by Ned Stoller Ned Stoller

A powerlift step uses a 12V electric linear actuator to raise a worker to a utility tractor operator’s station without climbing. The steps up to the operator’s stations are steep and tall. Workers often cannot safely climb and lift themselves with one leg, especially when they have knee surgery. They can use a powerlift step to raise up and then walk directly from the step to the tractor seat without climbing. The powerlift step needs 300-pound capacity, raise at least 16-inches, have 12” x 14” standing surface, not damage crops during tractor use, and maintain existing tractor ground clearance. This simple design uses a ‘tube sliding in a tube’ concept.

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Parts required:


1pc Bar grate 14-1/2″ wide x 12″ deep

1pc 1-1/2″x1-1/2″x1/4″ angle 14-1/2″ long step support.

2pcs 1/4″x2″ flat stock 15″ long (This is the toe kick and bar grate nose.)

1pc 1/4″x5″x12″ long flat stock (This is the fixed machine mounting plate.)

1pc 1/4″x4″x12″ long flat stock (This is the ‘sandwich’ machine mounting plate.)

1pc 1/4″ wall 1-1/2″ sq tube 4″ long (This is the lower actuator mount tube.)

1 pc 1/4″ wall 1-1/2″ sq tube 16″ long (This is the step platform support.)

1 pc 1/4″ wall 1-1/2″ sq tube 32″ long (This is the slide tube.)

1pc 3/16″ wall 2″ sq tube 48″ long (This is the vertical guide mast.)

1pc 3/16″ wall 2″ sq tube 18″ long (This is the machine mounting frame.)

1pc 1/4″ x 2″ flat stock (This is the vertical guide mast gusset.)

1 pc 1/2-13 x3-1/2″ bolt upper actuator mounting bolt

1pc 1/2-13×5″ lower actuator mounting bolt.

850-pound 12V electric linear actuator 16-inch stroke ( Model: PA-17-16-850)

12V electric controller for actuator ( item SUM-931200-19)