DIY Motorcycle Lift

Maybe your chain broke during a road trip, you’ve misplaced your motorcycle stand, or you simply don’t have one. Regardless of the reason, you need to lift your motorcycle but don’t have access to the conventional method. This guide is intended to be a last resort. This method is reasonably safe but should only be used as a last resort.

Tools and Equipment

  • Car jack & socketDIY Motorcycle Lift - Materials
  • Jack stands
  • Ratchets/tie-downs
  • Sturdy wood

The Process

  1. Position your motorcycle under an overhead beam that is strong enough to support the bike – if you can’t find a beam, I have used a sturdy tree branch instead.
  2. Next, find a part of the bike’s frame to hook the tie downs too; depending what you’re working on, attach the tie downs either toward the front or back of the bike. Loop the tie-down’s other hook around the beam and hook it onto its own strap. Do again for the other side of the bike and ratchet the tie-downs until they’re tight but not fully holding the bike’s weight. Step back and make sure the bike is centered and the tie-downs are sharing the load equally.
  3. With the tie-downs taught, position the car jack under the bike’s pipes; carefully raise the jack until it begins to hold some of the bike’s weight. Tighten the tie-downs as the jack raises the bike in the air. The bike may rock back and forth and it’s useful to have a hand on the bike to keep it steady.
  4. Continue the process of raising the bike with the jack and tightening the tie-downs until you can safely place the jack stands under a part of the frame (typically around the swingarm).


With the jack stand(s) and tie-downs in place, you’re able to work on hard-to-access spots and perform maintenance on your bike. Once you’re finished, raise the jack until the jack stands can be removed and the ratchets are loose. Loosen the tension of the tie-downs and lower the bike’s side stand. Return the bike to its side stand by lowering the jack and loosening the tie-downs.

One Reply to “DIY Motorcycle Lift”

  1. […] Rear wheel stand or follow my DIY motorcycle lift tutorial […]

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