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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Gents,
I myself have never really been a big fan of Hilift jacks. I do see the need and, the practical use of them, in various situations. And, because of those various situations, I carry a Hilift. In fact, the Hilift I have is fairly close to brand new. It's the 48" model. Well, we just went on a run outside of Kingman AZ the other day and, one of the boys lost a bead on his right front, of his Cherokee. So, I was elected to retrieve my Hilift and put it to work.

Well, everything was fine, GOING UP with the jack. But, once the tire and wheel was changed, it was time to go back down, with the jack. It's a good thing that all personnel were out of the way, because that tire was still 3" off the ground when I flipped that lever and, move the handle one movement, to start the down process when, BOOM, that car dropped to the ground, IN ONE SHOT!

This is not the first time I've experienced a Hilift dropping a car, all in one shot. I had an older one that did it and, I disassembled it almost all the way down to the point where, it could not be taken apart any further and, found no defect or fault that was really obvious. But, as stated earlier, this is an almost brand new one. It's been used a total of about twice.

I know that in the manual for it, it does state:

The jack must have a load of 150 lbs. or more to lower step-by-step. Otherwise, the lifting mechanism will slide down to the base plate, dropping your load.

Well, while I'm not an authority of what each corner of an older regular Cherokee weighs, I'm pretty damn sure that, lifting one corner (by the front bumper), to the point there the right front tire is 3" off the ground, that I'm WAAAAAAY OVER 150 lbs. So, once that tire and wheel were changed and the lugs were snugged enough for weight to be placed on the wheel/tire, that, that jack, SHOULD have descended in a step-by-step movement and, not all in one movement.

At this point, I'm pretty sure that I can NEVER, EVER trust this jack, at least for the down movement. Yes, it works find on the UP movement and holds the weight just fine. It's the down movement that is all screwed up. Anyone have any ideas here?
Scott









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I'm no expert on Hi Lifts, but could this behavior happen due to poor or dirty lubrication causing pins to stick? You say your jack hasn't been used much, but has it been idly hanging off the Jeep for a year or two collecting dust without being lubed?
 

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Typically, I did PM work on my High Lift at the same time I was servicing my Jeep each Fall before a big trip that I regularly took. Then, each Spring, I’d remove the jack from its case, put it through a lift and lower cycle, and re-service if needed.
Jack is 20 years old and still flawlessly performs.
 

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Mine is relatively new as well... It's been used twice and both times it REFUSED to lower the vehicle at all. It wouldn't step by step or drop it. But it seems to function with no load.

HATE using it...
 

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They are an ancient design and depending on the quality of metal used YES the pins stick.
So lube and use it to get the pins to actually work.
Don't rip it out of the box and expect it to be ready to go.
Its like any good wood working tools, never trust the edge from the store, put your own edge on all your tools.


And they really aren't a "jack" per say, its a Farm Tool, thats what they should really be thought of.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I'm no expert on Hi Lifts, but could this behavior happen due to poor or dirty lubrication causing pins to stick? You say your jack hasn't been used much, but has it been idly hanging off the Jeep for a year or two collecting dust without being lubed?

DesertRubi,
Well, it's possible that *might* be the case. But, in at least my case, the jack is mounted horizontally, right on top of the front bumper and, it has that wazoo zippered cover that covers the entire mechanical mechanism. Does it SEAL it, well, not quite but, that lifting part is well protected.

Mine is relatively new as well... It's been used twice and both times it REFUSED to lower the vehicle at all. It wouldn't step by step or drop it. But it seems to function with no load.

HATE using it...
Pressureized,
I'm kinda right there with ya Pal. I bought this damn thing from a friend and, it was still all wrapped up and had tags and stuff all over it 'cause it was brand new. So, I can ASSUME it's not any form of defective. But, as stated earlier, I am reluctant to use it. At least if I'm gonna use it, I'm gonna make damn sure that there's no humanoids around the vehicle when I start the DOWN procedure.

They are an ancient design and depending on the quality of metal used YES the pins stick.
So lube and use it to get the pins to actually work.
Don't rip it out of the box and expect it to be ready to go.
Its like any good wood working tools, never trust the edge from the store, put your own edge on all your tools.


And they really aren't a "jack" per say, its a Farm Tool, thats what they should really be thought of.
screwlose,

Well, I kind-a agree with you in that, they were, at one time, primarily a farm equipment tool. But, as we in the Jeep world know, they migrated into the "jeep equipment" list decades ago. Not all carry it for sure. But, you do see them mounted in all kinds of various ways, inside and outside the Jeep. So, with all that being said, one would think that, if a company is gonna be in business, selling something that could hurt someone, that they'd make all efforts to make sure that it's component WORKS, EACH AND EVERY TIME!

But, apparently, this issue is not of any major concern. As stated, I had one quite a few years ago, that did the same exact thing, dropped to the ground, even with more than the minimum requirement of 150 # on it. Apparently they have no plans on improving them. If one is gonna buy one and use it, then one takes the chance or gamble, that it's gonna works at least some what correctly.

I carry one, but I hope that I never have to use it. The bottle jack and a block of wood seems to cover all my situations to date.
Well, I gotta say, Amen to the use of a Bottle jack. I carry a small, 1.5 ton in my tool bag. It has limited use due to the requirements of fit etc. But, if and when I've used it, IT has never failed, going UP or DOWN!
Scott
 
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Mine works great. But unlike most folks, I keep it well lubricated; that's the key.
 
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screwlose,

Well, I kind-a agree with you in that, they were, at one time, primarily a farm equipment tool. But, as we in the Jeep world know, they migrated into the "jeep equipment" list decades ago. Not all carry it for sure. But, you do see them mounted in all kinds of various ways, inside and outside the Jeep. So, with all that being said, one would think that, if a company is gonna be in business, selling something that could hurt someone, that they'd make all efforts to make sure that it's component WORKS, EACH AND EVERY TIME!

But, apparently, this issue is not of any major concern. As stated, I had one quite a few years ago, that did the same exact thing, dropped to the ground, even with more than the minimum requirement of 150 # on it. Apparently they have no plans on improving them. If one is gonna buy one and use it, then one takes the chance or gamble, that it's gonna works at least some what correctly.

Find me a power tool that isn't dangerous unless used specifically in the way intended.
And I carry a Farm Tool myself, and an axe and a shovel and a ton of dangerous things.
I also used the Farm Tool as a previous FD volunteer so I know its strengths and weaknesses, its a great tool for certain situations, its an ok jack.
I would not use it as a jack unless it was the last resort.
 

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I have one my self and have used it a few times, like when I was taking my door off trying to loosen it up) and the jack functions as intended, losers as expected, I looked to see if I have stuck pins and they seem to function properly, granted I bought mine back IIRC in the mid 2000's when I had my F150....
 

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I have one. I have used it ti replace a pickup truck bed (Yes, it was a ******* moment), to lift a pickup bed to replace a fuel pump, break a tire bead and finally, last weekend, to change a tire because the scissors jack just couldn't be used for where I was on the trail.

Someone else provided me with the JeepsNeeds D Ring adapter and man, that is something I need to consider to add to my kit. I wish they were not quite so proud of it but it's the only one out there.
 

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I have one. I have used it ti replace a pickup truck bed (Yes, it was a ******* moment), to lift a pickup bed to replace a fuel pump, break a tire bead and finally, last weekend, to change a tire because the scissors jack just couldn't be used for where I was on the trail.

Someone else provided me with the JeepsNeeds D Ring adapter and man, that is something I need to consider to add to my kit. I wish they were not quite so proud of it but it's the only one out there.

Have you seen the SAM-2?
https://jeepsneeds.com/collections/gear/products/jeepsneeds-sam-for-hi-lift-jack


Or the SAM-U?
https://jeepsneeds.com/products/sam-u-jk
 

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I had not. The DLA was what we used. The SAM-2 looks like a cost effective replacement.
 

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The SAM-2 looks like a cost effective replacement.
Wow, it still costs as much as a 48” Hi Lift (and 15 bucks more than I paid for mine 5 years ago.)
 

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+1 on using the SAM-2. I’ve used mine several times in conjunction with my Hi-Lift and it does make a shaky situation a bit more stable.

I’ll also testify to the importance of lubrication. I carry my jack on the hood and have a good cover for the mechanism...BUT...I also carry a can of silicone spray lube and before I use the jack, I spray the mechanism liberally and cycle everything before I put it to work. It’s folly to think that a tool like this can be carried for extended periods of time and expect it to work flawlessly without some basic maintenance.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I have one. I have used it ti replace a pickup truck bed (Yes, it was a ******* moment), to lift a pickup bed to replace a fuel pump, break a tire bead and finally, last weekend, to change a tire because the scissors jack just couldn't be used for where I was on the trail.

Someone else provided me with the JeepsNeeds D Ring adapter and man, that is something I need to consider to add to my kit. I wish they were not quite so proud of it but it's the only one out there.
Yeah, I saw that Jeepneeds thing quite a while back and decided that, it's nothing but a piece of rectangular tubing. So, I took a couple measurements of the tongue of that Hilift and, procured some tubing. I think a 1' section of it cost me about 50 cents at a metal yard remnant section. I just started cutting on it 'till things started to fit and, looked like the one Jeepneeds sells. A little refinement here and there and, you see in the pictures, what I created. While it's not as pretty as the Jeepneeds version, it sure as heck works perfect and, as stated, cost me about a buck and an hours time.
Scott

P.S. What you see near or, around the holes for the large pins are some reinforcement washers to make sure that the holes can take the stress of lifting the Jeep. Works slick.
 

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I've never had an issue with mine, but I also keep it inside the Jeep
 

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Yeah, I saw that Jeepneeds thing quite a while back and decided that, it's nothing but a piece of rectangular tubing. So, I took a couple measurements of the tongue of that Hilift and, procured some tubing. I think a 1' section of it cost me about 50 cents at a metal yard remnant section. I just started cutting on it 'till things started to fit and, looked like the one Jeepneeds sells. A little refinement here and there and, you see in the pictures, what I created. While it's not as pretty as the Jeepneeds version, it sure as heck works perfect and, as stated, cost me about a buck and an hours time.
Scott

P.S. What you see near or, around the holes for the large pins are some reinforcement washers to make sure that the holes can take the stress of lifting the Jeep. Works slick.

Very nice. I wish I had been that industrious before I bought mine. One feature of the SAM-2 that yours does not have but would be easy to add is the hole (and pin) that locks it onto the jaw of the jack so that it doesn't slip off of the jack.
 

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I am thinking of making them out of red plastic. Fake, but light weight and cheap. Looks real. Along with a winch and off road lights, all fake, cheap, lightweight. Easy to install and looks cool. In So Cal that's all you need,,,LOLOL!! Along with a bucket of fake mud,,, LOL!! Dent and scratch decals. LOLOL, my sides are hurting!!
 
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I have never needed to use mine, thankfully. I carry a bottle jack from SafeJack with a bunch of extensions at all times, and that's always been enough. But I've also never wound up high centered. There have been times when I thought I might wind up that way and brought the hi-lift along. On those occasions, I've sprayed all of the bits and pieces with silicone spray and done a quick weightless up-and-down. I also bring the spray with me because hey, you never know. Besides, I like the smell.

If you really want an alternative, you can buy one of the newer ARB jacks. Just be ready for some sticker shock when you look it up.
 
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