Bern Moto Festival vs Salon 2 Roues Lyon: the big game
With the 1st edition of this new Bern Moto Festival, in Switzerland, expectations were high, and perhaps a little disproportionate. So did…Read More
Given the success of our last article (buying a used motorcycle, a practical guide, here), we decided to write a new article on mechanics for you. This time we tackle the basic equipment and list 10 tools every biker should have at home.
Also, we asked our friend and Wrench-Master, Robin, owner at Rideshaper (more info here), to draw up a list of his 10 essentials, in other words, ten tools that any biker must have at home. Period.
So we listen carefully to the gentleman and read the article till the end 🙂 !
To see more clearly …It seems obvious to some, but a flashlight makes small interventions easier, eg. to check the brake pads. Some will argue that you can use your smartphone instead (most have a flashlight function). However, when you have greasy hands, it’s best not to dig deep into your pockets to reach for your phone. And a flashlight can sneak into tight places (well sticking to mechanic of course).
You will use the basic tools for your motorcycle, but occasionally also when assembling an IKEA piece of furniture. Also, buy proper tools, once, and they will last long. To adjust the controls:
Did you know that a well-maintained chain kit can last twice as long as a neglected one? A chain that is too tight or not tight enough, badly greased, etc. wears out faster. Also, if you want to avoid a big bucks every 15,000 km, remember to maintain it regularly.
To check that the chain tension is correct (see previous point).
To control tire pressure precisely, without having to go to the gas station every time. Did you know that the contact area between the motorcycle (tire) and the road is the size of a credit card? An improperly inflated tire (too much or not enough) wears faster, provides a bad driving experience, but is also dangerous. Also, remember to check the pressure regularly. Your safety is at stake!
To have properly smooth working controls.
To have a clean motorcycle and keep it clean.
In general, you avoid over-washing your bike with the high-pressure jet. Because this one will tend to damage certain parts (in particular the blades of the radiator), but also to drain water in unwanted places (for example the wiring harness).
In any case, keeping a motorcycle clean will not only allow you to show off, but above you won’t get your hands (too) dirty when you have to service it. A well-maintained motorcycle will also resale (better). Keep that in mind.
To recharge the battery or keep it charged.Motorcycle batteries are often a weak point and do not last long. Also, to extend the replacement deadline, consider getting a battery charger. These chargers make it possible to deliver a boost of juice when it is flat but also to maintain a critical charge threshold in winter.
The multimeter will allow you to check the battery level and/or try to find a possible electrical failure. So before dismantling the entire harness, we check with the multimeter.
Very useful to top up when needed, and to avoid putting oil everywhere! If you are in trouble, you can always take a PET bottle, cut the “bottom” of the bottle and use it as a funnel. It can help out.
Do you want more? Develop your knowledge of mechanics? Customize or service your own bike? Take a mechanical course?
Why don’t you have a look at Le Bercail! The first “do-it-yourself” workshop in the French-speaking Switzerland. We wrote an article on the place (here). Or go see directly the Rideshaper website (here)! Robin will also be happy to give you a little guided tour of the place, without obligation!