My neighbor has an old 40 foot aluminum extension ladder that he has
stored for a number of years in his garage. He has offered to sell it
to me if I want it. My question is this: Assuming I have to replace
the ropes, what would a fair price be for a used ladder of this size?
I think things are worth what someone is willing to pay for them. Many
things cost a lot when new and are practically worthless when used. I use a
28 foot fiberglass ladder that cost me close to $400 when I bought it. Next
year when I get a new one, I'm hoping I don't have to pay to get rid of it.
Offer him what it's worth TO YOU
Among other things, ladders are rated by the weight they can safely hold.
The following copied from a web page.
a.. Type III, Light Duty / Household Use (200 pound load capacity): The
lightest rating, intended for short ladders that will be used very
infrequently and for very light-duty work.
b.. Type II, Medium Duty, Commercial Use (225 pound load capacity): For
light duty use around the house -- painting, cleaning, light repairs.
c.. Type I, Heavy Duty, Industrial Use (250 pound load capacity): Good all
around rating for household or commercial use. Sturdy enough for just about
d.. Type IA, Extra Heavy Duty/Professional Use (300 pound load capacity):
The highest rating. Very sturdy, and designed for rugged use in any capacity
on commercial or industrial sites.
Remember that the more highly rate a ladder is the more it weighs and the
more it costs
I used to have 24 foot one (that's two 12 foot sections that overlap and
give you about 20 feet full extended.
When it is extended quite a bit, there is a minimum amount of overlap which
makes it a whole lot more flexible. It can be a real thrill standing 12 feet
of the ground on a bouncing ladder.
Two other considerations.
You can use the as two 20 footers and get stands to support a plank to act
as a scaffold.
Do you really need a ladder that big?
Try it out first. Check for a rating sticker. See how heavy it is. See how
well the sections slide together. See how well the sections lock together.
It's your neck that you will put in jeopardy. Know what you are getting
When I moved from a two story house to a single story seven years ago, I
sold my old ladder for $50
Along the same lines, I'd rather climb a barely extended 40' ladder than a
fully extended 28' to get to the same height.
I'm not afraid of heights, but I want something really solid under me to get
to the top. PITA to lug and set up though.
Where I work there is a 220 foot brick smoke stack. A crew did some work on
it and they stack wood ladders one atop the other all the way up. The
ladders are lashed to each other and around the stack. No way would you get
my ass up them.
If you buy it, take a few seconds to spray the bottom rung with some
orange Day Glo paint.
I've done that to every ladder I own. It's stopped me from mistaking the
second rung for the bottom one and too often taking my final step down
onto thin air rather than the ground.
Jeff (Admitted klutz with regard to ladders.)
bright daylight, and look for any bending or damage, popped rivets, fatigue
cracks, and so forth. If any visible damage other than rotted rope, pass.
New ones are only a couple hundred at the big-box. If you have any close
power lines to your house, fiberglass is a better bet. If your power drop is
roof versus buried, be very careful around it with an aluminum ladder. Test
drive the ladder- you can raise it even without the rope. Do the sections
slide smoothly, or bind? Lean up against house in a safe spot, and climb
roof high. Do <you> feel safe on it, or is it all bouncy? What is the rated
weight for the ladder? - for a larger fellow like me, many cheaper ladders
are at rated weight even if I am not carrying anything.
(Shopping for a 16-20 foot myself, to go with this house I just bought.
Spent many hours on ladders as a much lighter kid, but the one I owned
vanished 3-4 moves ago along with the rest of my kid summer job tools...)
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