Quantcast
Jump to content
  • Join the TowForce community.

    It looks like you're not logged in. Register to get started and to receive Tower Down Notices.

Adapting fork lift forks to a self loader


Recommended Posts

As a hobby I collect and restore 71-72 honda z600 micro cars.  I bought 6 of them in a field in central Michigan.  The cars have been sitting over 35 year on the ground. The floors and rockers are gone. The first one I tried to pull out split in two. So I devised a plan to lift them lenght wise  with a fork lift. I ordered some 84 inch fork extensions to adapt to my jerr dan self loader. The cars only weigh 1200 lbs  I need to lift them to my trailer.  Anyone ever seen forks put on a wrecker?

20201207_210937.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The only issue I can see is if you were to attempt just placing the fork extenders over the self loaders pivot arms. They might bend. If you can mock up some attachment off the cross bar itself, I see no problems. I have wreck-picked cars using the cross bar and the boom extended with the winch line run down to the rear to get a scrapper out of a tricky spot. I wouldnt recommend you try it with these vehicles since your aim is to save them. It works, but causes significant damage to the car. 

PROFESSIONAL TOWING & RECOVERY IS NOT JUST A JOB.. IT IS A LIFESTYLE

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Can you run a strap around the back window, down under and out through the front, might spread the force out enough to keep them together?

 

I think you are going to bend your self loader arms with the extensions, 1200# multiplied by the extensions it going to put a lot of force on those arms

A good friend will bail you out of jail, but a great friend will ...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Agreed on the danger of bending the (self-loader) forks, while they can surely handle the weight on their own, they may not be able to handle it hanging at the far end of the forklift forks acting as levers.

 

Wish I had some helpful advice on how to retrieve those little cars.  Do you think the roof structure is strong enough to lift them sideways through the door openings instead?

 

If the floors and rockers are gone (and I believe you 100% on that) I think they would still suffer a lot of damage if you try to lift them from underneath with the forklift forks.

 

Richard

Edited by someotherplace
Link to comment
Share on other sites

How far do they have to be moved to trailer.Years ago I had to move a bunch of MGs and MGBs in this condition.I have a method creating a kind of sled with 4x4s  to keep them from coming apart.

Kevin's American Towing Service
Ph: 631-654-8811

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Most of the weight will be on the first 4 feet of the forks. I'm going to build it,and test it on a car I have. Hopefully it works..the first car we tried to remove failed

FB_IMG_1607476311335.jpg

They only have to be moved 75 ft to a road. ,but they are sunk into their axles 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The cars that I moved we trenched under the cars pushed in 4x4s the length of the cars and tied suspensions to 4x4s screwed 2x4s across 4x4s basically lifted 4x4s and sleded car to road for pickup

Kevin's American Towing Service
Ph: 631-654-8811

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I sounds as though constructing a skid and maneuvering that under the vehicle by lifting one end. As that would likely be a much better alternative to creating forks which could do harm to your wheel lift. I am assuming you have a regular style wheel lift rather than the common autoload most of us are thinking about. That is what many of us operate in light duty these days.

 

I suppose if I were to do it your way and I had a Regular L Arm style wheel lift I would create short extensions lift one side of the car the stabilize on each end position the lift under and behind the tires then lift. Of course it will work better if you are able to remove the slides from your stinger. In the end a Skid Loader would be ideal, since a tow truck doesn't make for a good front loader or rear loader in the situation.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, TowZone said:

I sounds as though constructing a skid and maneuvering that under the vehicle by lifting one end. As that would likely be a much better alternative to creating forks which could do harm to your wheel lift. I am assuming you have a regular style wheel lift rather than the common autoload most of us are thinking about. That is what many of us operate in light duty these days.

 

I suppose if I were to do it your way and I had a Regular L Arm style wheel lift I would create short extensions lift one side of the car the stabilize on each end position the lift under and behind the tires then lift. Of course it will work better if you are able to remove the slides from your stinger. In the end a Front Loader would be ideal, since a tow truck doesn't make for a good front loader or rear loader in the situation.

It's a self loader.  What it thought I'd do is construct  brackets that go in the cross part that the l arms pivot on and go on top over the l arms.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

47 minutes ago, Brian Joseph said:

It's a self loader.  What it thought I'd do is construct  brackets that go in the cross part that the l arms pivot on and go on top over the l arms.

I understand what your trying to accomplish, I am concerned that the pivot arms are not going to handle the excess stress from the lever action of the forks. I realize the cars are pretty light, But the weight at the lift point is multiplied ( at the pivot arms ) for every 12" that your add-on forks are long. Now, I am not saying your plan wont work, but I am concerned your going to damage your rig.  

PROFESSIONAL TOWING & RECOVERY IS NOT JUST A JOB.. IT IS A LIFESTYLE

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think I would just rent a tracked skid loader with forks and be done.   We just had a tracked Kubota SV75 the other day and it cost $250 to rent for the day.

 

I have bent an L-arm on my MPL40 once before while making a silly mistake and if i recall it was over $300 for a new one.

  • Like 1

store_21169_logo_image_1613770811.png

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I still think I would try a cheap 30 foot strap and use it like a cruise loop and go around the outside of the back window and down under the front, even if you have to dig out to get it under just the control arms.  That would spread out the stress as it lifts under the control arms when you are winching to get it up and out of the mire.

A good friend will bail you out of jail, but a great friend will ...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

These replies are good sound advise as the claws/pivot arms may not take the stress. Once the integrity of those arms are stressed they bend. At that point you will need to replace one or both as they cannot be straightened or welded. To replace just one is at least $250 or $300. That only would cover the cost of the rent on a proper skid loader.

 

If you do not go that route then a large strap will be far better then forks. This was an interesting recovery of a 1966 Shelby.

 

https://www.towforce.net/topic/8746-found-1966-shelby-mustang-gt350h-sunk-in-ohio-backyard-40-years/

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Unfortunately, your content contains terms that we do not allow. Please edit your content to remove the highlighted words below.
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

√ó
√ó
  • Create New...
Please Sign In or Sign Up