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Theo
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Discussion Starter #1
Don't want to reinvent the tire, so been googling truck cranes, for ideas I could use to make one. Found one that looked like great inspiration, but it was on pinterest, and, of course, the link to the article on it was nonexistent, so all I have is a photo. However, did find this article on making one. Not really what I am looking for, similar, but not quite. Reason I want a crane is free firewood is often available, simply for picking up. Don't want for firewood, but to start making a few Tikis again. Can't lift much anymore, so need a crane. I figure maybe some of you might be interested in making one too, so here is the link. https://suncatcherstudio.com/truck-crane/

Actually, I may make at least part of a crane with wood, but my ultimate goal would be one entirely out of wood, less a hydraulic lift or winch. But an all metal build wouldn't hurt my feelings.
 

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That’s pretty ingenious. I think putting some grease where it articulates would sound better lol
 

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Although not a truck mounted style crane, take a look at Matt Cremona's trailer mounted hoist for loading and unloading logs.
He shows it at about 7:20 minutes. I have no idea what size wood that you are looking for, but something like this (in a smaller version) could be installed in a pickup truck much easier than a single post crane.

Charley
 

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Although not a truck mounted style crane, take a look at Matt Cremona's trailer mounted hoist for loading and unloading logs.
He shows it at about 7:20 minutes. I have no idea what size wood that you are looking for, but something like this (in a smaller version) could be installed in a pickup truck much easier than a single post crane.

Charley[/

It must be nice to be young. :smile:
 

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I have no idea what size wood that you are looking for, but something like this (in a smaller version) could be installed in a pickup truck much easier than a single post crane.

Charley
How would you propose mounting an arch in a pick up box?
Rob
 

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You can pick up used patient lifts for cheap, or a brand new HF portable engine crane for a reasonable price. Then all you have to do is weld a pipe to a plate and bolt that into the truck.
 

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Theo
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Discussion Starter #7
I have no intention of putting any type of lift in my truck bed. I will likely go for something along the lines of the link I posted. Except simpler, and with a jack or something under the end to support it. The trailer arch wasn't a bad idea, but I think should have been wider at the base. If I were going to pick up large logs for sawing I would have a trailer, but would have a large hydraulic crane, of one sort or another - I don't have space for a bandsaw mill, or to store logs, so I am not even considering how I would do that.

I'm thinking a square tubing to go into the hitch. Then tubing going to the side of the truck, with the base of the crane itself. I think round tubing is the way to go, but not sure yet if I would want to use a hand winch, electric winch, or hydraulic lift, to raise logs - I think likely around 100 lbs would be the max I would be lifting, but will try to get something that will lift up to 4-500 lbs, just in case. I wouldn't be looking for anything longer than about 4 ft long likely, but never know. I am getting it all together in my mind, little by little. I don't really care much for the link I posted, or the arch on the trailer. But I keep searching for pictures, and eventually it will all come together. Oh yes, a chain fall would be very handy, but the one the guy was using was even more irritating noisewise then the turning of the crane.
 

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A come-a-long would be much better choice for the crane. A winch doubles the vertical load on the crane head. Anything mounted in the bed is a non starter for most people. I have been thinking of a front corner mount jib crane if I see a good way to transmit the weight load down to the frame. In my last Chevy I had a rope tied to the frame and up between the cab and the box because there was nothing substantial to tie down to. Newer trucks seem to have tie downs but they are pretty flimsy IMO.
Rob
 

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A decade ago, I went out gathering rocks for landscaping our back yard. Was limited to what I or my wife and I could lift. Thought about a truck bed lift, but couldn't quite work it out. His use of a trailer and a power winch is pretty creative. I compute we brought between 45 to 50 tons from the desert to our back yard. Most of the larger rocks are way too heavy for me to lift today. That trunk he move must weigh at least a ton.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
To put a crane in your pickup bed, you would need a lot of bracing. If I were going to put something like that in a truck bed, I would rather go with something like this. I think it would treat the truck bed better, and do the job well. I won't be making anything like this for what I want to do.
 

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How would that gantry be attached to the box? The frame rails are well inside the fenders and that is where the weight must be supported.
Rob
 

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Discussion Starter #12
How would that gantry be attached to the box? The frame rails are well inside the fenders and that is where the weight must be supported.
Rob
Dunno. Depends on who was doing it, I would say. I know of people who just drill holes thru the bed floor and bolt in a jib crane, or weld it in. That can tear a bed up. One like I posted, I'd run braces from side to side, and bolt to the frame. I have a rather nice truck, with a nice bed liner, and I have no intention of mounting any type of crane in the bed. My goal is likely to be something that uses the hitch, or even mount one on a trailer, not going to mod my truck.
 

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That looks like a great plan. I have been looking for something like that to load and unload the generator from my box truck when I am doing shows. Looks like I will be buying some more steel and firing up the mig welder. Thanks for sharing.
 

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I like the box crane idea, but think there is a small problem of getting the load over the gate and onto the bed. Making the load move really complicates this.

So If I were doing this, I'd make a stand you can put slip together, lift the load and back the truck or trailer back under the raised load. You could make the stand so it breaks down easily. Could even be an A Frame design with welded tubes to insert and hold the legs. This would consist of a couple of A shaped plates welded to a cross piece that's wider than the vehicle or trailer. Weld 18-24 inches of capped pipe to the A shaped pieces and insert the legs as needed.

I'd probably add a solid steel truss under the cross piece with an opening to hook onto, or at least a really strong hook in the middle. You could add a 12 v motorized lift or a come along to raise the load.

Keep the lift stationary, move the vehicle. Easier than trying to move a load over a stationary lip.
 

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Backing under the load is standard operating procedure when you have off board lifting facilities. To make such a device requires lengths that will not fit in the box of the pick up so they have to be made up from shorter pieces. The hitch mounted crane, with or without a leg down to the ground is much easier. My wish to put one on the front corner of the box is so that it can be left in place and not use box space. Call me lazy.
Rob
 

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Discussion Starter #16 (Edited)
Well, for what I want, a hitch mounted lift will work just fine. Something I can break down, store in the shop or somewhere, toss in the truck, assemble quickly, no individual part being excessively heaby. Simple, easily built, inexpensive. If you plan it right, may even be able to make a bolt together version rather than welding - I think I'll go for welding tho. Right now, I'm thinking a hand crank winch, or pulleys, maybe with log hooks.

BUT, for larger chunks of wood, like the guy in the video, I forgot the most important rule. K.I.S.S. Keep It Simple Stupid. Don't need all the fancy stuff. Get a low trailer, or make one, then put a ramp at the end, and pull whatever up on it. Probably no harder than what that guy did, and "I" think it would be faster. Or, have sides that lower, or whatever, to make a ramp, and pull whatever on from the side, likely even faster and easier. Basically, a winch is all you would need. Something like the first picture, the guy pulled that in from the side with the winch, pulled the ramp up, and locked everything into place.

Or, you could go with something along the second picture. Short logs, long logs, just adjust length.

But for me, I like the last one. A local company uses something similar to move large propane tanks, and works great. I would not attempt to carry more than one log, but for a large load, I think this would be easiest, and fastest, to load.

A winch, or chain fall, for any of these, would work. Or even pulleys. K.I.S.S. triumphs again.

That is not how I saved the pictures. They wound up 2, 3, 1.

Oh yeah, for myself, these are the type of log hooks I would prefer. Again, makable.
 

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I have a propane tank moving trailer. It is an open U shape made of 4x4x.375'' tubing and has 2 independent suspension wheels rated 3000 lbs each. There is a gantry with a big hand winch centred over the stub axles. After the load is suspended high enough you put cross bars under it and lower it onto them. I rarely use it because I have a tilting trailer amongst others, but I did bring home a 3000lb planer once. I once used it to lift a cow who was stuck in the mud out of reach of a front end loader.
Rob
 

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Well done Charley! Not having a sheet metal box to work around has many advantages for a work truck. For pick ups there are cranes that mount in a special bumper IIRC.
 
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