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Getting ready to move to NC. This time I plan to put a lift in the garage because I am getting too fat/lazy/old to be crawling on the concrete to get under a car.

Any members have an opinion of best type? Would eb great to combine it with the ability to lift the car out of the way and park another underneath.
 

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A co-worker of mine had a Rotary Lift at his house. While he was shopping for one he checked various dealers and service centers to see what they used. Apparently, Rotary was rather popular and well received. As I recall, he got a two post because it he felt it was the most versatile of the bunch.

So I would suggest doing what he did, check with dealers and service centers to see what they use and how they like it.
 

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And....I am looking for a lift also, with the exact same requirements that alfafan61 outlined.

2 post vs 4 post. Pros and cons? 4 post is inherently stable and I would think that no special requirements would be needed for the floor?
 

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One thing to keep in mind is that most of these lifts require a 10-foot ceiling height in order to allow a car to be parked underneath. Most residential garages have 8-foot ceilings, and don't forget that the garage door and tracks will further reduce your clearance. Even if you are building a garage from scratch you need to account for all of this, but you can have different "high lift" tracks put in for the door to give more room.

I too am finally considering a lift since I now have a separate garage behind the house with a 14-foot ceiling (it was originally built to house an RV by the original owners). Each type has its pros and cons. For instance, a 4 post takes more space, and if it is the kind with drive on ramps you have to put the car on jackstands on the ramps to work on brakes. A two post with the moveable arms allows you to remove the wheels without this extra step. Ask yourself what kind of work you plan to do and that will help you decide.

Personally, I am leaning toward the four post, since I too want to park a car underneath, and I would rather have the car above sitting firmly on ramps on all four wheels instead of supported by the rocker panels with the wheels hanging in the air.

Arno Leskinen
AROC-USA National Concours Chair
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they make 2 and 4 post with the arm design..but they only make ramp style in 4 post

personaly i prefer the 2 post arm design as it blocks only the doors of the car..for body work, painting, welding fabrication ect and takes up the least amount of space ..the bigest problem with the ramp setup is there not the friendlyest if your working on suspension stuff

keep in mind your ceiling height 10-12 foot should be considered minimum for a lift...should you have any concerns about the 2 post you can ancor it to the ceiling as well to gain stability and strength
 

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Two Post For Sure

You will need a 11 foot ceiling, but I park cars under two post. However, I must caution anyone with an Alfa up on any lift that they the LEAK -- two post or four post. You will have to cover the car underneath. Of course no one has a new one any more (last one was a 95) and only really new ones might not leak. Essentially, if an Alfa is not leaking oil, then it must be OUT of oil. Having given that snide comment I would say that the two post is best if you expect to use the left to work on the car. It raises the car by its jack points so all parts are open -- engine, trans, rear end, wheels, brakes, etc. Oh yes, if there is work being done on brakes and then a car parked underneath remember that brake fluid EATS car finishes. Final comment is that with the present slow down of the economy and the great number of service stations going out of business that a used lift ought to be available for about a third of a new price. Jay
 

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I`m jealous-I`d love to have a hoist again-it just makes things so much easier and if you own anything later than late `80`s they require use of a hoist for even the most mundane of tasks in most situations. When I owned my Euro workshop (also did late model Japanese imports) it was the single most significant productivity improver when each workstation got a hoist. I`d go for a 2 poster as tons more versatile with the jobs you are able to perform and they are just as stable as long as the posts are dyna bolted to the floor and the arms are placed in the correct contact points under the car. At lockup we always needed to place a car underneath one on the hoist so parking underneath not an issue, (apart from oil leaks-Jags, Subarus ,Hondas and Range Rovers worst). The screw type lifts are better than the wire fed units at least for commercial use as failure/maintenance rates higher, particularly as the machine got older with wire rope lifts. Essentially the screw units were safer too so the servicemen used to tell me. Beware in these days of over regulation in that you may be up for a annual sevice requirement and annual certification cost as we are in NZ-may have to be done by certified service techs with commercial type costs.

Richard J

`65 Giulia Ti, `69 GT Junior, `74 GTV 2000, `76 Alfetta GTV, `77 Alfetta GTV, `84 GTV6
 

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One warning about a 2 post lift, you need a concrete floor thick enough to securely mount it. I want to say 10", but my memory could be faulty. Plus the cost of assembly - most people can put their own four pillar lift together, but a two pillar requires a professional install.

Don't forget craigslist, you can save serious money buying used.

cheers,
scott
 

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You can rent a concrete saw and cut a square out and then dig it deep enough and pour the proper amount of concrete to support a two poster. I would think that a 3x3 pad would work.

Paul
 

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yes your right you need a good solid foot print for a 2 post...but i personaly would sugjest you put in a foot print even for a 4 post unless you personaly were involved with laying the concreet pad that it will be sitting on and KNOW FOR FACT that it was done right...ive seen many many floors that were not done correctly (tooo many years of construction and remodling)

watch craigslist like a hawk..odds are you can pick up a used lift for 1000-1500$

2 post and 4 post are pretty much the same to install
 

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I installed a 4 post in a shop that was primarily for storage came with a vinyl drop that hung between the ramps. It was a great design for storage but without the optional lift it became a pain to even remove the tires. there was a two post lift in the shop but some of the mechanics there complained about it because the cars tended to unstable when working on them.
So with all that I have no opinion:eek:
 

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Pcars leak oil? But they're German! It is my understanding the Germans never make mistakes (okay, a couple of times) so how could their cars?

Actually I want a single post lift. A US company makes one but it's a drive-on. I need to be able to work on brakes, etc. so would like one which also lifts using the jack points. A company in, I believe, Denmark, make just such an animal. Not a clue what the cost is. When I contacted them I received a reply (about three weeks later) asking if I wanted to buy a container of them. Shoot, I can't even afford one.

A friend of a friend who is Scandavian has about ten or so in his extremely successful Volvo repair shop.

However, I'm trying to save up for a really cheap two poster. I'm in a unit with about 15' ceilings and am inclined to think the floors are pretty thick so neither of those possible limiting factors bother me. I've tried Craigslist, but nothing there, at least in my area.

Biba
 

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I too have been looking at lifts. I've decided that if your primary interest is storage, get a 4-post. But if you are planning to do a lot of work, get a 2 post for the reasons mentioned before. I think most only require 6 inches of concrete. I have worked on many cars under my Brother's 2-post and feel MUCH safer than when they are on jack stands. There are NO stability problems at all. I'd also recommend getting the "offset" lift arms with a 2-post. That way you can open the doors with the car on the lift. Also, make sure the model you get has "low profile" lift points if you are working on race cars or lowered street cars. Since most 2-post lifts are rated at 10 tons, they are of course complete overkill for our cars.

Erik
 

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One warning about a 2 post lift, you need a concrete floor thick enough to securely mount it. I want to say 10", but my memory could be faulty. Plus the cost of assembly - most people can put their own four pillar lift together, but a two pillar requires a professional install.

Don't forget craigslist, you can save serious money buying used.

cheers,
scott
Recommended floor thickness is 5" - 6". There's nothing about a 2 post that requires a professional installation, I did mine myself. The biggest difficulty is drilling the holes in the floor for the anchor bolts. Simple if you've got a hammer drill. The anchor bolts can be found at a good hardware store.

In my opinion, 2 post is better if you do a lot of mechanical work on your car. You have full access to the underside and the suspension. I have the off set arms, and I have to be careful with my doors. And while it's very stable, you do have to be careful with the loading.

Most 2 post lifts are 7,000 lbs, some are 9,000.

4 post is better (again, in my opinion) if you're doing a lot of body work, as you have wide open access to the doors and what not. Also better if you're primary interest is storage, as it's easier to put a drip tray underneath the top car. Also, 4 post lifts don't really need to be bolted to the floor, so you could move it around if needed. Some are intentionally portable so you can roll them outside, assuming you had a flat driveway, and then the ceiling height is not an issue.

HTH,

bs
 

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The four post lifts come with an option to install a lift brace so you can jack up the car while on the lift. They also have a brace with a built in jack available to facilitate working on the suspension.

For storage purposes, the four post lifts are better than two posts since they allow the suspension to sit at its normal height. Reportedly if you jack a car off the tires for an extended period of time, it allows the bushings in the suspension to deform.
 

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I see I'm not the only one thinking about a lift....

One thing running through my little pea-brain is what about letting the suspension "hang" on a two post lift, especially for long term winter storage? Is that a bad thing??

All things being equal, I'd prefer the versatility of a two post lift, but wonder about the longer term consequences of letting the suspension hang down all winter.
 
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