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He Built His Own Electric Shop Lift
After building a new shop three years ago, Larry Zimbelmann needed an easier way to get up to his parts storage area which is 10 ft. above floor level. So the Milford, Neb., farmer decided to build an elevator.
  The elevator cage measures 40 by 45 in. and runs up and down on two 20-ft. lengths of channel iron mounted about 1 ft. out from the wall. Adjustable rollers guide the cage along three sides of each channel iron. Power is provided by a 1/2 hp electric gear motor connected by chain and sprockets to a drum with cable that lifts the cage. There's a safety switch at the top, and a 200-lb. counterweight that gives the elevator a 700-lb. lift capacity.
  "It takes up less space than stairs and works fast," says Zimbelmann. "The cage is big enough that I can load tools and other parts and equipment on it."
  A big 25-tooth sprocket and a smaller 15-tooth dia. sprocket serve as the gear reduction drive for a cross shaft at the top of the frame. A spool with 3/8-in. winch cable raises and lowers the lift. The elevator is equipped with a spring-loaded brake that applies or releases pressure on the cross shaft via a solenoid wired into the electric motor.
  The elevator is operated from a waist-high, push-button control arm.
  "I looked at a lot of commercial elevator hoists and winches before I built it and discovered that most of them go too slow for my needs. With most commercial elevators, it takes 30 seconds to go up 10 ft., but with mine it takes only 11 seconds," says Zimbelmann.
  "I use the loft area to store small parts for my tractors and other machinery that would otherwise get in the way on the shop floor."
  Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Larry Zimbelmann, 2337 Superior Rd., Milford, Neb. 68405 (ph 402 643-2310 or 402 643-0138).

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2003 - Volume #27, Issue #1