This is now the second time I have had to move my Cobra Class 4 Sewing machine. It’s the biggest they sell and I believe just the head comes in around a few hundred pounds. Not light by any means and certainly not a one man task. The first time I had to move it was actually right after it was delivered. In my old workshop I had two levels and a lot of room on the second level. I ended up getting an extra hand to help me muscle it upstairs and onto the table, mounting it with four bolts.
This time it survived a move across the country, up north now in forests outside of the great Cascade Range. This time I wanted to figure out a way to lift it out of its box and onto the table on my own. The solution – a chain lift and a few straps precariously placed. The lift is a Neiko 1 ton lift and the straps are called axle straps with d-rings installed. I bought a few different lengths since this is a very awkward shape to hold. The first thing I want to note is that this was not really a safe way to do it. If you have two friends that can help you lift it instead, that’s really the way to go.
As you can see int he photo – I have one strap wrapped around the drive shaft where the hand wheel is installed. Another is cupped just below where the bobbin is installed. That was the scary part, but the only place that would help balance things out. The strap near the bobbin goes up and around the top body once wrapping onto itself. This also helped cinch things tightly. As I lifted the sewing machine out of the protective styrofoam case I made sure I was well clear of things if it slipped. I also slid the styrofoam underneath the lift to help break a fall. Not that that would do much for this beast!
Pulling it up by the chain pulley system was very easy and quick. I slid the table underneath it and lowered a bit to install the bolts. Pretty easy work…but next time I think I will give the guys over at Leather Machine Co a call to see how to better strap things up. I considered myself lucky this time!