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New rider engine layouts: V-twins

MCN, 03 September 2010 17:24

The V-twin engine has a long and noble history in motorcycling as it was adopted early on by manufacturers like Harley and Indian because it allowed two cylinders to be bolted into the narrow, bicycle-type frames of the early 1900s. That same advantage of a narrow engine holds true today, and V-twins come in a variety of degrees, from 90 ...

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How do you know your tyres are warmed up?

MCN, 20 August 2010 18:00

With your contact on terra firma reliant on two hand-sized patches of rubber it’s hard to know when your bedded-in tyres are up to operating temperature, but there are a couple of factors that will enable you to know without stopping at the side of the road and feeling them with your hand. The first is the weather and time ...

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Sorting out your confidence

MCN, 18 June 2010 14:06

Confidence isn't just a 'preference of the habitual voyeur' as Blur would have it, but arguably one of the most vital parts of a rider's armoury. Building it up as you start out, without straying into over-confidence is vital. The first thing is you need to have confidence in your bike. That means keeping it properly maintained with tyres inflated ...

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How to push a motorcycle

Chris Dabbs, 04 June 2010 14:57

It’s hard to believe when you are tipping your bike into a bend with the merest fingertip pressure on a bar, that your bolide weighs a couple of hundred kilos. But when you’ve got to push it into the garage past the car and the kids’ bikes that weight is all too apparent. The keys to moving your bike at ...

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New Rider: What to do if your bike stops but has fuel

Chris Dabbs, 26 March 2010 16:42

You are out on your first touring holiday having diligently loaded up your bike with all the stuff you think you’ll need, packing a tankbag to the gunnels with maps, spare gloves, waterproofs, travel documents you name it, and then your bike packs up on you, as though it’s run out of gas. Checking the fuel level shows it to ...

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New rider: How to get your bike lowered

MCN, 18 February 2010 12:12

Don't let a tall seat height put you off buying the bike of your dreams - there are a number of solutions out there for shorties or those who simply want more slow speed confidence. One such option is the service offered by SMC Bikes. They claim to "help you get your feet planted firmly on the floor, from simple seat lowering, ...

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How to sell your first bike: essential cleaning tips

MCN, 10 February 2010 16:42

If you've only owned one bike, then you'll have never sold one before. Here are a few handy 'sprucing up' tips that can sway potential buyers when they come to view your machine... 1. Use WD40 liberally. Spray it on metal and plastic and then rub like mad until the nasty gunk comes off. You need to be patient and ...

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Winter riding: keep your distance

MCN, 29 January 2010 12:16

If you’re riding through your first winter, one thing that often gets forgotten is the need to leave more space between you and the vehicle in front. If your ABS-equipped car is the only experience you have of wet braking performance, then you don’t want to put your Kawasaki ER-5’s stoppers to the test while you’re up the chuff of ...

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How to tune your bike

Chris Dabbs, 08 January 2010 17:15

If you've had your new bike for a while and you want to start 'tuning' it, one of the simplest ways is to alter the gearing by changing the front/rear sprockets. If you lower the gearing that will improve acceleration as you use more of the higher gears more of the time. If you raie the gearing that will give ...

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New rider: How to filter safely

Chris Dabbs, 10 December 2009 16:44

There's a great deal of pleasure to be had from filtering past hundreds of frustrated car and lorry drivers. You are in charge of your own destiny and over time you are saving days of your life to do something more useful then clogging up the roads. But you are much more vulnerable when you venture out into that clear ...


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