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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Started taking pictures well after id started on this....

I am stuck for space, I dont have a huge garage, and I dont have spare £300 for a hydraulic bike lift that will take up all the floorspace I have left.

What I do have is a few good lengths of 25x50x3mm rectangle box section, some spare cable tray, a stick welder, spare time and a need to get all filthy and oily!

The basic frame is an open ended rectangle with a full rectangle that will fit inside, with enough clearance to get the legs on.



All the pivots must line up, and be the same distance apart, so the top rails must match the bottom rails and the legs must all match
each other.

Forgive my scruffy looking welding, but this is how the pivots were made


One captive nut on each side of rail, or leg.
If i had to do this again, i would make a jig for getting all these dead-on as i had to cut a couple off and shuffle them over and re-weld



They need to be somewhere near the end of the rail, If i had more faith in my welding then I would have got them right on the end, and removed the need to raise the lower frame off the floor, making the ramp about 50mm lower than it is now.




The top is just cable tray, but there is another rail that runs right down the centre of the ramp to stop it bending in over. Its galvanised so it didnt weld very well, after a few tries I gave up and used dome headed roofing bolts to attatch it.



The REAR end of the ramp had a wide rail on, level with the support rails ( so you can drive over it ) but you can only do this at the rear for two reasons.



Firstly you have to ride over it, and secondly this happens if the ramp tries to lower in the oppssite direction



The front rail must be welded ON TOP of the ramp, so it is above the upper support frame, like so



joint cleaned up



Not a bad weld, its getting better, the slag peeled itself



after a wire bursh you can see, im still practising so the bead width isnt very even, but we have penetration and the gap is filled so i declare that peice stuck!





Next we need some eyes on the wider rails, for ratchet straps



and you can see now why the front rail should be above the upper frame...




To keep the legs at a postive angle , i stuck a couple of nuts on the bottom rails where the wide rails touches it.
This just keeps the legs slighty raised and makes it a lot easier to start the lift moving.







Its more apparent on the rear legs, where my floor is a bit flatter



So fully down the ramp has a total height of about 115mm, or 4 1/2" in black and white


You could knock and inch off for the uneven floor, and if you rounded the bottoms of the legs, or got the pivots very close the the bottom you could take off another 40-50mm because I welded box section feet on the bottom of the lower rails to clear the legs off the floor.

Will add, the lifting mech after new year, when it eventually arrives....
And also a small hinged ramp at the rear.

Then I have a lot of grinding to do to tidy up all the rought cuts etc

thats it for now anyways, hope it got a few of you thinking.

Yes I know its well after new year, ill update the thread very soon!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
Got a bit more done today, the jack is mounted on a homemade hinge.
The hinge is 3mm walled steel tube with a spare wheel spindle shoved through.
The bar attached to the jack is the end of a pinch bar, used for digging concrete its solid steel and about 26mm diameter.
Its connected to the legs by two 6mm thick steel plates that were hacked from a broken pipe bender .
I also gave it a smothering of hammerite just to try and keep the rust at bay.





You can see in this pic the hinge is open and tilting the jack forward to try and keep the force inline with the jack, they are not designed for sideways loads, that's also why it is side on to the lift.
It would look much neater and nicer if the jack was turned 90degrees but I was afraid of stressing the jack side on as the angle of incline changes.
At least facing this way the forces are transferred through the arms in the right direction.

I also had to relieve the floor to accommodate the jack thread that protrudes when the jack opens. Its not that I hadn't accounted for it, just it was easier than trying to raise the jack 6" from where it is now.

Couple of little touches left to do, a wheel chock or clamp would be nice, a swingarm pivot stand would be fooking awesome, but first the tail ramp needs wheels to stop it binding on the floor when lowering and the hinge needs a stop welding on to stop this happening


This is where I'm at so far, not put a bike on it yet as I need to make longer wires for the controls, they are too short, I have to bend down to raise lower it and I would rather be able to stand and steady the bike until I know how steady this thing is.

 

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The friendly Ghost.
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I have been trying to think this one through, how do you go about lifting the wheels off of the lift and keep the bike steady? Are you limited to non-suspension mods with this lift?

I know I always use a rear stand with my bike table (too narrow to use side stand when bike is centered) and have found it dead handy for chain maintenance. Is there a way you could create a pair of arms that lock onto the swingarm spools to lift the rear/steady the bike without straps?
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
When I do mine I'm going to attempt to put arms on the swingarm bolt, so the bike is lifted in the centre. Front straps will hold bike steady while the bike is raised then I can slacken them slightly and add back ones if needed. This should enable the bike to be strapped down with both wheels free to turn.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Ok, little update on this, buying the cheapest electric jack I could probably wasn't a good move.
The left and right arms have interlocking teeth to keep the scissor action square. They are just cheap pressed steel and eventually have started to mis-shape, slip and grind together, meaning the jack opens very unevenly, and not smooth at all.
It also made the motor work a lot harder than it should.
These things are rated to two tonnes, so either I've cocked up its placement and put all the force on one side, or its made of cheese. Both are likely.

Anyhow not many pictures of the progress as I needed it fixing there and then.

Basically all the lifting mech was cut out and the jack dismantled. I left my self the lead screw, nuts and the motor mount. The scissor arms and other stuff went in the scrap pile.
I worked out I had 300mm of travel on the lead screw, using a Pythagoras calculator I worked out that I could make a right angle triangle with sides 212mm and the "sloping edge" would be exactly 300mm.

So from the bottom leg pivot I placed the start of the lead screw 50mm in front of it and 212mm above it. Then I made the second nut mounts which was an old rear axle off unknown bike 162mm up the legs from the bottom pivot. This makes the right angle triangle I mention earlier, the nuts must be free to pivot up and down. When its up the second nut moves up the screw.to almost meet the first, the motor gets in the way, but working a way around it would only give and extra 20mm or so of lift so I really wasn't bothered.
Got a bit of tidy up to do and recoat with paint. Buts its fixed for now.








Also got proper controls installed now

 

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Oiler Boilereerer...er(s)
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Love it, how ever a little constructive criticism.

a) I would add some sort of cross bracing between the lower beams to tie them together, and also between the end up rights, this should take any flex of play out and make them sturdy as shit. You can probably get an x brace, or ladder braces on the ramp side, one or two ladder braces on the motor side, and a few ladder braces down the bottom piece. I don't see why you couldn't put them under the main rails if you needed to for it to sit down flat when it's collapsed. The difference in height shouldn't affect the loading height very much.

b) don't just rely on the screw to hold the weight, add some sort of simple mechanical safety. This can be as simple as a bar that pivots down into a "cup" (think like the way a hood support works on a car), or a bar that passes through a hole that the pivot arms rest against. If you want to be get a little more complicated, you can do a saw tooth kind of safety, for multiple positions.

c), because your lift is narrow, but lifts up pretty high, it will likely be easily toppled. I'd consider adding 4 removable out riggers, so when it's all the way up it wont want to tip to the side as easy. This can just be as simple as a box tube that slides into another box tube, with some bolt through it to adjust for and difference in levelness of the floor, if that makes any sense.


Props for creativeness, just be safe!





For reference



Good picture of a saw tooth safety





This picture shows a simple bar safety, and some ideas for bracing.










These are super over kill for what you need, but it gets the idea across for out riggers. It's the best picture I could find, but you can see the out riggers (stored up in slots on the lift) just slide into the holes down by the wheels. Scale down that concept, and replace the big screw adjusters, with a decent size bolt and just use a ratchet to adjust.


 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
If you look closer at the pics I posted the little feet are bolted to the floor. I had to put them on to level the ramp. They are 12mm rawl bolts and very solid, it wont go anywhere. They also keep the bottom rails the right width apart.

I never thought of cross braces, will see what I can do on that score, possibly tomorrow.
A stop of some kind is on the to do list, I did start planning one before it broke, just never got round to doing one.

All critism welcome, and also welding help haha. The main idea about posting it is for ideas, suggestions etc
 

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Oiler Boilereerer...er(s)
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If you look closer at the pics I posted the little feet are bolted to the floor. I had to put them on to level the ramp. They are 12mm rawl bolts and very solid, it wont go anywhere. They also keep the bottom rails the right width apart.

I never thought of cross braces, will see what I can do on that score, possibly tomorrow.
A stop of some kind is on the to do list, I did start planning one before it broke, just never got round to doing one.

All critism welcome, and also welding help haha. The main idea about posting it is for ideas, suggestions etc
I actually did not see that it was bolted. Missed that, and I kind of assummed becuase you had built it narrow, it was to store it in a corner easily when not in use, my mistake.:oops:

I would still add some cross braces and a safety.:) My biggest concern with the safety is that block that the screw turns into ever cracks you're gonna find out realy hard, and real fast.


As for welding, it's really just practice. You never stop learning, but a good way to try and get even spacing on beads with a good flow is try to imagine you are writing cursive lower case "e"s very slowly. That will help you get the feel for it. You can use all different techniques for the look of the weld, but you should be most concerned with making sure it's clean (what you are welding) and that you have good penetration.


There's about a million youtube videos that can help, and lots of forums like weldingweb.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I actually did not see that it was bolted. Missed that, and I kind of assummed becuase you had built it narrow, it was to store it in a corner easily when not in use, my mistake.:oops:

I would still add some cross braces and a safety.:) My biggest concern with the safety is that block that the screw turns into ever cracks you're gonna find out realy hard, and real fast.


As for welding, it's really just practice. You never stop learning, but a good way to try and get even spacing on beads with a good flow is try to imagine you are writing cursive lower case "e"s very slowly. That will help you get the feel for it. You can use all different techniques for the look of the weld, but you should be most concerned with making sure it's clean (what you are welding) and that you have good penetration.


There's about a million youtube videos that can help, and lots of forums like weldingweb.
Awesome, cheers mate, will try e's next time I weld something and take some decent pics.
Hopefully get to try to sort the braces and a stopper tomorrow. I still have a fair bit of box left, just running short of discs for the grinders lol
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Carrying on from above, went out today to see what could get done.

The front legs are already braced! I didnt even realise and i built it!


The blue box section is welded to both legs, and the back of the bracket that holds the lead nut.

I thought about squashing another in further up but decided one was plenty enough, so I stuck one on the back legs. Tight for space here, as when lowered the top rails sit inside the legs, this ruled out making an X, putting them flush with the legs and most other ideas I had.

The brace would only fit on the under side of the legs, buts its welded on it did sturdy up the rear a little.




Okay next on the list was stops, or safety bars, whatever you wanna call them.

I tired all ways of mocking up a saw tooth design but I kept running into two problems.
First I cant join one side to the other because the top of the ramp sits inside the base rails when lowered, secondly there is a 20mm gap between the legs and bottom rails.

I could space out the safety legs with nuts, bolts etc but I was a bit worried they could move sideways and slip off the base rail.

I settled for a locking pin.

I had some 6mm plate laying round, off a tube bender, so I cut it into little sections, retaining the holes and welded it to the base rails.

I tried the little e's and I found it a much easier way to weld, especially layed belly down on a concrete floor. Rep for this, thanks man.





there are odd inclusions where ive moved my arms ( elbows were sore on the concrete ) and a couple where ive tightened the e too much, i wire brushed and filled them in though.


I tried the locking pins off the pipe bender, they sort of worked, having a bit of slop in the holes meant they didn't lock up straight away, and they really needed to be joined in the middle to stop it happening. I found an off cut of thick walled tube, spun the pins in the lathe until the fit inside and welded them up



It is now long enough to go through both sides, and it can hold the weight of the ramp and me quite easily, so should hold a bike in an emergency lol.


Satisfied with that I tried out all five holes, to see what heights I can lock it at and got sick of the tail ramp scraping along the floor.

I decided to grind the stop off it, this allows it flop down like so




Problem is if I try to lower the ramp, it will folder under it and get stuck.
My original fix was to stop the ramp folding further than 45 degrees, and just let it scrape the floor as it lowered. This is now annoying.

So I rooted around and found an old locking pin off something, and drilled a hole in the hinge bracket to insert it.

Its so simple I kicked myself for not thinking of it the first time round.

Now the tail ramp can be at full droop like above, or locked out at a small angle for lowering the ramp.






I might get chance to whizz round with a grinder tidying up and throw a coat of paint over it tomorrow, then again pulleys came to day s I might crack on with the drill instead
 
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