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Shopping for a motorcycle lift - Thoughts?


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I'm a few days from coming into a bit of extra garage space. With this space comes the oppertunity to get a motorcycle lift. I hit 50 this year. Instead of hurting for 2-3 days after performing a 6 or 12K service on the bike, I've decided to bite the bullet and get a lift.


I did the preliminary google search and also searched this site for pervious threads. My google search overhwelmed me and my inability to run this search tool well caused me to come up short for threads on this site.




What do I want in a lift?


I want high lift capacity. I love the older Gold Wings and might again some day have something that heavy. I'm not sure I will need the extra side extenstions, but I am going to get them, and store them in case I ever do. I will probably cut a hole in the garage floor to recess it for easier use of the floor for other things. I know I will need a wheel chock for the front wheel of some sort to lock it in while working. I may need the ability to add a center lift.


Other than that, I probably don't even know what I don't know. :)


Anyone have any thoughts on what else I should add to my list? Any Brands that stand out? I would love some recommendations on how to channel this search.



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Hi Shawn, glad to hear that you'll be getting out of the townhouse. I agree with John, the Handy Lift is the best. That is the brand the I have used at the tech days that you have attended. It is a little pricey but if you don't need one right away you may find a used one close by. You will want one with the Cycle Vise.

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I bought a Titan lift about six years ago, defiantly money well spent. Wanted to buy American and though about the Handy lift but just couldn't justify the additional cost. The Titan was about $1000 shipped to a local freight company. I had the freight company load it onto my utility trailer and after assembling it in the driveway, pushed it in to the garage. I use it for the motorcycles and as a work bench and its never missed a beat. Here is the LINK





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Afternoon Shawn


I second the Handy lift-- I have had one for a long time now (think I paid $400.00 for it years ago)--they are a lot more expensive now.


I usually keep the side extensions on mine (they do cost extra though) as that allows me to easily ride heavy motorcycles up on the lift & put my feet down when I am on the lift. The side extensions also allow a direct ride up of 4-wheelers & lawn tractors for service.


The secret to finding a deal on the handy lift is to look for motorcycle dealers that are going out of business.


If you shop by phone or internet watch the shipping as those devils are very heavy.


I made a little double wheel affair on a long Tee handle that quickly clips into the non wheel end of the Handy lift. I just clip that thing in & I can quickly & easily move the Handy Lift anywhere in my shop (or even roll it outside).

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I have had a lift for 15 years, so much to say, not sure I will remember it all.


I actually have a cheap harbor freight unit. It works awesome and I paid 275.00 total for it. Just watch for coupons and I think you can still get them for 325.00 even now.


Not sure how big a deal it is, but I have used the rear tire slide out feature on mine. Not saying it is necessary just that I have used it.


I do not use the side rails, it actually puts me to far away from the bike and it affects my lower back. Again just something that I notice may not be for everyone


When I am working on the bike I do sit in a chair a lot of the time. I have a very small no arm computer chair. So making sure the lift will adjust to multiple heights is necessary. Most all lifts do now, just a reminder.


I had a chance to buy a handy lift awhile back. Sort of wish I had pulled the trigger. But overall I am amazed at how well the Harbor freight lift works. If you have any mechanical ability at all, the only "failure" item on the lift is the hydraulic jack. There are lots of You Tube Videos on how to repair the hydraulic portion of the harbor freight lift. Of course on the 1K units a rebuild will most likely not be necessary.


If cost is a concern I would not rule out the harbor freight unit. If you can afford it, then as noted above Titan gets good reviews and of course any good used Handy lift is the first choice.

Edited by randy
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I'm a fan of the Harbor Freight lift with an upgraded wheel chock. It works well at a reasonable cost. Mine is used only a few times a year, so I store it on end, strapped to the wall, to save floor space.


But Shawn wants to install his lift flush with the floor, and the HF controls are under the deck, where they would be inaccessible. I think he needs to look at air or electric lifts with controls that can be operated from above.

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