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Another method for jacking / lifting / supporting C6 - PICS!!!

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Old 02-06-2006, 01:32 AM   #1
Vet
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Default Another method for jacking / lifting / supporting C6 - PICS!!!

Here is a method for jacking and supporting a C6 using ONLY the "preferred" jacking locations. All four wheels off the ground. Lots of room under the car to work (oil changes, etc.) Very secure.

All that's needed are two rolling hydraulic floor jacks, four jack stands, two cross beam adapters and a few planks.

In the photos below, the rolling hydraulic jack used at the front of the car is an AC Hydraulic DK13HLQ low-profile, long-reach jack. It fits just right, reaches the larger front cross member of the car and still sticks out far enough to allow full pumping of lever. Other hydraulic floor jacks may work here, you'll have to experiment.

Two low-profile, long-reach jacks favored by forum members are the AC DK13HLQ and the Omega 29023 - detailed comparison here:
http://forums.corvetteforum.com/show....php?t=1814892

Jack stands used in the photos below are Blackhawk Automotive forklift stands, details below in post #4.

The cross beam adapters - you'll need two. Only $29.99 each from NorthernTool.com. As shown in photos, the adapter used at the rear of the car can be left stock. The one used at the front of the car must be altered slightly.... just pull off the side extensions and add rubber pads on top of the main center piece at each end.

Note: in order to use the above described cross beam adapter in an AC brand jack, you will need to grind the 1.15" main pin of the adapter down a bit since the hole in AC jacks is only 1.00" (unlike most American jacks which have a 1.130" hole).

Directions:
1. -Get front wheels 2" - 3" above the ground by driving up on some planks

2. -Place jack with "altered" cross beam adapter under front main cross member of car (underneath the PREFERRED jacking locations)... make sure the rubber pads on the adapter touch only the preferred jacking locations... nothing will touch center of cross member

3. - Place two jack stands under the cross beam adapter, directly under the preferred jacking locations, lower weight of car onto stands, leave jack in place for added safety

4. Repeat steps 2 and 3 for rear of car, except use "stock" cross beam adapter

Car is now off the ground and fully supported by ONLY the "preferred" jacking locations.





Last edited by Vet; 12-29-2007 at 12:13 PM.
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Old 02-06-2006, 01:45 AM   #2
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I like it... I also decided that I only wanted to lift on the "preferred" locations, but then realized that I would have a rough time getting a jackstand where the hydraulic jack is currently lifting. Not to mention how to get a plate to distribute the load to stay on top of a jackstand... Your system seems to have hit the best of all worlds!
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Old 02-06-2006, 01:51 AM   #3
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Looks like a good system...like the use of the steel lifting crossmembers...and the price for the crossmembers is very reasonable.

Can one end be lifted at a time to avoid the need for two pump jacks...or do I risk the car falling off on the other end??
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Old 02-06-2006, 02:04 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by C-INRED
...Can one end be lifted at a time to avoid the need for two pump jacks...or do I risk the car falling off on the other end??
I suppose if you have jack stands that fit the bottom of the cross beam adapter really well, and if the car is on a dead level stable surface, I'd think you probably COULD get way with using just one jack. However, I will not officially recommend you do that.

At one point, after I had lifted the front of the car and put the jack stands in place, I DID allow the jack to lower quite a bit to the point where it was almost not touching the cross beam adapter any longer... and everything seemed totally solid... I could have removed the jack... but personally, I like the extra safety. You may wish to experiment, but be careful. Again, car should be on a solid level surface, and your jack stands should hold the cross beam adapter very well.

I'd recommend using GOOD jack stands in any case. Below are some detailed shots of the jackstands I use:


Last edited by Vet; 03-09-2007 at 11:13 AM.
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Old 02-06-2006, 02:22 AM   #5
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Wow... I really want to adopt this method.
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Old 02-06-2006, 09:55 AM   #6
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The method is slick and secure but, for owners of low profile jacks that are not as low as the AC jack (eg: Craftsman 2 ton aluminum), it appears that by the time you drive the car up on enough wood ramps to enable the jack and cross beam adapter to fit under the jacking points, you're already as high as you need to be to work under the car for oil change, CAGS, or exhaust.

Your method would appear ideal for tire rotation and caliper work, however.

Last edited by ProfMoriarty; 02-06-2006 at 10:02 AM.
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Old 02-06-2006, 10:05 AM   #7
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Do you chock the wheels of the jacks? It looks like the car could move while lifted by rolling on the jack wheels.
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Old 02-06-2006, 10:30 AM   #8
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Wow that's a bunch of work... nice, but I simply get a piece of 2x4 so I span 2-ribs of the cross-member front and back and jack away. At the track in a pinch I've put the jacking pad directly on the cross-member and guess what the car didn't bend in 1/2
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Old 02-06-2006, 10:52 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cobra4B
Wow that's a bunch of work... nice, but I simply get a piece of 2x4 so I span 2-ribs of the cross-member front and back and jack away. At the track in a pinch I've put the jacking pad directly on the cross-member and guess what the car didn't bend in 1/2
A 2"X4" on its side will flex way more than you think. If you are jacking from the center using only a 2"X4" as a "cross beam support", most or almost all of the pressure will still be at the center of the cross member and very little if any support at the sides.

I'm glad your car did not bend in half , but seriously, I'd be concerned about the potential of damaging a cross member if jacking from the center. Others have jacked from the center and I have yet to hear of a story about a cracked cross member, but why take a chance? Think about what it would take to replace a cross member.

My main goal here was to figure out a way to jack and support the car using the GM specificed "preferred" lifting locations only. Can't go wrong doing that. If GM felt it was safe to jack from the center of the cross members, I'm sure they would have specificed that.

One last note: my wife's `03 Mustang... the service manual says to NOT jack the rear axle from the center. On a Mustang forum, a few guys were saying, "I jack from the center of the axle all the time, it's fine, Ford is being over cautious". I said "bullsh*t". Not too long after there were numerous posts from guys having axle housing problems, leaks, etc. Point is, if you do not want to have any trouble, FOLLOW the manufacturer's recommendations ONLY.

Having said all this, who knows, maybe we COULD jack from the center of the C6's cross members from now until eternity and they'd never crack. Possible. But we're not the engineers who designed and built the car, I think I'd stick to what GM has to say about it.
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Old 02-06-2006, 11:00 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vet
If you are jacking from the center using only a 2"X4" as a "cross beam support", most or almost all of the pressure will still be at the center of the cross member and very little if any support at the sides.
My '01 service manuals specifically says jacking from the center is fine so long as you span more than 1 rib of the crossmember. I put my jack stands at the end of each cross member in a similar location to yours.
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Old 02-06-2006, 11:02 AM   #11
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Added to the C6 and C6 Z06 FAQs thanks!!!
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Old 02-06-2006, 11:23 AM   #12
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Vet, there really is no argument against the fact that the preferred jacking locations are, well...preferred!

So, while I do not envision myself utilizing your technique as posted, I did go ahead and purchase a beam adapter.

Thanks for a valuable post.
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Old 02-06-2006, 11:27 AM   #13
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Very nice. I can build one of those cross beams specifically for the Corvette...short length of 4" channel, 3" length of round bar stock, and a 3" X 3" piece of 1/2" plate for a bearing surface. QED

I may have to get me one of those high dollar jacks too. I see why they work now; the chassis of the jack is about 3.5-4 feet long.
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Old 02-06-2006, 11:28 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dale_K
Do you chock the wheels of the jacks? It looks like the car could move while lifted by rolling on the jack wheels.
Good point. I did think of that.

Indeed this jacking procedure should be done on a near level surface. I would certainly NOT recommend attempting it on any kind of a noticeable grade.

Here's why the car will not move though if jacking on a very slight grade... Once you lift the front of the car and then lower it onto the jack stands, the weight of the car against the stands holds the car from moving... holds quite well actually. This is of course assuming you have jack stands that fit the cross beam adapter well so the cross member cannot slide off the stands. This also assumes that you have good sure-footed jack stands and that they are on a stable surface.

This is also why I like to leave the jacks in place in addition to the stands. If anything were to ever move, tilt, slide, etc, having those jacks there will save the day.

One part I left out... the rear wheels of the car should technically be chocked when lifting the front of the car to prevent the car from potentially moving PRIOR to the point you lower the front of the car onto the jack stands.

You could actually chock the hydraulic jack wheels too for extra security, that's not a bad idea. You'd need some specific sized rubber "mini-chocks" though .

Another idea I had if movement was a problem was to simply connect a heavy-duty racheting tie-down strap to the front jack (or even the car itself) and then to the garage wall... that would keep the car from rolling out of the garage... but in the case of my (and most) garage floors (which are near level), this is not necessary.

There are a lot of extra safety details I could have included in my initial post, but in the name of keeping the post from being 18 pages long, I did not include. I would hope that anyone here who works on their own car already knows how to be safe when doing such.

The example / pics I provided above... I took those pics VERY quickly, it was already getting dark, started to drizzle, etc... I banged it out FAST. I did not do it in the most thorough manner possible. But at least the presentation shows and explains the idea well enough for the experienced weekend mechanic to be able to figure out how they can potentially apply it in their own way.

As well (no one has commented on this yet) I lifted the car on an asphalt surface... that alone is not wise, at least not without some 1/4" diamond plate underneath the jacks and stands. I never jack on my asphalt driveway, only on my concrete garage floor. But I jacked in the driveway here ONLY for the sake of having some extra room and extra daylight to take photos.

So, to blanket the issue, perhaps I should add: "Kids, don't try this at home without the supervision of a certified shop safety instructor".
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Old 02-06-2006, 11:48 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ProfMoriarty
The method is slick and secure but, for owners of low profile jacks that are not as low as the AC jack, it appears that by the time you drive the car up on enough wood ramps to enable the jack and cross beam adapter to fit under the jacking points, you're already as high as you need to be to work under the car for oil change, CAGS, or exhaust. Your method would appear ideal for tire rotation and caliper work, however.
That is true. But even driving the front wheels up on 3" of lumber (as I did in the photos), there was a lot of clearance for the AC jack. I think even a mere 1.5" of lumber might have worked. With this in mind, and ALSO considering that the front air dam on the car is flexible, it is possible that with say just 4.5" of lumber under the front wheels (three 2"X10" or whatever), many other jacks may fit. Of course shorter reach jacks may be more of a pain to pump since their levers will be farther under the car, but still might work fine. I wish I had the time and jack assortment to test various jacks in this scenario, but I don't.

You could probably figure out what jacks will work well by doing some simple measurements. Measure the MAX height of your jack. Then measure the clearance of the air dam to the ground. Then figure that the air dam flexes which will give you another inch or so of clearance. The difference between the max height of your jack and the air dam ground clearance plus flex clearance is how high you'd need to get the front wheels off the ground.

Or... you may just want to buy an AC low-profile, long-reach jack. $417 shipped from one vendor... pricey yes, but it's a beautiful tool that you will have forever. Many other more typical good quality jacks are close to $300 anyway, so when you think about it, this AC jack is only about $100 more. Think if it as adding a "low-profile, long-reach" option to a typical jack for just $117. Most of us probably added $1,500 for 2LT or $4,800 for 3LT, so what's an extra $117 for "low-profile, long reach"?
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Old 02-06-2006, 11:59 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cobra4B
My '01 service manuals specifically says jacking from the center is fine so long as you span more than 1 rib of the crossmember. I put my jack stands at the end of each cross member in a similar location to yours.
Not sure exactly how similar the `01 is to the `05/`06 in terms of cross members, jacking, etc.

Also, I'll admit, I do not even yet own a C6 service manual... I'm waiting for the `06 version to be released. All I've seen is a C6 jacking diagram which has been posted here at the forum and around the internet which appears to be "official". I have actually asked here quite a few times whether or not that diagram came directly from the GM service manual or not and have never gotten a straight answer. But, it seems that most are in agreement that the "preferred" jacking locations I have specificed are indeed the correct GM recommended "preferred" locations.

As for other accepted jacking locations, I'm not sure personally. Indeed jacking from the center of the front MAIN cross member (not the smaller one) might be just fine. Maybe someone can chime in here and post the EXACT C6 jacking diagram from the GM service manual, in its entirety without edits. Again, I believe the diagram that has floated around here in the past IS the correct one, but... never hurts to double-confirm things. I can't wait to get my manual... wish they'd hurry up with that!
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Old 02-06-2006, 12:04 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ProfMoriarty
Vet, there really is no argument against the fact that the preferred jacking locations are, well...preferred! So, while I do not envision myself utilizing your technique as posted, I did go ahead and purchase a beam adapter. Thanks for a valuable post.
Thanks! For just $29.99 (plus shipping), that cross beam adapter is a cool tool to have in the shop regardless. It's one of those things that is almost too cheap NOT to own, at least if you do a lot of work on cars.
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Old 02-06-2006, 12:07 PM   #18
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Thanks.
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Old 02-06-2006, 12:09 PM   #19
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Thanks for the good info!
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Old 02-06-2006, 12:10 PM   #20
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I use the 2 X6 method with no problems
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