When undertaking any kind of automotive project or maintenance when working in your home garage the importance of having the right tools for the job cannot be overstated. Whilst you can get by in some cases with makeshift tools or the wrong tools for the job, it’s certainly much easier, much safer, and far more efficient to prepare for the task ahead by getting every tool you may need to complete the task as painlessly as possible.
In this particular case I am beginning the process of restoring my much loved 1969 HT GTS Monaro. As I decided to embark on a life altering career change, which involved completing a Bachelor of Marketing, the old Monaro was sadly neglected for many years. Until now.
First things first, I needed to move the car out of the shed so I could inspect the car thoroughly to check what kind of condition it was in as it had been sitting for the best part of 7 years. On a previous inspection it was discovered the rear drum brakes had locked on, so the decision was made to purchase a pair of Hydraulic Vehicle Positioning Jacks to enable the vehicle to be moved out of the shed as needed throughout the restoration process. The vehicle is currently not running and will have periods without an engine and driveline as a complete body off restoration will be required, so this was decided as being the best option to enable a smooth and easy completion of the project.
I secured a pair of the positioning jacks from the Supercheap Auto Lawnton store and was surprised at the size of the packaging. I squeezed both boxes into my Barina and headed to the shed. Upon opening the boxes it was evident as to why they were so large. In order to fully open and close upon the wheel and tyre, thus lifting the vehicle off the ground, they had to be larger than the lower portion that remains in contact with the ground. The arms of each jack close inwards as they foot pump is depressed, slowly propping up the car via the wheel and tyre, allowing the vehicle to be moved in any direction via the four directional castors on the base. You may have seen these used on race cars in the V8 Supercars series.
Before they can be used the reservoir needs to be bleed to ensure proper operation of the jack. Pumping up the system then slightly cracking the bleed nipple completes the process and is quite simple even for those who struggle mechanically. Upon initial use the arms were extremely tight and it took quite a lot of effort to move the arms outwards. They were a little stiff due to being in the box for some time but I found some extra grease on the arms made the process significantly easier. The only major downside of this kind of jack is trying to pick up and move them around, which often results in getting a decent covering of grease on your hands. They are quite awkward to hold and manoeuvre and require you to precisely grab the jack to prevent this happening. With a little practice this becomes much easier.
Storage can also be another big issue. The product works great and delivers on the promise on the box however like many workshop products they are big and bulky, so finding a place to store them when not in use becomes an issue for those with limited shed space, like myself. That’s where an SCA Vehicle Positioning Jack Stand can come in handy.
In terms of using the product they performed better than I could have imagined. The propped up the car quickly and easily. The castor wheels rolled just enough to get the car moving but not enough that if on an incline they would roll away. They were also rock solid when moving over gaps in the concrete and over a plastic gutter between the shed and the driveway. At no point did I feel they would give way or get stuck, nor did they move on the wheel.
So, in spite of a few grease and space issues these are a great product for those ambitious souls looking to tackle a home restoration project!