NASA Speed News - Volume 7, Issue 4, May

TOOLSHED ENGINEER

STORY AND PHOTOS BY ROB KRIDER

JACK STAND STRIPES

T he first time Toolshed Engineer appeared in Speed News magazine was back in May of 2012 during the first year of the magazine. wooden boards to the bottom of jack stands. Six years later I would like to go back to that little how-to story because I was negligent in failing to add one important part to the story. This is a part that took me six years to figure out myself. Wooden boards on the bottom of jack stands are a NASA requirement so that jack stand feet don’t gouge asphalt pavement in hot pits and paddocks at race tracks across the country. That part was easy to resolve: Cut out a board and use plumber’s tape and screws to affix the board to the jack stand. The part I failed to include in the story was that adjustable height jack stands give us racers options on how high we would like to have our car in the air. The problem arises when you have four jack stands and not all four are at the exact same height. I’ve made the mistake of dropping the jack and then seeing the car wobble on the stands because I had two corners on different sides of the car at different heights. It is always a scary moment watching the car rocking in the air. Going to the track is supposed to be fun, not a trip to the hospital because a 2,500-pound racecar fell on somebody. I’ve spent plenty of time In that story, I explained a simple way of attaching

1. Throwback >> In the first iteration of the Toolshed Engineer column way back in the May 2012 issue of Speed News, I laid out how to build jack stand boards and keep them attached to the stands with plumber’s tape and screws. A simple and easy project that still works for my team exactly six years to the month later.

counting the number of clicks a jack stand goes up and telling people on the other side of the car how many clicks I was using, hoping they counted the same. Inevitably there is confusion and we mess this process up. I knew there had to be an easier way. Finally, it came to me when I was staring at the car while it was sitting on the jack stands. Duh! Why

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