Its forerunner is the cat or mechanical, conventional or manual jack, the one that we usually see among the safety elements of vehicles, useful for example to change a wheel, for example before a puncture. Its inventor was probably Richard Dudgeon, around the mid 1800’s. A really simple mechanism, as is often the case, resulted in one of the most widely used and most popular items in the world.
One of the first things that stands out is that in Spanish they are called «Gato» (in English for example they are usually called Jack), Why is it that hydraulic jacks are called “Cats”? While there is no definite explanation, many believe it is due to its shape. Let us explain this, the jack, when it is in the stowed or closed position, is flat, however, when it is brought to its extreme extension, we could say, “it rises”, it acquires a rhomboidal shape that may remind that of the cat ( animal) with an arched back, when it is put in a defensive position.
Others believe that the name is due to the cricket car, its four rudas resemble the four legs of the cat (animal) and the lever could resemble the tail. Both explanations are equally possible, the truth is that even today, in a mechanical workshop, the expression “bring me the cat” could give rise to some confusion.
Although there are innumerable types of mechanical and hydraulic jacks, depending on the application, automotive, industrial, hobbyist, etc. In this particular article we will address in particular what refers to the jack or hydraulic jack cart.
Hydraulic jack or jack cart
Although we have already made an introduction to the subject, we are going to deepen the different aspects to learn more about hydraulic jacks in a series of articles, bearing in mind that the objective of this tool is to facilitate the lifting of heavy loads, so safely and with minimal effort.
Before getting into the topic of this article, that is, at parts of a hydraulic jackIt is important to clarify that for conventional functions, both for individual and professional use, in the car, in the mechanic’s workshop, in the rubber shop, etc. The 2- and 3-ton hydraulic car models typically perform most of the functions.
Parts of a hydraulic cart:
Crack cart wheels: They are usually equipped with 4 wheels that can be made of steel, plastic or simply rubber. Two of which are fixed (front) and two are mobile or rotating (generally the rear) to facilitate rotation and placement in the appropriate place. In some models, they add an anti-slip element to the wheels to give it greater security when supporting the load.
Body: The first aspect to take into account with regard to the body is the design, there are low-profile models that are usually convenient to facilitate access, for example for those who perform tasks in tire shops, mechanical workshops, etc. On the other hand, the body material can be solid metallic and in some cases aluminum alloy. It is very important when it comes to choose to buy a crique car, check that the structure is well reinforced, with good fixings. Also that the paint is well made and that it is durable, not only for aesthetic reasons, but also to prevent deterioration aspects that could arise with premature corrosion.
Handle or handle: it is placed in relation to the jack and is used, on the one hand, to pump and raise the pressure of the piston causing the lifting of the load. On the other hand, to transport the car from one place to another. The most important thing to keep in mind is that it is well made, durable, since force and leverage is carried out on it. Sometimes some models have protection elements or grip on the handle for a firmer and more comfortable grip, however, it is highly recommended to use protective gloves.
Hydraulic pump: It is the heart of this tool, it contains the oil and that is where you have to pay all your attention. There are single piston models or with two or more pistons, in general, two pistons allow better and faster lifting. As for the components of the pump, they are usually made of cast iron, but at first glance it is difficult to know, therefore it will be necessary to consult with the manufacturer to relieve the information in each case.
Overload valve: some models have this extra that gives additional protection to the cylinder, preventing damage that could be caused by excess loading.
These are the fundamental parts of a jack or hydraulic jack car, as always, it is highly recommended that when using it the safety standards recommended by the manufacturer are followed, in general terms it is recommended:
- Wear safety gloves and shoes (with protective toe caps)
- Do not exceed the indicated load capacity. As a general rule, the weight to be lifted should be a maximum of 70% of the jack’s load capacity.
- Work on an orderly, clean, dry and horizontal surface.
- In case of working on a vehicle, do not get under it without first having secured at least two other points.