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      02-16-2019, 09:24 PM   #1
roastbeef
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Lets talk about garage lifts!

I'm interested in hearing about lifts you guys have... pros and cons. i'm not opposed to any single design, but budget is going to be reasonable- no in-ground hydraulics. ideally, i would be able to use the lift for doing my own work, but i would like to also be able to store one car over another.

pictures are appreciated!
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      02-16-2019, 10:28 PM   #2
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Thought about this for years, but I do not have the height in my 2 car under for a lift. Have been working on my own cars for many years and it is so much easier with a post lift. If I did not live in the Northeast with winter weather I would put one in my driveway. If I bought another home, top priority would be 2 car detached garage with high ceilings. Next best is a Quick Lift, which is what I use now. BTW, what does track is srs mean on your screen name?

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      02-16-2019, 10:53 PM   #3
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well, mrs beef and i found a place that suits all of our needs, but doesn't have a three car garage we wanted. however, it has side parking, which is more valuable than a three car garage for us. the garage height isn't super high... i might have to modify the garage door rails to get it up against the ceiling when its open, but if i can park two cars, i'd be happy. i don't need it 10' up in the air. i'll have to measure, but i think its doable.
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      02-16-2019, 10:56 PM   #4
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Maxjax is a great lift for lower ceilings.
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      02-16-2019, 11:54 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by TheeGovernor View Post
Maxjax is a great lift for lower ceilings.
i think i want something semi-permanent. i'll also have to check and see if the property is on a post tension or a regular slab if bolts are needed.
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      02-17-2019, 04:00 AM   #6
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check out this lift. one of the things i dig about it is optional rolling hydraulic jacks that fit between the ramps. i'll have to check and see if they extend as far out as i would need for the m3's jacking points.

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      02-17-2019, 05:34 AM   #7
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There are a lot of threads on this subject. Here's the short of it. The most economical and best suited for real mechanical work is an above ground 2-post lift. They basically come in two versions, with the cables and hydraulics either running over the top of the columns, or on the floor between the columns under a guard plate. Most need a 12' ceiling height. Bend pack makes one for a 9' ceiling. These lifts need a minimum of 4" slab and 3,000 psi concrete. They use 240VAC power, but Rotary does now have a 12V DC (car battery) powered system. Depending on what manufacturer you go with, $4,500 installed is a good ball park top number.

The MaxJack, and QuickJacks are nice, but are compromises. A real full size lift let's you stand on your feet comfortably for hours at a time and gives you access to all parts of the chassis. Once you experience working on a car standing comfortably on your feet, you will not go back to kneeling during brake work, or on your back dropping a transmission.

If you want storage capability over mechanical accessibility then a 4-post is a better choice.

I have a Rotary SPOA 10. It's a 10,000 pound, asymeterical two-post. I've had it for 14 years and it's saved me over $20K in shop labor.

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      02-17-2019, 07:21 AM   #8
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thanks, i think i'm set on the four post design... definitely not going with a quick jack, i want to be able to park a car under it.
the reason i want to go with a four post is i have a very oddly balanced solid axle 4x4 that i'll work on occasionally. i don't know what it weighs, but its heavily front biased.
although the truck won't be stored under/over it, i think i can still get two cars stored without a high clearance garage (i'm not sure what the height is, i'll have to check).
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      02-17-2019, 09:15 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by roastbeef View Post
thanks, i think i'm set on the four post design... definitely not going with a quick jack, i want to be able to park a car under it.
the reason i want to go with a four post is i have a very oddly balanced solid axle 4x4 that i'll work on occasionally. i don't know what it weighs, but its heavily front biased.
although the truck won't be stored under/over it, i think i can still get two cars stored without a high clearance garage (i'm not sure what the height is, i'll have to check).
Unless the truck is heavily modified, like something Jay Leno would build, a 2-post lift would have no problem lifting it.
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      02-17-2019, 09:28 AM   #10
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I chose the Direct Lift Pro 9000 with two rolling hydraulic jacks. I too have a difficult vehicle to get positioned on a two post, plus I also park a vehicle underneath a vehicle. It does everything I could want regarding doing general maintenance and modifications and it's definitely one of those "I should have done it sooner" (purchasing the lift).
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      02-17-2019, 10:08 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by roastbeef View Post
thanks, i think i'm set on the four post design... definitely not going with a quick jack, i want to be able to park a car under it.
the reason i want to go with a four post is i have a very oddly balanced solid axle 4x4 that i'll work on occasionally. i don't know what it weighs, but its heavily front biased.
although the truck won't be stored under/over it, i think i can still get two cars stored without a high clearance garage (i'm not sure what the height is, i'll have to check).
So let me throw an idea at you. Some people are uncomfortable with leaving a car on a 2 post lift because the suspension hangs unsupported. While I've left my car for weeks at a time on my lift when working on it only on the weekends and never had an issue with the suspension (I'm still on most all the original bushings), I know BMW owners are BOCD (Beyond OCD), so I 'll not argue the point. In weather emergencies I store two of my BMWs in the garage bay with the lift, one on top of the other, so I do occasionally use my lift for 2-car storage.

But if I were afflicted with BOCD, and had a two post lift and wanted to store two cars, I'd just use four (4) under-hoist jack stands, one under each wheel and lightly set the car down to put some load on the suspension. Using these:
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      02-17-2019, 10:20 AM   #12
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I use the bend pack post lift good up to 10k pounds works like a charm one of the bests lifts out there
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      02-17-2019, 10:56 AM   #13
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I bought an amazing house .. but didn't consider garage ceiling height at the time. I'm pissed. I spent yesterday laying on the cold concrete bleeding the clutch. I hate being under there, I get disoriented after a while and am in fear of an instantaneous crushing death every second.

The quick jack etc doesn't really seem worth it. Yeah it's faster and less of a hassle than the floor jack and stands, but you're on your knees or hunched over. I would rather rent a garage with a proper two post.
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      02-17-2019, 08:18 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 3798j View Post
I chose the Direct Lift Pro 9000 with two rolling hydraulic jacks. I too have a difficult vehicle to get positioned on a two post, plus I also park a vehicle underneath a vehicle. It does everything I could want regarding doing general maintenance and modifications and it's definitely one of those "I should have done it sooner" (purchasing the lift).
Nice. That looks great!
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      02-17-2019, 08:33 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by YuminNuman View Post
I bought an amazing house .. but didn't consider garage ceiling height at the time. I'm pissed. I spent yesterday laying on the cold concrete bleeding the clutch. I hate being under there, I get disoriented after a while and am in fear of an instantaneous crushing death every second.

The quick jack etc doesn't really seem worth it. Yeah it's faster and less of a hassle than the floor jack and stands, but you're on your knees or hunched over. I would rather rent a garage with a proper two post.
I'm also OCD on the being afraid of being crushed. I bought 2 more jack stands to put on the subframe nearby where I work just in case in addition to the 4 jack points resting on jack stands plus I keep my jack slightly under the jack point as another measure.

But yeah... a lift would be really nice.
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      03-18-2019, 02:47 AM   #16
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Depends if you want to store a car or work on one.
2 Post is better if you want to work on a car. It will require a higher quality floor with very little slope (< 3 degrees I think)
4 Post is better for storage and does not require your floor to be as good or as flat
You can get add ons to your 4 post to so you can work on your car but that is an additional expense.
Some 2 posts you can unbolt when you do not need.
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