The day you bring home your first dirt bike is the day you realize that most bikes don’t have kickstands. So, you go with the easy option: You use the cheesy little triangle that the shop hopefully gave you, or lean it up against the garage wall. But a dirt bike stand is a far better solution (and it’s better for your bike, too!).
You should use a dirt bike stand whenever you’re not riding. A stand is useful for propping your bike up when making repairs, cleaning your bike, and just storing it in the garage. These stands can keep your bike from tipping over, great for getting both wheels off the ground, and they are a stable platform when performing routine maintenance.
Both rookie and professional dirt bike riders should be using a sturdy dirt bike stand to keep their bikes upright when not in use. So, keep reading to learn about what dirt bike stands are and why youneedone. Then, we’ll touch on some of the risks of not having a reliable stand for your bike!
What Is a Dirt Bike Stand?
Dirt bike stands are designed to keep your dirt bike upright and balanced while you’re not out on the track or currently riding. These stands are usually made of some form of durable aluminum or steel, oftentimes resembling a wide base stool, and prop the bike up from the chassis.
Putting your bike on the stand will keep your wheels elevated to avoid suspension and tire problems from long-term lack of use. A dirt bike stand also makes dirt bike maintenance much easier as it creates a raised, stable work area. Risk Racing’s A.T.S. Magnetic Standgoes above and beyond for this, which we will get into more later.
Dirt Bike Stands vs. Kickstands
Kickstands are rather generic for dirt bikes, but you won’t typically find them on a many these days. They’re usually made of metal and essentially connect the front of your swing arm to the ground. The angle created by the kickstand will keep your bike propped up with ease.
So, why don’t dirt bikes have kickstands?
The most obvious reason is that kickstands are easy to trigger unintentionally. Accidentally extending the kickstand while you’re mid-jump or even riding the smooth areas of the track can be extremely dangerous. Kickstands can also get caught on your pants or in high grass and lead to an accident.
Then, there’s the weight factor. Even though kickstands are very lightweight and small, they do still add a little bit of weight to your dirt bike. When it comes to your top speed and acceleration rate, you know that every ounce matters!
That’s exactly why dirt bike stands are the “go-to” storage method in the dirt bike world. While you can install a kickstand on your bike, there are much better options.
The Most Popular Types of Dirt Bike Stands
There are very few dirt bike stands that are “one size fits all.” For example, some dirt bike stands would make more sense if you were making repairs while others are more useful if you have a massive 450cc dirt bike.
Here’s a look at the more popular types of stands and what they’re for.
Triangle Stands: These act as a portable kickstand. Triangle stands are made of metal and are lodged into the axle of your back wheel, creating that same angle as a kickstand would. They’re easy to put on and remove and are incredibly cheap ($30 or less).
Fixed Stands: These dirt bike stands come at a standard height and are the quintessential stand seen down at the track. Fixed stands are meant to keep your bike balanced from the chassis and both wheels off of the ground for better suspension. However, almost all stands are not able to accommodate all bike chassis, which leads to either the front or rear wheel touching the ground. Very frustrating!
Lift Stands: These stands are designed to be adjustable in height, requiring less manpower to prop up your dirt bike than a fixed stand might. All you have to do is pump the lever and you can lift your bike off the ground from 10” to over 18”.
Hydraulic Stands: These are often called scissor jack lifts. To work this style of dirt bike stand, you just use the step lever to simply crank up how high your dirt bike is off of the ground. They can lift your bike over 3’ into the air, which is ideal for making DIY repairs.
Regardless of which style of dirt bike stand you ultimately choose, one thing’s for sure: You need to be using a stand if you don’t want to be constantly making repairs that could’ve been avoided in the first place.
A Solid Solution - The Risk Racing A.T.S. Magnetic Stand
Every dirt bike is different when it comes to its height, weight, and where it’s heaviest. So, you might find that using a fixed stand leaves your front wheel in the air while your back wheel rests on the ground (or vice versa). At that point, most of the features companies brag about when it comes to their stands are deemed useless.
The “A.T.S” in this model stands for “adjustable top stand.” Unlike other dirt bike stands out there, this stand allows you to adjust the height onone sidein order to account for any weight imbalance or chassis configurations on your dirt bike. No matter where your bike is heaviest or tilted, this stand will keep it level.
Yet, this stand takes the typical dirt bike stand a few steps further.
It also has magnets on both sides to help you keep nuts and bolts within arms reach and from getting lost as you're making repairs. The top of the stand also sports a massive drain hole so your dirt bike will never sit in its own leaked oil and a rubber exterior that’s gentle on your bike’s paint and metal frame.
Ready to see if this is the dirt bike stand that your garage needs? Then, check out this video reviewing how this stand works to see it in action.
When to Use a Dirt Bike Stand
You might be wondering when exactly it makes sense to use a dirt bike stand. Do you use it down at the track when you’re resting between races? Are stands only useful for storing your dirt bike in your garage? Is it ever okay to rest your bike on its side or lean it up against the wall in the garage? First, let’s go over when it’s most appropriate to use a dirt bike stand.
When Cleaning the Dirt Bike
It’s near-impossible to hit the track day in and day out and not expect your dirt bike to take a beating. By the end of a race on a muddy trackor just a weekend down on the trails, you should expect your dirt bike to be absolutely covered in dirt, mud, and grime.
It just comes with the territory.
And, if you’re like the rest of us, you take a little soap and the backyard hose to your dirt bike to give her a good cleaning. Fortunately, a dirt bike stand will make cleaning your dirt bike simple! Let’s go over how it can do that.
Cleaning Your Wheels
Cleaning your wheels is easier than ever when you have your wheels elevated off the ground with a dirt bike stand. If you’re using a high-powered hose, the pressure of the water will help the wheels to spin while you’re cleaning them. Most stands won’t allow both wheels to spin, but the A.T.S. Stand is designed for instances like this! This can save you the time and effort that comes with lifting your 200-pound bike and rotating the wheels to clean each and every spoke.
360 Degrees of Cleaning
Another benefit of using a stand during cleaning is that you essentially have 360-degree access to your bike. You can circle your bike with the hose and spray down each and every crevice that the dirt always seems to sneak into. And, since your bike is lifted off of the ground, this gives you the chance to spray down the hidden areas of the undercarriage as well.
When Making Major & Minor Repairs
There’s one thing that can be said for making DIY repairs to your dirt bike: It takes an extreme amount of focus to get the job doneright.That means your attention should be on removing the oil filter or removing the bolts on the axle, not holding up your 225-pound dirt bike as you work.
Not changing your dirt bike’s oilis a surefire way to burn out your engine mid-race, leave you hundreds of dollars poorer, and guarantee an embarrassing visit to the shop. The benefit of changing your own oil is that you don’t have to make the trek down to the shop or spend any extra money on labor.
A stand makes this whole process a heck of a lot easier.
The way you use your stand when making an oil change will be a bit different than the way you currently use your stand. Instead of resting the chassis on the stand, you’ll drag the dirt bike back a bit so that the stand is resting between the front wheel and the chassis. This will help to keep your dirt bike stable during the oil change while also giving you room to put your oil pan.
Then, you’ll unscrew the drain bolt, loosen the oil filter cap, replace the oil, and done!
Whether you’re looking to invest in high-end tires to ramp up your performance or just replace a busted tire, you’re going to want to use a stand when you do so. The A.T.S. Stand will help to keep both wheels off the ground. This greatly simplifies the process of removing the axle nuts and bolts, deflating the tire, and removing the inner tube. As if that wasn’t enough, the magnetic side panels allow you a place to put your bolts while not having to worry about kicking them under that dreaded toolbox.
Other Types of Repairs
In reality, a dirt bike stand can be useful for making repairs to your bike that require your dirt bike to be balanced and stable. With that said, here’s a look at the other types of repairs that a dirt bike stand can make a bit less overwhelming.
Air filter changes
Fork seal repairs
Just make sure you have a general idea of what you’re doing when you’re making DIY repairs. Though a stand will likely make the process a bit easier by keeping your bike balanced and upright, it doesn’t nullify any mistakes you might make along the way.
For Storage Purposes
Whenever you’re not down at the track and currently riding your bike, your dirt bike should be lifted onto a dirt bike stand. The major reason for this is that your dirt bike is heavy, some weighing in at over 250 pounds in total. That begins to take its toll on both the suspension and the tires of your dirt bike.
Avoiding Flat Spots on Tires
A key benefit of using a dirt bike stand is that it helps to prevent flat spots from developing on your tires. A flat spot will lead to an uneven ride, vibrations and shaking as you’re driving, and general tire stiffness. Flat spots in your dirt bike tires will generally clear up after your wheels get warmed up when you get back down to the track, but it’s an issue that’s entirely avoidable by keeping your wheels off the ground with a stand in the first place. Simply adjust the turnbuckles on the A.T.S. Stand to make sure both tires are lifted.
Staying Away From Suspension Problems
A dirt bike stand will also help to keep your suspension thriving and from experiencing wear and tear when you’re not at the track. This particularly impacts the front wheel and the fork, where the suspension mechanisms are located. Leaving your bike wheels-down on the ground for long periods of time will put excess pressure on the suspension. This can reduce your bike’s ability to take bumps and jumps, leading to a bumpy and even dangerous ride.
When to Use the Stand for Storage
There’s noneedto use a stand if you’re planning to get back on the bike in an hour or two. But, any time you plan to take a day or two of rest from riding, it’s a good idea to put your bike on the stand to avoid any of these storage issues.
The best part is that stands don’t take up any more room than your dirt bike already does. So, you can use your stand to hoist your dirt bike up in your garage, shed, or wherever you usually store your dirt bike.
With Risk Racing’s RR1 Ride-On Stand, it is perfect for any setting you can need it for. In the case for storage, the stand has a locking pin to ensure that your bike isn’t going anywhere, and neither is the stand.
How to Use a Dirt Bike Stand For Smaller or Shorter People
The concept of using a dirt bike stand sounds pretty simple at first. Then you remember just how heavy your dirt bike is and realize you’ve got quite the task ahead of you. If you’re wondering how to make this as easy as possible, follow these steps.
Quick Notes from Meggs Video Below:
How to lift a dirt bike onto a stand for short people
Put the stand right next to the center of the bike.
Grasp the front brake with your left hand so that the wheel doesn’t spin as you lift the bike.
With your right hand, grab the top of the front wheel and lift the front portion of the bike upward.
Walk the bike over to the stand so that the chassis rests on the base.
Adjust the placement on the stand so that both wheels are balanced and stable.
You might think that putting a bike on a stand is near impossible for somebody who’s on the smaller or shorter side. But, it’s actually not! So here’s the video where Meggs Brapp shows just how easy it is to lift a dirt bike onto a stand, no matter your size.
The Problems With Not Using a Dirt Bike Stand
It’s clear that a dirt bike stand can be very useful when it comes to cleaning, making repairs, and simply storing your dirt bike. But, it’s not just the benefits of using a stand that you need to know about. You also should learn about the possible risks of the other storage solutions: Leaning your dirt bike against the wall or lying it on its side on the floor. So, let’s see what that means.
The Bike Tipping Over
This point is in reference to leaning your bike up against a tree, a fence, or a garage wall every now and then. You know how it always seems to go: The wheels either slip on the floor, the handlebars turn just a little, or your bike isn’t as balanced as you thought it was. There’s no stopping your 225-pound dirt bike once it starts to tip.
So, why is this a problem? Let’s talk about a few reasons your dirt bike tipping over can be an absolute nightmare.
The first issue is that your heavy dirt bike falling against the concrete garage floor can cause some physical cosmetic damage. Depending on how hard the bike falls or what it falls on, you might end up with a cracked clutch or engine case. That’s a visit to the repair shop and the loss of money you didn't want to spend.
Damage to the Kill Switch
But, there’s one issue that even the most skilled riders have noticed after their bike fell to its side hard: It won’t start, no matter how many times you tried to kickstart the engine.
Even an accidental tip of your dirt bike can cause damage to your kill switch, an essential part of your bike that automatically turns off the engine after a crash. Damage to the kill switch is the beginning of a whole ordeal that you’ll never want to find yourself in again. You’ll have to investigate the spark plug, clean it up, dry it, and maybe even replace it entirely.
Scratching or Damaging the Bike
Not using a dirt bike stand and instead lying your bike on its side is just asking for your bike to get damaged in many cases. That’s especially the case if you’re lying your bike down on the concrete garage floor or on a rugged pick-up truck bed.
This will likely cause slight cosmetic problems.
Since dirt bikes are a bit heavy to lift up, you might end up dragging your bike against concrete or asphalt in the process. This can result in scrape marks on your bike’s paint or even severe damage to the metal construction. They won’t impact your bike’s ability to accelerate or take turns swiftly, but it might cause noticeable damage.
Leaking Battery Acid
All dirt bikes need batteries to run properly, but certain dirt bikes have something called a “lead-acid wet cell battery” installed. The word “wet” in the description essentially just means that the battery is infused with a fluid that keeps the battery functioning.
The problem is that lying your dirt bike on its side may cause this non-sealed battery to begin leaking the fluid through the air vent.
When this battery leaks, the fluid that flows out can be corrosive to the metal that your dirt bike is made out of. This can weaken the strength of your bike and literally burn through the metal that’s there. Then, there’s the obvious risk that this fluid is dangerous to humans when touched or inhaled, posing obvious health concerns.
Oil & Gas Leaks
Your bike should always be upright, even when you’re planning to strap it into your pick-up truck or Jeep and haul it down to the track. Lying your bike on its side is essentially guaranteeing that both oil and gas will leak out of the bike and onto your truck. There are a few problems that come along with this leakage.
Damaging Your Truck
The first, and most obvious, is that you now have oil and gas puddles wherever you decide to lay your bike down. Oil is near possible to rinse off with water and carries quite a pungent smell. And, there’s the issue that gasoline or fuel can be flammable, making this spillage a potential future fire hazard.
If your dirt bike didn’t need oil to run, then there wouldn’t be an entire mechanism dedicated to adding it to the engine. You might not even notice just how much oil has leaked out when you lie your bike down on its side until you hit the track. Riding with low oil (or none) can cause severe engine damage, ruin the engine’s ability to stay both cool and lubricated, and may even lead to an immediate engine shut-off.
Transporting Your Bike Without a Stand
Lock Your Bike Down Upright
Many rookies make the mistake of transporting their dirt bikes on their sides in the back of a pickup truck or in a jeep. This can be problematic when it comes to oil, gas, and battery leakages. But, there’s no way that your bike will stay stable on the stand in the bed of your truck as you hit the road.
The Risk Racing Lock-N-Load and Lock-N-Load Pro transport system is here to help with! Simply install the system, roll your bike into the trailer, truck bed or van, and lock the two arms down to the bike’s footpegs. You’re all set!
There are quite a few reasons that you should use a dirt bike stand. It makes it easy to clean your bike, make repairs, and store it without experiencing suspension or tire damage. But, what’s even more important would be the risks that come along withnotusing a dirt bike stand.
Not using a stand puts your bike at risk for falling over, experiencing cosmetic damage, leaking corrosive battery acid, and causing oil and gas to leak from the bike.