Ladders for dummies

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  • Ladders for dummies
  • jambourgie
    Member

    Have you done this before? It feels a lot bloody higher once you’re up there than it does looking up from the ground trust me.

    Unless you’re some Fred Dibnah type with colossal minerals I’d suggest getting a very good quality, three section stable trade ladder and tying it off.

    Something like these

    redmex
    Member

    I’d suggest you hire one weekend and that will give you a good idea of size, my roof ladder sits up there constant very occasionally goes to a friends or relatives roof, its a wee bit long but can easily be shortened
    As for a ladder i’m not so keen to go up unless i have to maybe age related as a youngster 3 ladders roped big swings as you climb but far too heavy to move about and the risk of landing on someones car if not careful

    Sod that…there have been times where my job has involved standing at the top of a fully extended 3 section ladder whilst trying to fix brackets onto soffets above and behind your head. Not enjoyable and despite having all the gear, (top and bottom stability devices, extending legs for slopes) it was something I was never comfortable with!

    Climbing onto the roof…done it on my bungalow and thats bad enough…roof ladders are another issue, especially if you’ve got to get it up there and satisfy yourself its not going to slip off the ridge!

    Had a couple of relatives come off their roofs and a guy at work drove his hand/wrist into his arm slipping off a single story roof.

    This is one of the very few jobs I would pay a tradesman for! Climbing off a ladder and up a 12m telephone pole is a piece of cake (and much safer) than up the side of a house!

    sweepy
    Member

    Well maybe just one dummy,

    I need a ladder and have a few questions.

    Needs to be fairly tall, end gables on a 2 story house, but till I get the ladder I cant get up there to measure how tall, so how do I know?

    It won’t be transported often, 2 or 3 section better?

    I’ll probably need to get on the roof, again how the hell can I tell what length of roof ladder I need?

    Any essential accessories, recommendations etc?

    Thanks

    Premier Icon breadcrumb
    Subscriber

    I bought the previous house owners ladders. **** knows why, I’m terrified of the bloody things!

    sweepy
    Member

    Valid points all round. I used to be up and down ladders loads when I was young, not so comfortable now.

    I’ve started at the gutters with a borrowed ladder to get used to it, first time up I was well nervous and ended up using straps to anchors to prevent it slipping or flipping, and even clipped in with a scaffold hook on a climbing harness when working. Felt better second time so didn’t bother but I will be more careful as I get higher.

    Still can’t work out how to measure tho, hire is miles away but can probably borrow off the steel erectors down the road. I bought a hose last week and estimated the length I needed, ended up with one that would reach the sodding moon 🙂

    Christ used to use 14 inch drill bits as foot pegs in the wall when the ladder was a bit short. Could get on a cat ladder (made from treated lats) from a fully extended extension ladder about ten rungs above the gutter, bag of sand or hundred weight cement footing the ladder.

    I’ve walked up shallow pitched roofs (2 and 3 storey) without a cat ladder and shimmied up verges of hipped roofs before now, no scaffolding obviously. Not any more though, it certainly wasn’t big or clever!

    The only accident I ever witnessed was on a properly scaffolded job. 4 stories up, compound fracture of the femur, was pretty ugly, oh and it wasn’t me 😆

    Premier Icon maccruiskeen
    Subscriber

    but till I get the ladder I cant get up there to measure how tall, so how do I know?

    Measure one brick then count the bricks

    Have you done this before?

    If you’re a fan of ’24 Hours in A&E’ you can play ‘count the mention of ladders’

    Premier Icon splashdown
    Subscriber

    If you’re not happy working with ladders then you might want to consider getting a roofer in to carry out the work on your roof….it can be long way down with an unforgiving landing

    kormoran
    Member

    either measure and count the bricks or mark 2 metres on the wall and then stand back and ‘factor it up’ Easy peezy.

    Ladders over 5m are scary. I’d be thinking about hiring a mobile tower for a gable end

    sweepy
    Member

    Measure one brick then count the bricks

    Brilliant idea 🙂 just have to get the render off!

    I used to be ok on them, and I don’t like the fact that I’m not now. I’m not ready to be someone who is scared of ladders yet.
    That might change in the next few weeks tho! Keep an eye out for my cheap for sale ladders in the for sale forum then mock me cruelly, i’ll deserve it 🙂

    sweepy
    Member

    I like that ‘factor it up’ idea, how about the roof? foreshortening will make that tricky

    kormoran
    Member

    measure the width of the building on the gable end and divide by 2, measure the height of the gable wall above an imaginary line between gutters on front and rear elevation using the factor up method. Then use trigonometry to work out the length of the roof a2+b2=c2. assuming front and rear roof is equal.

    I tend to use a roof ladder off a mobile tower if it’s anything more than a bungalow. Don’t underestimate getting a roof ladder up and on a 2 story building though. Two person job really

    Premier Icon budgierider67
    Subscriber

    Don’t call them rungs. They’re strings & rounds.

    HTH – Darren

    Ladders can the set to variable heights. Just buy a long one, they take up no more space than shorter ladders for storage and are just as inconvenient to move about. You don’t have to use it’s full length, so what if it is longer than you need?

    palmer77
    Member

    Recently had a job repointing brickwork on gable end with a two stage 5-6m (ish) ladder…

    Ladders over 5m are scary. I’d be thinking about hiring a mobile tower for a gable end

    True!

    bazwadah
    Member

    I would recommend using a ‘microlite’ (not the plane thingy, This ). We use them at work and they make a big difference in how stable the ladder feels, plus they allow you to roll the top of the ladder up the wall when extending.

    jambourgie
    Member

    Another reason to buy quality, and a ladder with more height than you need is that there’ll be less bend in the ladder. You don’t want to be climbing up vertically on the end of the ladder, which is at its narrowest point and harder to get your big boots on the rungs/rounds. It all starts to get a bit real.

    Premier Icon honeybadgerx
    Subscriber

    chestercopperpot – Member
    Christ used to use 14 inch drill bits as foot pegs in the wall when the ladder was a bit short.

    Well he was a carpenter so you’d expect some practical thinking.

    If I’ve had no one around to foot a ladder I sometimes use a few bags or gravel or similar to put behind the feet.

    timba
    Member

    Domestic quality is ok for infrequent use, trade will be more solid underfoot and heavier.
    Double will be lighter and longer when stored, triple heavier, more solid underfoot but easier to store.

    Do you need to reach the roof apex from the ground?
    Measure floor-to-ceiling on each floor add these plus loft height plus 1m. You’ll need to add extra for below floor height too, e.g. 200mm joists, etc.
    If you only need eaves height then leave the loft height out.
    The extra 1m gives you something to hold on to

    A bit of Pythagoras to get the diagonal length. 8m vertical height needs 2m away at the bottom (1:4) = 8.25m

    Or you could drop a tape measure out of an upstairs window (hold one end!) and add a bit 😀

    Essential accessories for me:
    Rope to tie the ladder securely
    Ladder leveller for the bottom (we have a sloping plot)
    Ladder standoff for eaves (don’t rest it on gutters and window sills, etc)
    This leaflet

    timba
    Member

    If you’re a fan of ’24 Hours in A&E’ you can play ‘count the mention of ladders’

    …and bikes 🙂

    nealglover
    Member

    clipped in with a scaffold hook on a climbing harness when working. Felt better second time so didn’t bother

    I read this sort of thing a lot. In accident reports at work.

    T1000
    Member

    Rent a scaffold instead

    Premier Icon matt_outandabout
    Subscriber

    Rent a scaffold instead

    +1

    I bet the cost is not much different – and far safer.

    gobuchul
    Member

    You do know that falls from heights is the leading cause of deaths in the UK workplace?

    Ladders are **** awful.

    Getting on the roof is the easy bit, getting off and back on the ladder is the hard part.

    A mate of mine, went on the roof for the TV aerial, had to call the Fire Brigade to get him down. Very embarrassing but better than doing a Rod Hull.

    Marin
    Member

    https://www.bbfscaffoldingtowers.co.uk/ladderm8rix-professional.html?gclid=EAIaIQobChMIg__ctbya1gIVz8qyCh05Sw1EEAQYASABEgIN7PD_BwE
    Get something similar to this if link works. Worth every penny even if you only use it a couple of times.

    sweepy
    Member

    Thanks all for your sage words.

    I’ll be more conscientious with the securing, get used to it on the lower jobs, and er ‘work my way up’ as it were.

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