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Thread: Axle stands

  1. #1

    Default Axle stands

    I've just gone out and gotten a pair of axle stands and when I got them out of the box I noticed they weren't the same as the ones in the picture. The top of them are smooth but the ones on the box have a notch for a uni body car. Question is can I still use these on my unibody.

  2. #2

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    Depends on what kind of work you are doing. You can place them under the A arms. Not sure what kind of car you are working on. But you may need a special adapter. You can also use the jack provided with your car in place of a axle stand.

  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by huskvarna View Post
    I've just gone out and gotten a pair of axle stands and when I got them out of the box I noticed they weren't the same as the ones in the picture. The top of them are smooth but the ones on the box have a notch for a uni body car. Question is can I still use these on my unibody.
    I'd be very hesitant to use them if they don't have the notch/groove for unibody. Suppose you get cranking on a bolt that's rusted on. The last thing you want is for the car to shift on the jack stand because there's no notch. Is there any kind of a recess to them, or are they completely flat? If they're completely flat, return them and buy something different.

    And whatever you do, do not do mechanic work with the jack provided with the car! Those are meant for very temporary use and in situations where you won't even have to reach under the car let alone crawl underneath of it. For mechanic work, buy and use proper jack stands.

    Speaking of which, I recommend Harbor Freight. I bought a set of 6-Ton jack stands there for $40, and they work flawlessly. They hold up my giant '78 Continental without so much as flexing or groaning. Actually, the last time I had the Continental in the air, the jack stands held but my asphalt driveway now has little grooves in it from the jack stand feet digging in. (FYI my Continental weighs about 4,800 pounds, which is why I went for six-ton jack stands. I firmly believe in overkill if it comes to something that's going to hold up a big weight while I'm underneath of it.)

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by GoldDragonAurkarm View Post
    Speaking of which, I recommend Harbor Freight.
    Love that place. I'm fortunate to have one a couple miles away.

  5. #5

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    Thanks for the help. I want to replace the CVs so I need to get under the car. I refuse to to anything more than a break pad replacement if it's just on the jack. I will take them back and they will hopefully have something more suitable.

  6. #6

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    you can still use them, but if you have welding gear, you could attach some lips or suchlike to form a cradle or cup effect. otherwise, it's a case of placing some heavy duty rubber or soft wood (pine) between the contact points of car and stand. also, if the top of the stand has a threaded hole, supplementary pad/supports may be bought and fitted.

    additionally, it's a good idea (or what ought be standard practice) to place whatever roadwheels are removed beneath the vehicle, as close to jacking points or weighty areas as can be....... just in case (i've known cars to slip of axle stands).

    [edit] i usually use a car ramp, with soft wood, to support the car when doing driveshafts. it's a safer option than axle stands (no wobbliness). perhaps it'd be better to take the stands back and get ramps, instead ???

    btw, and just so you know, i wrote this about 12 hours ago, but Kaspersky f**ked up again after an update and crashed the PC. these post 2010 cause more problems than they solve.

  7. #7

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    I went back to the store and they are the only ones they have. I've found some with the grove but they are too short and cost twice as much. I think I will get some strips of rubber (should be able to score some from work) and put them under the car to stop it slipping about.

    Also to ade ramp would be a better option but I need to remove the wheels because im doing the front axles.

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by huskvarna View Post
    I went back to the store and they are the only ones they have. I've found some with the grove but they are too short and cost twice as much. I think I will get some strips of rubber (should be able to score some from work) and put them under the car to stop it slipping about.

    Also to ade ramp would be a better option but I need to remove the wheels because im doing the front axles.
    Your solution sounds like it should work ok. I'm sure you'll do this, but I'll state it for the lurkers that might run across this-make sure you test that setup (or whatever you wind up doing) before you crawl underneath. Give the car a good shake like you're really reefing on a bolt or whatever and make sure it's stable. Like I said, I lean toward overkill on a setup that's suspending multiple tons of weight over me, so if it so much as looks like it's going to wobble, I change the setup until it's rock-solid.

    Ade also has good advice about a supplementary stop as a safety in case of jack stand failure. I'll add that it's a good practice to chock the wheels that are still on the ground from both directions to prevent the car from shifting/rolling/slipping. If you do it right, the setup will be rock-solid. Hell, when we replaced the stabilizer arm on Mr. Aurkarm's Town Car, I was smashing the bolt with a mini-sledge as hard as I could trying to break it free after 15 years of rust, and neither car nor stands creaked, wobbled, or otherwise showed signs of instability.

    So now here's an important question-what's the car? Seriously, though, good luck, be safe, and report back on how it went eh?

  9. #9

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    I didn't see where you mentioned the kind of car. Even unibody cars usually have some kind of partial frame rail that's suitable for a jack stand.

    As for asphalt driveways, I keep a couple of pieces of half inch plywood around to put under the legs of the jackstand so it doesn't dig into the asphalt. Even in the garage, I use the plywood so the paint on the floored doesn't get scraped up or the concrete chipped.

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by huskvarna View Post
    Also to ade ramp would be a better option but I need to remove the wheels because im doing the front axles.
    i meant to use the ramps as stands; i meant to post a pic to illustrate, but the only one i can find doesn't show it too well.
    Attachment 13468
    if you look to the left, you can just see the ramp supporting the car.
    i'm about to jack up the other side of the car, in the pic, to change the lower suspension arms. i'd never do anything like that with axle stands as they're just not trustworthy.
    additionally, with ramps as stands, you end up with less distortion of the vehicle shell; only really an issue if you're in and out of the vehicle whilst working on it, but the distortion can sometimes still be there once the vehicle is on the road again, if it's been stood on axle stands for a while.....or if somebody left a door ajar.

    anyway, be safe. i once knew a bloke who had a car fall on his head; it left him seriously disabled and he eventually died of his injuries some years after.

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