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Flying Decks Transform High-Rise Construction Industry

Custom CM Powerstar, the CM Compensator Cuts High-Rise Construction Costs

Construction | Hoisting & Lifting Equipment | By Columbus McKinnon Training | Apr 18, 2018

Flying Decks are used in the construction of high-rise buildings, using pour-in-place floor forms that slide into the building. This system dramatically increases productivity, reducing the need for restoring and increasing the speed of deck construction (and corresponding labor) to cut forwork time in half.

The CM Compensator

Designed specifically for flying deck applications, this 15 ton CM Compensator Chain Hoist helps cut project time and labor costs in half for high-rise building construction projects.

It is used for load leveling of forms up to 30,000 pounds, sliding them out of building floors and into the upper deck by a tower crane.


How Flying Deck Applications Work

From below, you can see the crane pulling the deck out of the lower floor, where concrete has been poured and cured, and the deck detached. The CM Compensator is a custom build of the CM Powerstar with a single hook suspension for flying deck applications.


The single hoist body unit is available in 7½,  9, 10, 12, and 15-ton capacities and provides many benefits over the competitive offerings available in the market.

Improved Operation

Synchronizing issues are eliminated by using a single hoist unit rather that a double hoist unit. The result is a smooth predictable lift each time.  Electro-mechanical geared limit switches for both the up and down direction prevent the hook block from being accidentally run into the hoist causing damage and shutting down the operation. The single unit hoist has a lower current demand than the double unit which reduces the draw on the power supply.

Reduced Maintenance Costs and Time

The single hoist design requires less time to inspect and repair and fewer parts to stock/buy.

Superior Quality and Design

In addition to the geared limit switches, the CM Compensator custom Powerstar hoist has machined and hardened steel helical gears sealed in an oil bath power train reservoir which provides better performance and extended life.


The CM Powerstar offers a very robust design, utilizing high strength chain to reduce the required reeving. The heavy-duty chain container is manufactured out of steel and wire mesh for durability and strength as compared to competitive canvas containers. Additionally, the hook itself is heavy-duty with wide throat openings allowing for easier attachment of slings, stingers, and master links.