An uplifting experience

Ever since I started Fiat fiddling I have always thought that a car-lift would be a great addition to my garage. The problem that I had, as have most other car fiddlers, is the ceiling height of our garages. So for years I have been searching for a suitable lift but to no avail.

Back in 2019 my wife and I decided that it was time to downsize so we sat down and made a list of must haves for our new home. On my list was a four car garage with a high ceiling, not too much to ask for.

When we moved at the beginning of 2020 did I get my wish list? In one word, NO!

Once we had emptied the garage of all the boxes from the house move I assessed how best to use my two car garage with an 8ft ceiling height.

With plenty of time on my hands (due to lock down) I put up a new ceiling, installed new lights and decorated it throughout. My next task was to go onto the internet to see if there is now a mid-height lift suitable for low ceiling garages. I came across an American manufactured lift called MAXJAX with a UK agent, what a great result.

NO, as it turned out, MAXJAX had gone bust so no stock was available. I did some more searching and discovered that a new company had taken over the manufacturing rights of MAXJAX. A quick phone call to the new company in the US established that indeed they had started up production again. After a few more emails and phone calls I found a new MAXJAX agent in Holland and, even greater news, they had stock.

I talked to this company and the only advice they had was that to make sure that when this lift is bolted down to the floor the foundation of the garage is able to hold fixing bolts of 90 ft-lbs torque.

Within two days of ordering the lift it was delivered on a vehicle with a tail gate lift, the weight is over 10cwt so a heavy box. Once I had unpacked the lift my first job was to test the structure of the floor which I suspected would not be strong enough as the property is built on piles. My worry was proved to be correct so a builder was called in to strengthen the floor under the two lift uprights, only a days’ job.  I then lined up the two uprights, as per the instructions, and drilled the five fixing holes into the floor for each upright to secure them to the ground. Once in place each bolt has to be torqued to 90 ft-lbs hence why the floor needs to be strong enough to withstand these pressures

Another great advantage with this lift is that the uprights are on wheels so if you need more space in your garage you can unbolt them and store it in a difference area.

When I connected the hydraulic hoses to the pump it was time to test the lift and I did so without any cars being lifted.

As testing went without a hitch it was now time to try a car on the lift, which I can confirm was a very tense moment. With the car going up inch by inch and my checking it every few seconds, the only other problem was making sure that the roof of the car did not hit the ceiling before the lift reached its maximum lift height. I can confirm that I had only two inches to spare.

So now, with the lift in constant use, was it worth all the effort? I can say a big YES and to any member thinking of fitting a car-lift in their garage, please get in touch with me so I can point them in the right direction.

The company who supplied my car-lift from Holland is LiftMotive and their website is www.liftmotive.com

                                                                               Rod Scanes