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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

  • 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 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 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 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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  • How to replace your brake pads

    24 November 2006 by MCN Technical Staff

    How to replace your brake pads

    Why bother replacing your pads? Obvious really, but knackered brakes can put you in a hedge. Pad wear is inevitable and, on top of gambling with your safety, worn out pads will also wreck your discs...

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