Front Tire Change Using a Car Ramp - Stromtrooper Forum : Suzuki V-Strom Motorcycle Forums
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post #1 of 22 Old 03-16-2011, 06:53 PM Thread Starter
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Front Tire Change Using a Car Ramp

I changed the my tires (OEM Trailwings to Battlewings) this past weekend after one last ride to Bike Week and encountered some unique issues compared to my earlier bikes. The biggest challenge was the front tire, as I don't have a center stand or motorcycle lift. I tried laying the bike on its side, but the wheel wasn't off the ground. I thought about tilting the bike further back to get the front wheel to lift but abandoned that idea as I could envision my handlebars driving into the sand.

I looked around the garage for something that could work, and eventually settled on a car ramp. My concept was to position the ramp under the left side of the engine as I laid the bike down. The handlebars wouldn't have to be cocked, and when settled, the bike would be parallel to the ground, about 8 inches up. It would also be easier to pick up the bike after the tire change.

It worked well enough that I thought to share the idea. I added some towels to prevent paint damage. I also removed the shift lever just so I had extra room as I laid the bike over. I didn't want all that weight to be on the shift lever. The lever can be swung out of the way after removing a single c-clip. Lastly, I did remove the calipers and hung them out of the way, but you can likely leave them in place. I did the job by myself, and re-installing the wheel without having to worry about rotor to caliper alignment was easier for me.

I suggest loosening the pinch bolts to at least break the axle free prior to laying the bike over. You can probably loosen the axle when it's on its side, but why damage the end caps, grips, etc. if you don't have to. I've attached a single picture to give you an idea of what I'm talking about.
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File Type: jpg Front Tire Change Without A Jack.jpg (89.0 KB, 227 views)
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post #2 of 22 Old 03-16-2011, 07:10 PM
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Be aware laying the bike on its side, especially the left side, is likely to allow oil to migrate through the breather tubes into the air box.

Pat- 2007 DL650A was ridden to all 48 contiguous states. I didn't quite make it to 17,000 miles on the 2012 DL650A.
Nicknames I use to lessen typing, Vee = 2002-2012 DL1000s. Vee2=2014-2016 DL1000s. Wee = 2004-2011 DL650s. Glee = 2012-2016 DL650s
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post #3 of 22 Old 03-16-2011, 07:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DFFECHSWU View Post
I did remove the calipers and hung them out of the way, but you can likely leave them in place.
Typically, you only need to remove one caliper on the front wheel, (I only have experience with a non-ABS version of a DL-650).

I remove the right caliper because I am standing there removing the axle from that side as well. I leave the left caliper in place when I am changing tires.

Heed Greywolf's advice!

B.L.

2007 DL-650 (I gave away in 2012 with 111,000 + miles)
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post #4 of 22 Old 03-16-2011, 07:29 PM
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I like to take off both calipers. They are only two bolts each. I find it much easier to put a caliper on a wheel than a wheel on a caliper. Getting the speedo sensor and ABS pickup in place before getting the axle on is enough fun without having to get the rotor into floppy brake pads.

Pat- 2007 DL650A was ridden to all 48 contiguous states. I didn't quite make it to 17,000 miles on the 2012 DL650A.
Nicknames I use to lessen typing, Vee = 2002-2012 DL1000s. Vee2=2014-2016 DL1000s. Wee = 2004-2011 DL650s. Glee = 2012-2016 DL650s
See https://www.stromtrooper.com/general-...nicknames.html

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post #5 of 22 Old 03-16-2011, 08:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by greywolf View Post
I like to take off both calipers. They are only two bolts each. I find it much easier to put a caliper on a wheel than a wheel on a caliper. Getting the speedo sensor and ABS pickup in place before getting the axle on is enough fun without having to get the rotor into floppy brake pads.
My bike is a little "different" then yours. Right caliper is all that I need to remove.

2007 DL-650 (I gave away in 2012 with 111,000 + miles)
"A word grows to a thought; a thought to an idea; an idea to an act. All the pieces are put together, and the whole is yours."
1942, Beryl Markham: "West With the Night"
"You can talk about doing a thing until everyone finally talks you out of it, or you can actually do the thing"
James Baldwin "Across Islands and Oceans"
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post #6 of 22 Old 03-16-2011, 10:12 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
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Be aware laying the bike on its side, especially the left side, is likely to allow oil to migrate through the breather tubes into the air box.
Thanks for that information. It definitely wasn't something I considered. I thought of gas and oil spillage onto the ground but not back into the airbox. It's definitely a kluge setup and one that I won't likely use in the next tire change mostly because I plan to have a motorcycle jack by that time.

Anyway, I just checked the airbox and all was OK. The box, filter and coarse breather foam were dry. Thanks again.
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post #7 of 22 Old 03-16-2011, 10:49 PM
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My bike is a little "different"
Understatement of the year award. :mrgreen:
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post #8 of 22 Old 03-17-2011, 09:52 AM
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I was kinda surprised the air box was dry given how many zero mph drops oiled them. I guess a couple of factors were different. One is the bike went to horizontal but not past it. I think the biggie though is the engine here was not running.

Pat- 2007 DL650A was ridden to all 48 contiguous states. I didn't quite make it to 17,000 miles on the 2012 DL650A.
Nicknames I use to lessen typing, Vee = 2002-2012 DL1000s. Vee2=2014-2016 DL1000s. Wee = 2004-2011 DL650s. Glee = 2012-2016 DL650s
See https://www.stromtrooper.com/general-...nicknames.html

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post #9 of 22 Old 03-17-2011, 08:03 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
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I was kinda surprised the air box was dry given how many zero mph drops oiled them. I guess a couple of factors were different. One is the bike went to horizontal but not past it. I think the biggie though is the engine here was not running.
Yeah, I thought about this some more today and the angle definitely came to mind. I would think the location of the breather vent (more to the right side of the chassis) would almost by default prevent this from happening. Laid over on its left side, the breather is still pretty high in relation to the oil. I would think there would be more of an issue if it were laid over on the right side. Either way, I was probably just lucky with this time. Good point about a running engine ... that would erase all bets regardless of what side it was laid down on.
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post #10 of 22 Old 03-17-2011, 08:17 PM
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On the left side, any oil in the hose would go downhill into the airbox. Drop a bike with a running engine and that probably happens. right side drop would have to go uphill through the hose.

Pat- 2007 DL650A was ridden to all 48 contiguous states. I didn't quite make it to 17,000 miles on the 2012 DL650A.
Nicknames I use to lessen typing, Vee = 2002-2012 DL1000s. Vee2=2014-2016 DL1000s. Wee = 2004-2011 DL650s. Glee = 2012-2016 DL650s
See https://www.stromtrooper.com/general-...nicknames.html

Please vote in the poll on what Strom(s) you have at https://www.stromtrooper.com/informat...-you-have.html
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