best way to lift front end - Kawasaki Versys Forum
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post #1 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-18-2012, 12:22 AM Thread Starter
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best way to lift front end

I need to get my front wheel off but don't want to buy an expensive pit bull stand if I don't have to since I'd only use this once or twice a year. Are there any other alternatives? I've read about jacking under the muffler but am afraid this will damage the muffler with the small pressure point my car jack would create.
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post #2 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-18-2012, 12:28 AM
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No real need to buy an expensive pit bull stand. Try your local Cycle Gear if you have one near you. If not, go online. I have seen specials for both the front and rear for less than $100.

Just a thought
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post #3 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-18-2012, 12:37 AM
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Homemade jack

I made a "stiff" jack out of the bottom of a crutch. I got the idea from a thread on this forum. You could search that thread and there are several pics of the method. I jack the bike with the crutch tied to my SWMotech crash bar on the right side. I rock the bike to the left and it comes to rest on three points, the jack, the sidestand and the rear wheel. Not the most desirable way to do it but it can work to remove the wheel. I would rather have the stand and do intend to buy one someday. Probably as soon as "my ship comes in".
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post #4 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-18-2012, 01:07 AM
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$$$ or safety is a question you need to answer. best way to have the bike secured for any work will be a proper stand . saves you, the bike and your pocket.

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post #5 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-18-2012, 02:57 AM
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I use the car jack under the exhaust pipe method. Same concern on the tiny surface area of contact, so I use an old cut out rubber inner tube, fold many times over and place it between the pipes and jack.

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post #6 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-18-2012, 05:22 AM
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$$$ or safety is a question you need to answer. best way to have the bike secured for any work will be a proper stand . saves you, the bike and your pocket.

+1. You don't have to buy a pit bull, but get a front stand. If your bike falls off of a contraption, you will be in far worse shape than paying for a front stand.

Many here have bought T-Rex Stands and have been quite pleased!
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post #7 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-18-2012, 05:37 AM
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If you get a front stand you have to have a decent back stand first to make the bike stable
100 bucks for the front from T-Rex, about 40 for the rear from harbor freight.
The price of the stands compared to the cost of replacing the bike or an er visit made it an easy choice for me
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post #8 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-18-2012, 05:56 AM
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this is the link to the front "trackside" stand at CycleGear, 45 bucks.

On this page is the rear one. Also 45.

They aren't the best quality in the world but they work, no issues. With usage so easy, you'll find times like simply cleaning the wheels, changing oil, changing headlight bulb, lubing the chain, anything you install, etc etc etc.

Have had them for months now and wouldn't be without them. And YES! u absolutely have to have a rear one, can't use a front alone, bike will fall over. In case u didn't know.
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post #9 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-18-2012, 08:22 AM
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+1 on the $45 Trackside stand. I only bought the front one as I had a different rear stand already. The front stand works well on the Versys forks.


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post #10 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-18-2012, 03:10 PM Thread Starter
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I've decided to buy a cheap head lift stand based on your input. Thanks.
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post #11 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-19-2012, 08:15 AM
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I just found a screw stuck in my front tire when I got to work! I've got over 5,000 miles on the OEM tires, and they're about done anyway. There's a Michelin PR2 sitting at home if that durned screw will just stay where it is 'til I get there. . . .

I'm going to have to deal with this issue very shortly. Rest assured my solution will involve red-neck engineering!

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post #12 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-19-2012, 08:27 AM
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I just found a screw stuck in my front tire when I got to work! I've got over 5,000 miles on the OEM tires, and they're about done anyway. There's a Michelin PR2 sitting at home if that durned screw will just stay where it is 'til I get there. . . .

I'm going to have to deal with this issue very shortly. Rest assured my solution will involve red-neck engineering!

GDI
I just put on Michelin PR3s last night (with the help of a friend that has all the stuff)... My OEM Dunlops were looking quite weird...
They only have 5200 miles on them but it was time... and the new tires are part of the prep for a long July tour.

We had the bike up on proper front and rear stands and it was solid as a rock.

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post #13 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-19-2012, 08:38 AM
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Bought a cheap stand and welded short 2 short bolts at the end to hook the botton of the front forks.

Left it 2 weeks like that waiting for the wheels to come back (wheels were bent).

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post #14 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-20-2012, 09:20 AM
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Well, I got home with the screw in place:




Here's the little sucker:




Here, I'm setting the rear on the jack-stands. Somebody posted this idea last week, so I thought that I'd give it a try. I believe the jack-stands worked very well for the back end of the bike--very stable. I used a piece of Schedule 40, 3/4" black iron pipe, 3' long as the bar.




Unfortunately, the jackstands aren't the best for changing out the front tire. I bought them to use while balancing newly-mounted tires. Naturally, I couldn't use them for that purpose with the motorcycle sitting on them! When it came time to install the front wheel back on the motorcycle, I found out that my Harbor Freight stands aren't tall enough--even in their highest position--to give me any support. And, the front-end is heavier anyway, so the stands aren't going to be able to lift the front without some other method of changing the balance.

So, I had to lift from the steering head anyway. . . .




For my purposes the "cherry picker"--style engine hoist is much more versatile than motorcycle stands. I s'pose others may not have the room to store an engine hoist or as many uses for one as I have found, though.

GDI
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post #15 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-20-2012, 09:33 AM
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For my purposes the "cherry picker"--style engine hoist is much more versatile than motorcycle stands. I s'pose others may not have the room to store an engine hoist or as many uses for one as I have found, though.
I have a set of front and rear stands and I can lift my rear in about 10 seconds (no removing covers) and the front in another 15-20 seconds. I can have the entire bike in the air in under a minute including dragging out my stands.

To each his own, but I feel the proper stands are more stable and much faster than what you are doing.

Whatever works!
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post #16 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-20-2012, 09:38 AM
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Let me see you lift that mill in the background with those bike stands of yers!

GDI
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post #17 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-20-2012, 11:04 AM
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Crude but works. And enduro stand will lift front or back for a tire change as well:
http://www.endurostar.com I carry one on the husky, but works for the versys too.


BTW, get yourself a Stop-n-Go tire plugger kit. You should have one for the road anyway. $7 from amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Tire-Plugger-Kit-Replacement-Plugs/dp/B006D9508Y
That way you wouldn't have had to worry about the screw, or could have fixed it enroute if it leaked down.

Also, any tire works better than the stock bull**** tires. 5K miles?? Geez, just put something new on there, you'll be so much happier.

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post #18 of 32 (permalink) Old 07-02-2012, 09:35 PM
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CJ, what points do you use on the Versys to support it when lifting the front tire or rear tire?

Chris
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post #19 of 32 (permalink) Old 07-02-2012, 09:54 PM
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CJ, what points do you use on the Versys to support it when lifting the front tire or rear tire?
You know, I don't remember, but I think was under the water pump area.
I never ran my bike with the lower plastic fairings, and now I've reinstalled them to sell the bike. Covers up all the good support points.

For the rear, under the footrest bracket.

Bike is in the fleamarket.

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post #20 of 32 (permalink) Old 07-03-2012, 07:53 AM
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Do you have crash bars on the bike??? I used two bottle jacks to lift the front up just enough to get the wheel off using the crash bars as lift points. I put the back on a cheap swing arm stand. If the bike is going to be up in the air for a while I use GDI's method and hoist it with an engine hoist...those things have so many uses

In a pinch I have also used the loader on my tractor....

" I don't care about shinny chrome or loud exhaust, I don't ride to be seen, I ride because I want to disappear"

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