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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Well, I didn't know so I gotta assume I'm not the only one.

I just want a small motorcycle lift for the several times a year when I need it.

Last month I picked up the Harbor Freight (HF) compact lift.
THIS ONE

It was kind of wobbly but I figured for the price I could make do with it if I was careful.
Then the piston on the jack started leaking so I said "enough" and returned it for a refund (they are good about that).

I'd been looking at other compact jacks since then.

Then yesterday I was back at HF and found out they have TWO styles of compact jacks ... the first one I purchased and
THIS OTHER ONE


It is MUCH "beefier" (is that a word? :roll: ).
It is wider
It is LOWER (4 and 1/2 vs 4 and 5/8s)
The rubber tracks are wider and longer
It has a return spring
It is box tube construction instead of angle iron construction
and, it's basically the same price (got it on sale for $52.00)

Rolled it right under the bike yesterday (it fits underneath without shimming and the preset was only set to "4") and it jacked right up
... VERY stable (well, at least compared to the first one I purchased).

On all the other HF motorcycle lift posts I never noticed there was more than one compact model available from Harbor Freight
... I hope this additional information is of use to others.

Dennis
 

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Spend the extra money and get a Pit Bull Motorcycle lift, you will be glad you did. I had a Larin lift, it's like the Craftsmen, but after getting the Pit Bull lift I gave the other one away. The Pit Bull is alot sturdier, and you can roll the bike around while the bike is on the lift. If you get the Pit Bull and you do not have a Tulsa Belly Pan, make sure you get the frame adapter from Pit Bull, there is no extra charge. www.pitbullmotorcyclelifts.com
 

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8)
Dennis,
I got mine from HF and it was the second one ya got, works like a champ but I've only had it up there 5-6 times in the 3 years. :wink: Great price for somethin' I use infrequently but have "just in case".
I do not have a garage for my Wing so the roll around on the jack thing ain't happenin' at my place, I sure wish I had built a garage years ago but I enjoyed workin' on my HD's out in the elements. :roll: :roll: :roll: :twisted:
 

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******* Dave said:
8)
Dennis,
I got mine from HF and it was the second one ya got, works like a champ but I've only had it up there 5-6 times in the 3 years. :wink: Great price for somethin' I use infrequently but have "just in case".
My experience exactly.

drvr02silver said:
Spend the extra money and get a Pit Bull Motorcycle lift, you will be glad you did.
I am pretty sure I wouldn't be glad I did. Obviously some have more disposable income than others. I am sure the pitbull lift is a better lift than my harbor freight lift, but 8-10 times better? Not for my purposes or my money.
 

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Kikker said:
I bought a Sears Craftsman lift while it was on sale for $59.00 but have not used it on my GL1800 yet. From what I can tell so far, it doesn't look like it will work very well.
I've been using a Sears Craftsman lift for a few years now. In fact, I've had it so long it was $89 when I bought it. Anyway, I use it regularly to lift up my Valkyrie. A couple oif times I've left the Valk on the lift for up to a few of weeks, with no noticable drooping. The bike regularly gets a trip up on the lift pretty-well every week, even just for cleaning or checking low-down stuff.

I wouldn't hesitate to buy another Sears lift.
 

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weengers said:
******* Dave said:
8)
Dennis,
I got mine from HF and it was the second one ya got, works like a champ but I've only had it up there 5-6 times in the 3 years. :wink: Great price for somethin' I use infrequently but have "just in case".
My experience exactly.

drvr02silver said:
Spend the extra money and get a Pit Bull Motorcycle lift, you will be glad you did.
I am pretty sure I wouldn't be glad I did. Obviously some have more disposable income than others. I am sure the pitbull lift is a better lift than my harbor freight lift, but 8-10 times better? Not for my purposes or my money.
Ditto what "weengers" said - The yellow one works just fine. I usually strap it down before working around it although it probably doesn't need them most of the time. On the other hand, if you are yanking on a bolt, I would NOT like the idea of catching my falling Wing on my body.

One of my friends has a Pit Bull and I have seen it being used. Yes, it is a very superior lift in high quality, heavy materials used, and rock solid stability. As others have stated, I could not justify the Pit Bull cost against the number of times I need to lift my bike, so I am very happy with the yellow Harbor Freight lift. YMMV

:sun1:
 

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I really wanted a Pit Bull lift, but finances prevented it.

I just received my yellow HF lift and have to say that it does the job. I watched Fred's videos about lift placement and gave her a try. Had no trouble lifting my 2006 GL1800 .

My only complaint is that I cannot get the lift to go up to the highest slot. There's only about 1 inch difference between the 3rd & 4th slots so no big deal, but seems to me that it ought to go all the way up.

I even tried it with no weight on the lift, still wouldn't go all the way up.

Anyone else experience this?
 

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...cannot get the lift to go up to the highest slot....I even tried it with no weight on the lift, still wouldn't go all the way up.

Anyone else experience this?
Same here, not a problem but I thought the same as you.
 

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jamcgowan said:
My only complaint is that I cannot get the lift to go up to the highest slot. There's only about 1 inch difference between the 3rd & 4th slots so no big deal, but seems to me that it ought to go all the way up.

I even tried it with no weight on the lift, still wouldn't go all the way up.

Anyone else experience this?
Can you screw out the top of the bottle jack to make it longer? It might be low with oil or needs to be bled.
 

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Red said:
Can you screw out the top of the bottle jack to make it longer? It might be low with oil or needs to be bled.
Doesn't screw out... probably needs oil, etc., but I just got it... brand new. Maybe this is "What I paid for" when I bought a "cheap" lift? :oops:

:eek:
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
jamcgowan said:
Maybe this is "What I paid for" when I bought a "cheap" lift?
QC seems to be the biggest bugaboo with HF stuff.
Fortunately the HF store where I live seems to realize that and will swap out or refund no questions asked.
I usually just go in and say "this one is broke, can I have a different one?"

My 3rd HF motorcycle jack works very well.

take it back and get another one if you purchased it from a local store.

Dennis
 

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BrianH said:
Kikker said:
I bought a Sears Craftsman lift while it was on sale for $59.00 but have not used it on my GL1800 yet. From what I can tell so far, it doesn't look like it will work very well.
I've been using a Sears Craftsman lift for a few years now. In fact, I've had it so long it was $89 when I bought it. Anyway, I use it regularly to lift up my Valkyrie. A couple oif times I've left the Valk on the lift for up to a few of weeks, with no noticable drooping. The bike regularly gets a trip up on the lift pretty-well every week, even just for cleaning or checking low-down stuff.

I wouldn't hesitate to buy another Sears lift.
My bike on the Sears lift





Granted, the pit bull is a better lift. If I was lifting wings every day I would have one. But for 2 or 3 times a year the sear's one has been working great for me. I didn't have the tie downs on in the pictures as I was just trying the lift to see how it would work out. When working on the bike I have the tie downs on which helps stabilize it.
 

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wingwing said:
jamcgowan said:
Maybe this is "What I paid for" when I bought a "cheap" lift?
QC seems to be the biggest bugaboo with HF stuff.
Fortunately the HF store where I live seems to realize that and will swap out or refund no questions asked.
I usually just go in and say "this one is broke, can I have a different one?"

My 3rd HF motorcycle jack works very well.

take it back and get another one if you purchased it from a local store.

Dennis
I purchased my lift online, but I have a store local to me. Maybe I can exchange it?
 

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Can anyone tell me if this is the fill port on this HF lift? See black horizontal screw on lower right of jack. If so, how exactly do you refill the jack?



TIA
 

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I have the one Sears sells for $169.00. It works good and is light wieght. I wish I would have got the Pit Bull. At Harbor Frieght you can buy a warranty that is full replacement for $20 or so .
 

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Agree with Hawk, for the 2-3 times a year the bike may get on it, will save my $$$. Yes the Pitbull is much better. My sears red will do. Like Fred H. approach with a simple scissor jack, half the time. Never trust the sears jack without a strape on it, just an incident waiting to happen.
 

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jamcgowan said:
Can anyone tell me if this is the fill port on this HF lift? See black horizontal screw on lower right of jack. If so, how exactly do you refill the jack?



TIA
BUMP
 

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Yes, I believe that is the jack hydraulic fluid (oil) fill port. It is at the right physical location. All the hydraulic fluid fill ports in bottle jacks that I have seen have a hexogonal female socket set screw or square male plug for access. If it is just plugging a hole and has no other obvious function, you are probably looking at the right point. I am currently at work on my lunch break so I cannot even go look at my lift to verify the point you are looking at in your picture.

The fluid level does not have to be down much to stop the jack from lifting beyond a certain point. It would not surprise me at all that they didn't fully fill the jack with enough fluid to get it to fully extend to its maximum limit. Heck, it could save them 1/10 of a cent per jack and you know how much profit that would give them Aisian manufacturers! :roll:

Position the jack so that the fill port is oriented up, even if you have to remove it from the rest of the lift. Remove the plug, add some fluid, and put it back together and see if that helps. If it helps but it is still not going fully up, then you will have to tear it down again and add some more fluid. Speaking of hydraulic fluid, there is a specific fluid that is used for this purpose. I believe it is readily available at most auto parts stores so you should have no problem getting your hands on some. It is the same as the hydraulic fluid used in farming tractors and construction equipment.

There should be some slight air pocket in the jack for it to work properly, so you CAN overfill it, but that is not very likely. Let everyone know how that works out so we can learn from your efforts. I am in the middle of servicing my bike on the lift so I cannot try it for myself right at this time.

Good luck.
 
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