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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

  • Top A2 licence sportsbikes

    27 July 2016 by MCN News

    Top A2 licence sportsbikes

    The new Honda CBR250RR could be the most desirable A2 licence-friendly sportsbike on the market, but at the moment Honda has no plans to bring it into the UK or Europe. In lieu of the CBR250RR below...

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  • Top 125 bikes: Sportsbikes

    14 July 2016 by MCN News

    Top 125 bikes: Sportsbikes

    Naked bikes are easy to use and practical, but what self-respecting 17-year-old cares about practicality? All that matters at that age is looking fast, which is where our top 125cc sportsbikes come...

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  • Video: How to ride a motorcycle in the rain

    24 June 2016 by Ped Baker

    Video: How to ride a motorcycle in the rain

    As you've proabably already noticed, the British summer is quickly turning into another damp squib. The chances of running into a few sharp showers is high and if you're inexperienced in wet weather...

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  • Video: The perfect MOD 2 bike test pass

    17 June 2016 by MCN News

    Video: The perfect MOD 2 bike test pass

    You’ve left your CBT and Motorcycle Theory Test long behind you by now…your Module 1 was only a few weeks ago and you passed with flying colours… NOW comes the  big one. You’re preparing for...

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  • Herald Rambler 250 first ride

    24 May 2016 by Jon Urry

    Herald Rambler 250 first ride

    Herald describe themselves as a British company that designs, builds and creates stylish, yet simplistic, vintage-themed motorcycles. And there is a refreshing honesty about the way they conduct their...

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  • 125cc best-sellers go back to school

    20 May 2016 by Andy Davidson

    125cc best-sellers go back to school

    You’re looking at the UK’s most important machines – the best sellers. And they’re record breakers for a reason because they’re the new– and urban – riders’ bikes of choice. These are the machines...

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  • A2 licence group test: The light brigade

    15 April 2016 by Adam Child

    A2 licence group test: The light brigade

    Not so long ago, learner bikes were perceived as nondescript, you weren’t part of the club as a newbie. Low-capacity bikes – by which we mean sub-500cc – were shrugged-off by mainstream bikers. I...

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  • Learn new skills with Kawasaki and BikeSafe

    04 March 2016 by MCN News

    Learn new skills with Kawasaki and BikeSafe

    Kawasaki Motors UK and BikeSafe are extending their partnership to continue offering the BikeSafe Off Road Skills courses run by Kawasaki Off Road Experience partners. The course is designed to show...

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  • Coping with extreme cold

    17 December 2015 by Simon and Lisa Thomas

    Coping with extreme cold

    Riding in cold weather can be more dangerous than in hot. As your body redirects your blood to protect vital organs our brains fall into 'emergency-mode' and sensible cognitive thought becomes a...

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  • Video: Keep your bike clean this winter

    25 November 2015 by MCN News

    Video: Keep your bike clean this winter

    Winter certainly feels like it's here already, and the roads are already noticeably grimier, which means dirtier bikes, even after a quick ride to the shops. Keeping your bike clean and free of grime...

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  • Stay visible this winter

    03 November 2015 by MCN News

    Stay visible this winter

    The nights are drawing in, and for most people it's now dark on the way home from work. If as a new rider you've never ridden in the dark, it can be quite a daunting prospect, especially if you add in...

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  • The route to getting your licence

    13 October 2015 by MCN News

    The route to getting your licence

    The motorcycle licence system in the UK can be confusing and daunting at first, depending on your age and riding experience.  The interactive flow chart here will make your journey to getting...

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  • A2 licence sportsbike group test

    29 September 2015 by Andy Davidson

    A2 licence sportsbike group test

    Yamaha’s new YZF-R3 has KTM’s RC390 and Kawasaki’s Ninja 300 in its sights. To find out if it has what it takes to be the king of the A2 sportsbikes, we take all three for a thrashing on road and...

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  • Shoei XR1100 wind noise

    31 May 2013 by Paul Smith

    I ride a Yamaha FZ6 which I have had for approx 4 years, during that time I had a Nolan Intergrale. Never once did I think about wearing earplugs with this helmet. I then booked a track day for later in the year and found I needed an helmet with the appropriate certification. I bought a Shoei XR1100 from Hein Gericke in Leicester, who were very good with fitting and care of my new helmet. The...

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  • What you can ride under new licence laws

    30 January 2013 by MCN

    What you can ride under new licence laws

    The new licence laws, which came into effect on January 19 might seem baffling, but a grounding in smaller bikes is the foundation of brilliant riding. And there's no shortage of bikes to choose...

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  • Best tyres for a Yamaha R6

    26 November 2012 by MCN

    Best tyres for a Yamaha R6

    Q. I have been running Dunlops on my Yamaha R6 and didn’t get on very well with them. I did start looking at Pirelli Diablos or Metzelers, then someone suggested Michelin 2CTs… Plumbus, MCN Forums A.

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  • How to change a front sprocket

    26 November 2012 by MCN

    How to change a front sprocket

    Q. I want to raise the gearing on my 1997 Bandit 600 by changing the front sprocket. What's the best way of getting it off and torqueing it back up correctly again? vmcpakmcn, MCN forums A. Such a...

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  • My Honda VFR750 won’t rev past 6000rpm

    26 November 2012 by MCN

    My Honda VFR750 won’t rev past 6000rpm

    Q. My Honda VFR750FR revs and runs well in the first four gears, but struggles in fifth and sixth to get past 6000pm. It also backfires – especially at low revs. I've changed the fuel filters and air...

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  • Best suspension upgrade for a GSX-R750?

    24 September 2012 by MCN

    Best suspension upgrade for a GSX-R750?

    Q. My GSX-R750 K2 is now 10 years old (obviously!) and has nearly 35,000 on the clock. Everything I read about 'suspension' says it will need replacing or refreshing after about 16,000 miles, so I can...

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  • Best tyres for a Kawasaki ZZR1400

    24 September 2012 by MCN

    Best tyres for a Kawasaki ZZR1400

    Q. I am currently using Avon Storm 2 Ultras on my Kawasaki ZZR1400 but fancy trying Bridgestones what should I try, BT023 or S20s? I’m not a track day loon but I like to get a move on. But I want them...

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  • How do I clean my radiator?

    21 September 2012 by MCN

    How do I clean my radiator?

    Q. Is there a product or a process to clean aluminium radiators and oil coolers? You could eat your dinner off the rest of my bike but these get covered in crap and corrosion. It can't be good for...

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  • Can I put different sized tyres on my rim?

    21 September 2012 by MCN

    Can I put different sized tyres on my rim?

    Q. I have a bike with stupid tyre sizes - 100/90 x 19 front and 130/80 x 17 rear. I'm looking at the possibility of sticking different tyre sizes on the same rims. I've done this before but what I...

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  • How to secure your new bike

    21 September 2012 by MCN

    How to secure your new bike

    Q. I'll be getting my first bike next week, a 2010 Kawasaki ER-6F and I'm trying to work out what kind of security mechanisms to get. The bike will be kept overnight in a locked compound (I live in a...

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  • Why is my GS750 hissing?

    05 September 2012 by MCN

    Why is my GS750 hissing?

    Q. I have an old Suzuki GS750 and it’s running very sweetly since I cleaned and synced the carbs, but it's just developed a bit of a hissing sound (in time with the engine) from the front of the...

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  • Does my Honda Hornet have a radiator fan?

    05 September 2012 by MCN

    Does my Honda Hornet have a radiator fan?

    Q. I'm wondering if my Honda Hornet 600 has a radiator fan. When I went on the recent Plymouth Megaride with 4000 bikes my bike was right up in the red on the temperature gauge. I had to keep turning...

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  • How do I tell my SV’s bearing are shot?

    05 September 2012 by MCN

    How do I tell my SV’s bearing are shot?

    Q. My 10-year-old SV650 is coming up to new tyre time and I was told to watch out for wheel bearing seals and spacers with high mileage bikes. The thing is, I don't actually know what I'm looking for...

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  • Will a loud horn cause MoT failure?

    05 September 2012 by MCN

    Will a loud horn cause MoT failure?

    Q. I am just wondering if there are any MoT or legal issues with a Steibel Nautilus horn that pumps out 139 decibels? My existing horn is fading slightly and I lost count of just how many people...

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  • Best tyres for a Kawasaki ZXR400?

    29 August 2012

    Best tyres for a Kawasaki ZXR400?

    With my 1991 ZXR400 weighing the same/slightly more than a modern 600 sports bike what rubber should I buy next? I use the bike every day as it is my only form of transport. So is there something that...

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  • Drop-down visors: are they any good?

    29 August 2012

    Drop-down visors: are they any good?

    What are your thoughts on internal drop-down sun visors? Are they worth having? Debthehog, MCN forums The only downsides to them are that a few can become loose and rattle inside your helmet or drop...

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  • ZZR1100 clutch has given up!

    29 August 2012

    ZZR1100 clutch has given up!

    I seem to have a major problem. After riding my Kawasaki ZZR1100 to work on a dairy farm I came back to it after milking to find that the clutch was completely unusable. The lever is solid and when I...

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  • Why’s my Gixer overheating?

    29 August 2012

    Why’s my Gixer overheating?

    My 1997 Suzuki GSX-R600 is overheating. After a 45-minute ride the temperature had risen to around 125°C. Since then I have had the radiator drained, flushed and filled with new coolant. I have had...

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