Dumbwaiter project gone bad

I have an talanted engineering group here at work. We design and build equipment for in house use and a couple of devices that we sell.
To address a safety issue of carying parts and materials up to a mezanine, we designed a dumbwaiter. There were a lot of constraints such as missing electrical conduits, air ducts, roof girders, etc and the guys came up with a good design. It had to fit, and met the needs of the crew that would actually use it. Doors were located in the right place (with interlocks) and the heights were right, and so on.
We started to build the unit and all was well until the city was informed. Then red flags flew and we were told that we were unqualified, not licensed, etc etc.
I have since contacted several manufacturers of dumwaiters and they are not interested in either blessing our design, or providing a unit that will meet the requirements.
In the meantime our safety guy is nervous everytime an operator climbs the stairs with hardware and (hazardous) materials in hand.
Are there any PE's that have experience in lifts that would like to consult? We are in central Illinois
Thanks,
Bob
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Bonza wrote:

Just so you understand the city's concern, let me tell you a little story. The grade school/high school that I attended had a kitchen and lunchroom on the second floor. Because of overcrowding in the lunchroom, it was decided that the grade school, on the 1st floor, would eat lunch in their classrooms. This was around 1964.
A very talented maintainance man offered to build a dumbwaiter between the kitchen and the grade school hallway. The unit performed excellently and the maintainance man received much praise for his efforts. No accidents and no problems.
Fast forward to about the early '90's. The school, which was built in the 20's is empty and waiting to be converted into condominiums. A pair of boys break in and decide it would be fun to ride the dumbwaiter up to the kitchen. What exactly they did, I don't know, but one of them ended up crushed to death.
I'm sorry that I can't present any cites for this story, so don't ask. To the best of my knowledge it it true.
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On Tue, 24 Aug 2004 12:40:20 -0700, the renowned Jim Stewart

One of the local Chinese restaurants had one to carry food from the (IIRC) upstairs kitchen down to the restaurant level. A waiter was decapitated by it. Scary stuff, especially from a liability POV. You'll need a PE with specific knowledge of the industry and standards.
Best regards, Spehro Pefhany
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Spehro, You are exactly right. I am looking for a consultant whth documented experience in this area. And he must be licensed in Illinois. The company is willing to compensate that person at appropriate levels.
Bob
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too_many snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com (Too_Many_Tools) wrote in message

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Too_Many_Tools wrote:

Or, the effort involved in checking his design is too expensive. A lot of companies have standard designs that they mod/embellish for the job and the design costs have been well amortised/writen off.
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Hmmmmmmm,
Ahem!! I'm still shakin' from one I saw in the TO area in somebodies house!!!
Take care.
Brian Lawson, Bothwell, Ontario. XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX
On Tue, 24 Aug 2004 20:12:22 GMT, Spehro Pefhany

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snipped-for-privacy@advant.com (Bonza) writes:

Did they have specific issues with your design, or just with your credentials?

How often would this get used? What if the operator goes up the stairs and then brings the stuff up on a hoist after he's up there? Or use a forklift, if one is available.
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snipped-for-privacy@shell.core.com (Ron Bean) wrote:

I suspect the problem is with a *powered* dumbwaiter. A bucket and a pulley and a rope would not be regulated. Maybe the solution is to study the definition of dumbwaiter and design something thet does not meet the legal definition.
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************************** I just looked it up in the BOCA national building code book, section 26. They do not differentiate between powered and non-powered units.
Hope my spelling is good enough!
We need to have a legal installation. We're not trying to skirt the law here. It is just that I have yet to find a vendor that is willing to build to our specifications.
Bob
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snipped-for-privacy@advant.com (Bonza) writes:

OK, a bit more than once an hour.

So you need it to be stable (I can see why they get nervous about hand-carrying it). How hazardous is this stuff?
Also, what is the reason for taking it upstairs in the first place? Can that function be relocated? (Maybe swap space with something else?)

How about if it's not permanently installed? Then it's not part of the building. That's why I was thinking you could use some kind of off-the-shelf hoist. But you need some way to keep it level on the way up, so you don't spill anything (also, you need to make sure it's contained in case the cable breaks).
I'm sure you could find someone to build you a full-blown elevator. By the time you add the liability insurance (for the vendor), I wonder how much difference there would be in the total cost.
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The glassware is for chemical processing equipment. The nature of the process requires height. The glass is cleaned between runs so it comes down and goes back up. We run 4 units like this. The materials used include a significant quantity of liquid mercury.

I wish we could, but it is physically impossible.

I found another vendor and the spec package will go out to him today
Thanks for your reply,
Bob
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snipped-for-privacy@shell.core.com (Ron Bean)

They never looked at the design. Only the concept of a non-elevator company installing what they considered to be an elevator.

The duty cycle is probably 10 cycles/day A forklift would not work because it takes up a lot of room, and the actual live load is only 10 to 30 lbs. I have a forklift here, but it is a 5000 lb machine that is old, big, and way over kill.
The materials in the dumbwaiter car are laboratory glassware and chemicals
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On 25 Aug 2004 10:55:36 -0700, snipped-for-privacy@advant.com (Bonza) wrote:

How about a very steeply inclined conveyor (say 85 degrees from the horizontal). I have a 3/4 HP clutch motor ideal to power this - the operating lever in the normal position applies a brake to the drive pulley, mid position, the brake is released allowing gravity to run the conveyor in reverse to lower the load, pull the leaver all the way and the load comes up. Gerry :-)} London, Canada
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Never ask a question unless you know the answer (and are prepared to live with it.) Too late for you but for future use, just build the damn thing and use it. If it carried people, I'd say whole different story. Bureaucrats and stupid red tape will drive anybody to drink.
bob g.
BTW, I lived in a house about 35 years ago where the owner's son had installed an "elevator" for his aging mother. Two pieces of pipe served as guides and what I'll call an electric chain hoist for motive power. The hoist had a rocker type switch. A piece of clothes line was attached to each end of the rocker, passed through holes in the ceiling and floor of the cab and held down by a pair of sash weights on the basement floor. You had to take a new purchase on a rope (which one depended on whether you were going up or down) from time to time as your trip progresses. It actually depended on the operator to let go of the rope at the appropriate time. No over travel protection. Ah, for the good old days.
Bonza wrote:

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(Ron Bean)

I'm having a hard time figuring out what would be an "elevator" and what wouldn't. (Anything that lifts something up is an elevator, when you think about it.) Would a scissor lift get rejected, even if you bought it from a commercial vendor?
The only other idea I have (and I guess others have suggested it) is a vertical conveyor, like buckets (or boxes) going up full on one side, and coming down empty on the other. If they were on gimbals you woudn't have to worry about the contents ever tipping out, as long as you kept the CG low enough. Such a beast could be completely loaded at one end, until all the boxes were full, and completely emptied at the other end by just having a pair of start and stop buttons at each end. You could add whatever interlocks you need to keep it from being started when the gate is open. I'm also picturing lots of empty space in the hollow shaft so if something did start up when it shouldn't a person would have room enough to move out of the way.
Are you going to have two people to load and empty this thing, or are you just trying to minimize trips upstairs by the one person that must load it?
- Owen -
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Maybe an elevator inspector could tell you where to look. Find a name in any elevator.
- Owen -

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Hey Bonza,
Get a local architect, and a General Contractor. Oh, and a friendly bank manager.
I can't speak to the ANSI Elevator and Lifts Codes, although there is a strong slant to making them homogeneous, but the CSA B-44 Code here in Canada runs to well over 400 pages, with additional supplements for residential and handicap lifts. Plus Ontario has additional for it's own jurisdiction (although a lot of that has to do with enforcement), and each city or fire district will have specifics that only a local architect will know/understand.
Even as a licensed skilled tradesman in the field, I still don't know "WHY" some of the code/rules exist, but I do know that the great proportion of them were written "after the fact"!! I also make it a point not to get involved in discussions of "unlicensed" elevating devices here in this forum, so this ends my contribution.
Take care. Seriously.
Brian Lawson, Bothwell, Ontario.
ps... get a spell checker. I don't mean that as a slight, but it always makes one wonder about the capabilities of others to dabble in fields in which they are not educated when they can't or don't even spell well or carefully.
XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX
On 24 Aug 2004 11:26:44 -0700, snipped-for-privacy@advant.com (Bonza) wrote:

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We genius type people do have problems spelling we can find other peoples mistakes quickly.Well i now a guy that made millions but had to call the neibor to spell some words .A man can show his intelagents if he has enough money to hire people smarter then him
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Ah, is this because of the guy a few years ago who was making a home elevator, and solicited suggestions here?
What ever did come of that projet I wonder.
I do specifically recall that that there were some good technical suggestions, but the majority opinion seemed to be "That's Probabably a Bad Idea."
Jim
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