Easy Wheeler Review
by "Burn" for webBikeWorld.com
See Also: Easy Wheeler II Review
The Easy Wheeler has to be one of the most over-the-top motorcycle accessories we've seen in a long time.
But hey -- when it comes to motorcycles, too much is never enough, right?
Any sport that craves 300mm wide cruiser tires, chromed swingarms, gold-plated chains and carbon fiber mudguards has plenty of room for one more outrageous accessory.
I've been thinking about how I might describe the Easy Wheeler but words fail me.
It's basically a motorcycle wheel roller; that is, a device that allows a motorcycle wheel to be rotated for cleaning or for chain maintenance.
You may have seen products like this before -- products like the Rollastand motorcycle wheel roller (review) and others.
But besides the fact that the Easy Wheeler can be used to spin a motorcycle wheel, it has about as much in common with a Rollastand as a Bimota Delirio does to a kid's Big Wheel.
The Easy Wheeler is completely fabricated from CNC-machined 6061 T6 billet aluminum and is assembled using stainless steel countersunk hex screws. The craftsmanship is stunning -- it's literally a work of art. OK, industrial art maybe, but art nevertheless.
I agonized over actually using it for so mundane a task as spinning a motorcycle wheel. I was thinking about what a crime it would be to roll a dirty motorcycle tire up an over the beautifully machined ramp and on to the delicately curved rollers with their knurled centers. I actually broke out the broom and swept the shop floor before I placed the Easy Wheeler on the concrete!
The rollers are also machined from billet aluminum and that wonderfully silky feel tells me that they must be rotating on some very high quality bearings. The massive 8.5 pound (3.8kg) chunk of aluminum is designed so the rollers lie only about 1" off the floor.
The Easy Wheeler also has six polyurethane "Shore A 90 durometer" feet underneath that are actually inserted into machined 3/8" holes in the base. These provide enough grip to keep the device in place as the motorcycle is pushed up the ramp. The ramp has an shallow grade, so it doesn't take much effort to push the bike up the ramp and on to the rollers.
The machined aluminum sides even have machined cutouts that look like the holes made in high-end swingarms or aircraft aluminum parts to save weight. The four main aluminum billet machined pieces also use the tongue-and-groove method along with the stainless countersunk hex bolts to assemble the parts.
Easy Wheeler recommends using a block of wood or other device under the side stand if necessary; the 1" height may be enough to cause the bike to lean too far over with the side stand deployed when the bike is on the rollers.
I have a shaved piece of 2x4" kicking around on the floor of the shop anyway that I use under the side stand when I'm lifting a bike up on to a paddock stand, and it works fine for the Easy Wheeler.
The rollers have been CNC-machined with a wide radius, so the motorcycle tire doesn't "walk" as much as it might on flat rollers. Nevertheless, the rear of the bike will work its way back and forth as the wheel is turned and this is something to be aware of. The rollers are wide enough to fit a motorcycle tire up to about 1800mm wide.
The rear roller includes 1/2" wide hex extensions on either side, so a socket can be used to rotate the roller, which will also rotate the rear wheel. The Easy Wheeler folks say that this is the coolest feature, because a portable rechargeable drill with a 1/2" socket/adapter can be used to turn the drive roller.
When turning the wheels in the recommended direction (front wheel forward and back wheel backwards), Easy Wheeler says "it makes short work of chain cleaning, oiling and tire treatments. By using either a ratcheting socket wrench or a portable drill, the wheels should never need to be moved by hand".
The combination of the robust design, high-quality bearings and curved rollers allow the Easy Wheeler to work more smoothly than any of the other motorcycle wheel rollers we've tried in the shop. The bearings have stainless steel cases and are double sealed and permanently greased.
Although it will take a bit of a shove to overcome the friction of the wheel and tire -- after all, roughly half the weight of the bike is on the rollers -- the Easy Wheeler definitely takes much less effort than the Rollastand, with its puny flat rollers and tiny bearings.
I haven't used the Easy Wheeler yet during a chain cleaning -- I'll probably cry when the first drop of dirty grease hits the beautifully polished aluminum!
But if you can get beyond the beauty of the thing and don't mind using a work of art that should probably be on display on the mantle over the fireplace rather than lying on a cold concrete floor ... you'll find that underneath that beauty is a serious tool that will probably last until they run out of dead dinosaurs (the Easy Wheeler comes with a lifetime warranty).
By the way, don't faint when you see the price, but believe it or not, it's cheap when you consider the work that goes into making one of these. Owners of 1970's-era BMW's, dirt riders or rat bike aficionados won't be interested, but what better way to display that Delirio or your Kustom Kromed Kruiser in its place of honor next to the coffee table?
NOTE: January 4, 2010 - The original Easy Wheeler described here is no longer in production and has been superseded by the Easy Wheeler II (review).
|wBW Review: Easy Wheeler Motorcycle Wheel Roller|
|Manufacturer: Easy Wheeler (Midwest Innovative Products, Inc.) (Note: No longer in business as of September 2010)||List Price: N/A|
|Colors: Machined and polished billet aluminum.||Made In: U.S.A.|
|Review Date: December 2006|
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