OldCars nails it. That is exactly what I am thinking. I want a floor jack that has little statistical odds of simply letting the car settle down while you are putting in the jack stands, as is reported on many cheaper jacks. And, hopefully will give service for considerable time, since I expect it to go to my heirs (or fastest neighbor.)
I do like the idea of Whitey's jack, small and light enough to carry with me, for emergency use on the highway. I do not like the scissors jack very much. As he says, they are very slow. And, they are definitely not highly stable nor safe. So, a low quality floor jack is not a bad option for changing tires. But, it is not in the category for working on a vehicle. And, based on reviews, I am not even sure they are safe for changing tires on the highway. But, in over 50 years of driving, I have never had a scissors or bumper jack let the car down without warning.
But. I do not know about 2 - 3 weeks pay. I make more than that, heh, heh. I have not yet shopped for a floor jack, except two days ago. I had to go back to Tehuacan, and walked over to Autozone to buy a car syringe. AZ floor jacks were Duralast and maxxed out around $130. I am thinking in the $200-300 price range, not the $1000 price range. I am going to look for the brand DB recommended in McAllen when I go back to renew my d/l in March. I might go a big higher, but not over $1000.
I do not consider myself the Great White Savior as too many North Americans do in Mexico. But, as a retired Senior Electronics tech and diagnostician, there are some things I can and do teach them.
House wiring in rural Mexico has been a pair of light gray wires, no identification of current or return. I had them wire my house using US wire codes, and discovered later Mexico has its own color code, but out here in the boonies no one ever heard of such a thing. I bought most, not all, of the devices at Home Depot in McAllen and imported them, so I have very close to American quality wiring. The cousin has learned the importance of grounded devices, and preserving polarity. He even asked me for a GFI (ground fault interruptor) for his kitchen when he re -wired his house to make it safer.
When we started out, we had around 40 volts on our ground wire, and the other one was over 160 volts. Now we have 126 and 0 volts.
I also loaned them my Stihl 210 chain saw and after some months, the son in Chicago sent them money to buy their own. And, I taught them basic techniques to fix problems when it failed. Now, they are better at it than I am.
In general these are clever people albeit with minimal resources. But when they see a better way within their resources, they adapt very fast. And, that is what I hope to accomplish with a good floor jack, a safer way to work on their cars. With me supplying the long-term resources. One each floor jack of quality good enough to be shared by all. Thanks