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Old 08-30-2008, 10:10 PM   #1
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Heavy Attic Hatch Door Needs a Lift


I have an insulated attic hatch that is enclosed and covered by a hinged plywood door covered with rigid foam board (about 5 x 2.5 feet) which weighs about 15 pounds. Of course, the door is laid flat over the hatch and it's kind of heavy to lift it when going into the attic or pulling it down when leaving the attic. I trying to figure out a way to make it easier to lift and close, and I'm looking for ideas.

One thought I've had is to use a bungee cord or elastic tie down hooked to the door and the rafters about eight feet above it in the attic. But I guess then the door would stay open while I was in the attic.

Another thought is to create some kind of pulley and counterweight system, but I don't know how to do that.

Any other ideas?
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Old 08-31-2008, 08:44 AM   #2
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Heavy Attic Hatch Door Needs a Lift


I would go the simple route first and put a pulley above. Attach one end of a cord to the door and put a bucket on the other end.

That way you can add/remove weight to the bucket til you get to the counter balance point where the door opens and closes with minimal effort.

Or hit the auto junkyard and get a couple of lift assist tubes and brackets like what are used on van hatches.
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Old 08-31-2008, 08:57 AM   #3
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Heavy Attic Hatch Door Needs a Lift


here is another thought! You could also get some old window sash weights and some sash cords or sash chain. I would start by fastening the rope or chain on the handle side and then keep moving the point of attachment towards the hinge side until the door sits right when closed.
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Old 08-31-2008, 09:49 PM   #4
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Heavy Attic Hatch Door Needs a Lift


Thanks a million! Your pulley and bucket system worked great, on the first try. It just took 10 pounds of weight (I put a barbell weight in the bucket) to do the trick. It really takes the work out of opening and closing the hatch door. I tried 15 pounds, but that was too much. I guess I don't need the bucket anymore -- I could just tie the barbell weight on the end of the rope, or anything else that happens to weigh 10 pounds.
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Old 09-01-2008, 09:07 AM   #5
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Heavy Attic Hatch Door Needs a Lift


Glad it worked out!
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Old 09-01-2008, 08:17 PM   #6
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Heavy Attic Hatch Door Needs a Lift


On a home reno TV show that I was watching yesterday, someone had installed a teeter-totter arrangement on the attic hatch.
One end was connected to the door and a counter weight was at the other.
This would better if head room was restricted!
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