My last rear tire change, I was gonna go thru all that. With a friends advice. I removed the left bag, put it on a bike jack up real high and pulled the axle. ( I blocked the front wheel, but jack location turned out I didn't need to compensate for the weight loss)
Once the axle was out I pulled the wheel off the rear end and slid the tire out laying it down as I did. It came right out. It was quick and easy.
That bag lift thing may have another purpose but all that work sure isn't needed for tire removal.
My trade also. When 1500's came out in 88, Honda put on a new product school. The procedure they showed us was to remove the tour pac as an ass'y, which isn't really that hard. But it takes quite a little extra time and requires a second person as the pac is rather big and clumsy. My co-worker (at the time) and I were relieved to find the tire could be removed without all that work. Since then, I'm sure I have replaced at least a thousand 1500 rears using the drop down method. Makes it possible to do a set tires in less than 1.5 hours.Thats the exact way i was told to do my '88 1500 by a bike mechanic. He said it was a lot easier than taking the panniers apart.
I never tried doing it any other way. I didn't have a jack or a table lift. I used a couple of car ramps and stuck one under one side at the centre of gravity point and then pushed the bike back and kicked the other one under the other side. worked a treat at the time but use a bike jack now for the '02 1800.