SportBike

Sportbike, Motovlogging & Motorcycle Tips For New Riders.

What Is the Average Cost of Motorcycle Insurance?

Motorcycles are fun, and have become a bit of an American icon representing free spirits, independence and a fun personality. Who hasn’t, at one time, wanted one, or at least to try riding one?

Well, like with any vehicle, you’re going to have to be trained to ride it, and you’re going to need insurance, as with anything on the road. Insurance is a pain, of course. It’s one of those things you shell out hundreds of dollars a year for, and hope to powers above that you never wind up needing once you have it.

It’s necessary. When you’re on the road traveling at speeds of over sixty miles per hour, accidents can and will eventually happen. Humans make mistakes, and some are, to put it frankly, idiots who just drive or ride carelessly. Insurance protects you from said idiots.
Insurance is a necessary evil, so it’s not free. Before investing in your motorcycle, you should do your due diligence regarding what upkeep of your bike is going to cost you. This includes maintenance, plates, tags, your license and, most importantly of all, said insurance.

So, how expensive is motorcycle insurance? There’s no clear-cut answer to that, because different companies will vary, and more importantly, factors about yourself will directly, linearly impact price in every situation.

Let’s take some time to talk about these. If you see yourself described in any of these with prices you find painful, it may not be time for a motorcycle yet, or some other luxury may have to be given up.

What’s the Difference?

You’re thinking, you have a car, you know what car insurance rates are like, is there honestly a difference between cars and bikes in this regard? And if so, why?

To answer your first question, yes, there’s a significant difference in all regards between cars and bikes, from obtaining the license, to maintaining it, all the way up to insurance. It’s a horse of a very different color.

As for why? Well, all vehicles are inherently, mostly equally dangerous. How they’re dangerous is a big one. Vehicles can be dangerous to their passengers, of course, and often are. Their bigger danger is inflicting that damage on another unsuspecting driver, pedestrian, or other thing they may collide with.

A motorcycle is more dangerous to its rider(s). Hitting anything stationary like walls, polls, buildings or trees in a car is something you stand a decent chance of surviving, as the giant metal box around you absorbs the shock. Doing so on a motorcycle isn’t so pretty.
You could also fall off one of them doing 60, or be hit by one of the idiots we mentioned earlier whom drive negligently. When a four wheel vehicle hits a motorcycle, it usually does damage the car, though often fairly superficially. The motorcycle and its rider(s) enjoy no such luck. Riding a motorcycle requires far more vigilant operation due to this risk, the dangers of larger vehicles, and a plague of drivers who don’t check for motorcycles. 

Check for motorcycles, America.

Insurance Pricing

Like we said, due to a lot of variables, there’s no way to predict with one hundred percent certainty what your price would be, even with a lot of criteria, as these prices tend to be calculated at the time by an agent, due to the impact of variables changing from time to time.

Thus, the pricing below is an average, or generality. They’re good enough to ballpark whether or not you have the budget to ride a motorcycle legally.

Cruiser or Touring Motorcycle

  • 25-60 yo, Good Driving Record, Liability Only – This going to be the least expensive scenario, as liability is the minimal legal coverage possible, just as with home or car insurance. It’s not hard to qualify for this insurance if you have a clean or at least good driving record. It may be possible to get it cheaper through your car insurance provider, if you’re in good standing with them as a customer. Est. Price: $100-$500/year
  • 25-60 yo, Good Driving Record, Full Coverage – Chances are, you’ll want to protect what you love, and that means additional coverage for repairs, replacements, theft and other such concerns, not just covering you legally in an accident. This makes the price go up a good bit, but for this particular customer bracket, less than you might expect. This too may be cheaper through your existing auto insurance provider. You may also cheapen it further via installing approved anti-theft devices, purchasing approved safety gear, and so on. Est. Price: $400-$800/year
  • 25-60 yo, Bad Driving Record, Full Coverage – A bad record can really haunt you with insurance. Not only can it be hard to get liability (due to having a record of being one), but the price of the full coverage will be considerably higher. We can’t really even give you a reliable estimate here, because it all depends on which provider you approach, what kind of bad driving record it is that you have, and what kind of mood the agent is in when they quote the price. Suffice it to say, it will be very expensive, possibly unmanageably so, and there aren’t really any lifehacks to make it cheaper. Et. Price: Impossible to guess, but tremendously high!

Crotch Rocket Sports Motorcycle

  • 16-24 yo, Good Driving Record, Full Coverage – A 16-year-old probably shouldn’t be on a motorcycle, especially not a crotch rocket of all things. At that age, if motorcycles are something they want to pursue as a hobby or way of life, they should be learning fundamentals on dirt bikes. However, in some states, it is legal under guardianship, and at 18, anyone can legally drive anything if they earn the license to do so. Inexperience (which for motorcycles often takes liability only off the table) raises prices quite a bit, and full coverage is itself quite expensive. Parents might be able to get prices lower if policies give them some of the responsibility, thus lowering the premiums a little, but really, this is just going to be expensive, no matter how you slice it. Est. Price: $900-$1200/year

Are you a long-time rider just seeing if you can find a better price for your motorcycle insurance? Are you someone who’s planning to get into biking? Did these prices make you rethink how interested you were? I’m curious to know, so subscribe to me on YouTube, and let me know somewhere in the comments if these prices are obscene, about what you expected, or quite a bit lower than you feared. Then stick around, if you still want to ride, I’ve got some great content to get you started with one of America’s great hobbies!

Motorcycle Basics: Before You Start Riding

Before even hopping on a motorcycle, it’s a smart decision to ride about the mechanics of the machine and familiarize yourself with key concepts. Having an idea in your head is going to come in handy when you’re faced with common beginner problems or later on when you’re on the road. 

That’s how you really get a handle on the motorcycle. Let’s get started. 

Motorcycle Basic Controls

Most motorcycles have the same controls; but you should always check the owner’s manual since the locations and shapes of some features will vary between makes and models. 

Motorcycle Basic Controls
motorcycle controls indicators and equipment

Motorcycle basic parts:

Handlebars

Right side: 

  • Electric start button – usually yellow or white.
  • Engine cut-off switch – above the electric start button. Usually red. 
  • Above the right throttle is the front brake lever.

Left side: 

  • Horn
  • Indicators (blinkers)
  • Choke
  • Headlight dip switch (high beams/low)
  • Clutch lever.

Between the handlebars, you find the ignition key. Ahead of the handlebars, you will also see the speedometer, odometer, and the tachometer. 

Left Side Handle/Throttle
motorcycle handlebar controls
Right Side Handle/Throttle
motorcycle throttle

Older Styles and Off-Road Bikes

Here’s some special considerations if you are on an older model or have an off-road bike: 

Fuel petcock – these are usually attached to the left near the carburetor. You can lean down to switch the gas tank when the fuel is getting low and you need to get to the gas station ASAP. 

Kick starter – off-road bikes have kick starters more commonly than street bikes. The kick starter works when you push down on the lever, turning the engine crank and causing the pistons to put pressure against the spark plug. Fuel ignites to start the engine. 

motorcycle shifting

What To Check Before Your Ride Every Time

Professional schools throughout the country use the acronym T-CLOCs to help you remember what you should check before heading on your bike. These checks should be done at least once a year, depending on how often you are riding your bike. If you ride every single day, you will have to use T-CLOCs much more often. 

  • T – Tires
  • C – (Main) Controls 
  • L – Lights & other controls 
  • O – Oil & other fluids 
  • C – Chassis
  • S – Stands

Tires

Check the air pressure and look at the condition of the tires. Are they worn down? Cracking? What is the condition of the spokes? Do you note any air leakage?

Next, look at the rims, bearings, seals, and casts. Does each brake work as it should? Does the bike fight you when turning or slowing down? 

Controls

The main controls include the handlebars, cables, hoses, levels, pedals, and throttle. Make sure the condition of the hoses is good and that everything is properly lubricated. The bars should be straight, and the throttle should move without resistance. Ensure the hoses aren’t cut or leaking. Any bulges, chafing, cracks or fraying of control cables needs to be repaired. 

Lights & Other Controls

This includes the battery, wiring, tail and signal lights, switches, blinkers, headlight, and reflectors. Is everything illuminating? Do the blinkers flash right? Is fraying or kinks in the wiring? Are the beams strong enough in the dark? 

Oil & Other Fluids

Check the gaskets and seals for any leaks. Ensure the oil level is good, along with other fluid levels. Check for sediment in the coolant reservoir. 

Chassis

The chassis is made up of the frame, suspension, chains, belts, and fasteners. Nothing should rattle. Nothing should be frayed, cracking, peeling, or chipping. Ensure that everything is tight and that there is tension in the belts and chains. 

Stands

Check for cracks or bends in the stands. Springs should hold their position without looseness. 

Basic Mechanics of a Motorcycle

Being that a motorcycle rides on two wheels, it is designed to lean to either side. Through balance and input from the ride, the motorcycle maintains an upright position. Many beginners are afraid that the bike is going to fall over if they lean too far, but that’s not the case. Through the forces of physics, such as friction, momentum, and gravity, it’s nearly impossible for a bike that’s going to straight to fall over. 

Engine

Another reason the motorcycle stays upright is the force of the pistons in the engine. These pistons move up and down, creating a force that helps the moving bike maintain it’s upward position. 

Tires

The tires of motorcycles are designed to be rounded, ensuring that as the bike rounds a corner, the same surface area of the tire remains on the ground. 

Chassis

For the beginner, all you need to know about the chassis is how to sit properly. When positioned properly on the bike, your wrists, knees, and back will be comfortable. You should also be able to engage your core and thigh muscles when using your body to maneuver. 

Clutch

Most bikes are manual transmission. The clutch keeps the bike moving but also controls the speed by using friction. Clutches are usually bathed in the same oiled the engine uses, so if you ride the clutch for a while, you won’t cause damage. However, some bikes are different, so refer to the owner’s manual. 

Wrapping It Up

For the new rider, your focus should be memorizing where the controls are and what certain parts of the bike do. By learning the general location, you can drive much more safely (and not while staring at the handlebars). 

Remember, the everything takes practice. In the same way you learned to ride a bicycle, you need some patience with riding a motorcycle. With that, you’re ready to begin! 

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What to Expect at a Beginner Rider Course

If you want to gain valuable experience, then you go to school. The same applies to motorcycle riding. When you sign up for the Beginner or Basic Rider courses that are available from multiple organizations throughout the U.S., you are taking a giant step forward. Here is what to expect: 

Pre-Course Assignment

The assignment that you receive is dependent on the organization that you sign up with. Make sure you do this work, because you will be better prepared for what is to come in the class. You are welcome to take notes, write down questions to ask the instructor, and familiarize yourself with the terminology. 

Necessary Items

When you have class, you should bring your student handbook, a notepad, pen, and some food items for snacks and lunch. These classes will last for most of the day, so be prepared for a full day of learning and moving. 

You should wear jeans with ankle boots, a long-sleeved shirt or jacket, full fingered gloves, and a DOT-legal helmet. Some schools will have helmets to borrow if you don’t have one. Keep in mind that you won’t be able to attend the class if you don’t have the appropriate gear. 

Also, regardless of the weather, the class will go on. Be prepared for cold mornings. Lightweight layers are best, because you can peel them off as you get hot. You should also wear a waterproof jacket, boots, and gloves, just in case it rains. 

What Happens In The Class

The class structure depends on statewide regulations and the course provider. However, most programs cover the same points. The courses are completed within two days, although you can sign up for more advanced courses later on. 

First Day

On the first day of the Basic Rider Course, you don’t want to be late. Anyone who arrives late has a direct impact on how much information you receive—and you don’t want to miss anything. Before you turn on the engine, you need to sign some liability papers and other paperwork. You might be asked to introduce yourself and talk about what experience you have on a motorcycle. It’s fine if you have zero experience, because the class is designed for beginners. Relax and enjoy the chance to make new riding buddies. 

The first half of the day talks about basic riding mechanics. This should be considered review if you did the pre-course assignment. If you jotted down any questions in your notes, this is the time you ask. 

The first riding exercise doesn’t send you off down the road with no assistance. You review the handlebar controls once again. You mount, dismount, and turn the vehicle on and off. You then get a feel of the manually-operated clutch. Gradually, you get familiarized with the motion of the bike 

The exercises thereafter include riding in a straight line, shifting gears, turning and cornering. The class is paced to allow for you to absorb this information is quickly or slowly as you need. 

Second Day

The second day builds off the operations you picked up on the first day. Now, you can get more technical and polish those skills. The session begins with practice of slow speed maneuvering, emergency braking, swerving, and more cornering. 

Once these drills are complete, you are assessed on your competency. The riding test will be the most stressful part of the day, because you need to successfully complete the exercises. If you don’t pass, you can retest for free; but if you fail twice, consider that riding a motorcycle might not be for you. 

Other Things To Expect

There’s a reason you sign a liability form. You could tip over or crash during the hands-on section of the course. Don’t worry, though. This, too, is practice. Once you have fallen a few times, you get the hang of controlling the bike. You will receive advice for staying upright from a professional instead of having to figure it out yourself. 

All in all, a Basic Rider Course is an excellent choice for all new riders who want to gain valuable experience before hitting the road. Though the course only lasts for two whole days, you learn much more than you probably expect. Go in with an open mind and leave riding your motorcycle. After that, the road is yours to master. 

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How To Start A Yamaha R6

Starting a motorcycle is easier than it used to be, thanks to technology. While there are various kinds of bikes, starting a Yamaha R6 or other fuel-injected motorcycles is more or less then same across the board. 

Here is how you start a fuel-injected motorcycle, like the Yamaha R6: 

How To Start A Yamaha R6

Starting The Engine of a Yamaha R6

You can find this information in the owner’s manual of your bike, too. Before starting the bike, make sure you have done the following: 

  1. The transmission is in neutral. 
  2. The transmission is in gear, the clutch is pulled, and the kickstand/sidestand is stowed. Some modern models, Yamaha included, have a safety feature that will prevent the bike from starting if the sidestand hasn’t been raised. 

Next, follow these steps precisely: 

  1. Insert the key into the ignition. 
  2. Turn the key to the ON position. Make sure the engine stop switch is set to the correct position. 
  3. Warning lights and indicator lights should illuminate momentarily then disappear if conditions are satisfactory. These lights include:
    1. Oil level 
    2. Coolant temperature
    3. Fuel level 
    4. Shift timing 
    5. Engine problems
    6. Immobilizer system 
    7. Shift the transmission into neutral. The light should come on. If not, you might have an electrical circuit problem. 
    8. Start the engine with the start switch. 
    9. In the event of failure, wait a few seconds and try another start. Don’t draw out the time trying to start the engine to preserve battery power. Do not extend for more than 10 seconds. 

General Instructions for a Fuel-Injected Motorcycle

Here’s some instructions to follow if you don’t have the make/model mentioned above: 

How To Start A Motorcycle

  1. Put the motorcycle in neutral. Neutral is always located between 1st and 2nd gear. 
  2. Put the key in the ignition if necessary.
    * Note: Fuel-injected motorcycles have an engine management system. This means you don’t have to worry about using the choke lever. Only a small amount of throttle will be needed, regardless of engine temperature. 
  3. Start pulling the clutch near the left handlebar. Some riders choose to pull the clutch and front brake simultaneously, but the choice is yours. 
  4. Press and hold the start button. You will find this on the right handlebar. Maintain your hold on the clutch. 
  5. The motorcycle should automatically catch and start. 
  6. If the engine doesn’t turn over and start immediately, you can try using the throttle while pressing the start button. Make sure you are holding the clutch. 
  7. Remember to never crank the engine for more than 10 seconds clips at a time. Otherwise, you’re wasting battery power. 
  8. You can slowly start to release the clutch.

    Now, you’re ready to ride!

How To Start A Yamaha R6

Final Thoughts

Unlike carburetor motors, fuel injection systems rarely fail. To prevent the pump from failing, do some routine maintenance. Get into the habit of listening to the bike and know what a healthy running engine sounds like. That way, if something unusual happens, you will be able to tell whether or not something is wrong with the pump fuse by sound alone. 

Modern fuel-injected motorcycles are easy to start. Follow the instructions in this article, and you will have no problem. 

For more information about how to start, ride, and care for your motorcycle, check out my YouTube channel. Hit the subscribe button for notifications whenever there’s an update.

Viking Cycle Bloodaxe Leather Motorcycle Jacket Review

When it comes to motorcycle jackets, you want something that balances the need to look like you own the road and enough protection to keep you from becoming part of the road. Viking Cycle, a brand based out of California, has been turning heads with their attention to detail and security in their full range of motorcycle clothing for men and women. The best part is the price tag.

Viking Cycle Bloodaxe Leather Motorcycle Jacket Review

Overview of the Bloodaxe Motorcycle Jacket

Out of the box, the Bloodaxe looks awesome and feels awesome. When the jacket first goes on, you’ll notice it’s a bit stiff—but it does loosen up with some wear, as good leather should. The zippers have solid construction, open and close smoothly, and lay well when you’re riding.

The biggest advantage of the Viking Cycle Bloodaxe isn’t the awesome name but the amount of storage. You won’t believe the amount of storage space you have with this jacket. There’s so much, it’s almost ridiculous.

There is a headphone wire system that you can feed into the collar of the jacket, earphone pockets, a media player pocket, cellphone pocket with 3 second access, 2 knife and pen pockets, an eyeglass pocket, a pocket designed to find a 10-inch tablet, extendable keyholder, and another pocket that can fit travel documents and your wallet. The pockets have a unique “no bulge” design, so even if you somehow managed to stuff every single compartment this jacket has, it will still look flat and sleek and not like a bubble jacket. Overall, it sits nice on the body and doesn’t feel stifling.

The sizing does run a little small. Someone around 5 foot, 10 inches, 180 pounds will fall into the M-L range, depending on how much you want to bundle up. If you take out the thermal lining or don’t want to wear a lot of clothing underneath, you might want to size down to prevent the jacket from floating on you.

Specifications

(listed adapted from vikingcycle.com)

  • Construction – Drum-dyed soft genuine cowhide leather (milled buffalo), padded shoulders, and Viking cycle level 1 removable “armor” on elbows and spine; two intake vents on the top of the shoulders and exhaust vents in the back
  • External Storage – 2 zippered chest pockets, 2 zippered side pockets, and a single sleeve pocket
  • Internal Storage – 2 secured zippered pockets and a secret compartment
  • Adjustability – waist snaps and sleeve zippers
  • Visibility – High viz stripes located on the back and shoulders

Pros

  • Sag and wrinkle resistant
  • Wind and water resistant
  • Abrasion resistant
  • A ton of hidden pockets on the internal side of the jacket
  • CE marked armor in the back and shoulders – comfortable and stays in place while riding around
  • Budget-friendly cost without a lack of quality and safety
  • Stylish design

Cons

  • Can be hot – the jacket has a thermal lining and is heavy, so it can be oppressive in the summertime even with the vents open. For that reason, it might not be ideal for moving in slower paced traffic;
  • CE armor level could be higher.

Warranty Info

Viking Cycle offers a 1 year manufacturer’s warranty on all of their products. This means that any defects or imperfections that you find are covered. The warranty does not cover wear and tear or damages caused from improper care.

This might raise some questions about durability, since some production errors or faults can take a few days or weeks to appear.

If you start to notice something odd going on with the jacket that you didn’t cause, you can contact Viking Cycle at info@vikingcycle.com with the order number and a photo of the defect to get an exchange or refund.

Conclusion

Honestly, for the quality of the jacket, you would expect to pay more for it than you do. The name might be a bit for metal than what this motorcycle jacket offers, but the sleekness of the design, paired with the sound construction and unheard of amount of storage makes it a clear winner. If you’re looking for a balance of style and safety without breaking your bank, I recommend the Viking Bloodaxe motorcycle jacket for your wardrobe. 

Looking for more details about choosing motorcycle jackets and other riding gear? Then check out and subscribe to my YouTube channel today!

What Every Rider Should Know About Road Rash

Road rash isn’t a punchline to a joke about bad motorcycle handling or old video game. Road rash, also called “friction burn,” is a serious injury. The severity of the wound is measured by degrees, the same as you would a chemical or fire burn. Since the skin is the largest organ of our bodies, getting road rash opens you up to other vulnerabilities, such as infection. But there is more to understand about road rash than these points.

Let’s look at this serious injury that can happen to anyone and learn how to classify and treat various types of road rash.

The Different Types of Road Rash

Not every bout of road rash is created equal. There are three main types of road rash:

  1. Avulsion – the skin is scraped away. Sometimes fat, muscle, and even bone will be exposed.
  2. Compression – where the body is caught between two objects, such as the motorcycle and the road. This results in bruising, broken bones, and damaged muscle.
  3. Open wound – usually require stitches. Open wound road rash might even require skin grafting.

Aside from the 3 different types, there are 3 degrees of damage:

  1. First degree – the first layer of the skin is red. Does not require medical treatment and will heal well enough on its own.
  2. Second degree – the first layer of skin, known as the epidermis, is broken. There can be bleeding and debris stuck in the wound. Usually requires little medical treatment and can heal with no scarring or lasting damage.
  3. Third degree – skin has been peeled away, leaving tissue, fat and sometimes bone exposed. Victims often need skin grafting.

The degrees of the crash depends on factors such as the force of the impact with the ground, the type of surface where the crash takes place, and whether safety gear was equipped.

Road rash will often occur in places that come in contact with the abrasive surface, either when attempting to catch oneself or when rolling or getting dragged. The outside of the legs, knees, palms, thighs, shoulders, and face are usually where road rash occurs.

Complications of Road Rash

Seek medical treatment immediately if you experience any of the following with road rash:

  • Severe pain
  • Inability to move affected region
  • Cuts on the face that are larger than a ¼ inch
  • Cuts on the body that are larger than a ½ inch
  • Bleeding doesn’t stop
  • Gaping wound remains opened with you relax the body
  • Fat is visible in the exposed tissues
  • Road rash is paired with other injuries, including possible concussion or broken bones.

Any open wound should be treated with antibiotics within six hours. Otherwise, you are at risk of infection.

Treatment and Recovery From Road Rash

Depending on the severity of the road rash, you can oftentimes treat it yourself. In that event, do the following:

  • Stop any bleeding.
  • Wash your hands with soap and water.
  • Rinse the wound thoroughly.
  • Wash the wound with soap, water, and then use some witch hazel.
  • Apply a topical antibiotic.
  • Bandage the wound.
  • Change the dressing.

Note: During the recovery, the skin will undergo healing from the deepest layers to the top. It might get scabs. Do not pick the scabs. Instead, continue changing the bandages and applying topical antibiotics. Once the oozing stops, you can use petroleum jelly to keep the skin supple and lessen the scarring.

If you end up going to the doctor because of a deep wound, the medical professional might recommend using ibuprofen, a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID), acetaminophen, or naproxen to deal with the pain.

Remember that because the skin has been opened by abrasion, you could be at risk for infection. Consider getting a tetanus shot. Tetanus boosters last 10 years, so if you had an injury where the epidermis or dermis of the skin has been injured, tetanus bacteria can enter the wound. At any time symptoms of infection begin, such as redness, swelling, warm or hot skin around the injury, tenderness, pain, or bloody ooze or yellowish pus, you could have an infection. Make sure to get to a doctor immediately.

Hopefully, you should now have an understanding of road rash and how serious it can be. Don’t ignore severe injuries after a fall. Drive safe and stay safe, so you can keep riding!

How To Use A Battery Tender

One of the most heartbreaking situations any car or motorcycle lover will experience is when you have beautiful riding or driving weather, are excited to hit the road, and the engine doesn’t turnover. The reason? Low battery power.

If you have a nifty gadget called a battery tender, you can recharge the battery and bring it back to life in no time. A battery tender is a friendlier alternative to traditional battery charges because of the technology housed within the device that is designed to prolong battery life.

Before you decide to buy a battery tender, though, let’s talk about what they are, what battery tenders do, and why you should have a maintenance charger for your motorcycle.

What Is A Battery Tender

What Is A Battery Tender?

Also known as “float chargers” or “maintenance chargers,” battery tenders were first created by the U.S. company Deltran in 1965. What separates battery tenders from plain ol’ chargers is that these devices provide a constant voltage supply but also are controlled by processors. In other words, they are able to refrain from charging faulty batteries, use spark free technology, and have green and red indicators that help you understand what’s happening in just a glimpse.

A battery tender is the opposite of a trickle charger, an unsophisticated, less expensive option. Though the purpose is similar, a trickle charger doesn’t have microprocessor technology that prevents it from damaging the battery if you leave it charging for an extended period of time. Furthermore, you can use a battery tender when you plan on storing your motorcycle for several weeks on end, like over winter.

Keep in mind that a battery tender is not able to jump-start a long-dead battery. When this happens, you need a trickle charger.

For this reason, you can think of a battery tender as a trickle charge with a brain—the exact words of the original manufacturer, Deltran. Of course, there is more than one brand of battery tender available on the market.

For example, the DieHard Battery Charger/Maintainer is similar to a Battery Tender that employs things like Float Mode Monitoring to charge more than just motorcycles. Whichever model you choose, just make sure they have features like auto adjust amperage to help maintain the charge, easy to read indicator lights, and float mode monitoring.

Another good feature to look for is a quick connect pigtail that helps you connect to the terminal with ease.

Using A Battery Tender

Using A Battery Tender

Operating a battery tender is easy. To use a one of these devices, you just plug it into any standard AC outlet and use it to transfer power to the 12-volt battery in your motorcycle.

When preparing to use the battery tender, keep the AC and DC cords away from the vehicle. Keep the charger off until you have everything plugged in.

Depending on the motorcycle, the connections might differ, so refer to your owner manual. Once you have the battery tender connected to the correct posts on the battery, you can switch it on.

You should see indicator lights turn on, such as:

Flashing red light – AC power and microprocessor is functioning properly. However, if the flashing continues, the voltage might be too low. Take a look to make sure the alligator clips are attached properly.
Steady red light – The clamps are properly place and power is being transferred to your battery. The light will remain red until the battery is fully charged.
Flashing green light – A flashing green light is often paired with a red light. This means the battery is about 80% charged and can be used.
Steady green light – The charge is complete. You can keep the battery tender attached to the battery to help maintain the life of the battery if it will be sitting for an extended period of time.

Quick note: If your battery has less than 3 volts, the battery tender won’t start. The battery should produce at least 3 volts. On the same note, if you have a standard 12 volt battery that is defunct and is producing less than 9 volts, the battery tender won’t work properly.

user manual battery tenderOther Considerations About Battery Tenders

Now, let’s clear up some frequently asked questions about battery tenders.

Many people ask, “Can I leave my motorcycle hooked up to a battery tender for a long time?” Although this was mentioned, it’s worth repeating: that’s what a battery tender is for. You can attach the tender and leave it alone without having to worry about the battery getting damaged. For example, you can go for a ride, return to the garage, attach the battery tender for a few days, then return two-three days later for another ride.

Second, you can also fire up the engine while the bike is hooked up to the battery tender. This is perfectly safe. If it’s on maintenance mode, though, you will want to detach the bike before starting it up.

Takeaway

Trickle chargers bring dead batteries back to life while battery tenders prevent batteries from losing power during periods of inactivity. Whether you use your bike every other day or less frequently, a battery tender will preserve the life of the battery to ensure your motorcycle is ready to ride whenever you need to hit the road. The straightforward usage makes it a wonderful investment for every motorcycle enthusiast.

Now that you’ve done you’re reading, it’s time to check out the motorcycle videos on my YouTube channel. Don’t forget to subscribe and receive notifications so you never miss an update!

Viking Cycle Motorcycle Rain Gear Review

If you’re a biker, you’ve undoubtedly heard of Viking. They’re a leading name in motorcycle gear, making some of the best coats, packs and much more. Did you know they also make the best motorcycle rain gear?

Riding motorcycle in the rain comes with a host of problems, not all of which have to do with road safety. I you live in an area that runs the gamut of climates and weather, and you like to depend on your bike for transportation, you need to be prepared.

When it comes time to buy your motorcycle rain suit, you want the best motorcycle rain gear you can get, and unsurprisingly, that’s going to come from Viking – who else?

What is Motorcycle Rain Gear?

Rain gear for motorcycle riding consists of one or two components – at least a jacket/top, and often, a pair of easily-removed pants. The material used is water-resistant, often nylon or poly-synthetic in nature, capable of sloughing off the built up water, and helping to fight the cold, damp wind you’ll be plowing into at high speed.

Not all rain gear for motorcycle riding is made equally, and Viking, already known for their excellent jackets, pants and packs, have combined art and material sciences to produce the best rain suit for motorcycle riders that money can buy.

Not only will it keep you warm and dry, but it’s remarkably easy to clean – count on mud and dirty tar-laden water splashing on you if you’re interested in riding motorcycle in rain.

OVERVIEW

Is it Lame to Wear Rain Gear on a Motorcycle?

You like to be respected by your fellow bikers, and there’s nothing wrong with that. If you’re going to ride, you want to ride in style and comfort. This has led some motorcycle riders to leave rain gear for motorcycle riding out of their repertoire in the past.

However, there is nothing lame or uncool about rain gear – the dirty water flying up off the road, and the rain itself, will ruin a leather jacket or a good pair of pants, and the high wind can result in you catching a cold, or even the flu or pneumonia.

Besides, the best motorcycle rain suit designs are quite stylish, matching any rider’s taste in bike and in the rest of their ensemble.

You don’t want to arrive at your destination soaking wet, as wet clothes is one of the most uncomfortable things one can imagine. On a colder, rainier day, you can become very ill if you allow yourself to get wet like this, and the wind will chew right through you as well.

Safety on a motorcycle isn’t just about riding properly and wearing your helmet. It’s about protecting your whole body from the elements, and that includes rain.

OVERVIEW

Viking Cycle Rain Gear offers you the freedom and comfort of movement for every biker’s needs in heavy rainy weather. The color options are bright for stronger visibility, along with reflective striping on the jacket to make sure you get to and from each destination safe and sound. Soft polyester outer shell with PVC packaging; our jacket has a Full-Length Zipper with a Velcro Strom Flap as well. In addition, we’ve added a head shield on the calf for added comfort and safe riding.

Ride through the rain while keeping yourself warm and dry by using these quality rain suits. While using this Viking Cycle Rain Suit you’ll be able to ride during heavy rain while knowing that your leathers under the rain suit will stay nice and dry. This rain suit has built-in reflective fabric on the pants and jacket to give you better night time visibility, keeping you dry and safe while you ride during bad weather. 

What is the Best Motorcycle Rain Gear?

Viking’s rain suit for motorcycle riders is a top of the line, two-piece design. The stylish exterior is made of the latest in hydrophobic materials, sloughing off water, even gritty, muddy water from the road. The adjustable sleeves and collar of the jacket make it a one-size-fits-all solution that anyone with anybody build can wear comfortably and with pride.

The pants fasten to the jacket easily, creating a complete seal against the elements. With Velcro, it can easily be adjusted while providing a snug, closed fit that will never jam, rust or corrode.

The advanced material also breathes, with an advanced two-way thermal lining that can keep heat in against the cold, while also allowing breathing so summer rains don’t cook you in your own sweat and heat.

With an attractive gray/black style, it provides a timeless look that’s anything but lame or unfashionable, matching any bike, and any rider, be they young or old. If you’re interested in riding a motorcycle in rain, this is definitely the gear for you. Now you can enjoy those cross-country rides and be prepared for any weather this beautiful country can throw at you, and know you’ll arrive safe, dry, and feeling just fine.

To learn more about Viking’s other awesome biking gear, or about riding a motorcycle in the rain safely, subscribe to my YouTube channel today. I have some awesome things I want to show you, and this is just a taste!

TECHNOLOGY

Viking Cycle’s Rain Gear Fabric is a 100% 600D Polyester coated by PU (polyurethane). The 600D Polyester coated by PU, is also wind and water resistant so it will provide great protection against cold wind and rain and it will not sag and creates less wrinkle overtime. The fabric is light weight but highly resilient against abrasions to provide more resistance between the body and the road for your protection, and also stands against wear and tear for product durability.

Viking Cycle
Viking Cycle

Viking Moto Motorcycle Backpack Review

Viking Moto Motorcycle Backpack Review

Let’s all agree that the biggest problem with our bikes being daily transportation is the lack of hauling capacity.

So, just as in our scholastic days, backpacks to the rescue! But not just any backpack will do. We’re out in the elements, we’re hauling heavier stuff than a few books, and of course, we don’t want to look like a vagabond. That’s where awesome designs like the Viking Bag’s Motorcycle Backpack shine.

This isn’t your high school backpack, oh no. This Cordura backpack features a modern classic look with leather trim and an understated aesthetic that will match your jacket and your bike, no matter what type of bike you like to ride.

Let’s take a closer look at this awesome bag, and how it can make your daily rides so much cooler.

Shot and Edited by Shaun Maddox
https://shaunmaddox.com/
https://www.instagram.com/shaunmaddox/

Viking cycle

Construction

As I said, this backpack is made of Cordura, a modern marvel of material sciences that fits comfortably on your body, while not being a floppy, frail backpack. With dimensions of 18.5”x12.5”x5”, you can carry groceries, personal items, or personal items with ease and comfort no other bag can offer.

Need more organization, or to haul some electronics with you? Well, Viking’s completely onboard with 21st-century life, including a laptop sleeve and stretchy, sewn in pockets for organizing your styluses, connection cords, your phone, and anything else delicate and vital you may need to carry.

That’s not even the coolest thing this bag can do. We all know how important our helmet is for safety, but when we get off our bike, it becomes a cumbersome nuisance to carry around or somehow safely secure to our bike. With this Viking bag, that’s not an issue, thanks to the stretchy helmet lining which can hold pretty much any helmet of any size no problem.

Gone are any excuses, whatsoever, to forego your helmet. You know who you are!

Viking cycle

The Feel

I took one of these out for a day ride, that is about 6 hours round trip, to go shopping in another area (I usually wouldn’t, but it’s a good field test for gear like this). By the time I reached my destination, I almost forgot this bag was even attached to me, and that was with a heavy laptop and backup battery in my bag.

I did, however, notice that as I took the bag off when going into a restaurant, that my shirt was a bit damp, as I’d sweat from where it blocked air flow to an extent. However, having had other bags leave the back of my shirt completely soaked through, I’d call this a considerable improvement in that department. Given this bag is weatherized, it kind of can’t have the airflow of something mesh, and I’d rather sweat a tiny bit while having my stuff protected from the elements.

What really caught my attention was the lack of soreness or discomfort across my shoulders, neck and upper back. I’m a broad-shouldered fellow, which means most backpacks with any weight, tend to tug on muscles and leave me sore or even numb – the broad design of the straps both across the shoulders and waist, didn’t cause that problem at all.

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • This is an attractive bag that doesn’t scream “hobo” or “kid”, with a professional yet casual aesthetic that matches any jacket well enough.
  • It’s weatherized, and will protect everything with gusto.
  • It’s very comfortable, and the strap designs don’t cause soreness, discomfort or circulation problems.
  • I can carry my electronics in an organized fashion – this modern thinking is lost on a lot of biking gear companies.
  • The helmet lining does the biking community two great services by making our helmets no longer a nuisance, and eliminating any excuses for anyone to foolishly leave their helmets behind.

Cons

  • Being weatherized, you will sweat a little bit, it can’t be helped.
  • While attractive, the black may not be everyone’s taste.
  • I know a few hefty guys who might find the fit of this bag, adjustable as it is, to be a bit precarious.

ADDITIONAL DETAILS

  • Heavy duty Cardura Construction.
  • Reflective piping for additional night time visibility.
  • Built in helmet hood.
  • Fits most 15″ laptops in padded compartment.
  • Detailed organizer for your keys, wallet and other small items.
  • Protective eyewear pocket.
  • Duraflex® buckles throughout for added strength.
  • Audio Ready.
  • Height and width adjustable sternum strap.
  • Aerodynamic molded body.

Conclusion

I like this bag. It’s not perfect, and I can see some room for improvement in variety of color schemes as well as a bit more adjustability in the straps for bigger people. I’d also like to see another model that’s stretchier, for if I have more stuff to haul back.

Nonetheless, this is a nice bag, and if you ride your bike for daily things like I do in decent weather, you owe it to yourself to give a bag like this a try!

Viking Cycle – Warlock Textile Motorcycle Jacket Review

Finding a Great Entry-Level Cycle Jacket - Viking Warlock Jacket Review

When critiquing motorcycle jackets, we have a tendency to judge them by the standards and needs of long-term, experienced cyclists. The unfortunate truth is that, for those just getting into motorcycling, these criteria may be a good bit different. For one thing, beginners will tend to spend somewhat less time on their bikes as they’re still getting a feel for them, and they’re less likely to be out there in the more extreme temperatures of high summer and mid-winter. 

This means that some forgiveness in fitting and materials is called for when looking at a prospective first motorcycle jacket. In the case of the VikingCycle’s Warlock jacket, this may work out pretty well.

To purchase, click here:
http://shrsl.com/1bl7e
Use Coupon Code Runthacity to receive 12% off your order!
 
Viking cycle

The Look Of The Warlock Jacket

Well, let’s be honest with ourselves, we’re always going to demand that our jacket look really cool. It won’t do to look unstylish on our bikes, no matter if we’re a novice or a years-experienced rider. If the jacket doesn’t look good, nothing else matters. Maybe this isn’t the most prioritized way to think of things, but that’s just how it is.

While not the classic cruiser style so iconic in pop culture, this jacket does have a very modern classic vibe to it. It achieves a contemporary, unassuming but stylish look that blends many of the safety and comfort features of sport/street jackets, with the gentle form hugging and sleek nature that makes those cruiser jackets so beloved in the first place.

Moving forward, this even blend of these two styles will probably be somewhat timeless, which gives this jacket a unique future proof nature.

Comfort in a motorcycle jacket is a delicate balance. You don’t want to feel claustrophobic in the jacket, but at the same time, something too loose would have obvious problems. Similarly, you don’t want it to feel too bulky or heavy, but you want to feel like you’ve got something on. Finally, you want this balanced comfort to also provide good wind-cutting power, especially when it’s chilly out. Remember, the faster you go, the colder that air is going to be. 

This jacket checks all but one of these boxes rather nicely. I felt like I had a solid jacket on, but I never felt claustrophobic, encumbered nor weighed down by it. The adjustable sleeves and collar meant that I didn’t feel like my circulation was cut off, but it still sealed me up well enough against the elements. 

Unfortunately, the wind-cutting power of this jacket isn’t phenomenal, even with the liner in. It’s far from the worst, but in particularly chilly weather, the wind is still going to bite right into you with this jacket. 

Motorcycle Jacket Safety

Safety is of course a big concern, especially for a beginner. This jacket manages to be pretty well-padded and abrasion-resistant, without feeling cumbersome. Granted, it’s not as fortified as a racing jacket, but I felt very safe in this jacket, especially thanks to the waist zipper that fastens to pants to provide a unified layer of protection. 

It definitely passes my standards for safety, no question there. 

VikingCycle’s Signature Rain Gear Fabric is a 100% 600D Polyester coated by PU (polyurethane). The 600D Polyester coated by PU, is also wind and water resistant so it will provide great protection against cold wind and rain and it will not sag and creates less wrinkle overtime. The fabric is light weight but highly resilient against abrasions to provide more resistance between the body and the road for your protection, and also stands against wear and tear for product durability.

Bells and Whistles

Finally, we come to the additional accoutrements this jacket offers. It’s not the most elaborate design out there, but it’s not without its charms. 

  • Large zipper tabs make it easy to operate the zippers with gloves on – something that can be exquisitely frustrating. 
  • Plenty of inside pockets for your phone, your wallet, etc. where they’re protected from the elements and impacts. 
  • Removable liner makes this jacket comfortable for warm and cool riding. 

Warlock Jacket Textile Motorcycle Jacket Overview

Viking cycle

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • This is an affordable jacket, especially for the quality, which is a major deciding factor for the beginner motorcyclist. 
  • The inside pockets are a nice touch. 
  • The neutral, non-aggressive style is timeless, contemporary and pairs with any style of bike. 
  • The zippers are phenomenal.

Cons

  • Removable liner takes most of the inner pockets with it, and doesn’t cut wind well. 
  • Velcro is used in stead of button clasps – this is a noisy material that wears out and accumulates “fuzz”. 
  • There are synthetic materials in the cuffs that may be less durable. 

Warranty Information

VikingCycle takes the highest pride to provide the best motorcycle gear craftsmanship and material in the world. We always stand behind all our product quality. If you experience any manufacturing defects on any of our items, please let us know and return it for a replacement within 1 year of purchase.

This warranty does not cover any item damage due to normal wear and tear or improper care. Normal wear and tear is unavoidable and it is a sign that the product has been worn, such as small scratches or color change.

To claim any manufacturing defect warranty and to get your replacement as soon as possible, please let us know by emailing us at info@vikingcycle.com with your order number and a photo of the product defect.

Conclusion

This jacket’s not perfect, but then, is anything ever truly perfect? As a seasoned rider, I’d personally purchase this jacket. It is affordable, comfortable and a stylish first jacket for a beginner? I’d definitely be happy recommending the Warlock jacket. 
 
To purchase, click here:
http://shrsl.com/1bl7e
Use Coupon Code Runthacity to receive 12% off your order!
 
To learn more about choosing the ideal motorcycle jacket for your needs, subscribe to my YouTube channel today!
 
Viking cycle
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