12 volt Powered roll down paint shade

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Project by woodbutcherbynight posted 02-16-2012 01:31 AM 2109 views 1 time favorited 4 comments Add to Favorites Watch

For years I have used two long bars across my shop to hang a curtain to spray paint. While it works well it takes a lot of time to put up and down and always seems to be in the way. One bar comes from the wall so this was no problem. The other bar was set across the front of my drill press and cannot go to either wall due to the design of my shop. (Not mine the previous owner built this)

At a school for my job recently I observed the projector screen roll up and down (yes I was very bored) and thought that is a great idea why not make that work for me. My first mock up worked well but I used a hand crank and had to drop the entire assembly one foot from the ceiling leaving the bar with the rolled up curtain causing shadows when rolled up. Using a 12 volt power window motor from the depths of my toolbox at work I then found a 12 volt transformer that was rated for 2 amps. Picture 2 shows the assembly mounted to the ceiling at a meager 3/4 inch from the ceiling itself causing no shadows and out of the way. Picture 4 shows the box I built for the transformer and the switch at the bottom for up and down. The only thing I did not have for this project was a double throw double pole switch for the motor as you have to reverse the polarity to make the motor go back up. So while it was a cheap project (about 5 USD) it was not one of my special zero dollar projects.

Making two 3/4 thick and 3 inch wide wheels on the lathe I made one have a inverse gear to mount up the power window motor steel gear and the other side I drilled a 7/8 inch hole to accept the shaft from my screen assembly. On the opposite end I used some bearings from a old Ford drove the 7/8 broom handle onto it and mounted the race into a piece of wood so the assembly rolls smooth with less force needed for the motor, see picture 3. Sorry the picture does not show the bearing and race well, as it was assembled I forgot to take a picture and as it is now up I am NOT taking it back down. (Laughing)

I looked into making this a “green” project and wanted to use a solar rig to have my 12 volts handy with no connection to house power. Cost for the actual parts outweighed the gain in green (in my opinion) but I am open to any suggestions. To work the motor must have 12 volts and 2 amps potential to function correctly. I looked at several old phone chargers and other small charges I had all had less than 1 amp and just to test my theory I hooked one up. The motor did nothing, just sat and laughed me. A 12 volt battery from a non functional cordless drill worked but hey where is the charger?

This was a interesting project and fun to overcome the adaptation from automotive parts to what I wanted but the price was great. Now when I want to spray paint I pull one curtain out and the other rolls down, clean up is just as quick. We all want to spend time making stuff, NOT cleaning up. Hope this inspires someone else.

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

4 comments so far

View rmoore's profile


325 posts in 3113 days

#1 posted 02-16-2012 03:40 AM

That’s pretty fancy stuff just for painting. I have 2 shower curtains hanging from PVC pipe around my lathe to keep the chips from going everywhere. They seem to always be in the way. Maybe this would work…. hmmmm.

-- The more I learn, the more I realize I don't know. Ron, Crossville Tn

View woodbutcherbynight's profile


5974 posts in 2887 days

#2 posted 02-16-2012 04:25 AM

Yeah, I used the same method for a long time. The idea struck me and with some effort and time this worked out. The “always seem to be in the way” part is what gets irritating all the time. Story of my life ya know?

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

View Bearpaw's profile


262 posts in 4198 days

#3 posted 02-16-2012 05:07 AM

So this is what you were talking about the other night. Now I understand. Good job, Marine.

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

View FreshSawDust's profile


68 posts in 2807 days

#4 posted 02-17-2012 01:54 AM

That is really cool! I may have to use this idea. Thanks for sharing.

-- TJ - Perryville, Missouri

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