How to ride a Sportbike

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Knowing the basics of position and control are essential for safe riding and proper handling of your sport bike. Spending some time testing your position and controls will not only improve your performance but it could prevent you making a fatal mistake.

Step 1:

Use a sport bike that is the right size for you. Your arms should be able to reach the bars easily and the seat should be a snug fit with your body gripping it. Never use a bike that is too big as this will be harder to control, and familiarize yourself with all the controls prior to riding.Step 2:

Sit on the seat of your sport bike and grip the tank with your knees so your lower body has a firm hold on the seat. Lean forward slightly so you have easy contact with the bars.

Step 3:
Lean your body to the left or right into a corner to turn. The shift in weight guides the bike into the corner in the same direction as you lean. At the same time, push down lightly on the corresponding bar with your hand to turn left or right and lean as you push.

Step 4:
Keep your arms and hands loose and relaxed at all times to prevent accidental pressure on the bars. Sports bikes are designed with very rapid reactions and the controls are very sensitive to the rider’s inputs, so maintain a light touch with your upper body and only apply pressure when you turn.

Step 5:
Move forward in the seat to put weight on the front tire to increase speed on straight stretches. Move back to slow down as your weight bears down on the back of the bike and causes traction, which will automatically reduce speed.

Step 6:
Ride your bike in safe areas such as designated tracks or unpopulated straight stretches and calculate easy distances to ride with frequent stopping points.

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10 Tips for Buying a Motorcycle

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Motorcycles are what everyone desires. If you are considering buying a used motorcycle you will need to be savvy so that you do not get taken for a ride. Not all used motorcycles are equal. So before you pay make sure the bike you are buying is the best in its category.Used motorcycles can be bought from family and friends, online stores, dealers, classifieds in newspapers and more. While buying a known motorcycle is your best option sometimes you may need to buy from unknown sources. Do your research well. Surf the internet and read articles and tips on bikes and what to look for when buying a motorbike. Visit a few dealers and online motorbike websites to see what is on sale in the used motorbike category. In case you are nervy take the help of an auto professional. Find out what the price is for used motorbikes this will give you an idea of brands and price range.

Before you decide on the bike consider:

1. Making a thorough inspection. Check for damage and scratches as well as bends and repair signs.

2. Study the different motorbike models and know what inherent flaws are.

3. Ask whether the bike has been raced and how many owners it has had.

4. Check the lines of the bike and the brake and clutch for smooth operation.

5. Rev the engine and listen to what it has to say. If you are tone deaf take along a biker friend.

6. Check the bike for signs of rust and paint flaking.

7. Check the wheel and tires for wear and tear.

8. Study the service records carefully.

9. Ask pertinent questions to know how the bike has been used and whether the owner takes pride in his bike. Judge whether the owner is being honest about the bikes accident free status and performance.

10. An owner who loves his bike will talk about it clearly and try and judge whether you will care for his old friend. Always make sure no modifications were done and that the service and maintenance were done by an authorized dealer with genuine parts.

Never buy the first bike you see. Buying a bike is like looking for an ever elusive pearl. Take your time and you will get a bike that will give trouble free rides. Always ask for a test ride and go through the papers to check there are no insurance or loan amounts pending. 

Study the bike not once but twice or even thrice before making a decision. Make sure you feel comfortable when seated on the bike. Motorbikes are like horses the owner and the motorbike must both feel as though they are one entity.

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Glow or not To Glow

There are those that do and those that don’t. Having your lights on during the day that is! Whatever your opinion you may not have a choice as more and more bikes are coming with their lights hard wired so when the thing is running dip beam is on. This is not legislation in the UK yet, but some European countries have adopted it and it helps the manufactures’ of 160mph missiles look safety conscious.

Let’s look at the advantages and disadvantages. Well I thought long and hard about this and I can only actually think of a single advantage.

It makes you easier to be seen. Or does it?

I have had a scan at the road bible and as usual the good old Highway Code is a minefield of contradiction. This thing was definitely written by a politician, you can not get a straight answer out of it. Did you know it is NOT ILLEGAL to drive at night WITHOUT your lights on in a built up area (restricted road is the term). That seems a bit ludicrous to me and the very next sentence states,”use headlights when visibility is seriously reduced”. I thought darkness did this. Anyway it seems 100m is the general guide line as to lights on or off. The next rule I found gives guidance saying use dip beam at night in built up areas to be seen. I give up.

So disadvantages.

It drains your battery.
It wears your bulbs out quicker.
It dazzles people.
It increases your mpg.
It bakes the dead flies and makes the buggers even harder to get off.
It makes you the same as a Volvo driver ‘cos they have their lights on as well.
It makes you look bigger (and more scary you intimidating biker). I nearly put this in advantages but realised the anti-bike brigade use this sort of thing against us.
It makes it harder to judge your approach speed. Very important.
It can give a false signal. Even veryer important (don’t think that’s a real word but you know what I mean.)
So most of these disadvantages seem fairly innocuous, except the last two.
Judging approach speed is quite an important skill and when a headlight is coming towards you the dazzle effect does something to your brain. Rabbits suffer from it too.
So that can be one explanation as to why we are being constantly pulled out on BY BLINDED CAR DRIVERS who cannot judge the light approaching them.
The final disadvantage is the scariest and this has happened to me and numerous friends I know. Scenario is lights on, bumpy road, stationery car waiting to turn right into a side road across your path or pull out across your path. You are sure they have seen you so continue at normal speed when they suddenly turn directly in front of you. Pap time, emergency brake, swerve, crash whatever!
While the priest is administering your last rights the said car driver runs up ranting and raving and tells you it was your own fault because you flashed him. It has never gone quite that far with me yet or I would not be writing this but I am always very wary of my lights being able to give this false signal of a flash, especially on bumpy road surfaces.
At least the road bible is clear on this one and states you should never assume a flash of a headlight means you are clear to go, so the law may reward you posthumously.
The problem is that it is universally accepted that the flash of a headlight means I am giving way to you

I don’t have the answer and it is purely a matter of choice and I still believe that single advantage of being easier to see in general far outweighs all the others. I ride with them on.

Oh, I almost forgot, tip to remove the baked on flies. Use toilet roll or tissue paper, lay it on your headlight and fairing and liberally soak with water. Leave 10 mins then wipe off and all the bakelite flies come with it.

This info is given to you by 2wheelskool, a riding school dedicated to improving our LOT! www.2wheelskool.co.uk pay us a visit.

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