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Discussion Starter #1
This is a horribly embarrassing post. I knowingly bought HF 6 ton jack stands for the Metris, even though the hidden support pawls scare the poop out of me. So much so, in fact, that I actually use my (Costco Arcan) floor jack as a safety for the jack stands, along with my circa 1975 Sears jack stands with the cute little rod you shove in the hole to keep the whole d#@n ride in the air.

Anyway, my fretting is over as these t*rds have been recalled -- because of the shiite pawl system. Thank heaven the government was smarter than me this time.
 

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Harbor freight is what you use when you want to buy a big-ass breaker bar and socket to keep in your car to make changing a tire in the rain that will be inevitably falling in what will always be a cellphone dead spot that you are required by law to be in when you have a flat tire. I might even use them to buy a hydraulic jack to keep in the van for the same purpose- although the one Mercedes includes is better than most manufacturer included garbage tools.

You do not use harbor freight to buy any tools that 1) have any mechanical feature, 2) any electrical feature, 3) you do not have a spare for (example- if that breaker bar blows out you still have the MB included tire iron), 4) you depend on for completion of the project (ex. You need it to put your car back together to go out and buy a replacement tool), 5) you intend to use it more than once, or (most importantly) 6) you depend on for safety of life and limb.

Sometimes harbor freight stuff can be as good as a modern Sears-bought craftsman tool (I.e. not great but functional), sometimes it can be outright crappy, and more often it’s just useful as a paperweight. Harbor freight tools are cheap, low priced, and usually over-priced, too.

If you intend to work on your car, you don’t need Matco, MAC, or Snap-On, but I would at least go with a name brand- even Husky or Kobalt. If you really want a cheap tool, though, may I suggest you go for Russian-made rather than cheap unbranded Chinese?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I generally agree GML, but I saw the jack stands as a big heavy who-can-screw-up-steel proposition. I did use the HF center cut shears when I installed the CRL windows, slavishly avoiding a jig saw as much as possible to avoid rust shards (saws are fine with dust protection). I think HF is OK for light or occasional use, unless you are putting your head under a 6700# GVW van (because even a lightly or occasionally smushed head is bad, or so I am told).

The old swap meet tools I have from when I was a poor Datsun 510 autocrosser (somehow imagining I might become Paul Newman I suppose) are all Japanese -- and I still use them. They are branded "Aigo" and are basically Craftsman knockoffs, but they are made from very solid CrV steel, have a nice heft in your hand.

I agree those "big-ass breaker bars" are handy in the rain with no cell phone coverage -- for lots of tasks you might not expect!
 

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Discussion Starter #4

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Discussion Starter #6
Thank you! For me, the pin and eye mech (or whatever it is properly called) lacks enough height adjustability. The built-in flat round rubber jack pad is a big plus, but aftermarket jack stand pads are pretty cheap. These look a lot like the old Sears jack stands I mentioned above, although those welded rocket ship legs give the impression of more sturdiness than the bent steel of the Sears, or even the Torins in the Amazon link above [no it is not in any way monetized by me so shut up GML ;) ] OTOH, I've seen folded cardboard doing some amazing stuff -- maybe better than trusting a welded joint, especially if impact is a possibility? Also, is a pin through a hole in a cylindrical shaft better mechanically than the tooth and key plus angled pin and eye in the Torin, or vice-versa? Seems like the pin and hole design could not allow slippage due to lateral force (unless applied to the pin), whereas the Torin/HF style could slip if it took a lateral hit.

Any engineers out there who can explain the pros and cons of jack stand design? No smart alecks telling me to use cinder blocks. And I would like to spend less than $100 USD for two such devices, used generally at 5,000 and 15,000 mile intervals!
 

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There are a couple okay Chinese pin-type stands sold under different brand names. You might like this one, the Sunex 1210:

17828


It's not obvious from the photo, but these are pretty big. They weigh about 30 lbs. each. Cost is about $130 per pair.

I have the tall version:

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These weigh nearly 60 lbs. each and extend to almost 4' high. I use them as safety stands under a lift.

If you Google "22 ton jack stand" you'll find this design sold by many brands:

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It's about as strong and simple as a stand can get. Adjustability is coarse, though (3").

If you want to go to town, check out Gray Manufacturing. Their customers are mainly fleet maintenance and industry. Their products are made in the USA and not cheap.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Wow, thanks Gottlieb! I guess the moral of the story is that if I want safe I need the pin and eye design.

These look great -- the pin/hole spacing is closer together. I like the Sunex 1310 10-ton Medium, but $200 seems really steep. Interestingly, the Sunex 1006A at $90 appear to have the same folded steel base, "ductile iron support column with ratchet teeth" single lock mech as the Big Red Torin stands, without the double lock pin. I guess Sunex is a tool truck level professional-grade product?

So for an extra hundred bucks I'll have a safer head. Good trade. Thanks again!
 

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These look great -- the pin/hole spacing is closer together. I like the Sunex 1310 10-ton Medium, but $200 seems really steep.
Just make sure they're not too tall for what you're doing. Here are the Mediums near their lowest position:

17830


Interestingly, the Sunex 1006A at $90 appear to have the same folded steel base, "ductile iron support column with ratchet teeth" single lock mech as the Big Red Torin stands, without the double lock pin.
The 1006A has the same ratchet-handle design that you're trying to avoid.

It's probably the same product sold under a dozen brands.

I guess Sunex is a tool truck level professional-grade product?
I'd call them a seller of generally decent, mostly imported tools.
 

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I wonder how many people were crushed before recall was issued? Definitely going to be returning mine. Love my HF 3 ton jack though!
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Just make sure they're not too tall for what you're doing. Here are the Mediums near their lowest position:

View attachment 17830

The 1006A has the same ratchet-handle design that you're trying to avoid.

It's probably the same product sold under a dozen brands.


I'd call them a seller of generally decent, mostly imported tools.
Whoa they're huge! You could double those for train trestles, at least in one of those hokey pre-Japanese techno/industrial boom Godzilla flicks. I guess I'll have to resort to actually measuring the Metris lift points and the lift on my floor jack.

Thank you VERY much!!!
 

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Some newspaper man asked an astronaut, I think it was Gus Grissom, how he felt going up in the space craft. He replied, perhaps having heard the question too many times, “how would you feel going up into space depending upon thousands of systems for your very life, knowing that each one was manufactured by the lowest bidder?”

There are thousands of Chinese “brands” that are created to sell cheap stuff, and they disappear quickly because they very quickly develop a reputation for selling garbage. The factory is still open; they just come up with another brand and sell it under a different label. With some tools, it’s ok to risk buying stuff from one of these manufacturers. With something that is safety critical, I would choose a brand that is established and has a “good name” (that’s a legal term meaning a reputation worth protecting).

You can always go to Home Depot and buy a couple of buckets and cement if you really don’t want to pay for a reputable brand.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
No GML, I'm convinced it's worth it, just a little sticker shock, especially compared to a seemingly much more complex floor jack.
 

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Discussion Starter #14

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Discussion Starter #16
Where I buying a jackstand it would be one with a cotter pin, not that ratchet mechanism.
That's what I was thinking too by way of safety, then I read that the concerning point of failure is not the ratcheting teeth, but poor welding on the folded sheet metal base. These US Jack stands have a continuous security rail (my words) welded around the base to prevent it from reverse mushrooming under load.
 
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