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View Full Version : Finally got my gate lift done!


Craftybigdog
02-29-2004, 08:03 PM
I spent a total of 22.00 at Lowes it was easy, before it took both hands to lift and was heavy now can be done with two fingers!:D :D :D

Craftybigdog
02-29-2004, 08:04 PM
Another one!!!!!!!!!!

Craftybigdog
02-29-2004, 08:05 PM
Another one!!!!!!!!!!!!1

Craftybigdog
02-29-2004, 08:06 PM
One more!!!!!!!!!!!

DLCS
02-29-2004, 08:11 PM
I don't see a safety cable running through that spring. Do you realize what could happen if that spring breaks?:eek:

Craftybigdog
02-29-2004, 08:14 PM
Another one!!!!!!!!!!!!!

mow2nd
02-29-2004, 08:17 PM
Hope that spring don't break.................that would hurt like a _____ .......... well it could take an eye out

ksland
02-29-2004, 08:19 PM
That is the scariest thing I have ever seen in my life. I would not go within 30 feet of that trailer. You better pull that off before someone gets seriously hurt or killed :eek:

DLCS
02-29-2004, 08:22 PM
Definately an example of what NOT to do, that is not safe.

mow2nd
02-29-2004, 08:22 PM
lol..............thats what I wanted to say....................lol

Craftybigdog
02-29-2004, 08:31 PM
You guys are killing me, how do they make them safe.

brucec32
02-29-2004, 08:38 PM
I've seen them put in a pvc tube too, for safety I assume. But if that thing broke they might find your head in one place and your torso in another. Otherwise it looks great. Just add the safety features.

Jusmowin
02-29-2004, 08:41 PM
OK, since its not right what is the safe way to make a gate lift?

specialtylc
02-29-2004, 08:42 PM
You should have copied the Ballard factory one. The spring is inside of a tube, and it stays paralell with the trailer rail. Someone on this site should have a picture they can down load for you. I dont have a picture of mine. Also Ballard uses a double spring.

mow2nd
02-29-2004, 08:44 PM
bend your knees and have somebody at the other end to help you left the gate. Just a suggestion

Craftybigdog
02-29-2004, 08:45 PM
I have some black pipe left over from snorkeling my quad so I will use that, so it will be safe!

Craftybigdog
02-29-2004, 08:46 PM
Sorry Im a one man show, everyone I have tried are lazy, want to much money, and they dont have a clue at all. So I do it all myself!

mow2nd
02-29-2004, 08:48 PM
I dont use a trailer, but I thought when you buy trailers they have left springs put on them??

All i'm saying is be careful, hate to hear about you on the news......dat bad for didness!!

Doogiegh
02-29-2004, 09:06 PM
You need to attach a safety wire from one end of the trailer, THRu the center of the spring and to another end of the trailer. This way, in case the spring is stretched far, and BREAKS, the "explosion" will not take your head off. The spring could only slid up and down along the safety wire so far and the be stopped.

Here's a pic. Notice the Junction of the safety wire being attached to the trailer:

The Lawn Boy Pro
02-29-2004, 09:07 PM
Use 1 1/2" Conduit to sheild it, and run a saftey cable through it. PVC (any kind) will shatter.

NCSULandscaper
02-29-2004, 09:18 PM
Originally posted by Jusmowin
OK, since its not right what is the safe way to make a gate lift?

Buy one that has been safety tested. If it breaks then its the companies fault, not yours. Even a safety cable running through the middle can break. It has to be fully enclosed.

gogetter
02-29-2004, 09:34 PM
Yikes! I'm afraid to ask what that is running between the spring and the gate? It almost looks like string.

I have the EZ Gate from Ballard. It has a pvc tube inside the METAL tube, plus a cable running through it. I heard that they added the pvc inner liner to stop a noise it was making.

And it's all held on with nice big bolts (that it came with).

Get a metal tube for sure, and mount it securely to the rail.

The Captain
02-29-2004, 10:00 PM
All the horror storys about broken garage door springs are true. One end of mine went through the end of my frame garage. Lucky I was outside, at the other end of the building when the door closed and the spring broke. The spring on your trailer needs to be caged in a pipe or metal conduit with capped and drilled ends, and a strong safety cable. NOT P.V.C.! That pvc will fragment like a hand granade make things a whole lot worse.

Sure gate lift assists are nice to have, but please think, work and live safety. Remember your family. They love you and they need you (in one piece).

justmjc
02-29-2004, 10:29 PM
This is mine in the pre-completed stages.

justmjc
02-29-2004, 10:34 PM
I used a 4 foot galvanized pipe threaded at both ends, courtesy of home depot for free. Iron caps on both ends, with a whole drilled in one end. The hole is chamfered to prevent fraying. Inside is a 160 pound garage door spring, mounted and supported by a 5/8" threaded rod. Also, I've drilled two holes in each end to bolt up the safety cable on the inside. The cable is clamped by 3 cable clamps at both ends to help ensure grip, tested up to over 1000 lbs. Other then the end that connects to the gate, the cable has a cover. So, visible checks once in a while on the exposed cable is really the only maintenance. That and any slack that may suddenly appear. I believe this is about the safest I might get this to be.

It is now completed, but I don't have the pics. Not too much different, but you get the idea. Works like a charm and I feel safer about this design.

Fareway Lawncare
02-29-2004, 10:46 PM
Springs encased in stainless tube...front & side gates.

justmjc
02-29-2004, 10:53 PM
Yes, you would need a tube casing, a safety cable, and also, you need more clamps in your ends, with a few inches left over. 2 per end is required, I put 3 just in case, of course depending on the spring load.

Other than those elements, I would feel completely safe with your design.:D Just messing with ya.

Where here to help protect you and your family as well.

rookiemower
02-29-2004, 11:42 PM
sorry crafty bigdog but that is just stupid. I saw frankenscagmachines like that to you need to do it like mine it has a washer welded on end to prevent blowout and the treaded rod on other does the smae thing heres a pic:eek:

STAN1366
02-29-2004, 11:47 PM
One of the best things about lawnsite is the good advice we can all get for free for someone who's been there before. I was also looking for a "gate lift assist" and didn't want to pay someone for something I could do myself. Like the others have said, enclose the spring and cable. Did you weigh the gate before you bought the springs? They look stretched out quite a bit long. I don't have a safety cable running thru my spring. Each spring is enclosed inside a 6' 2"x2" sq tubing. I used eye bolts, 4 per side. The 1st at the end farthesr from the gate doubles as the hold down for the tubing and the foward anchor for the spring. At the other end the tubing is also held down with another eyebolt, but the cable attached to the rear end of the spring runs 'thru' this eyebolt. The cable then passes thru 2 last eyebolts 2-4" from the end of the top rain just to serve as a guide. Shoud the spring break, it's contained in the square tubing by the front bolt which it;s attached to and the rear eyebolt where the cable runs thru it and then thru the last 2 guide bolts which really should be replaced with rollers. Some day I'll find them. I also doubled the cables up to add to the safety factor.
How did you come up with the sixe springs to use? I removed the gate and weighed it, then got the springs from Home Depot which came with the cables I used. 2 springs w/ cable($25), 2- 5' lenghts of 2x2 tubibg($40), plus 6 eye bolts and nuts. $70 total amd no spring under pressure exposed with a piece of angle iron just waiting to injur someone, Good luck. The most fun and satisfaction you get from doing these type projects is that you did it your self.

Royalslover
03-01-2004, 01:25 AM
Crafty, that is nice work but I agree it could be deadly. I wouldn't want to work around it either.

There is simple way to get around the whole exposed spring problem. Put a shaft under the trailer with a single torsion spring. That way if it ever breaks no one will get hurt.

EagleLandscape
03-01-2004, 01:37 AM
you had some good welds on that angle iron on the gate though

Craftybigdog
03-01-2004, 07:19 AM
Man Im trying guys its still in progress. Ill have it done soon, gonna go get some metal tubing today!

Tvov
03-01-2004, 08:02 AM
If you have left over angle iron, you can make your own safety tube. The raised bar on the ramp that the spring is attached to is different, haven't seen that before. That could make it difficult to figure out a safety tube.

X-mow
03-01-2004, 09:32 AM
Even with the spring enclosed a cable would sure hurt and maybe put out an eye if it broke. I think the torsion spring would be best .
But if any of them broke that gate could sure break some toes.

My point : let's be a little more positive (not to say safety isn't important) . He didn't post those pictures to be told how stupid he was. You can give advice without downin' the man.

barnard
03-01-2004, 09:33 AM
Crafty big dog- Nice job As forthe nay-sayers and scairdy cats go look at a spring of this type fully extended on a garage door . Ever seen one break? not much happens. CBD -a couple of suggestions. move the spring anchor point closer to the gate and you can eliminate the cable. Also consider mounting a lighter spring on both sides for more even lifting force and less stress at the gate attachment point. It may not be necessary though.your desighn places maximum lifting force when the gate is paralel to the ground unlike the commercially available lift assists.

Buckeye1
03-01-2004, 09:48 AM
Looks like an Eric Elm design to me.

Was everyone this hard on Eric when he posted his pictures?

X-mow
03-01-2004, 09:51 AM
That's what i'm sayyin

MOturkey
03-01-2004, 09:55 AM
I admire you guys who are able to fabricate whatever you need rather than running to the store. I couldn't build a rabbit trap if my life depended upon it. I think it runs in my family. When I was a kid, my Dad's entire tool kit consisted of a hammer, screw driver, and pair of pliers.

That said, I'm all for saving money where it can be saved, but commercial trailer lifts are available for under $200, and when you consider the time and effort plus the quoted material costs, then factor the possible safety factor, is it really worth it? I'll bet some of you who have built your own wouldn't bat an eye over paying ten grand for a new mower. Just my opinion, for what little it is worth. Neill

LawnMower
03-01-2004, 10:29 AM
I started a thread on this very subject last week. I was wondering if I should build one or by one from a magazine.

Click here to see the Thread (http://www.lawnsite.com/showthread.php?s=&threadid=63360)

DLCS
03-01-2004, 11:01 AM
Originally posted by Buckeye1
Looks like an Eric Elm design to me.

Was everyone this hard on Eric when he posted his pictures?


Whats that have to do with it? My point is that if that spring breaks it can cause some serious injury. How would you feel if that spring broke at a customers house and injured a passerby. Do you think you might get sued? The reason companies manufacture these gate lifts with the spring enclosed in a tube is for safety concerns. I would atleast run a cable through the center of the spring to keep it from going to far. I'm just trying to save the guy some grief later on.

NCSULandscaper
03-01-2004, 11:39 AM
Originally posted by X-mow

My point : let's be a little more positive (not to say safety isn't important) . He didn't post those pictures to be told how stupid he was. You can give advice without downin' the man.

Exactly where in this entire thread did we say that he was stupid? He posted pics and we pointed out the faults in the design. Thats what happens when you make pictures public, you are open to critisism.

"Nice job As forthe nay-sayers and scairdy cats go look at a spring of this type fully extended on a garage door . Ever seen one break? not much happens."

Are you kidding me?? I hope that was a joke.

Craftybigdog
03-01-2004, 02:32 PM
Alright spring is contained!

Craftybigdog
03-01-2004, 02:33 PM
Another!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Craftybigdog
03-01-2004, 02:35 PM
Last one!!!!!! Thanks guys for your inputs!

DLCS
03-01-2004, 02:37 PM
I like it, much safer. What did you use for tubing?

Craftybigdog
03-01-2004, 02:45 PM
2 inch black PVC tubing this stuff is real thick so if the spring did let go I really think it would contain it. I didnt max out the spring so it should be fine!

Royalslover
03-01-2004, 02:56 PM
Crafty, you probably feel hen pecked on this thread, and I'm no engineer, but I would think that if that spring broke it would blow that tubing to smitherines. Is there any way You could use steel tubing?

topher924
03-01-2004, 03:32 PM
I WAS CONSIDERING USING CRAFTYBIGDOGS DESIGN WITH A FENCE POST OVER THE PVC. THOUGHTS?

Royalslover
03-01-2004, 03:39 PM
What do you mean"use a fencepost"?

Craftybigdog
03-01-2004, 03:44 PM
I think he is talking like a sign post. I have it set up that the spring is not really stretched that much. This is not a heavy duty spring, at all. So if it did break I believe it would stay contained, so no worrys mate!

hboyd_com
03-01-2004, 03:59 PM
A plastic tube is probably not enough. I've had garage door spring break and completely bend the metal tracks on the door.

I've had two break with safety cables and while they made a hell of a noise, there was no damage done.

The potential for damage or INJURY is not worth it.

topher924
03-01-2004, 04:00 PM
IM TALKING ABOUT A CHAIN LINK FENCE POST LOOKING I WAS LOOKING AROUND AT LOWES SATURDAY PICK UP ON AND IT LOOKED PERFECT I WAS EVEN GOING TO GET THE CAP AND PUT ON BOTH ENDS TO KEEP THE SPRING CONTAINED JUST IN CASE WORSE COMES TO WORSE

Tvov
03-01-2004, 05:13 PM
Originally posted by Craftybigdog
Alright spring is contained!

looks pretty good! The pulley in front of the spring seems to take care of what I was talking about with the arm on the ramp. And...that arm probably gives you a little more lift from the spring.

I don't think anyone here was being nasty, just safe. Garage door springs break, and when they do, it can be impressive.

Expert Lawns
03-01-2004, 05:26 PM
I like your four legged security gaurd

specialtylc
03-01-2004, 06:03 PM
That PVC will hold up just fine Crafty. The Ballard one I have on my trailer is made out of maybe 22 ga. stainless tubing . you wont kill nobody.

X-mow
03-01-2004, 07:08 PM
Originally posted by rookiemower
sorry crafty bigdog but that is just stupid . I saw frankenscagmachines like that to you need to do it like mine it has a washer welded on end to prevent blowout and the treaded rod on other does the smae thing heres a

Page 2 of the forum NCSULandscaper how many people need to chew the guy up. He doesn't seem to be bothered by it but I think the critisism is gettin rediculous.

X-mow
03-01-2004, 07:09 PM
Originally posted by rookiemower
sorry crafty bigdog but that is just stupid . I saw frankenscagmachines like that to you need to do it like mine it has a washer welded on end to prevent blowout and the treaded rod on other does the smae thing heres a [/B]

Page 2 of the forum NCSULandscaper. How many people need to chew the guy up. He doesn't seem to be bothered by it but I think the critisism is gettin rediculous.

NCSULandscaper
03-01-2004, 07:14 PM
Once again we never said HE was stupid. Seems to know what he is doing, just the design needed help, which he fixed, so now its all good.

X-mow
03-01-2004, 07:15 PM
If the bolts inside the tube are blocking the end caps then why won't the PVC work. It's not like the spring is going to explode.

X-mow
03-01-2004, 07:21 PM
Yeah we don't want to argue about such trivialities.:rolleyes: :D

cantoo
03-01-2004, 08:34 PM
Craftybigdog, I can't tell for sure but is that dog spayed or neutered? It could get out and do some serious damage what if a customer was walking by? I would put a steel pipe over it right away and maybe a extra chain wouldn't hurt either.

Looks good (other that the galvanized eye bolt you used, it looks a little small and the stress on it sideways will likely cause it to break) I need to make a couple soon too.

Craftybigdog
03-01-2004, 08:54 PM
What I think I will do is encase it in a titanium case and I have some 25000lb chain and that will tie into the lift bar on the gate. Also I will put up some signs saying aproach at your own risk! You guys are hilarious, I fly all over this world and just recently flew that C-5 that got its Number 4 engine blown up well I flew it out of bagdad on 3 engines in the middle of the night doing a low level. So anything that is said here or anywhere else I take with a grain of salt. I do listen to the positive comments though, thanks alot!

lawnman_scott
03-01-2004, 09:00 PM
Originally posted by Craftybigdog
What I think I will do is encase it in a titanium case and I have some 25000lb chain and that will tie into the lift bar on the gate. Also I will put up some signs saying aproach at your own risk! You guys are hilarious, I fly all over this world and just recently flew that C-5 that got its Number 4 engine blown up well I flew it out of bagdad on 3 engines in the middle of the night doing a low level. So anything that is said here or anywhere else I take with a grain of salt. I do listen to the positive comments though, thanks alot!
Just make sure you attach that 25000 lb chain good or it wont help you. Personally I would go with the 50000 lb chain.

cantoo
03-01-2004, 09:05 PM
Craftybigdog, what size of hook are you going to ue on that 50000lb chain? It's going to have to be pretty heavy to take the weight. You might also want to add a couple of more axles to your trailer. What size of tires are those? They aren't Firestone are they?
Some guys just never learn. You can never be too safe..
PS do you smoke, I just heard some bad things about cigarettes?

Royalslover
03-01-2004, 11:59 PM
Originally posted by cantoo
Craftybigdog, what size of hook are you going to ue on that 50000lb chain? It's going to have to be pretty heavy to take the weight. You might also want to add a couple of more axles to your trailer. What size of tires are those? They aren't Firestone are they?
Some guys just never learn. You can never be too safe..
PS do you smoke, I just heard some bad things about cigarettes?



Well said cantoo. Crafty probably feels like the husband of a badgering wife after this thread.

Crafty, I forgot you're the C-5 guy. What do you do on the gal?
Both times I 've watched one take off there was a guy sticking his head out the top on taxiing. Is that procedure or is he just enjoying the view?

MOW ED
03-02-2004, 06:38 AM
We need to get back onto the lawns.

I am not asking for a safety review on this but I will tell you my experience. I have used a design from my friend Eric ELM for the last 6 years. I met Eric for breakfast one day and saw this gate assist on his trailer. I had the same concerns that many of you did so I asked Eric about it. He said that he had been using this for years and never had a spring failure. That was good enough for me so I tried it and you know what? He was right. I change the spring every 2 years even though I really don't have to. I feel that 12 bucks isn't too bad. I have never had a failure.
He was concerned about safety. Since forum rules prohibit me from posting a link to another site I will just say that Erics site has instructions for building the gate assist there. He also stresses using the correct hardware for safety reasons.

That being said, it is nice to see everyones concern and we should leave it at that. No one wants to get hurt. We want to work smart and make money. Keep safety in mind and do what you can to lessen the risk. Good Luck

The Lawn Boy Pro
03-04-2004, 01:08 PM
Originally posted by rookiemower
Sorry crafty bigdog but that is just stupid. I saw frankenscagmachines like that too. You need to do it like mine. It has a washer welded on end to prevent blowout, and the treaded rod on other end. It does the same thing. Here's a pic:eek:

Yeah, ya'll remember FrankenScags gate lift? Looks REALLY safe dont it?

rookiemower
03-04-2004, 01:49 PM
thank you NCSU landscaper, mow-x i was not calling him stupid, just taking that risk is stupid. Can anyone say lawsuit!

Craftybigdog nice job on the modification that PVC should do just fine i hope no offense was taken to the earlier response
Bill

TreffertLawnWrx
03-04-2004, 02:17 PM
I was going to say great looking harlequin! I have a 1-1/2 Mantle!

LawnMower
03-04-2004, 02:34 PM
theres some good pictures on this thread too. I down loaded a lot of them to figure what I wanted to build.

By the way, you may have to scroll down till you find the good pictures. Some of the assists arent good. The good ones are in the middle of the thread.

click here (http://www.lawnsite.com/showthread.php?s=&threadid=48815&highlight=tailgate)

LawnMower
03-04-2004, 02:39 PM
Heres another thread with some good pictures of safe assists.

. Just keep scrolling till you find the good ones.

click here (http://www.lawnsite.com/showthread.php?s=&threadid=34128&highlight=tailgate)