How to set up a pulley laundry line? : LUSENET : Countryside : One Thread

I'd like to run a laundry line out a secondstory sliding glass door and over to a spruce tree. Suggestions? I have always admired the kind on pulleys, but my guess is someone out there has come up with an outstanding way to structure it. Thanks!

-- seraphima (, February 01, 2001


I have had this kind of clothesline for amost 17years now! It works wonderful.I have mine from a large oak tree to the deck (which is 18 feet high) we used a pulley "tied" around the oak tree with heavy duty electrical wire and the pulley on the deck is "tied" to a 6"x6" posts that is 5' tall. I can just stand on the deck and hang the clothes out. I can hang all my quilts, spreads and sheets with out them dragging on the ground!!We use 1/2" nylon rope because it will handle all the clothes at once. I can hang 3 large loads at once and haven't had any problems. We have only changed the rope 3 times in 17 yrs.

-- Debbie T in N.C. (, February 01, 2001.

What do you do to connect the two ends of the line/rope so that it makes a continuous loop?

-- Joy Froelich (, February 02, 2001.

Lehman's has the clothesline pulleys. I have also seen fanbelt pulleys and bicycle wheels used as clothesline pulleys, too. I don't know which would work the best. I use regular clothesline pulleys, but I have had it "jump the track."

What I use to connect the two ends of my line are is that handy little piece of hardware that I have no clue to it's name. It is two eye bolts that thread into a center piece. As you twist the center, it tightens the tension on your line. Twist the other way, and the bolts loosen. Anyone know what it is called?

-- Laura (, February 02, 2001.

i think that is called a turnbuckle.


-- gene ward (, February 02, 2001.

what do you do with the 2 ends of the rope?? square not? will that make it jump the pulleys??

-- Stan (, February 02, 2001.

The knot or turnbuckle (thanks Gene) only runs from pulley to pulley. There in no need to run a knot over the pulley. If you pin your first item of laundry next to the knot, you will only be taking it as far as the pulley anyway.

I think it jumped the track because the tension was too loose.

-- Laura (, February 02, 2001.

We use a knot. It works because you draw the clothes back in when you remove them as they are dry! Then the next load goes out. Ours is nothing fancy but it sure is wonderful!

-- Debbie T in N.C. (, February 03, 2001.

My husband and I have been going around and around over my proposed new clothes line because I can't decide what I want. He has suggested a pulley line much as you have described. Strung from the eves by our back door, (because that's where my washer is located)to a corner post on the other side of the backyard. He seems to think that would be more convenient than walking out to the back of the house, and through a gate with a load of wet clothes. Most likey he is right. My problem with the pulley line is: will it give us enough hanging space? and the clothes would be hanging in plain sight to anyone who came along. Anyway, my whole reason for sharing this is to let you know that we priced all kinds of pulleys at our local home improvement store,(Orchard Supply Hardware), they also had all different types of lines and connectors. Now, after reading this I am leaning towards his idea of the pulley system. Does anyone else have a pulley system and do they like it? How many feet of line would a person need for a large load of towels? Thanks

-- cindy palmer (, February 06, 2001.

My husband & I set up a pulley line with regular clothesline pulleys and a turnbuckle, as some of you have discussed. But we used a galvanized cable for the clothesline instead of regular rope or vinyl coated. However, when I hang clothes on the line and reel them out away from the house, the line twists and the clothes get wrapped around it. The top & bottom parts of the line don't actually cross, but the bottom simply twists. We've tried taking the whole thing down, stretching out the cable to make sure it's not twisted, and putting it back up again, but it still twists. Any suggestions???

-- Kathleen (, August 27, 2001.

Kathleen, I can't say why the cable tends to twist except I imagine it is related to the friction of running a stiff(ish) cable around a small diameter pulley.

I imagine you pin the first clothes close to the turnbuckle then move the turnbuckle away from you? If so then I suggest you try fixing a piece of wood, say 2x1 about 6 inches long to the turnbuckle and at right angles to the cable so that the wood rests against the other cable, maybe even drill a hole in the wood and pass the other side of the cable through it. Then the lower cable will not be able to twist without twisting itself around the upper cable.

-- john hill (, August 27, 2001.

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