Thursday, August 25, 2016

Raising the Rig for Maintenance

As I age, it's getting a bit old now, the kneeling or the frequent laying on the garage floor to do maintenance on my motorcycles.

Note: Following method will NOT work for a two-wheeled motorcycle.  Don't do it.

I'd been researching motorcycle lifts, having seen how much easier it looks to be able to lift one's motorcycle to say about waist height so one need not stoop/bend/kneel to get at something on the motorcycle.

Searching on the online forums of SovietSteeds showed this prospect:

max lift height with this lift is 30 inches I believe

Was all set to buy the red motorcycle lift table from someone local but then when I realized how tall the unit is when folded up, the issue of where to store something that weights 300 lbs became a show-stopper.

This morning, I was planning on applying some muffler sealant on the reducer pipe I used to join the 2-into-one headers to the stock starboard side muffler, there were minor air leaks you see, causing popping noises on deceleration.

Before, I'd have to crawl around on the floor, getting all dirty even though wearing coveralls, and have limited work room while under the rig.

So I thought I'd try this:

The ramp stops, by the way, are positioned specifically to prevent the rig from rolling backwards or forwards.

Lift sequence was:

Front Wheel first, transmission is in gear of course.
Parking brake is also a good idea.

Pusher Wheel is next.

Last one up in the air, the sidecar wheel.

The almost 9 additional inches were quite nice while under the rig working on the exhaust reducer pipe, I was able to lay on my mechanics creeper in comfort and move about easily while on my back.

The additional height also puts the engine at a nice level to work on while seated on my rolling mechanics stool.
Hopefully, no more or at least much less kneeling!

Very stable too, I tried shaking the rig while it was up and no issues.

Scarlett is due an oil change in about 900 kilometers or so, and Fiona will be due an oil flush for the gearbox in less than 300 km so we'll see how this setup works then.

Note: for the litigious amongst you, I am not telling you to do your maintenance on your URAL or motorcycle this way.  It works for me for now.  Be safe and think things through.  Stuff happens!

The ramps are rated for 6000 lbs each and the jack stand is rated for 3 tons.  Well over the weight of the rig at 770 lbs dry.

Note: The ramps say they're not to be used to support one side of a vehicle like I am using them to do, so beware.

A view of the underside of Fiona, the '99 Patrol with the '84 Beemer engine:

Update: 28AUG16
Put Fiona up on the ramps this morning, it made the tasks of replacing the gearbox oil, checking fluids, and adjusting the clutch cable so much more comfortable!


RichardM said...

Very dramatic music in the video. I thought of using a motorcycle lift plus a block and tackle forn the sidecar since it really isn't that heavy. But like most things like that, it never really gets anywhere.

Most of the motorcycle lifts I've seen are low enough to park your car over.

redlegsrides said...

The red lift from HF in particular, comes to just over 8" folded down and with wheel chock removed. Martha's car has about 9" clearance. Too close for our comfort and besides, not sure we're keeping the car much longer than next Spring.

I'd have to create some kind of cradle for the tug's frame as a standard moto lift is too wide and would result in all the weight being supported by the muffers....not a good thing.