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Motorcycle Buying 101: The Basics

By General Posts

Are you looking to buy your first motorcycle?

by Law Tigers at www.lawtigers.com
Congratulations — you’re about to begin one of the most enjoyable, rewarding hobbies. However, the bike you purchase plays a significant role in your experience as a motorcyclist. As a result, you’ll want to perform adequate research to determine the best bike for your needs.

Read ahead to learn our motorcycle buying tips and the basics you should understand before purchasing your first bike.

Consider Styles of Motorcycles

Before you can determine which bike to buy, you’ll need to choose a style of bike. Motorcycles come in the following styles:

  • Standard: Offers a comfortable ride, neutral ergonomics, a shorter seat, and room for variations
  • Cruiser: Includes a lower seat and comfortable riding experience for cruising around town
  • Touring: Offers amenities for cross-country tips, including significant storage, easy ergonomics, and sizable fairings
  • Sport bike: Optimizes speed and agility with a high seat and lightweight build
  • Sport touring: Blends the characteristics of a sport and touring bike
  • Dual sport: Includes a versatile build suitable for most terrains

You can always perform more research about each of these bike types to learn their specific builds and features. However, we recommend first considering how you plan to use your bike. Will you primarily take short rides around town, or are you planning cross-country road trips on your motorcycle?

Once you narrow down the best type of motorcycle for your needs, you can begin searching for a bike within that style.

Understand Engine Sizes

Motorcycles also come with various engine sizes, so you’ll want to consider the appropriate size for your riding habits.

Typically, smaller engines are more cost-effective, as their bikes come with cheaper price tags, and they are more affordable to insure. However, small-engine bikes have less power and drive than large-engine ones.

Determine Used vs. New

Next, you’ll want to consider whether you will purchase a used motorcycle or a brand-new one.

Used motorcycles are almost always more affordable than their brand-new models. As a result, if you’re on a tight budget or are looking for a good first bike to start your new hobby, you may want to purchase a used one.

However, used motorcycles are also less reliable than new ones. These motorcycles pose the risk that something could go wrong while riding, leading to costly repairs or even accidents. Generally, before you purchase a used motorcycle, you should have a mechanic examine it thoroughly to determine its condition.

You should also look at a used bike’s mileage before purchasing it. Motorcycles have shorter lifespans than cars. While 20,000 miles is relatively low for a car, this mileage is high for small motorcycles. Be sure to consider a bike’s mileage to estimate how much life you may be able to get out of it.

Set a Budget

You should have at least a vague idea of your budget before searching for a motorcycle. If you’re not sure what price range you want to stick to, you may be tempted to purchase something absurdly cheap or expensive.

If you’re planning to purchase a used bike, we recommend looking in the $1,500 to $3,000 range. However, if you’re hoping to buy a new motorcycle, you’ll need to spend more. The average cost of a new bike in 2022 is around $16,000.

Start Searching

Now you should have all of the information you need to start searching for your first motorcycle. You can check out dealerships, private sellers, and online shops to view their current inventory of motorcycles in your preferred style. Just be sure to compare price points across a few sellers to ensure that you get a good deal.

Sign up for your free rider benefit package while you’re here. If you have a motorcycle and have been injured in an accident call Law Tigers at 1-888-863-7216.

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World’s Simplest Starter Tech

By General Posts

New! NASH “PUSH” Button Starter Plunger Assembly

By Bandit with photos by Wrench

Okay, so here’s the confession. When I build bobbers or choppers, I try to keep everything simple and super reliable. For instance, electric start circuits, which involve starter relays, buttons, handlebar switches, you name it. Maybe Billy from Spyke came up with this system that eliminates almost everything.

They are the shit for reliable, no mess starting every time. There’s but one issue with these puppies, position. They are usually located on the front of the starter solenoid under the oil tank, which can be an issue for stock bikes.

READ THIS Great Tech Article on Bikernet by Clicking Here.

All the Photos & Tricks in it so check it out today.

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The Motorcycle Battery Files

By General Posts

Lowbrow Battery Line-Up and J&P about Testing

By Bandit, the Lowbrow Team and Anthony Todd from J&P Cycles

We found ourselves in the battery market again recently. We ran into a couple of issues. First, trying to fit a battery into an almost stock 1948 center oil tank. Lowbrow has an option, but it involved a very small anti-gravity lithium battery. Unfortunately, they were out of stock. Plus, they didn’t have a gel option. They did have a cool, stock, replica battery case.

I did find a stock replacement battery but only in 6 Volt. I needed a 12-Volt unit for my 1948 UL. It had been modified for a 12-Volt system. Then the Lowbrow crew came up with this handy battery guide, so I thought I would share it with an article by Anthony Todd, of J&P Cycles, about testing charging systems.

I went to J&P Cycles, but they don’t list battery dimensions on their website. I would think that would be a major drawback to sales, especially involving custom bikes. We all face custom oil bags with odd size battery holes. Or worse, we have limited space for a battery and need to adapt. We need to know the dimensions. Let’s roll through the Lowbrow report.

The development of motorcycle batteries has really advanced in recent years. Back in-the-day a conventional motorcycle battery with an acid pack was the standard. You would open the top caps, pour in your acid pack, and throw it on a charger for 24 hours. This was the typical process for a lead acid classic motorcycle battery.

There are a variety of types of motorcycle batteries for you to choose from these days. AGM maintenance free batteries, Gel AGM batteries, and Lithium motorcycle batteries are all on the market.

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Battery Maintenance 101

By General Posts

This is a 6-Volt Battery Tender for Vintage batteries.

And How to Use Tenders
By Bandit, Jason Mook, Battery Tender Crew, and Jeff Holt

How to use battery tenders? We are on the hunt.

A friend kept his bike on a tender 24/7. But when he rode to his girl’s house and spent the night, the bike was dead in the morning.

Jason Mook, the owner of Deadwood Custom Cycles recommends putting your bike on a charger or tender once a week, charge it and then unplug it.

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Five Tips for a Time-Sensitive DIY Job

By General Posts

Learn to tackle your next time-sensitive project with confidence
by Kyle Smith from Hagerty.com

The garage is a strange place.

Some projects you tackle with all the time in the world, and others are on a deadline tighter than ten-year-old denim. Anyone that has rushed to wrap up a project understands the stress and frustration that accompanies a time crunch.

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Best motorcycle cleaner for 2021: Top 10 products

By General Posts

by Kyle Hyatt from https://www.cnet.com

Cleaning your motorcycle can be a pain, but this stuff makes it a lot easier.

Motorcycle cleaner notes
The visual benefits of keeping a clean bike are pretty obvious, I mean, more shiny is more better, right? But there are some performance and safety benefits, too. For example, if your bike is filthy, it can be hard to see if you’ve suddenly sprung a leak of some vital fluid (usually oil).

Some road crud can be corrosive over time to the exposed steel and aluminum parts of your motorcycle, not to mention the fasteners that hold things onto your bike. You thought changing out that clutch was going to be easy, didn’t you? It would have been if you hadn’t left a bunch of road salt all over the bike for months. Now it’s broken-bolt city, population: you.

The performance benefits are more subtle but no less real. This is especially true when it comes to chain maintenance. Just think, if your motorcycle has to fight the friction of a dry, dirty or corroded chain, then that’s power lost. If you’re on a 200-horsepower sport bike, that’s not a big deal, but if you’re on a 20-horsepower motorcycle like the Royal Enfield Meteor 350 I recently reviewed, you might just notice.

Keep your bike clean with a well-stocked motorcycle care kit, and make your life easy.

Best general motorcycle cleaner overall
S100 Total Cycle Cleaner $15

Best general motorcycle cleaner overall runner-up
Muc-Off Nanotechnology Motorcycle Cleaner $16

Best motorcycle quick detailer
S100 Detail & Wax spray $15

Best waterless motorcycle wash
Muc-Off High-Performance No Rinse Bike Cleaning Spray $18

Best motorcycle chain cleaner and lube
Maxima Clean Up and Chain Wax $28

Best motorcycle chain cleaning brush
Simple Solutions The Grunge Brush $14

Best motorcycle wheel cleaner
S100 Motorcycle Wheel Cleaner $21

Best motorcycle chrome cleaner and polish
Simichrome Polish $14

Best complete motorcycle cleaning kit
S100 Motorcycle Detailing Kit $50

Best motorcycle helmet cleaner
Motul Helmet Clean $8

I love riding motorcycles, but kind of hate the care and maintenance that they require — especially when it’s my own bike. Luckily, I live in a place where things are dry and dusty rather than wet and muddy, so I can get by most of the time. But when it’s time to buckle down and wash the bike, there are a few motorcycle cleaning products I always turn to.

In addition to keeping your bike clean, it’s important to clean and lubricate your chain (if you have one) and make sure your helmet is free of crud and dried bugs. I’ve listed some of the best motorcycle cleaner products here. They’ve been good to me over the years for both purposes and hopefully you’ll appreciate them too.

Best general motorcycle cleaner overall – S100 Total Cycle Cleaner
I’m one of those people who like a clean motorcycle, but hate actually cleaning their motorcycle. That used to mean that I’d just live with a dirty motorcycle most of the time, but not since I found S100 spray cleaner.

This cleaning product is awesome and it’s easy to use. Spray it on, let it sit for a few minutes and hose it off. It does a great job of removing dirt, road grime, grease, dried-on bugs and whatever else I’ve accumulated on my adventures. It’s also safe on plastics like your motorcycle windshield and metals, so no worries about it harming any exposed components on your motorcycle.

Best general motorcycle cleaner overall runner-up – Muc-Off Nanotechnology Motorcycle Cleaner
The Muc-Off Nano Tech bike cleaner spray is awesome. It smells better than the S100 and it’s biodegradable. Muc-Off also sells it in concentrate form, which I love, so you don’t have to constantly buy new plastic bottles.

Like the S100, it’s a spray on and rinse off affair and it does a great job of removing caked on road grime nastiness from all parts of your motorcycle without sending a bunch of harsh chemicals down the drain.

Best motorcycle quick detailer – S100 Detail & Wax spray
Sometimes you just need to touch up your bike before heading out on an all-day ride with your buds. I mean, you don’t want to show up and have the least shiny two-wheeled machine, now do you?

This S100 Detail and Wax spray is great because it’s specifically geared towards motorcycles and does a good job of shining paint and powder-coat. It’s easy to use, too. Just spray on the detailer and wipe it off with a good microfiber towel.

Best waterless motorcycle wash – Muc-Off High-Performance No Rinse Bike Cleaning Spray
What do you do if you have a dirty motorcycle and you don’t have access to a hose? Either take it to a coin-op car wash to use the pressure washer (which kind of sucks) or grab the awesome High-Performance Waterless Wash spray from Muc-Off.

Like basically every Muc-Off product, this bike cleaner is easy on the environment while still being tough on stubborn dirt and grime. All you have to do is spray it on, let it soak for a minute and wipe it off. After you wiped the dirt off, get a new clean microfiber cloth and buff your bike until it shines. It’s super easy and packs into a backpack or side case for easy motorcycle cleaning on the go.

Best motorcycle chain cleaner and lube – Maxima Clean Up and Chain Wax
Keeping your motorcycle’s chain clean and lubed is a miserable task, but it’s critical if you want to keep your chain and sprocket in tip-top condition. There are as many different products and techniques and old-timey sage wisdom for cleaning and lubing motorcycle chains as there are stars in the sky, but I’m going to recommend what works for me.

The Maxima products — Clean Up chain cleaner and Chain Wax — are the perfect one-two punch for chain maintenance. Clean Up does an excellent job of removing dirt, debris and and acting as a degreaser for old gross lube while at the same time being gentle on the delicate O-rings inside your chain. Chain wax is a spray-on chain lube that goes on wet and then dries into a waxy coating that resists coming off and doesn’t encourage dirt to stick to it. The best part is that Maxima offers it in a combo pack with a decent penetrating lubricant as a bonus.

Best motorcycle chain cleaning brush – Simple Solutions The Grunge Brush
As we’ve already established, cleaning motorcycle chains sucks. It’s greasy, grimy work and depending on how nasty you’ve let your chain get, it can be hard work, too. Having a good chain-cleaning brush in your cleaning kit is a huge help and my personal favorite brush is the Grunge Brush.

The Grunge Brush has stiff bristles that clean your chain on three sides at once, plus longer bristles at the other end for getting into your sprocket teeth and so on. It’s cheap and effective and it even has replaceable brushes, so you’re not constantly buying new ones. When paired with a good chain cleaning solvent like Maxima’s Clean Up, this makes the work of chain maintenance a whole lot easier.

Best motorcycle wheel cleaner – S100 Motorcycle Wheel Cleaner
There are a zillion different wheel cleaners on the market and they all do something a little different, but one of the things I like best about the S100 motorcycle wheel cleaner is that it is a thicker, more gel-like formula which sticks to your wheels better. It does a great job of getting brake dust, dirt and other grime off as well.

The other nice thing about the S100 Motorcycle Wheel Cleaner is that it’s gentle, which means it’s safe on all kinds of wheels — be they painted, powder-coated, aluminum, magnesium or stainless steel. If your bike’s wheels are too dirty for normal bike wash to take care of, grab a spray bottle of this.

Best motorcycle chrome cleaner and polish – Simichrome Polish
Unlike most cars these days, it’s easy to buy a brand new motorcycle with a bunch of chrome. And chrome looks great until it starts to dull or pit, but then it looks like crap. Thankfully the solution to that dull chrome problem is easy: Just polish it!

If you’re going to undertake that task, you’re going to need a good chrome polish compound and one of my personal favorites comes straight outta Germany. It’s called Simichrome and it works really, really well. All you need to do is apply the elbow grease with a microfiber towel using this metal polish and get ready to be blinded by the shine.

Best complete motorcycle cleaning kit – S100 Motorcycle Detailing Kit
If you’re detecting a theme with the S100 products here, you’re not mistaken. The fact is that S100 offers some of the best motorcycle-specific cleaning and detailing products around and at reasonable prices. Still, what if you don’t necessarily want to buy each product by itself? Thankfully there’s a motorcycle cleaning kit.

The S100 detailing kit comes with everything you’ll need to detail your motorcycle short of a hose and water — including a drying towel. Even better, it comes in a tidy little carrying case, so you can keep all your motorcycle cleaning supplies together and not let things get lost in the back of some dank, daddy longlegs-infested garage cabinet over the winter.

Best motorcycle helmet cleaner – Motul Helmet Clean
Everybody knows that riding with a motorcycle helmet is a good idea — hell, it’s even the law in most places. What people might not know is that while keeping your helmet clean is a good thing, using chemicals is a huge no-no — even on the outside. Luckily, there are a few great helmet cleaning products on the market and my favorite comes from Motul.

The Motul helmet spray not only does an epic job of loosening dried on bugs and dirt from the shell of your helmet, it also offers up a nice shine that is more resistant to getting bugs stuck on it in the future. Spray it on, let it soak and wipe it off.

For the inside of your helmet, never try and clean the pads and liner when they’re still inside the shell. Always remove them and wash them gently according to your helmet manufacturer’s guidelines.

Phillips or JIS

By General Posts

What Works and How…
Photos and text by Kyle Smith, Hagerty Media

The unsung hero of the automotive world is the threaded fastener. Most people only think about the bolts and screws of their machines when they have to, when the components are stripped, seized, or broken off. That dismissive attitude, however, may cause these components to strip, seize, or break in the first place.

For instance, if you are working on a classic motorcycle, you are probably using the wrong screwdriver—and are setting yourself up for disaster. Hear me out.

Click Here to Read this Tech Tip on Bikernet.

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Riding with your Dog

By General Posts

For most of us, our pets are considered family. So, have you ever felt guilty leaving your furry friend at home when you’re taking a ride? Nowadays, you don’t have to leave them whining at the door. Dogs already love the wind in their hair, so taking Fido with you on your next ride could be a match made in heaven. Check out our tips for motorcycling with your dog and don’t forget, safety should always be your #1 priority.

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Back To Basics – How To Change A Rear Tire

By General Posts

Andie’s Garage: The How To’s for Basic Maintenance On Your Motorcycle

I want to share with you the basics of repairs so you can decide if you want to tackle it yourself, or just simply know what happens when you take it to someone else to get repaired.

I like to smoke tires, not drugs! The down side to this addictive behavior? Always replacing rear tires!

Not only do I complete a burnout before each and every pass I make on the drag strip, I like to do them for fun!

CLICK HERE TO READ A HOW-TO GUIDE TO CHANGING YOUR REAR TIRE

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Measuring to Get the Right Size Helmet

By General Posts

J&P Cycles shows you how to measure to get the right size helmet.
For an accurate head measurement, wrap the measuring tape horizontally around your head about 1″ above your eyebrows. Your helmet should fit snugly. Keep the measuring tape comfortably tight in order to achieve the best results. For precise results, measure two or three times. If you get different measurements, take the largest one. If your head measurement falls between two different sizes on the helmet sizing chart, choose the smaller helmet size.

 

 

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