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

Why are my Aprilia Mille's tyres deflating?

Why are my Aprilia Mille's tyres deflating?

Q. I have bought a 2002 Aprilia Mille that is having tyre problems – they’re deflating for no reason. I have put new tyres and valves on and the problem is still there. Motorcycle tyres for sale. The...

Best retro helmet for less than £200

Best retro helmet for less than £200

Q. I'm looking for an open-face helmet to wear on a Triumph Bonneville and I've about £200 to spend (although I'd rather spend less!). Cheap motorcycle helmets for sale. What are my options? Martin...

Why's my FZ1 rear brake useless?

Why's my FZ1 rear brake useless?

Q. The rear brake on my Yamaha FZ1 is useless. I told my local Yamaha dealer when they had it for its 12,000-mile service and afterwards they said it was OK. They said the pads looked almost new (they...

What's holding my tyre to the rim?

What's holding my tyre to the rim?

Q. Why does the rear wheel of a motorcycle not spin within the tyre? A great emphasis is placed on maximising tyre grip against the road surface, so why do the wheels not spin inside the tyre - the...

Exactly what tools do I need to replace my chain?

Exactly what tools do I need to replace my chain?

Q. I am about to replace the drive chain on my Honda Fireblade and I wanted clarification on which tools I’ll need for the job as the retailer wants to sell me a tool to peen over the hollow link...

What’s up with recently rebuilt Hayabusa motor?

What’s up with recently rebuilt Hayabusa motor?

Q. I’ve bought a second-hand Busa for good money that’s just had an engine rebuild. The reason I got it really cheap was because it misfires between five and 7000rpm and won’t rev past that. I’m...

Why are my Kawasaki ZR7’s brakes playing up?

Why are my Kawasaki ZR7’s brakes playing up?

Q. I have recently had my Kawasaki ZR7 serviced. The front brake was playing up and new pads were installed to restore service. But my brakes are still in a bad way – there is so much travel in the...

Perfect tyre for a BMW K1200RS

Perfect tyre for a BMW K1200RS

Q. I've come to the end of the road with the current tyres on my trusty '01 BMW K1200RS (Front Avon Azaro 120/70ZR17, Rear Avon 'Storm' AV56 180/55ZR17) and need a little guidance. My annual mileage...

How do I get exhaust bolts out?

How do I get exhaust bolts out?

Q. What’s the best method of getting exhaust bolts out? I have two Allen head studs and the heads inside are rounded off. mjhammer92, MCN forums A. If you can get to them OK then you can hammer a Torx...

Can I buy a 190-section Bridgestone BT021?

Can I buy a 190-section Bridgestone BT021?

Q. I have a VFR1200 2010 model it has Bridgestone BT021 190/55ZR17 rear and BT021 120/70ZR front I wanted to know if I could put Bridgestone BT023 or BT023 GT as my friends are running them on their...

What's caused my F650Gs's brake disc to warp?

What's caused my F650Gs's brake disc to warp?

Q. I have a 2008 BMW F650GS, which I bought last June with 1900 miles on the clock. BMW replaced the front disc under warranty, saying it had becomewarped. Although no reason was given to why it may...

Why does my Triumph TT600 cut out?

Why does my Triumph TT600 cut out?

Q. I have a 2002 Triumph TT600 with 20,000 miles on the clock. I'm having intermittent issues with it cutting out. The bike will start fine to begin with, but cuts out mid-ride. When it does this the...

Video: How to fit an Interphone F3 communications system

Video: How to fit an Interphone F3 communications system

Dan Sager, from Interphone UK, demonstrates how to sync and fit the Interphone F3 communications system to a Shoei Multitec helmet. The Interphone F3 can be paired with two other bluetooth devices at...

Why won't my Triumph Thunderbird's speedo work?

Why won't my Triumph Thunderbird's speedo work?

Q. I currently own a 1992 BMW K75RT. It has just failed its MoT on one single point. The throttle grip does not return to tickover when released. I have taken the handlebar mechanism apart and it is...

Sticky BMW K75RT throttle grip

Sticky BMW K75RT throttle grip

Q. I currently own a 1992 BMW K75RT. It has just failed its MoT on one single point. The throttle grip does not return to tickover when released. I have taken the handlebar mechanism apart and it is...

Why is my Hornet's front end squeaking?

Why is my Hornet's front end squeaking?

Q. I have just upgraded from my trusty CBR125 to a 2004 Hornet 600, in very good conditionjust under 11,000 miles and a brilliant bike in itself. I have just had a new tyre and pads put on the front,...

Cure for GS's flashing ABS lights

Cure for GS's flashing ABS lights

Q. My BMW R1150GS has ABS – as soon as the bike starts to move I could hear the noise of the ABS engaging and at the same time two simultaneously flashing red lights on thedash would go out. Recently,...

Will changing my rear tyre affect dyno results?

Will changing my rear tyre affect dyno results?

Q. My bike used a 190/55 x 17 rear tyre as original equipment, but now it’s on a 190/50. Will there be a difference in rear wheel torque as a dyno measures it on the rear wheel? Motorcycle tyres for...

Why does my RS125 judder?

Why does my RS125 judder?

Q. I’ve noticed a problem when using the front brake on my 2008 RS125. Sometimes, when braking lightly, the whole front of the bike starts vibrating quite violently - it's not a massive problem but it...

Cure for spluttering ZZR1400

Cure for spluttering ZZR1400

Q. I’ve owned a 2008 Kawasaki ZZR1400 ABS model from new. Recently when it’s at about 60mph in fourth or fifth gear it will start to splutter as if it is running out of petrol or firing on three...

FJ1200 fuel cut-off woes

FJ1200 fuel cut-off woes

Can you help me with a fuel reserve cut-off problem on my 1986 Yamaha FJ1200 please? The fuel tap solenoid appears to be faulty and it cuts off the fuel supply when there’s still lots of fuel in the...

Best tyres for a Triumph Daytona 675

Best tyres for a Triumph Daytona 675

I’ve just acquired a 2006 Daytona 675 fitted with old Dunlop Sportmax D208s which don't inspire confidence. I used Pirelli Diablo Corsas on a 2000 Blade, which worked well. Would you recommend the...

Where are my ZZ-R600's spark plugs?!

Where are my ZZ-R600's spark plugs?!

I decided to check the plugs on my Y-reg Kawasaki ZZ-R600 so dutifully got out my Haynes manual, read up on the steps to take. 1. Remove seat, 2. Disconnect battery, 3. Remove tank 4. Access plugs…...

Yamaha R1 gearbox troubles

Yamaha R1 gearbox troubles

I've just bought a 2004 Yamaha R1. It shifts through all the gears fine if going steady but if I am accelerating hard when I shift into fifth it will hit a false neutral then find sixth. I'm thinking...

How to fit performance brake lines

How to fit performance brake lines

This step-by-step video shows you how to replace ageing brakes lines with a set of high performance lines for increased braking power. While older bikes are still great fun one of the easiest ways of...

Triumph Daytona 955i won't tick over

Triumph Daytona 955i won't tick over

I have a 1999 Triumph Daytona 955i. It refuses to tick over when started from cold. After a couple of miles down the road, it seems fine. If I restart it before it gets cold it’s OK. If I leave it...

Cure for sticky CBR125R speedo

Cure for sticky CBR125R speedo

I’ve owned my 2005 Honda CBR125 for around six months and it’s recently developed a problem where the speedo wavers annoyingly at around 60mph, occasionally sticking at this speed. Joshterry93, MCN...

Why is my CBR600's mudguard cracked?

Why is my CBR600's mudguard cracked?

I have a Honda CBR600 Sport that I have owned for eight years. After my second outing this year I noticed a series of cracks around the lower mounting point of one side on the front mudguard. I fitted...

Why is my front tyre wearing unevenly?

Why is my front tyre wearing unevenly?

Q. I have a Kawasaki ZX-10R with a Metzeler front motorcycle tyre which has worn around one side only, similar to tracking wear on a car tyre, with the wear starting from the centre of the tyre.

Why does B-King's lever come back to the bar?

Why does B-King's lever come back to the bar?

Q. I am having problems with the brake lever travel on my Suzuki B-King. When cold, with the lever set at full span it almost comes into the twist grip, with no resistance. But once I get a very...

Why is my Kawasaki ZXR750 clutch slipping?

Why is my Kawasaki ZXR750 clutch slipping?

Q. I’ve just put some new clutch plates in my Kawasaki ZXR750 H2, but it’s still slipping. Can I adjust it out? wingy46, MCN forums   A. As your clutch is hydraulic, the only adjustment is at...

Why is my GSX-R1000's gear position indicator wrong?

Why is my GSX-R1000's gear position indicator wrong?

Q. I’ve just got a Suzuki GSX-R1000 K7, which is very nice, but when I changed the oil there were some milky deposits in the fluid and the gear position indicator keeps going crazy, reading first for...

Why can't you get run-flat tyres for motorcycles?

Why can't you get run-flat tyres for motorcycles?

Q. My BMW car is fitted with run-flat tyres which I appreciate as I got a puncture the other day about 60 miles from home. I was able to continue back home at 40 to 50mph, although I couldn't get it...

Should I bleed my brakes after a piston popped out?

Should I bleed my brakes after a piston popped out?

Q. I changed my brake pads today and when I pushed one of the pistons back another one popped out. I managed to get it back in OK after a small spillage and it’s not leaking at the moment. Will I need...

Why are my VFR400's indicators on the blink?

Why are my VFR400's indicators on the blink?

Q. I have a problem with both of my Honda VFR400s. When I switch on the indicator there is a delay of about 5-10 seconds and a clicking noise from the relay and then the indicators come on. I have...

What’s caused my tyre valve to blow out?!

What’s caused my tyre valve to blow out?!

Last week I had what I think was a fairly lucky escape. I was checking the tyre pressures on my 2001 Honda CBR1100XX, but when I put the tyre gauge on the valve stem the stem itself (thread included)...