Categories
Featured Riding

Solo Motorcycle Tour Tips

It’s well documented that riding a motorbike can bring a huge sense of freedom and when you tour solo for longer distances over many days this feeling is even greater. For a beginner, that first big solo motorcycle trip can be quite daunting, raising many what-if questions – what if I break down? what if I get lost? Some people are just more naturally confident, whilst others are less so, worry more and find the idea of riding out into the unknown uneasy.

If you’ve not travelled long distance by bike solo before and are somewhat nervous of the proposition, but do what to overcome this fear and explore, then read on. This article will hopefully give you some tips to beat those fears and plan for a trouble free motorcycle tour.

Categories
Featured Riding

Adventures Down Under, Rental MT09 in Brisbane, Part 2

Continuing my MT09 adventure down under in Brisbane, for my second day I followed a route loosely based on this Rent This Bike blog post, an epic loop heading North West of Brisbane around lake Wivenhoe, taking in Mount Glorious, then North West over to Kingaroy, through Bunya Mountain and then back via Cooyar, Crows Nest and Esk. A substantial ride to do in one day at around 535 km, that left me minimal time to stop and explore along the route, before riding back into Brisbane after dark due to the early autumn nights. Definitely get out on the road early or consider stopping the night half way for a more leisurely cruise.

Categories
Gear Reviews

Rev’it! Sand 3 Textile Jacket Review

The lowly motorbike jacket is an underrated garment we all take for granted, yet it has a tough role to perform. A good jacket must first and foremost keep you well protected from impacts, slides down the road and whatever the weather throws at you. On rough days, it should keep you warm and dry, and on hot days keep you cool. Finally it needs to be comfortable to wear and crucially, look good. No one is going to enjoy a jacket that’s badly fitting or looks a bit naff. Some of you may splash out on a jacket for each season, but others starting out on two wheels will likely be on a tighter budget and will be after a single all weather jacket. Similarly, if you’re planning a long tour or just commuting at the mercy of the British weather, then you really need one jacket that can cover you from all eventualities.

The Rev’It! Sand 3 jacket aims to tick all the boxes and provide an all seasons jacket in the mid-price bracket for around £360. Provided for review by Fortamoto.com (the well regards Amsterdam based motorcycle store), I’ve put it through it’s paces over the last few wintery weeks in London. Read on to see if it lives up to promises.

Categories
Featured Motorcycles

Top Tips to Protect Your Motorbike From Theft

Theft is every bikers worst nightmare and tragically, is still a huge problem, especially in big cities. As such, it is now essential to fork out for all manner of extra security devices to help protect your pride and joy. With so much choice, we’re going to go through the pros and cons of different security measures so you can opt for the most effective and avoid wasting money.

Of course we all have insurance cover, but many of us will have high excesses to keep premiums affordable. If your bike is stolen, there is a chance it will be recovered, but this can leave you even worse off as there maybe recovery and storage bills from the Police and a hefty repair bill. Never mind the hike in premiums for several years to come. For a cheap commute bike, theft cover is almost pointless as it would just be too uneconomical to claim.

Bike recovery figures have improved drastically over the last few years. The NCIS report from 2001 quoted a figure of just 16% of stolen bikes being recovered. A decade on and the figure is looking better at around about 45% across the EU. This is almost certainly due to advancements in GPS tracking technologies and smart identification systems.

Around 80% of motorcycle theft occurs at home, so it makes sense to install the strongest security measures there, for example an extra beefy chain, CCTV or a locked garage.

In this article I’m going to highlight a few of the most common attacks employed by motorcycle thieves, then go through all the main security devices on the market, comparing their effectiveness.

SportsBikeShop-HorizBannerSecurity

Categories
Riding

Ride Routes and Best Biking Roads

Whether you’re a new biker looking for places to ride, or a seasoned biker in need of fresh routes to try, here is a round up of my favourite routes. Many eminate from East London and out into Essex, Herts, Beds or Suffolk, but some stretch further afield across middle England into Wales and such like.

Adventures Down Under, Rental MT09 in Brisbane, Part 1
Adventures Down Under, Rental MT09 in Brisbane, Part 2
Upminster-Buplhan-Tilbury-Brentwood-loop
After Work Twisty Road Circuit
Losing Chicken Strips
Another Jaunt Across Middle England
Autumn Ride to North Wales
RideOutToBurnhamBends
Essex Ride Out, Burnham Bends to Bishops Stortford
Good Friday Seaside Ride, London to Essex Loop
OsmAnd Start Riding
Howto: Plan & Follow a Google Maps Route on Motorcycle with your Phone
Impromptu Essex Ride Out
Mersea Island Ride - 1
Mersea Island Ride Out
Mid Wales Ride Out – The Abergwesyn Pass
Motorcycle Routes around San Francisco & San Jose Bay Area
Ride Out Route – Essex Loop
Ride Out to Finchingfield, Essex
Food Stop Cafe Bridgenorth
Scenic Ride Back From Shrewsbury
Scotland West Coast Road Trip around Isle of Mull & Skye with Mapped/FA
Bosworth's Tearooms
Summer Ride Outs Via Finchingfield
Welsh trip Jul16 Ludlow Castle
Trip to North Wales July 2016

Most of these routes are presented in Google Maps form, which can easily be sent straight to your phone, or can be downloaded in the universal KML format for import into Garmin or TomTom satnav’s.

If you’ve ridden any of these routes, do report back, I’d love to hear your thoughts. Similarly, if you have your own alternative detours or routes, I’d also love to hear from you.

Categories
Riding

Biking Videos, Sixth Sense Skills

Throughout my riding in London I constantly witness a multitude of situations unfolding on the busy roads, that make me cringe and say to myself ‘knew they were going to do that!’ As a biker, you need this kind of sixth sense to remain upright and safe. For seasoned bikers it will be instinct and an unconscious reflex, however for new riders it will be a skill that may need developing.

Please watch my videos, see if you can predict what is about to happen and spot the tell tail signs that give it away. I hope you find them interesting and possibly learn something that may help you on the roads.

BMW Drivers
California Adventures: Riding Yosemite on a Yamaha Super Ténéré
California Dreaming – Harley Davidson Road King Rental
California Revisited – Exploring San Francisco on a Bonneville
ELAM Ride Out Video
Filtering Tips Video, Part 1
Harley Davidson Test Ride, Heritage Soft Tail 114
Highlights Roundup Video 2019
How to Replace a Clutch Lever (Honda CBF 500)
Prudential Ride London Sweep Team Volunteering
Replacing Air Filter on Yamaha Fazer FZS600
Sixth Sense Skills – Morning Commute Close Call
Sixth Sense Skills – Tip 1
Sixth Sense Skills – Tip 11 (Expect the Unexpected)
Sixth Sense Skills – Tip 12 (SMIDSY Avoidence)
Sixth Sense Skills – Tip 13
Sixth Sense Skills – Tip 14 – Fail 🙁
Sixth Sense Skills – Tip 17
Sixth Sense Skills – Tip 18 (Super Close Call)
Sixth Sense Skills – Tip 19 (Bad Obs)
Sixth Sense Skills – Tip 20 (Peds)
Sixth Sense Skills – Tip 3
Sixth Sense Skills – Tip 4
Sixth Sense Skills – Tip 6
Sixth Sense Skills – Tip 7 (SMIDSY Double Bill)
Sixth Sense Skills – Tip 9 (Booner Racer Dodging)
Sixth Sense Skills – Tip 10 (SMIDSY)
Sixth Sense Skills – Tip 2
Sixth Sense Skills – Tip 5
Sixth Sense Skills – Tip 8 (Filtering in a car)
Sixth Sense Skills 16
Video Montage 2017 Highlights

Watch videos on YouTube