How to Make Your Own Forearm Forklift

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The Forearm Forklift makes moving of furniture, appliances, electronics, and other heavy and awkward items a safe do-it-yourself project. With the Forearm Forklift, you can apply more leverage using the forearms instead of your back and your hands. Instead of using the product advertised in television, an alternative can be easily adapted for carrying heavy objects.

Things You'll Need

  • A moving helper
  • Two polyester or nylon web straps (10 to 15 feet)

Go to any auto parts store to look for a polyester or nylon strap used for securing cargo on trucks. The width of the strap is between 2 to 4 inches and the length can be 10 to 15 feet. The straps are usually rated in the thousands of pounds. The furniture that will be moved is typically less than 500 pounds.

Remove any hardware in the middle of the straps. Take out items such as buckles and ratchets so that they will not interfere with the furniture. Purchase straps without hardware, if possible. Straps with hooks, rings or any hardware at the ends of the strap belts are acceptable. This hardware will not interfere with the act of lifting and moving.

Place the middle of the strap underneath one end of the furniture or object. Repeat for the other end. If the furniture has legs, the legs will prevent the strap from slipping out. If the furniture has no legs, take the other strap and cross it over the first. The “x” should be in the middle under the furniture. On both ends of the furniture, take the straps and ensure that the ends are extended out evenly.

Stand on one end of the furniture. Take the ends of the straps pull them towards you. With a magic marker, mark on the ends of the strap where your forearm will bend to lift. You can estimate this, then have your moving partner do the same on his end.

Tie a loop at the end of each strap around the general area of the mark you’ve made. Do not tighten it. The purpose of the having an open knot is to allow your forearms to pass through. Once the strap is ready to be used, the loop must be tightened.

Put one forearm through the loop and tighten it with the other hand. Repeat for the other forearm. If the loop around your arm is uncomfortable, wear a long sleeve shirt or tape a small towel around the forearms tightly to cushion the tightness of the knot with the pull of the furniture’s weight.

Lift the furniture with the arms. Heavy furniture (weighing 300 pounds, for example) will still feel heavy but it will not add strain to your back or add stress to your hand.

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