I have this crazy idea that I would like to own a forklift! Not very practical since I have no way to transport it and no where to park it. And why exactly do I need a forklift? Need is maybe too strong of a word.
I was thinking it would be useful for moving items in the garage, loading a pickup truck, moving furniture and lifting heavy casting flasks (in place of a hoist.) Maybe taking out the trash like a real man. With that in mind, my target objectives are:
lift capacity- at least 500 lbs to be usefull i.e 1/4 ton pickup. forks would be 24" apart and 36" long. Able to lift a light pallet.
small size- wheelbase able to fit through a standard doorframe. My shop door is 30". The mast should be able to fit under a 7' door frame. This will obviously limit my lift height.
light weight- will need a heavy counter weight but I would like to be able to transport this on a utility trailer. I will try to keep the vehicle weight at <1000 lbs. with the counter weight removable.
electric propulsion - not as sophisticated as Anons. Maybe 24v wheelchair motors geared down. Speed is not too important.
cost - this is really kind of frivolous so I cant break the bank. I could buy a decent used forklift for a couple grand. Probably can't use hydraulics.
I should note, I am not sure this is really a casting project but I can see alot of parts that will need to be cast. Also it will be a useful foundry tool.
So what do yall think? Would you find uses for this? Will this be another unfinished (or unstarted) project? I should make this a poll and see who would go forward. Hmmm, maybe I will.