Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Product Review: RhinoRamps by FloTool

Crawling under a slightly lowered C3 is nearly impossible unless you're ultra thin. But even if you were, it would be of little benefit as there's no room to do anything under the car if you were able to squeeze your body under it. I weigh in at a buck seventy, so I'm not heavy by any stretch of the imagination, and can barely get my head and one arm under my Corvette when it's flat on the ground.

A floor jack is one of those must-have tools for the do-it-yourselfer mechanic, but if you're going to crawl under a vehicle, you will also need jack stands, which means you will spend time looking for stuff and then setting it up. So that's where car ramps prove their worth. You set them up, roll your car onto them, do whatever it is you're trying to get accomplished, and when you're done you simply roll your car off. Done!

Above: Product number 11909ABMI.
Most ramps tend to be a bit on the high side for sports cars, so I did not really consider them for my Corvette until I saw a set of RhinoRamps by FloTool advertised on Amazon. They seemed they would work fine since they were designed for wide tire width, low-clearance vehicles, according to the manufacturer.

For $29.98 they were more than reasonable and as an Amazon Prime customer, I would have them in my hands in two days. Best of all, if—for whatever reason—I did not like them or if they didn't work as advertised, I would be able to return them.

I did get them delivered early Sunday morning (thanks, Amazon and U.S. Post Office), and immediately put them to good use.

Now, to be clear, my garage setup will most likely differ from yours, so this product review is based on my garage layout as well as my 1976 Corvette. Of course, since you're reading my blog (and I thank you for that), chances are you also own a C3 Corvette, so that's not the problem. My caveat has to do with how I secured the ramps as I rolled my car onto them.

Most garages will not have a conveniently located ledge or step up as mine does. My garage is longer than average and includes the laundry room at the very back. So I used the ledge to act as a stop for the ramps, which means I did not test them to see if they would slide away as you roll the vehicle onto them. That may be a test I perform in the future, but not this time around.

Above: RhinoRamps are nicely made and light so they are easy to handle.
Once the ramps were butted securely against the ledge and aligned with the front wheels of the car, I slowly drove the car onto them, carefully listening for any scraping noises. None occurred and the car stopped its forward motion once the tires reached the ramp stops.

Above: The ledge separating the garage area from the laundry room provided the perfect stop for the ramps.

Above: The height of the ledge is perfect so the ramps stay firmly in place.
After the car was up on the ramps, I left it in gear, engaged the emergency brake, and chocked one of the rear wheels. I have two solid rubber wheel chocks which add an extra layer of safety when used on concrete and/or painted floors like mine. In a pinch, a 2x4 scrap or even a brick will do the job, but I don't trust those on a slick surface.

Above: No scraping as the car is rolled onto the ramps. Not sure if that'll be the case
if I ever add a front Pace Car spoiler.

Above: At 12 inches RhinoRamps are the perfect width for my 235/60/15 tires.

Above: Good wheel chocks are inexpensive must-haves for do-it-yourselfers.
I allowed my Corvette to cool down for a few minutes since I needed to work in close proximity to one of the exhaust pipes, but once I got under the car I was able to get the work done safely and (somewhat) in comfort.

Above: RhinoRamps are stackable which makes them easier to store.

Above: Thanks to their small footprint, ramps can be stored out of the way in a corner of the shop.
According to the FloTool, these ramps can hold vehicles up to 12,000 lbs. so they are strong enough for the average C3 Corvette. They certainly performed well in my case without any signs of buckling under pressure, so I consider them a great buy and I'm keeping them. They sure will come in handy next time I need to crawl under my Vette.

So if you're looking for car ramps for your C3, give RhinoRamps by FloTool a try. I think you'll be pleased with them. They are available from Amazon, Advance Auto, Walmart, The Home Depot, and Tractor Supply, to mention a few. Retail prices, of course, vary.

And something worth noting, these ramps are Made in the U.S.A!

Thanks for following my 1976 Corvette blog!


Product Links... (#sponsored)

• Rhino Ramps by FloTool
Wheel Chocks

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