First bike surgery with the Harbor Frieght lift

My moving present to myself was a nice Harbor Freight motorcycle lift.  I'd heard good things about them on the Chain Gang website and, since I spin a wrench now and again, I decided to go for it.

Peter and I finally got it into position last night (it had previously been used as a crap table for the garage while we're getting everything moved in) and put the DRZ up onto it.  Yep, it's only taken me 2 months since we returned, but I'm finally going to do the cross-country trip repairs on the poor little Suzuki.


As you can see above, the lift works perfectly for the DRZ when the latter is up on the little dirtbike stand that I got at Cycle Gear (the XT will also use the stand; the Beemer has a centerstand).  I use two tie-downs to stabilize the bike onto the lift's two U-bolts. 

The front wheel is also stabilized by a vice-like chock — I wouldn't rely on the chock to hold the bike's weight (i.e. minus the tie-downs) but it does keep the wheel from turning.


If I were going to do anything that would really require torque (removing the front sprocket nut comes to mind), I'd get two more U-bolts and tie down the bike in four places.  The lift has holes for four U-bolts, but only two came in the package.

Removing the DRZ's rear wheel was really easy with the little trap door in the lift.  In the photo above, the lift is all the way down, but when I was working on the bike I had it up farther and the rear wheel just dropped nicely through the trapdoor (it gave Peter a scare, though, when a spacer fell and noisily jangled its way down through the metal lift…I think he thought the bike crashed over onto me).

Raising and lowering the lift is super-easy with foot pedals.  The foot pedals can also come off of the lift when you're not using them so that hypothetically uncoordinated people don't hypothetically jam their shins into them whenever said people are walking around the garage.  Hypothetically. 

My lift also has a hydraulic lift attachment, but I haven't used that yet.

One of the best parts about the lift is that it's also easy (read: possible) to move the bike around mid-maintenance.  I got partway done with the DRZ last night, lowered the lift and, with Peter's help, paralled-parked the lift back in a corner of the garage so that it's out of the way of getting the Beemer in and out.  *happy*

All in all, I'm thrilled to death with this lift.  You'll be seeing more photos of it in the future!

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