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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Posts
    10

    Material for a crane.

    I have a large project coming up in the near future, making a flat bed for 2005 Dodge ram 2500. The bed took a hit recently, the body shop couldn't actually fix the bed side because there wasn't enough internal structure to weld to. The bed is rotting out, holes in the corner and rusted through above the wheels. So when I go to build the bed, one addition I want to make, is a jib crane. Yes, I realize you can buy one. Not interested in that, as I would have to deal with the hassle of lesser materials, and reworking the crane. I plan to make the crane unlock, and fold down into the back end of the flatbed. I looked at other jib cranes, and have to ask, has anyone built one that is equal to or better than the ones offered? What materials did you use, and how much have you lifted with it? I plan to also have a leg and foot that can be extended and lowered into place as needed for support. The crane when in operation mode, would be located on the passenger side of the bed. I plan to extend the bed about 9 inches past the original length, which is a little over 8'. If you have useful ideas on increasing it's strength, or reducing the weight, I'd love to hear it! - Unholy.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Location
    Northern Colorado
    Posts
    119
    Any material you purchase from a steel supply warehouse is going to be more than enough strength wise for a crane. We have fabricated a couple in our shop for walkin customers. All main support pieces were tube steel, either square or rectangle, depending on customer choice. Nothing less than 5/16 thickness, but 3/8 is ideal. All other attachments are a matter of personal choice on your part or whoever fabricates the crane. I haven't looked on youtube but there is probably some good info there. Perhaps if you drew up a schematic of you project and posted a pic or drawing, more info might come your way. The vehicle suspension is also a concern. Will it be adequate to support what you may want to lift?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Posts
    10
    The truck has had more than a ton in the bed, I am sure the new flatbed will be stronger and more supportive. I do plan on upgrading the suspension. I am looking at a crane similar to a cherry picker, but thicker material, not as thin walled. I am considering 3/16 to 1/4 wall. I need to be able to reach 54" inches into the bed, thought about using rectangular tube also. I want to be able to load at least half a ton into the bed with the crane.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Posts
    1,460
    Might go to GOOGLE IMAGES site and do a little looking for inspiration/ideas... "Truck Bed Crane" is decent search string to start with....

    Dale
    Lives his life vicariously through his own self.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Posts
    10
    Thanks Dale! Yes, I have already, never really found anything like what I am thinking of or wanting. I searched for hours, using many different terms. Looks more and more like I'm on my own with this one.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Northern Cal.
    Posts
    1,608
    Quote Originally Posted by Unholy View Post
    Thanks Dale! Yes, I have already, never really found anything like what I am thinking of or wanting. I searched for hours, using many different terms. Looks more and more like I'm on my own with this one.

    I've got a jib boom/hoist arrangement I made for the entrance to my shop. The main boom is 3x3 by 3/16ths. Ive picked over 800 with it at 80 inches. I tested it to 1150lb with a dynamometer and due to deflection (bending) I decided to put a personal limit of 800lbs on it. I did pick 758 a couple of times out at the end which is another two feet via a two and a half inch insert. Violated my own rules there. It uses a regular tall jack like the engine hoist. Now all that is the boom only. Not the riser.

    Laying out in the yard is an old manufactured truck hoist that has a limit tag on it of 1200 for a 60 inch boom. It looks like two cold rolled C channels stitched together to make a 2 & 1/4 inch by 5 inch rectangle with a full length insert. About 3/16ths thick. Of course the base is all a large unit with a winch incorporated into it so it's tough to glean any structural detail out of. Old manual swivel deal.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Posts
    10
    Hi Sandy, sounds nice! The further out the boom goes the more weight becomes a issue. Lucky for me, I don't need to go quite that far! That is pretty good amount of weight for that far out. Do you have pictures of these units by chance? Thanks for the reply!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Northern Cal.
    Posts
    1,608
    Quote Originally Posted by Unholy View Post
    Hi Sandy, sounds nice! The further out the boom goes the more weight becomes a issue. Lucky for me, I don't need to go quite that far! That is pretty good amount of weight for that far out. Do you have pictures of these units by chance? Thanks for the reply!
    Here's the only two I have of the pickup crane. Just got it the other day. Don't have a clue what to do with it but it was a freeby so couldn't just let it go to the dumpster. I guess it's been about 15 years stored in a dark corner and they decided to pitch it. It's a Venturo crane. The V and O were of a different color and faded out.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Northern Cal.
    Posts
    1,608
    Here's a couple of pics of my shop door boom. It's changed and weathered over these few years but not much time goes by that it doesn't get used for something. Just swapping lawn mower blades makes it worth doing.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Northern Cal.
    Posts
    1,608
    One more for giggles. I built it so I could swing heavy stuff through the garage door into the garage rather than dolly it, slide it or drag it.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Posts
    10
    That is a very nice set up Sandy! Well made, glad to see some good use also. That is some reach. This might be over kill, but I am thinking, 1/4 wall 2 x 4 or so with a max reach of 60" When the crane boom is down, I need it to found almost together to the height isn't to tall, so I can fold down and out of the way.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Northern Cal.
    Posts
    1,608
    Quote Originally Posted by Unholy View Post
    That is a very nice set up Sandy! Well made, glad to see some good use also. That is some reach. This might be over kill, but I am thinking, 1/4 wall 2 x 4 or so with a max reach of 60" When the crane boom is down, I need it to found almost together to the height isn't to tall, so I can fold down and out of the way.

    If I had to buy some thing new, I think qtr wall 2x4 would be it. That shop boom was built with all freeby material on hand. I'm sure you've got a good grip on what you need to do. Of course you know as well as anybody that the riser/pivot is where much of the stresses end up. That's where the forces get reversed and the boom becomes a pry bar and multiplies that 1000lbs to several. Let us know what you come up with.

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