Jacks and Lifts
by Pat Goss
Back when this car was young, in an emergency, you lifted it with a bumper jack such as we see here. Well, it wasn’t much in its time, and, you know, things haven’t improved all that much over the years.
Here’s what we have in today’s cars. These are scissors jacks, and they’re okay, I suppose, in an emergency but never when you’re working on your car. Working on the car you want a good high quality floor jack to lift it. And make sure it’s ANSI (American National Standards Institute)-approved so that it’s safe.
Alright, but once you get the car up in the air, well, you have to support it somehow, and here’s one way not to do it: do not use concrete blocks. But if you’re one of those hard-heads that insists, well, you have to make sure that you use the concrete block in the same manner that you would build with it. And put a piece of plywood or something over the top of it.
See, that’s the only way they have any real strength, because in the other direction like we have them, it doesn’t take much and they disintegrate.
But, like I say, I wouldn’t use these at all. I would buy a set of ANSI-approved jack stands and position them in the proper place under the vehicle. Then you can work on it safely.
No, I couldn’t run my repair shop without lifts such as we have here. And if you’re a serious do-it-your-selfer, well, they’re available for you as well. If you have the space you could have a lift such as this one. This is an Eagle. It’s a 10,000-pound asymmetrical and it can be purchased for $2,500 or less so that makes it affordable. But maybe you don’t want to go that far. Well, here’s something else that you may want to consider.
These are Race Ramps, and Race Ramps are composite material. They come in different configurations. This is a two piece set up that we have here. And in this particular case we’re using it in combination with wheel cribs on the back so we can get under the entire vehicle. But this would be in the way on most ramps, but here with the Race Ramps we simply pull the extensions out and you have all of this open space. Pretty clever, very light, inexpensive at about 300 bucks. So something that you might want to consider if you do a lot of your own work.
If you have a question or comment, write to me.
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