Positioning LT in lift vise - BMW Luxury Touring Community
 
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post #1 of 28 Old Oct 28th, 2006, 6:34 pm Thread Starter
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Question Positioning LT in lift vise

I just bought a Western Motorcycle lift. I've never used one, and there are no use instructions with the lift. My questions are:
Is it more stable to put the bike on the center stand (see photo)?
or
Is is more stable to strap the bike to the lift with the front wheel all the forward?
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post #2 of 28 Old Oct 28th, 2006, 7:13 pm
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Thats a scarey lookin setup you've got there.I always run the bike all the way forward so the clamp is on the front of the tire to keep it from tipping.if you need to ,get Western's jack to jack it up on the center stand.I usally strap the bike to the lift if I'm gonna be torqueing (sp)anything.I think you have the Orange County Choppers procedure there.They had bikes falling off lifts left and right on T.V. for a while.

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post #3 of 28 Old Oct 28th, 2006, 7:14 pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jgburns
I just bought a Western Motorcycle lift. I've never used one, and there are no use instructions with the lift. My questions are:
Is it more stable to put the bike on the center stand (see photo)?
or
Is is more stable to strap the bike to the lift with the front wheel all the forward?
John, your pic is Ed Zachery how I put Toad on my lift. Always on the centerstand and with the front wheel vise tightened on the *tire* only - not touching the wheel rim. Surely a tie-down strap on either side somewhere wouldn't hurt, but I never have used 'em. Some folks wouldn't work on their bikes without straps, however. YMMV. Enjoy your new lift.
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post #4 of 28 Old Oct 28th, 2006, 7:25 pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jgburns
I just bought a Western Motorcycle lift. I've never used one, and there are no use instructions with the lift. My questions are:
Is it more stable to put the bike on the center stand (see photo)?
or
Is is more stable to strap the bike to the lift with the front wheel all the forward?
My $0.02: those clamps are great for smaller bikes, but I wouldn't trust one with my LT, as I don't believe it would be effective if the bike started tipping. FWIW, I removed the clamp from my Handy lift shortly after it arrived.

Mark Neblett
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post #5 of 28 Old Oct 28th, 2006, 7:43 pm
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I aint knocking your lift,but the Handy clamp looks kinda weenie compared to the clamp that Western makes.Just sayin'

Jeff Bokusky

Shoreview ,Mn.

2001 K1200LT ---
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1948 Harley EL 88 c.i.
1985 kawasaki KX250
1993 honda XR 200--
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post #6 of 28 Old Oct 28th, 2006, 7:57 pm Thread Starter
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Question Say again

Quote:
Originally Posted by ChiefMn
Thats a scarey lookin setup you've got there.I always run the bike all the way forward so the clamp is on the front of the tire to keep it from tipping.if you need to ,get Western's jack to jack it up on the center stand.I usally strap the bike to the lift if I'm gonna be torqueing (sp)anything.I think you have the Orange County Choppers procedure there.They had bikes falling off lifts left and right on T.V. for a while.
This probably sounds stupid to you, but I just don't get it.

How does one get both the front wheel all the way forward and put it on the center stand? I bought the Western Jack, but I don't see how that would help. Please be more descriptive.

Regards,
John
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post #7 of 28 Old Oct 28th, 2006, 8:11 pm
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Just Use The Tie Downs!

Looking at the picture, this bike should be tied down (as per LT instructions) on the front end for sure! If this bike ever tips while on the lift , one of two things will happen. 1) The bike is seriously damaged...that's for sure! 2) Someone could get seriously injured or killed.

There is NO WAY I would trust the wheel vise to hold this bike by itself. If the bike tips, the vise will NOT hold it and CRASH!!! It takes only 3-5 minutes max to tie it down and then and only then is it safe.

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post #8 of 28 Old Oct 28th, 2006, 9:13 pm Thread Starter
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The clamp looks like it meant to stabilize

Quote:
Originally Posted by mneblett
My $0.02: those clamps are great for smaller bikes, but I wouldn't trust one with my LT, as I don't believe it would be effective if the bike started tipping. FWIW, I removed the clamp from my Handy lift shortly after it arrived.
... the bike -- keep it from rocking if it gets bumped. That's if the tire was all the way forward.

Regards,
John
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post #9 of 28 Old Oct 28th, 2006, 9:18 pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChiefMn
I aint knocking your lift,but the Handy clamp looks kinda weenie compared to the clamp that Western makes.Just sayin'
No offense taken -- but ya probably need to take a closer look at the Handy unit -- the Western unit is the same clamp as mine (nearly -- mine's painted grey ). The lift is essentially identical, too -- down to the curved-ramp and roller arrangement of the lift tracks. I'd give better than even money that they are built under the same roof. Bottom line, I wouldn't trust either clamp

One suggestion for anyone considering these units -- give serious consideration to buying the extension for the front end and dumping the clamp. The extra length allows the bike to be centered on the lift and not have the rear wheel partially hanging over the end of the lift when put on the centerstand.

Another thought -- no bike ever rises off the ground on my lift without tie-downs between the frame and the lift deck for stability -- period.

Yet another thought -- For non-electric centerstands, a 7" tall (height of two 2x4s), 18"x18" platform, topped with plywood, will allow you to stand next to the bike at the same level, making deployment of the centerstand *much* easier.

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post #10 of 28 Old Oct 28th, 2006, 10:01 pm
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I just ride the LT forward, then let Ernie tighten the clamp. After all, it is his lift. We haven't used tie downs for minor work (running wires), but always use them if we're doing anything that may push the bike around (shocks, swingarm removal, etc.).

The front extension does help to center the bike, and sometimes you can remove the front wheel stop and get it a bit further forward before using the center stand. But I'd still prefer to have a helper there, just in case.

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post #11 of 28 Old Oct 28th, 2006, 10:20 pm Thread Starter
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I'd take that bet

Quote:
Originally Posted by mneblett
...The lift is essentially identical, too -- down to the curved-ramp and roller arrangement of the lift tracks. I'd give better than even money that they are built under the same roof...
The Handy is made in America according the company rep, the Western was build in China as a Handy knock-off. However, the Handy is 24" wide and the Western is 30" wide (enable ride up with a place to put the feet).

Regards,
John
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post #12 of 28 Old Oct 29th, 2006, 1:47 am
 
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I just received and set up the Handy with the 8" side extensions. Definiately wide enough now to support my feet while loading.
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post #13 of 28 Old Oct 29th, 2006, 1:52 am
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jgburns
The Handy is made in America according the company rep, the Western was build in China as a Handy knock-off. However, the Handy is 24" wide and the Western is 30" wide (enable ride up with a place to put the feet).
Well, all I can say is that I bought mine directly from Handy and if the Western is a knock-off and built in China, mine came out of the same factory!
Somebodies pulling somebodies leg! The Western in the picture here and my Handy are identical right down to the red wheel clamp with black plastic end caps.
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post #14 of 28 Old Oct 29th, 2006, 6:55 am
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Don't take chances!

I've been using a Silver bike lift that came with a vise; which I took off. It doesn't do anything. Forget the vise which is useless, and strap the bike on all four corners. Don't take any chances with anything, and you won't have any problems.
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post #15 of 28 Old Oct 29th, 2006, 7:01 am
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well.there's your problem.You have the red clamp and I have the gray one. Actually, the picture of the Handy clamp I googled looked like it was made out of U shaped stock and looked like it would flex while mine is made out of square stock.If you have end caps it probably is the same as mine.my mistake

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1985 kawasaki KX250
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post #16 of 28 Old Oct 29th, 2006, 7:22 am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jgburns
This probably sounds stupid to you, but I just don't get it.

How does one get both the front wheel all the way forward and put it on the center stand? I bought the Western Jack, but I don't see how that would help. Please be more descriptive.
haven't tried it with my LT yet ,but you would put the front wheel in the clamp and position the jack so the center stand will clear it .Jack up bike,lower center stand, lower jack so bike is on center stand.Like I said,I haven't tried it with my LT yet so there may not be a place to jack and still lower the center stand.When I use this method with my HD's I use a couple of chunks of 4X4 for a stand which is more stable than the jack.
I may be a nervous nellie, but I always figured itis easier to secure a bike than try and get it off me or repair it.

Jeff Bokusky

Shoreview ,Mn.

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1948 Harley EL 88 c.i.
1985 kawasaki KX250
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post #17 of 28 Old Oct 29th, 2006, 9:55 am Thread Starter
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Here's an alternative to jacking it up ... maybe

Quote:
Originally Posted by ChiefMn
haven't tried it with my LT yet ,but you would put the front wheel in the clamp and position the jack so the center stand will clear it .Jack up bike,lower center stand, lower jack so bike is on center stand.Like I said,I haven't tried it with my LT yet so there may not be a place to jack and still lower the center stand.When I use this method with my HD's I use a couple of chunks of 4X4 for a stand which is more stable than the jack.
I may be a nervous nellie, but I always figured itis easier to secure a bike than try and get it off me or repair it.
I wouldn't feel safe doing what you suggest by myself. Check the photo out below, it's a photo from a Handy Lift review -- notice the vice is installed further back than where I bolted mine down. I'm going to move mine back, bolt a 2X6 stop on the front of the lift, open the vise, pull the bike to the stop, put it on the center stand, and then close the vice. I'll let you know how it goes.

The review is at http://www.webbikeworld.com/motorcycle-table-lift/

For all those freaking out about lack of tie-downs, I will use them when I actually work on the bike --- this was just a test and photo op to ask the original question.
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post #18 of 28 Old Oct 29th, 2006, 10:27 am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jgburns
I wouldn't feel safe doing what you suggest by myself. Check the photo out below, it's a photo from a Handy Lift review -- notice the vice is installed further back than where I bolted mine down. I'm going to move mine back, bolt a 2X6 stop on the front of the lift, open the vise, pull the bike to the stop, put it on the center stand, and then close the vice. I'll let you know how it goes.

The review is at http://www.webbikeworld.com/motorcycle-table-lift/

For all those freaking out about lack of tie-downs, I will use them when I actually work on the bike --- this was just a test and photo op to ask the original question.

yep,that outta work.The only point I was trying to make was clamping only on the bottom of the tire really isn't doing much.Wouldn't want to see any one get hurt

Jeff Bokusky

Shoreview ,Mn.

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1948 Harley EL 88 c.i.
1985 kawasaki KX250
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post #19 of 28 Old Oct 29th, 2006, 11:08 am
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I've been considering a lift for a while,
like many others I would like the best value for what I actually need it for.
After reading these posts and the other one regarding the Harbor Freight lift, I have to ask,
what in your opinion makes the Handy or Western lift worth twice the price of the Harbor Freight one?


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post #20 of 28 Old Oct 29th, 2006, 11:32 am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SilverBuffalo
I've been considering a lift for a while,
like many others I would like the best value for what I actually need it for.
After reading these posts and the other one regarding the Harbor Freight lift, I have to ask,
what in your opinion makes the Handy or Western lift worth twice the price of the Harbor Freight one?
Hey, Hans - I don't gotta comparison note 'tween the three lifts, butt .... I've yet to go into a dealership work area and see anythang other than a Handi-Lift. Some are really old and well worn, butt they're still goin strong and the techs swear by 'em. When I bought mine, I inquired of four dealerships just in my 'hood - 2 BMWs, one Honda, and one HD. All had Handi-Lifts. Works for me, and I've had it for nearly 7 years - love it. Long as I have a bike, I'll have a lift.
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post #21 of 28 Old Oct 29th, 2006, 4:51 pm Thread Starter
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Thumbs up Got it fixed

I moved the wheel vise back. When I pulled the LT on the lift, with my wife watching the front end, the fork hit the vise at the same time the wheel hit the tire stop (I used a cinder block). Perfect. Here's a photo.
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post #22 of 28 Old Oct 29th, 2006, 5:07 pm Thread Starter
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Handy vs. Western vs. Harbor Freight Lift

Quote:
Originally Posted by SilverBuffalo
I've been considering a lift for a while,
like many others I would like the best value for what I actually need it for.
After reading these posts and the other one regarding the Harbor Freight lift, I have to ask,
what in your opinion makes the Handy or Western lift worth twice the price of the Harbor Freight one?
According the Handy site, their's is made in the USA (Iowa). However, you might want to visit the factory before spending an a few hundred dollars more than the Western.

The Western is a Handy knock-off, but thirty inches wide (I'm comfortable riding up without side extensions). Both the Western and Handy have more heft (the extra weight is good when the bike is 30" off the floor). Also, notice both of these lifts have seven locking postions (don't trust the pnuematic cylinder while working on the bike). Harbor Freight has two lifts, foot pump in the store -- go look at it. And, a foot pump/air-driven one mail order.

I decided against Harbor Frieght because it is not as heavy, has only one locking position, and a local rider had problems with the seals. He said if he could do it over he WOULD NOT BUY THE HARBOR FREIGHT LIFT. That was good enough for me to spend the extra $280 to get the Western lift (shipping and tax consideration included).

The deciding factor between the Western and Handy was that Sandia BMW has Western lifts. I thought it was good enough after looking at one in use. With the sissor jack, wheel vise (included), and shipping, the total for the Western was $823. BTW, the Handy would have been about $1100 for the SAM lift (same accessories and 24" width instead of 30").

Regards,
John
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post #23 of 28 Old Oct 30th, 2006, 11:55 am
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[QUOTE=jgburns]This probably sounds stupid to you, but I just don't get it.

How does one get both the front wheel all the way forward and put it on the center stand?
First roll bike foreword then put up on the center stand. Once on center stand slide the bike foreword. Here are pictures with my LT up on the lift last winter .My handy lift is the electric lift ,the lift is very smooth and controlled compared to the air lift. I am not knocking the air lift.
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post #24 of 28 Old Oct 30th, 2006, 12:01 pm
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Put a spacer bolt (longer bolt and a spacer sleeve) between the wheel stop and the vise. Roll the wheel all the way to the stop passing the vise a bit. When you put the bike on the stand, the wheel will be centered in the vise.



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post #25 of 28 Old Oct 30th, 2006, 1:25 pm
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Bike lift points - slight hijack

Where are the acceptable lift/jack points on the bike documented? Several mentions in this thread about lifting the bike and some pictures of the bike supported on jack stands and wood. Is there any documentation on the acceptable areas that support the full weight of the bike. I have the owners manual, shop manual and the Clymer. I have looked through them but maybe not thoroughly enough. I've only owned a bike for a short time. Most of my wrench experience is on cages. I'm used to supporting the frame and getting rid of the wheels very early in the process of most procedures. Thanks.

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post #26 of 28 Old Oct 30th, 2006, 2:30 pm
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As far as I have seen and read there are none. If you ever go into a BMW shop to see work that would require a center jack, you will see the back of the bike suspended from the ceiling, never ever on a center jack. YMMV.

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post #27 of 28 Old Oct 30th, 2006, 5:36 pm Thread Starter
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Tie down points

Quote:
Originally Posted by dglenn1
Where are the acceptable lift/jack points on the bike documented? Several mentions in this thread about lifting the bike and some pictures of the bike supported on jack stands and wood. Is there any documentation on the acceptable areas that support the full weight of the bike. I have the owners manual, shop manual and the Clymer. I have looked through them but maybe not thoroughly enough. I've only owned a bike for a short time. Most of my wrench experience is on cages. I'm used to supporting the frame and getting rid of the wheels very early in the process of most procedures. Thanks.
I have the same manuals and couldn't find instructions either. However, I chose the frame up front, the centerstand lift handle on the left side middle, and the right passenger foot peg (temporarily to change the gear oil--it's in the way when attached the frame under the Pannier).

Regarding remarks in this thread about the wheel vise not having value: I respectully disagree! After putting the lift down, I carefully attempted to rock the bike with all the straps on. It was solid. Then I removed the front strap and tried it again. Still very solid. I did not try it with all the straps off, but the front end was not budging a bit without the front straps.

Regards,
John
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post #28 of 28 Old Oct 30th, 2006, 5:40 pm Thread Starter
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Don't need to slide it

[QUOTE=murray]
Quote:
Originally Posted by jgburns
This probably sounds stupid to you, but I just don't get it.

How does one get both the front wheel all the way forward and put it on the center stand?
First roll bike foreword then put up on the center stand. Once on center stand slide the bike foreword. Here are pictures with my LT up on the lift last winter .My handy lift is the electric lift ,the lift is very smooth and controlled compared to the air lift. I am not knocking the air lift.
I didn't see your post until after moving the wheel vise back. With the angled wheel stop removed I nudge the bike forward until the fork contacts the wheel vise. Then I put it on the center stand. The wheel is lined up perfectly with the vise.

Regards,
John
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2000 K1200 LTC - Canyon Red
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