Over at Woot (an Amazon company), they have a deal of the day on this Gator Lift panel carrying handle.
The Gator Lift GL10 is on sale for $18 each or $33 for two. Amazon Prime subscribers get an additional $3 off and free shipping, and so the price will be $15 each of $30 for two.
The regular price seems to be $25 (Lowe’s) – $30 (Amazon 3rd party).
The deal ends at 12am CT 12/25/2021.
The Gator Lift looks to have very good reviews and beefy mostly-metal construction. There are other brands on Amazon, with loop-style handles, vs. the Gator Lift’s T-shaped handle, but the Gator Lift looks to be more robustly constructed.
I just bought one. $15 with free shipping seemed too good to pass up, and this is definitely something I can use.
The Gator Lift plywood and panel carrier can be used to hold up to 2 sheets or panels, and are rated for loads of up to 200 pounds.
Gator Lift Material Compatibility
The Gator Lift is said to be compatible with a wide range of sheet materials up to 1-1/8″ thick, such as melamine, MDF panels, drywall, plastic, or sheet metal materials. It can also of course be used with plywood and other such materials.
The Gator Lift automatically adjusts to the thickness of your material.
Gator Lift says that you can lift up to 2 sheets or panels.
- 1-1/8″ max thickness
- 200 lbs load rating
- Holds up to 2 panels or sheets
Gator Lift Construction
- Handle and clamp: aerospace-grade aluminum
- Joints: full-width solid steel bars
- Grip: impact-resistant ABS
Buy Now via Woot
Compare via Amazon
Several Amazon user reviews mention the need for caution when using this tool on sheetrock. This might work with drywall if you’re careful, but there might be better products if that’s your primary intended use.
Personally, I’m more interested in using this for carrying and moving plywood panels, and it seems well-suited for the task.
There are other models with different handle designs, but the ones I’ve seen have lower load ratings, such as 110 lbs compared to this lifter’s 200 lb rating. I also like that this one is more descriptively advertised vs. the “high quality metal” descriptions in no-name Amazon listings. As mentioned I ordered one, and will report back once it arrives and I’ve the chance to use it. I don’t anticipate the T-shaped handle design giving me any problems.
Just ordered one. I can’t imagine it will work well with sheetrock, but looks perfect with plywood and subfloor/particle board.
Thanks, just ordered one!
Good price – especially compared to the Gross Stabil:
But pricier than the typical plastic panel carrier you see in Home Depot:
Those orange ones work and are better for Sheetrock, but terribly uncomfortable for any real weight. Or maybe I just have short arms…
There is this style (Bon and Marshalltown):
And Bessey makes one similar to the Gross Stabil
Don’t use this on sheetrock! I hung a lot of sheetrock when I was young. It may be heavy but it is fragile. Grip with two hands or clamp it in your armpit.
I have had one for over 8 years (after the tax day flood here in Houston) dont know how i moved Dry wall around with out it before Love this thing
I have one of these (woot gets a shipment every couple months or so).
I would definitely recommend it for transporting single sheets of plywood.
Two sheets will work but can be a hassle to get balanced and the weight can get overwhelming if you’re not careful.
One thing I’ve found I don’t like is putting a decent amount of weight on it.
The tool itself is very sturdy, the design though is not the most user friendly.
I had 2 sheets of [this](https://www.homedepot.com/p/Advantech-23-32-in-x-4-ft-x-8-ft-Tongue-and-Groove-Aspen-OSB-Underlayment-Panel-1012405/202084475) @78lbs each.
I was able to lift it, but carrying it overhanded like that means the weight and handle design are pulling back/ trying to open your hand while you carry it. The only way to compensate is to pull your arm closer causing the material to lay against you as you go.
I do not recommend trying to carry that much weight, but the tool will do it…it’s just not ergonomically optimized for it. Even with lower weight (single sheet plywood in the 50lbs range will still try to pull out/away from you). It is like a lever and the material has leverage against your hand.
Another way to think of this is that you wouldn’t normally carry two sheets with two hands, so don’t don’t overdo it on one.
TLDR: carry one sheet at a time, don’t hurt yourself.
In for one.
FYI, the article title says Gorilla instead of Gator.
Unless I missed something, I think that’s a mistake.
Koko The Talking Ape
I’ve seen similar things that support the sheet from the bottom, basically just some U-channel with a rod going up to a handle about midway up the sheet. I’d guess they’re easier to use, just because your hand is a few inches closer to the sheet, so the weight is closer to you. Anybody know?
Some also have a pair of skate wheels
Koko The Talking Ape
I’ve seen those too! They look great for really heavy panels, though they don’t look easy to turn.
I’ve seen amateurs use a skateboard. They are actually steerable, though you have to put the sheet on it crosswise or diagonal, so that leaning the sheet left or right makes the board turn.
It can be awkward to lift and hold a sheet solo a couple inches off on one side in order to slip a panel carrier under the middle, whereas with this, you just tilt the board away an inch and grab from the top, easy peasy.
Koko The Talking Ape
Ahh, that makes sense. Thanks!
We always tried to use 16 footers when we could as it reduced the number of seams. A 5/8 or even 1/2 x 16 footer weighs a too much and is too unwieldy to just hang under your arm. Even with a dolly and wallboard lift – placing these were really a 2 person job.
So instead of letting my arm and shoulder go limp and using fingers to carry the weight at the bottom of the sheet I hoist this overhead? Doesn’t that mean I have turned a natural low energy carry at waist height into an awkward full body lift?
Koko The Talking Ape
I think you carry the handle at your shoulder and let the sheet hang down vertically, so actually it would be a bit lower than hooking your fingers under the sheet.
I have the Gorilla. It works great. One word of caution. I don’t know if this is true for the Gator but a 1/4 thick piece might slip out. I had sheet drop on my small toe. Even with shoes on it hurt like…
Good deal. Thank you. Ordered))
This couldn’t have come at a better time. I need to move around all my plywood/mdf/chipboard panels in my garage in May sometime and normally I would require someone to help me.
Now I won’t! Best part is it’s not that heavy to ship to South Africa (1kg).
Thanks Stu. You’re a legend.
To be fair, a lot of things lined up perfectly.
I received Woot’s affiliate newsletter and thought “I definitely need this.” So I ordered one and got started on the post.
I’ve seen panel carrying handles in the past, but passed on them. But, I still find it awkward to move larger panels by hand, especially if I can’t get under them due to size.
$15 shipped (plus tax) seems fairly low-risk, especially given the overly positive user reviews.
I had one OSB was rough on the grip pad and tore it up but used it to sheath inside and outside of a 36×80 garage.
A friend loaned me his when I had to resheath the entire walkout basement part of my project house. That house is 275 miles from home, so I have to work solo most of the time (the usual case of beer to entice a some help for the afternoon doesn’t work), and this tool worked great for that. So great that the last time this came up on Woot, I snagged one of mine own. Yea, you need to find the right balance point, and yea, the angle is a bit awkward, but it’s been a long time since I was 18yrs old. Wood seems a lot lighter back then, lol. My buddy actually has a couple of these, so 2 guys can carry a few sheets at a time.
Thanks for the tip, picked up a pair.
I missed it, but I will watch on woot for this when it comes up again.
Koko The Talking Ape
So, in case any tool designers are listening, it seems like a better design would separate the lift handle from the clamp used to hold the sheet. The current design is fast and simple, but the handle is offset from the sheet to one side, making it a bit awkward to use. And the offset increases as the sheet gets thicker. Also, the clamping force is variable, though at least it increases as the sheet gets thicker, which would mean heavier. But that means thin sheets won’t be clamped very well (above, Leonard says he dropped a 1/4″ sheet on his foot using one.)
So a better design might be a handle placed nearly vertically above the clamp. The clamp could use eccentric cams or some other method that’s fast and non-marring. Or maybe something like toggle clamps, the same principle that vise-grips use. They could be adjusted for the material’s thickness. That wouldn’t be too inconvenient, because you typically need to move lots of sheets of the same thickness, so you could adjust it once and let it be for a while.