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Help needed building a wheel chair "Lift"

My mother-in-law who is in a wheelchair will be moving in with us in our new house
Due to the logistics and the length to height ratio and space limitations I need to build a "lift" rather than a ramp. I know I need either a motor that runs two ways or some sort of hydraulics with a two way valve which will enable the lift to "Push" up and "Float" down

I can build the frame work for the lift I just need some "Frugal" ideas on the operating system. It MUST operate on either a switch or a lever as my mother-in-law has limited use of only one hand. 99% of the time someone will be there to help her but I would like her to be able to do it so she feels she has more freedom. Her mind is Great but MS has taken her body

Any help or a point in the right direction will be appreciated
 
U

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A few ideas/thoughts:

- buying hydraulic components new is very expensive, building it from new parts will cost more than a complete used lift. Cylinder(s), pump, valves, even the hoses are very high price
- hydraulic truck tailgates may be of use as they're designed to lift a load vertically, the 12volt DC pump would not be ideal for your situation
- an electric hoist may also work... you see these at industrial auctions frequently... they have a control pendant (the control buttons for up/down are on a cable which hangs down) ... this would be more of an "elevator" type setup
- honestly, I'd advertise a "wanted, handicap lift, will remove", there are probably many out there which are not being used... and it will be far easier and may actually be cheaper than building one yourself

cheers,
 

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An idea similar to one above. Is the lift going to be in a covered or protected area? If so, find a handicap transport van and get the lift out of that. Braun makes some of the best on the market, and you can find them on Ebay, either alone or with a van attached. Go to Ebay motors, and in the search box, key in Wheelchair. You can whole vehicles for 2500 or so. It'll all be 12 volt, but run to the camper supply place and get a 120 to 12 volt convertor box. there's the basics, fine tune to specs. John
 

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Get ahold of the county social services. They may have used equipment or be able to put into contact with someone who builds such things. Thats what we do around here anyway. The human devolopment comission may help also. Don't be shy. They like to help.

mikell
 

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She might be able to get a lift paid for from medicare or some gov. disability program. My friend gets free wheel chairs and things he needs. If she got hurt on some homemade peice of junk you would feel bad.
 
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I agree with Ed/IL. This is not something to "cheap out" on--really. If she is moving in with you permanently and/or you are providing support to her, chances are that she will qualify for some program that will not only pay for her lift, but will pay for any needed modifications to your home--like widening doorways/halls, or redoing a bathroom to make the shower safer. This is part of why we pay taxes, and you should not be ashamed to ask for what you need.
 

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A second thought on the subject, air cylinders also will lift a lot of weight if hydraulic costs too much. There is in the motorcycle industry, air lifts that lift fulll sized dresser type bikes - 600 pounds or more, some with a cylinder buried underground and others with a sicssors type action.
 

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agmantoo
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Mongo, what is the actual height/lift you are needing to accomplish with this device?
 
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