Nugi
Nugi Reader
3/28/19 10:34 a.m.

So it seems every 2 years or so there is a jackstand thread. Usually spurred by compulsive online shopping, but occasionally from a tragic event. Thankfully, this is the former. 

I am about to put my 2001 Crv in the air for a week or so to completely replace the suspension, bushing upgrade, etc. When I did my CRX, I used random jackstands, and scissor jacks because it weighs 1800lbs when im in it. Still ill-advised, but I can deadlift the rear, so it seemed cool at the time. Given that the crv is pushing 3300lbs, and I will be spending time prying on the chassis underneath it, I figured I needed an upgrade. I stood up from my computer, put on pants, and headed to my finest local supplier of imported tools. Looked around at their options picked up a pair of "6 ton" stands, because "When in doubt, make it stout". I drove home 45min with some cheap cast and welded steel in tow. Once home, like any self-respecting car and tool nut, ripped open the package like a depraved diyanosisian christmas morning celebration, and started putting them together. 

Suddenly, things went worng. Clearly marked on a standard orange over while Warning sticker was the imploration to hammer in the 'safety tab' which seems mostly to prevent overextension. Dutifuly, I slid in the cast shank and with a 6lb and flat punch bent it a good 80 deg in. No easy task as the metal was suprisingly stout. However, when I went to raise the jack, I found I could not, thanks to the casting design. Attempts to unbend the tab bent the housing for the shank, rendering it worthless. Wtf. Back to HF and back to shopping. 

This time, I think ahead, and consult various forums, and find some good info here. I will distill (and only slightly exaggerate) the general points of view last I checked. 

1. HF stands always worked for me. Most/all jackstand failure is from misuse. If you have a brain you will only use on leveled concrete at 1/2 capacity.

2. Anything less than solid 6x6 wood blocks bolted together is both pointlessly expensive and will fall over and kill you dead, dummy.

3. Quit being a miserly bastard and buy some Esco, JackPoint, etc. Whats a life worth? Surely $600 in jackstands is in your budget if you are racing, pleb. 

I honestly see the merit in each position. What says the peanut gallery?

I am currently considering the ESCO 10498-K The -K is important as it includes curved axle-type tops as well. Home Despot seems to have the best deal, as the amazonian ones appear to be counterfits. Second choice is wood blocks.

Anyone got anything better?

 

Links to some previous discussions:

2014 https://grassrootsmotorsports.com/forum/off-topic-discussion/jack-stands/78780/page1/

2015 https://grassrootsmotorsports.com/forum/advertiser-playground/which-jack-stands/102300/page1/

2015 https://grassrootsmotorsports.com/forum/tech-tips/trailer-jacks-as-jack-stands/101556/page1/

2017 (sad) https://classicmotorsports.com/forum/grm/psa-always-use-jackstands/132020/page1/

 

RevRico
RevRico PowerDork
3/28/19 10:49 a.m.

I've had the harbor freight ones a few years, never hammered in any safety things, and they've been good. While desperate right after I got back to PA, I bought a trolley jack and stand convo at pep boys for like $40, and those work great too.

I had the 4000lb crown Vic in the air for several weeks banging on control arms and transmissions with no problems even on gravel, and currently have had the ranger sitting on them about 2 weeks with all 4 wheels in the air. 

mtn
mtn MegaDork
3/28/19 11:19 a.m.

After the tragic 2017 thread (that was my MIL's cousin that passed), I built a set of wood ramps. Now, I only use the jackstands when I'm doing wheels/tires/brakes, which means that I'm not actually under the car. Even then, I'll have the tire in a place that, should I be under the car, while I may get injured should they fail, I'd still be alive.

 

But I don't do work on the car beyond simple stuff, so if I were to get into something more substantial I'd likely build some wood cribs. Solid wood, IMHO, has the least chance of failure. 

Patientzero
Patientzero GRM+ Memberand New Reader
3/28/19 11:27 a.m.

I have a combination of AC Delco from Oreilly's and Harbor Freight jackstands.  I'm embarrased to say my C10 has been sitting on them for over 2 years now with all four wheels off, no issue.

I also have a set of wood wheel cradles I made out of 2"x6"s that work just fine too. 

dj06482
dj06482 GRM+ Memberand UltraDork
3/28/19 11:36 a.m.

I use the heaviest rated Rhino Ramps and either the HF 6 ton jack stands with the rubber covers or a set of Craftsman 3 ton jack stands.

If possible, I leave the floor jack just making contact with the undercarriage and always throw a wheel underneath if it's off the vehicle.

 

Nugi
Nugi Reader
3/28/19 11:53 a.m.

Seems like a lot of similar comments and good input. 

Anyone tried the combination bottle jack / jack stand things? I read mixed reviews, but as most of my cars only have 4 factory lift points (that I trust) it also seems compelling as they are also just under 50 each and are welded to a base plate. Much cheaper, if less robust than the JackPoint style solution.

dps214
dps214 New Reader
3/28/19 12:01 p.m.

I've used the ESCO stands and they are awesome, but I could never quite justify the price. I ended up with a set of heavy duty craftsman stands (https://www.sears.com/craftsman-professional-4-ton-jack-stands-one/p-00950163000P?plpSellerId=Sears&prdNo=1&blockNo=1&blockType=G1) Same basic design as the HF stands but much more robust, with actual feet to distribute the load some, a saddle shape that's actually useful, and really not much more expensive than the HF stands. Couple them with a set of pads (https://www.amazon.com/Ernst-Manufacturing-Stand-Covers-Yellow/dp/B005Z2XA8M/ref=sr_1_1?keywords=jack+stand+pads&qid=1553792272&s=hi&sr=1-1) if you need the extra cushion.

Patientzero
Patientzero GRM+ Memberand New Reader
3/28/19 12:02 p.m.

Almost every bottle jack I've ever used leaked.  I wouldn't consider that an option.

93gsxturbo
93gsxturbo SuperDork
3/28/19 12:24 p.m.

Only a few tips learned from years of struggle

  • Round bottom stands are tippy and suck.  Stay away.  Suggest if you or a friend has them, actively cut them up and throw them away so no one dies under them.
  • 3 ton stands are fine for setting an axle on, or a gas tank, or a drive shaft, or to throw under a corner for a quick brake job.  I wouldnt go under a car on 3 ton stands.  By the time they are at a usable height they are tippy.
  • 6 ton Horrible Freight, Autozone, Etc are just fine.  Had everything from Corvettes and Vipers to 1 ton duallys on mine.  Inspect the cast parts for discontinuties before your first use.
  • Give your car a good wiggle one it is up and before you crawl under.
  • Solid wood blocks are good too.  I have a few sections of railroad ties I cut up with a chainsaw that work well for some applications.
  • Cinder blocks are a big no-no.  
Nugi
Nugi Reader
3/28/19 12:25 p.m.
Patientzero said:

Almost every bottle jack I've ever used leaked.  I wouldn't consider that an option.

 I can relate, most can be rebuilt, however unless squirting oil, it should at least raise the car. The jackstand should be the only thing holding it once lifted though, so should be a safety issue at least. Idk, that was also my main reservation, but my floor jack is just a glorified bottle jack, so maybe its down to quality of the seals/internal design. Admittedly, this one does not seem that great. Boy does it appeal to my lazy side though...

Re: dps214 They are pricey, but I use them a lot, and seem to check all the boxes. At 100/pr vs the usual 70/ea, the hd deal is very tempting. By the time I get 4 cheaper but name brand stands, cushions, the price is not hugely divergent. At least thats what I keep telling myself. ;)

 

Patientzero
Patientzero GRM+ Memberand New Reader
3/28/19 12:37 p.m.
Nugi said:
Patientzero said:

Almost every bottle jack I've ever used leaked.  I wouldn't consider that an option.

 I can relate, most can be rebuilt, however unless squirting oil, it should at least raise the car. The jackstand should be the only thing holding it once lifted though, so should be a safety issue at least. Idk, that was also my main reservation, but my floor jack is just a glorified bottle jack, so maybe its down to quality of the seals/internal design. Admittedly, this one does not seem that great. Boy does it appeal to my lazy side though...

 

 

I thought you meant a bottle jack in substitue of a jack stand, my mistake.  Certainly fine just to raise the car.

KyAllroad (Jeremy)
KyAllroad (Jeremy) UltimaDork
3/28/19 12:51 p.m.

Apparently I have a death wish and use my 3 ton HF stands for everything from the Miata to the Suburban.

 That said I try to use a wheel under the car and leave as many tires on the hubs as possible so I would be scared and inconvenienced by a falling vehicle, but not crushed. 

Nugi
Nugi Reader
3/28/19 1:43 p.m.
93gsxturbo said:
  • Round bottom stands are tippy and suck.  Stay away.  Suggest if you or a friend has them, actively cut them up and throw them away so no one dies under them.

Hear hear. The rounds can roll. I have heard of people cutting off ends to make triangles or squares, but seems better to just toss em (on craigslist maybe).

  • 3 ton stands are fine for setting an axle on, or a gas tank, or a drive shaft, or to throw under a corner for a quick brake job.  I wouldnt go under a car on 3 ton stands.  By the time they are at a usable height they are tippy. 

I feel like this depends on the type. For the hf style 2/3 tons, I always stay at half their rating, and have not had issues, but the height is a problem with any non-sportscar. 

On the other hand, the esco's and some other bigger names are taller and seem better built, while also being a 3 ton.

  • Cinder blocks are a big no-no.  

This cannot be repeated enough. 

Nugi
Nugi Reader
3/28/19 1:45 p.m.

In reply to Patientzero :

Right. Was looking at these last:

amazon.com/Alltrade-640912-Black-All-Bottle/dp/B003ULZGFU

thatsnowinnebago
thatsnowinnebago GRM+ Memberand SuperDork
3/28/19 2:14 p.m.
Nugi said:

Seems like a lot of similar comments and good input. 

Anyone tried the combination bottle jack / jack stand things? I read mixed reviews, but as most of my cars only have 4 factory lift points (that I trust) it also seems compelling as they are also just under 50 each and are welded to a base plate. Much cheaper, if less robust than the JackPoint style solution.

FM sells a nifty little jack adaptor for Miatas that lets you lift the car anywhere along the pinch weld, thus freeing up the factory points for your jack stands. I dont know what you're you're working on, but something similar (or exactly this) could help you out there. It's a poly puck with two slots molded in that allow the puck to go around the pinch weld and contact the unibody. I have one and love it. Totally worth the ~$20 it costs. 

Jack Adaptor

bobzilla
bobzilla MegaDork
3/28/19 3:08 p.m.

I have 6 3-T and 2 6-T stands. Anything heavy or tall, the 6 gets used (like the nose of the wife's sierra, my truck etc). The smaller cars get the 3's as they get me where I need to be. I always leave a jack up to height as well there just in case. 

Nugi
Nugi Reader
3/28/19 3:46 p.m.

In reply to thatsnowinnebago :

I have one of those (from different mfg) from working on my hondas and they work well, but still not perfect as the nd has some plastic around the pinches. They are highly recommended either way. Kind of what the esco does. Hell, I think I have clearly made up my mind and need to just go order them. 

 

Toyman01
Toyman01 GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
3/28/19 4:10 p.m.

I have 4, 3 ton aluminum jack stands from Harbor Freight. I've been using them for 10+ years. They have held up everything from the Abomination to a F350 dually. 

I also have 2, 12 ton jack stands for when I really need something in the air. 

If I'm crawling around under the car, I also keep at least two wheels under something solid to catch it if it falls.

Since I bought the lift, I don't spend as much time with cars on jack stands. 

 

 

Nugi
Nugi Reader
3/28/19 4:24 p.m.
Toyman01 said:

Since I bought the lift, I don't spend as much time with cars on jack stands. 

Oh sure, a lift is clearly the solution. /thread

Color me jealous. Stay awesome.

 

Edit: this came off overly snarky, oops. 

BTD
BTD Reader
3/28/19 4:49 p.m.

https://grassrootsmotorsports.com/forum/grm/outrageous-claim-expensive-jackstands-are-worth-the-money/138310/page1/

 

I had this same debate, and bought the ESCOs. To me, it was a one time expense and I've long since forgotten about the cost. My safety, and the peace of mind that I won't leave my loved ones stranded is well worth the expense IMO. 

 

I won't use anything else. 

Nugi
Nugi Reader
3/28/19 5:26 p.m.

In reply to BTD :

Ok, if I wasn't sold I am now. 

This is now a where to find cheap ESCOs thread. 

So far the best I have found is:

https://www.homedepot.com/p/ESCO-3-Ton-Performance-Jack-Stand-Kit-10498-K/306368899

100usd/pr inc shipping at time of this post.

(Note these are the -K) 

Other options are the 10499 for shorter cars, but have not seen a k variant, and frankly could use the extra height. 

 

Edit: did i just link a single stand? 

ManhattanM (fka NY535iManual)
ManhattanM (fka NY535iManual) Reader
3/28/19 5:52 p.m.

As in the other threads, I’m a big fan of the Esco’s. Pricey, but coupons for 20% off  seem to come around regularly. 

I switched from the sears 3 ton stands. The biggest improvement —besides stability— is how high I can get the car, makes it really easy to slide under a car, and for the first time became possible to use the creeper that came with the sears kit. 

Toyman01
Toyman01 GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
3/28/19 8:15 p.m.
Toyman01 said: in this thread...

I have 4, 3 ton aluminum jack stands from Harbor Freight. I've been using them for 10+ years. They have held up everything from the Abomination to a F350 dually. 

I also have 2, 12 ton jack stands for when I really need something in the air. 

If I'm crawling around under the car, I also keep at least two wheels under something solid to catch it if it falls.

Since I bought the lift, I don't spend as much time with cars on jack stands. 

 

 

And in the last thread...

I have 4 HF aluminum stands that get used for most jobs, they have been perfect for 10 years. If more altitude is needed, I have a set of HF 12 tons are plenty high enough. 

If I'm rolling around jerking on things, I've already tried to knock the car off the stands to make sure it's stable. I also use wheels or wood cribbing as a oh E36 M3 support. 

Do I get an A for consistency?  

Oh, and the lift is nice. If you can swing it, and have a space to bolt it down, do so. It is by far one of my favorite "tools". 

Floating Doc
Floating Doc GRM+ Memberand Dork
3/28/19 9:31 p.m.

I guess I should be dead. 

Mostly just lift a Miata. The eskos look good, I'll have to get a set

dps214
dps214 New Reader
3/29/19 1:03 p.m.
thatsnowinnebago said:
Nugi said:

Seems like a lot of similar comments and good input. 

Anyone tried the combination bottle jack / jack stand things? I read mixed reviews, but as most of my cars only have 4 factory lift points (that I trust) it also seems compelling as they are also just under 50 each and are welded to a base plate. Much cheaper, if less robust than the JackPoint style solution.

FM sells a nifty little jack adaptor for Miatas that lets you lift the car anywhere along the pinch weld, thus freeing up the factory points for your jack stands. I dont know what you're you're working on, but something similar (or exactly this) could help you out there. It's a poly puck with two slots molded in that allow the puck to go around the pinch weld and contact the unibody. I have one and love it. Totally worth the ~$20 it costs. 

Jack Adaptor

I haven't owned a miata for 2+ years but I still have and regularly use the jack pad adapter (the old school metal version, the plastic one they have now is probably better in a lot of ways). It's not perfect and I probably wouldn't use it on a car I really, really cared about but it works. It's a little bit shorter than the pinch weld on the fiesta but it still adds a lot of stability to the system. It's slightly pushed in the underside of the rocker on the boxster but there's no other even remotely feasibly way to jack up the whole side of the car at once. The M roadster doesn't really have a pinch weld (well it does, but it seems to be folded over such that it's just an extra thick area on the floorboard). I've been jacking there with just a standard rubber puck with no issues or damage done.

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