A few months ago someone mentioned that they got a replacement hydraulic cylinder for their harbor freight shop crane.
And I need a bit more info.
Today the cylinder on my HF 1 ton HD fold up crane lost much of it's UP.
I had to use my floor jacks on the front legs of the crane to get the motor high enough to put on the motor stand.
It was cold so I am hoping it will be OK in the spring
The cylinder is listed at 3 tons and I can get another from HF for $50 but need to consider alternatives in case it doesn't work when things warm up
Please tell me where you got yours
Check the hydraulic oil. There should be a small plug on the side of the cylinder. Check/fill when it's down all the way.
The rubber plug may look like a painted round head rivet, since most of the time the cylinder is painted with the plug already in place.
get one like this, no worry's.charley
p.s. 3 tons. thats the best i can do on the pic. charley
one more pic.charley
My HF crane looses some lift in the cold. When it warms up it works just fine.
I replaced mine with this one because it was the same length just larger in diameter and it was on sale for the same price as the 3 ton. I know the hoist won't lift that much but I have lifted a cummings 5.9 with it.
I have a new, never used 3 ton hoist jack if you're interested. PM me.
I've replaced the cylinder on my HF hoist once in 20 years of ownership. This winter I'm noticing that the hoist doesn't pump up as readily as it used to do. But if I pause a second or two at the end of each upstroke of the handle, the travel per stroke is much improved.
Now, about that HF paint shaker I bought about 2 years ago. Quit working a few months ago. I took it apart and everything looked clean as a whistle. I flushed off all the existing oil and gave it a fresh coating of MMO (there's that word again). It worked after I put it back together, but was a no-go the first time I needed to use it.
There are quality tools and there are Harbor Freight tools. You get what you pay for. That being said, if you look at hydraulic tools in terms of "grade", harbor freight is poor mans hobby grade, OTC, Enerpac or old power team is working man industrial grade. If I could afford industrial equipment I'd buy nothing else. If all I could afford was harbor freight I'd quit the hobby. But there are good grades of tools for less than an arm and a leg that are quite capable of safely doing the job. One that comes to mind is Norco.
HF tools run between fairly good to crap. If the price is to good then the odds are that it is crap. I have a 2 ton HF engine hoist that I have owned for 11 years. I have used it about 6 or 7 times. If I could afford OTC or Enerpac tools for very occasional use I would have them. I am not going to quit the hobby due to tool choices. I wanted and sort of needed a 14 inch band saw today. HF did not have one. Lowes had a nice Porter Cable band saw for a good price and I am looking forward to putting it together tomorrow.
I have had the HF 2 ton crane for 3 years now. I not only use it for T engines but to pull the engine from my son's 88 4x4 chev truck, twice. (He installed a borrowed engine to drive on while he rebuilt and blue printed his original engine.) We also use it for other lifting jobs on a regular basis and just have to remember that the ram does not work as good cold as when warm. It was well worth the money I spent on it. Besides it stores so nice when folded up.
I got some jack /hydraulic oil and will try that as a first step.
Given the cold comments I think I will get some heat tape like they use on mobile homes etc and see if that helps
It will better than storing the crane in the kitchen
In the old days people would think of overhauling a component like this before replacing. Has anyone tried overhauling a Harbor Freight hydraulic cylinder or jack? I asked a local hydraulic jack shop to do this a few years ago and was warned that parts support from the far east was poor and that their results with such import cylinders had been hit or miss. I took a chance. Mine leaked again a short time after the rebuild.
I've found that hydraulic jack oil doesn't like the cold, gets too thick.
Being that ATF is a high quality hydraulic fluid and says thin at colder temperatures that's all I use in bottle jacks and floor jacks. Still works good at 30 or 40 below.
I,If only i wonder why some do not just simply build/install a jib crane? Installed outside it could be swung inside/outside as needed.Cheap to build,and save a job? Bud in Wheeler,Mi.
Jib crane ???
Try a couple of Viagra in the cyclinder
If you build a crane set in concrete and mix Viagra into the concrete will it set up harder.?
I tried Viagra once.
It stuck in my throat, now I have a stiff neck!