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  #1  
Old 10-13-2009, 05:09 PM
silversleeves's Avatar
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Best home jack stand setup?

Does anyone have a brilliant home setup for jackstands that provides ample clearance under the car? I can achieve enough clearance to get under but it is not super comfortable to work.
What do you do?

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  #2  
Old 10-13-2009, 05:51 PM
LarryBible
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I worked under cars up on jack stands for about forty years before finally getting a two post lift, so I feel that I have plenty of experience with your subject.

I would suggest for safety reasons that you don't go too high with jack stands. I also would suggest that you don't try to substitute anything for jack stands. Many people have been killed using wood and concrete blocks.

You might try a set of factory ramps. With a good tall floor jack you can drive one of the car on the ramps, then raise the car with the jack and put a second pair of ramps under the other end. That will work for some things, but not of course, for doing suspension or brake work.

You also might try a set of truck jack stands. They have a larger base to make it safe to support the car higher. The problem then is getting the car up that high.

I hope all this helps and I hope that some day you can end up with a two post lift. You will think that you died and went to Heaven.
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  #3  
Old 10-13-2009, 06:28 PM
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I have 4 Craftsman jack stands that extend from 14 to 21" and are rated 3 tons.
I have 2 off brand jackstands that extend from 11 to 18" and are rated 3 tons.
I have a 3 ton floor jack from harbor freight.
I also have a set of steel car ramps which I don't use very often.

I have used the above combination to pull the transmission from my car and was able to remove it from underneath using a Harbor Freight transmission jack.

A two post lift would be great. My 60+ year old body would be grateful!!!
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  #4  
Old 10-14-2009, 01:12 AM
Texholdem
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Dallas
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LarryBible View Post
I worked under cars up on jack stands for about forty years before finally getting a two post lift, so I feel that I have plenty of experience with your subject.
...
I hope all this helps and I hope that some day you can end up with a two post lift. You will think that you died and went to Heaven.
My garage is 8 feet high, is it enough for the two post lift? how much does it cost?

do you have some pictures showing how the post are anchored?
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Last edited by Texholdem; 10-14-2009 at 01:20 AM.
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  #5  
Old 10-14-2009, 05:45 AM
LarryBible
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My two post lift requires 12' 6" clear. It is held in place with, as I remember, eight 3/4" lag bolts per post, lagged into a 4" high pressure concrete slab.

I tried attaching a few pictures, but the site refused because they are already attached in a thread "Excited about my NEW Shop Building." This thread is probably from 2004, maybe 2005.
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  #6  
Old 10-14-2009, 09:18 AM
Texholdem
 
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Thanks Larry, I have read the other thread from a to z. Awesome shop. I also see that regular garages don't have the space for the lift, I'll keep crawling under the car
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  #7  
Old 10-14-2009, 10:10 AM
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With all of the shake-up in dealerships, I've seen many used lifts at auctions, frame and drive-on 2-post lifts, should be able to find a nice one for around $400 or less.

Local GM dealers, Plymouth, Saturn, Hummer, ... independents, local salvage/auction house.
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  #8  
Old 10-14-2009, 10:11 AM
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silversleeves, I use a combination of ramps for the front wheels and lengths of 6" X 6" on end under the rear lift pads instead of jackstands. I would not hesitate to use pieces of 6" X 6" under all four lift pads for doing some major, longterm work under any of our MB automobiles. Wood has considerable compressive strength and can easily accommodate a car's weight.
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  #9  
Old 10-14-2009, 04:43 PM
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I have a four-post lift that is absolutely marvelous. Two-post is great but the four post is in my garage at home. I didn't know if the garage floor would have a sufficiently strong concrete floor (>3000 psi??) to anchor the 2-post, so I went 4-post. There is a 1/4" steel tray that bridges the two long ramps and I have a $30 Walmart small floor jack that fits in there perfectly to raise whatever I can't do using it on the the ramps. A little more work than a 2-post, but it doubles as a storage device in my garage with the 10 foot ceiling.

On the jack stands, try to find some that aren't the sheet metal ones. The steel units cost more, support more, and are a bit safer to put your vulnerable body under that heavy car.
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  #10  
Old 10-15-2009, 01:34 AM
Texholdem
 
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Mike's four post lift is such a nice thing and he can accommodate 3 cars into the bargain. Wish I had a higher garage.
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---------------------------------------------------------
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Other MBs (sold): 1992 300E-24 - 1979 350SLC - 1984 230E - 1990 300CE
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  #11  
Old 10-15-2009, 01:43 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mramay View Post
I have a four-post lift that is absolutely marvelous. Two-post is great but the four post is in my garage at home. I didn't know if the garage floor would have a sufficiently strong concrete floor (>3000 psi??) to anchor the 2-post, so I went 4-post. There is a 1/4" steel tray that bridges the two long ramps and I have a $30 Walmart small floor jack that fits in there perfectly to raise whatever I can't do using it on the the ramps. A little more work than a 2-post, but it doubles as a storage device in my garage with the 10 foot ceiling.

On the jack stands, try to find some that aren't the sheet metal ones. The steel units cost more, support more, and are a bit safer to put your vulnerable body under that heavy car.
If I stored my car above my other car, I'd be having to constantly wipe oil/fluid droolage off the lower car.

I want a lift...that would be so awesome. I've managed so far though.
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  #12  
Old 10-15-2009, 08:56 AM
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Mike R.
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pawoSD View Post
If I stored my car above my other car, I'd be having to constantly wipe oil/fluid droolage off the lower car.

I want a lift...that would be so awesome. I've managed so far though.
The Direct Lift folks are smarter than me - it came with two plastic trays that fit between the ramps, just to catch the drips. The droolage is another problem though. See below

Funny story - my wife used to wonder why when I went into the garage that it took me so long to get her honey-do's finished. She came out one day to find that yet another car guy had seen the lift when the door was open and we were having a tour of my FrankenBenz hot rod (the silver SEC in the photo) that was on the lift. After that she told me that if I'm working on one of her tasks, the garage door MUST be kept down!!
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  #13  
Old 10-15-2009, 09:13 AM
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Anyone ever try one of those short hydraulic lifts? The one that only raises the car about 2 or 3 feet? Kind of like the ones they use at the tire shops - they don't go very high. I think they sell something like it at Harbor Freight?
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  #14  
Old 10-15-2009, 09:28 AM
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Quote:
If I stored my car above my other car, I'd be having to constantly wipe oil/fluid droolage off the lower car.
That's my problem. I have one of these, but I have created a storage nightmare for myself. I have a Spitfire hanging over my Citroen, and since the CIT isn't going anyplace soon, all I can do for now is admire the self-made sculpture....
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  #15  
Old 10-15-2009, 10:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gmercoleza View Post
Anyone ever try one of those short hydraulic lifts? The one that only raises the car about 2 or 3 feet? Kind of like the ones they use at the tire shops - they don't go very high. I think they sell something like it at Harbor Freight?
I have one -- I don't use it very much. The scissors mechanism takes up so much space, it's hard to work under the car. It's fine for changing wheels, or even fuel lines. It's less handy for something like driveshaft work.

I got it from my BiL -- he didn't care much for it either.

I'm intrigued by this: http://www.kwiklift.com/features-all.htm People who have them seem to like them.

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