Steel bar size for moving windmill


anyone know what size steel bar to use, using the holes in the base of the windmill and car jacks? Also what lengths are recommended to act as outriggers so it doesn’t tip over when transporting on a pallet?

I spoke to a steel place today but they only suggested using 20mm solid steel or a 90º angle bar.

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I used 1.5” (~38mm) bars cut to 6’ (1.8m) length solid steel bars to lift my windmills. The front bar flexed a little bit while lifting, but it worked fine. Skip the 20mm bars and go for something much thicker.

The windmill is front heavy, so be careful.

It might be good to strap the bars to the pallet when you are using them as outriggers.

I have never seen a Heidelberg engineer use the holes for lifting a machine, Dic is right be careful it can’t be far away from tipping over make sure the platen is closed if you are going to do it this way then lower it down back end first.

Moving a Windmill is greatly helped by utilizing the two sets of holes that are at the base of the frame.

1. By inserting 4 foot steel shafts (solid stock not hollow pipe) of 1.5” dia. into the equal sized holes each side can be raised with a jack. Make sure the platen is closed to center up your gravity.

2. Start on one side (side 1) of the press and span a 4x4 or 4x6 across the bottom of both steel shafts, this will be your ‘lifting board’, and raise side 1 by 1-2” (if you raise the press too much on one side while up on blocks the press will start to slide down the pipes to the low end). Place blocks under both shafts on side 1, closer to the press than your ‘lifting board’ (longer shafts are better than shorter for this reason).

3. Repeat this process on the opposite side (side 2) by gradually lifting a total of 2-3”, raising side 2 a little above side 1.

4. Repeat this process of slowly raising the press with a jack, one side at a time and setting it down on progressively higher amounts of blocking.

5. Once the press is about 6” off the floor you should be able to either bolt a 4x6” pair of skids to the press base or slide a sturdy pallet under the press. If you use one pair of skids you can roll the press on pipes or add a second ‘crossed’ pair of 4x6 skids to crib up the press… this would allow a pallet jack to be rolled in for easy movement. (See enclosed photo)

Best wishes and good luck!

Thanks flywheel, it all makes sense. One quick question. How can you slide a pallet under the press if blocks are holding the press off the ground? Won’t they get in the way? If I can understand this then I am good to go. Thanks for your advice so far. (Noted about keeping it centralised so it doesn’t tip).

My windmill was on a pallet when I got it. I jacked it up, put the steel rods through, and then lowered it onto 3 ton jack stands. The platen was closed (as you can see in the photo). I removed the old pallet and quickly replaced it with a new pallet constructed of 4x4” lumber and 2 sheets of 3/4” plywood. Be sure to get some substantial supports under the base of the windmill.

image: photo.JPG


Thx Dicharry, seeing it this way helped get my head around it.

For lifting onto/off the truck, my riggers were supplied by my engineers with a large eye bolt.

When the chase clip is removed it exposes a hole (apparently meant for this) that the eye bolt can pass through. Tighten the nuts (at least 2) through the little ‘Alice in Wonderland’ door at the back of the platen. It’s amazingly well balanced hanging from this eye bolt.

Hi everyone,

just a question related to the same discussion. Would mild steel be strong enough for this operation?

What I have read is that solid rods will flex more than steel tube will. Note, steel tube, not plumbing pipe.
You can see how much solid rod deflects in the photo.

I used 1.5” solid steel rods from the metal scrap yard. For 2 7’ lengths they were $29 including cutting to length with an oxy-acetylene torch.

I suggest just to contact another studio with a Windmill. They must moved years ago the Windmill they have. Ask for the company that moved it: if they press was moved succesfully also your will be.

Pratice is the number one thing you should consider!

DO NOT MOVE THE WINDMILL IF YOU HAVE NEVER DONE IT. It can be very dangerous for you and for your press.

If you’ll use the vertical place for the steel bar the movements will be easier but the windmill can easily turn around itself. If you use the 2 bars on the holes at the bottom of the press be sure to be at least 4 people while moving it on the pallet jack because it oscillates on the sides. One person move the pallet jack, on keep the press on the front, the others two peole keep the press on the 2 sides.

I used the 2 steel bars on the bottom to lift it, then when moving it on the pallet jack the press oscillated on a side and I keeped it. If the press is centered on the pallet it’s enough a little contrast made with your arms to keep the press and find the balance.

Keep us updated!

ps. One of the worst moments of my life was moving the windmill…the only thing that quieted me a bit was the thing the transporters moved precedently a windmill and they used to mode regulary offset presses. Ask for them, believe me!

by diameter solid steel is stronger than tube, even DOM pipe. it may flex a bit but, still stronger. now if you measure steel by weight then tube is stronger. tube of the same weight is larger diameter.

Thanks for sharing everyone. Scrap metal yard is a great idea. why didn’t i think of that!