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Tool question - Air / hydraulic ram conversion

Discussion in 'The Tool Shed' started by ZZ4x4, Jan 10, 2006.

  1. ZZ4x4

    ZZ4x4 1/2 ton status

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    Does anybody know if it is possible to convert a hand pump style hydraulic ram into one that will use a one way air/ hydraulic pump to activate? If so where would one connect the hydraulic line? There is the threaded release valve opening, but that seems like it would not send fluid to the right place. Where the hand pump plunger goes seems like the right place to hook up, but how would the parts connect. :dunno: HMMMM. Anyone attempted this?
     
  2. diesel4me

    diesel4me 1 ton status Premium Member

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    it can be done...

    I saw an engine crane a guy converted to a hydraulic pump..he used a power steering pump and an electric motor to drive the pump(mounted it under the "jack" or hydraulic cylinder--coupled the motor and pump together shaft to shaft,no pulley)...he did it by removing the "pump" you pump up by hand with the handle,it unscrewed from the cylinder..he made up a hose with the same threads and "O" ring at a hose shop...it went UP fine,lifted a V8 motor like nothing!---but as soon as the motor was shut off,it would come flying back down just as fast!:rolleyes:

    I think he was going to try using a "check valve",to stop that,he wasn't quite sure how to do it though..--

    I haven't been to his shop in a while,and I don't know if he suceeded ,or if he gave up on it..

    I think it could be done with a manual valve,or maybe one thats solenoid activated like on those dump body pump/resivoiur units use..you might need to tap the "return" line into that hole for the screw you loosen to lower the crane,in order for it to work..:confused: --you'd need it to "hold" the fluid from being forced back into the resivoiur,so the piston wont drop the load..and some way to release it back to the resivour via the valve,to lower the load..

    (one sure,easy way to do it would be to use a snowplow "valve body",and the cylinders off it as well..not sure if they would be a long enough stroke or not,but you'd be certain the hydraulic part would work fine!--you COULD buy a longer cylinder..:thinking: )..but like you,I'm cheap,and would rather use the "stock" engine crane cylinder,if possible..

    I have been tempted to try this myself,I have a spare engine crane I'd like to mount on my truck (minus the legs) and use it as a swivel hoist..they DO sell air AND hydraulic cylinders in Northern Tool's catolog,and they look pretty much the same as the "manual" type--its how they "modified" it we need to know!..

    I have a similar "crane" on a flatbed that used to be on my K20 I junked..its now made into a trailer,and has a small electric winch..but the winch alone isnt the hot setup ,it works,but is slow,limited in capacity,and the "boom" is always sticking upright,it has a huge turnbuckle to adjust the height,and its a PITA to move it to lower the boom arm..it could be lowered easy if it were hydraulic,plus it would have much greater lifting power,and be much faster,and not drain the battery as much.

    .(I could use a starter motor to power a pump,or use the electric snowplow pump I already have!)
    ..I can lift about 1000 lbs with the winch,but its straining pretty hard..(but I don't really lift anything heavier than that anyway)..

    At any rate,I'd get more advise from someone who really knows hydraulic curcuits and cylinders..I bet its not to difficult to figure out..if I had some hose fittings and valves,I'd be out in the shop playing with it..and figuring out how NOT to get the load dropped on top of me!..:eek1: ..it CAN be deadly playing with stuff like this!..BE CAREFUL!!..:crazy:
     
  3. ZZ4x4

    ZZ4x4 1/2 ton status

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    Thanks for the inputs. I'm trying to drive the hydraulic ram on a JD2 tubing bender. Currently I'm using my engine crane ram laid flat and I have to pump a bizillion times to bend each tube. HF sells a little foot activated air over hydro pump which is said to keep the pressure when you let off, so the ram shouldn't pull back until it's wanted. Thinking about using a big spring to retract the ram when the pressure is released. I'm wondering now if the little pressure release valve on the ram would also need to be opened and closed with each movement. That would be a pain. But I'm thinking if the plunger is removed and the pressure line is hooked up where it used to be that there should be an open channel to the cylinder making it extend with pressure and retract with no pressure (and not having to touch the release valve). Might be worth a shot ...
     
  4. diesel4me

    diesel4me 1 ton status Premium Member

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    Go for it!..

    We had a 100 ton press in the machine shop section of one parts store I worked at..it had nothing more than what appeared to be a huge "bottle" jack,like you'd use to lift a bulldozer,hooked up just as you and I discussed,by putting a hydraulic hose in place of where the "manual" pump usually went..it had huge springs to return the jack to its collapsed position,like overhead garage door springs!..I'm not 100% sure,but I think all you had to do was turn a knob on that "release" screw,to get it to return ..it must have had a check valve plumbed in somewhere..you wont need one for bending tubing though!..

    I bet in your application it would work --seeing you only need force applied in one direction,and dont need to "hold" it there.....

    As for a hoist though,I'd have to use the snowplow valve body setup,and use the "Lift"piston port only,as its the only one that would "hold" the load without it creeping or dropping(the power angle ones have bypasses so the blade WILL move if you mash something hard enough!):doah: ..either that or try jerry rigging manual valves up,and see if it'll work!..

    I'm getting old,and pumping those ram jacks up,hand cranking winches,and pull starting small engines make me feel like I'm about to have a heart attack or stroke..so I'm either upgrading to "power" everything,and electric start,pr having NOTHING pretty soon!..:rolleyes:

    Let me know if you try it,I'm interested to see if it works!..

    I just saw another home brew invention today..a guy with a riding mower,with a plow on it,that used a GM power steering pump,and an old monroe magnum 60 shock absorber for a hydraulic cylinder!..and it actually works!..has it plumbed with "ball valves" from Home Depot!.. :laugh:

    I had a friend who made a similar setup from a convertible top motor/pump and the lift piston from an old Caddy eldorado..it would lift the plow,AND both of us while standing on the blade!..plus he rigged it so it had down pressure too
    It worked great..I told the guy I saw today about that..said he's going to look for a convertible top piston instead!..he plans on using the GM P/S pump to power other stuff on the tractor too,like the lift for his rototiller,and mower deck..

    I was suprised drilling a hole in a shock and welding a fitting on made a hydro cylinder out of it,but then I remembere air shocks..!..guess they are the same difference really!..

    Hmmm..wonder if an air shock would be strong enough to bend tubing??:thinking: they will lift a 3 ton station wagon..:crazy:

    :crazy:
     

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