If your house is anything like mine, the chore of setting up and taking down Christmas crap is a back-breaking event. This year my wife was recovering from a surgery so I had to come up with a way of getting the stuff down out of the attic without her. All I had was me and my six year old. Some of the boxes weigh over 75 pounds, so it was doubtful he was helping me much.

I came up with the idea for a pulley system to raise and lower boxes out of the attic, using just a couple of scrap 2x2s, some rope, and a 100lb rated eyelet.
Most trusses are 24″ on center, so it was easy to make a mount that would just slip over the truss’. What makes this better, is the fact that the attic opening is also directly between truss’. To the right is a rough sketch of what I built (click to see it larger). It could obviously be enhanced with a block and tackle if need be, but for my purposes it works without it. Note that the rig is not permanently mounted to the truss, it simply is placed on top. This makes it easy to move where you need it or loan it to a friend.

Using this “attic-rig”, I was able to quickly load the boxes into the sling in the attic, then lower it down. My six year old, easily guided the boxes to the ground, unhooked the sling, then pushed the boxes out of the way. We were able to unpack the attic in 1/2 the time in normally takes, and I didn’t have to take aspirin afterward. Needless to say, the repacking of the attic will be using the same setup. Good luck!