How to Build a 50' Portable Wheelchair Ramps
Portable wheelchair ramps can be used at multiple locations. They can be designed to be easily moved from place to place or easily taken apart should the need arise. Building a portable ramp will take a bit of time as well as access to different types of materials. Portable ramps must meet all of the minimum requirements set by the ADA as well as adhere to local building codes. A 50 foot wheelchair ramp is a pretty large ramp. So, even though it is portable it will take some muscle to get it into and out of place.
The ramp must be at least 36 inches wide at the narrowest point. For our fifty foot ramp it will be easiest to make 5 ten foot sections. Each section will measure two inches wider then the next in order to allow for each section to slide into the next. One section of material will be 36 inches, the next will be 38 inches, the next 40 inches, the next 42 inches and the fifth section will measure 44 inches. You can choose to make smaller sections and just have more of them. This will allow the ramp to fit in the back of a small pick-up if needed.
You will be constructing the ramp out of metal components. Metal tracks and wheels will be used to slide the sections into and out of each other. The sections will be made of metal grates welded onto tracks that are at a 90 degree angle. Two by two inches will be enough to support the metal grates as well as allow for the two inch guard required by the ADA. You are going to need a drill bit that will go through metal in order to attach the wheel system on the bottom portion of each section.
You will place two sections of the two by two 90 degree angles track facing each other. Cut the metal grate to size and place it on top of the two tracks. It will look like a very shallow u, or a very large staple pointing up. Spot weld the grate to the tracks. Next you will make drill holes every 24 inches. Turn the ramp section upside down and attach a support bracket between the tracks, under the grate. The support brackets will not only help to support the wheelchair weight, but they will also help to further secure the grate to the tracks. Build each section at the specified width.
Wheel Track System
In order to make the ramp portable it will need to fold up into itself. In order for this to work with the sections you built careful measurements will need to be taken to ensure proper installation. Once they are installed on the bottom of each ramp, wheels will be installed on the sides of the ramps and they will slide into each other. Brackets