Seeker’s companionway ladders are just that, real aluminum extension ladders. If you’re going to be a work boat, a couple of 16 foot extension ladders will come in handy. But in addition to the ladders we want to be able to move heavy loads and persons with bad knees or injuries too. Seeker could even host persons in wheel chairs provided they were assisted or had good upper body strength. So we are entertaining ideas for a lift. Nothing fancy. Really simple is best.
Neil Behlmer came up with the design below. It smartly uses the hand rails as rails for the lift. We think the lift can be powered by a simple electric winch.
FEROdotUS — A simple way to do it, and probably only needed on one companionway would be a drive axle at the top with two sprockets on it, over which a roller chain hangs connected to a platform at the bottom that runs in rails. On the other end of the chain you have a counterweight which runs in a separate set of rails (even just some angle) so the motor is ultimately not lifting much (ala and elevator).
This could even be driven from the bottom if the chains are connected in a loop with the counterweight and platform half way apart.
Best of all, the gap between the platform’s running rails could have regularly spaced horizontal supports (aka a ladder) so it is still a ladderway when the platform is “parked” at the bottom.
Here is a crude drawing of my design. Only requirement: the name stays.