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LAYOUT TO BE LOWERED FROM CEILING - FOR HO SCALE - HELP

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LAYOUT TO BE LOWERED FROM CEILING - FOR HO SCALE - HELP
Posted by pensive grandad on Thursday, May 06, 2010 6:33 PM

I am a Grandad who wants to build a 4x8 layout (Lionel HO) gauge in my Garage for my grandkids - trouble is (for space reasons) that I have to suspend it from the ceiling and lower it when I want to use it - My problem is how to rig it so it can lower/comedown and sit onto (removable/foldable legs) (I do want to add some height to the table to give it a 3d look (say some mountains, perhaps a tunnel etc - my design is going to be set with an African Safari scene and a small rural African village and 1 local depot.
the rigging is my main headache - once I have this clear in my own mind - I can start detailed planning. Any input would be apreciated

MIchael - Wolf Irvine California
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Posted by DSchmitt on Thursday, May 06, 2010 11:27 PM
I found the following written description of a system:

 

"Yes, years ago I successfully suspended a layout with no problems. The layout raised and lowered evenly, and the layout remained perfectly level. There are tricks to accomplish this.

First, you must use a cord type that does not stretch at all. I used plastic-coated steel cable. It's about the same diameter as clothes line, but very strong and it does not stretch.

I used four cables, one at each corner of the layout. Using small pulleys, the cables ran to the corner of the room, where they passed through a set of very closely-spaced pulleys and down to a counterweight.

The cables must be secured to a common point so that they remain "synchronized." I made a counterweight--an open wooden box that held blocks of steel that I could add to as the layout changed weight--and all of the cables were permanently anchored to the top of the box.

At the other end, each of the cables was attached to the layout using a turnbuckle. The turnbuckle allowed me to adjust the height with great precision. Each turnbuckle was adjusted until the layout was level.

Hope this information helps.

--David

http://whiteriverandnorthern.net/chapter_5.htm"

I tried to sell my two cents worth, but no one would give me a plug nickel for it.

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Posted by MisterBeasley on Friday, May 07, 2010 6:31 AM

I'm not sure this is an option, but have you considered a hinged system?  Since the front end of a car is relatively low, the layout could be attached to the wall at the end of the garage opposite the door.  Instead of rising out of the way, it would only have to tilt.  This would be a much simpler mechanical option than raising the entire layout.

It would, however, require removal of all the engines and rolling stock prior to liftoff, but that might be a wise precaution even with a vertical-lift system.

It takes an iron man to play with a toy iron horse. 

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Posted by pastorbob on Friday, May 07, 2010 8:15 AM

What you want can be done, but I can't help you on the how.  Way back, in the 1940-early 1950 era my dad, who was a locomotive engineer for Santa Fe built a Lionel O gauge layout for us on an enclosed back porch.  Since my mom had her washing machine and other stuff in the porch also, I could only put the layout down when running or working on the layout.  I know however dad rigged it, it worked very well, but 60 years ago fades the memory.   I do remember that we eventually went into the attic, Dad installed ceiling panels, floored the flooring and we moved the Lionel up there where it remained until after I graduated from college in 1959 and moved away (and started into HO).

Bob

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Posted by Allegheny2-6-6-6 on Friday, May 07, 2010 9:48 AM

 There was an article a few years back in MR where the builder had a garage set up suspend on a pulley system from the ceiling and it was a pretty complex system as it has to pull the entire layout all at the same time. I would not use cords but rather wire or steel cables. I know they sell pre made systems for storing pick up truck caps and larger items. I posted a link below for a similar system .It might behoove you to take advantage to use someone else's technology and adapt it to your layout.

 

 http://www.stacksandstacks.com/heavy-lift-storage-hoist-maximize-garage-storage?id=176&sku=108613&utm_medium=shoppingengine&utm_source=googlebas

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Posted by ARTHILL on Friday, May 07, 2010 9:52 AM
My main work bench is a 4x8 sheet of plywood, suspended from the ceiling. Fastening the pullys to the rafters needs to be done in a way that they are secure and not pull out. A eye bolt would work. I then have eye bolts in the corners that fasten to "S": hooks on the ends of the cables. The cables are nylon and fasten together with a large ring. The single "pull" rope then goes down the wall to a Boat winch mounted on a stud. I drilled a hole in the locking mechanism for a safty pin. It has worked for 25 years. For the layout table, you will need to make it sturdy enough so it can't flex, because there is no way to keep it stable with the ropes during raising and lowering. Lots of bracing is the key. Good luck. By the way, What is Lionel HO? They only made a couple of inferior engines and no track. If you really mean HO, there are MANY things better than Lionel.
If you think you have it right, your standards are too low. my photos http://s12.photobucket.com/albums/a235/ARTHILL/ Art
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Posted by bogp40 on Friday, May 07, 2010 3:39 PM

I would also consider a hindged method as described. You could still have some elevated areas and structures. This would just require that the layout be hindged enough away from the wall for the clearance needed. If you wanted an 18" tall mountain just allow for a 20" fixed shelf that the remainder of the swing up portion would attach to. Some stop blocks and latches would secure the layout in the up position. For all the intricate pulleys, cabling, counterweights and safetys, I would go the swing up. The layout would need some sort of folding or removable legs anyway. The drop down would only require 2 hingded legs and would be quite stable since it would be securely attached to the wall.

Modeling B&O- Chessie  Bob K. 

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Posted by pastorbob on Saturday, May 08, 2010 12:30 PM

:

ARTHILL
My main work bench is a 4x8 sheet of plywood, suspended from the ceiling. Fastening the pullys to the rafters needs to be done in a way that they are secure and not pull out. A eye bolt would work. I then have eye bolts in the corners that fasten to "S": hooks on the ends of the cables. The cables are nylon and fasten together with a large ring. The single "pull" rope then goes down the wall to a Boat winch mounted on a stud. I drilled a hole in the locking mechanism for a safty pin. It has worked for 25 years. For the layout table, you will need to make it sturdy enough so it can't flex, because there is no way to keep it stable with the ropes during raising and lowering. Lots of bracing is the key. Good luck. By the way, What is Lionel HO? They only made a couple of inferior engines and no track. If you really mean HO, there are MANY things better than Lionel.

Art:

I assume you adressing me with your question about Lionel,  need to re read my post ole buddy.  I said I had Lionel when I was a kid, it was Lionel O gauge.  I still have a couple of pieces including a Lionel O scale Hudson, which are very rare and I have been offered some really big bucks by visitors to the layout, so it got placed in a location where it can be viewed but not touched or stolen.

I also said I have been HO since late 1950's in my post, and I can guarentee there is no Lionel around the HO, nor have I ever owned any Lionel HO.

Your one year younger model railroad friend, Bob Miller

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Posted by bogp40 on Saturday, May 08, 2010 12:57 PM

The OP was the one who mentioned "Lionel HO", I didn't see any problem w/ Arthill's response. I had O27 years ago, but the Lionel HO was not much to work with. Not sure if the OP misstated the scale, let him explain....

Modeling B&O- Chessie  Bob K. 

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Posted by NSdreamer on Saturday, May 08, 2010 2:52 PM

A winch, such as a boat winch without the boat supports may work. It can hold a boat, so it can probably hold trains.

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Posted by Mr Fixit on Sunday, May 09, 2010 1:40 AM

Pensive Grandad, you do have a right to be somewhat pensive about your proposed project, but with a little research and careful building you can achieve your desire to have a layout which can be raised to the ceiling in your garage.

My father a retired Civil Engineer built a lift away arrangement for our Mirror dingy when I was a primary school boy. We didn't have an equal lifting arrangement nor a winch, but we did have home made steel safety hooks to support the weight when not in use. It worked for about 20 years with no problems except the laminated timber beams required re-gluing as the pva had not bonded well enough to the kiln dried hardwood.

Firstly, you need to ensure that you have adequate means of support from the roofing members in the ceiling above the garage, and that these are located above where you wish to place the suspended layout.

Secondly, you will need to know the locations of wall studs so that you can fasten a winch to the wall as well as any counterweight arrangement you may incorporate. Make things as easy and safe to use as possible.

Thirdly, I would suggest that you design the rigging so that the layout can be lowered to and held within 2 or 4" [50 or 100mm] of the floor to provide maximum flexibility when making and or working on or removing the layout. This degree of flexibility prevents the layout from crashing to the floor in the event of a failure of the winch as well as allowing you to easily load the layout into a trailer or ute when it comes time to move.

Fourth, I would suggest that you fit either S hooks or D shackles to the rigging to make it safe and easy to disconnect the layout when in use as well as somewhere to tie up the rigging to prevent injuries and tangles. I really liked an earlier suggestion of using turnbuckles to provide for levelling the layout.

Fifth, I would suggest fitting spacer sticks to the sides of the layout to prevent anyone [ie energetic grandkids] from over lifting the layout and crushing it into the ceiling.

If in doubt consult with people experienced in building to ensure that the structure will be strong enough and the sizes of bolts and fasteners required.

The Layout Table;

If you look back at the April 2009 issue of Model Railroader you will find an article on making 'Waffle Benchwork" which is a great help and exactly what you need to utilise. Basically what you are making is a torsion box so I would suggest that you read up on Torsion Box construction as this is what you are going to make. Premade metal fold out legs will also make life easier just provide support within the torsion box where the legs are mounted and braced from.

Wikipedia quote; A torsion box consists of two skins applied to a core material, usually a grid or framework of some kind. The torsion box functions as a beam, but is considerably lighter than a solid beam of the same size without losing much strength. Torsion boxes are used in the construction of airframes, especially wings and vertical stabilizers, in making wooden tables and doors, and for skis and snowboards.

As a Carpenter I have made a 8 x 4 torsion box benchtop for a workfriends layout and I was surprised at just how much stiffer the layout was once the bottom skin was attatched. I also drilled a series of holes through the stringers and webs to facilitate wiring the layout in an orderly manner. I have made a number of torsion boxes now and can recommend them, but remember that the type and amount of glue used is critical.

I would also suggest that you make the scenery using lightweight materials to keep the total weight down.

Mark

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Posted by farrellaa on Monday, May 10, 2010 8:21 AM

You can get aircraft grade wire rope/cable from McMaster-Carr in many sizes  (diameters) and if you look at their breaking strength you will be amazed at what a 1/16-1/8 inch diameter cable will hold. This  type of cable is very flexible and you can get pulleys to match the cable diameter. I have used this in displays that I designed for a professional model shop in New York many years ago. Just a suggestion, but do check the breaking strength of whatever cable/rope you use. McMaster-Carr is on the web and they will ship anywhere at reasonable cost and very quickly.

Good luck,

Bob

Life is what happens while you are making other plans!

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Posted by STEELERSFAN on Monday, May 10, 2010 6:40 PM

I have a small 5' x8' layout that I raise and lower in my workshop. It is a 2x4 stud underframe, with 2-2x4x12' runners underneath. I have eye hooks in those and ropes that come to a single point in the middle. The I have a clevis that can snap to the overhead ropes that go up to a pulley system in the ceiling and over to the wall then down to a handcrank (like those found on a boat trailer). The rope and pulleys have a 110 lb weight limit. There is one rope on each end so the design can carry 200 lbs, and i doubt the layout woudl ever weigh that. I built it heavy so it would remain stiff during the raising and lowering process and not wreck my scenery.

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Posted by soo800 on Saturday, May 15, 2010 3:16 AM

I operate a 10x8 layout in my sons room that is raised to 18" from the celling. I frame mine on the  bottom 2 sides my block & tackels are with 2" angel iron & used the same on the celling after mounting it to the top length of 2"x4"s. I attached the 2x4s to the wall studs using GOOD 4" scews, 2 per stud. But I first wellded 6" J hooks to the layout steel (6" to clear my senery & framing) & the anchor rings provided with the pullies to the wall steel. I used 4 block & tackel pullies from Northern Tool ($10 per set) each set is 6" tall when raised & each is rated for 2000#. I framed the back wall with a 1"x4", ran a 1"x4" across the front of the wall mounted 2x4s(as the layout only uses half the room), then ran a 1x4 down the middle between the1x4s. I then used a 8" 1x4 layed flat to brace the front & middle T of 1x4s & mounted a boat winch with the handel cut to clear the celing to that brace. I used one double ridged mounted pully in each of the front corners to direct the rope to the winch. This system works great, I simply drilled holes at different hights in the wall studs nearest the 4 corners & insert I bolts to rest the layout on.The pullies use a block of 3 pullies there fore cutting the pull weight by 3/4 ie 100# lift weight is cut to 25# pull weight. The corner pullies mean no downward force on the winch & buy bringing 2 lines in  opposite the other 2 lines means the line pull is canceled out & winch mounting only has to handel the twist of the lines coming in top & bottom of each other, this the scews can handel.                      The other plus too no down ward force on the winch is that you don't have to mount or screw anything into the celing all the weight is transfered to the wall studs. All this can be done for around $100, if you can weld yourself other wise $140. Oh yah get good braided nylon rope rated for your project the stuff that comes with the pullies dosen't look like it can hold much. Good Luck hope this helps.                                  

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Posted by luvadj on Monday, May 17, 2010 6:22 PM

 My last HO layout was 3/4 of the garage ceiling and was raised and lowered by a small boat trailer wench that I mounted midway down one side of the layout. The other side had two eyelets that we had rope tied to that ran up through two pulleys in the ceiling. as you cranked the wench, the far side would rise up more than the crank side, so you had to level it out as you went up or down.

I must admit, it was a great way to save space in that small garage.

Bob Berger, C.O.O. N-ovation & Northwestern R.R.        My patio layout..SEE IT HERE.

There's no place like ~/

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Posted by pensive grandad on Monday, May 17, 2010 6:58 PM

Pensive grandad responding _

First of all as a newby here i was most impressed by the terrific response of helpful ideas to get me going - thank you all so much.

The person who mentioned that there was no HO guage got me thinking and I took the instruction book from the kit to a local Railroad store here in Anaheim - and i find that i have an "O" gauge train.

 The next suggestion that seemed so easy was to buy a "canoe" hoist, and i found a number of interesting sites - the most suitable seemed to be made by a company called HARKEN

i am embarking on the sonstruction this week, and thank you for your help (my son is helping me)

MIchael - Wolf Irvine California
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Posted by pensive grandad on Monday, June 21, 2010 6:32 PM

I want to thank you all for the helpful hints i received - i was amazed at the depth of the discussions and the many options suggested -

 Folks tell me my set is LIONEL "O" gauge and some "1/27th" - what is the difference?

I have already started on building the 4' x 8'  base and i am almost ready to think about the layout and the finishing processes that lie ahead -

i got to thinking about how can I DISGUISE  the Fast Track from looking too unrealistic - my Lionel set has this track which looks so artificial and i am interested in changing the appearance - though from the outset it seems almost impossible.

as i look at all the magnificent layouts shown on-line i am thinking that perhaps Fast Track Lionel is NOT the way to go??

MIchael - Wolf Irvine California
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Posted by fwright on Tuesday, June 22, 2010 1:53 PM

pensive grandad

Folks tell me my set is LIONEL "O" gauge and some "1/27th" - what is the difference?

i got to thinking about how can I DISGUISE  the Fast Track from looking too unrealistic - my Lionel set has this track which looks so artificial and i am interested in changing the appearance - though from the outset it seems almost impossible.

as i look at all the magnificent layouts shown on-line i am thinking that perhaps Fast Track Lionel is NOT the way to go??

First of all, O gauge and O27 are not related to HO, which is 1/87 scale.  Both are types of 3 rail O track, which has a nominal scale of 1/4" per foot (1/48 scale).

O27 was brought out by Lionel as a cheaper version of its O gauge line back in the '30s.  The O27 track rails are not as high, and in the normal case, have sharper curves (27" diameter vs 31" diameter).  Because of the sharper curves and lower cost, the O27 cars were often (but not always) a little smaller than their O gauge brethren (even less to scale).  O27 locomotives would have fewer features than their O gauge counterparts, such as sliders for 3rd rail pickup instead of rollers, 2 position E-units, and fewer whistles and horns, but were otherwise the same size.  Even today, the smaller size cars and smaller and simpler locomotives are frequently identified as O27.

Fastrack was brought out as a better alternative to tubular track (traditonal O and O27 track) for train sets.  Fastrack would definitely be preferred for carpet and floor layouts.  But on a table, Fastrack's big drawback is the extra noise.  Whether Fastrack is more or less realistic looking than tubular track is in the eye of the beholder.

The most realistic track systems for 3 rail O are MTH Scaletraxx, Atlas, Lionel Super O (out of production since the early '60s, but still available) and GarGraves, with the 1st 2 being a cut above the other 2 on the realism scale.  Atlas and Scaletraxx are also quite pricey, although on a 4x8 the price differential might be manageable.  Of the more realistic systems, only Atlas has O27 curves (the rest have bigger minimum curves).  The smallest switches for Atlas are O36, I don't know about Scaletraxx.  Super O only had O36 curves and switches.

I would recommend visiting a train show or a hobby shop (only if they carry multiple brands of track) and comparing the various makes and styles.

my thoughts, your choices

Fred W

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Posted by Toby's Dad on Friday, June 25, 2010 3:36 AM

My son and I run a 4 by 8 foot layout that is hung from the garage ceiling.

The baseboard is held rigid by 4x 3/4 planks forming a lattice.  I was able to get them cut so they are a nice tight fit. Each long plank has slots running down half the depth, and each cross plank has slots running up half the depth. 

This lattice was assembled and glued together, then screwed and glued to the top sheet.  My design is not rigid which is why I use chains to hold it to the ceiling ... see below.  I may try a torsion box.  You could learn from me and use wider planks for the lattice.

My pulley system is four ropes running from an eye-bolt at each corner to a central point at one end of the garage.

At each corner, the pulley ropes are doubled up twice so there are four ropes.  This makes it easy enough to raise  and lower by hand.  ** Now that I have read this thread, I will go out and buy a boat winch!!

When the layout is up close to the ceiling, I have a chain for each corner, and they clip onto eye-bolts.   This is strong and does not rely on the ropes.  I use cheap nylon rope because it is only used during the raise and lower work. The chains hold the layout rigid and level.

My garage has no ceiling, so I connect the pulleys to the framing with chains around timbers.

Underneath we have a set of light-weight, and cheap, fold-down metal legs.  Screw in table legs would also work well.

Have fun.  We certainly do.

Toby's Dad

 
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Posted by L&M RR on Friday, June 25, 2010 9:26 AM

Both David and Mark hit it on the head.  I've seen this done more elaborately, using a geared down quarter horse motor, which really wasn't necessary.  That boat crank should do the job well. I'd stay away from eye bolt anchoring into ceiling rafters, as they can pull out.  Instead, use eye-bolts/nuts through the rafter as the anchor.

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Posted by cliffsrr on Friday, June 25, 2010 11:33 AM

More years ago than I like to remember I lived in a house with the garage under bedrooms. The garage ceiling had beams across about 8 ft apart. On the beams away from the garage door I mounted 3/4 galvanized pipe to make a connected set of arms down to a layout. 2 sets to make 4 arms. The whole thing was pulled to the rear and up to the ceiling. When lowered the arms came down to the back side of the beams and was fairly stable. The whole thing was cranked up with a boat winch with cable linked to both sides. Worked great. The problem I had was when I moved out a 9 x 14 layout was to hard to transport. I sold it for a song! The nice thing about this arrangement was the fact that no sawhorses were required. Every situation calls for different engineering which is another fun  thing about the hobby.

Cliff

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Posted by pathvet9 on Monday, June 28, 2010 8:28 PM

Mister Beasley is correct. I had a GMC truck that would fit easily under a 4x8' plan in the middle of a 16' wide garage(that my wife allowed me!!!   Whistling

Anyway, it worked until I got a Dodge 3500 with duallies. Now I have the garage to myself!!   Yeah!!

Cheers, Jake ---------------------------------------- Patience when resources are limited
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Posted by Cucamonga on Thursday, July 01, 2010 11:22 AM
Michael: in the 70's I constructed a 4x12 layout for HO that I suspended from the garage ceiling with pulleys. It worked very well. used 2x4s to create the basic framework and that is where the hooks for the pulleys were fastened to. The advantage of this system is that you can lower one side of the table much more than the other to provide easy access to the underside for wiring and such. The pulley system was built strong enough to hang the table from just 2 hooks, i.e. the long side of the table. That layout also contained two levels with the "yard" on the upper level and a couple of tracks side by side on the lower with a ramp at one end of the 4x12. I did not use any motorized hoist system, but that could ease the effort of raising the table. The pulley system used double shive pulleys so that there are actually 4 ropes doing the pulling, making it much easier. They sell those at Osh Hardware (I only found real cheap ones at Home Depot and Harbor Freight). A couple of weeks ago, I built my friend a suspended table that is 4x8 and hangs over my pool table. It has a removable hatch in the middle to allow the train table to be lifted above the billiard lamp. That hatch is good for scenery only though, no trackwork for simplicity. He's using N-scale though, but the principle is the same. I thought about using an electric lift and to rig more pulleys to guide the ropes to the central lift point, but that would look even worse in the family room. When the table is lowered, it rests on a couple of cushioned 2x4s that rest on the pool table rails so as not to touch the table surface or the cushions of the rails.
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Posted by systemguru on Wednesday, February 09, 2011 10:48 PM

any chance you have a drawing or picture of the hoist?  I am looking to raise a simple 4 x 8 board with aluminum channel support up to the ceiling.

 

I am a visual person and what to be clear about the layout.

 

Thanks

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Posted by Atlantic and Hibernia on Thursday, February 10, 2011 11:58 AM

I seem to be in the minority in that I would never again suspend a layout from a ceiling.  My local train club had an HO scale traction layout that we only ran during shows.  The rest of the time it was suspended from my basement ceiling.  Warm, moist air rose to the ceiling level and was trapped between the layout surface and the floor joists.  The track, yes it was nickel silver, corroded badly.  I have never seen nickel silver track looking that bad.

Do be careful about humidity.

Kevin Olsen

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Posted by systemguru on Thursday, February 10, 2011 8:30 PM

Fortunately for me I am in Sunny california and I want to hoist it in a nice dry garage.

 

I tested double pulley last night with a weight and boy does that lighten the load.  I had bought a boat winch but not sure I will need it.  just not getting a good visual of the cable (cord) runs.

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Posted by soo800 on Friday, February 11, 2011 1:58 AM

I hate to sound negative, but please don't support your layout from the ceiling unless you know what is up there & if it can hold the load. If you don't have a floor above where it will hang it will be hanging from rafters & most are made from 2x4s & designed to take a load compession load & not a load hanging from them. If you have a floor above the floor joists will most likely take the load, rafters not so much. You may have to go up & run a stringer across the rafters secureing them together & than hang the layout from that, this will spread out the load. Some layouts can weigh 100 hundered pounds or more once all the framing is in place so this is one of the rare times model trains can kill. Don't get me wrong this has been & can be done very safely.

 I have a suspended 10x8ft layout in my boy's room, it runs the width of the room and I was able to secure a 8ft section of 2x2 angle iron to the wall studs in two walls oposite each other with I-bolts welded to it for attaching the pulleys. This allows the walls take the load, what there designed to do. When the layout is in the raised position I secure it by resting it on 3/8 I-bolts inserted into holes drilled in the wall studs(2 per side), I also have holes at multiple heights. I also use a boat winch but it has a reversible ratchet safety catch that works in bolth directions so if I loose my grip while raiseing or lowering the layout won't free fall. I still wont allow anyone under it when it's not on the I-bolts in the wall. 

I found that running one rope through all the pullies didn't raise the layout level & had to run a seperate line for each pulley. I mounted my winch on the ceiling to a 2x4 secured beween the ends of the angle irons on the walls & then directed the lines to the winch from opposite sides(2 from each side) through double pulleys fasened to the end of each angle iron inline with the winch. The ropes from one side enter the winch on top of the drum & the other side lines on the bottom, witch side goes up or down makes no differance. I didn't secure the 2x4 to the ceiling just the steel on the walls. I did run another 2x4 from the middel of the center where the winch is to the back wall parallel to the first 2x4 to prevent it from bending back & forth when cranking the winch. I know that not secureing the 2x4s to the ceiling seems bad but since the walls take the weight of the layout the winch only has to take the line pull & since I have 2 lines from each side coming in opposite the pull is equiled out.The winch will only want to unravale or spin & puts no downward force on the winch or 2x4s. 

All my components are from Northern Tool & Equipment, pulley #45538 (the rope it comes with is junk but pulley is great) winch #14882. 

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Posted by Seamonster on Friday, February 11, 2011 9:57 AM

I just want to add my My 2 Cents to the good advice you have already received.  Years ago I had a 30 ft. tilt-over tower for my ham antenna.  I bolted a boat winch near the bottom of one tower leg, ran a length of aircraft cable up to a pulley at the 20 ft. level then anchored the end of the cable to an eye bolt in the roof.  I would advise you to anchor the 4 cables to your layout the way I attached the eye bolt to my roof.  Don't use a screw type eye bolt.  Use one that takes a nut on the end.  The corners of your layout, or wherever you plan to attach the cables should have a large block of wood securely attached to the framework.  Drill all the way through this block, insert the eye bolt, then secure it on the bottom with a large washer and a nut.  I think the eye bolt I used was 3/8" or 1/2" dia.  That way, when you're lifting the layout, there's no way the eye bolt can rip out of the layout and the lifting pressure is applied from underneath as if you were pushing the layout up.  

..... Bob

Beam me up, Scotty, there's no intelligent life down here. (Captain Kirk)

I reject your reality and substitute my own. (Adam Savage)

Resistance is not futile--it is voltage divided by current.

EDZ
  • Member since
    January, 2011
  • From: Salisbury, MA
  • 158 posts
Posted by EDZ on Friday, February 11, 2011 10:55 AM

I've been using a Superwinch winch (model 115) for 13 years, daily, raising 300 +- lbs without any problems.  They typically make truck winches, but they have 2 models that run off house current.  It's gear reduction so it's loud, but it'll pull that up easily.  Go online to Summit Racing for the best price.  Summit also sells replacement cable spools.

A counterweight system would also be worth looking into.  You can easily rig something up for cheap money.

For the cable, I'd use garage door cable as it has lots of cable ends, pulleys, etc already easily available at Lowes, Home Depot, etc.

You might want to consider using steel studs VS typical wood 2x4's as your framework.  They're stronger & lighter, but more money.

"We are what we repeatedly do.  Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit."  -Aristotle

  • Member since
    May, 2010
  • 4 posts
Posted by pensive grandad on Friday, February 11, 2011 12:32 PM

HOIST EQUIPMENT COMPANY  that supplies all manner of Hoists etc is

HARKEN

http://www.harkenstore.com

They were very helpful in making suggestions, as i intend to raise my nearly 200# system to the ceiling - they have a 6 point hoist system.

try them

Good Luck

Michael Wolf

MIchael - Wolf Irvine California

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