each machine.

Alec McAndrew explains: “As the design moved forward, we verified the spec with ERIKS who were able to calculate whether what they initially estimated would do the job. Once the calculations were worked out it was established that Fenner series C gearboxes together with Fenner QD:E inverters would suit the application perfectly.”

Lee Cooke, Electrical Systems Manager at UK Loco, explained that the Fenner inverters were particularly user-friendly, and why this was so important in the application, saying: “In a theatrical application such as this, it is important to be able to make adjustments swiftly and simply, both in rehearsal and before a live audience. With the Fenner QD:E inverters it was possible to easily and quickly ‘tune’ motor speeds to achieve the look that the creatives were aiming for.”

The show went ahead without a hitch and, once again, ERIKS knowhow made the difference. Alec McAndrew says: “We’ve had dozens of gearboxes and motors with different torques from ERIKS and none have ever failed to do what ERIKS said they would. This was no exception – at no point did we experience any problems with the Fenner gearboxes and, not surprisingly, we are continuing to consult ERIKS for our current and future commissions.”

For further information about Fenner geared drive and inverters from ERIKS, please email , or visit the website at

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