Attic Remodel



The attic remodel in the shop involved changing the storage area to maximize space. This included the removal of as many stored items as possible.

Lots of items moved from the previous shop were sorted.

Several trips to the metal recyler helped and some items were just trashed.

Major improvements were wood storage
and an attic ladder hoist.


Phase I: Wood Storage


Wood storage was a priority.


I wanted a solid base that would support storage of full 4 x 8 sheet good.

I added a rear support spine, scabbed the tops of the ceiling joists, put a scab strip to level the front edge.

After flooring the bottom storage area with 1/2 inch press board, I built a frame for a second shelf.
The upper shelf is 24 inch x 8 feet.

Here is the unit with some wood stored.

This is the second unit on the opposite
side of the attic.

It is desinged to only be a single shelf (24" x 8')
for wood storage with tool storage underneath.

The second unit has "captured space"
behind the tools.

Phase II: Ladder Hoist


The access ladder to the attic is a 12 foot long 100 lb model that disappears into the ceiling joist space. For four years I lifted and lowered this ladder with a rope and pulley system.

It had become increasingly difficult as I aged...and when James said I should look into a "winch system" it tumbled me off in an upgrade.




After some design assists from Bob, the BioMed engineer at work. I developed a plan.

I purchased this 110v hoist from Harbor Freight.


The unit is rated for 440 lbs.

The hoist is designed to hang on a pipe. I used an old piece of solid 1 1/4 inch aluminum (aircraft grade Alcoa) that had sat in the corner of the shop in a bucket for 15 years.

In photo below James is mounting some heavy duty gate hardware to the ceiling
2 x 6 rafters to hold the aluminum bar.
We used 3/8 x 3 inch lags.

After the hoist was hanging on the aluminum bar, we made wooden plates with a hole to accomodate the bar and then screwed these to the rafters.



Then we added two worm drive clamps to each end the aluminum bar. These clamps, in conjunction with the wooden plates, will prevent the bar from moving laterally.

The hoist itself is free to move on the bar as needed to "self-adjust" itself to pressures.


The completed installation.

The original rope and pulley line had connected to an eye bolt on the bottom tread of the ladder. The new hoist cable needed a different angle and we had to move the eye bolt to the second tread.

This required a damn long spade bit.

Here is the new cable line attached to relocated eye bolt.

The hoist worked extremely well.

Here is a video of the quick lift capability.


Sorry the video is poor...I turned the camera 90 degrees to get the video and then had to edit it in a cheap video editor. When I rotated it the dimensions were off and James looks very stumpy. I will load a better video later.

Click image to play video.


2016 update

Major overhaul of storage space


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