The three pictures
below give you an idea of the head height and the skeleton and how
it operates, though I rarely ran it up that high. Made the lumber
racks too hard to reach and more area for the radiant heat to heat.
A full 8 foot.
Painting. Yuck! The hydraulic
system will stop at any place and hold still while painting.
The welds were ground
flat where the stainless sheet was to be screwed on.
Each of the two extension wings to extend the roof and the floor
moves independently. The height of the main structure also moves
independent of the wings, and is raised by the large, red, vertical
hydraulic cylinders at each end of the trailer. The large blue round
pipes about 6 inches to the outside of the vertical hydraulic cylinders
have another pipe inside of them which is what keeps the whole structure
rigid when opened (they're the ones almost touching the roof). The
home made trusses are welded to each end wall which is welded to
the outer vertical blue pipes. The roof is Lexan for natural lighting
during the day.
In above picture
you can see that the floor is dropped down by the end hydraulic
cylinders that are inside the trailer. The top structure is up
a couple of feet. The horizontal bar in the foreground will be
sitting on the trailer floor when the top is all the way down.
You can just barely see (also in the foreground) the connection
of the hydraulic cylinders that are outside the trailer, which
operate the roof extensions.
Above is a shot
of the outer cylinder partially opening the roof extension. Those
wings are really heavy and are hung from four hinges I made from
3/8" thick wall seamless mechanical tubing. The hinge pins
are 7/8th inch pipe. The cylinder is pushing on 2"x4"
tube steel which is 2" wider than the roof. So it locks around
the end wall when it is shut.
The reason for
the huge hinges is that both the floor extensions and the roof
extensions act as trusses when closed and on the road. So all
the forces of the combined bumps and sways are transferred through
the hinge pins to or from the frame and trusses.
There is only
one valve that operates all 4 big cylinders that raise the whole
thing up. The hydraulic oil comes out of the pump and goes through
a "geared flow divider" that separates the oil into
4 "equal" parts by volume - not pressure. So if there
is more weight on one cylinder , it will still go up as fast as
all the other ones. If not done this way, and done by equal pressure
instead of equal volume, then the cylinder with the lightest load
would go up faster than all the others and cause the thing to
rack and then self destruct, or get so stuck I could never get
it back down.
The 4 things
sitting almost on the tongue are adjustable pressure relief valves
for each of those 4 big cylinders. The flow dividers have what
is called "leakage" and the 4 "equal" parts
are not exactly equal. So I stuck those in there so that I could
even up all the 4 cylinders when I shut the trailer. They schreech
like hell when they bypass oil back to the reservoir when I even
up all the cylinders.
The gauge you
see on the oil filter is a differential pressure gauge that tells
me when the oil needs changing. (About 6 years ago now.) Am I
an idiot or what?
The gauge facing
to the front is a straight pressure gauge to give me the total
system pressue reading. When I designed the hydraulic system (after
I learned how hydraulics work), I realized that the starting point
was electricity. I wanted a system that could operate on a 20
Amp 110/120 volt circuit so I could use a generator (or a kitchen
house circuit) to open it if necessary. So 20 amps @ 110/120 was
my starting point. The motor is only 2HP continuous duty cycle
and draws just over 20 AMPs on 110. I have it wired 220 so it
only draws half that per leg, but I can change it to 110 real
quick in an emergency.
Then I just kept
working up the line, juggling pump pressures against pump volume
and computing different cylinder volumes till I got the max speed
out of 20 amps. I bought a 2 stage pump, and it goes into low
gear when it gets cold - but it still opens the trailer even when
it's below zero out. Just takes twice as long.
You can imagine the
weight that is on those 4 big cylinders.
Here's a picture
of it taken from the middle towards the back door (the Mosler
safe door) with the top structure closed all but a couple inches.
You can see the green thickness plane's head sticking up. Note
the 220 outlets on the left side about 14" up from the floor,
one partially hidden behind the steel diagonal. They will be up
at about 5' high when the roof is raised.The
old shaper is next to it then a stand and the table saw in the
I gave that shaper
away to a buddy of mine, and replaced it with a good Italian shaper.
The Italians make shapers and power feeds second only to the Germans,
and at a fraction the cost. Two halogen lights are on the end
wall (two more on the other end) and what look like light fixtures
on the sides are 4' long radiant heaters like sawyers use in all
the little sawmills up here. They use one - I use six, having
been born in Alabama and lived in the Everglades the first 13
years of my live. So I have 24 linear feet of heat in there.
I used to turn
the heat on with the shop closed when it was real cold. One day
I had to leave for some crisis or another and forgot about it.
When I came back and opened up, a ring of toilet bowl wax with
3" screws in it was a puddle dripping all over everywhere.
This is looking
to the front. I hadn't put in the lumber rack hanging from the
ceiling when this pic was taken. My overhead air is not in either,
that's compressed air - not air conditioning . That's a 100amp
service entrance behind the jointer.
Here is looking
from the jointer side with all the windows open. I have the
rack in place now. The good lumber goes on top of the stainless
round tubing. I didn't want the stock touching regular steel
because I was afraid that nightime condensation would rust it
and cause those black/purple stains on high tanin stock. Under
it is 1x2 rectangular regular steel tubing that I stick clamps
into and onto.
Here is looking
a little toward the front. The chop saw pops out of the cantilevered
stand when I run long stock through the shaper that has to go
out the window.You can see the other window in line with the
table saw. The long skinny window is for the jointer which has
it's outfeed bed just peeking into the picture on the right.
My entry ramp is coming up on the wing in the right of the picture.
shaped thing right beneath the outfeed rollers is a hole in
the floor. Under it is a piece of steel welded to the trailer
frame like a keyhole. Four pieces of angle iron with an identical
hole in each is welded to the base of each machine. Those two
angle looking pieces of steel on the floor just beyond the shaper
have heavy compression springs between washers and cross pins
holding them in. I position the machines over the holes in the
floor, shove those spring contraptions through the holes, turn
them 90 degrees and they snap into a slot underneath the trailer.
That way, I don't have to use a bunch of straps etc to get the
show on the road.
saw is a Vega I bought back in '79. I don't think they make
them any more. They were too expensive to make here compared
to Deltas and Powermatics, and frankly not worth the extra money
and weight. The roller stands are supported by the steel tubing
that is in the racks on the saw. Those legs fit into larger
steel tubing welded to the bottom of the saw. The rollers extend
around the corner of the saw (or not, depending on what I'm
doing), since each can be used separately.
are perfectly aligned and registered off the saw itself, they
never cause the stock to track wrong, like most roller stands.
brackets above the jointer are really handy for when I'm joining
stock. No moving around. The stock goes from the lower set to
the upper set: and then from the upper set to the lower set
till I'm done with that operation. The colorful cord plugged
into the 4 way outlet up top towards the left feeds a 4 way
outlet out at the end of the extension roof. That way the stuff
I use on the cantilevered bench can be plugged in overhead -
chop saw, router, etc. There are 4 four ways on each extension
wing as well as four on the bottoms of each truss. So I have
64ea 110 outlets overhead. I don't like tripping on cords and
have at least 4 outlets within reach without moving no matter
where I am standing in the trailer. All my 220 outlets are on
the end walls and move up to good height when the trailer is
for all the color on those things is to remind me to remove
them before closing up the shop. Crushing injuries to various
components were a hazzard for the guys on my crew that used
to shut down when I was off the job bidding another or something.
What is at chest height when open is at floor height when closed.
The closing force is about 50,000 lbs.
Dust sucker outside.
Chop saw bed sticking out it's peep hole. Incidentally, the chop
saw beds are white matt formica (good for sketching on) glued to
Dow Blue and glued and screwed with stainless Eurohinge screws into
a rabetted band of apitong that used to be my truck bed. 1/8th"
plywood is on the bottom side attached the same way. They are super
light, and do not deflect even with Tom ( who weighs about 240)
sitting in the middle. The only entry door (when the trailer is
closed) is the Mosler Safe door, seen above the drum sander, that
I scrounged from the job where I built the trailer,and cut down
with a torch to fit.
Drum sander - which I
gave away last year. Ramp and door way.
On a job. Nice day.
The only limit to stock length on any equipment or tool is external obstacles.
Give me a shout when you
get a chance.