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HOW to build a wood crane (wacky projects for wacky wood burners)!

Post in 'The Gear' started by tradergordo, Nov 17, 2007.

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  1. tradergordo

    tradergordo Minister of Fire

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    Took all these pictures this morning. Because there are so many its probably easier to view this on the web page I created for the project:
    http://www.gordosoft.com/woodcrane/

    THE PROBLEM:I've got a wood pile out back, but its down a bit of a hill. I've got a deck. What's the best way to get the wood to my stove? Last year I hauled it around to the front or carried it up the steps. Then though the house, and over to the stove. First of all, this is a LOT of work. Second, if there is snow on the ground, its really easy to slip and fall on the hill. Third, its impossible to keep all the wood junk from getting all over the house.

    THE SOLUTION?
    Build a crane on the deck, and hoist the wood straight up to the window next to the stove!

    Anyone done anything similar? Feedback?

    -Gordo

    Attached Files:

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  2. oregonrider

    oregonrider Member

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    Way to go trader! American ingenuity!
  3. WarmGuy

    WarmGuy Feeling the Heat

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    Nice job. Smart to hoist up the entire cart -- I'm not sure I would have thought of that.

    I did something similar in our last house for groceries. Mine was human-powered, but after we sold the house I noticed that the new owner added an electric winch.

    It worked very well.

    Attached Files:

  4. WarmGuy

    WarmGuy Feeling the Heat

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    More important question: How do you get your wife to do the wood hauling?
  5. tradergordo

    tradergordo Minister of Fire

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    It's so easy, even a cave wife can do it!
  6. My_3_Girls

    My_3_Girls Member

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    Great idea, gordo! The only problem is that I've never heard of the 'instructable.com' website, and now I've been on there for about an hour... my wife is going to hate you!!!!
  7. kellog

    kellog New Member

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    Tradergordo,

    Really clever solution to the problem. The design is clean and very useful. I would also leave the 4x4 in there as I am sure it reduces the stress in the pipe and its mount by a bunch. My hat is off to you.
  8. DavidV

    DavidV New Member

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    applause
  9. WarmGuy

    WarmGuy Feeling the Heat

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    If you leave the cart hanging by the window, I assume you secure it so that it doesn't swing and bang the house in the wind.
  10. carpniels

    carpniels Minister of Fire

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    Sweet, your own wood elevator.

    I like it however, I am also worried about the cart banging against the siding. And if that is vinyl, then it will break real easy in the winter when it is cold.

    I am also wondering about opening the window each time a need a split. That would let too much cold air in, in my opinion.

    But please keep us informed on the progress and how well it all works. Chapeau for all the work and thinking.

    Carpniels

    PS. I have the same woodcart, but I am upgrading to Eric Johnsons model. Stay tuned.
  11. Eric Johnson

    Eric Johnson Mod Emeritus

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    Nice idea, Gordo. Really beautiful design and fabrication.

    How do you get your wife to tend the fire? Nine easy steps:

    1.) Turn off/disable the backup heat source.
    2.) Show your wife how to load wood into the appliance.
    3.) Leave a nice pile where she can easily get at it.
    4.) Get ready for work in the morning.
    5.) Kiss her goodbye and say, "If the house starts to get cold, you might want to throw some wood on the fire."
    7.) Rave about how nice and comfortable the house is when you get home.
    8.) When the utility bill comes, make a big deal about the fact that it's "zero."
    9.) (Optional, but recommended) Suggest you spend some of the savings by taking her out to dinner.
  12. tradergordo

    tradergordo Minister of Fire

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    Haha Eric, I've used ALL of those! :)

    As for the cart banging the siding - I'll have to look into that, I can probably add something to protect the siding, but so far I haven't noticed it swinging much at all. As for opening the window - doesn't seem to make much difference in the indoor temp so far anyway, maybe it will when its colder. One thing you can do to reduce the number of window openings is to just empty the cart of its contents all at once (stacking the wood somewhere near the stove but not TOO close).
  13. carpniels

    carpniels Minister of Fire

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    HI Eric, Trader,

    Nice list. I used some of them, but the big one is:" Either you work on keeping the stove going all day or all the disposable income is spent on oil, so there is no money left for food, shoes, clothes, or whatever she likes best. You pick!!!!"

    That has been my trick and it has worked fine.

    Carpniels
  14. ISeeDeadBTUs

    ISeeDeadBTUs Guest

    NOT FOR 'SENSITIVE' EYES >. . .


    Wife says: "Thanks for letting me contribute by letting me use your Baby, the new woodstove/furnaceboiler. Unfortunately, lifting that wood has me tired, so don't expect me to put out tonight. Maybe when spring gets here"

    and that's if you're fortunate. If not, combines all her skills and ruins some part of your system, knowing that you will NEVER ask her to mess with the wood again! Kinda like when we wash the dishes to get them off our back, then accidentally break some valued piece of ceramic :)
  15. eba1225

    eba1225 Feeling the Heat

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    Nice job there neighbor 'gordo,

    Glad to see that you got your wife to help, Mine can't light the fire successfully.

    erik
  16. velvetfoot

    velvetfoot Minister of Fire

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    Oh she could, if she wanted to.
    I am a totally one person operation.
    Maybe she'll put a log or two in once in a while.
  17. jklingel

    jklingel Feeling the Heat

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    [quote author="ISeeDeadBTUs" date=""]NOT FOR 'SENSITIVE' EYES >. . .


    ...Unfortunately, lifting that wood has me tired, so don't expect me to put out tonight."

    My wife just asks "How long do you want to hump your fist?" I do the work then; trust me.
  18. par38lamp

    par38lamp New Member

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    Wow, now I have seen it all. Nice going.

    I can tell you are a Harbor Freight fan, by the winch, wagon, tow strap (I have the same one) and black/yellow gloves (I have the 5 pack, too).
  19. Stevebass4

    Stevebass4 Minister of Fire

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    WOW!! very nice job!!
  20. Codeman812

    Codeman812 New Member

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    I think I see the next step for you in that set up.... some sort of enclosure at least around the window area for those super cold days. Oh and some sort of guides for the cart to ride against. LOL Seriously very nice setup and well done.
  21. tradergordo

    tradergordo Minister of Fire

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    Yea, a pre-heated air lock chamber, haha. We'll we've been as low as 15 degrees F so far this winter, and opening the window next to the stove still isn't a big deal, doesn't seem like it impacts the indoor temp much because its not open for long. I am LOVING this system compared to all the trips I was making to the wood pile last year.
  22. cmonSTART

    cmonSTART Minister of Fire

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    So, have the kids taken it for a ride yet?
  23. tradergordo

    tradergordo Minister of Fire

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    I'm sure its only a matter of time. I definitely should have filled that pole with concrete.
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