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New rider

Welcome the the MCN New Rider section, where we'll help you navigate your way from complete biking novice to confident beginner. If you're unsure how to begin your journey onto two wheels, the diagram below is for you.

New Rider

  • Best RS250 tyres for road and track

    02 March 2010 by MCN

    Best RS250 tyres for road and track

    A. I am replacing my tyres on an Aprilia RS250. My thoughts so far are Bridgestone BT090s, BT-003RS or Dunlop SP GPR Alpha 10s? Save cash on motorcycle tyres Looking on the Bridgestone website shows...

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  • Are my exhausts making my bike run badly?

    02 March 2010 by MCN

    Are my exhausts making my bike run badly?

    Q. I've recently traded in my old bike for a Ducati 748R. Unfortunately it seems to have a flat spot as soon as you crack the throttle open, and appears to be running very rich. Save cash on...

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  • Golden rules for helmet painting

    02 March 2010 by MCN

    Golden rules for helmet painting

    Q. I want to get my fiberglass crash helmet painted to match my bike. What do I have to look out for to make sure it will still keep my bonce intact if I do take a tumble? Michael Acton, Plymouth...

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  • Fab motorcycle goggles

    24 February 2010 by Jim Forkin

    I needed a pair of glasses that could be multi-function; sun-glasses, regular prescription and most importantly comfortable. I purhcased a pair of Davida WRS74 Goggles and I have to say for just under £120 they are fantastic, comfortable and great with an open face helmet.

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  • How to set up your bike, the Ron Haslam way

    23 February 2010 by MCN

    How to set up your bike, the Ron Haslam way

    Road race ace Ron Haslam’s years of experience of tracks and public-road circuits have taught him something that’s a mystery to most of us – how to set up a bike. Suspension changes are the only...

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  • Best tyres for a Triumph Speed Triple

    23 February 2010 by MCN

    Best tyres for a Triumph Speed Triple

    Q. I’ve just bought a new Triumph Speed Triple for very spirited riding on the roads (well, it’s what it was built for!) and for fast group track days. Save £££s on motorcycle tyres As I bought...

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  • Brake disc rivets explained

    23 February 2010 by Marc Abbott

    Brake disc rivets explained

    Q. I recently read your advice column in MCN on floating discs from an Andrew Carroll (MCN, November 25) and was wondering, should the rivets on my discs rotate freely on my Aprilia RS250 because at...

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  • New rider: questions to ask a seller

    19 February 2010 by MCN

    New rider: questions to ask a seller

    When you’re buying a new bike it’s easy to get carried away with the occasion and just rush to swing your leg over and get riding  But before you hand over the cash for those lovely keys, there...

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  • New rider: what to look for in a test ride

    19 February 2010 by MCN

    New rider: what to look for in a test ride

    If you’re looking at a bike to buy and you’ve given it a good once over, ask for a ride. You may have to leave the asking price in cash, or your family, or both. At the very least you should get a...

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  • New rider: How to get your bike lowered

    18 February 2010 by MCN

    New rider: How to get your bike lowered

    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...

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  • Where can I buy an Ace Café jacket?

    15 February 2010 by Marc Abbott

    Where can I buy an Ace Café jacket?

    Q. I have lost the MCN edition from last year that had the advert for the Ace Café leather jackets in. Save £££s on motorcycle jackets Can you help me? I would like the address or email address to...

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  • Product advice: Is my tyre contaminated?

    15 February 2010 by Marc Abbott

    Product advice: Is my tyre contaminated?

    The rear tyre on my freshly-cleaned ZX-10 let go before I got to the end of my road, sending me and the bike sliding along on our sides. I can only think that the tyre must have had WD-40 or bike...

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  • How much oil should my new bike use?

    10 February 2010 by MCN

    How much oil should my new bike use?

    It is not unusual for bikes to use a litre of oil per 1000 miles. Oil consumption is determined by a variety of factors, and the one the rider has the most control over is the running in. If it is run...

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  • Why's my exhaust header pipe glowing?

    09 February 2010 by MCN

    Why's my exhaust header pipe glowing?

    Q. I have an N-reg Kawasaki GPz500 which is restricted at the moment. I noticed that as it was warming up the other night, the right hand exhaust header pipe was glowing red but the left side...

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  • Best tyres for riding to a track day?

    09 February 2010 by MCN

    Best tyres for riding to a track day?

    Q. I've just bought a 2000 ZX-9R for track days. Save £££s on motorcycle tyres However I have to ride to the track so I need some advice on suitable tyre options? Ollie, MCN Tyre forum A.

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  • How to adjust your chain properly

    05 February 2010 by Marc Abbott

    How to adjust your chain properly

    The first thing you've got to get right is the alignment. Check that by measuring the distance from swingarm to wheel on both sides. You can also put a straight edge against the rear tyre like a...

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  • How to get your kids started early

    05 February 2010 by Marc Abbott

    How to get your kids started early

    There are a handful of projects running around the country that give youngsters a taste of two wheels.   There’s an off-road school called the Geoff Mayes’ MX try-out (01379-852452) which...

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  • How to set up a Blade exhaust valve

    01 February 2010 by MCN

    How to set up a Blade exhaust valve

    Q. I’m having problems setting up the exhaust valve on my 2003 Blade. Save money on motorcycle exhausts With the ignition on, the index mark on the control valve is not aligning with the horizontal...

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  • Winter riding: keep your distance

    29 January 2010 by MCN

    Winter riding: keep your distance

    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...

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  • Best tyre for a 1250 Bandit

    27 January 2010 by MCN

    Best tyre for a 1250 Bandit

    Q. I’ve got a 2009 Suzuki GSF1250 GT and after 3500 miles I need a new rear tyre to replace the OE Dunlop D218N 180/55 V17. I spend 80% of the time touring, and 20% over the Dales. Save money on...

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  • Can I mix tyres on my VFR750?

    27 January 2010 by MCN

    Can I mix tyres on my VFR750?

    Q. I ride a 1997 VFR750, a superb bike. On the front I have a perfect Bridgestone Battlax BT56 with lots of tread left. Save £££s on motorcycle tyres My question is, can I replace the worn out BT57...

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  • How to change a Ducati 998 fuel filter

    27 January 2010 by MCN

    How to change a Ducati 998 fuel filter

    Q. I want to change the fuel filter on my Ducati 998, which sits inside the fuel tank along with the fuel pump, but I've heard that refitting the pump assembly and the attendant rubber seal is a...

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  • Will my 525 chain fit on a 520 sprocket?

    27 January 2010 by Marc Abbott

    Will my 525 chain fit on a 520 sprocket?

    Q. I’ve just bought a 15-tooth front sprocket for my GSX-R600. I bought it off eBay and it was advertised to fit a 525 chain, which I have. Save cash on chains and sprockets It came yesterday and...

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  • How to plan your first ride on a sports bike

    21 January 2010 by Marc Abbott

    How to plan your first ride on a sports bike

    You've passed your test, bought the kit and blown all your hard-earned on your dream bike. Now it's time to go for your very first ride. And that needs preparation. If you passed your test by the...

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  • Where can I get exhaust packing material?

    19 January 2010 by Marc Abbott

    Where can I get exhaust packing material?

    Q. I have extracted the pipe baffles out of the tail pipe of a Suzuki TS250L and noticed the wadding has completely disappeared. Save cash on motorcycle exhausts Can anyone recommend a suitable...

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