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As the owner of a third-generation Massachusetts masonry and stone business, Don Lombardi has used his share of lift platforms. But none of them provided the 360-degree access to brick chimneys, smokestacks, and other structures that his job required.
So, relying on his native Yankee ingenuity, Lombardi set out to invent a new type of lift platform that met his specific needs. Now the Lombardi Lift is being marketed nationally as a versatile new tool that “will revolutionize how the industry accesses difficult and non-traditional work areas by providing greater flexibility, increased safety, and single operation.”
“The Lombardi Lift appeals to all contractors,” Lombardi states on his website. “It is more versatile than the current basket/bucket systems. The Lombardi Lift provides superior 360-degree accessibility of vertical and multi-dimensional structures and is the simple, safe solution to areas that prove difficult to stage.”
The Lombardi Lift is much like a traditional work platform forklift attachment, but with a difference. In addition to the main platform, the Lombardi Lift features two additional fold-down platforms that jut out from either side of the main standing platform.
A third platform can be laid over the ends of the two fold-down platforms to provide 360-degree access to vertical structures such as poles and chimneys.
Its unique, patented design allows workers to use it in multiple configurations: It can be used as a standard work platform, an L-shaped platform, a U-shaped platform, or a work platform that goes all the way around a vertical work surface.
A ladder allows for easy access to the platform. It combines the maneuverability of an aerial lift or telehandler with the adjustability of scaffolding.
Although Lombardi originally designed his innovative work platform for his masonry business, it has applications in many other industries, including utilities, painting, chimney sweeping, sign companies, parks and recreation, golf courses, and many, many others.
From Concept to Reality
Lombardi first envisioned the new type of work platform back in 2007 when he realized that the existing platforms on the market failed to provide the kind of access he needed while restoring chimneys, brick columns, and other structures in his brick and stone restoration business in Manchester by the Sea, Massachusetts.
By 2013, after developing a prototype, Lombardi realized that his invention had uses far beyond his own work. So he applied for and received a patent.
Now Lombardi has three patents, as well as one patent in Canada for his design.