lifting things

Heavy items can be a challenge to lift when you are single handed and no longer in your 20’s or 30’s.

Installing an island oven/range hood

I recently had to install an island oven/range hood – this is the hood which fits above an island range in a kitchen. If the range was located against an exterior wall it would be a simpler matter to install a wall vent. However, an island range hood is more complicated because the hood has to be suspended from the ceiling.

I cut a hole in the ceiling above the range, then framed the hole, then installed the black upper support frame to the ceiling.  I attached the blower box and covers to the lower support frame (collectively called “the hood”).  The hood weighs more than 60lbs and it is difficult to single handed raise and secure it to the upper support frame, which is suspended from the ceiling.  Ideally 3 people are required – two to raise the hood and hold it horizontally in position while the third person bolts the hood to the upper frame.

Initially I tried using the packing carton, in which the hood arrived, as a platform located above the range and although this reduced the lifting distance to just a few inches, because the fitting of the two frames is concise, I was unable to horizontally lift and secure the components by myself.
block and tackle components
So I decided to use a block and tackle setup to hoist the hood vertically up into the frame suspended from the ceiling.   The ‘photo shows the components – a) a  2 ft length of 2×4 wood which was located across the joists above the hole cut into the ceiling; b) a silver pulley attached to the wood; c) a ring bolt attached to the wood; d) a blue pulley with a hook. Rope was knotted to the ring bolt then went round the blue pulley then up and around the silver pulley and then to me.  The hook of the blue pulley lifted wires attached to the hood.


I pulled on the rope and the hood ascended to the upper frame attached to the ceiling.  When the lower frame approached the upper frame I anchored the rope to a door handle, located the lower  frame into the upper frame and then pulled on the rope to move the lower frame well into the upper frame.  I again tied down the rope and bolted the frames together.  This achieved, I removed the pulleys, wires and ropes and the rest of the installation was relatively easy.





Lifting a generator into the bed of a pickup truck

I recently acquired adjacent property on the top of a hill which has a water well.  The well pump requires 240 volts to operate.  Through Craigs list I acquired an old generator which has 240 volts output.  I try to meet all my irrigation requirements using harvested rainwater.  Occasionally, I have to supplement the water supply and then I use the generator to power the well pump.  The problem is lifting the generator into the bed of the pickup truck since the generator and gas weigh more than 200 lbs.

beam and chain hoist for generator

My first solution was to span the 16 ft width of the tractor building with two 10 ft 4″x4″ posts bolted together where they overlapped. I then bolted a manual gear chain hoist to the beam. I stored the generator on a furniture dolly in a corner of the building and when I needed to load the generator, I pushed the dolly below the chain hoist, hoisted it above the height of the truck bed and reversed the truck into place and then lowered the generator into the truck.

This worked fine for a while but it took time to hoist and lower the generator from the dolly to the truck bed. So I decided to accelerate the process by storing the generator on a portable stand which I made from scrap lumber and 4 purchased wheels. The portable stand is the same height as the truck bed and it is easy to lug the generator from the one to the other. When not in use, the generator on the stand is wheeled into a corner of the building.

generator being loaded into truck bed
portable generator stand


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