Car ramp - What screw size? - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
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post #1 of 25 Old 07-06-2018, 08:51 AM Thread Starter
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Car ramp - What screw size?

Hi
For a car ramp like this

I found this about the length of screws:
"The length of the wood screws should be 1/8-inch less than the total thickness of the wood being joined."

Is 1/8 inch less than the total thickness of the wood correct?

What screw gauge/diameter should be used?

How many screws per unit area should be used?

Thanks a lot

Last edited by mechaniker; 07-06-2018 at 11:06 AM.
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post #2 of 25 Old 07-06-2018, 09:14 AM
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Originally Posted by mechaniker View Post
Hi
For a car ramp like this
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-JKndoat9qU

I found this about the length of screws:
"The length of the wood screws should be 1/8-inch less than the total thickness of the wood being joined."

Is 1/8 inch less than the total thickness of the wood correct?

Thanks a lot
Unable to do video but as long as the screw doesn't go all the way through the wood that is all that matters. The 1/8" sounds about right because screws tend to torque in where the head countersinks a little. If he doesn't say glue would be advisable. You get more strength from the glue than the screws.
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post #3 of 25 Old 07-06-2018, 09:35 AM
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In addition to what Steve said you could just screw the 4 corners of the top board - it the glue that will hold this together.

BTW RV accessory stores sell these in hard plastic that stack to different heights.

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post #4 of 25 Old 07-06-2018, 10:29 AM
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I would make the ramp a bit longer with a strip of wood on the top as a stop for the tires. I have a set of plastic ramps that have a raised place as a stop. Don't work on cars or change oil anymore. Health issues prevent me from getting down and up without dizzy spells. I do miss working on cars. Anyone remember the days that you changed points, plugs and condenser? Then you tweaked the distributor until it ran like you wanted.
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post #5 of 25 Old 07-06-2018, 10:34 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Steve Neul View Post
Unable to do video but as long as the screw doesn't go all the way through the wood that is all that matters. The 1/8" sounds about right because screws tend to torque in where the head countersinks a little. If he doesn't say glue would be advisable. You get more strength from the glue than the screws.
Thanks for replying
For two boards of 2 inch wood thickness (total thickness is 4 inch), I could not find screws with a length of 3-7/8 inch in the home depot

not even 3-3/4 inch.

Can 3-7/8 inch screws be found somewhere other than the home depot?

Last edited by mechaniker; 07-06-2018 at 10:48 AM.
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post #6 of 25 Old 07-06-2018, 10:43 AM Thread Starter
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In addition to what Steve said you could just screw the 4 corners of the top board - it the glue that will hold this together.

BTW RV accessory stores sell these in hard plastic that stack to different heights.

Thanks for replying
Screwing at the four corners will require very long screws, the height of the ramp, which can be 12 inches or more. As a result, the screws will be easier to break due to lateral forces, right?

I am from Oman. I do not think we have neither plastic or metal ramps on sale.
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post #7 of 25 Old 07-06-2018, 10:44 AM
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Originally Posted by Pineknot_86 View Post
I would make the ramp a bit longer with a strip of wood on the top as a stop for the tires. I have a set of plastic ramps that have a raised place as a stop. Don't work on cars or change oil anymore. Health issues prevent me from getting down and up without dizzy spells. I do miss working on cars. Anyone remember the days that you changed points, plugs and condenser? Then you tweaked the distributor until it ran like you wanted.
I agree with Pineknot, I'd make them a little longer and add a stop. Are you building these to use a bump so you can get your jack under the car?

I still work on all my vehicles, and have kept some old tools, in hopes that I will again one day have something to use them on...like this.
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post #8 of 25 Old 07-06-2018, 10:47 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Pineknot_86 View Post
I would make the ramp a bit longer with a strip of wood on the top as a stop for the tires. I have a set of plastic ramps that have a raised place as a stop. Don't work on cars or change oil anymore. Health issues prevent me from getting down and up without dizzy spells. I do miss working on cars. Anyone remember the days that you changed points, plugs and condenser? Then you tweaked the distributor until it ran like you wanted.

Thanks for replying

I would make the ramp a bit longer with a strip of wood on the top as a stop for the tires.

That is a good idea.
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post #9 of 25 Old 07-06-2018, 10:49 AM
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Thanks for replying
For two boards of 2 inch wood thickness (total thickness is 4 inch), I could not find screws with a length of 3-7/8 inch in the home depot

not even 3-3/4 inch.

Can 3-3/8 inch screws be found somewhere other than the home depot?
Unless you are using rough cut boards, 2" boards are only 1 1/2". I'd get a handful of 2 1/2" screws and call it good. You could probably get away with just a couple per board if you glue it. There wont be any lateral force to speak of.
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post #10 of 25 Old 07-06-2018, 10:52 AM Thread Starter
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I agree with Pineknot, I'd make them a little longer and add a stop. Are you building these to use a bump so you can get your jack under the car?

I still work on all my vehicles, and have kept some old tools, in hopes that I will again one day have something to use them on...like this.

Thanks for replying

Are you building these to use a bump so you can get your jack under the car?

I wanna make oil changes. Using the ramps will make a jack unnecessary.
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post #11 of 25 Old 07-06-2018, 11:02 AM Thread Starter
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Unless you are using rough cut boards, 2" boards are only 1 1/2". I'd get a handful of 2 1/2" screws and call it good. You could probably get away with just a couple per board if you glue it. There wont be any lateral force to speak of.

I think lateral forces will occur because the car acts with a horizontal force on the ramp while climbing, and the forces will try to slide the boards/steps away.
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post #12 of 25 Old 07-06-2018, 11:15 AM
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Thanks for replying

Are you building these to use a bump so you can get your jack under the car?

I wanna make oil changes. Using the ramps will make a jack unnecessary.
Depending on your car (and how high you want to go with it), I would be very careful about crawling under it with just the board ramps. Unless you are planning on using 2x12's, you are probably going to want it high enough that it will have a tendency to be unstable.

And in that case, you will have some lateral force, how much affect it will have will depend on how steep of an approach angle you make. But I still think a couple screws would be sufficient.

I have a set of metal ramps I'll give you.
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post #13 of 25 Old 07-06-2018, 11:28 AM Thread Starter
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Depending on your car (and how high you want to go with it), I would be very careful about crawling under it with just the board ramps. Unless you are planning on using 2x12's, you are probably going to want it high enough that it will have a tendency to be unstable.

And in that case, you will have some lateral force, how much affect it will have will depend on how steep of an approach angle you make. But I still think a couple screws would be sufficient.

I have a set of metal ramps I'll give you.


Unless you are planning on using 2x12's


The thickness will probably be 2 inches, and width will be 50% more than tire width.


you are probably going to want it high enough that it will have a tendency to be unstable.


You mean if the ramp is too high, the car will be unstable?
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post #14 of 25 Old 07-06-2018, 11:33 AM
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I agree with Pineknot, I'd make them a little longer and add a stop. Are you building these to use a bump so you can get your jack under the car?

I still work on all my vehicles, and have kept some old tools, in hopes that I will again one day have something to use them on...like this.
I got one of those in my tool box also. I guess I could use it to stump a youngster by asking him or her what it was used for.
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post #15 of 25 Old 07-06-2018, 11:35 AM
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Yes. For instance, if you make the ramps 12" wide and 12" high, it will have a greater tendency to tip as opposed to 12" wide and 6" high, especially if it isn't on a perfectly flat surface. Just something to think about as you're planning.
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post #16 of 25 Old 07-06-2018, 12:09 PM
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Thanks for replying
For two boards of 2 inch wood thickness (total thickness is 4 inch), I could not find screws with a length of 3-7/8 inch in the home depot

not even 3-3/4 inch.

Can 3-7/8 inch screws be found somewhere other than the home depot?
There are 3 1/2" screws available. The idea is to use as long a screw as you can without going through. Do you really have 4", usually 2x lumber is 1 1/2" thick where a 3" screw would be right at the threshold of going through. If the screw goes through slightly you could always take them back out and grind the point off the screws and put them back in.
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post #17 of 25 Old 07-06-2018, 01:30 PM Thread Starter
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There are 3 1/2" screws available. The idea is to use as long a screw as you can without going through. Do you really have 4", usually 2x lumber is 1 1/2" thick where a 3" screw would be right at the threshold of going through. If the screw goes through slightly you could always take them back out and grind the point off the screws and put them back in.

OK, thanks for saying that.
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post #18 of 25 Old 07-06-2018, 02:09 PM
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Unless you are planning on using 2x12's


The thickness will probably be 2 inches, and width will be 50% more than tire width.


you are probably going to want it high enough that it will have a tendency to be unstable.


You mean if the ramp is too high, the car will be unstable?

As I read what you wrote you are really not trying to make ramps in the traditional meaning of that term. You are only trying to use 2 or 3 pieces of 2x to raise the car high enough for a jack to fit underneath.


Yes? No?


George
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post #19 of 25 Old 07-06-2018, 04:01 PM Thread Starter
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As I read what you wrote you are really not trying to make ramps in the traditional meaning of that term. You are only trying to use 2 or 3 pieces of 2x to raise the car high enough for a jack to fit underneath.


Yes? No?


George

When I google the word ramp, the majority of photos are not the kind of ramp that I want. The photos are maybe the traditional meaning.

I wanna make the same ramp as in the video in the first post, which fits your description.
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post #20 of 25 Old 07-06-2018, 10:38 PM
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You don't have to drive a screw through all three boards, simply screw the two bottom ones together with shorter screws, then place the third board on top of those two and fasten it. I would make the top a bit longer as suggested with a stop, it is going to take the car a bit of effort to get up the ramp and it may be hard to not run right over it.
If you are using glue the screws are just basically holding the boards in place until the glue sets, heck Norm would just drive in a couple brads. ��

The screws should be long enough to enter at least 1/2 the thickness of the second board, longer the better as long as they don't protrude.

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Last edited by FrankC; 07-06-2018 at 10:48 PM.
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