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Hydraulic lift system Hydraulic, mechanical and electrical components of the lift system
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Old 11-20-2020, 06:45 PM   #1
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Default Cutting cables and Lifting Top Permanently

Hi all,

This forum is such a great resource so far, I thought Iíd throw this out there to see if anyone had any ideas/advice.

We recently bought some property in the high desert (outside Joshua Tree in CA) and it came with a 1968 HiLo. The trailer is in very good shape for its age, but unfortunately I can not get the top to lift more than just a few inches. Iíve tried a few of the tips I have read about on here but Iím fairly certain the cables are just too old and rusted to work.

The good news is we donít ever plan on taking it anywhere as itís a perfect guest ďhouseĒ and a place for us to stay while we build our house on the lot. So my question: is there a way to cut all the cables and jack up the top and then place 2x4s to permanently keep it up? If possible, would it require two Jackís on either side? Or more to the point, how the heck would I do this?

Thanks so much for you time in answering I really appreciate it. Itís such a great vintage camper Iíd hate to not be able to use it.
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Old 11-20-2020, 11:56 PM   #2
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I don't think rusted cables would stop the top from lifting, but they COULD break. In the high desert, I doubt they'd be rusted either.

I suspect you have a leaking manual lowering valve, which is simply returning the hydraulic fluid to the reservoir as pressure builds. It could also be dirt in the regular lowering valve, which is keeping it open a bit. You COULD, of course have leaking seals in the system, which would give the same symptoms.

If you want to jack it up, I think you'll need FOUR farm jacks and I think you'll have to start them on the ground, getting the top up high enough to place the jacks between the top and the outriggers. You'll need a length of 2x4 to support each side as you remove and replace the jack. Then, I think the farm jacks will have enough lift to get the top the rest of the way up. You can find farm jacks at Harbor Freight.

I don't think you have to remove the cables to do this either.

What I've told you is how I'd approach this problem and I may have it wrong, since I've never done it. Someone with experience will hopefully come on and correct any mistakes I've made.

- Jack
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Old 11-30-2020, 03:23 PM   #3
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There is no need to cut the cables...you will just have to pull the slack out of them under the unit....I just (3 days ago) had a cable break on my 2807C and had to do a manual (jack) raise of the top...If you only have one or two jacks, you can do each corner a couple of inches at a time and progress until top is up....time consuming yes but only one jack is needed....I used a floor jack with a 2x4 vertical to facilitate the lift....you will need various lengths of 2x4 to support as you go up...my finals were 30" long and I put them on the trailer supports for when the unit is lowered...If you do not have these supports, just ensure you support to main frame front and rear...4 points total.
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Old 11-30-2020, 03:56 PM   #4
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Thank you Brian - glad you're with us! I BET using just one or two jacks is a tedious process!

There's another way to get the top up that doesn't involve jacks or strong neighbors either. It involves using the tongue jack to alternately tip the front and the rear of the trailer and then placing 2x4s under the "high end" to hold it while you reverse the tilt, putting new 2x4s under the new high side. Repeat. You'd also need more 2x4s between the outriggers and the top to support the resulting lift in each new tilt. Again, VERY tedious, but do-able. I imagine you could use fewer lengths of 2x4s and support them with various concrete blocks to increase the lift too, until you get the top high enough to put the final 30" lengths between the top and the outriggers.

Somebody posed a thread using this "McGiver" method several years back. I think they used it to get the top OFF of the bottom half.

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Old 12-01-2020, 10:28 PM   #5
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Thank you so much this is very helpful!
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Old 12-01-2020, 10:30 PM   #6
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Default Thank you!

Thank you everyone for replying-I think I am going to crowdsource all of the ideas and give it a try on Friday. I'll let you know how it goes and post some pictures.
All the best,
Bryan
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Old 12-01-2020, 10:41 PM   #7
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Default Pictures of the 68í top down

These are the ďbefore picturesĒ!
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Old 12-04-2020, 08:46 PM   #8
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yep screw out the knob on the pump, in for down, out for up you should feel the pressure.

that's a real cool rig and its parked where we all want ours parked don't make a no lo.. but its yours and costly to really fix up but 1968's are starting to fall apart and yours is solid and the most desirable in my opinion dual axels, windows all around, wing profile, all the trim is there and the rock guard.
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