What was this table/cart used for?
July 26, 2009 8:18 PM   Subscribe

Can anyone identify this antique table/cart? It's raised and lowered using a crank.

At first I thought it was an old gurney or casket dolly, but it's not long enough to be either.

posted by secretsecret to Home & Garden (5 answers total)
Taking a guess: an old tea trolley or hospital kitchen trolley perhaps?
posted by Kerasia at 10:25 PM on July 26, 2009

I would have guessed gurney as well. How long is it?
posted by gudrun at 10:36 PM on July 26, 2009

Looking at it, I can see that it's meant for something that needs to be at a precise level - so, not a tea trolley. Since it isn't long enough for a hospital gurney I'm guessing that it's a stand for a piece of equipment - perhaps a projector?
posted by Joe in Australia at 12:30 AM on July 27, 2009

Looks to be 3.5'~4.5' long?

We had a cart almost exactly like that at one telephone exchange* I used to work at - slightly different frame (which still telescoped like that one) & handle (ours folded back in), but the scissor lift looks much the same. Ours had handles at each ends - one end was on the upper scissor, the other end was on the lower, and a gearbox/clutch at one end so you could wind the upper & lower scissors either independently or together

I've seen similar carts around other places like storerooms, etc. Anywhere you need to lift something heavy to an uncomfortable height. Real handy for getting stuff from the racks to the workbench & back again. That one looks either generic enough to be for anything, or specific enough to be something made for a particular purpose.

(*The one we had wouldn't quite lift high enough to get the large & heavy (30~40kg) relay set near the top of a GVM or SLM into place - 7' or so up - but was handy for anything above the jack-box (i.e. ~ chest height), even if you had to lift it the last few inches. For those top relay sets we either had to get the relay set hoist (which hung from the top of the rack, and could be wound down and up between about waist height and the top of the rack), or manhandle the thing onto the top of a ladder, climb up, and lift it into place (which was a) against OH&S regs, and b) uncomfortably dangerous enough that you knew you'd at least pull a muscle if something went wrong)).
posted by Pinback at 12:46 AM on July 27, 2009

Actually, on a another view: the upper scissor appears to have no connection to a similar scissor on the other end, but the lower one looks like it does (the threaded rod / screw can be seen continuing in-line to the other side). That suggests that the lower scissor lifts the table, while the top one tilts it. That's very bed or gurney-like but, as you say, it doesn't look long enough - and if it was, it would make more sense to have both handles at the same end.
posted by Pinback at 12:57 AM on July 27, 2009

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