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cheap chain falls

Post in 'DIY and General non-hearth advice' started by Joful, Aug 20, 2013.

  1. Joful

    Joful Minister of Fire

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    Mar 7, 2012
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    So, my 10' x 30' equipment shed is packed full. There's no where left to go but up. I've got floor space for the big stuff, but anything that's occasional use and weighing less than a few hundred pounds needs to be hoisted the ceiling. This includes:

    Herd M12 spreader
    25 gallon towable sprayer
    42" aerator
    24" walnut harvester
    etc.

    The only two items on this list of any real weight are the Herd M12, and my aerator (which will be stored with ballast weights removed). I found that I can pretty easily hoist and store the Herd with a 3:1 purchase block and tackle, as I rigged up in the photo below. I also set up two smaller 2:1 rigs to pull the lower link attachments up to the ceiling, so it hangs horizontally. No problem... but I do worry about rope breakage, possibly due to a mouse chewing on the ropes during winter. This thing probably only weighs 100 - 200 lb., but would kill someone if landing on their head.

    I was searching for blocks, rope, safety chains, cleats, etc... when I realized some of the cheaper chain falls on the market cost less than I pay for a single block. Rather than spending a few hundred dollars to hang each machine, I could probably do the whole rig with a $30 chain fall and some spare loops of chain.

    http://amzn.com/B004I0J3KG
    http://amzn.com/B000VQEN2E

    Does anyone have any experience with these, or could you suggest another? The weight of each respective machine to be hoisted is fairly low, but with me pulling equipment in and out of this shed on a near daily basis, safety is key. My original plan was rope for hoisting, and safety chains to be installed for storage, after hoisting. May still go that route, but that will probably cost more than these chain falls.

    Thanks!

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  2. Joful

    Joful Minister of Fire

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    Keep in mind, this was just proof of concept, using some old hardware I had lying around, not a permanent rig.

    ImageUploadedByTapatalk1377006748.420626.jpg

    ImageUploadedByTapatalk1377006771.403600.jpg

    ImageUploadedByTapatalk1377006791.773751.jpg

    ImageUploadedByTapatalk1377006831.470252.jpg
  3. Bret Hart

    Bret Hart Member

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    I have one that I only use occasionally now that I have my electric hoist and rail setup. They are slow and sometimes clumsy but they do work fairly well. I'm not sure if I would want it holding weight all the time though even if it is only a few hundred pounds.

    Attached Files:

  4. Hogwildz

    Hogwildz Minister of Fire

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    Expecting those rafters to hold 100 or 200 pounds for any real length of time is expecting them to do something they were never intended to do.
    They will fail sooner or later
    Frozen Canuck and PapaDave like this.
  5. Butcher

    Butcher Minister of Fire

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    I gotta agree with Hogwildz. I'ld be thinkin about some type of shelving or somthing before you pull a rafter down.
  6. Joful

    Joful Minister of Fire

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    I don't get it. Those rafters hold snow load WAY in excess of the weight of that little spreader. What am I missing?
  7. Swedishchef

    Swedishchef Minister of Fire

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    Rafters spread the weight of the snow around (if they are engineered ones and not homemade). Hanging something on 1 square inch of rafter could weigh 300-500 may cause issues. I could completely be wrong though...

    I vote for this: http://www.liftking.ca/ $3000 and you're set!

    A
  8. Joful

    Joful Minister of Fire

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    Actually, rafter deflection as defined in the standard tables, is calculated based on deflection due to a point load at mid-span. Again, we're talking a load of less than 200 lb., shared between three 2x8 rafters, with a 10 foot span. I think anyone worried about this has not spent much time around lumber.
    Swedishchef likes this.
  9. Swedishchef

    Swedishchef Minister of Fire

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    See, I knew I was wrong.... Lol
  10. ScotO

    ScotO Guest

    Joful, I think you'd be a little better off by spreading that load over two rafters, just to be safe. Looking at where your spreader is hanging, I see a long knot in the wood right at the point it is suspended....and those knots are a weak spot.
    I like the concept, and several years ago I had my wood-hauling snowmobile hanging from my workshop rafters to change the track and jackshaft for almost a week and a half (which are homemade 2x4 "I" beams spanning 11'. The backend of that snowmobile weighs around 200lbs with the track in it. Didn't affect that rafter at all....

    100_2186.JPG 100_2180.JPG

    I guess I'm just an "overkill" kind of guy......I always overdo things. Whatever you decide, just beef it up a little.....
  11. Joful

    Joful Minister of Fire

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    Well, I could easily add flitch plates to the rafters, but I think the weak spot is their connection to the original barn wall. They're simply toe-nailed to a 2x10 that's lagged into that upper wall, with no cleat supporting them from below. However, do note that the load is currently shared by three (not two) rafters! Top link of 3-point hitch to center rafter, and the lower pins to the rafter on either side. The center rafter probably carries more than 50% of the load, while the other two share the remainder.

    edit: just realized my photos don't show it as it normally hangs. In those photos, I have it shown hanging solely from the top link on the 3-point. Normally, it's drawn up tight to the ceiling, with the yellow and second blue ropes tied to the lower link pins.
  12. lukem

    lukem Minister of Fire

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    Putting the roof load concerns aside (I'm not sure if they are valid one way or the other so I'll leave it alone) I don't think you need to put too much thought or $ into this.

    Raise them up to the desired height the cheapest way possible, then attach them to a short section of chain and D links, sling hook, whatever, then lower the load so the chain is holding the weight.

    I've yet to see a mouse chew through a chain, but they may grow them bigger in Philly.
    Joful likes this.
  13. Joful

    Joful Minister of Fire

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    Yep... that was my original plan:

    nah... our mice are tame. Ya gotta go to NYC to see the big'uns.

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