If It's Rusty,
Muddy and Bound Up...It's Not Worth Jack!!!
Guard looks like a gun case. Expect to get funny looks in
town if you mount it on the outside of your rig.
Products sent us out their new Jack Guard, which is designed to
hold and protect your Hi-Lift Jack. Hi-Lift offers a vinyl cover
for their jacks, but they really don't protect the jack all that
well. The Jack Guard is designed to not only protect the jack from
the weather, but also to act as a carrying and/or mounting system.
Made of polyethylene, the Jack Guard can mount to any flat surface
using the optional mounting kit. Though not necessary, the stainless
steel kit is intended to provide a safe and solid mount for your
jack. On our Project TJ, we already have a mount built onto our
Bulletproof bumper, so we did not order the mounting kit.
So if we didn't
intend to mount the Jack Guard in our Jeep, why did we order it?
Simply put, we thought it was an interesting product that we wanted
to take a look at. Once in a while, products come along that we
are intrigued by, frankly, and want to find out if they truly are
useful or not. Is the Jack Guard useful? Well, maybe. It really
depends on you and your rig. Here's the scoop...
Jack Guard itself will cost you $25.95 at print time. With the mounting
kit, the total is $45.95. Tack on shipping and another $8 if you
want the extension for a 60" Hi-Lift. Now figure that your
48" Hi-Lift probably cost you right around $50 and you may
ask why you'd spend 92% of the cost of the jack itself in order
to protect it? That's a very fair question and the answer is this.
If you've ever been in the middle of nowhereseville and you went
to use your jack and discovered that it was so rusted that it was
practically inoperable, then you know why a waterproof case is needed.
If you live in more arid climates, then perhaps you don't need this
The Jack Guard is very simple to use. Simply pull out the pin at
the large end and open up the hinged, removable cover. Next, slide
the jack inside. Believe it or not, it does get a bit tricky here.
At the small end, there is another pin. This pin needs to go through
the Hi-Lift and out the other side of the Jack Guard, where it then
gets locked in place. Lining this pin up with a hole in the Hi-Lift
was a tricky affair, but it was finally accomplished. A little practice
and you get the hang of it. This pin keeps the jack in place so
that it does not move around in the case. It also acts as a safety
in case the lid at the other end somehow opens up. You can also
use a padlock here if you chose, in order to keep thieves from taking
your Hi-Lift out of the Jack Guard.
pin holds the jack safely inside of the case and the lid closes
snuggly in order to help keep out the elements. You can also
replace the pin with a padlock to keep out the other
kind of elements.
Once this pin
is in, the lid on the other end can be closed and pinned shut. The
lid isn't a perfect fit during the first use, but once it's shut
it conforms perfectly. The latch takes a bit of muscle the first
couple times, as well. I have always been a little hesitant when
it comes to plastic latches, as they always seem to wear out. The
Jack Guard does come with a two year warranty, though, so this is
not a big concern in this particular case.
The Jack Guard
has a very large handle that balances the jack nicely when used
for carrying. The opening is large enough to fit gloves through,
as well, and the gloves themselves can be stored inside the lid,
as there is some extra space there. The lid also has indentations
molded into it that could hold a couple hand tools if yours happen
to match up with their shapes.
In My Case
Our fine specimin. Rusted, bent, and a beast to use.
old Hi-Lift has seen better days. Rust and mud will nearly
destroy your jack if left unchecked.
several years in Texas and now almost two years in the South, my
Hi-Lift was looking pretty bad. Rusty cancer had all but ceased
any operation of the jack. WD-40 and a screw driver allowed usage,
but it was a long and dreadful adventure. I was lucky enough to
win a new Hi-Lift at my club's Christmas party and it went right
onto Project TJ. The old jack is now an emergency spare, kept at
the house. Interestingly enough, the new jack had not yet been used
by the end of February and it was already rusting. The same goes
for several other new parts on the Jeep. The South is just not very
metal-friendly, to say the least.
The Jack Guard
could help to prevent further rusting and damage from the elements
on my jack. However, as I mentioned earlier, my jack lives on my
rear tire swing-out and that's where I want it to stay. So, for
me, the Jack Guard will not work on my rig. It is, however, the
new home for my spare jack. Underneath our house it can get very
damp, so the Jack Guard is, actually serving its purpose, keeping
the old jack in its somewhat-usable condition.
Here's the scoop. If you want to protect your Hi-Lift jack, have
a good mounting spot, and don't mind your neighbors thinking you're
carrying an assault rifle around with you, then the Jack Guard is
money well spent. You'll keep your Hi-Lift good-as-new and it will
work like a charm next time you need to use it. When you're rig's
in trouble and your jack functions as designed, you'll thank yourself
for spending the bucks. If you really don't have a good mounting
spot, you don't worry that much about your jack's well-being or
you actually do routine oiling and repainting of your jack (does
anyone?), then you probably don't need the Jack Guard.
Manufacturing Company, Inc.
P.O. Box 228
46 W. Spring Street
Bloomfield, IN 47424