Harbor Freight racing jack shrink ray

Awwww. Look at tha widdle thing.

Awwww. Look at tha widdle thing.

The local Harbor Freight store was having a sale. Amongst other things, they had their aluminum racing jack for $55 (regularly $100). It was a really huge sale that I’m happy to have heard about. I walked out with a trunk full of stuff and a new jack to replace my 5 year old one.

Or so I thought.

I thought something was off when I could easily pick up the (very small) jack box with one hand and carry it around the store with me. It’s a light jack, but not that light. When I got home and opened the box, I found this little thing. Isn’t it cute? Like my jack had a puppy or something.

The little blue one says his dad can beat up your dad.

The little blue one says his dad can beat up your dad.

It’s at least 20% smaller than the original. Both are rated at 3000 lbs lifting capacity. Both are aluminum. Both were bought at Harbor Freight. The new one is 23 lbs. The old one is 39 lbs. The old one has a 3.5″ minimum height, the new one has a 3.125″ minimum lifting height.

Yes, the new jack is very small. It required a whole blog post.

Yes, the new jack is very small. It required a whole blog post.

A little research on the Harbor Freight website revealed that the new one is the “3000 lb lightweight aluminum racing jack” and my old one is a little closer to the “Rapid Pump® 3000 Lb. Capacity Lightweight Aluminum Racing Jack” and yet my old one is heavier than the current Rapid Pump model by a good 4 lbs. So…. who knows.

And why does all this matter? The little, new one doesn’t seem quite as capable as the bigger, old one. Both fit under Sharka after I drive up on a 2×4. Call me crazy, but I like a bigger jack. It feels a little more capable. It works a little better. Alas, I didn’t read up on the possibility of a new, tiny model and I got surprised when I opened it. On the plus side, the tiny one is way easier to fit in my trunk. It’ll make tire changes at autocrosses a little easier than the bigger one.

I guess the blue one can stay.

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  • Koich says:

    Isn’t there a difference with the total height of how much that jack can lift too? I bought one a while back too, took it home and then noticed how small it was….

  • revlimiter says:

    I think you’re right. The little jack can’t possibly go as high as the full sized one. I think the box said 18 inches?

  • Polprav says:

    Hello from Russia!
    Can I quote a post in your blog with the link to you?

  • XCLR8TN says:

    sell the lil one to me, looks like i could use it w/o 2x4s LOL!

  • revlimiter says:

    psssh. You’re lower than I am, Jess!

  • Tim Allen says:

    I have the little blue one and it has performed nicely for me for about 3 years now. I have changed the hydraulic fluid once or twice, but that’s it.

  • Troy says:

    Greetings from Canada,

    I have a jack that looks like your large aluminum jack. Do you happen to have a parts list for this jack as I need a seal kit for mine?
    Mine says it is a Speedway Racing Jack, I got at an automotive flea market about 7 years ago. Is was great until it started leaking oil bad.

    • Adam says:

      Sorry… I’ve not used my large jack for years for the same reason, it leaks and sloooowly lowers. No fun. And the parts list has been long gone for more than a decade I’d imagine.


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