iWeiss Theatrical Solutions


Since the SmartWire-DT worked so well, we made this a stock control system. It saves a lot of time and trouble, and it ultimately saves the client quite a bit of money while giving them more capability.
Paul Kelm, Automation Production
Manager, iWeiss Theatrical Solutions


iWeiss produces theatrical drapery, rigging and automation controls. In theatre, automation is anything that moves. Previously, items were moved by an individual pulling a rope or pushing a platform. Today, it’s mostly motorized. The iWeiss automation division offers solutions that allow theatres to move devices as small as 25 pounds to more than 1,000 pounds. And to do so safely and repeatedly.


iWeiss Theatrical Solutions was contracted to install a theatre system in a church community center, where cost-effectiveness was a key component to the design. The space was also a rental venue, which meant the operating staff was not consistent or trained. Therefore, the system’s feedback needed to be clear and concise, as well as easily accessed and changed.


iWeiss set up the church’s dream system, which is 15 winches, with a control system utilizing SmartWire-DT by Eaton. “We initially got interested in SmartWire-DT technology when we looked at designing a control system and wanted to minimize the number of wires from our control station out to the machines,” said Paul Kelm, Automation Production Manager at iWeiss.

With SmartWire-DT, their system went from 50 conduit runs to two. And those two could run 100 axes, if desired.

iWeiss’ last control system required a control panel and a drive enclosure for every machine and those drive enclosures were fairly costly. With SmartWire-DT, they reduced this to simply one drive enclosure with distributed I/O across the entire system. iWeiss removed the cost of individual drive enclosures and incurred very minimal costs by adding more SmartWire-DT modules per machine.


The Eaton lean solution using SmartWire-DT and the HMI-PLC controller allowed iWeiss to:

  • Decrease their manufacturing timeframe and site installation costs
  • Offer clients expandability for future installations at minimal cost