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

Technical advice: Suzuki Burgman electrical problem

Technical advice: Suzuki Burgman electrical problem

MCN expert Chris Dabbs is here to answer any questions you have on anything bike related. If you have any questions, ask an expert here Q. My Suzuki 400 Burgman regularly cuts out on deceleration at...

Product advice: Paint for fairing panels

Product advice: Paint for fairing panels

MCN expert Chris Dabbs is here to answer any questions you have on anything bike related. If you have any questions, ask an expert here Q. I went sliding down the road recently on my Suzuki...

Parts advice: Mirror extensions

MCN expert Chris Dabbs is here to answer any questions you have on anything bike related. If you have any questions, ask an expert here Q. I need some mirror extensions for my CBR600F, does anyone know who makes them. Phil Walden, Gosport A. A VFR Owners Club member from Hatfield, Pete Morgan, manufactures and supply mirror extensions for several Honda models including VFRs, CBR600s and...

Basic Skills: Changing gear smoothly

Basic Skills: Changing gear smoothly

MCN expert Chris Dabbs is here to answer any questions you have on anything bike related. If you have any questions, ask an expert here Q. All the good riders I know can change gears really...

Suspension advice: Make your bike steer quicker

Suspension advice: Make your bike steer quicker

MCN expert Marc Abbott is here to answer any questions you have on anything bike related. If you have any questions, ask an expert here Q. I love the power and suspension on my Yamaha Fazer 1000.

Clothing advice: Keeping out the draft

Clothing advice: Keeping out the draft

MCN expert Marc Abbott is here to answer any questions you have on anything bike related. If you have any questions, ask an expert here Q. I've got a two-piece textile suit which is quite warm but...

Tyre advice: The best tyres for a Hayabusa

Tyre advice: The best tyres for a Hayabusa

MCN expert Marc Abbott is here to answer any questions you have on anything bike related. If you have any questions, ask an expert here Q. I’ve just got a mint Suzuki Hayabusa which is great...

Bike accessory advice: The coolest exhausts

Bike accessory advice: The coolest exhausts

MCN expert Chris Dabbs is here to answer any questions you have on anything bike related. If you have any questions, ask an expert here Q. Can I fit a race can to my Honda Hornet 600 which won’t...

Bike accessory advice: Getting the most from an aftermarket exhaust

Bike accessory advice: Getting the most from an aftermarket exhaust

MCN expert Chris Dabbs is here to answer any questions you have on anything bike related. If you have any questions, ask an expert here Q. After two enjoyable years riding on my totally standard...

Clothing advice: Carrying a helmet while riding

Clothing advice: Carrying a helmet while riding

MCN expert Rob Hull is here to answer any questions you have on anything bike related. If you have any questions, ask an expert here Q) I want to get a rucksack for wearing while on my...

Clothing advice: 2-piece suits on a budget

Clothing advice: 2-piece suits on a budget

MCN expert Rob Hull is here to answer any questions you have on anything bike related. If you have any questions, ask an expert here Compare and buy motorcycle leathers Q) Dear Rob, I want...

Technical advice: Fixing radial play in brake discs

Technical advice: Fixing radial play in brake discs

MCN expert Chris Dabbs is here to answer any questions you have on anything bike related. If you have any questions, ask an expert here Q. Although my Brembo fully floating cast discs sound like...

Taking care of tyres after a trackday

Taking care of tyres after a trackday

Tyre manufacturers have developed specific tyres for specific purposes, so doing a trackday on tyres designed as as a sports touring tyre will hammer them on the track. However, they won't have...

Suspension advice: Knocking front end

Suspension advice: Knocking front end

MCN expert Chris Dabbs is here to answer any questions you have on anything bike related. If you have any questions, ask an expert here Q. My Yamaha Fazer 1000 has developed an occasional...

Technical advice: Oil light problems

MCN expert Chris Dabbs is here to answer any questions you have on anything bike related. If you have any questions, ask an expert here Q. Are there any common faults with the oil pumps on 1996 Kawasaki ZX-6Rs? I have just done an oil change but I think mine has packed in because the oil light won’t go out? Mike Else, e-mail A. I hope you haven’t done any miles on it because if the pump...

Technical advice: Stop your bike backfiring

MCN expert Chris Dabbs is here to answer any questions you have on anything bike related. If you have any questions, ask an expert here Q. Mh Honda VT750C Ace has had a backfiring problem for the 3000 miles I’ve owned it. All Bran sorted a similar personal problem and I was wondering if you had a cure? It runs fine and the plugs look normal. It happens more on a gentle overrun, like slowing down...

Clothing advice: Keeping the sun out

At this time of year with the low sun a great easy tip is to put a strip of parcel tape at the very top of your visor, when riding into the sun it allows some defence to being dazzled. Scott Cockayne, Wolverhampton

Clothing advice: Removing flies from your visor

Clothing advice: Removing flies from your visor

It's getting to that time of year again when flies start to pepper your visor on a ride. To get them off and leave your visor scratch free, follow these simple instructions. Remove the visor from...

Bike accessory advice: Quickshifters

MCN expert Chris Dabbs is here to answer any questions you have on anything bike related. If you have any questions, ask an expert here Q. Of the many type of quickshifters available common sense would suggest that the type to cut off the fuel injectors (power commander?) rather than ignition would be preferable. Also the full electronic over the relay type? As MCN does not appear to have done any...

Bike accessory advice: Raising the back

Bike accessory advice: Raising the back

MCN expert Chris Dabbs is here to answer any questions you have on anything bike related. If you have any questions, ask an expert here Q. I’ve got a 1990 Yamaha FZR1000 as a budget bike to get...

Tyre advice: Best tyres for CB1000R

Tyre advice: Best tyres for CB1000R

MCN expert Chris Dabbs is here to answer any questions you have on anything bike related. If you have any questions, ask an expert here Q. Dear Chris, which tyes would you recommend for a...

Tyre and suspension advice: Post crash damage to tyres

Tyre and suspension advice: Post crash damage to tyres

MCN expert Chris Dabbs is here to answer any questions you have on anything bike related. If you have any questions, ask an expert here Q. Dear Chris, I was recently involved in a low-speed...

Bike accessory advice: Replacement lights for F800GS

Bike accessory advice: Replacement lights for F800GS

MCN expert Marc Abbott is here to answer any questions you have on anything bike related. If you have any questions, ask an expert here Q. Dear Marc. I have an F800GS but the lights are...

Bike accessory advice: Aftermarket seat for FZ1

Bike accessory advice: Aftermarket seat for FZ1

MCN expert Marc Abbott is here to answer any questions you have on anything bike related. If you have any questions, ask an expert here Q. I've got a FZ1, and I love it but after about three...

Clothing advice: Custom leather jackets

Clothing advice: Custom leather jackets

MCN expert Marc Abbott is here to answer any questions you have on anything bike related. If you have any questions, ask an expert here Q. I'd like to get a leather jacket made with some...

Clothing advice: summer gloves with visor wipes

Clothing advice: summer gloves with visor wipes

MCN expert Marc Abbott is here to answer any questions you have on anything bike related. If you have any questions, ask an expert here Q. All the bugs have started coming out again, so my...

Clothing advice: Textile suits to go over your clothes

Clothing advice: Textile suits to go over your clothes

MCN expert Chris Dabbs is here to answer any questions you have on anything bike related. If you have any questions, ask an expert here Q. My commute to work involves a bit of motorway riding. I'd...

Clothing advice: Cleaning your visor

Clothing advice: Cleaning your visor

MCN expert Chris Dabbs is here to answer any questions you have on anything bike related. If you have any questions, ask an expert here Q. I commute all year round so my visor gets extremely mucky.

Bike accessory advice: Aftermarket indicators

MCN expert Chris Dabbs is here to answer any questions you have on anything bike related. If you have any questions, ask an expert here Q. I have cracked a front indicator on my Yamaha R6 and I want to know whether I can fit a set of aftermarket flush-mounted indicators instead. Is it legal to use side repeaters and does the light need to be projected forward? Jeff Miller, Bournemouth A.

Bike accessory advice: Interchangeable parts

Bike accessory advice: Interchangeable parts

MCN expert Chris Dabbs is here to answer any questions you have on anything bike related. If you have any questions, ask an expert here Q. I’m just about to trade in my Zx-6RJ1 for a 2003...

Technical advice: Loosening corroded bolts

MCN expert Chris Dabbs is here to answer any questions you have on anything bike related. If you have any questions, ask an expert here Q. want to replace the standard exhaust system on my 12,000 mile Kawasaki ZX-7R with an aftermarket system, but all the fixing nuts and bolts are corroded solid. I managed to get the larger collector box nuts off with WD40 and a long extension on the socket,...

Bike accessory advice: Fitting different bulbs

Bike accessory advice: Fitting different bulbs

MCN expert Chris Dabbs is here to answer any questions you have on anything bike related. If you have any questions, ask an expert here Q. Can I change the 35/35w headlight bulbs in my Yamaha...

Bike accessory advice: Improving the brakes

Bike accessory advice: Improving the brakes

MCN expert Chris Dabbs is here to answer any questions you have on anything bike related. If you have any questions, ask an expert here Q. I want to uprate the brakes on my 2002 Suzuki GSF600...

Bike accessories advice: Getting a new log book

Bike accessories advice: Getting a new log book

MCN expert Chris Dabbs is here to answer any questions you have on anything bike related. If you have any questions, ask an expert here Q. I'm the second owner of my 1999 Yamaha R1 and I've...

Bike accessories: Changing the sprockets for accelleration

Bike accessories: Changing the sprockets for accelleration

MCN expert Chris Dabbs is here to answer any questions you have on anything bike related. If you have any questions, ask an expert here Q. I have been told going one tooth down on the front...

Technical advice: Sorting a misfiring engine

Technical advice: Sorting a misfiring engine

MCN expert Chris Dabbs is here to answer any questions you have on anything bike related. If you have any questions, ask an expert here Q. I’ve got a 1985 BMW K100RT which has been misfiring for...