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ditchdigger
ditchdigger SuperDork
1/9/13 12:43 a.m.

My boss and I decided we needed a rotisserie in the shop. We have two cars that will get new floor pans this month alone and who knows how many more in the future. After considering quite a few options we ordered the $960 shipped unit from Quality Tool and Equipment in Temecula. At less than half the price of the cheapest comparable USA made one we figured it was worth a shot.

It arrived today. 4 days after ordering.

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Hmmm...they cant even spell Rotisserie. Granted most folks can't. Kind of a small box though. Almost 400lbs.

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More in there than it looks.

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First thoughts are that the finish is pretty crappy. Zero surface prep and carelessly applied powder coat. This doesn't matter to me. It isn't furniture, it doesn't matter what it looks like. Hell the cheapest US made rotisserie which is twice the cost doesn't even have a finish on it. Every piece of steel is 3mm wall.

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Jack cylinders are ........jacks? I dunno. Not much you can tell when they are just lying there.

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The casters are crap. We knew we would be upgrading these right away so they were never installed. Our 2 post lift has a stretcher in the center that these would never roll over so we went with some nice 6" pieces from a local materials handling place.

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uprights

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Hardware.

Uploaded from the Photobucket Android App again.. a bit crap. I mean really. Where can you actually find class 4.8 bolts

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Not installed. I went to the bolt bin for some 8.8 stuff.

One side together Uploaded from the Photobucket Android App

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Not looking bad. Fitment was perfect on all accounts. Everything lined up well and nothing binds.

Both sides assembled and together

Uploaded from the Photobucket Android App

Uploaded from the Photobucket Android App

And that is as far as I got today. Tomorrow I need to fab up mount pads to hang the 59 Abarth Allemano 750 spider on it.

Todays impressions are that you can really see where they cut corners. The finish is terrible...again that doesn't matter whatsoever. The casters might have worked on a smooth surface but we never gave 'em a chance. Everything else looks fine though. I (even though I possess the skills) couldn't have built it for this price. No way.

More when I get a car hung on it.

foxtrapper
foxtrapper PowerDork
1/9/13 5:08 a.m.

OK, so it's still two engine stands connected with a piece of square tubing. Fancy engine stands though.

Enyar
Enyar Reader
1/9/13 8:42 a.m.

Looks nice. I found mine on sale for $16.88 for my Weber.

http://www.lowes.com/pd_101484-53723-FL-6002H-2S_0__?productId=3095877&Ntt=rotisserie&pl=1&currentURL=%3FNtt%3Drotisserie&facetInfo=

Giant Purple Snorklewacker
Giant Purple Snorklewacker MegaDork
1/9/13 8:51 a.m.
foxtrapper wrote: OK, so it's still two engine stands connected with a piece of square tubing. Fancy engine stands though.

EXACTLY what I was thinking. Aside from having to fix the upward angle built into most engine stands with a little cut/weld this is a $250 DIY with bottle jacks from HF.

But... if the boss was buying one all nicely packaged in a box like that I would more than happy to assemble and use it :)

ditchdigger
ditchdigger SuperDork
1/9/13 9:59 a.m.

By the time you have modified your engine stands to give you almost 2 feet of vertical hydraulic adjustment how much have you saved? How much of the original stands are you using. You might as well start from scratch and at my hourly rate there is no way I can build one as cheap as you can buy this.

To fit the array of cars we see the height adjustment is critical. Even a small sedan will not turn over at engine stand height. Plus loading and unloading is massively easier.

xflowgolf
xflowgolf HalfDork
1/9/13 10:00 a.m.

Mine is made out of wood.

You said cheap...

Though technically it's more of a "tiptisserie"

Giant Purple Snorklewacker
Giant Purple Snorklewacker MegaDork
1/9/13 10:09 a.m.

In reply to ditchdigger:

I can make what I need to spin an E30 race car for about $250 and a full weekend down the tubes. I've worked it out a few times now... but never put my money where my mouth is. But... I only have one car at a time and my time is not money. It's a hobby shop. Your place looks a tad more professional (or you are a much better equipped hobbiest than I) :D

I wouldn't scoff at a free one showing up in a box all pretty and blue like that for certain... but I wouldn't drop $2k of my own coin on one either. Especially if I had to go get new hardware and casters on top of it.

petegossett
petegossett UltraDork
1/9/13 11:46 a.m.

In reply to xflowgolf:

Add some springs and/or counterweights and you'd have a new method for ejecting, err um, removing the engine.

dculberson
dculberson SuperDork
1/9/13 12:13 p.m.
Giant Purple Snorklewacker wrote: In reply to ditchdigger: I can make what I need to spin an E30 race car for about $250 and a full weekend down the tubes. I've worked it out a few times now... but never put my money where my mouth is. But... I only have one car at a time and my time is not money. It's a hobby shop. Your place looks a tad more professional (or you are a much better equipped hobbiest than I) :D I wouldn't scoff at a free one showing up in a box all pretty and blue like that for certain... but I wouldn't drop $2k of my own coin on one either. Especially if I had to go get new hardware and casters on top of it.

Since the rotisserie cost $1k and it being his work place, those two days would be a lousy payoff.

Giant Purple Snorklewacker
Giant Purple Snorklewacker MegaDork
1/9/13 12:22 p.m.
xflowgolf wrote: Mine is made out of wood. You said cheap... Though technically it's more of a "tiptisserie"

I saw one somewhere like that that had steel tubing like rungs on a rocking chair that bolted to the wheel face. Other than how cool it looked to tip the car on its side I think I'd constantly be worried about the strength of ball joints.

foxtrapper
foxtrapper PowerDork
1/9/13 12:42 p.m.

You have a nice unit there, don't get me wrong. And I'm not saying anything negative by commenting that I still see two engine stands join by a bit of square stock.

I well understand wanting something that is complete and does everything you might need, straight out of the box without any fiddling or customizing.

ransom
ransom SuperDork
1/9/13 12:55 p.m.

I guess a rotisserie is pretty much what I'd love to get my hands on. I need to build some kind of a cart to hold my 2002 so I can get it back out of the shop while it has no subframe on it so I don't lose my one in-shop space for the duration of that project. It would be nice if that stand also gave me easy access to the bottom of the car...

$250 sounds better than $960; this needs pondering...

EDIT: GPS, how did you arrive at such a figure? And am I correct in thinking that you probably didn't have the height adjustment?

Giant Purple Snorklewacker
Giant Purple Snorklewacker MegaDork
1/9/13 1:15 p.m.

2 HF heavy duty engine stands $59 each http://www.harborfreight.com/1000-lb-engine-stand-69520.html

2 Engine hoist bottle jacks $39 each
http://www.harborfreight.com/3-ton-super-heavy-duty-long-ram-hydraulic-flat-bottom-jack-36468.html

Optional: A couple swivel casters to replace the straight wheels on the back of the stands $3.99 to $whatever http://www.harborfreight.com/3-1-2-half-inch-x-1-1-4-quarter-inch-medium-duty-swivel-caster-41524.html

Bag of 1/2" grade 8 bolts, nuts and lock washers.

2 sizes of square or round tubing that fit inside each other. 1.75 and 1.5 roll bar tubing would be fine. 10' each ought to do it.

This assumes you have a decent welder, drills, a way to cut 2-3" steel tubing and time. You can do it cheaper if you already have two engine stands (I do). They can be returned to use for engines by swapping out the yolks so... it's not like you are ruining them. If they have an angle built in though you have to undo that. The stand I linked does not.

ransom
ransom SuperDork
1/9/13 1:24 p.m.

Thanks!

Huh... Now does it make more sense to get two more engine stands, or build a rack to put my engines on in the corner while I borrow the stands for a rotisserie...

Also, with my under-exercised fab skills, will it really only cost me one weekend to build... And what will I fail to take into account so it works for my 2002 but has to be rebuilt significantly for the next car

Wish I had a pair of the custom engine stands a friend of mine once borrowed: sized for big diesels, and with a worm-drive rotator. Seems like the odds of the axis of rotation going right through the body's CoG are not good...

ditchdigger
ditchdigger SuperDork
1/9/13 1:24 p.m.

Don't forget to add in a counter balance/Center of gravity adjustment. Without that it will be a two or three person job to rotate the body.

It is just some acme thread and a few other things, but makes actually using the rotisserie much nicer. You can see it in the pics on the one we bought.

Giant Purple Snorklewacker
Giant Purple Snorklewacker MegaDork
1/9/13 1:31 p.m.

In reply to ransom:

In truth, I had always seen these at 1.6 to 2k and didn't read the whole 1st post too well. For $970 shipped, I might have to agree with dculberson for once. I might save up a little to have a whole weekend making one spent putting the car on it instead.

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner MegaDork
1/9/13 1:58 p.m.

Good thread, thanks for the rundown on the cheap commercially available version. Keep us up to date as you use it.

dculberson
dculberson SuperDork
1/9/13 2:05 p.m.
Giant Purple Snorklewacker wrote: I might have to agree with dculberson for once.

That is one for the books!!! ;-)

mad_machine
mad_machine MegaDork
1/9/13 2:14 p.m.

I think I could swing that price to tip my fiat all the way over. Must make working on the underside MUCH easier

oldtin
oldtin UltraDork
1/9/13 2:30 p.m.

I stuck some 2x2 tubing together and made 2 engine stand looking things. Added some round tubing at the top. Made a couple of rigs to bolt to the frame and attach a smaller round tube - slips inside the engine stand top tube. Added some casters. I didn't connect the two engine stands - they are bolted to the car - although if you don't tighten down the adjustment bolt I guess they could come apart resulting in bad things. - I had a bunch of 2x2s laying around, but it would have cost somewhere between 200-300.

ditchdigger
ditchdigger SuperDork
1/10/13 11:24 p.m.

It turns out making the cradles to hold a Fiat 600 chassis was more difficult than I anticipated. But I got it mounted and spinning

Uploaded from the Photobucket Android App

The COG adjusters are a bit crude. The handles are too small to turn by hand. I started with pliers on the shaft to give a bit more leverage but ended up just tilting the body onto its side, locking the pivots and was able to turn the screws easily until it spins freely.

Uploaded from the Photobucket Android App

Uploaded from the Photobucket Android App

This 750 Allemano spider is an alloy body copper riveted to a fiat 600 steel chassis. The only thing sturdy enough to hold it up were the front leaf spring mounts and the rear trailing arm mounts.

Uploaded from the Photobucket Android App

Now to get the bottom side stripped and see how much of the floor pans need to be replaced.

Ian F
Ian F PowerDork
1/11/13 8:02 a.m.
Giant Purple Snorklewacker wrote: 2 HF heavy duty engine stands $59 each http://www.harborfreight.com/1000-lb-engine-stand-69520.html

I have one of those stands. I barely trust it to hold up an engine. Recent experiences with Chinese steels scares the crap out of me. They really seem to cut corners with their steel alloys. You can tell when you have to cut or drill it compared to old US made steel.

I don't know... the older I get, the less tolerant I am of fabbing up something that I can just buy. Especially when the purchased version has features that would be more difficult to work into a DIY version - the micro-adjustment system, for example.

$960 seems cheap to me compared to other versions I've seen for sale.

Giant Purple Snorklewacker
Giant Purple Snorklewacker MegaDork
1/11/13 8:09 a.m.
Ian F wrote: $960 seems cheap to me compared to other versions I've seen for sale.

That $960 item is the same chinese steel as the engine stand but, for $960 shipped I have to agree with you atleast on the time savings aspect.

It is the cantilever load that bends the yolk on those POS engine stands. I have a 2x4 under the front of the block on one of those right now to keep that from happening. The body of my e30 sans power train is only about 600lbs and it is supported at both ends so I think it would be fine either way.

4cylndrfury
4cylndrfury UltimaDork
1/11/13 8:13 a.m.
Ian F wrote:
Giant Purple Snorklewacker wrote: 2 HF heavy duty engine stands $59 each http://www.harborfreight.com/1000-lb-engine-stand-69520.html

I have one of those stands. I barely trust it to hold up an engine. Recent experiences with Chinese steels scares the crap out of me. They really seem to cut corners with their steel alloys. You can tell when you have to cut or drill it compared to old US made steel.

I don't know... the older I get, the less tolerant I am of fabbing up something that I can just buy. Especially when the purchased version has features that would be more difficult to work into a DIY version - the micro-adjustment system, for example.

$960 seems cheap to me compared to other versions I've seen for sale.

A guy on another forum I frequent has a signature that goes something like "I used to spend time to save money...then I got old. Now I spend money to save time...its the one thing theyre not making more of"

As I age, I find it more and more true...except I rarely have more money lol

NOHOME
NOHOME SuperDork
6/8/14 5:59 p.m.

I love rotisseries. But when people talk about doing sills on these things, I get concerned.

The rotisserie cantilevers the loads into the chassis. If the car is on it side, it will try to twist the chassis.

Structural work needs to be done on a flat surface with the tub supported by the suspension pick-up points. If you are going to do this on the shop floor, shim the jack-stands to that they are level.

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