Auctioneer uses Skyjack masts to reach new heights

Skyjack lifts help Bonhams to prepare its galleries’ lighting displays

Bonhams has customised the Skyjack SJ 16 units with its own livery.
Bonhams has customised the Skyjack SJ 16 units with its own livery.

Skyjack is helping Bonhams auction house to prepare lighting displays in its flagship London salesroom.

The auctioneer is using a pair of Skyjack SJ 16 self-propelled vertical mast lifts to illuminate its diverse range of sale items, ranging from classic artworks to vintage automobiles.

The units, which offer 6.75m work heights, were sold to Bonhams by aerial work platform (AWP) supplier, Rapid Platforms.

“We chose the Skyjacks for their ease of use, quick set up, and excellent manoeuvrability, which make navigating the machines around priceless artwork a less scary prospect,” commented Tim Kearley, gallery manager at Bonhams.

“The fact we can move around the gallery at height saves time during set ups, so we meet our deadlines. The simple controls make it easy to use, even for people who don’t normally operate this type of machinery.

“I would highly recommend these Skyjacks to our other branches – they make life so much easier, especially when two people are on the platform at the same time,” he added.

Bonhams purchased the Skyjack duo in October 2013. The machines have since been used approximately two days every week to prepare the company’s main galleries.

With around three sales events staged each week, lighting has to be constantly readjusted at the London salesroom. This can be a time-consuming and nerve-wracking job, but Kearley says that the units have proved to be a reassuring presence since their arrival.

“Everyone says how intuitive they are to control, which is very reassuring when hanging a priceless chandelier – we certainly need a machine we can rely on,” he explained.

Bonhams’ London salesroom has a 6m-high ceiling, making the SJ 16 units well-suited to the firm’s requirements. The lifts provide a compact footprint and impressive manoeuvrability making them ideal for indoor work, according to the auction house.

The SJ 16 also features a 0.41m traversing platform, providing increased access and the ability to reach over obstacles. The model’s slide-away platform provides easy access for maintenance, and its non-marking wheels help to keep the galleries’ floors in good condition.

Bonhams has even gone to the trouble of spraying the Skyjack AWPs in its own livery.

“It has made them unique to us and very appealing when we see them working in the galleries,” he concluded.


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