High jack is a device for cargo lifting. It is very efficient and popular among drivers, because it is easy and convenient to use. High jack is placed under cargo. That allows to lift it without additional tools, such as chains, ropes etc. This article deals with one type of high jacks, which is called “high lift jack”. It is mostly used by off-roadster drivers.
• What is high lift jack?
• How did the first high lift jack appeared?
• Use of high lift jacks
• Pros and cons of high lift jack
What is high lift jack?
High lift jack has a simple construction. It consists of perforated rod, the length of which depends on model, power lift moving along the rod, handle, which controls power lift movement and slipper head. Lower end of rod is right-angled for better cargo lifting. The lifting platform of high lift jack is very low (sometimes 10 cm above floor).
It operates on a principle of clickwork with rod. When you need to lift a cargo, the body frame, on which weight support and hoist arm are fixed, moves along perforated rod. The device is protected with metal covering to avoid maculation.
Speaking of dirt, the device can easily be cleaned of mud. Just wash it with water. Some drivers don’t believe that and grease it with lube oil. But it is better not to do it, because dust and mud sticks to oiled surface, which complicate its work.
How the first high lift jack appeared?
The history of high lift jack goes back in 20-th century, when Philip John Harrah worked on new tools in his workshop. He was a fan of Thomas Edison since was a child. Different jobs as wash machine salesman and school teacher didn’t bring satisfaction to Harrah.
In 1895 an intended inventor opens his own workshop in small town of Bloomfield, Indiana. Young Philip was successful and his business prospered. Many tools produced in his workshop are still in use now.
His company also specialized in devices for self-propelled carriages that just appeared at that time. The Hi-Lift's predecessor was invented in 1905 and sold as the Automatic Combination Tool. But it was commonly known as Shepherd’s Tool.
This funny name was quite reasonable, because at that time shepherds carried wooden hedges. That’s why it was very convenient for them to use high lift jacks.
Time passed and construction as well as name of high jack changed. Handles of first high jacks were wooden and holed rod was redented. Though, the construction stayed unchanged, despite of changed materials. The name has also evolved. The “Shepherd’s tool” got the name Hi Lift. Then “high jack” was added to it.
Use of high lift jacks
As was mentioned above, the high lift jacks are used for lifting cargos on certain height (up to 1.5m). Due to its construction, this type of high jack is used in building and automobile field, and also in any other sphere during repair, installation and dismantling works etc. But the main users of high jacks are drivers, especially the ones driving off-roadsters.
High lift jack is capable to get out any car from any mud. Just put plastic support under slipper head and it won’t sink in a mud. If you have no such support, you can use any plank board, though, it will affect the convenience of lifting. Classic high lift jack is used for cars with metallic bumper or “body on frame” designed cars. There is a tool for cars with plastic bumper called Lift Mate, due to which the high jack to hook the car wheel disc. The Lift Mate looks like two hooks connected by chain and the support to avoid jack collision with auto body.
High lift jack can also be used as hoisting engine. But to use it like that, you’ll need additional tools: tree protector, clevis and lug (chain lock-up device).
Though, the high lifting jack is used for lifting only. To get the car out of mud with it, you’ll have to put sand ladders under wheels etc. It is no good for wheel replacement, because the car lifted with high jack is unstable.
Pros and cons of high lift jack
As any other tool, high jack has its pros and cons. Let’s observe its pros first:
It has simple construction and easy to use. High lift jack is very simple. Despite of light weight of its construction, it can cope with large and heavy cargos, which sometimes makes it irreplaceable.
High power and efficiency: car can be lifted quite high with minimum effort.
Magnifical lifting range. High lifting jack can rescue a deeply stuck car in any situation. Due to its construction, it will lift vehicle on necessary height.
But there are also several cons:
Big size. The high jack must lift a car on certain height. So, its rod sometimes is several meters long. That’s why, only the owners of roadsters or large cars can afford it.
You’ll have to carry support with you. High jack slipper head sinks under heavy weight. That’s why you’ll need plastic supporter or wide and tough boards to avoid it.
It is not suitable for any situation. As was mentioned above, high jack is needed for lifting car from mud. That’s why such operation as wheel replacement cannot be performed with its help.
Additional safety rules. The car lifted with high lifting jack is unstable, that’ why it is strongly forbidden to lie down under it. Often cars fall from jack and there is high jack falling zone, which is also dangerous. When high jack falls, its handle spins wildly. Don’t try to stop it! There were many cases with broken limbs and knocked out teeth.