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Toyota MinuteMod: Hi-Lift Jack Base

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Author: Joe Micciche October, 2000

The Hi-Lift is almost a mandatory tool for backcountry adventures, but snow, sand, mud, and other soft surfaces can render it useless.

The Hi-Lift jack is legendary for it's variety of uses offroad and around property, and it is one of the best tools a four-wheeler can carry. There are, however, conditions encountered offroad which can render the venerable Hi-Lift virtually useless: sand, mud, and deep snow.

Due to the small base of the jack and the pressure placed upon it when lifting a vehicle, the jack will simply dig in when placed on soft surfaces - sometimes it can dig down far enough that the vehicle cannot be lifted. And many times when this happens, there is nothing available to serve as a base to prevent the jack from sinking.

Drill three 1/2" holes in the wood, using the Hi-Lift base as the template.

I created a base for the Hi-Lift from some old oak shelving we had lying around. The shelf was 1" thick solid oak, and I simply cut a shelf in half and screwed the two pieces together into a single piece 2" thick measuring 12"x16". This base distributes the pressure of the jack over a wider area of the ground, which prevents the jack from sinking into the ground. And the base is small enough to tuck under an Action Packer in the back of my extracab.

There's enough clearance to easily get 1/2" hex nuts on, or thread the bolts from down the top and use wingnuts underneath.

To make sure the jack stays secured to the base when in use, I marked the jack's base plate holes on the wood and drilled 3 1/2" holes. Using 2.5" long bolts with either standard hex nuts or wingnuts, I can bolt the jack to the base for added stability and functionality.

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