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The Chrysler Windsor I just recently received had a very impressive jack but it is either broken or I have no idea how to operate it. 50/50 on which one of those it is. Any advice on using this type of jack or advice on a good replacement one?

 

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Edited by Rlasker3 (see edit history)
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What does it do (or not do)?

 

If it won't raise the hook, look at picture 2 and you see a trip lever on the left side of the jack. Move the lever UP 90° till it's perpendicular to the mast and the jack should raise the hook. To lower, move the lever back down till it's parallel with the mast. 

 

A drop of oil or smear of white grease on the trip lever and mechanism will help an old stiff bumper jack.

 

I personally think a bumper jack is emergency use only. If you intend to drive and enjoy, a small hydraulic floor jack or even a scissor jack from a newer vehicle are preferable.

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21 hours ago, rocketraider said:

I personally think a bumper jack is emergency use only. If you intend to drive and enjoy, a small hydraulic floor jack or even a scissor jack from a newer vehicle are preferable.

This is sort of exactly what I was wanting to hear. I did move the slider perpendicular and tried it but it apparently isn't catching. The thought process on my end is either it is worth fixing this jack because it has a true benefit over modern jacks or I just save the headache and get a modern jack such as this one.

#IgnoranceIsNotBliss

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Good thought. Clean the jack and mount it in trunk storage position so you have the factory appearance, then have a more substantial jack stashed for emergency use. Sears used to sell a nice one complete with a plastic storage case.

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There is, or should be, a wire type spring down in the works of the jack. If is missing or broken the jack is KAPUT. ........Bob

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There are some older cars where a bumper jack is necessary to raise the body above the rear axle to get the wheels off.  Ask me how I know...

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3 minutes ago, Gary_Ash said:

There are some older cars where a bumper jack is necessary to raise the body above the rear axle to get the wheels off.  Ask me how I know...

Me too...  So I carry a bottle jack to lift the frame by the offending tire, a scissors jack to lift the axle, and two 15" squares of plywood to go underneath the jacks.

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As rocketraider said, flip the lever. In one position, the jack will climb when you work the piece the lever goes in back and forth, and the go down with it in the other position. It is a little flaky with no weight on it, but if you are moving the piece the handle goes in all the way back and forth as far as it will go you should see action. If not, look inside at the pieces around that little flip lever and see if something is stuck. It is almost impossible for one of them not to work.

 

These are dangerous, but at the side of the road there may be no good alternative. Do *NOT EVER* get under the car while it is up on one of these. They are not only tipsy, but the mechanism can let go suddenly. I have seen it happen. They were regarded as fairly dangerous at a time when almost no one wore seat belts or motorcycle helmets, cars got painted without even a mask let alone a respirator, and people climbed radio towers to change the bulbs without a harness. They can also scrape or bend your bumper, or cause the bumper to flex enough to contact other body parts in some circumstances. For car guys, there's really a lot to dislike.

 

The trouble is, as previously mentioned, some wheels will not come off unless the axle hangs. It is true of most American cars with partially skirted rear fenders. The little extra width of some modern tires means that this problem can surface even on cars that did not have a problem when new. At the side of the road, there may be no good alternative to a bumper jack. Additionally, there are some old unibody cars, including a few Nash and AMC products where you can easily and unrecoverably bend the body if you try to jack from the "frame". It gets worse if there's rust. For those, there may be no good alternative even if you are not stuck at the side of the road.

 

If you plan to never use it even in a road emergency, then make sure your new jack can get any of the four wheels off of the car. Try it in the driveway.

 

 

Edited by Bloo (see edit history)
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22 hours ago, Gary_Ash said:

There are some older cars where a bumper jack is necessary to raise the body above the rear axle to get the wheels off.  Ask me how I know...

 

While this is the case with some of my cars, 

instead of the bumper jack,

I carry a lightweight (Harbor Freight) aluminum floor (trolley) jack - and a thick wood block-

and jack up the car by the chassis if changing a rear tire,

or just jack under the front suspension to get the wheel off of the ground

 

Remember to chock - usually, but not necessarily the diagonally opposite wheel

 

Never depend on the bumper jack if you can help it.

I also somewhere in the garage, have an older accessory tripod bumper jack. It folds, and uses a screw-type and crank mechanism, and is less unstable than a traditional bumper jack.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Those things are horrible...I had one drop a truck on the side of the road one time, for no apparent reason.  Fortunately I had just put the spare on and had a couple of lug nuts started, so it didn't drop all the way onto the axle.  Strongly recommend against using one unless there is absolutely no alternative.

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I hated those things when they were common and, like everyone else here that has experienced them, carried another jack - in my case a scissor jack and blocks of wood to go under the chassis. When I was working as a mechanic - about 40 years ago - there was a local instance where two idiots were trying to change a rear axle while the car was held up on 2 bumper jacks in their driveway...you can guess what happened. One was badly injured. The other was killed.

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