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DangerMouse 10-24-2008 06:23 AM

can you build your own drywall lift?....done!
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they said it was crazy, they said it couldn't be done! but i love a challenge...kinda like the guy who wanted to build his own dc motor! but for me it was a matter of "necessity is the mother, etc." i needed a lift now, and next year as the rest of the house goes up. this will unscrew down to 3 or 4 pieces i can store until needed again, and disassemble and re-use parts when done! parts list: 10 or 11 8' 2x4s, 12 door hinges, some rope, 2 block pulleys, 4 wheels, and some steel pipe. if anyone wants to try to build one, (as if) i'll be glad to help if i can. just goes to show, where there's a will and a need.....


Clutchcargo 10-24-2008 07:59 AM

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Nice Job. Is this pic before the wheels were attached or am I just not seeing them?

DangerMouse 10-24-2008 08:22 AM

i didn't have the wheels on it in that pic, no. it just 'scooted' across the floor to do that sheet. will add wheels today though. it'll allow easier positioning. to see how NOT to build one, see: -=chuckle=- boy, was THAT design a flop! i got the idea from a card/coffee table we own. see most episodes of 'I Love Lucy' to see what it is exactly. it lifts up from coffee table (with side leaves down) to a square card table. but it stays level going up and down with the center 'Y' support. i simply changed the design to fit my needs. force centered on both ends pulling the middle forces the center support up, lifting the sheet. drawback #1 to me is the 10' footprint when set down to load. the platform struts act as a 'stop' to keep the platform sturdy. lifting it is still a bit wobbly, but once up there, the joists hold it more stable. it loads at 4 feet off the ground, then lifts from there. will take a pic later this morning in the 'down' position. the crank simply slides in and out of the holes to lock it in position. pull to turn, push in to catch the handle on the sides and lock.


aaron.klimchuk 10-24-2008 08:39 AM

I was going to ask the same question about the wheels. Great job, I love taking the initiative in figuring out how something works and then duplicating or improving it.

rjordan392 10-24-2008 09:10 AM

Real nice. But with some more refinements to make it more steady; do you think it could compete well against commercial lifts. I am thinking you got something there that may be worth more then the time and materials you spent building it.
I am also thinking about the ease and speed of disassembly and assembly on the jobsite to go from room to room. You might want to think about protecting your design or do what some inventors do and that is to contact those businesses that do all the legwork from getting a patent through having it manufactured. Something like your design should certainly interest diy homeowners and contractors. Again, nice job.

DangerMouse 10-24-2008 09:21 AM

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any ideas to help steady it would be greatly appreciated! thanks for the compliments!


time involved = free
materials = under $50 IF purchased. ( i had most of it laying around anyways. had to buy 4 more hinges is all )
giving away an idea to help other DIYers = priceless

that being said, here's the pic of it in the 'down/loading' position. ignore the dog....
"I" try to, but she follows me everywhere.....


DangerMouse 10-24-2008 10:00 AM

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we just raised another piece and i thought it might help if i shot some closeups of the main center support mount and how the crank locks.


rjordan392 10-24-2008 10:11 AM

I spent a few moments to try to come up with something to steady it more and could not. Maybe a drywall installer could help. But considering the cost to build one vs purchasing a commercial type lift puts one way ahead. It also allows one person to install a ceiling and that alone will make a contractor interested.
I installed a 7 foot ceiling by myself with the use of a 6 foot step ladder and a home made wedge made of a 2 x 4 and a piece of plywood. I would lay the sheet against the ladder and with the wedge close by, lift the sheet up and then grab the wedge and gently wedge the sheet enough to keep it in place. The other end of the sheet would now be resting on top of the ladder. I would secure that end first. Now how I was able to do that without breaking a part of the sheet is something I don't remember. Your design makes it so much easier. Now if I were a drywall contractor, I would certainly contact you for plans. Some designs may have their limits on steadyness but if one makes sure the sheet is balance and if one is careful using the lift, then I do not see a problem. Good luck with your invention.

DangerMouse 10-24-2008 10:21 AM

i think if i add 4 more cross supports on the inside of the top four runners like i did on the bottoms it'll help alot. what ya think?
wheels may not be necessary for adjustments, but it would come DOWN smoother WITH them. so they are next.


rjordan392 10-24-2008 10:46 AM

Yes, I think that will help. Placing them 8 to 12 inches away from the hinges might do the trick. But if the distance between runners is off, then it may cause unwanted stress on the hinges when you tighten the supports to the runners. Then again, if you cut the supports to exact dimensions, then you may not have to worry about it.

shumakerscott 10-24-2008 10:46 AM

Great job
I must give you a big thumbs up on this:thumbsup:. I was thinking about a cable winch, like to pull a boat on to a trailer. Would that work? Great job, Dorf Dude

DangerMouse 10-24-2008 11:04 AM


Originally Posted by rjordan392 (Post 176222)
Then again, if you cut the supports to exact dimensions, then you may not have to worry about it.

i did, in fact, i did most measurements in 2, 4 and 6 foot increments to "KISS"
only the center upright and the two connected 'pushers' are 53" and 2x62"
12" for the crank supports. made it easier, for sure.
cleared next area, time to lift another sheet! woohoo!
(but first, the wheels)


DangerMouse 10-24-2008 06:13 PM

wow.... wheels helped more than i expected! easier to roll piece around to fit area and much easier coming down!


joasis 10-26-2008 05:03 AM

I applaud you for the project. Now, if it could do what our BilJax style lifts could do, you would have a plan to market and sell. For what it appears you are doing, it should work great.

DangerMouse 10-26-2008 05:12 AM

yup, for flat ceilings, it's fine. anything else.... well...... that's another upgrade. heh heh thanks!


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