crank up

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crank up

1. Literally, to turn a crank on something so that it starts working. A noun or pronoun can be used between "crank" and "up." Annabelle was thrilled when I cranked up the music box for her.
2. To prompt or cause someone to do something. A noun or pronoun can be used between "crank" and "up." I know I'm supposed to be researching right now, but I've had a really hard time cranking myself up to do it.
3. To intensify. A noun or pronoun can be used between "crank" and "up." If we don't crank up our efforts, we'll never meet our goal for the fundraiser.
4. To start. A noun or pronoun can be used between "crank" and "up." You need to crank up this project now, in order to finish it by the deadline.
5. To raise the volume of something. A noun or pronoun can be used between "crank" and "up." Hey, that's a great song—crank up the radio!
See also: crank, up

crank someone up

Fig. to motivate; to get someone started. (See also crank something up.) See if you can crank up your brother and get him going on time today. Some mornings, I can't crank myself up enough to get to work on time.
See also: crank, up

crank something up

 
1. to get a machine or a process started. (Alludes to turning the starting crank of an early automobile.) Please crank the machinery so the workers can start working. Let's crank up the drill and make a few holes here in the wall.
2. to increase the volume of an electronic device. He cranked it up a little more and CRACK, there went both speakers! Kelly cranked up his stereo until we were nearly deafened.
See also: crank, up

crank up

1. Get started, as in The theater season is cranking up with four benefit performances. This expression transfers the literal sense of crank, "operate a motor by turning a crank," to starting any activity. [Slang; 1930s]
2. Stimulate or intensify one's efforts. For example, We've got to crank up enthusiasm for this new product, or Close to the election the campaign really cranked up. [Slang; mid-1900s]
See also: crank, up

crank up

v.
1. To cause a machine to start working by or as if by turning a crank: The mechanic cranked up the antique car to show us how it worked. We waved goodbye as the pilot cranked the engines up.
2. To put something into action: The producers cranked up a massive publicity campaign before releasing the film.
3. To motivate someone: I could barely crank myself up to get to school this morning. An emcee came out before the performance and cranked up the crowd.
4. To cause something to intensify, as in volume or force: I cranked up the stereo when my favorite song came on. We cranked the motor up to 4200 rpm.
See also: crank, up