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Getting large, heavy things into the shop can be quite a challenge.

While we have a loading dock just through the back shop doors (the “barn doors” featured on many Popular Woodworking covers), the gates on it are about 6″ more narrow than any truck that’s ever delivered to us. And, they’re set back a mere 2″ from the dock’s front edge, which means that truck drivers have to be able to back in perfectly straight and lower the lift gate onto a very narrow ledge.

To make things more interesting, there are parking spaces on either side of the dock, as well as spaces 20′ across the lot directly opposite the dock. All of these inevitably have vehicles in them on days we get a delivery. I sometimes make the mistake of asking delivery drivers if I should have those cars moved. Delivery drivers do not like having their driving skills called into question. Instead, they’ll take 20-25 minutes to execute 230-point turns to snug the truck in but inches away from the cars on either side. (Gosh, we’re all really impressed down here, I can tell you.) So usually, I start making calls to get cars moved the second I see a truck approaching.

For a recent delivery, that was but the start of the trouble…¦

In the June 2009 issue, we’re reviewing the Grizzly 17″ G0636X “Ultimate Band Saw” with a 5-horsepower motor and a 16-1/4″ resaw capacity. Weighing in at 775 pounds, this is one hefty machine. The guys (with much grunting) wrestled it out of the truck onto the dock platform. And there it sat as the rain clouds rolled in and we scratched our heads. The door opening is 81″ tall. The crated band saw was 87″ tall. To get it in the shop, we had to take it off the pallet , which meant we couldn’t use the pallet jack to move it into its new home. And even off the pallet, the monster cleared the door by maybe 1/4″.

But it’s now in place, wired and working. Glen will have a full review of the machine in the June issue (on newsstands in late April). For now, we can reveal that it’s heavy. And big. And green. And a bear to get into the shop.

– Megan Fitzpatrick, managing editor

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  • Jonas H. Jensen

    I fully understand your difficulties.
    My collection of woodworking machines consists of machines manufactured of cast iron between the 50’ies and the 70’ies.
    When I had to move my bandsaw into the shop, I dismounted the top wheel assembl, the entire table and the electric motor. Then I used a chain block to pull it up a slope made by a heavy piece of scaffolding.
    The beauty of heavy machinery is that when it stands where it is supposed to, it feels really good, and it is very stable.
    Good luck with your testing.

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