Unsafe Jack Stands?

Messages
550
Location
Wisconsin
I'm cleaning out my shop. In my collection of stuff I have a couple of 2-ton K-Mart jack stands from around 1980. They are the ones made from a piece of steel tubing split to form three legs, and have the adjustable center part held in place with a pin on a chain. When I'm going under the car, I use a more modern ratchet type 4-legged set, but I still use the old ones to hold up one end of a car when rotating tires. This type used to be very common, sold under a zillion brands, but hasn't been sold for a long time. I think they might have been pulled because they were unstable or could collapse. Anybody remember these and the story behind them? Should I keep using them for non critical applications, or should I recycle them and buy another newer set?
 
Messages
12,385
Location
Northern CA
I dumped mine several years ago becuse they were highly stressed sheetmetal of unknown quantity that depended on some spot welds of unknown quality for stability. It's iffy using just having them around. Even if you don't plan on working under your car on them, sooner or later someone will have part of their body under the car while the car is on the cheezy stands.
 
Messages
276
Location
CA
I don't know what kind of jack stands he was using, but my grandfather's friend died because he got crushed under his BMW by failed jack stands.
 
Messages
2,837
Location
MO
"Anybody remember these and the story behind them?" Don't think there were any survivors to tell the sordid tale.
 
Messages
6,171
Location
Santa Barbara, CA
Maybe I should stop using mine before you guys read about an incident involving myself? I always like the wide U area on them. Lately, though if I'm under the car I put a pair of stands and then one extra at a shorter height behind one side, so I have a 'backup'.
 
Messages
36,464
Location
ME
Extra jack stands are handy when, say, pulling a transmission. I'd keep 'em around. They'd be good to have if you wind up with a project car that, for reasons of slowness, winds up on them for a whole season: freeing up the "good" set.
 
Messages
421
Location
LUBBOCK, TX
I have a set that I still use. However, I made a modification to them. I made a 1 foot square X 1/8th thick steel plate. I welded the three legs to the steel plates. This seems to strengthen them enough to used safely.
 

BigAl

Thread starter
Messages
550
Location
Wisconsin
My welder is up for sale on eBay right now. Maybe I'll reinforce the snot out of them before it sells. . . . or maybe I'll use a fraction of the proceeds of the sale to buy a better set . . .
 
Messages
4,499
Location
Massachusetts
Keep 'em for the extra steel. If they were mine, I'd cut them up and use them to repair my Jeep's frame or trail ravaged driveshafts [LOL!] No sense wasting good patching metal.
 

crw

Messages
1,715
Location
Pocatello, ID
This kind of reminds me how we changed tires when I was in high school. My buddies simply lined up at the bumper of the car and lifted. I had to work quickly to get the new tire on before they "tired". Those were the days.....
 

BigAl

Thread starter
Messages
550
Location
Wisconsin
quote:
Originally posted by Zaedock: Keep 'em for the extra steel. If they were mine, I'd cut them up and use them to repair my Jeep's frame or trail ravaged driveshafts [LOL!] No sense wasting good patching metal.
I sold my jeep a couple of years ago, and am trying to sell off my welder. Nice idea though. [Smile] I haven't been doing any major car projects lately. I'm playing a lot of fingerstyle guitar at church and don't want to risk breaking a fingernail. Wait, that's just wrong. . . . A married man shouldn't have to worry about that sort of thing! [Eek!] I'll probably pitch the old stands. I'll recycle the bases one week and the saddles the next . . . so nobody salvages them and sues me. [ September 14, 2006, 02:26 PM: Message edited by: BigAl ]
 

BigAl

Thread starter
Messages
550
Location
Wisconsin
On Saturday, I looked at those old jack stands again. They were really lightweight. I'm not sure why I ever trusted them even 20 years ago. I took them down to the recycling center with some other sc-rap metal that afternoon. I guess I'll eventually have to find a different way to die. [Happy] [ September 18, 2006, 11:55 AM: Message edited by: BigAl ]
 
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