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Old 10-14-2008, 04:30 PM   #1
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drywall lifter - max height


I have a vaulted ceiling - currently insulating - I'll be looking at drywall over the winter - thinking of buying / renting a drywall lift (some of you pro's might call me a wimp - my tired old back says otherwise...)

Will a lift run high enough to reach the peak (approx 14') with the top edge, and drywall sheet angled for approx 3 / 4 pitch?

Any recommendations on what to look for in a lift (I've seen some really cheap units at one of the local tool stores, but they sell a lot of junk - do not want this crashing down on me - still I'm hoping I don't have to spend a fortune to get something decent...)

I'm thinking that renting a lift may be just as $ as I won't get this done in a weekend - may take a few visits to the site to hang all the boards

Any thoughts appreciated

-Randy


Last edited by rtoni; 10-14-2008 at 04:34 PM. Reason: can't spell
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Old 10-14-2008, 05:29 PM   #2
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drywall lifter - max height


max hight on a lift is 14 feet with the extension bar .I recently got one brand new in the box off of ebay for 140.00 and that was with shipping thats less then two weekend rentals good luck

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Old 10-14-2008, 05:54 PM   #3
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I have never personally used one....I'm sure they're worth their weight in gold to people who use them and have found a good one. I have considered one as I hit my mid-50's this year and don't do nearly the amount of large jobs (requiring hired help) as I used to. There are still times one man can't hang alone. Being someone who believes you "get what you pay for" when it comes to tools, I don't buy cheap if it's an item that can cause me physical harm if it fails! I've seen lifts advertised that will reach 15' (I believe) with an optional extension. Some may come with the extension. They're all over EBay. I would thoroughly research and get feedback on any "cheap" unit I was considering. Even if this is a one time use for you and maybe you can get a "decent" unit for $250 -$300, what happens if a cable breaks in the middle of the job?? Best case scenario.......nobody hurt, broken piece of drywall when it hits the floor, work out warranty repair, time delay. Worst case scenario........board comes down on top of you, knocks you off "platform" you're standing on, call 911...........Not trying to discourage you, but PLEASE be careful thinking this is the "Holy Grail" of drywall hanging (especially on a vault). Renting may be the best option if you're determined to hang it yourself. Might be worth looking into just paying someone to hang it for you and do your own finishing. Figure the price of buying/renting a lift, it may be a "wash". Best of luck, and be safe.
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Old 10-14-2008, 05:59 PM   #4
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They're cheaper than I thought.....according to clasact. May be worth it for occasional use. Again, just be careful!
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Old 10-14-2008, 06:59 PM   #5
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I am not a pro so I dont need one for everyday just my owne home but when I got it I did some checking and got it off a drywall suppy in FLA. and it is the same as they sell here localy for around 450-500 so I think I got a good deal and considering the rental place wanted 120.00 for the weekend welllllllllllllllllllllll.If you look around on some of these selling web sites you can find a deal and save some bucks but for the average DIYer its all about saveing money and trying to do the job right
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Old 10-15-2008, 08:20 AM   #6
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$120.00 for the weekend - OUCH! Agreed you can find them pretty cheap on the net, just wanted to point out the possible downsides. I've seriously been toying with the idea of getting one. 3 or 4 sheets on a ceiling repair make it kind of hard to justify a helper for a day if you can do it yourself and charge the customer less.....especially in this economy. I would think the drawback would be trying to use it in a small area and having enough room to maneuver, say a 5' x 8' bathroom.
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Old 10-15-2008, 11:00 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bjbatlanta View Post
$120.00 for the weekend - OUCH!
yeah - that's the reaction I get to some rental fees - often the only payback to renting is if you can do the job in a day - which will not be the case if I do this myself (would rather take a month of weekends and go slow - I hear you on the safety thing). So renting is not really an option.

what would be a reasonable average (not looking for a quote, just a sanity check) to hang about 650 sq feet vaulted, approx 20 sheets, no finishing? I imagine a crew could wrap this up in a day...? Watched the pro's work on "normal" ceilings and walls - pretty amazing how fast they can go there...
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Old 10-15-2008, 12:04 PM   #8
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Hard to say really. Different rates in different parts of the country. Is everything out of the way allowing to roll a scaffold easily? All framing and deadwood up to par? Ceiling only, right? Sight unseen, with you furnishing the material and IF everything was ready, around $500.00 labor. Myself and another hanger...... less than a day. I could throw a coat of tape in too and still be less than 8 hrs. (And I'd furnish my own scaffolding.) Would need to be within 30 min. or so driving time also. If you could find some hangers working on a house nearby, you could probably get them to do it on a Saturday for around $350.00 if you have scaffolding on the site. Three man crew (one on ground, two on scaffold should be able to hang it in less than 4 hrs.). Again, hard to pin down a price without seeing the job.
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Old 10-15-2008, 01:18 PM   #9
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Again, hard to pin down a price without seeing the job.
no worries - that's all good info - gives me a decent idea

just an fyi - I do have some 4"x8" bottom chords tying the top walls together at top plate at 4' intervals - these will eventually be trimmed / turned into "fake" exposed / box beams once the drywall is up - that would probably make you curse a bit (and make the $ go up ) if the scaffolding does not clear the underside (or the scaffold would have to max out at just under 8' - which I think is not the case, from what I've rented anyway). But - I've been using these "beams" as scaffolding (a few 2x12's running perpendicular across the them makes a nice working platform - that's how I'm doing the insulating right now)

otherwise its a wide open floor space (except for all the crap I drop down there while I'm working ) and I think the framing is overkill if anything.

anyway, i got a better idea on the options now - thanks again to you and clasact all for the info - really helps
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Old 10-20-2008, 01:44 PM   #10
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remodeling where I'm doing all the work, and we're living in the house. Because of that I'm moving through the house working section by section. I bought a lift new for $180 off craigslist. Call me a wimp or whatever, but I am a fan of the lift. Except for the 54"x12' x 5/8" pieces I basically hung the house by myself. It's nice not having to be tied to the rental schedule. When I was done with it, I traded the use of the lift for the use of a buddy's flooring stapler. When he's done with it, back on craigslist it goes to recoup whatever residual value is possible.

As for the quality, it was ok (better than I expected). The support for one of the wheels was welded on slightly skewed, so the one caster wheel did not roll as well as the other two. You get what you pay for, but for one job it was a good deal for me.
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Old 10-20-2008, 03:05 PM   #11
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thanks Steve1234 - that's what I'm thinking - after this job it'll get recycled. What I've seen from looking around is that a lot of the cheaper 'brands" out there on-line appear to be the identical unit shipped out of China. A local tool shop sells one that will do what I need in the same ballpark (@ $200)

Do you recall the make /model of the unit you bought?

What scares me is when I compare the professional units to the low end ones on the web - but like you said you get what you pay for. I don't care if it only lasts the one job - as long as it doesn't fall apart when I got a sheet hanging 12 feet in the air . Would like to look at the model you got based on your overall satisfaction - good to know it did the job for you

thanks
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Old 10-20-2008, 04:37 PM   #12
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I don't know what the brand is, and I don't recall seeing any type of labeling on the unit. The box and instructions are long gone. I would say it was one of those cheap China versions.

There is a place about 1-1/2 hour drive from my house that sells all types of lifts and industrial stuff. I think it was something like Broadway lifts..?? The guy advertises on Craigslist every once in a while with these lifts. When I bought it he said he gets them in every so often and he sells them right away. I just remember the instructions being humorous in that there is some funny Chinese to English translation going on.

It appeared quite sturdy. I checked the main cable often, along with the crank braking mechanism. Other than the one wheel alignment thing, it held up and worked ok. I would not suggest the cheap version if you were going to use it to make a living. I also made sure nobody (except me) was standing under it when it was in use.
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Old 10-20-2008, 04:43 PM   #13
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Actually, I just checked and he is currently advertising. In case the ad expires, broadwaylifts is the name of the place in San Pablo, CA

http://sfbay.craigslist.org/eby/tls/879624407.html
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Old 10-20-2008, 04:54 PM   #14
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thanks again Steve1234 - just went to the link and the pic is exactly like some units on line selling as Platinum, Troy, Wasp, King, etc. Man they must be importing thousands of these things. Check out the links...

http://www.northerntool.com/webapp/w...70_40716_40716

http://www.amazon.com/Troy-Drywall-L.../dp/B000J5QIPC

http://www.kingcanada.com/Products.htm?CD=509

http://www.tooltown.ca/11-Drywall-Pa...st-p-8836.html

glad to know you had pretty good luck with the unit - guess it's just a matter of finding the best $ since they all appear to be sourced from same place

thanks again for the feedback
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Old 10-20-2008, 05:49 PM   #15
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For the record steve1234, I wouldn't consider anyone a "wimp" for using whatever means at hand to make hanging easier. Having had neck, back, and 2 shoulder surgeries (not all completely attributed to drywall work, but it didn't help matters) I can testify that 35 yrs. in the trade takes a toll. "Weekend warriors" need to take advantage of any helpful tools available. I just recommend the type of caution you expressed when it comes to using something like a drywall lift that can get you hurt if inferior parts come into play. I'm like anybody else trying to save a buck......just be sure safety isn't an issue. And like I said earlier, I'm considering purchasing one myself for the small stuff.

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