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Thread: HMC Industries SL-3086 Motorcycle Lift Review

  1. #1
    Registered User drneo66's Avatar
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    HMC Industries SL-3086 Motorcycle Lift Review

    From my early days as a broke collaege student, I have always done my own motorcycle maintenance. After my '82 Honda GL500I needed a big overhaul, I purchased a Harbor Freight motorcycle jack, and that jack served me well for almost 14 years. After we moved to a bigger house (garage) I started looking for an actual motorcycle lift to make my life easier.

    After spending probably 10 hours (no joke) looking at various manufacturers and models on the world wide web, I decided that a SL-3086 motorcycle lift from HMC Industries was the one I was going to buy. Yes, I could have spent a lot less on a lift from Harbor Freight (HF), or bought an almost-equivalent Handy brand lift, but I had several reasons for getting what I did.

    1. HMC (like Handy) has a lifetime warranty their products. I’m on the younger end of the motorcycle-owners spectrum, so I wanted something that could last ~60-70 years
    2. I was looking for something that didn’t have additional “legs” that would stick out when the lift was raised (a fault of some manufacturers)
    3. I wanted an air operated lift, as I’ve heard horror stories of ~2 liters of oil magically appearing on a garage floor after an oil-filled jack failed
    4. The maximum height of the HMC lift that I purchased is quite a bit taller than others (40 inches vs. 36 for Handy and 29.5 for HF)
    5. When the lift is all the way down, it sits low enough (7.5 inches) that I can drive my car over it, so I don’t have to worry so much about storage
    6. They are made in Marshalltown, Iowa, so not too far down the road of where I live
    7. I didn’t want to do a bunch of modifications before I could actually use the lift (cough cough, Harbor Freight)
    8. The HMC lift is rated to 1200lbs – that’s between 200 and 300 more than most other lifts (not that I would ever need to lift 1200lbs, but it’s nice to have things overbuilt)
    9. Not all lifts have a rear drop out, which seems to make tire changes easier
    10. I have the option of adding extensions on both sides to allow for more working room, or a side car
    11. HMC states that this air cylinder is easily rebuilt by any local hydraulic shop (or they will also send you a rebuild kit) if it's ever needed

    I went back and forth between what type of apparatus (chock or clamp) I should use for the front wheel. In the end, I went with the Condor wheel chock. I’m glad I went with this, as it allows me to roll the bike up by myself without having to tie it down right away. This chock also features that ability to remove the front portion, allowing the front tire to roll right out.

    Assembly was pretty easy as I just needed to mount the Condor wheel chock and the front tie down eyelets. I ended up adding another set of eyelets for the rear of the lift ($10 on Amazon), so I can tie down the rear of the bike and easily pul the front tire.

    The air supply hose is made out of "Flexzilla" brand whip hose, so even though I've pinched it a bunch of times so far, it seems to work great.

    I've owned the lift for about 6 months, and so far it's been a good investment. It easily handled a driveshaft changeout on my RT and regular maintenance on several other motorcycles.




    A good amount of safety stops available






    Rear wheel dropout (bike isn't perfectly centered, my learning curve)






    Last edited by drneo66; 09-27-2019 at 01:17 PM.
    Current: 2007 BMW R1200RT, 2013 F800GS
    Former: 1995 BMW K75S, 2009 BMW G650GS
    MOA Member #:150400, IBA#: 37558

  2. #2
    got, got, got no time... rguy's Avatar
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    Thanks for the report. It looks like it works great!
    Neal - '16 R1200GS / '81 R65
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