Moving large machines...sanity check


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It's here.  They built a tank around this thing. 

Here's the problem...unless I'm missing something, I don't see how a pallet jack forks can be inserted into the ends of the crate.  To get it through my 48" fence gate I'll have to take the machine through lengthwise. 

For future reference, the crate is 56" long and 48" wide.  I'll probably have to saw off an inch or two of the crate's 4x4 base to reduce that 48" width. 

I just called "Two Men and a Truck" for a quote.  $450.  Insane.  Not happening. 

Maybe I SHOULD get it off the crate and onto the mobile base in the garage and roll it around on ply after all.  This mobile base is pretty beefy... 

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That was fun.  At least it would have been if it was thirty degrees warmer.  It was really easy to drive.  I took it super slow, but it drove very well.  Guess what came with narrow pallet f

So did the lube stain the wood around the gate ?

I was going to buy an engine hoist to lift the machine up and onto the floor, but I'm not sure I need to do that.  I already bought a mobile base, a Porta Mate 3500 instead of Hammer's mobility kit. 

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Mobile base will work, but not sure how much the wheels would suffer.   Looks like it should be pretty easy to narrow the base, but how tippy would that make it?

I kind of lost track.   Do you have a pallet jack?

It looks to me like it will slide.   We have moved similar with a couple of moving dollies under each end, which is our normal method once we get something inside a building.  I like the crate design.  I wouldn't change it much until I had it close to where it's going.

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4 minutes ago, Tom King said:

Mobile base will work, but not sure how much the wheels would suffer.   Looks like it should be pretty easy to narrow the base, but how tippy would that make it?

I kind of lost track.   Do you have a pallet jack?

It looks to me like it will slide.   We have moved similar with a couple of moving dollies under each end, which is our normal method once we get something inside a building.  I like the crate design.  I wouldn't change it much until I had it close to where it's going.

I don't have a pallet jack and the closest Home Depot stores that rent them are out of stock.  I don't have moving dollies, but I have a Harbor Freight within a fifteen minute drive.  I could definitely pick up some dollies and get this up on them.  Ratchet strap the crate to the dollies.  Should be plenty stable.

The mobile base has quality 3" ball bearing wheels, two fixed and two swivel.  I really think it would work, but once this thing is out of the crate there is no going back and there is no plan B.  The crate is going to offer a lot of protection.

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2 minutes ago, bleedinblue said:

That won'tl work with the open design of the crate, at least not length wise. 

Can't take the wide guys off and turn them 90 degrees or just eliminate them entirely? They are there to get forks under the main part and don't really do much structurally from my observation.

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We've screwed crates to moving dollies more than a few times.   I think I have half a dozen similar to this, but a little smaller:

https://www.tractorsupply.com/tsc/product/jobsmart-800-lb-furniture-dolly?cm_vc=-10005

Screws and straps would be pretty safe, and you may even be able to ramp it over any threshold once you get it to the basement.

3" wheels on the base sound good, but like you, I like the looks of that crate.   If you have a couple of strong guys to help, the mobile base shouldn't be much of a worry.

We've slid heavier than that across plywood behind a riding lawnmower.

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2 minutes ago, Chestnut said:

Can't take the wide guys off and turn them 90 degrees or just eliminate them entirely? They are there to get forks under the main part and don't really do much structurally from my observation.

Potentially.  But if I get those off, I can just go back to plan A and use a (narrow) pallet jack. 

2 minutes ago, Tom King said:

We've screwed crates to moving dollies more than a few times.   I think I have half a dozen similar to this, but a little smaller:

https://www.tractorsupply.com/tsc/product/jobsmart-800-lb-furniture-dolly?cm_vc=-10005

Screws and straps would be pretty safe, and you may even be able to ramp it over any threshold once you get it to the basement.

May be the thing to do.

Gonna chew on it a bit.  I'm home alone with the kid so not much I can do now anyway.

At this point this is feeling pretty silly, as Tom pointed out days ago 700 pounds is heavy, but it's not ridiculously heavy. 

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15 minutes ago, bleedinblue said:

Potentially.  But if I get those off, I can just go back to plan A and use a (narrow) pallet jack. 

Lol good point. My brain isn't working well right now, some silly developer is giving me a headache. I was moving my joitner around the other night like it didn't weigh 700 lbs. A good solid lever and a properly placed fulcrum can do a lot of work. At least your joitner started out on the ground. I had to bring mine down 18" off my trailer before i could start trying to move it around.

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Something I have heard of people using for top-heavy long-skinny lathe moving is attaching trailer jacks (3x) with wheels, e.g. attaching something like the below to the pallet and lifting it up and wheeling it around. No personal experience, bit it seems a possibility:

 

https://www.northerntool.com/shop/tools/product_200631762_200631762?cm_mmc=Google-pla&utm_source=Google_PLA&utm_medium=Trailers %2B Towing > Trailer Jacks > Marine %2B Swivel Jacks&utm_campaign=Ironton&utm_content=44062&gclid=Cj0KCQiA8_PfBRC3ARIsAOzJ2urW51EL8NeCvuihx-ANkeCiUiPBopkdtc5dlD3Y3wAJe7HqdMvskToaAiykEALw_wcB

 

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Blue, from the photos I think you could get a pallet jack (narrow?) Through the two holes on the narrow side.  You have to clear the 4x4 skid, but these jacks will typically raise up 6 inches so that should give you enough to clear the 4x4 and still be able to lift the pallet.  Pallet jack around me rents pretty cheaply, but no guarantees.  

If it works you can then explore what you might need to do to shorten the skids.  

I gotta say I do like the trailer jack idea.  Maybe with 4 jacks on the narrow ends.  You'd end up buying these, but then that's an incentive to buy more big power tools that come in crates.

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Those trailer tongue jacks aren't the easiest rolling wheels, but not a bad idea.  I wish you were closer to here.  We have at least eight different ways to move that machine, including the tongue jack method.  One of the local boat dealers gave me a small pile of them a couple of weeks ago.  He borrowed my appliance hand truck, and they were in the back of his truck when he brought it back.  He saw a pile of scrap metal I'd been putting aside for Mike, and had pulled them off some trailers they were scrapping. 

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The trailer jack idea is pretty genius I think. 

I reserved a Bobcat for tomorrow and am picking it up in the morning though.  The price for a half day is reasonable, and it's the one option that will lend me other options if I get in a bind.  The ground is frozen so the yard isn't in too much danger. 

Plus, it SHOULD make the process fun. 

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imagesBobcat-MT85.425.jpg

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6 minutes ago, Tom King said:

Will the Bobcat have standard controls, or joystick controls?  How much experience do you have operating one?

I have no idea on the controls.  It's a mini track loader, a small machine by your standards.  I have zero experience, as you probably guessed.  The reviews and videos I've read/seen say this machine is very easy to operate though...lets hope that's accurate! 

*Here's the controls. Looks pretty straight forward. 

MT85controlsaskew.58aa09874ca20.jpg

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Hold the press! I was thinking that larger pneumatic tires would get you over ground easier. Then I thought of either hand truck/dolly or wheelbarrow tires. Then thinking of wheelbarrow, why not? Two sets of these thru your crate/pallet, then strapped to the pallet. Excuse the non professional drawing. 

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30 minutes ago, bleedinblue said:

I have no idea on the controls.  It's a mini track loader, a small machine by your standards.  I have zero experience, as you probably guessed.  The reviews and videos I've read/seen say this machine is very easy to operate though...lets hope that's accurate! 

*Here's the controls. Looks pretty straight forward. 

MT85controlsaskew.58aa09874ca20.jpg

Blue, will that get thru your gate? 

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5 minutes ago, bleedinblue said:

Yup, it's only 36" wide, and it SHOULD be able to lift the Hammer above the fence as I drive through it. 

My emergency backup plan is to remove an 8' section of my fence.

Helluva deal! Good luck bud. 

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I've never run one of those.   I was thinking a regular Bobcat that you sit in.   I'd feel better about moving the fence than lifting it over, and even better still about shortening those sides of the base, setting it on plywood, and pushing it through the gate with it.

I've never seen controls like those.  Looks like the left one is direction, and the right one is boom up and down, and bucket dump.  I'd probably only feel comfortable with it after operating it for an hour or so.  It's good that you can take a hand off the right one, and drive it where you want it to go with the left hand. 

I was scared of a joystick controlled Bobcat for someone with little experience.  With those, each hand controls speed, and direction of each track, and also boom and bucket in opposite hands that are also controlling speed and direction.  Regular controls use one foot for the boom, the other for the bucket, and hands are only for direction and speed.

In any case, a loader is easier to control than an excavator.  An excavator is more complicated than flying an airplane.  A Bobcat, about the same.

That middle red one is an important control too.  Don't use any more of that one than you need to.

I'll stop giving unasked for advice now.   Good luck!!!

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