Garage Door Chain Gear Drive Lift Repair


The Grumpy Grease Monkey mechanical engineer.
Staff member
I'm just curious if there's any members with experience installing or repairing,
a manual chain drive garage door opener.
I have one very similar to the diagram posted below
that had the cable on the cable drum fastener,
on the cable that normally extends and fastens on the lower door came loose,
that cable drum is normally under a long wind up spring, tension thats mounted over the door,
theres a separate tension spring for each side of the shop door,
and drum and cable tension,
so the door must be fully opened to replace the cable and fastener connection,
so the cable drum will re-tension the spring and cable drum,
as the garage door is lowered/closed as it rotates and tightens the spring above the door.

having the door closed without spring tension on the cable and cable drum,
offsetting most of the door weight, on one side makes opening the door a problem.
effectively making it impossible for one old geezer alone to raise the shop door,
so before I dive into the repair Id appreciate any tips or advice.
its a 16 ft wide and 8 ft tall garage door.
yeah I can use a come-along and raise the door ,
but I want too know if there's anything else that needs to be addressed,
before I just open the shop door and re-attach the drums door support tension cable

old picture
but the doors are 8ft tall and 16 ft wide and probably weight 500 lbs plus
notice the roller tracks the doors follow up along the wall for about 15 ft then store horizontally under the 16 ft ceiling rafters



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Staff member
Sorry, I still open/close my garage door manually every day ! :)
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The Grumpy Grease Monkey mechanical engineer.
Staff member
btw I found you need two of these manual chain hoists to raise the garage door EVENLY, in its tracks once the spring loaded cable snapped off

Chain Length
16 ft.
Chain size
Hook opening (in.)
1 in.
Hook size (in.)
1 in.
Maximum Lift Height (in.)
16 ft.
Maximum Working load (lbs.)
2000 lb.
Shipping Weight
30.92 lb.
1 ton


The Grumpy Grease Monkey mechanical engineer.
Staff member
I may if the chain jacks don,t work when they arrive, (ordered days ago)
but the tractor and front loader is not as easily controllable IN SMALL PRECISE MOVES
and it certainly won,t allow the full potential lift capacity in distance.
I called a couple garage door install/sales placed to inquire about repair costs,
they can,t be bothered for less than about $700 and thats not guaranteed its a start point.
(most really want to sell you a new door for several thousand dollars,)
not repair anything existing
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Well-Known Member
Can you just reroll the cable around the pulley the same turns as the other side and attach the end to the bottom of the door?


The Grumpy Grease Monkey mechanical engineer.
Staff member
yeah thats the plan once I can get the door raised


Well-Known Member
If you do it before you raise the door it will be easier. In another life I repaired semi trailers and that included overhead doors. I assume it’s the same principle.


The Grumpy Grease Monkey mechanical engineer.
Staff member
well I eventually got the shop doors repaired,
I did what I could do, but the door required new roller tracks and you'll play hell,
finding decent quality heavy commercial door tracks for sale,

most of the ones for sale,
are flimsy ., designed for home use, undersized and thin gauge metal,
I eventually just bit the bullet and called a commercial garage door repair,
it cost me $795 in parts (replacement tracks and rollers and cables and labor charges)
and it took a commercial garage door installer about 8 hours
but I learned a great deal, so next time..if there is a next time,
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