Category:Gear Guides

We hate this, with a passion! You lock up your precious motorcycle to come back to it and find that it has been stolen. No matter how strong the lock, thieves always find a quick way of disabling it.

But maybe now there is much better lock coming our way, the Skunklock!

As the name implies the lock acts like a skunk; tamper with the lock and it releases a very noxious gas, just like its namesake animal counterpart does. The gas is not lethal (too bad) but its effects are instantaneous; the criminal starts vomiting.

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If you have an electric start ride, you have a battery. Let's take a look at batteries, battery tech and who kind of battery you should have.

TYPES

Conventional

This is the cheapest battery. It also requires the most maintenance.

You'll be adding water, distilled water please, to the battery to maintain it. The caps do not seal the battery well enough to keep the liquid inside. When the battery warms up, the liquid insideevaporates.

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What is horsepower, torque and what's the difference between them? What does it mean when talking about motorcycles? 

HORSEPOWER 

Horsepower is abbreviated HP. It's an old measurement from the times when the biggest equipment humanity had were horses and oxen. 

So what is a horsepower? That depends on whom you ask and how it's being used. 

Horsepower, in a motorcycle, is in several areas: 

Brake HP. The net mechanical energy put out by the crankshaft.

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With more and more companies announcing electric motorcycles, you may well ask "How do these things work?" 

The short answer is a battery-powered electrical motor. Electric motors are common. Household appliances use electric motors. Power tools use electric motors. Giant electric motors, turbines, power part of the national grid. 

A BRIEF HISTORY

By itself, electrical motors are nearly 200 years old. Dutchmen Sibrandus Stratingh and Christopher Becker built an electric motor that powered a car in 1835. 

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Motorcycles are left out of the US Department of Transportation's new Road to Zero safety plan.

The biker community's activists are not happy about this.

"We laud the efforts of these three federal agencies and the National Safety Council to reduce the number of crashes, injuries and fatalities on the nation's roads," said Wayne Allard, vice president of government relations for the American Motorcyclist Association. 

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Chains and belts are the most common methods to get power from the engine on a motorcycle to a wheel. Some bikes do use drive shafts, but that is less common. Here's a look at these methods motorcycles use to get a ride down the road.

WHICH CAME FIRST

Belts drove the first motorcycles. Heavy duty leather was mounted to a large pulley. Today, that sounds close to impossible, but early motorcycles were not the power plants we ride today.

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A motorcycle that won't start is much less of a problem than a motorcycle that won't stop. When you grab the grip and push the pedal to apply brakes to your bike, you stop the bike.



 



On a motorcycle, the amount of braking power you get per wheel varies. A New Zealand website that offers sample driver's license tests says the front wheel delivers 75-90 percent of the braking power. The braking power varies by bike, it says. "A sport bike will take more braking on the front wheel, whereas a cruiser carries more weight over the rear wheel and will have more braking power in the rear wheel. 

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A motorcycle that won't start is a much smaller problem than a motorcycle that won't stop.

So how do we stop our steel steeds? Brakes. Here's a look at brakes and some things you need to know about them.

BRAKE FLUID

Motorcycles today use hydraulic braking systems. The brake fluid is a non-compressible fluid. It comes in three types, DOT fluid. It's sold as DOT3, DOT4 and DOT5.

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You may be wondering what YAH means. It means “Yet Another HUD” with HUD meaning Heads Up Display. Over the year, there have been several projects that put a display inside the biker’s helmet. 

It started several years ago (2005) with the first commercial product from a company called SportVue. SportVue was a small device installed on the top edge of your helmet, receiving wireless information from a “blackbox” installed in your motorcycle. 

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Louisiana requires bikers to pass a knowledge and skills test to get a full M-class license since 2011.

Now the Creole State is stepping up voluntary training for bikers who want to know more. The Louisiana State Police is offering the new training course at various locations and dates around the state.

“It’s fun and it’s terrifying at the same time,” said Quang Le, a first-time rider, told KSLA News upon taking the first ever offered course.

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Many, if not most motorcycles have turn signals that need to be turned off when you stop your maneuver. And since we’re quite busy on our bikes, we often forget to turn off the turn signal (that is, if we remembered to turn them on in the first place). This can lead to dangerous situations with traffic. If you’ve got your blinkers indicating you’re going to the right because you have just turned right but forgot to turn them off, a car/truck driving behind you might just think you’re about to turn. And that can lead to accidents.

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