|Project by KerwinLumpkins||posted 01-30-2016 06:00 PM||1373 views||2 times favorited||2 comments|
My large clamps were seriously in the way and I needed to store them properly. Of course, where is the question. I have a garage like space with steel bar framed overhead space. After seeing some posts like JL7’s, I thought I would set out to store them overhead.
JL7’s post on this topic
Mine looks very similar. Hacked together with relatively cheap materials. Not a pretty solution, but it works. The rack box is made of 3/4” plywood with pocket screw hole joinery. I cut out slotted “rack” features using my laser cutter and 1/4” plywood, though of course I could have cut with band saw. I wanted curves in the slots and my laser cutter does that faster and much prettier than I could do manually. The slotted racks are set in place with wooden triangular brackets. The “hinges” of the rack to a bar in the ceiling are also 3/4” plywood in two pieces. One piece is a slot that allowed me to just drop it over the bar, then I added the other half with made a closed circle. There are many other ways to do this. My method was just expedient and still very strong, so I did it.
Those clamps are heavy so I needed counter force to allow me to lift/lower them. I used 2 hefty springs I got at home depot. They are about $7 each. I used dual U clamps on the ceiling for each (I used 2 for redundant holding power). With those two springs, the weight of the clamps is largely offset, so that I am able to easily raise and lower the rack with one hand. These clamps (a combination of Bessey K models and some Groz models) weigh on average about 12 pounds each. I have 10 of them, so 120 pounds plus the plywood rack means about 150 pounds or so. I was going to use a counterweight system, but there is section where the concrete wall comes down a foot or so from the ceiling so I would have to rig a system of pulleys to get around that corner in order to have counterweight rack on the wall. So I went with springs. I estimate about 15 pounds of force needed after the springs to lift that rack back into the closed position.
Similar to JL7, I used a spring loaded latch to hold it closed. The spring ensures that it can’t easily come undone on its own. Though I have done tests where I suddenly release that clamp to ensure that if it does happen I won’t get my skull fractured. With those springs the rack comes down but at a controlled pace, not in “freight train” fashion. 3 weeks since installation and my skull is still intact, so I guess it’s okay. I still intend to add redundant latches to it anyway, since I don’t access these clamps that often.