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Screw Jack for Expedition Use


RichardAllen
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I have been looking for an axle stand for expedition use, mostly for wheel changing, but maybe for repairs too.

My normal axle stands are sturdy enough but very bulky.

I have read many bad experience of fold-up axle stands, most of which, I believe are no longer sold.

My hi-lift is essentially unstable; I am aware of the trick of putting a wheel under the chassis which saved a lot of damage when the vehicle toppled off the hi-lift once (no one underneath !)

I am clear that a hydraulic jack should never be relied on as an axle stand.

I am not keen on the space and hassle of an air jack, which does also assume the engine is running.

On the basis that for an expedition everything should have at least 2 uses, can an old-fashioned screw jack be used as a reliable axle-stand, assuming it has a wide enough base, or can be attached to one ?

Does anyone have any other cunning ideas ?

All wisdom gratefully received.

Regards

Richard

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Hi Richard,

Axle stands is something really serious. I strongly recommend you the use of something with a wide base, like a 3T stand. If it's going to be used offroad, you can solder some kind of wider base to it, allways chosing the oversized/safe way.

On the other hand, if there are some size/space constraints, you can modify (be aware of the involved risk) an existing stand to attach it over a wheel rim. This increases stability (if the stand is screwed to the rim) and saves some space/weight. And, if everything fails, the rim is still there as a last resource.

Carlos

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I used to have an old (possibly military?) screw jack which fitted very nicely inside a ratchet type axle stand. Although neither technically had two uses, it did save space. The jack doubled as a hammer more than once though!

I reinforced the lids on the battery box and fuel tank in my 90 to use under the jack and stand to spread the load on soft ground.

Si

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Standby for a chorus of flaming, but on tour I don't usually bother with axle stands. My jack is a 20T bottle jack with a big plate welded on the top, which has numerous other uses (pressing bushes, bending/straightening, anvil, seat...), it fits under the back seat (a Defender front seat) and has plenty of lift and a good size base & top.

Generally if anyone needs to spend any period of time under a vehicle, either the wheels go back on or a bit of scenery (log, rock, spare wheel, small child, suzuki, etc.) is pressed into service. On rough/soft ground this is often better (more stable) than a proper axle stand anyway.

Axle stands are just so rarely required and take up relatively lots of space / weight. If a hi-lift must be used then the bottle jack can double as an axle stand.

Now, before the shouting starts this is purely personal choice based on the circumstances we usually operate in and I'm fully aware of the risks, and work accordingly. Aside from emergency solo tyre changes, there are always others present and more jacks/scenery available if the safety factor needs to be upped. Portals help too, if it drops onto its hubs you've still got as much clearance under the chassis as under a normal truck with its wheels still attached :P

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