“WHAT THE HECK? YOU COULD HAVE TAKEN THE SHINGLES UP FOR FREE, OR HAD THEM DELIVERED FOR $75.”
True! But that was not the point, for a couple of different reasons. First and foremost, Dan and I are engineers. We love to design and build stuff. For us, this is not work, it’s a fun project. However, Dan had additional plans for this “elevator” – When done with the roofing task, he disassembled it, moved it to his 2-story barn, made a few design changes and re-assembled it where it now serves as a freight elevator. $400 well spent!
Also, we want to thank all the folks who have pointed out errors in the design. Dan and I have researched those and incorporated the improvements during reassembly in his barn.
ADDENDUM: For those who ask to see the top of the elevator for the pulley system that was not shown in the video, here is a small series of basic CAD drawings for you to ponder. No additional information will be provided. Use this as you see fit at your own risk: http://www.preyerplanning.com/elevator-ideas-01.pdf
NOW BACK TO THE REGULARLY SCHEDULED EXPLANATION
The video describes why a friend of mine built this elevator. It does not, however, explain why I am so interested in it…
For several years, I have wanted a freight elevator from my garage up to my house. I even designed an elevator shaft into a house re-model that we did a few years ago. Unfortunately, we could not afford the elevator at that time, so we placed a floor in between levels and had “stacked closets” which we used for storage.
NOTE: At the time, a real elevator designed for a house would be about $50,000. We later decided we’d have to settle for a vertical platform lift. It would not be fancy, but it would only cost about $15,000 for parts and installation. Still, I was not quite ready to spend that money. Too many other things seemed more important.
Then my friend and colleague built this elevator to lift shingles onto his roof. It cost him about $400 and an afternoon of labor. I wanted IN ON THIS!!
With some design modifications and improvements, he is designing for me a variant of this elevator that will be custom fit into my elevator shaft. I will finally have the freight elevator that I’ve been wanting, and it will cost just over $1,000.
UPDATE REGARDING MY UPCOMING GARAGE ELEVATOR: We have already prepared the shaft and started preliminary installation of components common to the shaft walls. Although this is being designed as a freight elevator, it can easily carry people. Therefore, Dan is designing a number of safety elements into it. Due to that, the cost will increase to about twice the original $1,000 estimate, but I approved it. Theoretically, it should cost far more than that, but Dan is able do most of his own fabrication work (mill, lathe, weld). The main safety device that Dan designed is based on whether or not there is tension on the cables. Anything that releases tension, such as a broken cable, will immediately activate spring loaded actuators underneath the elevator car floor that will shoot hardened steel catches out into the slots of machined steel tracks mounted on the sides of the elevator shaft. There will also be a trap door at the top of the car for an emergency exit. At some point in the future when the work is all done, I will be releasing a video of that task.
ELEVATOR MUSIC provided “Royalty Free” by Benjamin Tissot.
Track = “Straight”