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Another Modification To The Engine Hoist.

sanddan

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#1
I am in the middle of doing a new clutch for my corvette and had to make a fixture to help with removing the rear suspension cradle. A clutch change involves removing the complete drivetrain from the engine on back. I borrowed a fixture from a friend that mounts on the engine hoist that supports the transmission/rear end assembly but it wouldn't work until the rear subframe was removed. To make it easier to align things during the reassembly process I decided that the subframe fixture should include a parallel link system so the fixture stays vertical when raised and lowered. I modeled the basic engine hoist frame to make it easier to design the linkage. The new parts are shown in red.

cad design.png
First step was to drill the 2 pivot holes. The hole in the main support member was hand drilled.

clutch3.JPG

The other was drilled using the mill.

clutch4.JPG


The lower hole is original, used for attaching the chain, the two upper holes are for the 2 different fixtures.
Most of this will be built using materials left over from other jobs but I did have to buy some flat bar. First step is to cut two pieces to length that will be the lower links.

clutch5.JPG

Setup for drilling the 4 pivot holes. No close tolerances required so a simple stop was used.

clutch6.JPG

clutch7.JPG

I needed 4 spacers so I found a piece of an old barbell to use for raw material. Just a drilled hole and parted to length.

clutch8.JPG

clutch9.JPG

clutch10.JPG

Nothing fancy required.
 

sanddan

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#2
clutch21.JPG clutch17.JPG Next was to make the stem that forms the last part of the linkage. The support structure will be mounted to this piece.

clutch11.JPG

clutch12.JPG

Crappy weld, I used Tig and didn't grind off the mill scale. Ok for this project but I did go over it later with the mig welder. The jack came in handy to prevent the tabs from pulling in when welded.

The basic linkage assembled to the engine hoist. Checking the fit.

clutch14.JPG

clutch15.JPG

The rest of the design was done on the fly. I wanted to support the rear subframe and keep the weight balanced, also wanted to key the fixture to the subframe if possible so things wouldn't be able to shift around. The first piece is tacked together to check fit.

clutch16.JPG

clutch17.JPG

Add more tubes for the second support.

clutch18.JPG

clutch19.JPG

Time to check fit again. This process was done several times as the structure gets fleshed out.

clutch20.JPG

clutch21.JPG

So far the support piece has just been clamped in place as things have progressed. I decided to make this piece bolt on so it would knock down into smaller pieces for storage. It also allowed me to make it adjustable and I can use the basic linkage with a different fixture bolted on if needed later.

clutch22.JPG

clutch23.JPG


In action. It worked perfect, easy to align and lowered straight down without drama. I used 2 ratchet straps to clamp the subframe to the fixture.

clutch24.JPG

clutch25.JPG

A day well spent, now back to the clutch job. clutch13.JPG
 

sanddan

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#3
Another mod was required. The hyd slave cylinder the releases the clutch has a remote bleed line installed. The new slave wasn't finished where the bleed line was mounted so I milled the rough surface flat so the copper crush washer has a good seating surface. I also had to tweak the adapter fitting a bit. Sure is nice to have the right tools for the job.

slave1.JPG

slave2.JPG

fitting1.JPG
 

brino

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#4
That's a great way to extend the use of the shop crane. I will have to keep those ideas stored away in case I need them
Thanks for sharing!

Also, you did a great job of photographing the build and showing it in use...I often get to caught-up in the job to bother with good documentation.
Plus I hate having my cell-phone (camera) in the shop, too much dust and sparky/heavy things.....

-brino
 

sanddan

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#5
Thanks brino, wasn't sure how this would be received on this site as there isn't a lot of machining. I have an older shop camera that I use so I don't mess up the phone. Many of the pictures I'm taking on this job are going to help me put the car back together. I'm over 125 pics so far and still wish I'd taken a few more LOL.

I did this as I am too cheap to buy a high lift transmission jack for what I hope to be a one time job. The cheapest jack I found was over $200 and I am only into this about $30 in steel that I can always salvage if needed and a day of my extremely cheap time (retired). I am doing the clutch job by myself so I need all the help I can get. The local shop wanted to charge $1800 in labor alone as it is a major job getting to the clutch on a corvette. If I didn't have a lift I never would have attempted it, I'm too old to crawl around on the cold concrete.
 
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Tom Howland

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#6
Please correct me if I'm wrong. It looks like the corvette rear end/weight is extended out past the hoist wheels. Possible tip over. I've made a couple of mods on my hoist and made sure the supported weight is inside the 4 wheels on the floor. That is a really good modification.
 

sanddan

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#8
Please correct me if I'm wrong. It looks like the corvette rear end/weight is extended out past the hoist wheels. Possible tip over. I've made a couple of mods on my hoist and made sure the supported weight is inside the 4 wheels on the floor. That is a really good modification.
Well Tom, I wouldn't lift my lathe like that! The weight is small enough that it wasn't an issue in this case but you are right, the CG should be within the wheel base at a minimum to ensure it's stable. I moved the hoist as shown in the pics to the next bay over and never felt any "twitchiness". Lifting very heavy loads at or near the rated limit with the wheels within a foot of the lift point will make the opposite end of this hoist "light feeling". That's typically time to reset the legs if possible. I also spread out the main legs to provide a more stable base which helps a lot when moving a heavy load.
 

Ulma Doctor

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#9
Great Job!!!
i like your out of the box thinking!
I agree it always good to have the right tool.
it's also good to have the ability to make the right tool, when you don't have it!
 

zmotorsports

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#12
Wish I had a shop like that!
Hell, don't we all. I drool over Paco's shop every time he feels like he needs to show something else off.:grin:

But then again, I still keep coming back for more.

Mike.
 

Silverbullet

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#14
Just proves how useful the little engine crane can be. Got to love this site I find many more projects to do , ill have to live to a hundred just to get my list built.
 

RandyM

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#15
What a GREAT MOD to your hoist Dan! I really appreciate you posting the thread. I have no idea how I missed it a year ago or maybe I just cruised by not giving it a second thought. I just spent the last hour scouring the net looking for this exact mod for almost the same reason only to be led to a forum I am not only a member but on the staff. :laughing:

I am in the process of replacing the rear differential in my 85 Corvette and the whole diff and cross member needs to be moved. I do not have the same reasons to mod my lift as you, I just don't like the trans jacks and I want something that is far more versatile. I got the rear-end out with the help of 4 young lads visiting the neighbors, but I can't count on them being there when I go to install it. I think my job has a little lighter lift requirements than yours. I sure could have used their help when I dropped the exhaust, but I managed.

I am going to steal your design and possibly modify it to be a little more versatile for other jobs. Stay tuned, I will keep you posted on my design and follow up on the diff install, I'll start my own thread not to trample on your master piece. Thanks again for a great thread and mod. :cheer:
 

sanddan

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#16
Thanks Randy, just saw this. Let me know if you have any questions or need any pictures.

Lifting height is only limited by the engine hoist but my design can only be lowered until the rear section hits the upper arm on the hoist. This was the only way I could figure out that allowed me to do the work my self with some level of safety.
 

RandyM

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#17
Thanks Randy, just saw this. Let me know if you have any questions or need any pictures.

Lifting height is only limited by the engine hoist but my design can only be lowered until the rear section hits the upper arm on the hoist. This was the only way I could figure out that allowed me to do the work my self with some level of safety.
Yeah Dan, the lowering constraint is a consideration, though I don't think that it is an issue most of the time. The contraption would be used mostly for component support and up on removal it usually doesn't matter if you can lower it completely to the floor. I'll be sure to give you a holler if have further questions.
 
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