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Touring Motorcycles
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Touring bikes are the long distance runners among motorcycles. Of necessity, they must offer a plush ride and the most comfortable passenger accomodations, suitable for long days in the saddle even when ridden double. Most of those seeking a touring bike are safe and experienced riders with a lot of mileage under their wheels. The majority of the e-mail I get from Motorcycles and Riding Online readers involves questions about what new bike in a certain class or of a certain brand I would recommend. This is the touring bike article in a series that will be updated annually and...

Tips For The Motorcycle Passenger
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Riding on a motorcycle with a friend is one of the most fun things you can do. It can be an even more enjoyable experience if the passenger understands and follows a few simple rules. To be the kind of passenger riders want to ride with, remember the following: Wear clothing that will give you some protection in the unlikely event of a spill. As a minimum, you should wear the following to protect yourself: Footwear that protects your feet and your ankles (hiking boots are good). Durable pants--leather is best; lacking leather, you will have to make do with jeans,...

Take A Friend Riding
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One of the best ways to expand our sport is to take a friend for a motorcycle ride. Naturally, as riders and enthusiasts, we want our passengers to enjoy their first, and subsequent, rides. To help insure this, ride smoothly, considerately, and safely. If their helmet bumps yours when you accelerate, shift gears, or brake, it is your fault, not theirs. You are not riding smoothly. Motorcycling can seem scary to an inexperienced passenger. They have heard plenty of stories about how dangerous motorcycles are, so they are probably nervous before they even get on the bike. Once the ride...

Sport and Sport-Touring Motorcycles
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Whether they are considered pure sport bikes or sport touring bikes, they offer the highest overall level of performance of all street bikes. The main difference between the two classifications is that the sport touring models usually come with a taller windscreen, more comfortable seats and somewhat higher handlebars for a more relaxed seating position, and are available with optional luggage. The majority of the e-mail I get from Motorcycles and Riding Online readers involves questions about what new bike in a certain class or of a certain brand I would recommend. This is the sport bike article in a...

Recommended Motorcycles
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For this article, I have limited the discussion to one or two motorcycles from each of the following classifications: Standard, Cruiser, Sport Touring, and Touring. The experienced motorcyclist will have his/her own favorites, but the person looking for a new bike has to start somewhere. I respectfully suggest that such a person take a look at the following models before deciding. The Harley-Davidson Sportster is my first choice in this class. The Sportster looks like a motorcycle should look, sounds like a motorcycle should sound, and feels like a motorcycle should feel. It is a very visceral experience. In fact,...

Naked Bikes: Standards and Sport Standards
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Call them "standards," "sport standards," "naked bikes" or whatever, the most versatile bikes on the road are the most basic. With the right accessories, the bikes that I still call standards can fill many roles, from a weekend ride on the local track to a ride across the country. The majority of the e-mail I get from Motorcycles and Riding Online readers involves questions about what new bike in a certain class or of a certain brand I would recommend. This is the naked bikes article in a series that will be updated annually and is intended to answer some...

Motorcycles for Touring
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Anyone who plans to travel by motorcycle should take a close look at what the touring riders are doing. This particularly pertains to the motorcycles they ride and the clothes and accessories they chose. The fact is, its the touring bikers who ride the most miles, and in the process they learn what works best out on the road. Today, street bikes seem to be classified as "touring," "sport touring," "standard," "cruiser," "dual purpose" (meaning street and dirt), and "sport" motorcycles. While you can ride around the world on any of these, the dual purpose and sport bikes are the...

Motorcycle Firearms
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With the growing popularity of personal firearms carry among motorcyclists, it's important to find the weapon that best meets our rather specific self defense needs. On occasion, a drunk driver or a car driver experiencing road rage will purposefully ram a motorcycle, which never works out well for the motorcyclist. Use your superior agility and acceleration to evade the car if you can. However, because the driver is attacking the motorcyclist with a deadly weapon (the car), the motorcyclist is legally entitled to defend him or her self with lethal force, probably a firearm. Will you ever be in this...

 Christopher Lee
Good First Motorcycles
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In a strong motorcycle market, when motorcycles for the street are more specialized than ever, better than ever, and selling better than ever, there is one category of motorcycle that is under represented compared to, say, thirty years ago. That category is the motorcycles best suited to the beginning rider. When I started riding, there were many new and used street bikes in the 80-125cc and 150-200cc classes perfectly suited to beginning riders. All of the big four Japanese manufacturers (Honda, Yamaha, Suzuki, and Kawasaki) offered such bikes new, as did several smaller Japanese and Italian makers. Triumph had their...

From Bikes to Trikes
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Older riders, what type of motorcycle are they looking for? The purpose of this article is to start a dialogue, share information and educate motorcycle and accessory manufacturers about the needs of the older rider or the rider with physical limitations. Due to the Motorcycle Safety Improvement Plan1 there have been many recent articles about the accident-prone aging rider. However, further study of this issue has shown that the accident rate figures parallel the large number of baby boomers moving into their middle and senior years. So, the older riders are not more likely to have an accident on a...