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2005 Honda Accord LX, I4
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Hello Fellow Accordians :wave:

I was in market for new ramps since i decided to take the charge to do relatively easier maintenance tasks such as oil changes and ATF at home. After looking at the budget ramps available at Walmart, Autozone, Harbor Freight etc i decided to build wooden car ramps myself.

I searched on google for design ideas and was overwhelmed by so many existing types however most of them complained about being too heavy, approximately 50 lb each :0


Wood in general is quite heavy and creating a lightweight ramp definitely required exploring multiple arrangements. The engineer inside me woke up and i immediately started drawing up different options in AutoCAD to come up with an economical solution :nerd


I evaluated the following options in different configurations:

1. 2" x 10" stacked to create step structure
2. 2" x 12" stacked to create step structure
3. 2" x 6" inclined ramp at 13 degrees
4. 2" x 6" stacked in both longitudinal & lateral directions
5. 2" x 4" inclined ramp at 13 degrees
6. 2" x 4" stacked in both longitudinal & lateral directions

After rigorous material quantity analysis along with cost (Yes, i made an excel spreadsheet :tongue:), i settled down on the 2" x 6" inclined ramp at 13 degree for the following reasons:

1. Most cost economical ~ $20.34 (lumber + Screws)
2. Light weight ~ 25 lb. each
3. Maximum height ~ 7.5 inch off the ground


The default clearance from the tire to mud guard at front is about 8 inches in length and 5 inches in height so 13 degree angle was good enough to work. However, this might need tweaking if your car is lowered.


Once the drawing was finished, i had to make sure that i will be able to get that 13 degree cut otherwise this whole mission would be in jeopardy. I have a colleague who is known in my company for his exceptional woodworking skills. I showed him the design and asked for his feedback regarding that 13 degree angle cut. He said that it was a piece of cake if you had the proper tools. Living in an apartment without garage doesn't provide me the liberty to buy a lot of tools so i was discouraged. I was even more disappointed when i learnt that none of the lumber yard or big home improvement store would cut the lumber at my desired angle or as they call it "precision cut" :rant:. I was about to give up on this idea but then i decided to ask my colleague for help. He readily agreed to help me out and i was back in the business again :grin


Started searching for a local lumber yard in Houston for the best prices & service and went there to get the required items for my project. It was unbelievably fast service and i really enjoyed my first visit to Grogan Building Supply (in and out under 20 minutes :dude:). I asked them to cut the 2" x 6" x 12 footer to cut in 2 pieces so i could carry it in my car. They did it without raising any eyebrows or charging me a dime.


However i made a mistake of getting the 8 footer cut in 2 pieces of 49" + 47" assuming that i will get 7 pieces of 7" bracing to fit in perfectly but boy i was wrong. After 6 pieces, the last bracing fell short of 0.5 inch so please be careful about that and get it 51" + 45" instead.


After getting the wood in my car, i drove to my colleague's house and was amazed by the amount of tools he had in his garage. Let's just say that he doesn't rather he can't park his car inside his garage because it's like a wood workshop with every possible tool. He makes his own furniture so that explains everything.


He did that inclined cut and i was happily on my way to do the assembly on my living room's coffee table from IKEA. I put together everything on the table according to my drawing and then had the clamps in place to hold that arrangement so that i could mark the places i wanted to drill holes at.


I tried putting screws with and without pre-drill and realized that it was much easier to have the pre-drill hole in place. After 2 hours, everything looked as i had drawn up and i was very happy to see a product that i envisioned.

I went outside to test it immediately and was so happy to see that it worked perfectly. Left the car on ramps for 30 mins to see if it will do something to it or not. The ramps pass the test with flying colors and here i am sharing my joy with you all :grin


Summary:

2" x 6" x 12' x 2 No. cut into 6' sections.
2" x 6" x 8' x 1 No. cut into 51" + 45" sections.
2.5" screws x 1 lb. box
5 sheet ply ~ 10" x 19" x 2 No. from a 2' x 4' section

Total Cost ~ $20.34 excluding the plywood.
Total Weight of both ramps ~ 50 lb.
Total Height ~ 7.5 inch
Clearance from ground to bottom of oil pan ~ 16"

I am going to add a stopper piece on each ramp along a handle to lift it up. Hope this help someone looking to build wooden car ramps :smile

Cheers :salue:


Disclaimer: The ramp design is not approved by OSHA, ASTM, ASCE, ASME or any other institution/organization. Please use it on your own risk.
 

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This is great, thanks!

One reason why I haven't done oil changes myself, is I only have car jacks to lift up the car, which are annoying to setup, and I don't quite trust the plastic RhinoRamps. This looks safer than those IMO.
 

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Car so nice, bought twice
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This is great, thanks!

One reason why I haven't done oil changes myself, is I only have car jacks to lift up the car, which are annoying to setup, and I don't quite trust the plastic RhinoRamps. This looks safer than those IMO.
Personally I trust RhinoRamps more than something homemade. You know those things are tested to probably way beyond their 10000 lb rating because the company would get sued into oblivion if it collapsed and kill someone.


What would be interesting though is a homemade full-length car lift. Drive up 3 feet into the air and be able to do stuff like dropping the tranny or subfram. Probably pretty tricky to design something stable at that height.
 

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2005 Honda Accord LX, I4
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Discussion Starter #5
Personally I trust RhinoRamps more than something homemade. You know those things are tested to probably way beyond their 10000 lb rating because the company would get sued into oblivion if it collapsed and kill someone.


What would be interesting though is a homemade full-length car lift. Drive up 3 feet into the air and be able to do stuff like dropping the tranny or subfram. Probably pretty tricky to design something stable at that height.
Not saying that Rhino Ramps are not good but the quality of today's ramp is definitely not the same as it was 10 years ago which is what a lots of folks have here in DA. During my search i came across so many pictures of them collapsing that i was not comfortable putting my car up on them so that's why the wooden ramps and i had taken a wood design class a while ago so i knew how strong the wood is if used properly.

Btw i have read in one of the other forum ... don't remember if mustang or toyota forum where one guy got killed coz Rhino Ramps collapsed on him which scared the crap out of me. When i checked out the ramps at several auto stores, i didn't feel comfortable with the build quality. It seemed flimsy and not very strong.

You can search on mustang & corvette forum and people have done what you've mentioned about higher lifts.
 

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This is great, thanks!

One reason why I haven't done oil changes myself, is I only have car jacks to lift up the car, which are annoying to setup, and I don't quite trust the plastic RhinoRamps. This looks safer than those IMO.
Believe it or not, Rhino Ramps are well made. I had a HD pair for my GMC Sierra 1500 SLT. She weighed over 2 1/2 tons. They never once cracked or even shifted. Mind you, I drove the truck up on them and left it there for an hour before going under. And I rarely ever needed to use them as the truck was quite high to begin with. Boy do I miss my toys. But I've got colleges to pay for now.
 

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for a full car lift, can't you make 2 more and put them in front of the rear wheels then drive up on it?? Just a thought lol. @chills4u what saw did your colleague use to cut the incline? was it a chop saw or a table saw? I have all the tools i need I'm just hoping i can do the incline by myself
 

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Hello Fellow Accordians :wave:

1. 2" x 10" stacked to create step structure
2. 2" x 12" stacked to create step structure
3. 2" x 6" inclined ramp at 13 degrees
4. 2" x 6" stacked in both longitudinal & lateral directions
5. 2" x 4" inclined ramp at 13 degrees
6. 2" x 4" stacked in both longitudinal & lateral directions
Beautiful work! I got the idea for #2 in your list from odyclub and have been using that. It is quite a challenge to get my 5 mt up the steps on the ramp though. I made the steps kinda small though, with barely enough room to stop on each step.
 

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2005 Honda Accord LX, I4
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Beautiful work! I got the idea for #2 in your list from odyclub and have been using that. It is quite a challenge to get my 5 mt up the steps on the ramp though. I made the steps kinda small though, with barely enough room to stop on each step.
Thanks! Yeah, i saw couple of them with step structure too and seemed like a longer version was needed which i was not willing to make since the goal was to make them economical both cost & weight wise. This worked out to be the best option among them in my analysis.
 

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Not saying that Rhino Ramps are not good but the quality of today's ramp is definitely not the same as it was 10 years ago which is what a lots of folks have here in DA. During my search i came across so many pictures of them collapsing that i was not comfortable putting my car up on them so that's why the wooden ramps and i had taken a wood design class a while ago so i knew how strong the wood is if used properly.

Btw i have read in one of the other forum ... don't remember if mustang or toyota forum where one guy got killed coz Rhino Ramps collapsed on him which scared the crap out of me. When i checked out the ramps at several auto stores, i didn't feel comfortable with the build quality. It seemed flimsy and not very strong.

You can search on mustang & corvette forum and people have done what you've mentioned about higher lifts.
This is what I saw too when shopping around earlier. I know they're supposed to be tested for safety but solid wood just seems safer to me than the plastic that these are made out of.
 

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Car so nice, bought twice
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for a full car lift, can't you make 2 more and put them in front of the rear wheels then drive up on it?? Just a thought lol. @chills4u what saw did your colleague use to cut the incline? was it a chop saw or a table saw? I have all the tools i need I'm just hoping i can do the incline by myself
No because there's no way to fit ramps under the car in front of the rear wheels.
 

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I like it! I built a set of ramps recently too, albeit a simpler design than yours (similar to these). Have used them for an oil change and an ATF fluid change so far, and it's faster than jacking the car up and putting in jack stands.



As others have said, I'd recommend attaching a "stopper" piece at the end of the top level so that you don't overshoot the end.

For handles, I recommend getting a set of door handles. I used something like this: http://www.homedepot.com/p/Everbilt-5-3-4-in-Black-Door-Pull-15449/202033978
 

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@Amar: He used Band Saw for the inclined cuts.
sweet, that means I'm all good to go, if i don't butcher it and end up setting it on fire, ill post pics of my end result

No because there's no way to fit ramps under the car in front of the rear wheels.
ya i didn't really think it through lol :grin the full car lift seems like a lot of work, plus the only times I'm gonna have a car up like that, id think id want to be in my grandfathers shop, not in my driveway with my car up like that, its a good idea but not for me
 

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2005 Honda Accord LX, I4
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Discussion Starter #19
I like it! I built a set of ramps recently too, albeit a simpler design than yours (similar to these). Have used them for an oil change and an ATF fluid change so far, and it's faster than jacking the car up and putting in jack stands.



As others have said, I'd recommend attaching a "stopper" piece at the end of the top level so that you don't overshoot the end.

For handles, I recommend getting a set of door handles. I used something like this: 5-3/4 in. Black Door Pull-15449 - The Home Depot
It's funny that this was one of the first pic on google that i saw while searching for ramp design :thumbsup:

I thought of doing this initially but wanted to have something light weight. Yours is rock solid :thmsup:

Yes, i am putting that wood stopper tonight and using a hole saw to make a handle in ramp itself.
 

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Yeah that design is way simpler ^^
 
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