How to stop sidestand roll-aways

BrakeFix stops sidestand roll-aways

Some motorcycles have sturdy and long sidestands and are very unlikely to roll off the sidestand, but some are too short, too flimsy and almost vertical which means almost any movement will have them toppling over.

But there are some simple, cheap, complex and expensive fixes for the age-old problem.

The cheapest and easiest is tying rubber bands or a bungee strap around the front brake lever. 

Or you could chock a rock or lump of wood under the wheel, although you might need to carry around the bulky item as they aren’t always readily available wherever you park.

Or you could use straps or a chain to lash it to a fixture, but again that’s a bulky item to carry with you.

Or you could leave it in gear when you park, but on some slopes or steep driveways, or with some almost vertical sidestands, it can still roll away. (Make sure you move the bike just a bit to ensure compression locks it and stops it from moving.)

Or you could use the centre stand – if you have one – although it can be difficult to use on steep slopes.

Or you could buy a Harley-Davidson which has a brilliant patented locking sidestand.

Harley with a locked sidestand
Harley Breakout with a locking sidestand

Or you could buy a BrakeFix gizmo for a few dollars. (We’re not sure of the Aussie price, but they’re €9.99 in the UK, which is about $A20 or $US15.)

BrakeFix stops sidestand roll-aways
BrakeFix stops sidestand roll-aways

This compact item wraps around the throttle grip of your bike and the front brake lever. You then adjust the BrakeFix to apply light pressure to the front brake lever, preventing your bike from rolling forward or backwards and potentially falling over.

It’s small enough to fit in your jacket pocket, under your seat or in a tool pouch.

BrakeFix will work on just about any bike with a front brake lever, whether it’s a cruiser, touring bike, sportsbike, minibike, trailbike or quadbike.

The only problem I can see is that someone could easily steal it.

But it’s probably better than a rubber band because it looks nicer and would hold more brake pressure than a rubber band which could also snap.

BrakeFix is available in Australia through ProAccessories.

WARNING: Don’t park your bike up for months with the brake locked on as it can put the seals of a hydraulic system under load or may stretch the brake cable.

4 Comments

  1. I would never use this method or one of these devices to park a bike. They cannot be relied on 100%. Hydraulic brake systems are not designed to be held on constantly. A tiny bit of seepage of brake fluid past the seals (particularly the internal seals in the master cylinder) has no adverse effect on normal braking because in normal use the brakes are only applied for a few seconds at a time or maybe a minute or so when stopped at a red light. But if the brakes are held on for couple of hours or more a little bit of seepage could be enough to release them. The older the bike is the more likely it is that this will happen. Regular use of this method will probably stretch the seals and brake lines.

    Another method of stopping the bike from rolling forward and falling off its stand is to fit a disc lock on the rear disc up against the calliper. You may have to roll the bike forward a little if none of the holes are in exactly the right place. If you are worried about marking the calliper, stick a bit of tape or rubber on the lock. This will work on most bikes that have the calliper above the swingarm. Bikes don’t normally roll backwards because of the way that the side stand works, but you could fit the disc lock under the swingarm if necessary. I wouldn’t use a disc lock on a front disc because of the danger of damaging the fork tube or disc if the bike is moved backwards. Using a disc lock also gives extra security against theft of your bike and the device itself.

  2. Park in gear, easy.

    The number of riders I see struggling to find neutral before stopping their engine is amazing. Pull up, hit kill switch, key off, easy. If you really must park in neutral, and I do in the shed for convenience moving bikes about, shut down first, then find neutral which is generally much easier. If its really steep, allow the bike to find compression which will then hold it. If it still moves, its likely not got enough tyre grip and you need a rethink.

    1. HI,
      Yes, always park in first gear. However, I’ve had a bike roll off its stand in first! Sometimes they can move just slightly in first and with a flimsy, vertical sidestand it can just be enough to make it fall over. You’re right about moving it until it finds compression and it’s a good tip!
      Cheers,
      Mark

    2. I almost always, on any bike, select neutral while the bike is still moving. It has become something I naturally do without thinking about it. While you are moving it is as easy as changing gears.

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