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Home Elevator Made From Forklift
Jack Michael was 90 on his last birthday but doesn’t show any signs of slowing down. He still keeps his 3 restored vintage autos in tip-top shape and occasionally builds something special for his home. Michael has been a long-time FARM SHOW reader and reently copied one of the ideas he read about to build a home elevator made from forklift components.
  “My wife and I made an agreement several years ago that if either one of us needed special care, the other person would try their best to provide it at home,” Michael says. “Not long after that she had a stroke and was paralyzed on her right side and lost most of her ability to speak.”
  Michael needed to be able to move his wife in her wheelchair from the lower level garage up to their home’s main floor about 10 ft. up, so he built the elevator to handle the job.   
  “I knew those walk-behind forklifts can raise about 10 ft. in the air and lift several hundred pounds, so I found a good used one,” says Michael. He positioned the lift in the lower level of his house and removed the rolling mechanisms so the machine is stationary. Then he built a rectangular-shaped elevator “car” about 5 ft. by 8 ft. and mounted it on the forks. The forks raise the car up and through an opening in the floor of their house.
  Michael uses two, 12-volt deep cycle batteries to raise and lower the lift. He hooked up starter switches in the elevator’s bi-fold doors, so when the doors are closed at either level the starter switches are activated. The lift stops when it touches a starter switch at the top when it’s raised or on the garage floor when it’s lowered. Michael says the motor that raises and lowers the car is about the size of a car starter. He says it has enough power to lift 5 guys that weigh about 200 lbs. each, which is more than enough for his needs.
  “Once I got the idea for the elevator in my mind it took me about 30 days to build. There wasn’t a lot of cost to it, and the finished lift works as good as pockets in a pair of pants,” says Michael.
   Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Jack Michael, P.O. Box 155, Ohlman, Ill. 62076 (ph 217 563-2215).

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2015 - Volume #39, Issue #4