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Need engineers or experienced folks for material recommendation on vehicle ramps

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  • Need engineers or experienced folks for material recommendation on vehicle ramps

    I’m getting ready to build some car ramps (not for a trailer, the kind you can drive up on that gets the car up in the air so you can work on it). I think I’ve decided on going with 1x1 square but was unsure what wall thickness. Or if you guys think of something better than 1x1, I’m open to suggestions, though I’ve kinda ruled out angle stock, I don’t really wanna use that. Thanks!

  • #2
    What model car?...Bob
    Bob Wright

    Spool Gun conversion. How To Do It. Below.
    http://www.millerwelds.com/resources...php?albumid=48

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    • #3
      Originally posted by aametalmaster View Post
      What model car?...Bob
      Probably the primary one on it would be my 67 Mustang. Having said that, it could also be my 66 Mercury Monterey which is like twice the size.

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      • #4
        I guess you’re fed up with the junky options of either plastic or weak stamped sheet metal?

        Don’t blame you.

        I gave in and got the plastic ones, just didn’t have time to build a set.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by ryanjones2150 View Post
          I guess you’re fed up with the junky options of either plastic or weak stamped sheet metal?

          Don’t blame you.

          I gave in and got the plastic ones, just didn’t have time to build a set.
          I’m working on my fab skills and it’s a good project, particularly since it’s something I can definitely use.

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          • #6
            In terms of a "beam" wall thickness does not add that much strength. You gain far more strength from height than from thickness. Having said that I wouldn't use less then 1/8. Draw up some sketches so we can critique the design. 1x1s is not all that strong so your gonna need pieces fairly close together. On the sides if you weld a skin on the whole way after the frame then that will also add a lot of strength. If you were an engineer you could design something that is lightweight and rated to hold x amount of load with a given safety factor. Since your not you better over build it so the car doesn't fall on you
            www.silvercreekwelding.com

            Miller Trailblazer 325 efi
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            • #7
              Not too long ago I built some “stools” for weighing drag cars. I had no earthly idea what the guy was asking me to build until he showed me some pictures. Apparently the ones sold commercially are made from solid gold because it darn sure didn’t cost that much to make them.

              Dig up some pictures of some older model car ramps and mimic the designs.

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              • #8
                So I went and measured my dad’s old stamped steel ramps (see picture below for measurements). It appears that every fabricated service ramp I’ve found on Google Images used 2x2 angle so maybe that’s what I’ll have to use. Maybe it gives the best weight/strength ratio? What are your guys thoughts on material and thickness?

                I’m thinking put the cross pieces (width-wise) at 4” O.C. Thoughts on that?

                Attached Files
                Last edited by Acooljt; 01-14-2020, 09:16 AM.

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                • #9
                  You need to think of the top of that as a beam. Without any posts then that beam has to be strong enough for the weight of the car. So lets just say 2000 lbs (really no idea on the weight is since you didn't answer the question on what vehicle its for). So a span of 34.5" with a point load of 2000 lbs in the middle say. 1" or 2" angle not gonna cut it for that. You need to add some posts to the side. Even 1 post in the middle cuts the span in half but its not like its much material so add several posts. Each "cross member" must also be able to handle the full weight. The span here is 10". There are beam calculators online but the one I usually use only goes as small as 2" hss. Now if you build that ramp like that using a few more posts and say 1" x 1/8 hss then it might be ok but Id be inclined to go to 1.5 or 2". Using the bigger stock and staying with 1/8 wall thickness is better value for your money as said before then using 1" with a thicker wall
                  www.silvercreekwelding.com

                  Miller Trailblazer 325 efi
                  Miller extreme 12vs
                  Thermal arc 186 ac/dc
                  Lincoln power wave 455m/stt with 10m dual feeder

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Willvis View Post
                    You need to think of the top of that as a beam. Without any posts then that beam has to be strong enough for the weight of the car. So lets just say 2000 lbs (really no idea on the weight is since you didn't answer the question on what vehicle its for). So a span of 34.5" with a point load of 2000 lbs in the middle say. 1" or 2" angle not gonna cut it for that. You need to add some posts to the side. Even 1 post in the middle cuts the span in half but its not like its much material so add several posts. Each "cross member" must also be able to handle the full weight. The span here is 10". There are beam calculators online but the one I usually use only goes as small as 2" hss. Now if you build that ramp like that using a few more posts and say 1" x 1/8 hss then it might be ok but Id be inclined to go to 1.5 or 2". Using the bigger stock and staying with 1/8 wall thickness is better value for your money as said before then using 1" with a thicker wall
                    I did answer what cars it’s for up above. The biggest car it will need to hold is likely my 66 Mercury Monterey which is 4000 pounds, though the ramps would only need to support a fraction of that.

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                    • #11
                      I missed that. Add some mid posts and you should be ok. Still id go 1.5 square tube just to be safe
                      www.silvercreekwelding.com

                      Miller Trailblazer 325 efi
                      Miller extreme 12vs
                      Thermal arc 186 ac/dc
                      Lincoln power wave 455m/stt with 10m dual feeder

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Willvis View Post
                        I missed that. Add some mid posts and you should be ok. Still id go 1.5 square tube just to be safe
                        So you think I should go square instead of angle?

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                        • #13
                          You’re gonna end up with some serious ramps. Heavy and heavy duty.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by ryanjones2150 View Post
                            You’re gonna end up with some serious ramps. Heavy and heavy duty.
                            What are your thoughts? I’m open to any and all opinions. I do want something that won’t drop the car on me, obviously, but it would be nice to have them somewhat portable. I’m a big guy so heavy usually isn’t a problem but no point in going overkill either.

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                            • #15
                              I tend to over build things myself, but I’d take a look at what’s out there for ramps and get some ideas. Those stools for weighing a drag car looked like just short stools with a piece of angle flipped over on the ends to give a little bump for the tires. All the parts cut from 1/4” 6061 plate except the angle on the top.

                              If I was making ramps, I’d probably make them out of aluminum of similar thickness. The strength is just as much in the design though, but I ain’t no engineer or an English professor.

                              Take a look at race car accessories and race car trailer accessories, there’s some pretty cool ideas out there.

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