Originally Posted by mgmetalworks
This is one of those shop tools that you'll wonder why you didn't buy it sooner. It's been very integral to my work for the last several years. That said, if I were in the market for another lift, I wouldn't even consider the "budget" brands. I've been under a few of those and they give me a weird feeling in my gut every time. The low cost lifts are made with lighter gauge materials and what looks like "speedy" and "low skill" processes.
I couldn't agree more. I have a 12k Derek Weaver lift and even with the top support I can lift vans on 35's and SMB pop top/rack almost
high enough to stand under. I can only find a 10k just like mine on their website now but mine looks just like this:
Here it is with a van on it not lifted about a foot from the support bar but I have my support bar on the lowest height setting due to the ceiling of my shop. Note the high rack on that van and there is still a foot or more above it. Just FYI, your comfort level under a 10k van more than 6' in the air will go away quickly. You may think you want those things that high up in the air but it doesn't inspire confidence. I'm happy to lift most vans a few feet and roll around under them with on a stool.
I also steered clear of the cheapest ones out there and found a happy medium in the one I bought. 5 or so years ago it was $2400, looks like they've gone up a lot. Weaver branded lifts are made by VSG (Vehicle Service Group) who make Rotary Lift and other common ones.
I recommend getting a Certified lift no matter what you buy, read this page:
Something else many don't know or think to ask. If you order one of these it will come on an 18 wheeler in one really big package. About 2' wide by 12' long by 4' high all broken down and crated. You'll need to have it delivered to a dock with a forklift. I had mine delivered to a friend's business and I used the forklift to unload it from the flatbed it came on. I completely overloaded my poor trailer getting it home but it was only a couple miles. If you can drill concrete and wire an 240v outlet the rest is cake.