All posts by Arthur

Seasoned London commuter, doing my best to stay rubber side down and never stop moving forward.

Comparison of Anti-Fogging/Misting Solutions for Glasses

As a glasses wearer, I’ve always struggled with my glasses misting or fogging up on cold days. Whereas as my visor stays clear through the use of a Pinlock, there is no obvious solution for glasses, just a multitude of products to squirt on that claim to stop all misting up. But do they really work?  In the name of science I conducted a mini experiment to compare some popular products to ascertain which were most effective.

The Experiment

I used a number of old pairs of glasses, which I first cleaned then applied the various products as per their directions. As a control, one pair were left untreated. I then placed the glasses in the fridge to cool to 5℃, to mimic a ride on a cool winters day. First I took the glasses out into the kitchen with a humidity reading of 55%, to see how the lenses misted up (or not). Secondly I repeated by taking the glasses from fridge to hot shower room with a humidity reading of 60% to test a more extreme scenario.


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Sixth Sense Skills – Tip 19 (Bad Obs)

I know my video output has been a bit sparse lately, but I do hope you’ll find this one interesting.

There’s clearly a number of lessons to be drawn from this video on planning ahead, avoiding distractions, maintaining safe distances, personal safety bubble and not carrying too much speed into situations. I’d love to hear your thoughts on this. Thankfully the rider only had an injured pride and some minor cosmetic bike damage.

Kriega US-5 DryBag Tail Pack Luggage Review

Commuting daily into the city I normally have a huge top box to carry my huge security chain, work clothes and lunchbox. The top box is very practical on workdays, but total overkill when on a weekend blast where something more discrete would be preferable. Kriega are a quality brand I’ve heard many great recommendations of, so were a default choice when I picked up this US-5 DryBag tail pack from Infinity Motorcycles in Holborn for £50. It is the smallest tail pack Kriega do at just 5 litres and not cheap, but I’m hoping the it’s quality will make it good value.

The US-5 tail pack claims to be completely waterproof and fastens to the rear of your bike onto the pillion seat, however, it can also be strapped to larger Kriega bags and luggage to gain more capacity. Fours straps are provided to hook around the frame under your seat, which then poke out to attach the tail pack to. Otherwise a specific strap to bolt onto your bike is also provided. Two further straps then thread through the bag and simply clip onto the other straps attached to your bike. On my Fazer, the four default straps made for a simple install, all sorted in 5 mins. Then the bag itself can attached or detached with minimal fuss. Continue reading “Kriega US-5 DryBag Tail Pack Luggage Review” »

Hiring a Harley Davidson Dyna 103 in California

Golden Gate Bridge, San Francisco

This month I was posted to San Jose for work, but unlike most work trips this one included a stay over the weekend. So, stuck on my tod in California I decided to hire a Harley to explore the area as it’s not often you get chance to cruise down the West Coast freeways on a big hog, definitely on many bikers bucket lists and too good a chance to miss. I hired my bike from EagleRider in San Francisco, who had a wide selection of Harley’s to choose from (but also have others). I initially booked a Sportster 1200, but due to unavailability was given a Dyna Low Rider 103 as an upgrade – nice one!

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Fixing Broken Mounting Lugs and Plastic Welding

Lug holding fairing and lights to bracket

In my recent crash I smashed up the headlight cluster of the Fazer. Unfortunately this item alone is £250 brand new,  however I did find a much cheaper used one from a breaker, albeit missing one mounting lug. But I had the foresight to gather up many pieces from the crash, including some of the bust off lugs from my smashed lights. So my plan was to the weld a bust lug to my newly acquired lights, to get back up and running for not too much money.

Plastic welding is nowhere near as difficult as you may think and doesn’t need any expensive materials. You just need a good soldering iron, some cable ties and staples. The technique I followed was the outlined below in this video by Delboy’s Garage, do watch his howto and subscribe to his channel, he’s got some sound advice.

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Bike Repaired and Tips on Parts Hunting

Following my recent track day mishap, I’ve spent the last couple of weeks patching up the Fazer. It was a tough decision as to best plan, whether to repair back to stock, go naked/streetfighter or just flog it for spares. Especially tough when it’s only worth around £1.5k and will need to be traded in shortly due to the upcoming London ULEZ in one and half years time.

The damage, although cosmetic was extensive, the fairing plastic had disintegrated, the fairing bracket was about to snap, every mounting lug on the light cluster had snapped off, the clocks had lost a lug and the fuel gauge no longer worked. Those parts alone cost close on £1100 brand new… Even the street fighter option was less than straight forward, needing a new headlight, brackets, some different indicators, mirrors and some fabrication to mount the clocks.

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Track Day Crash at Circuit de Folembray

Gone and binned the bike. Again. Was attending a (road skills) track day with ELAM & EuroTrax at Folembray in France, when I lost it during the last session.

Whoops! Slight track day mishap. 

A post shared by Beginner Biker Adventures (@beginnerbiker) on

I went too wide powering out of a gentle left hander, kissed the grass which spooked me a little, but kept it upright. However I was out of shape and going to fast for the upcoming chicane, combined with a chap overtaking on my inside, I bottle it and tried to safely just run off rather than just tipping it extra hard to get round. Unfortunately I was just carrying to much speed to keep it upright on the grass and down I went. Bike came fell hard on the front fairing and I went sliding before coming to rest sat on my ass.

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Brembo Brake Disc and Fitting Faff

One of the downsides of pilings many miles onto a bike is the number of bigger non-routine items needing maintenance and replacement. This time is was the rear brake disc, whose thickness after 50,000 miles now measured below the service limit. Genuine Yamaha replacement discs are crazy money, so I picked up a Brembo disc from Demon Tweeks for £80. I figured Brembo was a decent brand and cheaper EBC discs seemed to have mixed reviews regarding longevity. I also picked a new set of bolts, thinking I’ll play it safe and be prepared. Little did I know how this would unfold.

Wheel removed and laid flat on some planks to protect the sprocket, I set out to remove the disc. For good measure I hammered the bolts to shock them and sprayed the bolts with some Wurth Rust-Off Ice spray, thinking the cold would help the bolts remove easily. Like shit they were going to come free easily! Totally seized on. More spray, more hitting, more tighten-loosen tweaking, and I managed to remove two. The other four rounded as though made of cheese. Lots of faffing ensues, attacking the bolts heads with mole grips whatever else I had in my toolbox. I tried to drill out one, but then just sheered the bolt head off leaving the remains still firmly seized inside the wheel. At that point I gave up before I trashed the wheel and dropped it off at my local garage – Wheelies in Rainham.

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Oxford Analogue Motorcycle Clock Review

I tend to have a love hate relationship with bus lanes; when you can use them they’re great for filtering past long queues of traffic, but with so many not open to bikes or only active at random times it can be a pain to work out when you can take advantage of them. Especially so when you’re riding an older bike with no clock! Which is exactly the problem with my wife’s Honda CBF500. Not wanting to get caught out with a bus lane fine, we bought this Oxford analogue clock.

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