I’ve got your standard pull-down unfolding attic steps, and they kind of suck. I mean the engineering is clever but the UX is poor.
Years ago we looked at this alternative Concertina Ladder design:
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It doesn’t seem to be much of an improvement, and that was back in 2009, so I just checked to see if any advances have been made. Here’s what I found:
This Youngman Telescopic Loft Ladder seemed promising–until I saw the UX:
This Loftomatic Electric Loft Ladder adds convenience–at the expense of time, and still seems a bit janky:
These also-motorized Majic Stairs seem much more stable, but they take forever to deploy, plus they’ve got two support cables that seem they’d be in the way:
Like me, a fellow named Thomas Krull was dissatisfied with the attic stairs offerings on the market. Unlike me, he actually did something about it and rigged this up:
I’m impressed with the build quality and the speed of the winch, but clumsy me would need railings, and I wouldn’t want to futz with detaching the cable each time. I also don’t think I’d be comfortable removing that much framing from the ceiling.
Ultimately, attic stairs is a difficult design problem, so I shouldn’t be surprised no one’s nailed it yet. For loft accesss, however, industrial designer Zev Bianchi has come up with the best solution I’ve seen yet.