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Thread: Ceiling Mounted Chain Hoist

  1. #1
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    Ceiling Mounted Chain Hoist

    I'd appreciate any input, ideas, and warnings for this project.

    I want to mount some kind of hoist to the ceiling in my garage. The ceiling is sheet rocked, the ceiling joists run as shown with the green lines in the picture, and are 24" on center.

    Ideally I want to shoot for 300lb safe capacity - I don't work with thicker than 1/4" material mostly, the only time I can see going over a 150lb lift is if I have some piece of equipment to unload from the truck bed (pressure washer, tiller, etc)

    At first blush I was thinking of lag bolting a 48" long 2 x 4 along one of the joists, with a sturdy eye bolt secured in the middle to hang a small chain hoist from.

    That white cabinet/table is on wheels, so I can roll it under a suspended object and lower it down to it.

    I guess I'm wondering if others have done creative, cool, innovative hoist mounts in a similar situation. Is my initial thinking/plan sound?

    Thanks in advance for any and all input.

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  2. #2
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    Re: Ceiling Mounted Chain Hoist

    Carefully cut a hole in the roof and reserve that piece. Put your cross beams on top of the joists. You can even build it up even taller. Then put your eye bolt in there.
    The whole thing is recessed so you get extra height. The come along of pulley system it going to take up a good 1 to 2 feet of height.
    Trim out the hole you cut with molding then put the cut piece back in it.
    It just looks like an access hole and not an eye sore.

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    Last edited by psacustomcreations; 06-03-2020 at 04:06 PM.
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    Re: Ceiling Mounted Chain Hoist

    300 lbs aint much... You can buy a small electric hoist for cheap.

    I hate to suggest HF but they do sell a pretty good E-hoist.... I have their biggest one/for years now and it works great.

    yanking a chain hoist gets old fast...... trust me.
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    Re: Ceiling Mounted Chain Hoist

    I would go in the direction of the light and cover 3 beams ( bolt into all 3 beams) put a pulley in the center and run the cable to the wall and down to the hoist mounted on the wall. this will give you more height and have an up/down switch at the hoist.
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    Re: Ceiling Mounted Chain Hoist

    If your 'roof joists' are trusses then the lower members will most likely be 2x4's, I would be very cautions about lagging into them! like others have said it's much better to go overtop of them for reinforcing... I like the idea of making a hole/trough... this would give you the option of a traveling lift system.

    Another thing you can do with the wall mounted lift setup is have a separate winch to 'move' the lift pulley giving you the ability to move the lift while keeping maximum lift height with the wall setup.

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    Re: Ceiling Mounted Chain Hoist

    A couple of things should be noted. Going over the top of trusses is good, however you should at least be aware. The ceiling is likely drywalled because it is a 1 hour firewall. If you cut a hole in it and then trim it off to hold it and you have a fire, you will likely have a problem when the insurance company realizes what you did. Ok, the second thing, I see popcorn ceiling up in your garage, if that's from the later 70's or earlier its likely asbestos based. Now that I played Mr. safety, the rest is on you. Good luck with your project, I always wanted an overhead trolley!

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  11. #7
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    Re: Ceiling Mounted Chain Hoist

    Put your cross beams on top of the joists
    Same as I did with mine, covered four actually (laid on top of the bottom chords in the attic) with a piece of 2 x 3 x 1/4 HSS 9' long. I used plates about 6 x 6 on top of the HSS and went down thru the plates, over the bottom chord of the truss and ceiling with four pieces of rod so the HSS was straddled it, did the same on the underside of the ceiling but that piece has a lug on it to hook the falls to, did that in three places so I have different spots to hook to, I realize the bottom chord is not meant to take any vertical load so I tied it into the top chord of each truss to spread the load out.
    I've lifted my utility trailer, 'bout 600lbs+ without a problem...........Mike

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    Re: Ceiling Mounted Chain Hoist

    If you have attic access I would first take a look at the design and see if there is a spot more solid than the rest because they come together there or maybe two are doubled. If all just identical long spans of 2X4 at the bottom. Maybe go up and deck screw a 2X6 or 2X8 on top that has another one screwed on it standing vertical kinda like 1/2 a I beam and span as many as you can and attach your anchor to the boards. Then alongside the board run another board or other chain or rod support up to the top of the trusses so you not all pulling on the bottom boards only.
    Last edited by danielplace; 06-04-2020 at 09:16 AM.

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    Re: Ceiling Mounted Chain Hoist

    I have to agree,,, 300lbs is Nothing really and you're over doing it (think of a refrigerator sitting above that spot. How concerned would you be about it's support? )

    I had a 12' scrap of 3" I-beam and need to pick-up and stack rows of these Fireworks Pods I make (we shoot professional shows and these are groups of tubes) that weigh @200lbs.. I took a HF "hoist" (800lb cap. for @$80) and put some rollers on it. I attached the beam to the joists (really more collar ties spaced 4' apart) with angle iron on the top, but you could just use a plate and lag thru the sheetrock (maintaining the Fire Code) into your joists.

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  14. #10
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    Re: Ceiling Mounted Chain Hoist

    I have a bit more to lift...same principle though.

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  15. #11
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    Re: Ceiling Mounted Chain Hoist

    You need to know what your attaching to, as others have mentioned, I'd be leary putting lags into engineered trusses. I have a few picking points lagged into my joists, they are 4x16 old growth, one is used for picking the arbor press and tailstock off my LeBlond lathe, the other is used for pulling the spindle drive and gearbox on my VMC. I have a one more style and I'll snap a photo later today.

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  16. #12
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    Re: Ceiling Mounted Chain Hoist

    I did just what you are describing, but my garage is under the house, so I was screwing into 2x12 floor joists. I sunk an eye hook into a 2x4 and used 4 inch screws to attach the 2x4 into 3 joists. Lifts a 400 lb welder no sweat, but just for safety sake I stay clear of what I am lifting.
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    Re: Ceiling Mounted Chain Hoist

    Quote Originally Posted by camfab View Post
    A couple of things should be noted. Going over the top of trusses is good, however you should at least be aware. The ceiling is likely drywalled because it is a 1 hour firewall. If you cut a hole in it and then trim it off to hold it and you have a fire, you will likely have a problem when the insurance company realizes what you did. Ok, the second thing, I see popcorn ceiling up in your garage, if that's from the later 70's or earlier its likely asbestos based. Now that I played Mr. safety, the rest is on you. Good luck with your project, I always wanted an overhead trolley!
    If having it up out of the way is what you really wanted to do. You could build box in-between and above the trusses and drywall/finish it to preserve the ceilings fire rating.

    Hoping it is not asbestos. If that possibility is for real you would surely want to know for sure before even drilling into it.
    Last edited by danielplace; 06-04-2020 at 02:21 PM.

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    Re: Ceiling Mounted Chain Hoist

    Wow - many thanks to all of you for great ideas and warnings.

    1] House built in 1979 - so it's post-asbestos popcorn ceiling dangers (yay).

    2] I'm definitely going with some sort of trolley system - with what I envision this taking to install right - might as well enjoy a hoist I can position in multiple locations.

    Here are some pictures of the roof line, attic space, and corresponding area of the garage:

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    Man, it's going to be a tight squeeze to get to the area for the hoist track. The first excursion over there will be to poke a couple probes through the sheet rock to get better monuments as to how/where the wood lies in relation to where I want the track to go. At first blush it looks like the track will be close to where the shorter East/West truss bottoms join into the long North/South truss bottom.

    I have a lead on a 10' length of 12ga Superstrut/Unistrut C-Channel - this video is a quick overview of the trolley system available and I think it's right up my alley:



    If I have the option of tying into (8) of the East/West trusses close to where they meet the long N/S truss - that would seem to be the best/strongest option?

    Limited to 5 pics per post - I'll start a new one with some component ideas.

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    Re: Ceiling Mounted Chain Hoist

    Pressure treated 2X8 laid over top of at least as many as that is long plus one. You can predrill it for the all thread rod you use to hang it. I think you would want a nut and fender washer under and over the 2X8 so track can not lift and/or sway side to side.

    Maybe one on edge also and just use long deck screws through the 2X8 up into it along it's whole length. A deck screw in predrilled holes at every truss fastening it down will also make it all the more solid.

    Then maybe at each end and the center tie in to a upper part of the truss just so it doesn't buckle the ceiling at all with a heavy load.

    Just looked again but aren't the trusses going the same way as the track. Oops that changes the plan. Think your first post or I pictured them the other way I think. Going with the trusses is a different deal altogether. Lol.

    If that is the case I guess you will need separate pieces to put up for each all thread to hang from.
    Last edited by danielplace; 06-04-2020 at 02:56 PM.

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    Re: Ceiling Mounted Chain Hoist

    continued...

    The UniStrut system uses a 1-5/8" C-channel that is suspended by larger "C" shaped steel brackets:

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    Plan: 10' of track, (4) of the hangers, (1) 4-wheel trolley, (6) Lag Bolts
    (Plain lag bolt at each end [to also act as a stop] into the 2x4's / (4) of the hangers lag bolted to the 2x4's)

    Estimate: Track = $29 / Hangers = $16/ea x 4 = $64 / Trolley = $30 / Total=$123.00 +/- (lag bolts, washers, etc)

    Minimum of 1.8 Safety Factor at 250lbs.


    I think the biggest question I still have for the group is which 2x4's to bolt into? All along a single big one, or into 7 separate 2x4's that closely terminate into the long N/S truss bottom.

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    Re: Ceiling Mounted Chain Hoist

    I was going to suggest unistrut. Because your open up above I'd simply lay a 4x4 across the trusses and drop some all-thread through the ceiling and tighten up the unistrut. If I recall they have a design guide with spacing and such. Here are a few more pictures of my various hoists. The first photo shows the hanger I used to lower the compressors into the basement. The original plan was to put a beam under two hangers but I got lazy and just installed the one. I removed a few treads from the basement stairs and lowered the compressors down. The shop is so much more pleasant.

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    Re: Ceiling Mounted Chain Hoist

    Quote Originally Posted by danielplace View Post
    Pressure treated 2X8 laid over top of at least as many as that is long plus one. You can predrill it for the all thread rod you use to hang it. I think you would want a nut and fender washer under and over the 2X8 so track can not lift and/or sway side to side.

    Maybe one on edge also and just use long deck screws through the 2X8 up into it along it's whole length. A deck screw in predrilled holes at every truss fastening it down will also make it all the more solid.

    Then maybe at each end and the center tie in to a upper part of the truss just so it doesn't buckle the ceiling at all with a heavy load.

    Just looked again but aren't the trusses going the same way as the track. Oops that changes the plan. Think your first post or I pictured them the other way I think. Going with the trusses is a different deal altogether. Lol.

    If that is the case I guess you will need separate pieces to put up for each all thread to hang from.
    I wouldn't recommend using pressure treated lumber, it is usually a substandard grade of lumber they use... plus the pressure treated likes to eat steel even the new stuff that's not suppose to.

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    Re: Ceiling Mounted Chain Hoist

    Quote Originally Posted by ronsii View Post
    I wouldn't recommend using pressure treated lumber, it is usually a substandard grade of lumber they use... plus the pressure treated likes to eat steel even the new stuff that's not suppose to.
    I was thinking for strength but maybe the yellow pine as it is a pretty strong grade too. Just not that soft white stuff they have. When the pressure treat is real wet it is pretty gross to handle and drill too.
    Avoids a lot of handling of that nasty pressure treat chemical too.
    Last edited by danielplace; 06-04-2020 at 05:54 PM.

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    Re: Ceiling Mounted Chain Hoist

    Quote Originally Posted by danielplace View Post
    I was thinking for strength but maybe the yellow pine as it is a pretty strong grade too. Just not that soft white stuff they have.
    Avoids a lot of handling of that nasty pressure treat chemical too.
    Yeah, yellow pine, any good doug fir without big knots in it would be decent, we have a couple of pressure treating factories in the area and they use the worst lumber for their stock and the treat makes it brittle anyways.

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    Re: Ceiling Mounted Chain Hoist

    Quote Originally Posted by Shootr View Post
    I think the biggest question I still have for the group is which 2x4's to bolt into? All along a single big one, or into 7 separate 2x4's that closely terminate into the long N/S truss bottom.
    Didn't realize how light duty the track and all is. I would use separate cross piece for each hanger but have the all thread come out close to the truss not the center of the cross boards.

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    Re: Ceiling Mounted Chain Hoist

    Do you know your snow load/live load.
    300 pounds should ok.
    If your garage is 20ft span and the rafters are 2ft and snow load of 20 total max. weight is 800 pounds now for center load need cut in 1/2 or max is 400 lb.
    But typically you use more than one rafter and that is your safety factor . This just only a ruff estement.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Shootr View Post
    I'd appreciate any input, ideas, and warnings for this project.

    I want to mount some kind of hoist to the ceiling in my garage. The ceiling is sheet rocked, the ceiling joists run as shown with the green lines in the picture, and are 24" on center.

    Ideally I want to shoot for 300lb safe capacity - I don't work with thicker than 1/4" material mostly, the only time I can see going over a 150lb lift is if I have some piece of equipment to unload from the truck bed (pressure washer, tiller, etc)

    At first blush I was thinking of lag bolting a 48" long 2 x 4 along one of the joists, with a sturdy eye bolt secured in the middle to hang a small chain hoist from.

    That white cabinet/table is on wheels, so I can roll it under a suspended object and lower it down to it.

    I guess I'm wondering if others have done creative, cool, innovative hoist mounts in a similar situation. Is my initial thinking/plan sound?

    Thanks in advance for any and all input.

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  31. #23
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    Re: Ceiling Mounted Chain Hoist

    Quote Originally Posted by danielplace View Post
    Didn't realize how light duty the track and all is. I would use separate cross piece for each hanger but have the all thread come out close to the truss not the center of the cross boards.
    Personally I wouldn't use the rafters at all, I would setup some type of floor support with an i-beam stretched across the garage to be used as a gantry.

    What forhire posted looks good if the ceiling will hold the weight.

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    Re: Ceiling Mounted Chain Hoist

    Quote Originally Posted by Louie1961 View Post
    I did just what you are describing, but my garage is under the house, so I was screwing into 2x12 floor joists. I sunk an eye hook into a 2x4 and used 4 inch screws to attach the 2x4 into 3 joists. Lifts a 400 lb welder no sweat, but just for safety sake I stay clear of what I am lifting.
    Quote Originally Posted by BaTu View Post
    I have to agree,,, 300lbs is Nothing really and you're over doing it (think of a refrigerator sitting above that spot. How concerned would you be about it's support? )

    I had a 12' scrap of 3" I-beam and need to pick-up and stack rows of these Fireworks Pods I make (we shoot professional shows and these are groups of tubes) that weigh @200lbs.. I took a HF "hoist" (800lb cap. for @$80) and put some rollers on it. I attached the beam to the joists (really more collar ties spaced 4' apart) with angle iron on the top, but you could just use a plate and lag thru the sheetrock (maintaining the Fire Code) into your joists.

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    I've been researching the strength of the various hanging methods and balancing that against practicality and do-ability...

    I'm going with the lag bolt method straight into the 2x4 trusses with this reasoning:

    *The 1/4" thick channel hanger brackets are rated at 1200lbs each. There will be 6 of those every 2' holding a 10' long channel:
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    *A 1/4" x 4" lag bolt has a pullout rating of 255lbs/inch of thread (3" x 255 = 765lbs for each bolt). There will be (4) of those and (1) 3/8" lag bolt at each end (305lbs/inch pullout rating). So with a bolt every 24" (6 total) in the channel, the safety factor is 7 or 8 conservatively for a 300lb load. Also, the wood is "Arizona air-dried" for 41 years, it is done moving, shrinking, etc.


    *The channel is 12ga steel and stout as well, no worries there. A single 4-wheel trolley has a working rating of 600lbs.

    Besides it being summer in Phoenix and the attic is as miserable as it gets, access is just too tight for me to get around up there. Also, any lumber would have to be in pieces - I took an 8' 1x2 and couldn't get it over to the mounting area - I was always hitting the ceiling, the floor or another 2x4 in the trusses. Patience goes out the window pretty fast when I'm overheating.

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    Re: Ceiling Mounted Chain Hoist

    Quote Originally Posted by Shootr View Post
    I've been researching the strength of the various hanging methods and balancing that against practicality and do-ability...

    I'm going with the lag bolt method straight into the 2x4 trusses with this reasoning:

    *The 1/4" thick channel hanger brackets are rated at 1200lbs each. There will be 6 of those every 2' holding a 10' long channel:
    *A 1/4" x 4" lag bolt has a pullout rating of 255lbs/inch of thread (3" x 255 = 765lbs for each bolt). There will be (4) of those and (1) 3/8" lag bolt at each end (305lbs/inch pullout rating). So with a bolt every 24" (6 total) in the channel, the safety factor is 7 or 8 conservatively for a 300lb load. Also, the wood is "Arizona air-dried" for 41 years, it is done moving, shrinking, etc.


    *The channel is 12ga steel and stout as well, no worries there. A single 4-wheel trolley has a working rating of 600lbs.

    Besides it being summer in Phoenix and the attic is as miserable as it gets, access is just too tight for me to get around up there. Also, any lumber would have to be in pieces - I took an 8' 1x2 and couldn't get it over to the mounting area - I was always hitting the ceiling, the floor or another 2x4 in the trusses. Patience goes out the window pretty fast when I'm overheating.
    So your going to lag bolt uni-strut under the single truss and hang off it ? Nice !! Lol. I wouldn't no matter if it would hold or not. Not off a single 2 X 4 without doing anything in the attic I wouldn't but just me I guess.

    Since it already has a solid strut to run on I wouldn't even bolt the strut up there but just get lag/studs and large fender washers and some all thread couplings. Sure would look neater than strut on the ceiling too. Probably wouldn't hang as low as hanging off 1 1/2" strut and would cost less.

    The only downside it accurate layout of the studs but that wouldn't be too hard since the brackets slide on the uni-track so all will adjust out anyhow.

    Predrilling the entire depth for the lags is imperative. If they split the truss they won't hold jack.

    https://www.mcmaster.com/lag-studs/

    https://www.mcmaster.com/coupling-nu...upling-nuts-9/
    Last edited by danielplace; 06-04-2020 at 08:25 PM.

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