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Old 06-25-2017,
BettyeBrom BettyeBrom is offline
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Default Small appliance elevator ideas?

In designing our kitchen, I managed to have 3 inside corners. These are notorious for wasted space. I have one figured out, but with the other two, I'm going to build some kind of vertical lift to house heavy small appliances in the back corners. In the 'down' position, you would just have a section of counter top even with the rest of the counter, but push a button, and up comes the KitchenAid mixer.

That's where the creative part comes in- How to actuate the lift? Figure on about 20 lbs. or so. They do make TV lifts, but I have a feeling they would be way out of budget. Some ideas I've had include using water pressure in a hydraulic cylinder, use an air cylinder, or use some kind of electric powered mechanism. Linear actuators are too expensive.

I wonder how well a hydraulic or air cylinder would hold up to tap water? There is water right there, already under pressure. The 'waste' could simply go to the drain when the valve was released.
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Old 06-27-2017,
bettesj4 bettesj4 is offline
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Air would be easy as well, but would require the addition of a small compressor and air tank. I have always thought that kitchens should have compressed air, however. Noise would be a factor.

Going electric, a garage door opener motor would probably be the simplest, as they are designed to reverse. Could be noisy as well.
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Old 06-27-2017,
BGJJuliann BGJJuliann is offline
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The RV lifts I found were over $500 each. I don't really have an extra $1000 laying around right now. I think I could build something a lot cheaper (as long as you don't count labor!) It's a good idea to start from, though. They seem to use some kind of linear actuator. I'll have to see if I can find surplus ones somewhere, as the ones I found in a catalog are as expensive as the RV lifts.
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Old 06-28-2017,
BerylBunbu BerylBunbu is offline
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I looked on ebay and found thousands (literally) of them. Most of them are 12 VDC, which would be workable. There are plenty of cheap power supplies out there. I think we're on to something.

I'll probably have to come through the floor, as they are too long to fit in the given space. That's fine, as it would be the easiest way to service the unit if one of them dies.
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Old 06-29-2017,
BettyeOsul BettyeOsul is offline
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I've also thought about just counterbalancing the elevator so it could be raised by hand with very little resistance, but that's not nearly as much fun as pushing a button or throwing a valve.

Of course, the appliance could simply sit on the back corner, with no lift at all, but I like the idea of an elevator. Ideas?
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