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Looking for advice or information on building hydraulic lift systems


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#16 olcowhand ONLINE  

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Posted November 06, 2011 - 06:56 PM

1000psi is plenty of pressure. I have a pump capable of 2000+psi on my Massey for the front loader, but my pressure relief in my control valves is set at around 750psi, and it will lift far more than safe to lift! But then I'm running 2 1/2" lift cylinders too, which helps a lot too. Almost all hydro's charge/lift pumps operate around 750psi and can lift huge loads, just slower as their volume is lower.
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#17 dave8338 OFFLINE  

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Posted November 07, 2011 - 07:07 PM

Interesting info, guys. I'll be watching this threrad, if for no other reason, than to learn.

#18 KennyP ONLINE  

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Posted November 07, 2011 - 11:40 PM

Interesting info, guys. I'll be watching this threrad, if for no other reason, than to learn.

Me, too. I'd like to add more onto the Ford, someday.

#19 Toolpartzman OFFLINE  

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Posted November 12, 2011 - 05:45 AM

Been out all week, and I'd like to add that "oldcowhand" is correct on pressure. No point in having a bucket to lift 3 tons if it turns the tractor on her nose. However having higher pressure available at the pump gives you more design flexibility to use smaller bore cylinders if space is limited, and smaller cylinders will respond more quickly than large where flow is the same. That comes from "Fun with hydraulics and Horsepower" 101.:bounce:

#20 Cvans OFFLINE  

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Posted November 12, 2011 - 11:07 AM

Years ago I used a power steering pump to lift a 7 ft. dozer blade on my WC Allis. Worked great for many years. Just enlarged the reservoir and use a Greshen (sp?) valve to control the lift.
Just purchased another one to provide hydraulics on a diesel conversion. Hook up the belt plumb and your done.

#21 Tennblue59 OFFLINE  

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Posted November 12, 2011 - 01:08 PM

I had to take a "crash course" in hydraulics to repair some heavy equipment a while back, then when I upgraded the log splitter. I bought an older "Mobile Hydraulics manual" printed by Vickers (early 60s paperback I got for a few bucks on fleabay...) and then downloaded a *FREE* military manual on hydraulic systems repair. When all is said and done - heres my take on it..

Hydraulic systems are the most complicated "simple" systems I have ever seen!!!! Very simple building blocks and concepts, but you can put them together in so many ways to do the same thing.

As somebody said, pressure x area = force. Simple so far! Then you add flow (gpm), line sizing, working pressure, cycle times, mechanical leverage, pump efficiency.....:confuse:

Anyway, design the thing tops down - what do you need to do? How far do you have to move something, and what force is required? How long are you willing to wait for it to happen?

Once you can answer that, then you create the matrix of cylinder size, working pressure, flow rate, and mechanical advantage. Realize that you combine all these things to create force, and there is no one single right way. For example, a 1" diameter cylinder can exert the same force as a 2" cylinder, but will require higher working pressure. But at the same flow rate, the 1" cylinder will cycle faster (less fluid to move). So if there are time constraints, the 2" cylinder needs higher flow rates (bigger pump volume, larger lines,...) to function in the same time frame.

Next, spec out the pump using the pressure/flow requirements of your solution. You can find a pump to meet almost any needs.

Once you have the pump, use the operating pressure, flow rate (how fast the pump needs to spin), and efficiency to determine how much horsepower you need to run it.

Simple, right?!?!?!? :bounce:

Oh, I left out a "few" things, like system volume to dissipate heat, optimum line/valve size, mechanical system sizing (to account for mechanical loading), etc..... But you get the idea.....Actually, once you decide which tools you want to use, most of the support stuff is pretty straight forward.
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#22 Michiganmobileman OFFLINE  

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Posted November 12, 2011 - 04:51 PM

1000psi is plenty of pressure. I have a pump capable of 2000+psi on my Massey for the front loader, but my pressure relief in my control valves is set at around 750psi, and it will lift far more than safe to lift! But then I'm running 2 1/2" lift cylinders too, which helps a lot too. Almost all hydro's charge/lift pumps operate around 750psi and can lift huge loads, just slower as their volume is lower.


Been out all week, and I'd like to add that "oldcowhand" is correct on pressure. No point in having a bucket to lift 3 tons if it turns the tractor on her nose. However having higher pressure available at the pump gives you more design flexibility to use smaller bore cylinders if space is limited, and smaller cylinders will respond more quickly than large where flow is the same. That comes from "Fun with hydraulics and Horsepower" 101.:bounce:


Years ago I used a power steering pump to lift a 7 ft. dozer blade on my WC Allis. Worked great for many years. Just enlarged the reservoir and use a Greshen (sp?) valve to control the lift.
Just purchased another one to provide hydraulics on a diesel conversion. Hook up the belt plumb and your done.


I had to take a "crash course" in hydraulics to repair some heavy equipment a while back, then when I upgraded the log splitter. I bought an older "Mobile Hydraulics manual" printed by Vickers (early 60s paperback I got for a few bucks on fleabay...) and then downloaded a *FREE* military manual on hydraulic systems repair. When all is said and done - heres my take on it..

Hydraulic systems are the most complicated "simple" systems I have ever seen!!!! Very simple building blocks and concepts, but you can put them together in so many ways to do the same thing.

As somebody said, pressure x area = force. Simple so far! Then you add flow (gpm), line sizing, working pressure, cycle times, mechanical leverage, pump efficiency.....:confuse:

Anyway, design the thing tops down - what do you need to do? How far do you have to move something, and what force is required? How long are you willing to wait for it to happen?

Once you can answer that, then you create the matrix of cylinder size, working pressure, flow rate, and mechanical advantage. Realize that you combine all these things to create force, and there is no one single right way. For example, a 1" diameter cylinder can exert the same force as a 2" cylinder, but will require higher working pressure. But at the same flow rate, the 1" cylinder will cycle faster (less fluid to move). So if there are time constraints, the 2" cylinder needs higher flow rates (bigger pump volume, larger lines,...) to function in the same time frame.

Next, spec out the pump using the pressure/flow requirements of your solution. You can find a pump to meet almost any needs.

Once you have the pump, use the operating pressure, flow rate (how fast the pump needs to spin), and efficiency to determine how much horsepower you need to run it.

Simple, right?!?!?!? :bounce:

Oh, I left out a "few" things, like system volume to dissipate heat, optimum line/valve size, mechanical system sizing (to account for mechanical loading), etc..... But you get the idea.....Actually, once you decide which tools you want to use, most of the support stuff is pretty straight forward.



Thanks to all you guys for your input so far. It sounds like I need to get a better idea on a few of my specific requirements and then see from there. I am thinking one spool/cylinder for full blade lift, one for blade right to left tilt and last one for blade swivel. Swivel cylinder may need to be longer to get the blade to angle in both directions. Lift ones about a 4 to 5 inch stroke or so. Cant see needing any more force on the lift cylinders than the weight of my grader, would think about 1000 pounds or so. Will be dry docking the beast in awhile when the ground freezes. Hope to have her ready by spring.


Interesting info, guys. I'll be watching this threrad, if for no other reason, than to learn.


Me, too. I'd like to add more onto the Ford, someday.


Hey you guys I'm learning too! And the best part is none of us have to take a test later:smilewink:. Great bunch of information so far, sure there will be more.

#23 Toolpartzman OFFLINE  

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Posted November 12, 2011 - 05:07 PM

The first time I jacked up a belly mower to swap belts, my first thought was "what the %^$&^%$ is all this mess of springs, pulleys an cams and bull#$%^^ for? I can replace every bit of it with two valves and a couple of actuators. With the popularity of wheel motor driven zero-turns maybe some of these old-time mechanical engineers are finally getting it.:wallbanging:

#24 Toolpartzman OFFLINE  

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Posted November 13, 2011 - 06:44 AM

One great thing about this site is that everyone seems to share a love for tinkering, solving problems or putting ideas to work with old rusty parts and pieces that a NORMAL person would call junk. It gives us an opportunity to use our mental and physical "tool box" in a creative manner.

The posts on this subject show that familiarity with hydraulics is just another tool to play with. Simply put, a box full of hydraulic actuators, directional and flow controls and pumps is no different than a box full of electric motors, switches, relays etc. The choice always hinges on whatever is most practical and as Tennblue59 pointed out, first, what do you want to do?

I like to think of it all as "Fun with Horsepower":bounce: Who was better at putting "real" horsepower to work than the engineers at Panzer? or Wheel Horse? Massey etc?:worshippy1:

Can we weld up a bunch of cables and pulleys and gears to build a FEL? Absolutely. Perhaps not as convenient, or pretty as a hydraulic system, but these folks could do it.

What would a CAT earth mover be without hydraulic power transmission? It would likely look like a 1900s steam Locomotive and less nimble.:bigrofl:

Cvans' example of sticking in an automotive power-steering pump is a perfect example of using the tools available to solve a problem. Simple. Neat. Effective. Hydraulics is no more complicated than sizing a pulley or turning on a light switch. Just like anything else, just follow the rules.------------I'll stop rambling now and go out to the shop and have some fun with horsepower:dancingbanana:

#25 KennyP ONLINE  

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Posted November 13, 2011 - 07:39 AM

Lots of good info and comments for future use being typed here. Thanks to everyone for their input. And, Greg, there will be a test. When you have yours put together, will it work? That's the test.

#26 Toolpartzman OFFLINE  

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Posted November 13, 2011 - 07:57 AM

That's right Kenny, and no grading on the scale, just pass or fail:bigrofl:

#27 KennyP ONLINE  

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Posted November 13, 2011 - 08:59 AM

Since we're on the subject, I have a power steering pump off an Intrepid (rebuilt, in the box). Anybody have an idea of finding a v-belt pulley to fit it? Shaft is about .715", or 18 mm. I would have to find a return line fitting for it. Probably from a you-pull auto parts place.

FOUND IT! Dorman ProductsPowerSteeringPulleys
300-308.jpg
This is what is supposed to be on it. I found this one for a v-belt:
300-102.jpg
.002 bigger ID. Should work okay, you think?

Edited by KennyP, November 13, 2011 - 09:19 AM.
Found one!


#28 Michiganmobileman OFFLINE  

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Posted November 13, 2011 - 03:54 PM

I guess I should have said a "written" test ::booboo::

Lots of good info and comments for future use being typed here. Thanks to everyone for their input. And, Greg, there will be a test. When you have yours put together, will it work? That's the test.


That's right Kenny, and no grading on the scale, just pass or fail:bigrofl:



That is my normal test method, if it breaks it wasnt strong enough, just sometimes have to use things to find that out:smilewink:

#29 Toolpartzman OFFLINE  

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Posted November 13, 2011 - 05:23 PM

From the pic it appears so Kenny. Your return line fitting could be anything, even a small hose clamp over the metal barb. I rigged the same for a temp. fix for return line cooler on my Gravely walk behind and still haven't had to make a more permanent fix.--SO far anyway

#30 Toolpartzman OFFLINE  

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Posted November 13, 2011 - 05:28 PM

Sounds like you're planning a hydraulic dump actuator for your dump trailer? That will be slick.---LeeB:D




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