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Machine Shop and Tool Talk Shop Equipment, fabrication, repairs, how to fix it, which tool to use for the job. Machinist shop talk, straight to the point.

Machine Shop and Tool Talk

Gantry hoist or A Frame Hoist

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Old 12-18-2011, 10:59:27 PM
treasurechest treasurechest is offline
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Default Gantry hoist or A Frame Hoist

I am going to build an "A" frame hoist. I would like to see pictures of what you all have so I can come up with a plan for building mine. I wont be lifting anything over 1 ton. But I also like to overbuild things. So if anybody could post some pics of their "A" frame hoists that would be great.
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Old 12-19-2011, 10:53:47 AM
Cbum Cbum is offline
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Default Re: Gantry hoist or A Frame Hoist

While not home built this was given to me . It is a harbor frieght hoist and has been tested many times . Brother's son was a welder and just materials cost more than this did he made two lifts with it and donated it to my shop to keep it out of the weather

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Old 12-19-2011, 11:26:42 AM
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TWSlandlord TWSlandlord is offline
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Default Re: Gantry hoist or A Frame Hoist

I bought a portable aluminum one rated 3 tons (tested to 4 tons). It's spendier than building one out of steel, but I've needed to take it to remote locations when rigging out machinery. Holy cow....did it make some difficult things possible & easy.
mlmanufacturing makes the most cost effective product around, & sells them directly thru ebay.
- Have 2 trollies with hoists for odd loads.
- Have both heavy & light hoists, since heavy ones are cumbersome & slow for light loads.
- Pay a little extra to get products which preserve your headroom. It's easy to run out of height by the time you connect a beam, trolley, hoist, sling & load.
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Old 12-19-2011, 06:55:01 PM
Richard W. Richard W. is offline
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Default Re: Gantry hoist or A Frame Hoist

The harbor freight model has adjustable height using a hand crank. You may want to see how they did it?

Richard W.
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Old 12-19-2011, 09:53:25 PM
Brad Kelley Brad Kelley is offline
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Default Re: Gantry hoist or A Frame Hoist

We have the Harbor Freight lift in Dad's shop and it's worked great for working on our 9HP Case traction engine. The adjustable height has come in handy since his rafters are only 10' high, where if we need a high lift we can crank the beam down, place the lift between rafters, and crank the beam up above the rafters.

Other than that, I've been planning to design a lift for my future shop, so I've been browsing Ebay for ideas. There are a couple gantry cranes on there with enough photos to give you design ideas. Of course you'll still have to do the engineering calculations to select the right material (shape/thickness/etc.).
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Old 12-20-2011, 07:30:23 AM
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Doug Kimball Doug Kimball is offline
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Default Re: Gantry hoist or A Frame Hoist

Here is my 2 ton SpanCo which is aluminum. We have disassembled & moved it into a local museum to lift a steam engine and are in the process of reassembly. It was a Craig's List steal for $400!
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In Kennebunk, Maine;
Doug Kimball
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Old 12-20-2011, 10:51:56 AM
Heins Heins is offline
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Default Re: Gantry hoist or A Frame Hoist

This is the A frame that we built to work in our shop. The H beams for the legs came from a chisel frame I bought at a farm sale for $15, the wheels and hubs are off an old one way plow we had, and I bought the top I beam which was used. It will just clear our 14' doors on our shop. We can remove cabs on tractors when we have to work on tractor transmissons.
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Old 12-20-2011, 02:13:52 PM
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Default Re: Gantry hoist or A Frame Hoist

I haven't built mine yet, but I have a pile of 12 inch by 15 foot I-beams to play with along with one 15 inch by 18 footer that I think would make a pretty heavy duty crane/hoist.

For uprights, I have a pair of 6 inch square 3/8 wall thickness tubes with 8x10 1/2 inch thick mounting plates on one end that I bought from an old car dealership that closed down. The posts were from a car wash they had in one of the back rooms. I figure they should be plenty strong enough to support the weight, but I haven't decided yet whether to bolt the plates to the floor, or put them on a pair of cross bars with A-frame connections and put wheels under it. If I bolt it down.... sure enough, it will end up in the wrong location.

The I-beams were bought at salvage price when the old Burgess Battery plant was torn down in Freeport Illinois, and with two tiltbed truck loads purchased, I think it averaged out around $12.50 per beam by the time I got them all home. The Car Wash support posts I think I paid $10.00 or $20.00 for the pair.

I also have a pile of heavy duty 12 by 3 1/2 inch iron wheels with 1 1/2 inch roller bearings that should easily roll around with any load I'll ever put on them. I have a couple bucks each tied up in them.

So..... If I ever get around to it, I should be able to build a (or a couple/few) nice heavy duty hoists for very little money. Maybe a couple stationary and one portable?

Anyone know the load capacity for 15 foot long 12 inch I-beams with 1/2 inch web (I also have a couple with 5/8 webs) and an 18 foot 15 inch I-beam with 1/2 inch web ? I know there are charts out there somewhere, I just don't happen to have one of them.

I'll probably never come close to the load rating anyway, unless I use multiple hoists on a single beam. I have three 1/2 ton hoists, two 1 ton's, a 2 1/2 ton, and a 5 ton, but the 5 ton hoist I would need one of the smaller hoists just to get it up to the beam. I think I have 4 or 5 trolleys to pick from.

Hoarding is just so damn much fun.... You never run out of things to play around with. Although I have run out ambition recently, so a lot of it may end up going into other peoples projects instead of my own.
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