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cuslog
09-05-2010, 03:07 PM
New thread so as not to hi-jack the 8x36 mill calamity thread.
I recently dropped a nice shiny new race engine on the floor. Looking at the rated capacities it shouldn't have happened, but it did and rather easily. Maybe someone else can benefit from my near miss.
The details: Princess Auto / chinese, shop floor engine hoist. Smooth, level concrete floor, Big block Chev engine, aluminum heads & manifold. Should be no more than 650 lbs +-, lift arm was in the 1/2 ton (1000 lb) hole, should be good to go, right ?
Engine on the engine stand, hook up nylon straps to the heads (don't want to mark anything), take up the weight with the hoist 'til I can see the weight is coming onto the hoist and off the engine stand (now I've got maybe 750 lbs on the hoist). Pull the pin on the stand, pull on the neck of the stand to pull the base of the stand off the mounting brackets, it doesn't want to come off, I pull harder, with a bit of a jerk and in an instant the front wheels of the hoist shoot straight back, the rear wheels go up about 5 ft. and the engine crashes straight down to the floor :eek: .
I've done it like this dozens of times, never a problem, 'til this one. I must have pulled a bit harder this time to get the engine stand to separate.
Damage wasn't too bad, gouged a blower pulley, squashed the oil filter and cracked a valve cover (not to mention the wounded pride). Could have been lots worse though, could have landed on my feet.
Careful guys, some of the ratings on these things are rather generous and they may be closer to tipping over than you may think.

rode2rouen
09-05-2010, 04:02 PM
I'm going to assume that you went with "nothing but the best" when you did the BB Chevy, so you may want to check out these cherry pickers:

http://www.rugerindustries.com/floor_cranes.html

Over the years I've worked in a number of heavy duty truck shops that had the Ruger brand hoists, even the worn out ones were better than Chincom cheepies.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I going to go read about the mill fiasco.


Rex

The Artful Bodger
09-05-2010, 04:30 PM
Did anything bend or did the arms for the front wheels telescope?

TriHonu
09-05-2010, 04:51 PM
It sounds like the engine swung out past the front wheels and lifted the rear wheels off the floor.

Does your base have telescopic legs that allow you to lengthen them out beyond the end of the boom?

The center of gravity of the load must remain within the perimeter of the wheels or the lift will tip over. I have seen engine cranes with the front wheels well in front of the load tip sideways, when someone tried to pull the load sideways. My brothers crane is one of the few that has swivel casters on all four corners. If you pull the load, the crane will follow the load in any direction.

I have only seen a couple engine hoists that the legs can both extend and adjust out in width. Most with adjustable legs are just set at an angle. As you extend them out the wheels also get further apart.

Too_Many_Tools
09-05-2010, 04:54 PM
New thread so as not to hi-jack the 8x36 mill calamity thread.
I recently dropped a nice shiny new race engine on the floor. Looking at the rated capacities it shouldn't have happened, but it did and rather easily. Maybe someone else can benefit from my near miss.
The details: Princess Auto / chinese, shop floor engine hoist. Smooth, level concrete floor, Big block Chev engine, aluminum heads & manifold. Should be no more than 650 lbs +-, lift arm was in the 1/2 ton (1000 lb) hole, should be good to go, right ?
Engine on the engine stand, hook up nylon straps to the heads (don't want to mark anything), take up the weight with the hoist 'til I can see the weight is coming onto the hoist and off the engine stand (now I've got maybe 750 lbs on the hoist). Pull the pin on the stand, pull on the neck of the stand to pull the base of the stand off the mounting brackets, it doesn't want to come off, I pull harder, with a bit of a jerk and in an instant the front wheels of the hoist shoot straight back, the rear wheels go up about 5 ft. and the engine crashes straight down to the floor :eek: .
I've done it like this dozens of times, never a problem, 'til this one. I must have pulled a bit harder this time to get the engine stand to separate.
Damage wasn't too bad, gouged a blower pulley, squashed the oil filter and cracked a valve cover (not to mention the wounded pride). Could have been lots worse though, could have landed on my feet.
Careful guys, some of the ratings on these things are rather generous and they may be closer to tipping over than you may think.

Glad to hear you were not hurt.

Did the lift fail or did you move the center of mass beyond the working envelope of the lift?

A question for the group....why are the bases of these engine lifts angled like the letter "A"?

Why aren't the bases wider for more stability?

The reason why I am asking is that I am planning on rebuilding all my engine cranes to make them have a wider and hopefully more stable base.

TMT

Too_Many_Tools
09-05-2010, 04:56 PM
It sounds like the engine swung out past the front wheels and lifted the rear wheels off the floor.

Does your base have telescopic legs that allow you to lengthen them out beyond the end of the boom?

The center of gravity of the load must remain within the perimeter of the wheels or the lift will tip over. I have seen engine cranes with the front wheels well in front of the load tip sideways, when someone tried to pull the load sideways. My brothers crane is one of the few that has swivel casters on all four corners. If you pull the load, the crane will follow the load in any direction.

I have only seen a couple engine hoists that the legs can both extend and adjust out in width. Most with adjustable legs are just set at an angle. As you extend them out the wheels also get further apart.


Well said.

Any links to those cranes whose legs extend out in width?

TMT

MotorradMike
09-05-2010, 05:22 PM
Cuslog:

I also have one of those Princess Auto hoists.

I take the lift weight ratings with a grain of salt. Maybe some of them are capable but the consistency of the welds is a bit alarming, I moved my 750Lb Mill with it in the 2,000Lb position and even at that it was groaning quite a bit.

Glad your motor didn't suffer too much.

EVguru
09-05-2010, 06:32 PM
I have a cheap Chinese 2 ton engine crane that came from Machine Mart. It has its faults, but then so has every folding crane I've ever used. Overall it's a great bit of kit and I've tested and even exceeded its ratings without problems. However, when you're using the One and Half Ton boom extensions, you do have to be careful about balance. I nearly came a cropper when loading a Lister CS engine into a van. The engine (in 'Start-O-Matic' form) weighs 450+Kg and to get the height we neede the boom on full extension. As we pushed over the sill, one wheel caught on grit, the engine swung forward and the crane tried to tip. It was only becuase I jumped on the back as soon as I felt it go light, that we didn't drop the engine. When I moved my BP clone, I made sure that the crane woudn't tip....

http://www.compton.vispa.com/mill_move/bp6.jpg

Sometimes it helps to have an 18 Stone mate to call on for help!

Whole thread of the mill move is here; http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net/showthread.php?t=36287&highlight=long+chang

When lifting engines off stands, me approach has always been to lift the stand just clear of the ground, then slide the stand off the engine. Not the other way around.

gnm109
09-05-2010, 08:00 PM
I have the same lift as shown above with the BP base and smiling Brit on it. It works well but what everyone said about not extendng it beyond the wheels is important.

Don Young
09-05-2010, 10:44 PM
I suspect most accidents like that are caused by over-balance problems and not by lack of weight lifting capacity. Many of the engine cranes seem very unstable with a high swinging load. Many of the engine stands also seem very marginal for base area and the ones with the column end wheels close together will tip over very easily. Hitting a small rock or tool while moving them can be very risky!

cuslog
09-05-2010, 11:30 PM
Mine is exactly the same as the one in the photo above and no, the tubes containing the front wheels were not extended. The comment about extending the tubes so the load is not outside the wheels is probably good advice for these particular units. I don't think there's anything printed directly on these units re: keeping the loads inside the wheel base but its probably a good idea.
I was shocked at how easliy (and quickly) it tipped over. Maybe my little mishap will serve as a "heads up" to someone else with a similar hoist.

hardtail
09-05-2010, 11:53 PM
There have been numerous threads on other forums with many other disasters on the Chicom hoists, where does the upper ram attach at in relation to the whole and the girder bracing????

Sorry for your woes.......blower pulley and alum heads has me thinkin this was a nice one?????

gnm109
09-06-2010, 12:07 AM
Posted in 8 X 36 Calamity instead. No delete function......:confused:

Black_Moons
09-06-2010, 03:36 AM
Always use your engine hoist at the *shortest* boom extention that will do the job. In my case I moved both my 1000lb lathe and mill on the 1ton extention point for lots of safty room.

Remember: moving the load or just raising/lowering it and suddenly stoping can put huge shock loads on the hoist. Keep it as low to the ground as possable when moving (less distance to fall) and don't be afraid to retract the boom first before moving, even if you have to extend it again later. Prep work is quicker then repair work.

EVguru
09-06-2010, 04:28 AM
Mine is exactly the same as the one in the photo above and no, the tubes containing the front wheels were not extended.

The legs on my crane above are fixed length. With the boom on full extension, the balance point is less than a foot behind the front casters. If you KNOW that and act accordingly, then no problem.


Keep it as low to the ground as possible when moving

Even better, put bars accross the legs, lower the load and take 90% of the load off the boom.

moe1942
09-06-2010, 09:22 AM
I guess it won't hurt to repeat that the load must never extend past the front of the legs. As soon as the load clears any obstacles lower down onto a couple of 2X6's resting on the legs.. You don't need a heavy load swaying in the breeze when moving.

cuslog
09-06-2010, 11:29 AM
EVguru:
"When lifting engines off stands, me approach has always been to lift the stand just clear of the ground, then slide the stand off the engine. Not the other way around."
Maybe I didn't describe it very well but this is exactly what I did.
Hardtail:
Yes it was (is) a nice one and not so much 'woes" as "whoa, that could have been a lot worse, could have landed on my feet". All fixed up now, in the car and running.

Too_Many_Tools
09-06-2010, 12:41 PM
Several times in the past I have had to lift a load that has lifted the back end of the crane...and have used myself as the counterweight...not a practice I would recommend.

I have seen one engine crane where the owner had made a series of counterweights made out of steel plates very similar to the weights one has on a weight machine. I have seen others use engine blocks, tractor weights or their wife. ;<)

TMT

Too_Many_Tools
09-06-2010, 12:43 PM
I have a cheap Chinese 2 ton engine crane that came from Machine Mart. It has its faults, but then so has every folding crane I've ever used. Overall it's a great bit of kit and I've tested and even exceeded its ratings without problems. However, when you're using the One and Half Ton boom extensions, you do have to be careful about balance. I nearly came a cropper when loading a Lister CS engine into a van. The engine (in 'Start-O-Matic' form) weighs 450+Kg and to get the height we neede the boom on full extension. As we pushed over the sill, one wheel caught on grit, the engine swung forward and the crane tried to tip. It was only becuase I jumped on the back as soon as I felt it go light, that we didn't drop the engine. When I moved my BP clone, I made sure that the crane woudn't tip....

http://www.compton.vispa.com/mill_move/bp6.jpg

Sometimes it helps to have an 18 Stone mate to call on for help!

Whole thread of the mill move is here; http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net/showthread.php?t=36287&highlight=long+chang

When lifting engines off stands, me approach has always been to lift the stand just clear of the ground, then slide the stand off the engine. Not the other way around.

The counterweight shown in the picture needs to be painted to match the engine crane. ;<)

TMT

metalmagpie
09-06-2010, 01:25 PM
Mine is exactly the same as the one in the photo above and no, the tubes containing the front wheels were not extended. The comment about extending the tubes so the load is not outside the wheels is probably good advice for these particular units. I don't think there's anything printed directly on these units re: keeping the loads inside the wheel base but its probably a good idea.
I was shocked at how easliy (and quickly) it tipped over. Maybe my little mishap will serve as a "heads up" to someone else with a similar hoist.

rule #1: for any significant weight the legs must be fully extended in all directions

rule #2: don't try to roll the hoist while lifting a lot of weight

I crumpled an engine hoist picking up a Bridgeport once. Legs weren't extended. I extended the legs, changed my underwear, and used the same hoist to pick it up again. It worked.

I tried rolling the hoist while it was holding a Bridgeport. It kind of worked, but not well at all. Later, I took off the casters and saw the puny little pins they call axles. Of course, mine were totally bent and the wheels barely turned. Pick up the load, roll a dolly under it with real casters, put the load down on the dolly, roll it to where you need it, and then if necessary roll the empty hoist over, repick the load, and place it.

I have been around riggers all my life and have moved a whole lot of machines up to 3500 pounds. 2 ton engine hoists can be very useful but you have to know about rules #1 and #2.

metalmagpie

Too_Many_Tools
09-06-2010, 01:46 PM
rule #1: for any significant weight the legs must be fully extended in all directions

rule #2: don't try to roll the hoist while lifting a lot of weight

I crumpled an engine hoist picking up a Bridgeport once. Legs weren't extended. I extended the legs, changed my underwear, and used the same hoist to pick it up again. It worked.

I tried rolling the hoist while it was holding a Bridgeport. It kind of worked, but not well at all. Later, I took off the casters and saw the puny little pins they call axles. Of course, mine were totally bent and the wheels barely turned. Pick up the load, roll a dolly under it with real casters, put the load down on the dolly, roll it to where you need it, and then if necessary roll the empty hoist over, repick the load, and place it.

I have been around riggers all my life and have moved a whole lot of machines up to 3500 pounds. 2 ton engine hoists can be very useful but you have to know about rules #1 and #2.

metalmagpie

Good point.

If I had the Harbor Freight engine hoists, I would replace the casters with larger ones and reweld all the joints.

My most nervous lift was with a Rockwell 20" metal cutting bandsaw...the engine lift was extended to its max, the boom was as high as it could go and I was the engine lift's counterweight. Looking back on it, the situation was an accident just waiting to happen.

TMT

metalmagpie
09-06-2010, 02:26 PM
If I had the Harbor Freight engine hoist, I would replace the casters with larger ones and reweld all the joints.

Problem is you need the tops of the legs to be as low as possible so it can roll under things. Rare is the caster that can take a lot of weight and is still 3" tall.

Real rolling shop cranes have pockets milled in the legs and integral casters to lower the leg top height. Means you have to have parallel legs, and the casters in back have to have a higher mount so they can swivel.

Too_Many_Tools
09-06-2010, 02:34 PM
Problem is you need the tops of the legs to be as low as possible so it can roll under things. Rare is the caster that can take a lot of weight and is still 3" tall.

Real rolling shop cranes have pockets milled in the legs and integral casters to lower the leg top height. Means you have to have parallel legs, and the casters in back have to have a higher mount so they can swivel.

Good points.

While an engine lift has to fit between the tires of a vehicle, I tend to use mine to move machines...and the legs are usually far too close together.

I will be rebuilding several of my engine cranes to allow for a wider and more stable base.

TMT

Cobra62
09-06-2010, 10:18 PM
Not to hijack a thread, but this reminds me of a question I was going to ask the board. I managed to drop my 12x36 chinese lathe last year in the very same way. I was also lucky not to be caught underneath it.

Lathe swung a bit and center of gravity was over the front wheels. Back wheels left the ground very quickly.

The lathe landed flat (mostly) and the only damage I can see is one corner of the base (about 1.5"x1.5") broke off.(corner to mounting hole).

Because my concrete contractor messed up my new garage pad I still haven't built the garage or moved the lathe since.
My question is, have I screwed the lathe up badly? Does anyone think it will still cut square and parallel?

Falcon67
09-06-2010, 11:09 PM
I've had many years of service out of my $119 hoist from Pep Boys. Works very well and seems plenty sturdy for what I do. I pull the engine and trans together out of the race cars, so that's about 650~700 lbs with the boom all the way out. To extract the motor from the engine stand(s), I lift the motor until the weight is off the stand, then remove the bolts that secure the stand from the back of the block. No yanking, I can take the stand apart later. I haven't dropped on yet - but I'm well aware that anything can happen. I keep both eyes open and never get under the engine. If I have to leave it for a bit, I'll lower it down to support blocks.

Edit - it was useless for lifting the mill as there was no way to get the weight on the skid inside the legs. I could have lifted and let it swing towards the crane...no. I used the old chain fall still in the ceiling. I can see lifting a lathe easy from the headstock end, but only if it's off the shipping skid or the box/skid is narrow.

Arcane
09-06-2010, 11:14 PM
To extract the motor from the engine stand(s), I lift the motor until the weight is off the stand, then remove the bolts that secure the stand from the back of the block. No yanking, I can take the stand apart later.

That's what I have always done...I can't imagine why anyone would do it differently.

oldtiffie
09-06-2010, 11:21 PM
If you have the need and space - use one of these:

https://www.machineryhouse.com.au/Products?stockCode=J061

https://www.machineryhouse.com.au/Products?stockCode=J070

https://www.machineryhouse.com.au/Products?stockCode=C170

https://www.machineryhouse.com.au/Products?stockCode=C1701

Too_Many_Tools
09-06-2010, 11:26 PM
Not to hijack a thread, but this reminds me of a question I was going to ask the board. I managed to drop my 12x36 chinese lathe last year in the very same way. I was also lucky not to be caught underneath it.

Lathe swung a bit and center of gravity was over the front wheels. Back wheels left the ground very quickly.

The lathe landed flat (mostly) and the only damage I can see is one corner of the base (about 1.5"x1.5") broke off.(corner to mounting hole).

Because my concrete contractor messed up my new garage pad I still haven't built the garage or moved the lathe since.
My question is, have I screwed the lathe up badly? Does anyone think it will still cut square and parallel?


First...glad to hear you were not hurt.

And FWIW...it could have been much worse...the first few lathes I ever saw had all fallen over when moved by "professionals"..it was like that was the way they were made..broken castings, wheels/handles shattered.

Hard to tell with your lathe...the corner breaking off may have cushioned the blow.

I would look for any hairline cracks in the castings.

If you can power it, see if everything runs and if so, does it run true.

The real test is to turn a test bar and see if it is true.

TMT

914Wilhelm
09-07-2010, 01:06 AM
I've got a cherry picker but when it comes to moving the 9 x 49 mill and the 14 x 40 lathe I've done each twice, by myself, rolling them on 3/4" water pipes. When I push, I don't push at the top of the machine, I use a pry bar to scoot the bottom. This helps to avoid the tipping torque. I also sweep the floor of debris as I go and I never pull towards myself or get between the machine and the wall. No accidents thus far (knock on wood). Hopefully I'll be able to do the big move of 100' next summer when the new shop comes to fruition. When this happens I'll use the forklift attachment I built for the tractor.

Too_Many_Tools
09-07-2010, 01:31 AM
I've got a cherry picker but when it comes to moving the 9 x 49 mill and the 14 x 40 lathe I've done each twice, by myself, rolling them on 3/4" water pipes. When I push, I don't push at the top of the machine, I use a pry bar to scoot the bottom. This helps to avoid the tipping torque. I also sweep the floor of debris as I go and I never pull towards myself or get between the machine and the wall. No accidents thus far (knock on wood). Hopefully I'll be able to do the big move of 100' next summer when the new shop comes to fruition. When this happens I'll use the forklift attachment I built for the tractor.

Have you weight tested the forklift attachment with the equivalent of the mill or lathe?

Better to test now and work out any bugs with a non valuable item than with the mill or lathe later.

If the forklift attachment goes on a front loader, the weight capacity may be less than one would expect.

TMT

914Wilhelm
09-07-2010, 01:55 AM
I've tested it, by unloading the lathe and the mill from the freight truck. I've also unloaded 3600 lb pallets of cement off a semi in my yard. Had to extend the stinger so I didn't feel nervous in the seat of my pants though. With any heavy loads I do it just like the pipes; keep the load as close as possible to the ground so there is little tipping force. Move slow and over even ground when the load is high and get it as low as possible as quick as possible.
My tractor has a skid steer attachment and I built the forklift attachment out of 1/2" x 4" angle. The forklift tines I got from a local forklift reseller for $50.00 for the pair cause the were bent 1/2" out of parallel at the tips.

http://i972.photobucket.com/albums/ae201/914wilhelm/IMG_0001.jpg

Too_Many_Tools
09-07-2010, 03:22 AM
I've tested it, by unloading the lathe and the mill from the freight truck. I've also unloaded 3600 lb pallets of cement off a semi in my yard. Had to extend the stinger so I didn't feel nervous in the seat of my pants though. With any heavy loads I do it just like the pipes; keep the load as close as possible to the ground so there is little tipping force. Move slow and over even ground when the load is high and get it as low as possible as quick as possible.
My tractor has a skid steer attachment and I built the forklift attachment out of 1/2" x 4" angle. The forklift tines I got from a local forklift reseller for $50.00 for the pair cause the were bent 1/2" out of parallel at the tips.

http://i972.photobucket.com/albums/ae201/914wilhelm/IMG_0001.jpg

Looking good.

I mentioned testing since I looked at a commercial loader attachment recently that only was rated for 2000lbs....I expected much more.

TMT

Evan
09-07-2010, 12:40 PM
I thought it might be instructive to draw a diagram of the balance points for an average el-cheapo 1 ton engine hoist. The steel balls are approximately to scale. It is pretty surprising how close the balance point comes to the wheels. I used the shipping weight of the hoist to calculate which was about 200 lbs.

http://ixian.ca/pics7/hoist.jpg

wierdscience
09-07-2010, 01:10 PM
This is what I do to engine hoists.Chop those stupid thin center cast iron caster wheels off the front and put rigid in line wheels on.

This is one I built for the yard using 4x8" 800lb rated pneumatic wheels,the one for the shop has 8x3 cast solid center 1200lb wheels.

Most of the HF/Chicom hoists have casters only rated for 500lbs each on them,even worse they are swivels with a crappy kingpin design.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/0903/wierdscience/DSCF0001-5.jpg

cuslog
09-07-2010, 01:54 PM
Evan;
Not sure I understand you drawing, if I do, I don't think I agree with it.
If I understand what you're saying, its that 2000 lbs about 8 - 12" out from the front wheels will put it exactly at its balance point ie; very easy to tip over (with a little pull from the front in my case) ?
In my experience, I had about 700 lbs where you have 2000 and it tipped over with a little pull from the front. That's what I found surprising.

Furthermore, I got out the manual for this and it says nothing about keeping the load inside the radius of the wheels - it probably should though.
After this experience, I would say the capacity on these things are over-rated.
I own 2 hydraulic cranes, a 15 Ton and a 22 ton, both have lift charts calculated at 85% of tipping (and loads go far out from the end of the outriggers). In my experience, I would say that 700 lbs was over 85% of tipping (not the 1000 lbs as marked).
The point I was trying to raise is that IMHO, these cheapo shop cranes are over-rated (capacity) and not to be trusted.

Evan
09-07-2010, 02:16 PM
Since I don't know the exact dimensions of the hoist it is only approximate but what it shows is that 2000 lbs will tip it if it is only a couple of inches in front of the wheels. The 200 lb weight will tip it if it is the same distance from the the wheels as the centre of gravity is back from the wheels since the hoist weighs 200 lbs.

In other words, you can figure where the centre of gravity of the hoist is fairly easily by seeing where it balances unloaded. Then you know how much weight it takes to tip it the same distance in front of the wheels. For any other load you divide that distance by the ratio of the weight of the hoist to the load. If the load is ten times the weight of the hoist the tipping point in front of the wheels will be the distance from the wheels to the hoist centre of gravity divided by ten.

As for the capcity of an engine hoist, I wouldn't trust it over 500 lbs, if that. The cheap ones have no lateral stability so if any side load is imposed due to unlevel ground or an accidental shift of weight such as the mill accident then there is nothing to stop it from collaspsing to either side. The lift member is a slender column and the hoist I pictured above has no bracing whatever to prevent that column from bending laterally at it's pivot point.


I had about 700 lbs where you have 2000 and it tipped over with a little pull from the front.

Not surprising at all. If it takes 2000 lbs 3 inches in front then it only takes 1000 lbs at six inches. Just a little swing forward will do that easily.

strokersix
09-07-2010, 03:48 PM
Yes, a little swing forward combined with wheels that don't roll easily and you can be in trouble. Don't forget the two inches you lose with the casters swung back too.

A cheapo engine stand rated at 1000 lbs will droop alarmingly with a 500 lb engine on it. I bet the 1000 lbs is the point of total collapse in a quiet environment meaning safety factor of zero. Maybe negative safety factor depending on how you choose to define.

As has been said before, I treat equipment of this nature as a kit or materials source, not a final product. I'm surprised I haven't heard of more people hurt by this crappy stuff.

demerrill
09-07-2010, 04:38 PM
Evan wrote: "The cheap ones have no lateral stability so if any side load is imposed due to unlevel ground or an accidental shift of weight such as the mill accident then there is nothing to stop it from collaspsing to either side. The lift member is a slender column and the hoist I pictured above has no bracing whatever to prevent that column from bending laterally at it's pivot point."

I experienced that very problem in lifting my G4003G 12x36 bench lathe off its shipping crate base using the HF engine hoist with extendable legs. The crate was sitting on on the side of an older concrete carport slab with a slight drainage slope to the front but also a slight, unnoticed belly slope toward the center. As soon as the lathe was lifted free it started to swing a few inches sideways but the momentum was sufficient to carry it on past the tipping point. Fortunately a common wood pallet was sitting where it came to rest and cushioned the blow, but it still mashed the motor start capacitor cover. (Of course, it had been sitting in its crate for over a year while the shop was still undergoing renovation and was out of warantee -- several lessons to be learned there.)

Actually, I wasn't aware that any not-so-cheap engine hoists have any provision for lateral support of the boom either. Upon incident post-mortem, I had thought of adding a couple of rope tethers between the end of the boom and the front legs but rejected the idea for lack of enough hands to control the tethers while operating the rest of the crane.

David Merrill

Too_Many_Tools
09-07-2010, 05:30 PM
Evan;
Not sure I understand you drawing, if I do, I don't think I agree with it.
If I understand what you're saying, its that 2000 lbs about 8 - 12" out from the front wheels will put it exactly at its balance point ie; very easy to tip over (with a little pull from the front in my case) ?
In my experience, I had about 700 lbs where you have 2000 and it tipped over with a little pull from the front. That's what I found surprising.

Furthermore, I got out the manual for this and it says nothing about keeping the load inside the radius of the wheels - it probably should though.
After this experience, I would say the capacity on these things are over-rated.
I own 2 hydraulic cranes, a 15 Ton and a 22 ton, both have lift charts calculated at 85% of tipping (and loads go far out from the end of the outriggers). In my experience, I would say that 700 lbs was over 85% of tipping (not the 1000 lbs as marked).
The point I was trying to raise is that IMHO, these cheapo shop cranes are over-rated (capacity) and not to be trusted.

Do you have a link to the charts you are discussing..would they be on the manufacturer's site?

TMT

Too_Many_Tools
09-07-2010, 05:37 PM
Yes, a little swing forward combined with wheels that don't roll easily and you can be in trouble. Don't forget the two inches you lose with the casters swung back too.

A cheapo engine stand rated at 1000 lbs will droop alarmingly with a 500 lb engine on it. I bet the 1000 lbs is the point of total collapse in a quiet environment meaning safety factor of zero. Maybe negative safety factor depending on how you choose to define.

As has been said before, I treat equipment of this nature as a kit or materials source, not a final product. I'm surprised I haven't heard of more people hurt by this crappy stuff.

Dead men tell no tales...?

TMT

Farbmeister
09-07-2010, 06:57 PM
As usual its NOT the ceap-o Chinese junk that caused the accident.. it was the un-informed American operating it.

The crash from the OP is clearly a case of a rated load outside the lifting envelope.

Yet its the lifts fault :rolleyes: :rolleyes: :rolleyes:

I bet he never read the instructions that came with it.

The rules are:

Never walk under a lift.
Never operate a lift outside its specs.
Never move a load with a lift.

saltmine
09-07-2010, 07:11 PM
An engine hoist has been a constant companion to me for the past 45 years.
I've lifted many engines, transmissions, axle housings, gearsets, toolboxes, machine tools and anything else that needed lifting. Most lifts are clearly marked as to their lifting capacity and the hydraulics are not even close to being overloaded, unless the hoist itself is way overloaded.

Any time you lift or hold something past the front wheels on ANY hoist, you'd better have a counterweight on the other end. Simple physics.

I once lifted a 348 truck engine and a Spicer five-speed out of a tilt-cab Chevy truck with a similar hoist. the engine/transmission together weighed over 1200lbs. And I had to lift it 3feet in the air, to clear the frame rails. BUT, I kept the mass of the load behind the wheels, and managed to bend one of the beams the wheels were attached to. We never got it straightened back out, but eventually had to shim up the wheel on that side, so it would lift evenly. Had the dealer not closed last year, they would have been still using that hoist.

My vote is on operator error.

Arcane
09-07-2010, 07:19 PM
rode2rouen's post (the very first reply to the OP) had a link to Ruger Industries floor cranes and on the second page of this link (http://www.rugerindustries.com/pdfs/HP2000.pdf) there is a very nice capacity chart of their 2000# floor crane complete with diagram.

Evan
09-07-2010, 07:35 PM
It is operator error and it's one that is very easy to make. It isn't obvious how the balance of forces works out when you stand there and look at it. It's very easy to sit and smugly criticize but when in a similar situation chances are you wouldn't see the hazard if you hadn't been told about it or already learned the hard way. It doesn't look overbalanced.

Arcane
09-07-2010, 07:44 PM
*Steps up on the old soapbox and starts in on the "woulda, coulda, shoulda" speel (complete with severe finger shaking) and then seamlessly switches to the self righteous "common sense would dictate...." line. * :D:D:D

Evan
09-07-2010, 07:54 PM
Seems to me that manufacturer also shares the blame. If the hoist is set to a particular capacity then it should be able to lift that capacity with a margin of safety. That margin of safety should take into account reasonable displacements of the load that would be expected in normal use.

saltmine
09-07-2010, 08:26 PM
As usual, Evan is right, here. I've noticed that many of the cheaper versions of these hoists have booms that allow the lifting hook to protrude way past the "center of balance" (front wheels) So, they too share the blame.

One has to be careful buying and using these Chinese copies of existing American made tools. More often than not the manufacturer has no idea what the tool is to be used for, or how it's supposed to be used.

A good example of this happened to a friend of mine about a year ago. He was replacing a cylinder head on a Chevy V-6. Being what GM calls a "net build" engine, it relies on production line accuracy for almost everything that used to be adjustable. If the parts are machined correctly, it will perform perfectly. They also use "Torque-to-yield" bolts to retain the cylinder heads.
This requires the old bolts (stretched) have to be thrown away, and new bolts have to be used. There is a very involved process in order to get the TTY bolts properly tightened, and a special tool is also required.

My friend called me and asked about the process, and what tools were needed. I gave him a brief outline of the job at hand, and told him I've got the tool in question. He said that's alright, he would buy one at the local "VatoZone" discount parts store.OK I said.

About two hours later I got another call from him asking if I knew how to use the tool (torque angle gage), yes, and could I please come over and show him...because there were no instructions in the box with his new tool.

When I got there, I could see frustration on his face all the way from the street. He had the tool on one of the head bolts, and was totally puzzled as to how it was supposed to work. One quick look told me that half of the parts to the tool were missing, and the tool was useless. I asked him if he had lost any of the parts, or if there were any left in the box...He said no.
We spent a half-an-hour looking all over the place, with no luck.
I told him to box it up and go see if he could get a refund..because it wasn't all there. I went back to my shop, and got my TTY torque angle gage.

I showed him how it worked, and how to set it up. He immediately saw there were parts missing from the one he'd bought. Typical, Chinese copying at work. They bought a torque angle gage, didn't know how it was to be used, and somehow lost a critical part. But, when they got it back to China, they made a whole bunch of them....and sold them to unsuspecting Americans, who didn't know how they worked either. BTW, he got a full refund.

Black_Moons
09-07-2010, 08:44 PM
I still say the OP should of been using the 1ton or less boom length setting. This moves the lifting point way back from the tip point.

Just because it says 1/2ton and your lifting less then 1/2ton does not make that the 'best' setting for the job, Its the safty limit.

Infact, id use the highest rated setting that can lift the boom high enough for the required job at hand, from the OP it sounds like he only needed to lift it a few feet, the 1ton setting on mine will hit the ceiling before running outta travel.

Shifts in the load or raising the load with a 'jerking' motion, or setting up resonance with the straps as you lift it in pulses from the jack (Spring of the boom), Or suddenly stoping the load when its being lowered can multiply the weight the lift and straps sees by several fold too. While this should of been taken into account when it was given its 1/2ton rating, and may of been, Its still allways better to derate things further yourself.

lazlo
09-07-2010, 09:10 PM
As usual its NOT the ceap-o Chinese junk that caused the accident.. it was the un-informed American operating it.

The crash from the OP is clearly a case of a rated load outside the lifting envelope.

Yet its the lifts fault :rolleyes: :rolleyes: :rolleyes:


First of all, the OP is Canadian, and second -- why would you think the same Chinese engine hoist that's sold all over the world isn't made of the same Chinese Cheese their bolts are made from? Maybe that would explain how Harbor Freight/Pep Boys/Princess Auto/Arc Euro/Hare & Forbes can sell them for less than the cost of the materials?

That would explain the many disasters on the web like this one:

Engine hoist scare (http://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/showthread.php?t=194915)
http://i164.photobucket.com/albums/u15/rtgeorge_album/hoist3.jpg

Notice the location of the upper truss support...

wierdscience
09-07-2010, 09:49 PM
We sell the things at work,or we used to.Once the one have leaves that's it.

15 years ago they would come in all 3/16 & 1/4" wall tube,now they are all 10/11 ga.

Used to they have decent casters that would support 1000-1500-lbs each,now they won't hold up a tea cart.

They don't even paint the things now like they used to.

They used to cost $350-400,now they cost $199.00.

Chinese "quality"is dropping,literally.

cuslog
09-07-2010, 10:34 PM
If the printing around the bolt hole says "1/2 Ton", that means the rated capacity with the boom extension in that bolt hole IS 1/2 Ton (1000 lbs). To say it another way, a reasonable person should be able to expect this piece of equipment to lift 1000 lbs with a reasonable safety margin. If it tips over with 700 lbs on the hook (30% below the mfr's reccomended limit), that, to me, is over rated.

914Wilhelm
09-07-2010, 10:52 PM
Aren't Canadians (north) Americans?

cuslog
09-07-2010, 11:04 PM
Hey, 914Wilhelm;
My sentiments exactly.

saltmine
09-07-2010, 11:05 PM
That's why construction cranes have huge counterweights.

lazlo
09-07-2010, 11:10 PM
Aren't Canadians (north) Americans?

I was referring to Farbmeister's "ignorant American" comment.

It's the same Chinese engine hoist, sold all over the world (including the one that comes with the British counter-weight :)), and the 'net is rife with pictures of catastrophic failures. The picture of the collapsed hoist I posted is from Pep Boys, the American equivalent of Princess Auto (where the OP bought his).

As always, you get what you pay for.

Evan
09-07-2010, 11:56 PM
No way they can all be the same Robert.

:eek: :eek:

http://ixian.ca/pics7/hoist2.jpg

lazlo
09-08-2010, 12:15 AM
No way they can all be the same Robert.

It's probably an American hoist :) Also, notice it's got the upper truss support in the correct location above the ram.

Evan
09-08-2010, 12:26 AM
Never mind that. Why do you think he lifted it up like that? To work on the underside? Darwin was right.

Black_Moons
09-08-2010, 12:30 AM
Ok, Now I dare you to take a picture with someone brave enough to get under that deathrig!

PS: Car seems to be.. missing the whole front end. Cars tend to get a LOT lighter when you do that...

Evan
09-08-2010, 12:56 AM
How much farther do you think it needs to be lifted before it swings off the jack stands? What happens if a gnat lands on the wrong spot?

Too_Many_Tools
09-08-2010, 12:28 PM
How about some suggestions from the group for modifying hoists to make them better and safer?

TMT

wierdscience
09-08-2010, 12:40 PM
Buy the steel and build your own.

Too_Many_Tools
09-08-2010, 12:55 PM
Buy the steel and build your own.


According to what plans?

Some of the homebuilt ones look like the boys from OCC built them.

TMT

Willy
09-08-2010, 01:00 PM
Ok, Now I dare you to take a picture with someone brave enough to get under that deathrig!

PS: Car seems to be.. missing the whole front end. Cars tend to get a LOT lighter when you do that...

This video is always the "poster child" example of how things are done on Darwin's farm.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tD4KiQEnxwQ

Git-er-done.:D

Actually after having watched quite a few in the above series in the David's farm collection, I can honestly say that the entertainment value far exceeds that of OCC!

wierdscience
09-08-2010, 01:03 PM
According to what plans?

Some of the homebuilt ones look like the boys from OCC built them.

TMT

Copy a US design,they do exist you know.

wierdscience
09-08-2010, 01:09 PM
This video is always the "poster child" example of how things are done on Darwin's farm.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tD4KiQEnxwQ

Git-er-done.:D

Actually after having watched quite a few in the above series in the David's farm collection, I can honestly say that the entertainment value far exceeds that of OCC!

I love the tractor muffler sticking out of the hood:D

Too_Many_Tools
09-08-2010, 01:39 PM
Copy a US design,they do exist you know.


Links?

http://www.google.com/images?hl=en&q=engine%20crane&um=1&ie=UTF-8&source=og&sa=N&tab=wi

Which one do you suggest?

TMT

The Artful Bodger
09-08-2010, 04:52 PM
How about some suggestions from the group for modifying hoists to make them better and safer?

TMT

Understand the principles and limitations of the one you have and use it safely.

Always extend the legs and lock them in place.


Do not swing the load, not at all. Do not try to move the machine with a load on except with the load really low, just an inch or so from the floor. Even better get a couple of planks and lay these across the legs and lower the load onto them for moving around.

Just my thoughts.

Too_Many_Tools
09-08-2010, 06:49 PM
Here's a crane that anyone could copy...

http://media.photobucket.com/image/american%20engine%20crane/reeferb0y/GolfBrakes004-1.jpg

Anyone know why more cranes aren't made of I-beam material?

TMT

oldtiffie
09-08-2010, 07:02 PM
Originally Posted by wierdscience
Buy the steel and build your own.


According to what plans?

Some of the homebuilt ones look like the boys from OCC built them.

TMT

Start here:
http://www.google.com.au/#hl=en&source=hp&q=engine+crane+plans&aq=5&aqi=g10&aql=&oq=engine+crane&gs_rfai=&fp=3c94bedd4a0a6bc7

Evan
09-08-2010, 07:42 PM
Anyone know why more cranes aren't made of I-beam material?


I and H beams have virtually zero torsional strength alone. They must be braced and cross braced.

Too_Many_Tools
09-08-2010, 07:54 PM
I and H beams have virtually zero torsional strength alone. They must be braced and cross braced.


Makes sense.

So would square or round members be better?

TMT

Evan
09-08-2010, 08:31 PM
Square is usually more practical than round. Round has the greatest strength for a given amount of material.

camdigger
09-08-2010, 08:55 PM
Rounds are more efficient in torque resistance, while rectangular are slightly more efficient in bending. In addition, it is easier to fit rectangular pieces together than coping round sections. IMHO, anyway.

FWIW, I used round for the one I built simply because I had 65 or so +/- 33' lengths of higher grade pipe laying around. After the build, I had 64...

wierdscience
09-08-2010, 09:05 PM
Links?

http://www.google.com/images?hl=en&q=engine%20crane&um=1&ie=UTF-8&source=og&sa=N&tab=wi

Which one do you suggest?

TMT


The best IMHO,they practically give you all the measurements.Prolly cost a $1,000 in materials and parts to DIY one though.I have seen them come up at municipal auctions for $4-500 in need of a new cylinder.

http://www.mytoolstore.com/heinwer/hw93806.html