As the motorcycling season gathers pace, the experts at Haynes are offering practical advice for riders preparing for touring and long trips.
Whether you’re riding to a bike race or simply touring on two wheels, there are several simple ways you can increase safety and comfort.
Penny Cox, Motorcycle Editorial Manager for Haynes Publishing, renowned for motorcycle manuals and books, says:
“The cold spring has not been ideal for bikers, but with the weather getting warmer and bikes coming out of hibernation it is essential to make sure your maintenance is up to scratch.
“Simple things like checking tyre pressures and adjusting suspension will improve safety as well as fuel efficiency and general comfort.
“And if your bike isn’t generally used for long trips, or you’ve owned the bike for only a short time and don’t know its history, it’s worth spending a few hours preparing for the journey.”
Haynes top 10 tips for bike maintenance and safety:
- If applicable, set the suspension to suit the increased load of a passenger and/or luggage
- Adjust the tyre pressures if you’re touring two-up and also if you’re loaded up with luggage. Remember that low tyre pressures will have an adverse effect on the bike’s handling and fuel economy and take your own tyre pressure gauge with you so that you don’t have to rely on those in filling stations.
- Make sure the battery is in good condition - this is something that often gets missed in the basic maintenance routine.
- Consider taking a few extra tools to those contained in the bike’s toolkit.
- If you have room, an aerosol tyre sealant is worth taking, as are a few cable-ties, a small roll of duct tape and a can of WD40.
- If your bike has chain drive, give the chain a good clean and apply fresh lube. Also make sure its tension is correct.
- Go around the bike checking the tightness of all fasteners, particularly those which form fixings for luggage.
- Avoid adding new accessories immediately before a long trip, it is always important to thoroughly test new kit before setting off on a long ride
- If the bike is likely to be kept in a public place overnight, take a good lock with you to ensure its security.
- If you’re not confident about fixing the bike, sign up for breakdown assistance.
The information on this page is supplied courtesy of Haynes Publishing, please credit accordingly if you intend to use it. For more information or to request a review copy please contact Spirit PR on 0117 944 1415 or email Haynes PR
Haynes Manuals is the world's leading publisher of illustrated workshop car and motorcycle manuals, as well as producing manuals on a wide range of DIY, leisure and lifestyle subjects. These will continue to include motoring and motorsport related subjects.