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  • Fred

I Built a Crane...sort of

So, part of my vision for the workshop that I keep talking about includes a dust collection system. This is necessary for a woodworking shop if you don't want to be dragging a shop-vac all over the place to collect sawdust. Plus, shop-vacs are small and have to be emptied a lot for this kind of work and they just don't have the power necessary for full-sized equipment.

Dust collectors are large and noisy and dusty. Go figure. So, I decided that I'm going to install the dust collector behind the workshop in its very own lean-to shelter. The first step for this is to make a foundation for the shelter. That's the area on the left.

Oh, by the way, I'm going to be installing an mini-split HVAC system in the shop so that I can work year round. The small concrete slab on the right is a leftover from the previous owners (actually, I think from the first owner) that was just sitting out behind the shop. It's just the right size for a mini-split system, but it needs to be moved and leveled.

So, I built a crane. Sort of. I took some stuff that I had and built a crane and I have to say that it worked pretty well. What you're looking at is a 1000 lb capacity scaffold from Lowe's that I bought to remodel a house last year. I drilled a couple of holes in the deck to allow me to slip a chain through. Between these holes, I placed a beam made of two married 2x4s. The chain goes over the beam and through the holes. To that, I connected a Harbor Freight 1000 lb manual hoist.

I used some 1000 lb straps to sling my concrete slab (my math told me that it weighs around 800 lbs based on the perceived volume and the weight of concrete). So, the math was on my side. I leveled the "crane" with concrete pavers and hoisted away.


This is one of many, many steps toward meeting my vision for the workshop. If I just keep doing one step at a time, it will get there. Eventually.

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