Motorcycle road trip checklist
Motorcycling road trips can, without doubt, be a whole lot of fun. There is nothing that brings joy to the heart and soul better than the feeling of the wind rushing by one’s body while cruising at a steady pace down a scenic highway. You could, as an example, take a ride from the famed Daytona beach on the Atlantic Ocean of Florida, to Clearwater in the Gulf of Mexico. But what preparations do you need to make before embarking on such a journey?
- Make sure that your tires are up to the job
The first thing that you need to do, before embarking on a motorcycling trip, is make sure that your bike’s tires are in good condition. What you do not want to do is get stranded in the middle of nowhere with a blown tire. Tires are important on any vehicle; they are what stands between you and the hard tarmac, and you do not want to become another grim motorcycling statistic by neglecting to take care of yours. If the journey is long enough, you may find it better to replace your worn tires with a new set before proceeding.
- Tire Pressure
Another thing that you need to take care of before embarking on a long motorcycling road trip is tire pressure. It’s not enough to, as we have just mentioned, make sure that the tires that are on your ride are not worn out. On top of this, you also need to make sure that they are inflated to the right pressure. Tyre pressure has a direct bearing on a bike’s handling and performance, which, in turn, makes it an important aspect in motorcycling safety.
- Chain Tension and Wear
The chain is one of the most important components on any motorcycle. By acting as the link between the output shaft of the transmission, and the rear wheels, the chain is what enables a bike to travel from one point to the other. Unfortunately for something that’s this important, motorcycle chains can, if not taken proper care of, become a weak link and an impediment in your quest to go on that long dreamed of motorcycle road trip.
That is why it is so important for you to, before embarking on your trip, to check both the tension and wear of your bike’s chain. Checking the chain’s wear is easy enough. All that you need to do is move it sideways on the rear sprocket to get a clearer idea of the kind of life that it still has in it. Where necessary, you may have to replace your bike’s chain before embarking on your trip. This is simple enough for DIY enthusiasts. Even if you can’t do the job yourself, having your chain changed should only take a little time at your nearest garage.
- Change the oil on your bike
Checking the oil level on your motorbike is another to the important tasks that you need to have covered before embarking on your road trip. As is the case with any other motor vehicle, engine oil is what keeps all the parts moving as they were designed to in your bike. Without it, that motorcycle which you are so proud of could soon turn into an inexpensive hunk of useless parts.
How often do you need to change the oil in a motorcycle?
Motorcycle oil change durations vary depending on the bike’s manufacturer and the type of oil that is recommended for the motorbike. However, as a general rule, you need to change the oil in your bike every 3000 mile for normal oil, and every 5000 for synthetic oil.
This will all depend on your riding style, of course. Generally, if you have an aggressive riding style, or have been abusing your motorcycle by following the motocross circuit, then you will actually need to have the oil changed more often.
- Spark Plugs
Spark plugs are another important component that is often neglected as people embark on bike road trips. However, due to their importance, you actually need to make sure that the ones that are on your bike are up to the job before you even embark on your quest. What’s more, you also need to make sure that you have one or two extra ones in your saddle before taking your bike on a cross country trip. They won’t take much space, yet, they could save you a whole lot of trouble should you ever need them while in the middle of nowhere.
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