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Lifting ideas for somewhat heavy items and small spaces

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  • Lifting ideas for somewhat heavy items and small spaces

    I have several smallish areas that constitute the shop. There are a couple of doorways involved as well. Areas are separated by up to 30+ feet.

    I need to lift items up to maybe 500 lb, move them, etc. Basically lumps of cast iron, commonly known as machine tool parts and machines.

    I have a couple chain hoists and a runner (good brands, Coffing, etc, no HF) that I have acquired, but have not yet got a good place to hang them from.

    the original idea was to put up a length of 4" or 5" I beam, but it relatively rapidly became obvious that I would need to bend the beam like on shipboard, in order to get what I needed to move where I wanted it. The overhead isn't well suited to hanging a beam, even if I could bend it, but for a longer "track" it would be needed as support. A straight beam would be fairly do-able from the support standpoint, but either short and less than useful, or long and in the way bigtime.

    The overhead (wood joists) would work for keeping a beam from tipping over on its supports, but is really no good for holding one up. And in the prime needs area, I have heating pipes that block it, and are basically un-movable.

    The immediate problem is getting a 200 to 300 lb lathe bed* up on the bench where I can scrape it. And lifting it to turn it, etc while working on it. Some of you folks would just pick that up, but I'm feeling too old for that, and it outweighs me anyhow.

    That suggests an engine hoist. But.........no way one will fit where I want to lift things.... they look smallish, but when you want to move anything with one, you need 10 feet of open space to do anything reasonable.

    What that leaves is basically a question...... as in IS there any other solution?

    I've seen some shop cranes, but they tend to be too big.

    And typical small "jib cranes" just won't handle the loads. Good for chucks and small work, not so good for bigger. And they don't move, if it won't swing sufficiently to cover the area, you are SOL. JS' new one isn't bad, but I don't have room for that size to swing, won't swing through the door.

    * That's what it figures out to be at 450 lb/cubic foot, but it feels a bunch heavier than that.
    1601

    Keep eye on ball.
    Hashim Khan

  • #2
    Check out the sky hook, they have a version that rolls, dont take up a lot of real estate, and are real stout.
    Do a Google on sky hook for shop.
    Bill in SE Idaho
    With enough time & motivation anything can be fixed

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    • #3
      I have 2 small push around fork or die lifts. forks are about 30" long, the front wheels are outside in width & even with the fork tips. They raise 6' high, push easy, are small to store & turn on a dime. One has a hyd hand pump & is rated for 1000#, the other is 12V elect/hyd rated for 1500#. the small one has lifted 3000#. You can't tip them over & are a lot handier than my forklift. I paid $50/ea on C/L & use them almost every day. They have small forklift style mast & dual chains just like a 30"x40" forklift only easier in close tight spots. I inloaded a Lincoln250/250 welder in a rolling cage with a built in weldind table out the side door of my wifes minivan this week with the small one. A lot easier than the reg forklift. It's still on there as I took everthing off the welder to clean & paint & raised it to eye level.
      "Let me recommend the best medicine in the
      world: a long journey, at a mild season, through a pleasant
      country, in easy stages."
      ~ James Madison

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      • #4
        You can also lift with a chain around the forks or build an add on & lift as high as you want. Pm me your e-mail if you want a picture.
        "Let me recommend the best medicine in the
        world: a long journey, at a mild season, through a pleasant
        country, in easy stages."
        ~ James Madison

        Comment


        • #5
          J,we have some roll around A-frame hoists at work that we built to take on jobs with us.They are 78" tall and 5' long,have 6" swivel casters on each corner and are constructed entirely of pipe.

          Four pieces of 1" for the A-frame legs on each end and a section of 2" 7' long for the top member.There are 2- 8" long pieces of 2-1/2" that slip over the 2"top member that have a large D-ring welded to each.

          Those two act as trolleys of sorts and allow the hoists to be positioned anywhere along it's length.

          The casters are 650lb capacity each,these hoists were made to roll through a walk through door and fit between machinery isles while carrying 1500lbs each.

          We have used them to remove and install 80hp DC motors and used them in pairs to move things like one job where we had to move a 25' long 1900lb H-beam through a plastic plant by going in a side door and weaving through 400' of 4' wide walk ways.

          Lifting power comes from either one or two 1Ton chain hoists with shortened hand chains.

          If your interested I can snap a few pictures and post them.
          I just need one more tool,just one!

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          • #6
            The skyhook is pretty nice, especially with the narrow rolling base, but for a grand+ all told, it should be.

            Wierd..... you lost me at 5 foot...... no A-frame is happening.

            I need to poke things through this door and land them on the bench seen inside



            The beam was going to go through the doorway up where the white beadboard is seen, with a runner so that I could lift it outside the door, then run it in and let it down on the bench... The second want is to be able to then pick it off the bench and move it to the lathe that is out of the picture to the left inside. Most things I'd want to put on the drill press to the left of the door outside I can pick up fine, and the mill to the left of that isn't for big stuff. The straight beam would have to span 6 foot of bench, and another 6foot or more outside back toward the camera in order to stay out of the way to at least some degree. Furnace is to the left of the camera. (Yes, it's snug in the winter)

            Tube fixture over bench can be moved, and the flexi-light is temporary for scraping. Arbor press is probably low enough, maybe not. Misc outside is just a scrap barrel, easily dealt with.
            Last edited by J Tiers; 03-10-2012, 01:49 AM.
            1601

            Keep eye on ball.
            Hashim Khan

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            • #7
              I built a jib crane for my shop rotates 360°. The jib pivot could be moved up or down to suit. it was conservatively rated at 200lbs. http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net/sho...ight=jib+crane

              Bob

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              • #8
                In that space I would break the problem in two. You need a very compact lifter and a dolly system. If you are only lifting 300lbs, I would nail two temporary supports into the joists around every lifting position needed. Lift the part and put it on wheels. Move it. Lift it again in the new position. Not an elegant solution, but one that would work.

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                • #9
                  It is not too far removed from an engine lift (same general layout) but might be shrunk down enough that you could make use of it...try a search for "huntleigh porta hoist"...it is one brand of portable lift used in the health care system (it just so happens one is for sale here, the owner currently uses it to move motorcycle engines around their shop, the particular model load limit being 175 Kg)

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                  • #10
                    We had an appliance lift at my previous place of employment. Basically it's a push-around mini fork lift. If I recall, it had a maximum lift height of something under 40 inches- all you need to reach benchtop height. It's clear on three sides so you could roll it end-on up to a workbench, or come alongside of the workbench.

                    I liked the idea of the coffin lift that Evan suggested a few weeks back.
                    I seldom do anything within the scope of logical reason and calculated cost/benefit, etc- I'm following my passion-

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                    • #11
                      Google a "big Joe" or find some big guys to befriend.

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                      • #12
                        I use a cart that hoists. I think it is referred to as a die lift or something. Mine is cable lift and rather short and tall and old. Table is maybe 2'x2', lifts to maybe 5-6' via a cable crank and pully. Others exist that also serve as a work surface.
                        http://vestilmfg.com/products/ergosol/elevating_carts.

                        Mine is similar to the two tier lift in the top pic
                        http://www.lexcoeng.com/index.mv?BODY=products_die_cart


                        On further google searching for u I found a link back to here. Ed appears to be describing what I have and it is handy
                        http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net/showthread.php?t=21495
                        Last edited by plastikosmd; 03-10-2012, 09:33 AM.
                        "Good judgment comes from experience, and often experience comes from bad judgment" R.M.Brown

                        My shop tour www.plastikosmd.com

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                        • #13
                          You need a bigger door! On invite over a couple of buddies to move that lathe bed in.
                          James Kilroy

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by RussZHC
                            It is not too far removed from an engine lift (same general layout) but might be shrunk down enough that you could make use of it...try a search for "huntleigh porta hoist"...it is one brand of portable lift used in the health care system (it just so happens one is for sale here, the owner currently uses it to move motorcycle engines around their shop, the particular model load limit being 175 Kg)
                            Or a patient lift (Hoyer lift) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hoyer_lift . Same principal as an engine, small capacity and footprint. You can find them for sale on Craigslist.

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                            • #15
                              In my neighborhood if you drive down to Home Depot in the morning you will have your pick of sturdy laborers. Any two of those guys can put your part on that bench. Then they go away entirely. Zero storage requirement.

                              :-)

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