Choosing kit (November 2006)

  • How to make your bike go better on the cheap

    30 November 2006 by MCN Technical Staff

    How to make your bike go better on the cheap

    Nothing is ever free is it? No – but some things come pretty damn close. After laying out for the price of a bike and all the associated riding gear, anything which helps boost the bike’s and the...

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  • How to keep your tyres in good health

    30 November 2006 by MCN Technical Staff

    How to keep your tyres in good health

    But there’s nothing to look after on a tyre… Not true. Imagine what would happen if one of your tyres failed to work at 70mph. Anything that keeps tyres in tip-top condition is worth every penny or...

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  • How to revive your riding gear

    30 November 2006 by Daniel Thornton

    How to revive your riding gear

    Why bother? Because you’ve paid good money for it and servicing it will keep it in tip-top condition for years to come. Remember the feeling when you first wore that new helmet, jacket or suit? You...

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  • How to fit soft luggage

    30 November 2006 by MCN Technical Staff

    How to fit soft luggage

    Why choose soft luggage? Soft luggage is cheap, easy to use and once you’ve invested in some, you’ll be able to use it on almost any bike (although soft panniers don’t work well with all exhausts).

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  • How to secure your garage against thieves

    30 November 2006 by MCN Technical Staff

    How to secure your garage against thieves

    If a thief really wants my bike, he’ll get it won’t he? Any form of theft deterrent is a big step towards keeping hold of your bike, especially when it’s locked in a garage. Yes, it’s true to say out...

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  • How to buy riding kit that fits

    30 November 2006 by MCN Technical Staff

    How to buy riding kit that fits

    What should I look for when buying gear? When it comes to leather, it will eventually break in to become comfortable. It becomes so because it stretches or the material breaks down from continual...

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  • How to change your sparkplugs

    30 November 2006 by MCN Technical Staff

    How to change your sparkplugs

    What am I dealing with? Spark plugs are fed voltage from a bike’s ignition system, which creates the vital spark to ignite the air/fuel mix in the engine. If your spark plugs aren’t fulfilling this...

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  • How to fit a flyscreen

    29 November 2006 by MCN Technical Staff

    How to fit a flyscreen

    What is a flyscreen? Flyscreen, headlight cowl, bikini fairing and handlebar fairing are different names for the same thing: a small fairing which deflects windblast, hopefully up and over the rider’s...

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  • How to prepare your bike for winter

    29 November 2006 by MCN Technical Staff

    How to prepare your bike for winter

    Make an early start Winter roads gritting and low temperatures that cause condensation and allow moisture to hang around is a perfect recipe for corrosion. Your bike will constantly be...

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  • How to check & replace brake discs

    29 November 2006 by MCN Technical Staff

    How to check & replace brake discs

    My discs look OK, so why check them? Looks can be deceiving. It’s not only high mileage bikes that will suffer from worn or damaged discs – today’s sports bikes can suffer just as badly if regularly...

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  • How to keep warm in cold weather

    29 November 2006 by MCN Technical Staff

    How to keep warm in cold weather

    Wrap up well, ride well Staying warm while riding is important. Cold affects concentration; it also induces tension and inhibits mobility. But if you’re warm and comfy, it’s possible to enjoy...

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  • How to choose and fit a rear hugger

    29 November 2006 by MCN Technical Staff

    How to choose and fit a rear hugger

    Why fit a hugger? By closely following the contours of the rear tyre, a hugger acts as a protective shroud, preventing rain and mud from being flung from the tyre on to the rear shock/underside of the...

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  • How to balance your wheels

    29 November 2006 by MCN Technical Staff

    How to balance your wheels

    Do modern wheels still need balancing then? However precise the manufacture of wheels, tyres and discs is, mass-production means no item is perfect. Tyres and wheels can be out of alignment, out of...

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  • How to change your own tyres

    29 November 2006 by MCN Technical Staff

    How to change your own tyres

    Why should I do it? Because any project that involves just you will save you money. If you buy mail order tyres at a bargain price, you’ll have to find the nearest tyre-fitting service, and nine times...

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  • How to pass your MoT

    29 November 2006 by MCN Technical Staff

    How to pass your MoT

    Why bother? A recent survey among UK MoT test stations showed 20% of all test failures were due to a blown bulb. Picking up on a possible reason for a fail notice before the test could save you the...

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  • How to build a toolkit for your bike

    29 November 2006 by MCN Technical Staff

    How to build a toolkit for your bike

    But my bike already has a toolkit under the seat Whether you strip and rebuild bikes from spindle-to-spindle, dabble in home servicing, or simply adjust your bike’s chain, tools are a bike and man’s...

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  • How to put your bike on a diet

    29 November 2006 by MCN Technical Staff

    How to put your bike on a diet

    Unsprung advantage The lower the overall weight of your motorcycle, the more acceleration you’ll get out of each horsepower your engine produces. But it doesn’t stop there. Weight removed from the...

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  • How to fit aftermarket bodywork

    29 November 2006 by MCN Technical Staff

    How to fit aftermarket bodywork

    Why bother? Genuine bodywork is expensive to replace. A simple topple over on the road when turning around can cost more in damage repair than a whole pattern bodywork kit. Trackdays increase the...

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  • How to set suspension sag

    29 November 2006 by MCN Technical Staff

    How to set suspension sag

    What is sag? Loaded sag is the name given to the amount of suspension travel used up when the bike settles with a rider on board. To alter the sag you need to adjust how much the springs in the forks...

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  • How to service your clutch

    29 November 2006 by MCN Technical Staff

    How to service your clutch

    I didn’t know my clutch needed servicing... Every part of a bike needs some TLC at some point to keep it working correctly. This can vary from a simple adjustment, to a complete rebuild – your bike’s...

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  • How to check and replace wheel bearings

    29 November 2006 by MCN Technical Staff

    How to check and replace wheel bearings

    Why bother? Worn or damaged wheel bearings will cause: (1) ill handling with weaves and wobbles, a bit like a flat tyre, and (2) ill health if a wheel bearing collapses and the wheel cocks to one side...

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  • How to fit clip-on bars

    29 November 2006 by MCN Technical Staff

    How to fit clip-on bars

    Why bother? If your bike has standard fitment one-piece handlebars and you want a tucked-in race-style riding position, then lower clip-on bars, which bolt directly to the fork legs, are the answer to...

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  • How to lube and protect your bike

    29 November 2006 by MCN Technical Staff

    How to lube and protect your bike

    Why bother? The importance of this job can’t be overestimated. Over a period of time – not long with the UK’s weather – various components and controls stiffen and then seize. It could be from dry,...

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  • How to fit rearsets

    29 November 2006 by MCN Technical Staff

    How to fit rearsets

    Why bother? Rearsets were originally the preserve of racers who wanted higher-mounted footpegs for greater ground clearance. But they’re also the best way of tailoring your bike to fit you perfectly,...

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  • How to protect your bike from crash damage

    29 November 2006 by MCN Technical Staff

    How to protect your bike from crash damage

    But I’m not going to crash… However experienced and competent a rider you are, chances are that at some point your bike is going to get damaged from: a) falling off the sidestand, b) losing your...

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  • How to service your brake calipers

    29 November 2006 by MCN Technical Staff

    How to service your brake calipers

    Why bother? Because it could save your life. Most routine services don’t include cleaning and servicing the calipers unless the brake pads need changing or there happens to be a problem with them such...

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  • How to replace your rear shock

    29 November 2006 by MCN Technical Staff

    How to replace your rear shock

     Why would I want to replace my rear shock? Either because your current shock is leaking/worn out through age, or can’t cope with your weight/riding style with the available adjustment. Or simply...

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  • How to fit a sports exhaust system

    29 November 2006 by MCN Technical Staff

    How to fit a sports exhaust system

    Why bother? By fitting a sports exhaust you can make your bike several kilos lighter, and better looking too. Sports exhausts are also designed to optimise a bike’s power delivery, improving the...

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  • How to fit a Scottoiler

    29 November 2006 by MCN Technical Staff

    How to fit a Scottoiler

    Why bother? Because one of the biggest arse-aches of owning a bike with chain drive is keeping it correctly lubricated come rain or shine. Thick aerosol lube doesn’t penetrate the rollers well,...

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  • How to keep your bike looking like new

    29 November 2006 by MCN Technical Staff

    How to keep your bike looking like new

    Why bother? Because you’ve paid good money for your bike and if it starts to look tatty people will tag you as a lazy idiot. A well-kept bike will always catch a buyer’s eye, and gives you ammunition...

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  • How to change your coolant

    29 November 2006 by MCN Technical Staff

    How to change your coolant

    Why bother? Engine coolant performance deteriorates over time. This can be caused by a build-up of aluminium corrosion or a change in the fluid to coolant ratio when periodically topped up. Most...

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  • How to service your rear suspension

    29 November 2006 by MCN Technical Staff

    How to service your rear suspension

    Why bother? The linkage is a vital part of your bike’s suspension system, but as it’s sat close to the road it’s exposed to the elements. If you ride during the winter, salt and grit will be doing...

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  • How to change your engine oil and filter

    28 November 2006 by MCN Technical Staff

    How to change your engine oil and filter

    Why bother? Oil breaks down, it loses its viscosity from excessive heat. It also gets contaminated from unburned fuel and debris such as clutch plate material and swarf from meshing gears. The oil...

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  • How to replace a chain and sprockets

    28 November 2006 by MCN Technical Staff

    How to replace a chain and sprockets

    Why bother? A bike’s chain and sprockets are prone to wear and tear because they are: a) exposed to the elements, as well as the effects of grit, dust, surface water, or all three b) often...

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  • How to fit heated handlebar grips

    28 November 2006 by MCN Technical Staff

    How to fit heated handlebar grips

    Why bother? Because cold and wet weather plays hell with any body parts that aren’t insulated. And when it does you’re on dangerous ground: reactions get slow and tiredness quickly engulfs you. It’d...

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  • How to fit braided brake hoses

    28 November 2006 by MCN Technical Staff

    How to fit braided brake hoses

    Why bother? Your bike’s standard black, flexible, ugly hoses are prone to bulging, especially with age when the material perishes. Try this to see what we mean: wrap your hand round the existing hose,...

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