Pit Truss Structures

So, I’m not sure if this is something that teams started using this year or not because of the “truss” in the middle of the field, but I was interested in finding out where you purchased your truss setups for your pit. I know there was more than just 254 that used them, I just didn’t get around much at championship. I’m exploring different options for hanging and mounting things in our pit and I thought having this truss system would work quite well considering the monster of an HP screen 254 has mounted to one of theirs.


Versatruss sells modular aluminum trusses that are designed for portable displays.

IIRC MORT 11 has a nice pit truss setup.

Team 45 has had one for several years. I’d definitely recommend talking with them.

i talked to one team they said it was like the truss they got was 2000$. A waste of cash in my option.


Yeah, the stuff is pretty expensive.

I know it wouldn’t be cheap. I work for a metal distributor and aluminum isn’t that cheap raw. Fabricated and welded truss structures shouldn’t be cheap either.

If the team has the extra funding due to their hard work next season, I’m just exploring options. We already have a lot of the truely expensive tooling that you would think we could better spend our money on.

Team 2220 worked with one of our sponsors, Skyline Exhibits, last year (2012-13) to design a new pit for our team. A large amount of the new pit structure uses SkyTruss (http://www.skyline.com/small-island-exhibits/modular-systems/skytruss) a modular, flat-packing truss system they use for exhibits. It’s a very nice system, but if you were to buy our pit new, the estimated cost they gave us was $20000 (yes that’s the right amount of zeros). Fortunately they were able to find used rental components for most of it, reducing the cost for the team to $1000. Truss is awesome-- it’s so flexible.

Do you have any pictures of your setup?

Here is what 1334 uses for their pit and 4476 has also adopted it. It isn’t the truss stuff but it is cheaper and great for hanging stuff. It also sets up with 5 people very quickly.

Here’s an album I made last year: https://imgur.com/a/evZZQ

we are in the market for a truss system for our pits. We are concerned about being able to change the size of the structure to fit the varying pit sizes we see on the east coast (10x10, 9x10, 9x9, etc). I won’t forget the response we got from one team when I asked how they dealt with smaller pit sizes than 10x10. He thought for a second and said, “if the event didn’t have a 10x10 pit, we wouldn’t go to that event.” Oh, to have so many choices!

What experience do teams with trusses have with changing the size of their pits?

One of the reasons I’'m glad we didn’t pull the trigger this year is because we didn’t even get a 10x10 pit in Virginia! I know 612 was able to fit their truss pit in the swarm of people that was the DC pits, and I think they said it’s adjustable. I’ll look for them.

Ours uses a removable length of truss that can reduce the pit to be anywhere from 10x10 to 8x8. I’ll see if I can find a picture, but it basically uses set screws to lock the segment into place or remove it. If you look at the album I posted, we can remove the entire back segment with the white fabric covering it. Ours is professional, but I’d imagine a similar system could be cooked up for a tube or different truss style.

503 uses thick steel (not sure, it’s heavy dense metal so I assume it’s steel) pipe instead of the lighting trusses that’ve been posted in this thread, but on the same basic principle. We assemble the topmost canopy to our “swamp” on the ground with connectors that consist of a pin and a clamp that are easy enough to put on one-handed. Once the top is on, the whole thing is lifted and placed on more pipes that act like stilts, elevating the top of the pit to 10-15 feet (not sure of the exact measurement). To accommodate for varying pit space sizes, the back wall pipes vary in size. We always use a 5-foot pipe and another 5- or a 4-foot to fit 9-foot pits. 8-foot pits suck; we just exclude the green shell altogether and stick to our tool box and workbenches. Although we are in need of a new pit (our current one is very worn-down and has seen better days); anybody know of a quick and relatively cheap pit of a similar design?

My day job is with a lighting and staging company, we help 1902 out with their pit every year, the last couple using a small truss arch in the front and some simple stands in the back…here is the only picture I have from this year:

If you are serious about purchasing a truss pit send me a message, we are dealers for many truss lines and might get you a more realistic price. I think for a 10x10 it was around $1500 (before freight) last time I priced a cube design out, but I could be completely wrong.