An extension ladder is easy to use in construction situations when you don’t need to worry about marring the surface upon which you lean it against. When using a ladder on painted drywall or plaster, stucco or vinyl siding, however, the ladder’s sharp edges can damage a delicate finish. Padding, usually known as a ladder bumper, distributes your weight over a larger area at the top of the ladder and protects finished surfaces from damage from the ladder’s weight-bearing edge. Because many extension ladders collapse fully upon themselves when stored, padding must be removable in order to store or transport the ladder.
Things You'll Need
- Tape measure
- Carpet scrap
- Laundry marker
- Straight edge
- Cutting surface
- Utility knife
- Adjustable web strapping
- Pop rivet gun
Measure the distance from the outer edge of each rung using a tape measure, and measure the width of each rung. Add these measurements together to determine the length measurement of the carpet pad you’ll use to form the ladder bumper.
Measure and mark cutting guides on the rear side of the carpet scrap. The bumper pad should be a rectangle 6 inches in width by the length determined by measurements in Step 1. Place the carpet face down on a cutting surface, and using a utility knife and a straight edge, cut out the bumper pad.
Cut the adjustable web strapping if necessary. To ease cinching down and working with, the total length of the strapping should be about 10 inches longer than the distance between the ladder’s rungs as measured in Step 1. Cut the strap in two portions, one with a buckle and the other with the cinch edge of the strap. If the strap is made from an acrylic material, use a lighter to lightly sear the cut ends to keep them from unraveling.
Affix the buckle portion of the strap to the bumper pad by positioning it perpendicular to one of the 6-inch edges. Leave the carpet face down, and attach the strap to the padding using the pop rivet gun. Place four rivets in a rectangular pattern, approximately 2 inches apart. Affix the cinch side of the strap to the bumper pad’s opposite edge in the same fashion.
Extend the ladder slightly so you can access its upper edge easily. You may need to prop the ladder on a low fence or scrap wood to make access easier. Wrap the bumper, with the carpet’s top edge facing outward, around the ladder’s upper edge. Using the web strap, pull the ends tightly together, cinching the strap together as tightly as possible.
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