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Technical report on the Trolley Jack

1.    Introduction

In this report, several aspects of trolley jack shall be discussed. These include a description the product or what it is, how it works, health and safety issues surrounding the machine and its components. The report shall also include the design criteria, methods of manufacture and product comparison. In this comparison, the product shall be considered with reference to other similar products and also its cost against the quality and functionality of the product. Towards the end of the report, a review of the whole report shall be done and general observations made. At the end, references from which information was researched shall be outlined.

2.    Product Description

According to Corneilse, Marr, Mogotsi and van der Hee (2007), a trolley jack is a portable piece of equipment that can be used to raise one side of a vehicle for instance when one wishes to change a vehicle tyre. It has been found out that an average trolley jack can lift a mass of up to slightly more than 2 tons. A single stroke of a trolley jack raises a load to for about 4 inches which is sufficient for trolleying. This trolley type can lift up a load for a maximum of 15.5 inches. It is thus appropriate for robust jobs yet it is relatively affordable.

3.    Trolley Jack design and manufacture

As the name suggests, the jack has properties of a trolley in that it can be pushed along courtesy of its wheel and two castors. The body of this device is made of steel (heavy-duty). The reason for the use of this metal is because of its tensile strength: It does not twist or bend easily.

So as to calculate the cost of manufacture of trolley jacks, quantity is a key consideration. This is because the larger the quantity is produced, the lower the average cost of manufacture (Tooley, Tooley & Dingle, 2004, p. 34). Therefore the average cost of manufacture is the total cost divided by quantity manufactured.

4.    The Components of the Product

As earlier stated, some of the parts of the device are the saddle and the release pedal. Other parts include a wheel, two castors, the lifting arm, control handle and the main body. The wheel and two castors are essential for its movement while the lifting arm is useful for making strokes. The main body covers the mechanical system that raises loads.

5.    How it works

The Automotive repair and maintenance: Level 2 stipulated that a trolley jack uses a hydraulic system to raise a vehicle. To do so, a saddle is placed under the vehicle in the correct position. According to Keeting, Sutton and Abrahams (2008), the next step should be to block the wheel so that it does not roll. The vehicle should be on the handbrake. Thereafter, a control handle is used for raising the vehicle after which it is worked on. However, after lifting for some height, the user should check whether the jack is still in its position. Safety stands or axle stands should then be fixed for safety purposes. Later, a release pedal is used to lower the vehicle.

6.    Comparison with other products’ quality, cost and functionality

In view of most technical experts, all what is considered in jacks is how high or low the device can lift for example a car. Therefore, a good jack should provide a maximum lift for to a vehicle so as to have maximum space for work. Another aspect on the functionality of the product is how fact it can work that is the number of pumps needed to reach the highest level. Additionally, functionality is based on the maximum weight the device can lift. Bearing in mind that there are many aspects which could be considered in rating jacks in general, when the above were considered in one of the investigations, the following types were rated to be the best in this order: Clarke CTJ3000QL, JCB70003 and Kamasa GE4841. An average Trolley Jack produced by KarKare costs about 45 Sterling Pounds. According to Tooley, Tooley and Dingle (2004), the company produces about 12,000 units of trolley jack. Another type of Jack called Ellis Jack or Cam-type jack at most 6*6-inch timbers placed side by side and joined by steel champs.

7.    Health and Safety Issues when Using the Trolley Jack

In their Fundamentals of technical rescue, the International Association of Fire Chiefs and National Fire Protection Association (2009) cautioned that when a technician is carrying loads on a jack, they should ensure that the load does not shift. This is because uneven distribution of weight can make the device to tip over and fall thus endangering the health safety of the user. In addition, whenever one is using a trolley jack, they should ensure that it is placed on a flat surface. The surface must also be hard so that it does not give way when a heavy load is being lifted. Therefore if the surface is soft, it is important that the user places a hard board or a steel plate under the jack for an even distribution of weight. It is also important to note that with regard to vehicles, a trolley jack should only be used to lift the vehicle but not to hold it place. One must use jack stands whenever working beneath the vehicle to avoid being crushed incase the device loses grip. When jacking a vehicle, one should block its wheels so that it does not roll. A tire should never be changed on a highway.

8.    Conclusion and general observations

This technical report was meant to describe some aspects of the trolley jack. This was successfully done through an initial outline of the way themes were to be tackled. Thereafter, the description of the device was done followed by its design and manufacture, its parts, how it works and some of the safety and health issues associated with its use. Later, the device was compared with other similar devices in terms of its cost, quality and functionality. It was clear that the product is relatively affordable and can do heavy jobs.

Although the trolley jack is generally efficient, it was observed that the hydraulic models are usually slower particularly when being lowered. It is thus satisfactory that heavy jacks should be used with heavy vehicles such as Lorries and buses in which speed is not of great importance.


Corneilse, M., Marr, S., Mogotsi, S. & Van der Heever, A. S. J. (2007). Automotive repair and maintenance: Level 2. Pearson South Africa.

International Association of Fire Chiefs  & National Fire Protection Association (2009). Fundamentals of technical rescue. Jones & Bartlett Learning.

Keeting, L. Sutton, P. & Abrahams, A. (2008). Automotive repair and maintenance. Pearson South Africa.

Tooley, M. H., Tooley, M. & Dingle, L. (2004). Higher national engineering. 2nd ed. Burlington, MA: Elsevier.

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