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Old 03-02-2013, 09:21 PM   #1
JustAnotherJeeper
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Default large-tire mod to engine hoist

Folks:

I am picking up a second-hand folding engine hoist next week.

Similar to this model: http://www.harborfreight.com/2-ton-f...ane-69051.html

I picked it up for less than half that price, specifically with a mind to make the following mods:

REAR:
One of the following:
-(preferred solution)
Remove the through-bolted rear casters, weld them back on, allowing me to
install receiver-hitch tubing in the rear legs (preferably) by welding the reinforcement band around the receiver to the face of the existing tubing, with a Grade-5 bolt run through the entire assembly (old tube and new) far enough back to clear the caster assemblies I will make (details below).

-OR, if there is not enough room to insert the hitch tubing inside the existing rear wheel crossmember, weld a new crossmember alongside the back of the existing part, providing receiver-hitch assemblies on each end. Run long stitch welds top and bottom, should be plenty.

Front:
- (cheapest/simplest):
weld or u-bolt non-castering ("fixed-gear" tires to match the rear, 90 degrees to the stock wheels. Drill appropriate holes on the other end of the tubing, 90deg to the existing, enabling me to rotate the front legs 90 and use either big or small wheels to match the rear end. This allows me to use the large wheels or the small stock wheels as needed. This will cause an interference in some situations, however, as the large wheels will be in the way when not in the down position.
I realize the OEM wheels up front caster as well. I have never cared for lifts with casters under the load, I prefer fixed gear under the load as they're stronger and less upsetting to the load when you turn.

-Best/most flexible for up front:
Buy more tubing to match the OEM tubing (or perhaps even larger). Attach wheels and drill holes for the pivot pins as needed, and prime/paint. Throw in garage until needed.

There are some obvious reasons NOT to use large pneumatic wheels on a hoist, like interference with low-slung cars when trying to use this on them. I am not concerned about that- I don't own low-slung cars, and this is a great way to tell folks "sorry, it won't work for your need, so you can't borrow (steal) it". Plus, my mods will allow me to still use the small OEM wheels as needed.

One likely asks why bother? I have a lot of heavy crap I need to lift which is often in my back yard, a friend's yard, or a salvage yard. I am a Jeeper, I think you know where I am going here. The Dana 44s I had in my yard were NO fun to get to the front yard when I was doing my last build. Also, I need to replace my Jeep's engine, and it is presently in same back yard. With large tires, I can actually use the hoist in situ, and don't have to wait to pour another driveway back there. I have numerous other uses as well.

So- anyone modded their engine hoist to use large tires, preferably with an eye to easily removing them? Any advice?
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Old 03-02-2013, 10:04 PM   #2
fflintstone
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Default Re: large-tire mod to engine hoist

FWIW those folding leg engine hoists are pretty chinsy now. I think they are 2 X 2 tube. I would look for an older fixed leg hoist they typicly have rectangular tube. My older hoist was a 3 x 3 frame with 2 x 2 telescoping legs.


I wanted folding legs and I bought a new hoist with an air over oil ram. I ended up converting my old hoist to a folding leg design and swapping in the new air over oil ram.

When I did mine I also ditched the 3” metal casters and went with 5” HD polymer casters. I welded 5/16 plate to the tops of my telescoping tubes to mount the casters on so it will still roll under cars. I wanted to weld some angle to the tops of the plates for more structure. It did not prove necessary I was able to pull a 454 Chevy with SM465 Trans and 205 T-case with no deformity.

For your outdoor application I would go with the smallest pneumatic tire I could find for the front. I have seen some on 4” rims. If you weld plates to both sides of the tube and bolt the tire in between you will only have the height of the tire to deal with.




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Last edited by fflintstone; 03-02-2013 at 10:18 PM.
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Old 03-02-2013, 10:27 PM   #3
RVDan
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Default Re: large-tire mod to engine hoist

I tried pneumatic tires on my hoist, it was still impossible to roll in the back yard with an engine hanging on it.
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Old 03-02-2013, 10:35 PM   #4
JustAnotherJeeper
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Default Re: large-tire mod to engine hoist

RVDan, how large were the tires? Larger tires make it easier to roll.

I don't intend to roll engines around on the hoist in my backyard other than far enough to clear the bay. They'll then be dropped as low as possible as quick as possible onto the utility wagon I am presently building- 13" tires under a 24X48" 150-pound 2X2X1/8" trussed rectangular tube frame with tiedowns and d-rings to secure everything. At some point though, yes, you still come to the point that it sucks moving multiple hundreds of pounds of axle and engine, but at least you CAN.

I may end up keeping the hoist stock, and getting one of the pickup-bed hoists from HF and mount it in my M101A1 trailer. While surely not as easy to use as an independent hoist, it would seem to work nearly as well. I wouldn't trust it for spotting an engine into/out of a vehicle though, which is the main reason I really want to do this mod to the hoist.

Last edited by JustAnotherJeeper; 03-02-2013 at 11:41 PM.
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Old 03-02-2013, 10:46 PM   #5
JustAnotherJeeper
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Default Re: large-tire mod to engine hoist

FFlint, thanks for attaching the pic, I was having trouble picturing your mods.

Pretty sure this hoist has 3X3X3/16 for the main boom. At any rate, even if I find it necessary to replace that piece of steel I am stil into this cheap. Confidence is high this is not necessary though.

GREAT idea sandwiching the front wheels between plates, making an 'inline skate" setup!

Forgot to mention the rear wheel arrangement: casters, on "receiver hitch" inserts. 10" tires, pneumatic. Lift a corner of the hoist (when free of load, duh? ) insert wheel assembly, pin it and go to the other side. Done. This arrangement allows me to use the OEM small casters or big wheels as needed.

I have a lot of the stuff already laying around my shed, to the extent this should cost me less than $75 to do the mods, and the material really needs to be used for SOMETHING. Might as well be something that'll help me scratch off more of the honeydo and project lists.

This is same mindset/need that has me presently building a 2'X4' flatbed steel wagon on 10" pneumatic wheels so I can pull an engine from the shed to the front yard (as well as use at salvage yards, etc). I have skads of tubing sitting in my back yard going to the rust demon, that was intended for other 4X4 projects for friends vehicles. I just cut up about 30' of rusty 2X2" rectangular that was bought to build sliders for a buddy's jeep when he returned from Iraq. Unfortunately, he won't need them.
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Old 03-02-2013, 11:49 PM   #6
JustAnotherJeeper
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Default Re: large-tire mod to engine hoist

Tracked down the specific model, it's HF #93840. Well-reviewed, should work well for me.
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Old 03-03-2013, 03:42 AM   #7
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Default Re: large-tire mod to engine hoist

If you can get some of the 8" trailer tires and wheels on it it should have no real issues if the ground is flat and solid enough.
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Old 03-03-2013, 04:23 AM   #8
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Default Re: large-tire mod to engine hoist

For the limited movement you describe (just rolling the hoist away from the Jeep enough to transfer the parts to a trailer) I would leave the hoist alone and find some 3/4" plywood to lay on the ground to roll the hoist on. I have done this many times, and sometimes even held panels together using scrap plywood underneath for the screws to hold the seams. The stock wheels roll fine on the plywood.

Don't go too thin on the plywood, as the wheels can break through thin stuff, and even 1/2" can bow enough to make the hoist difficult to roll.
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Old 03-03-2013, 04:27 AM   #9
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Default Re: large-tire mod to engine hoist

I'd skip the idea of moving with the shop crane. Build an engine cradle that will sit securely in a generic lawn wagon. Engine cradle is simple and strong, two pieces like the letter F on its back. Longer end piece on the F bolts to the bellhousing, shorter has a plate to bolt to the motor mount. You can buy them ready made for Ford/Chevy with casters to roll on the floor for about $30 in most auto parts places.
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Old 03-03-2013, 10:45 PM   #10
JustAnotherJeeper
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Default Re: large-tire mod to engine hoist

Plywood is a no-go, as I've been there done that. I need something that can traverse large amounts of ground unladen to get it to where I need it, and can then travel short distances to pick/place on the wagon. Plus, having priced ply lately, I can do this mod cheaper.

Since folks seem to be misunderstanding- I am NOT talking about dragging an engine on the laden crane from one end of the property to the other. I am talking about making the crane functional to get to the site without having to drive my Jeep there, and then briefly executing a pick and place.

As I do have a front receiver on my truck now, I may additionally weld a drawbar to the crane proper, giving me one more option as I have seen some folks do. But that's just a nicety, using free scrap. I seem to come across a lot of lost drawbars on my motorbike, and pick them up. I came across a dozen in the shed this past weekend.
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Old 03-03-2013, 11:04 PM   #11
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Default Re: large-tire mod to engine hoist

How about making a "Jib crane" using the front hitch and your engine hoist. It wouldn't take much to weld up a couple of feet and an attachment point for the hitch? I'd think that would be cheap and give you the mobility you need.
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Old 03-04-2013, 12:21 AM   #12
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Default Re: large-tire mod to engine hoist

Take a look at the cherry pickers that rental places have. They are designed to be towed by a trailer hitch from one spot to another.

If I was taking my shop crane over rough ground I would just put it on a hand truck and lash it down.
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Old 03-04-2013, 12:33 PM   #13
JustAnotherJeeper
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Default Re: large-tire mod to engine hoist

I don't know what a Jib hoist is, this bears investigation.

I just picked the unit up, will do some thinking on this through the coming week and start burning metal this weekend.

I can definitely see the wisdom in having the ability to hook it to my receiver hitch, thus making an extremely "offroadable" crane, but I don't want that to be my only option.
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Old 03-04-2013, 12:40 PM   #14
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Default Re: large-tire mod to engine hoist

If you have another Jeep or truck to use, what about making something that you could mount the hoist into the receiver of the vehicle you are driving. Modify it to be like the hoist that you can buy that mounts in the bed of a truck. The weight that a receiver will handle should be able to handle an engine off of it.

The bad thing with adding pneumatic tires and trying to roll an engine hoist through the yard is that whatever is hanging off of it is going to sway back and forth and everything will start fighting itself.
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Old 03-04-2013, 12:41 PM   #15
JustAnotherJeeper
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Default Re: large-tire mod to engine hoist

OK guys, I don't know how else to put this, as I have said it multiple times already:

I AM NOT going to run an engine across the yard on a hoist.
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Old 03-04-2013, 01:19 PM   #16
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Default Re: large-tire mod to engine hoist

Quote:
Take a look at the cherry pickers that rental places have. They are designed to be towed by a trailer hitch from one spot to another.
X2 - can't see the point of re-inventing this particular wheeled tool.

jack vines
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Old 03-04-2013, 07:59 PM   #17
JustAnotherJeeper
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Default Re: large-tire mod to engine hoist

Regards the rental-place cherry pickers and hitches- haven't seen one, and none of the places within 50 miles have them, according to a quick phone canvas.

I don't intend to spend a ton of money on buying a towable unit, don't need a towable unit.

I have the unit/victim in hand now. The lower support structure is just barely not large enough to accept a receiver tube. I happen to have two sections of receiver hitch tubing that are exactly one-half the width of the section at the rear wheels. Serendipity, much? I will weld them to the back of the existing rear wheel crossmember with a reinforcing plate of 1/8" underneath. casters on removable drawbars, rear is done easy and cheap.

The front wheels, I will likely just weld plates to and have thw wheel between them, as previously suggested. a 5/8" receiver hitch pin as a quick release axle, and call it done.

Total cost will be about $40. I have most of this stuff lalying around my shed going to waste at present.

For sheer "bonus win", I will add another section of receiver drawbar tubing to the bottom of the boom. To go vehicle-mount, take out 3 bolts and disengage from the bottom section. Done. I like it.

Last edited by JustAnotherJeeper; 03-04-2013 at 08:01 PM.
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Old 03-04-2013, 08:55 PM   #18
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Default Re: large-tire mod to engine hoist

A search of Google for all terrain engine hoist turned up these-



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Old 03-04-2013, 09:02 PM   #19
JustAnotherJeeper
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Default Re: large-tire mod to engine hoist

Quote:
Originally Posted by frpzxvaa View Post
it was still impossible to roll in the back yard with an engine hanging on it.
:sighs:

I honestly have to think at this point you're just messing with me. I mentioned several times this is NOT the goal. ;P
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Old 03-04-2013, 09:05 PM   #20
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Default Re: large-tire mod to engine hoist

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dustball View Post
A search of Google for all terrain engine hoist turned up these-

This. That's the plan.
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