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  1. #81
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    So I spent a late night or two looking at options for pins that I might use to lock the inner and outer verticals together. The general idea I had was to find one that was at least 1/2" thick in diameter and that had a lanyard that would tie the two ends together. Ergo a locking pin. I didn't really find much along those lines, but I did find a boatload of ball-type locking pins, like this one (this is a general example):

    Example T-Handle Ball Type Locking Pin

    So I dunno. Those seem like they would work, but the idea I had in my head was to use the positive locking pin-within-a-pin variant.

    Not wanting to spend too much time in thinking/debating mode over something like this, I decided to let that brew and skip to #2. Here are the caster support plates cut to length and in primer:


    Then I set about welding them in place:


    And drilling the holes:


    And after 16 of those I was done:


    So far I've drilled 72 holes and have 4 more to go for the pins. Perhaps that is normal in the gantry crane building world, but for me, wow! As a friend commented a while ago regarding this project as a whole "that's like work or something."

    Anyway, the list:

    1) Drill pin holes and secure pins.
    2) Weld caster support plates to the legs/feet. Secure caster h/w. [DONE]
    2) Remove inners, clean & prep, then paint the entire thing.
    3) Stand the gantry.
    4) Implement the ram jack mounting, install ram jacks.
    5) Touch up paint.
    6) Install trolley and hoist.

    And speaking of casters, does anyone have any feedback regarding how these particular ones work? I ask because they don't work like I anticipated. They articulate, which seems to (obviously) be for shock/load absorption. But there are three set screws on the end, no springs inside and nearest I can tell, the resistance to load would come in the form of how tightly the through bolt is cinched. Just curious...

    Anyway thanks,
    Jerry

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    Well y'all, I've been offline for the past few days dealing with the Grandma thing. Her dementia elevated to the point where she needed more care than I could provide, unfortunately. So I did what I thought was best and put her into assisted living. First rate facility, so it could definitely be worse. That said, I'll tell ya...that was the most difficult thing I've ever had to do, hands down. Divorce, smivorce. Don't wish it on anyone. But I digress.

    Thinking that returning to my projects might help a bit, I decided to make some progress on the gantry. After a little more research, I discovered that Sherman Williams has a paint named "Pennywise", code SW 6349, that quite closely resembles burnt orange. So I stopped into a store after work and inquired further. They recommended an enamel type referred to as "DTM" and due to the outdoor exposure, recommended that I go with as glossy of a sheen as I could stand. So I went with semi-gloss. Glossy was too much for me.

    When I got home I began to prepare the spray gun and go at it. Then my son expressed an interest in helping to paint. And with that my spray gun went back into the cabinet. Although a valid application option, brush painting steel just feels odd to me somehow. However I am always glad to work with my son, so off we went. Naturally, he began his application of our "burnt orange" with the pace of an angry boar chaffed with sweat. However that quickly faded and I found myself alone, paint-covered but still looking like-new brush in hand. Some drudgery later, the first coat was on:


    And of course the conclusion of the night's work found my son insisting that it was too soon to stop painting, even though night had fallen and the "pesky bugs" were finding their way into the paint. So I let him finish off whatever was left in the tray:


    And called it a night. It'll need some touch-up but it was a good first-cut at getting the job done.

    The list:

    1) Drill pin holes and secure pins.
    2) Weld caster support plates to the legs/feet. Secure caster h/w. [DONE]
    3) Remove inners, clean & prep, then paint the entire thing. [DONE]
    4) Stand the gantry.
    5) Implement the ram jack mounting, install ram jacks.
    6) Touch up paint.
    7) Install trolley and hoist.

    Alright, gotta get the son into bed. Y'all take care and God bless.
    Jerry

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    Quick update, hardly worthy of a post, but ... tonight I got to the sides of the components that I couldn't get to when I painted the other night, so the first coat (and likely only) is fully complete:


    I'm posting primarily to mention that I received the locking pins today, which for some reason was kinda cool (IMHO). I ended up going with the ball-type pins, 7" grip length, 1/2" diameter. Supplier was McMaster-Carr:


    This is a link to the actual product if you are interested. The lanyards won't be long enough in my application, so I'll need to come up with an idea for those. And being a pilot, I couldn't pass up the opportunity to purchase a couple of the red "Remove Before Flight" protectors, as cheesy as that might be.

    Next on the agenda is to drill the holes, then the "big ticket item" will arrive ... standing the gantry on its feet. Still debating regarding how I plan to proceed with that task.

    Thank y'all,
    Jerry
    Last edited by av8or1; 07-27-2019 at 01:03 AM.

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    [IMG]https://i.imgur.com/miVEKQA.[IMG]





    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro

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    Made time to work on the locking pin stuff this afternoon. Funny but I found these last 4 holes the easiest to drill out of all 76. Not sure why that was, but I suspect that the thinner wall thickness of the SST by comparison to the 1/2" plate was the difference. As it turns out the caster holes are also 1/2" diameter, so I already had the annular bit that I needed in the mag drill. Just make the marks (careful to get proper alignment), set everything up 'n go:


    A short while later and both vertical groupings were done:


    As fortune would have it, the supplied lanyard that I thought might be too short to fit around the 5"x5" SST was just long enough, so no work will be needed to fashion something up:


    So cool. One more down. The list:

    1) Drill pin holes and secure pins. [DONE]
    2) Weld caster support plates to the legs/feet. Secure caster h/w. [DONE]
    3) Remove inners, clean & prep, then paint the entire thing. [DONE]
    4) Stand the gantry.
    5) Implement the ram jack mounting, install ram jacks.
    6) Touch up paint.
    7) Install trolley and hoist.

    Y'all take care,
    Jerry

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    Nice thread, I just read through it. Am curious, what's the load rating on the 1/2" hitch pins? To my untrained eye they look flimsy in comparison with the other components. In your design, is the limiting factor the pin itself, or the wall of the tubing that the pins pass through?

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    Quote Originally Posted by ballen View Post
    Nice thread, I just read through it. Am curious, what's the load rating on the 1/2" hitch pins? To my untrained eye they look flimsy in comparison with the other components. In your design, is the limiting factor the pin itself, or the wall of the tubing that the pins pass through?
    It is a nice build. You raise a good point on the pin size. I think the pin would shear before the wall of the column There is all that steel of the column backing it up. Its about the shear strength of the pins.
    av8or 1 may have calculated that. I think he is safe but could add a pin. His upright can only drop an inch.
    Bolt or Pin In Double Shear Equation and Calculator | Engineers Edge | www.engineersedge.com

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    Looks good so far. I notice the lower leg is larger than the upper leg so that rainwater will collect in the lower leg when it caught in the rain. Did you drill drain holes near the bottom to let it out?

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    Quote Originally Posted by ballen View Post
    Nice thread, I just read through it. Am curious, what's the load rating on the 1/2" hitch pins? To my untrained eye they look flimsy in comparison with the other components. In your design, is the limiting factor the pin itself, or the wall of the tubing that the pins pass through?
    ballen & mllud22- Thank you for the interest in the build. The locking pins I chose are made of 17-4 PH stainless steel with a breaking (or sheer) strength of 36,500 lbs. Thus I think they'd hold up to anything you could put on it, provided those numbers are correct and not merely an example of glorified marketing data. Granted, I don't know how that load rating was determined but if the in-real-life number in my application context is anywhere near the listed rating, I'm good and then some. Then some more. Note that I decided to go-big with the pins and at ~$65 each + shipping they live up to that billing, at least for a DIY guy like myself.

    That said, I'd like to make it clear that the pins won't actually support any weight. For that reason, I could have gone the cheap route and arguably been ok. However at every decision point in this build I've always opted for the stronger option; and as I have mentioned the gantry will be way-overkill. WRT my needs anyway. The pins are no exception, I could definitely have gone with a less-capable variant, but chose to splurge with these.

    I say that they won't support any weight, so allow me to explain. Ooooop. In consideration of keeping things short to appease the "keep it short" police on the forum, I'll address that in a separate post.

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    Alright, to pick back up on the pins-don't-support-any-weight business...

    That is because as you see the it in the pictures in a previous post, the inner vertical is completely inserted into the outer one. Ergo it is "bottomed out" and can't drop any further within the outer. I chose to drill the holes and insert the pins in that configuration for the purpose of simply retaining the inner within the outer during the standing process. It's arguable that you don't need to do that, but I am one who errs on the side of safety, so I did it anyway.

    Recall that the design employs two hydraulic ram jacks that are mounted on the outside of the verticals. The top of the jack will be affixed to the inner while the bottom to the outer. The actuation of the ram jack is what will cause the main beam to raise and lower. The total travel distance of that ram jack is only 18 (maybe 19) inches. I did consider drilling additional holes into the inner vertical at set points, say every 6" or so. With that, you could re-install the pins at those set heights. If you implement that design choice, the pins would then serve in a backup role to support the weight of the main beam and whatever it has dangling beneath it. And I may still do that, just haven't given it too many brain cycles yet. I am curious though: do folk on the forum see benefit in doing that?

    Yeah I dunno. At this point the plan is for the ram jacks to support all of the weight in any position other than full-down. Admittedly, now that I think about it, I do like the idea of having a backup in the form of the pins. I just don't like the notion that they'd have to be at fixed heights; I also worry about affecting the structural strength of the inner by drilling too many holes, or should I say too many holes that are too closely located. However now that I consider that concern, I don't know how valid it is.

    I suppose that if nothing else, drilling additional holes at he maximum travel height of the ram jack makes sense. So you'd have two settings for the pins then: full-up and full-down. In the full-up configuration the pins would serve as that backup. Full-down they do nothing but retain the verticals together. Not a bad idea.

    Thanks,
    Jerry

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rob F. View Post
    Looks good so far. I notice the lower leg is larger than the upper leg so that rainwater will collect in the lower leg when it caught in the rain. Did you drill drain holes near the bottom to let it out?
    I have seen 4x4 square pipe that had water in it that froze and expanded to the point that it split it at the seam. So drain holes are a must if it sits outside in a cold climate. Any climate!
    I don't know what the thickness of the 4x4s was but I was impressed by the power that ice has.
    So the Pins just allow disassembly.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rob F. View Post
    Looks good so far. I notice the lower leg is larger than the upper leg so that rainwater will collect in the lower leg when it caught in the rain. Did you drill drain holes near the bottom to let it out?
    Rob F.- Smart man you are. Stole my thunder 'n everything. Yes, while it is not in my list (I considered it a detail that might not be of interest, so I didn't include it) my plan to address rainwater is three-fold:

    1) Install some type of rubber membrane around the top of the outer vertical. It would have to be a variant that would allow the inner to travel vertically with ease though. You wouldn't want any type of binding that would restrict travel whatsoever. So I need to research this a bit to find a good option. Open to ideas if anyone has any to offer.

    2) Drill a hole at the base of the outer verticals to allow the rainwater to seep out. I'd keep the hole rather small so as to not adversely affect strength.

    3) Liberally coat the inside of the outer vertical near the bottom, the top of the support plate that is welded to each foot and finally the ends of the inner verticals. Then coat them again. Then again. And that is what I did. Granted, all the paint in the world won't stand up to moisture over time, thus a weep hole is necessary to prevent (or assist in preventing anyway) the accumulation of rust at a critical point in the structure.

    So the combination of these three was the best formula that I could come up with. Hopefully it will be sufficient over the long term. Time will tell.

    So those are my thoughts on the matter and what I did to address the issue. Thank you for the question and again, excellent thinking on your part.

    Jerry

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    Adding weep holes to the list:

    1) Drill pin holes and secure pins. [DONE]
    2) Weld caster support plates to the legs/feet. Secure caster h/w. [DONE]
    3) Remove inners, clean & prep, then paint the entire thing. [DONE]
    4) Install membrane at the top of the outer verticals to prevent rainwater entry.
    5) Drill weep holes at the base of the outer verticals for rainwater drainage.
    6) Stand the gantry.
    7) Implement the ram jack mounting, install ram jacks.
    8) Touch up paint.
    9) Install trolley and hoist.

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    Weep holes that are to small will clog with dust and dead insects. I would do at minimum a 1/2" hole more like 3/4". Probably take the die grinder and to open the bottom a bit more, like an upside down U. 3/4 is way more room for quick work with die grinder
    There is no way to keep water out of it if it will ever be outside.
    Your jacking set up seems to prevent having the larger tube on the upper part, so water could never get in in the first place. That is fine so long as it can easily drain out.
    Strength loss of that center tube is not something that would even enter into my mind, with the thick bolt plate and large tube gussets on either side. Reality is you could probably cut the entire center tube off below the gusset and be just fine, but I wouldn't. Just put some good paint in there to slow rusting after putting in drain holes.

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    Thank you for the feedback everyone and in particular Rob F.

    Well I guess it comes down to how you define small then ... I was thinking 1/4" and to me that was kinda small in this context. That is to say that I was not considering a hole that was drilled with a conventional bit, say 3/32" or something. I had planned on going with the smallest annular bit that I have in my kit, which IIRC is 5/16". So an up-size to 1/2" (9/16") isn't much of a stretch.

    Regarding the holes in the inner vertical, I have given it some thought and pretty much decided that the notion of drilling 4 more (in the inner vertical only) at the point of maximum travel height of the ram jack wouldn't adversely affect strength. After all, they'd be 18" or so apart, so even if that was a concern (which I don't think it is), the distance offsets said concern. Thus in the end I'll have the previously mentioned scenario:

    1) Pin holes at max height that will provide backup to the ram jacks
    2) Pin holes at min height that will merely keep the inner and outer verticals connected.

    Finally, when I thought about the number of holes drilled, the number isn't 76. Technically the inner and outer verticals are two separate components, so drilling through each is a separate hole. That brings the total to 80. Then if you add the 4 that I plan on adding for the purposes of backup support to the ram jacks at max travel height, that increases the overall count to 84 holes. Wow.

    Thanks,
    Jerry

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    When you add the extra (9/16"?) pin holes just move mag drill to the bottom and drill the drains, same bit. Is that what you are saying?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rob F. View Post
    When you add the extra (9/16"?) pin holes just move mag drill to the bottom and drill the drains, same bit. Is that what you are saying?
    That was the idea, yeah.

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    With the recent thought I've been giving to the verticals I decided that tonight I'd focus on the ram jacks. I've been avoiding this part of the build but there's no getting around it any longer. The reason I've delayed it is merely due to the arguably tedious amount of cutting that is involved. And more drilling holes; I only thought I was finished drilling holes. But anyway enough complaining...

    I began with four pieces of 5" x 5" x 1/2" plate that will serve as the vertical supports for the bottom ram jack mount. Ergo what the jack will sit on. These plates will be welded to the exterior side of the outer vertical. Decided to drill first, cut last. So I tacked all four pieces together, clamped them on the welding cart and configured the mag drill:


    I decided to go that route in order to avoid repetitive measuring while ensuring hole alignment.

    So time to cut to shape in accordance with the plans. I don't have a plasma cutter yet (even though I bought the material to build a plasma cart a few months ago - hah!) so there was no option but to bust out the angle grinder. Although still in rough cut condition, this is how far I made it tonight:


    Then had to discontinue work and do family stuff. I'll have to login and do real-work-that-pays-the-bills later tonight after my son is asleep, but it was worth it to make even a little more progress on the gantry build.

    Y'all take care,
    Jerry

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    Just wanted to say I'm enjoying this build thread! Even though I'm a brand new member here, I was shocked and frankly embarrassed at the totally unjustified SPAM comments av8or1 got initially. And for the TLDR crowd, well, it depends on the content and intent doesn't it? Sure, all else being equal shorter is better. But I'm actually annoyed (mildly) every time av8or1 concludes he has to break content up across msgs to appease the length police.

    I've looked at gantry cranes some in conjunction with installing CNC mill, manual lathe, and misc metalworking and woodworking machines. Looked at the infamous HF model as that's the only one I could see in the flesh. Didn't pull the trigger though. My shop space is a high-ceiling unfinished basement with a 12' x 10' overhead door. Fortunately the 1st floor is supported by steel H-beams and so I've just used chain hoists on beam clamps to lift things like a small 1100 lb CNC mill onto its stand.

    av8or1 Gantry Design/Build: Looks like a DIY mil-spec approach in terms of overkill. If the HF gantry crane can support 1 Ton, then yours should hold at least 5 Tons by the looks of it (no, not based on any calculations). As I understand it, this will live outdoors permanently. So I'm wondering why you even need adjustable height at all? The hydraulic ram adjustment is kind of cool, but seems like it places a lot of weight up high (though maybe that's not true considering the weight of the base) and I don't see the height being adjusted very often (like when and why?). But maybe there's a very good reason, and at this point the parts have already been purchased, so it's a moot point. Finally, since you've now got mag drilling down, I would stronly advise placing holes every 6 inches for the pins. It won't affect lift capacity and can't hurt. No matter how good those hydraulic rams are, I would *always* operate with the top assembly supported by your beautiful stainless steel pins. I mean, why not??

    As to the issue of water, I wouldn't even bother to try to keep water out. It will get in regardless and so the answer is to ensure that the water that inevitably gets in doesn't stay long and does no harm. So yes, good-sized drain holes as you've already spec'd. These are not for small amounts of moisture say from condensation (weeping), these have to be designed to drain even in the face of significant inflow. Not sure if snow/ice are relevant in you locale, but if so, they add to the water potential.

    OK, I think this post is now long enough that the TLDR crowd will just skip it. Which is just fine with me. If some of you read all this, then you may need to turn in your TLDR cards...
    Steve

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    Deluge2. Read post 88 through present.

    Quote Originally Posted by av8or1 View Post
    Alright, to pick back up on the pins-don't-support-any-weight business...

    That is because as you see the it in the pictures in a previous post, the inner vertical is completely inserted into the outer one. Ergo it is "bottomed out" and can't drop any further within the outer. I chose to drill the holes and insert the pins in that configuration for the purpose of simply retaining the inner within the outer during the standing process. It's arguable that you don't need to do that, but I am one who errs on the side of safety, so I did it anyway.

    Recall that the design employs two hydraulic ram jacks that are mounted on the outside of the verticals. The top of the jack will be affixed to the inner while the bottom to the outer. The actuation of the ram jack is what will cause the main beam to raise and lower. The total travel distance of that ram jack is only 18 (maybe 19) inches. I did consider drilling additional holes into the inner vertical at set points, say every 6" or so. With that, you could re-install the pins at those set heights. If you implement that design choice, the pins would then serve in a backup role to support the weight of the main beam and whatever it has dangling beneath it. And I may still do that, just haven't given it too many brain cycles yet. I am curious though: do folk on the forum see benefit in doing that?

    Yeah I dunno. At this point the plan is for the ram jacks to support all of the weight in any position other than full-down. Admittedly, now that I think about it, I do like the idea of having a backup in the form of the pins. I just don't like the notion that they'd have to be at fixed heights; I also worry about affecting the structural strength of the inner by drilling too many holes, or should I say too many holes that are too closely located. However now that I consider that concern, I don't know how valid it is.

    I suppose that if nothing else, drilling additional holes at he maximum travel height of the ram jack makes sense. So you'd have two settings for the pins then: full-up and full-down. In the full-up configuration the pins would serve as that backup. Full-down they do nothing but retain the verticals together. Not a bad idea.

    Thanks,
    Jerry

    Deluge2
    Here is some explanation about the pins. At present they are for assembly/disassembly to hold it when standing it up. Post 88 through present explains more.
    The real world is not always politically correct. As far as this forum goes it's real world opinions , facts and attitudes. That won't change and shouldn't. It's real. I came on the forum with some attitude about some of the posts. I had been lurking for years so should have known better. Its no different than working in a shop with different people.
    The comments about the spam early on in the thread are made because spammers are constantly trying to weasel in and pitch their ware's on the forum. It gets called out. It got worked out and the thread continued to be a good thread. No problems. We all have the choice to read or not read.


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