This is my most triumphant creation yet! I’m so excited that we actually managed to do this and it works and works well. We’ve been using it for a couple weeks now and I can get John in and out of the pool by myself. (It’s still nice to have help, but I can do it on my own if I have to.)
I have to admit, that while planning this I asked some different people for advice, and I mostly got some version of… “Don’t try to make this. Try to find something that already exists.” So it’s an even sweeter victory. For what it’s worth, I googled for several months trying to find a lift. Mostly I found lifts for in-ground pools, not above-ground. I did find one for above ground, but it only lifts up to 31″ off the ground and I needed 52″ — and besides, that was about $4000. Way, way, way more than I would ever spend.
To get a rough idea of how it was made go to:http://www.instructables.com/id/Above-Ground-Pool-Lift/
And here to see it in action…