Rigger

Move weighty objects with ease.
picture of Rigger

Quick Stats


Salary Range
$25,000 – $66,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor


What do Riggers do?

When something heavy must be picked up and moved, a system of ropes, bolts, pulleys, and winches is used. This system is called “rigging,” and your job as a Rigger is to set the system up.

As a Rigger, you may work for shipyards, lumberyards, manufacturing plants, or construction companies. When you’re directed to move an item, you walk all the way around it, determining the best rigging to use. A Rigger makes sure the ropes he or she uses can support the item’s weight, and that the pulleys and winches are in good condition.

You attach ropes and cables to the item using hand tools, and then string the ropes to a crane. Then you help the Crane Operator move the item safely by giving hand signals.

In some cases, you may move the item yourself using smaller equipment. You may have to maneuver the load through extremely small spaces, so you must ensure that the load is properly anchored, and won’t sway or drop.

When the load is placed in its new location, you exhale the breath you’ve been holding in because you know the load was moved properly, and nothing was broken or damaged in the process. You remove the rigging from the load, and put it away for the next job.

You may work for the film or theater industry, moving very large sets from place to place. You select the proper tools to move the equipment, and tie that equipment to a support structure such as a beam or ceiling. Then you use hand tools to move the heavy pieces around. Be very careful not to damage this expensive equipment!


Should I be a Rigger?

You should have a high school degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Levelheaded: You hold your emotions in check, even in tough situations.
  • Calm Under Pressure: You keep your cool when dealing with highly stressful situations.
  • Ready for a Challenge: You jump into new projects with initiative and drive.

  • Also known as: Crane Rigger, Erector, Fly Rail Operator, Gantry Rigger, Hand Rigger, Heavy Lift Rigger, Loft Rigger, Outside Rigger See More

    How to become a Rigger

    Most Riggers have no higher education and get on-the-job training. Think about earning a Certificate to increase your competitiveness in the field. Chart?chd=s:9iaaaa&chl=no+college+%2887%25%29|certificate+%2812%25%29||||&cht=p3&chs=466x180&chxr=0,87,87
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