Topper Hoist?

I want to make a topper hoist for my garage. Then I can disconnect my topper and hoist it up to the ceiling out of the way. Lower it again to put it back on.
Does anyone have any suggestions? The topper weights around 180 pounds.
Thanks,
Charles
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Sure - pick up a manual winch, like the one in this link, and mount it to the wall. Run the cable through a pulley that you suspend from the ceiling, and make up two lengths of additional cable, with positive-locking clips on the ends (carabiners would work fine for this), that can clip to some mounting points on the top of the cap (attached to a ladder rack, or something similar). Slip these two cables through the hook of the winch, and crank it up. http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/ctaf/displayitem.taf?Itemnumber0905
Of course, if you're into a little more high-end, an electric winch bolted to the rafters would make things easier: http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/ctaf/displayitem.taf?ItemnumberD006
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I guy I know has one of the Harbor Freight jobs to remove the hardtop from his Prowler. He hung it from a large pipe on two Harbor Freight pneumatic tired casters. He just removed the tires and runs the wheels on the pipe. There is enough space where the tire was to allow the pipe to pass through. He can lift the top and just move it to the end of his garage. Works well.
Al
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Buy two canoe hoists ( or just one if you can rig a way to hook up) and you're done.
http://www.northerntool.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/ProductDisplay?storeIdi70&productIdf9132&Rf9132
--
Budd Cochran

Romans 3:23, Romans 6:23,
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Been there, Done that... used 2 pulleys on the rafters and lifted from a 2x4" across the bed rails under each end of the cap...
Bottom line, not worth the trouble, besides the fact that I'd rather have the cap bolted to the truck as opposed to clamping it on so it can be easily removed.. It also looks REALLY funny from the street, seeing a camper shell stuck to the garage ceiling.. *g*
NOTE: if you do it... remember that it's going to catch dust, dryer lint, etc.... and Murphy's law says that it WILL make a mess when you take it down.. *g*
Mac
https://home.comcast.net/~mac.davis https://home.comcast.net/~mac.davis/wood_stuff.htm
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mac davis wrote:

It was worthwhile for me because I could remove and store or re-install my cap without help. I had mine setup similar to you but I didn't use any pullys. I had 4 eye bolts screwed into the rafters over the garage stall, and two 2X4s with an eye bolt in each end. I used 4 cargo straps to pull the cap off.
--
Ken



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wrote:

well, you were in the Navy, Ken... whole different mindset... In the army we didn't do anything that required manual labor if it could be avoided.. *g*
BTW: I did that with my first shell, a lot of years ago... before I learned that if it was off, I didn't have anywhere to store all my junk.. *g* Had them on several trucks since and never taken one off..
Mac
https://home.comcast.net/~mac.davis https://home.comcast.net/~mac.davis/wood_stuff.htm
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I had one on the D-150 back when I had the truck an took it off rather quickly after nearly backing over a little girl that I couldn't see in the right hand mirror or thru the side windows on the topper ... but she was tall enough I could see her over the tailgate (topper open).
The bottom of the windows were 5" higher than the tailgate.
If she had walked with her parent thru the lot instead of running ahead, it wouldn't have happened either.
--
Budd Cochran

Romans 3:23, Romans 6:23,
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mac davis wrote:

I did it that way not to avoid the labor, but to minimize it enough to do the job alone safely. I know I can lift it myself from the inside but it's very awkward. I didn't want to risk dropping a fiberglass cap from the height of a 2500 4X4 bed. You still have to lift some of the weight by hand to cinch up the straps, but it's less than 100 lbs on each end. Lifting the cap from inside the truck bed to get the 2X4s in position is the hardest part, but even that is relatively easy due to your body position. Once the padded tape seal is broken the rest of the job is easy.

A crafty woodworker like you should be able to come up with a simple shelf to put over the 2X4s supporting the suspended cap. Think of it as a lower level "attic".
Also, I don't have any dust problems. My garage ceiling is textured so I always put an old blanket over the cap (think grey wool with the letters U.S. in the corner) before hoisting it tight against the ceiling. No scratches in the cap that way and any dust accumulation can be cleaned off of the blanket outside.
--
Ken



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wrote:

Actually, this garage already has a loft.... I could put the dakota cap up there if I cleared years of family stuff out of it, I guess... The Dakota looks and rides so much better with the cap that it hasn't been off since we got the truck in '01..
the other problem is that the garage is also the full time wood shop and even with a dust collector and air filter, things get pretty dusty in there... Mac
https://home.comcast.net/~mac.davis https://home.comcast.net/~mac.davis/wood_stuff.htm
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