Plywood lift

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Project by Bearpaw posted 08-06-2016 10:39 PM 4323 views 17 times favorited 8 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I enjoy woodworking and my shop. The small things are no problem, but how do you lift and cut a sheet of 3/4”x 4’ x8’ plywood that weighs about 80 pounds. You make a jig that handles it for you. I had built the long detachable bed that has ball bearing castors mounted on it sometimes ago and I could lift the plywood, but it was very awkward and could be dangerous. I had seen a similar lift in a Woodsmith video. So this is my version. It is mounted to the side of the table with door hinges. You remove it by taking out the hinge pins. there are hooks for the plywood to rest in to lift it. You simply tilt the plywood over onto the table and let the lift hang down out of the way. Once the plywood is on the table you are ready to cut. Then if you want to turn the plywood around to cut from the other factory edge it is easy to turn around on the table. The nice thing about the table and lift is the wood came from cut offs and the hinges from my collection of hardware and the roller bearings from Harbor Freight. All total there is less than $15.00 in both. The table legs fold up and the unit hangs on the wall of the shop out of the way. So this is how I cut sheets of plywood.

By the way, I have tweaked my Craftsman 113 saw by adding a 3 horse power motor when the old original one died and added link belts. The next thing will be a new Delta 30” fence.

-- "When we build, let us think we build forever." John Ruskin

8 comments so far

View Hawaiilad's profile


3375 posts in 3986 days

#1 posted 08-07-2016 05:17 AM

Great Idea. I have gotten to the age where lifting is really a problem, so it’s nice to see items like this that will help allot in the shop. Thanks for sharing

-- Larry in Hawaii,

View robscastle's profile


7649 posts in 3169 days

#2 posted 08-07-2016 05:37 AM

Old age it that it? and here I was thinking the timber must be getting heavier, and all along it was me getting older and weaker!

Otherwise … A great mechanical assistance for us oldies.
I usually try to con my wife into helping but is seems she is getting a bit too cunning for me these days

Makes it look easy and a pleasant task as opposed to wrestling sheets up and then trying to reach the power switch!!

Thank you barepaw….wait a minute your hands do not look any bigger than mine !!

-- Regards Rob

View Bearpaw's profile


270 posts in 4685 days

#3 posted 08-07-2016 11:20 AM

Yes, it is the age thing. I am 77 years old and have a right hip that is full of arthritis. The leg on the lift is a little less than 24” making the sheet a little top heavy and easier to tilt over. I do a lot of case work. I did a job where I had to rip 23 sheets of plywood and that is when I built the table. This job only had 3, but it was time to make the lift. The 80+ pounds feels like 10 pounds.

-- "When we build, let us think we build forever." John Ruskin

View MrRon's profile


5975 posts in 4208 days

#4 posted 08-07-2016 07:38 PM

Great idea Bearpaw. I have one better; a strong grandson who does the heavy lifting for me, but I may lose his services in a few years.

View Dave's profile


157 posts in 4162 days

#5 posted 08-08-2016 02:26 AM

I think this is a great idea!

-- "I'm not afraid of heights. I'm afraid of widths." - Steven Wright

View woodbutcherbynight's profile


7176 posts in 3374 days

#6 posted 08-08-2016 02:48 AM

Nice work, one day after I win the lottery I plan on building a shop where I can actually cut a full piece of plywood on the tablesaw. LOL.

-- Live to tell the stories, they sound better that way.

View Evern's profile


12 posts in 1800 days

#7 posted 08-09-2016 01:07 AM

Great idea!

-- Evern49

View WistysWoodWorkingWonders's profile


12825 posts in 4122 days

#8 posted 08-16-2016 02:30 AM

excellent idea, takes up some room, but the safety you get and the assist of lifting the sheets is well worth losing the space. I like that it is moveable so when not required, can be stored…

-- New Project = New Tool... it's just the way it is, don't fight it... :)

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