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Thread: One Man Portable Gantry Cranes

  1. #1
    Too_Many_Tools Guest

    Default One Man Portable Gantry Cranes

    Suggestions for an one man portable gantry crane needed.

    I look at what is on Ebay and see nothing that a single man could erect without assistance.

    http://business.shop.ebay.com/Indust...=p3286.c0.m282

    Also a question...if one stacks two I-beams is the combination equal to one larger I-beam of the same height?

    Example...if one stacks and bolts together two 4" I-beams are they as strong as one single 8" I-beam?

    TMT

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    SE, Michigan
    Posts
    2,056

    Default

    Where are you trying to erect it? A little creativity goes a long ways!

    If you put a pivot at the base of your gantry, so that the vertical beams will pivot into position, you can lift it most of the way up with a small hydraulic jack...then have a pin that slides into position. Instead of 2 casters, you could have four for each "leg", so that it would sit in place. You would lay the cross beam (top) down first. Connect both vertical pieces to it. Now bring the bases, with their wheels into position, placing the pivot bolt in each side. Now, using a fabricated holder, put your hydraulic jack (or high lift jack) into position and start jacking the vertical members up. Once it gets to a certain point, you will be able to manually push it the rest of the way, or use a comealong to pull from the opposite side of the hydraulic jack. Make a brace so that it can't go past 90 degrees. Now you bolt it in to position, preferably with pieces of strap iron, creating a triangle on the base.

    I too have to do things with one person. :-) Right now I'm turning my hydraulic press into a cherry picker to move a 300 lb production mill. I moved it with a buddy last time and it was still too heavy. This will be a much safer way.

  3. #3
    Too_Many_Tools Guest

    Default

    I have found myself several times where I need to move a machine (500-1200 pounds) in tight quarters by myself at a remote location (basement/second floor) at a moment's notice.

    It would seem that a portable ONE MAN setup/teardown gantry crane would be a logical acquistion.

    There seems to be little available.

    TMT

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Temple, Tx
    Posts
    1,051

    Default

    Are two stacked I beams equivalent.... No, not unless they have the same web thickness, the same cap thickness and are welded together. Any slip along the junction of the two beams weakens the combination. Bolting them together cannot be counted on to prevent a small amount of slip.

  5. #5
    Too_Many_Tools Guest

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Bruce Griffing
    Are two stacked I beams equivalent.... No, not unless they have the same web thickness, the same cap thickness and are welded together. Any slip along the junction of the two beams weakens the combination. Bolting them together cannot be counted on to prevent a small amount of slip.
    Thanks for responding to this question.

    I understand the limited slippage issue but wouldn't it be limited by the bolts.

    TMT

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Lancashire, UK.
    Posts
    247

    Default

    I wonder if its feasable to make something, like an engine crane, you build up one a frame and assemble it into an engine crane affair, then build up another a frame flat and join the crane rail to it (using the engine lifter), then use the a frame engine crane end to lift up the other end of the crane rail, then bolt it up to itself, a one mane semi self erecting gantry, the engine lift section being able to be used on its own for small jobs.
    Another crazy idea.
    Build it, bodge it, but dont buy it.

  7. #7
    Too_Many_Tools Guest

    Default

    I guess one of the big issues I see with an ONE MAN portable gantry crane is how do you get the I-beam mounted...when you are trying to mount it above your head height.

    One approach is to break the I-beam into manageable pieces..making the final I-beam component from a series of smaller LIGHTER I-beams.

    Another approach would be to use an aluminum I-beam...3x lighter the steel equivalent.

    One of the basic design requirements is to make each of the components of the grantry crane light enough so one man can handle them...with some of them being handled above one's head while you assemble them. The portability of the components also are important when you have to haul the crane downstairs, up to a second story floor or roof.

    TMT

  8. #8
    Too_Many_Tools Guest

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by dr pepper
    I wonder if its feasable to make something, like an engine crane, you build up one a frame and assemble it into an engine crane affair, then build up another a frame flat and join the crane rail to it (using the engine lifter), then use the a frame engine crane end to lift up the other end of the crane rail, then bolt it up to itself, a one mane semi self erecting gantry, the engine lift section being able to be used on its own for small jobs.
    Another crazy idea.
    A good idea.

    I have seen very small light "engine cranes" used in the hospital industry to lift patients that could be modified to lift an I-beam.

    TMT

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    DeWinton, Alberta, Canada.
    Posts
    721

    Default

    This is a great site with the product that you are looking for.

    Take some time and browse the toal site and all their models. They answer so many questions and have so many good ideas. I know you will like it.

    http://www.wallacecranes.com/

    I know when I get around to making one, this site has a huge number of answers to styles, beam loading and designs .

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Temple, Tx
    Posts
    1,051

    Default

    If you can lift one end of the cross beam a short distance, you could make uprights with a series of support holes. The crane would be set up with the cross beam at the bottom initially. You would gradually raise the beam, moving one end up a few inches at time followed by the other end. The uprights would need to be freestanding for this to work.

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