Lotus Elan

Car lift for Elan

PostPost by: miked » Sun Apr 16, 2006 3:42 pm

I am interested in some views on the above. I am thinking of treating myself to a car lift for the S4. Have had a look at various sites but keep coming back to the 4 leg mechanical lift on the Frost site (UK).

It can be driven onto. It is positive and locks mechanically on four separate leg jacks. It has jacking plates that can be moved around allowing the raised car to be jacked and put on axle stands etc. Some of the hydraulic ones look hard to drive over with a low Elan. The two post hydrauilc one look a bit iffy for placing the pads on the style of chassis that an Elan has.

see link. this is the site that make the lift for Frost.

http://www.hamercarlift.com/The-Hamer-in-action

The seat is amusing but looks good.

Anybody got one of these units.

Mike
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PostPost by: chicagojeff » Sun Apr 16, 2006 5:20 pm

i am starting to look at lifts (in the US) to put into my new garage. I dont know anything about the Hamer, but for not much more money you can get a hydraulic lift. When I get closer to details I will post. Jeff
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PostPost by: M100 » Sun Apr 16, 2006 7:10 pm

Can't comment from experience on the one you've linked to but I just wonder how much you are really gaining in terms of access when it not a "free wheel lift"

If I had the space and height. I'd go for a proper two post lift. They can be picked up relatively cheaply if you ask around the garage trade. The only problem is they need *lots* of height and sometimes three phase power.

I've got one of these, It can be used in the garage or easily wheeled out onto the drive if the weather is good.

Image

Machine Mart seem to have stopped selling them but they were about GBP1350 for the compressor version and GBP1525 for the electric version like I have. The pump lifts the hydralic ram and there is an auto-engaging stay that prevents if collapsing if the hydraulics let go. I managed to pick mine up for about GBP650, never used!

There was a similar one on ebay only last week. It went for GBP910.

http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.dll? ... 8052806523

Ground clearance is designed for normal saloons and is marginal for anything really low. Add a couple of scaffold planks to drive over and it easily copes with the Elan/Elise/M100.

http://www.globalpowertooling.com/vehicle_lifts.htm has them for GBP1400/GBP1640
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PostPost by: fatboyoz » Mon Apr 17, 2006 7:18 am

I have a commercial, 4 post, hydraulic hoist in my garage. It allows me to lift the car up and away after use and is ideal for under body access. It lifts high enough for my wife to park her VW Golf underneath. Because the car sits on ramps, my Elan (68 S4) will sit there for lengthy periods at the normal ride height without suspension problems.
The commercial lifts are quite expensive. Less substantial, built for car storage only, lifts can be purchased at quite reasonable cost. Perhaps an internet search might turn up something that you can compare with the item you are looking at.
BTW, do you use 4 people to operate the hoist or do you run from corner to corner jacking it a little at a time.

Colin.
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PostPost by: fatboyoz » Mon Apr 17, 2006 7:44 am

Look at - Ebay.co.uk garage,equipment & tools > lifting tools. Or if you can make it work the following page. http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/Four-Post-3-Ton-R ... dZViewItem

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PostPost by: gav » Mon Apr 17, 2006 8:53 am

Hi
I too have an electro hydraulic 4 post lift. It isn't wheels free which I suspect is just as well because the wheels are relatively close to the inner edge of the ramps. I think that the wheels free beams may get in the way.
It gives very good access to the underside.
The smaller flat pack type ramps I think get in the way of some tasks.
I have been looking out for a jacking beam to lift one end independantly and I subscribe to the appropriate sized piece of wood and/or axle stands theory to prop an end or corner as needed.
Mine was originally a 3 phase unit. I changed the motor to single phase but beware - on electro hydraulics, the conversion also necessitated the change of the oil pump to match the motor speed.
I paid £300 for the entire lift (with as new cables - check these carefully) as they are no longer popular. The motor was a further £240 and the pump around £50. I also paid a fitting expert £50 to check the installation after I assembled it.
Before anything else however - do check that you have sufficient headroom - obvious I know but we all fall for these things every now and again.
Good luck
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PostPost by: purplepete » Mon Apr 17, 2006 9:42 am

The Machine Mart lifts are still available-its just that they change their product codes every year,so you can never find anything in the catalogue!!if youre going to go down that route,its worth getting yourself on their mailing list,as every 4 months they hold a "vat free day"or more precisely,they give a one day discount of 17.5%,so for big purchases it worth waiting!
hamer looks very pretty,but not too sure i'd want to actually be under one!
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PostPost by: miked » Mon Apr 17, 2006 12:20 pm

Thanks for info. Food for thought.

Colin, I guess you do have to run corner to corner to jack it.

Re: the Machine Mart one. Where do you postion the 4 pads to get best security and strength of lift. I realise that everything in life is a compromise, but do you not restrict access to the centre line of the car for say, diff' or exhaust work.

Am I right in thinking that the Elan is funny little creature to jack due to its lack of good jacking points.

Re: being underneath the Hamer one! On the basis of 4 point of failure v 2 or 1 (I dont know enough about the machine mart one), is the Hamer not safer?? I am not being funny, but it looks sturdy. I had seen the machine mart style but it kind of frightened me. I understand it has a mechanical rachet affair. Is this 1 off of 2 off.


Mike
Last edited by miked on Tue Apr 18, 2006 8:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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PostPost by: Matt7c » Mon Apr 17, 2006 2:25 pm

The Hamer lift looks like it has 4 hi-lift (or farmers) jacks on each corner. I know from my off-roading days that such jacks need treeting with respect, and must be left in the correct position when you've reached the right level. I have seen a few broken limbs (and heard of many more) resulting from their missuse: if you don't leave the jacking arm fully up (I think) it is possible for the jack to colapse, waving the jacking arm up and down at speed while doing so :shock:

Hopefully, Hamer have this covered...
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PostPost by: sgbooth » Mon Apr 17, 2006 5:06 pm

Quote:

"I have seen a few broken limbs (and heard of many more) resulting from their missuse: if you don't leave the jacking arm fully up (I think) it is possible for the jack to colapse, waving the jacking arm up and down at speed while doing so"

.....Unsure as to whether this is the lift or the operator's arm doing the waving!!!

Quote:

"Hopefully, Hamer have this covered..."

..... It will for sure be in the small print, somewhere.

Regards.
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PostPost by: M100 » Tue Apr 18, 2006 3:23 pm

miked wrote:Re: the Machine Mart one. Where do you postion the 4 pads to get best security and strength of lift. I realise that everything in life is a compromise, but do you not restrict access to the centre line of the car for say, diff' or exhaust work.

I had seen the machine mart style but it kind of frightened me. I understand it has a mechanical ratchet affeir. Is this 1 off of 2 off.


Access is still quite good on the Machine Mart one. The only time I find it a problem is on the 90's Elan the exhaust and brake lines are slightly difficult to reach. The pads go on the sills. If you are a bit paranoid even if the sills punched through the car would only fall about 50mm onto the chassis which lines up pretty good with the lift structure.

Ignoring main structural failure (and it is very heavily built which is a bit of a bugger if you want to move it to another location!) the Machine Mart one would need simultaneous catastrophic failure of both the hydraulics and the rachet prop for the lift to collapse. In terms of inherent safety devices they are at the same level as a full 2 or 4 post garage lift (according to my mate at the HSE)
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