Jacking up the car to work underneath

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Wrightpayne
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Whats the issue with 4 stands? Is that a Caterham specific thing? 

DJ.
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I do use four axle stands if bleeding the brakes, changing pads etc. If I'm going under the car, I'm happier to have some blocks of wood I have made under the wheels, it seems much more stable.
Geoff Brown
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Four axle stands are OK as long as they are on a level firm surface. Chock the appropriate wheel. I use a square of four inch sq timber cut diagonally.

As stated earlier jack up the rear first using the A frame de Dion join & place stands under the rear bar just outboard of the two rear exhaust mounting plates.

The front can be difficult as some cars have too much clutter to utilise the cruciform which personally I would not advocate without a really extensive load spreader. Otherwise the towing eye is fine. Although an offset lift the chassis should not twist much if at all as it is supported at the rear corners.

Progress upwards one stand hole at a time back & front but do not over extend the number of holes as the car will become unstable. You will know how far you can go  from personal experience!

When lowering the car go down one stand hole at a time then front first on the ground. Don't forget the chock(s)

Try jacking up a 100 ton aircraft & then sitting underneath it while the main undercarriage cycles Yikes

 

Wrightpayne
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On the front, jacking on the towing eye I can never get the axle stand in the right place due to the wheel of the jack. All with bogo standard machine mart tools. I've thought about making a lifting plate with a routered hole for the jack and raised glued and screwed timber to fit the cruciform!

I saw a program where they jacked up a big plane - all the people at the various jack points had to be synchronised / within a tolerance to the others to avoid twisting the air frame (lots of jeopardy build up!!)

Ian

 

Tazio
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Caterhamkid, also it's worth mentioning, I have a piece of old tyre tread which i always put between the head of the jack and any point i use on the chassis or the A frame to de-dion point. Similarly I protect the heads of the axle stands, with some 3 mm thick rubber this prevents damage to the powder coating.

Rivets, I think I'm right in saying, the rivets that hold the floor in, are steel.

Caterham Kid
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Whats the issue with 4 stands? Is that a Caterham specific thing? 

On the box the axle stands came in and in the instructions it states never use more than a single pair of axle stands. 

 

Caterham Kid
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It turned out to be less of an issue than feared. I went and got a set of car ramps and I put the rear wheels on those. That was more than enough to get access to the rivets so I didn't need to jack up the front at all.

I only had 2 issues. Firstly since the beginning of the lockdown my garage had become a bit of a dumping ground so I had to spend a few hours clearing up before I could get access to the axle stands and my trolley jack!

Secondly, I can't remember how I jacked up the rear before but there was no way the trolley jack was going under the de Dion joint so I had to jack up a rear corner, put an axle stand under that to give me enough space to get the trolley jack under the the de Dion joint. I could then jack up enough to place the ramps under. There was no way, especially on my own, that I would have been able to drive up on to them!

Anyway, there were 4 rivets that needed re-doing and that only took 5 minutes!

 

brianjhall31
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Caterham Kid.  There is a good article on this website which covers jacking the car in detail.  Just go onto the home page and scroll down to "Popular Guides" and "Getting to know your Seven".  Here is the link:

https://www.lotus7.club/sites/default/files/images/Docs/GTKY7-1.pdf

As many of the others have said the critical part of raising the car onto axle stands is to progress gradually in height i.e. 1 hole or click on the vertical adjuster (depending on axle stand model), working from the back (starting point) to the front until the minium height is reached for you to work under the car.  I use a Machine Mart Low Entry Jack (same as in the Guide) which is necessary to go under the A Frame centre mounting at the rear.  What is very important to bear in mind is that the Jack, in the motion of lifting the car has to be able to move on its wheels towards to fixed point (the chocked grounded wheels or axle stands) of the pivot (as the arm of the jack raises vertically it moves thru an arc away from the fixed point so its "chassis" has to move towards the pivot point to compensate) Therefore the surface that the jack is sitting on needs to be smooth enough to allow it to roll and not on any slope to have gravity affecting its movement.

Once raised using this progressive method and 4 axle stands as per the guide I have found the car to be very stable, however I still place 2 old tyres which are a bit wider then me under the car before I venture there!

 

Brian J Hall

MADMALC
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A job well and safely done CK.

'Whats the issue with 4 stands? Is that a Caterham specific thing?'   No. Anything with three legs is basically unstable so extra care and thought needs to be taken in all circumstances. That includes sitting on a three legged stool !!!!!!!

I know, I know, I don't mind feeding the comedians on here.!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

R.I.P. SLR No.27.

Wrightpayne
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I guess even professionals have a bad day!!