Forklift

Lifter Machine


With top-loading washing machines being the best option for wheelchair users like myself, as front-loading washers can have leakage issues and door closing can be a challenge in a small bathroom/laundry room, there is a problem in being able to reach smaller articles of clothing and small towels stuck to the back of the washer drum when the spin cycle finishes. I normally use an aluminum "grabber stick" to retrieve these smaller articles and the one large towel that can get stuck under the edge of the agitator wheel, but the "grabber" can either get bent from the weight of the wet large towel, or it can scrape the metal of the washer drum. My 'Load Lifter' is simply an 18-inch-wide thin aluminum disk suspended by a pair of 45-inch strands of thin nylon thread (fishing line, basically); the disk is raised/lowered by a pair of small motorized pulleys between the inner and outer drums of the washer, in the front and back (see diagram). Since the washer is 36 inches deep, the extra 9 inches of nylon thread allows for the finished load to be pulled up and over to edge of the washer to but put into the dryer. This lifter disk-pulley system would be available by 'special order' from all major washer-dryer manufacturers such as Kenmoor, Maytag, etc. and would add an estimated $100 to the cost of the machine. One extra benefit of my idea I should mention is that it eliminates the risk of underarm injury from reaching into the machine to retrieve flattened out clothing in front of the agitator.

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