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How to Prepare for your Motorcycle Trip

Gear up and get ready to enjoy your next ride as we guide you through the essentials on how to prepare for your motorcycle trip. Embarking on a motorcycle journey is not just a ride; it’s an adventure waiting to unfold and we want to ensure that you are properly prepared. Whether you’re a seasoned rider or a novice eager to hit the road, proper preparation is key to ensuring a safe and enjoyable experience. In this guide, we’ll give you essential tips on how to prepare for your motorcycle trip:

Essential Toolkit

While you might want to pack your entire garage for the tour, remember that simplicity can be key. We offer an in-depth list within our tour guides specifying toolkit essentials. Our team has mastered the art of roadside repairs. Though we always ensure no rider is left behind, carrying the necessary tools simplifies any unforeseen circumstances.

Engine Maintenance

Review your bike’s service schedule and factor in the upcoming tour mileage. If your bike has been idle for extended periods, perhaps consider an early service. Addressing potential issues at home is more convenient than mid-journey. At the very least, inspect your fluid levels or ask your local dealer for a pre-tour check.

Lighting

Test all bulbs before departure. Enlist a friend’s help to ensure every light is functioning. It’s wise to pack spare bulbs, which are also legally mandated in many countries. For those with LED headlights, while carrying a spare unit might be impractical, ensure other bike lights with regular bulbs function correctly and carry replacements.

Battery Vigilance

Electrical complications, especially related to batteries, are a common hiccup. Use devices like the Optimate to maintain battery health during idle periods. Regularly test your battery’s strength, and if any issues arise, replace it before the tour to avoid unnecessary hassles.

Braking System

Examine your brake pads and discs. With ample pad wear left, consider packing spares – they’re easily replaceable and valuable if needed in remote locations.

Tyre Check

Tyres top our list of tour issues. Examine them thoroughly, ensuring no embedded debris or wear issues. Riding abroad can wear down tyres faster due to increased loads and different road conditions. If tyre longevity is in question, replace them pre-tour. Remember, sourcing specific tyre sizes on-the-go can be challenging.

During your tyre checks, place your bike on its centre stand (if available) and inspect for excessive wheel play, indicating potential bearing issues. Proactively addressing these can save a trip from premature ending.

Suspension Maintenance

Fork seal leaks occasionally occur. Compress the suspension to verify no oil leaks. While we’ve always managed such challenges, carrying spare seals as a preventive measure is recommended.

Windscreen Adjustments

Though not mandatory, touring screens provide added comfort on prolonged rides. For those using them, invest time in finding the optimal setup to enhance your riding experience.

Comfort Seating

Since touring means extended saddle time, comfort is paramount. With many modern seats prioritising aesthetics over comfort, consider add-ons like gel inserts or cushioned pads.

Numberplate

Ensure your numberplate adheres to local regulations to prevent unwanted complications.

Handlebar Adjustments

Optimising bike ergonomics greatly enhances long-distance touring comfort. Handlebar risers, available in various sizes, can alleviate back pressure and adjust handle reach. If your bike lacks heated grips, investing in an aftermarket set is invaluable.

Chain & Driveshaft Care

Familiarise yourself with chain adjustment and cleaning. Acquire a maintenance kit to ensure cleanliness during the tour. For those with chain-driven bikes, camaraderie often forms among riders, sharing maintenance insights. For those with shaft-drive bikes, while maintenance is minimal, ensure fluid levels are adequate and pack necessary refilling tools.

Lastly, striking the right balance between what’s desirable and essential ensures everything fits within your motorcycle panniers so that you can prepare for your motorcycle trip – safe touring!

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