Woodturning and working with wood in general can be very
heavy. Many of us turners like to turn big, wet logs and these things
can be really large and heavy. It's also often true that not all of the
wood that we want to work with is sitting right next to our shops. We
have to go out and gather it. That means falling, cutting, loading,
transporting and storing it. The Log Lift that this article discusses
deals with the loading aspect of it.
This great homemade / shopmade tool is a an ancient one.
It's been used over the eons to help people lift loads larger than they could
easily do on their own. As you can see in the pictures below, the Log
Lift is basically just 2 - 2" x 6" x 8' long pieces of wood that is held
together with some short pieces of wood. There's a "shelf" made so that
the log doesn't slide down the Lift when you pick it up. The shelf needs
to be made so that, when the Lift is standing upright, it's just a little
higher than what you're wanting to load the logs onto. In this case,
it's the tailgate of a truck. To use the Log Lift, you simply (actually,
this is the hardest part!) place the log onto the Lift above and touching the
shelf. Then stand at the end of the Lift and pick it up. That's
it! You can make the Log Lift longer in order to get more mechanical
advantage but it can become impractical and difficult to transport out into
the field if it's too long.
As you can see in the pictures below, I have a very wet
half-log loaded onto the Log Lift. I estimated it to weigh about 200
lbs. I tried several times to lift it up onto the tailgate of the truck
myself but just couldn't manage it. So, I got out the Log Lift and,
well, you can see the results. Quick, easy and inexpensive!
Really, it was a LOT easier to lift those logs this way. It's not like
it's as easy as a hydraulic lift or something but at least it was so much
easier than trying to do it without any help. Try making one yourself
and give it a try.
* Here it is! The
Sawbuck modification for processing those logs / blanks out in the field!