The Bike Rather Then The Car
Much like cars, motorcycles are vehicles made to take us from point A to point B.
But, there is something particular about riding a motorcycle. You are exposed to weather and wind, sunshine and rain, in a wherry different way then sitting sealed of in your car away from your surroundings.
You are able to go places your car will never take you, experience the roads and scenes from a wherry different perspective. The motorcycle can be your best friend or your worst enemy depending on the trip you are taking or the weather conditions that suddenly might appear, yet many people choose the motorcycle rather than the car. Whether it is the lust for adventure, the thrills that you might experience, the speed, or the relaxing sunday ride, we all have our reasons to love motorcycles.
The Basic Controls Of a Motorcycle
Riding a motorcycle is much like driving a car in the sence of operating the controls that make the vehicle start or stop, but that is pretty much where the similarities ends.
Both vehicles have clutches, throttles, gears and breaks that work in the same way but are operated differently.
- The throttle is located on the right side of the handle bars and is the control wich you use to regulate the power of the engine with. Turning it gives the engine more fuel and air (if it is a petrol engine) which makes it produce more power, that is transmitted via the rear tire to the ground which makes the vehicle move forward.
- The clutch is the control lever on the left side of the handle bars. Pulling it makes the transmission of the engine able to shift gears without simultaneously putting force on it. This is used by the rider when choosing an appropriate gear for the desired speed.
- The gear shifter is located on the left side of the bike and used by your left foot, and can only be pressed up or down. Pressing it up shifts to a higher gear and pressing it down shifts to a lower gear. The purpose with gears are that you can choose a suitable engine operating speed (RPM) for a particular vehicle speed (Mp/h or Km/h).
- The front break is operated by the lever on the right side on the handlebars. Pulling this lever decreases the speed of the front wheel and the vehicle. On motorcycles you usually use the front break up to 70% of all breaking power in everyday driving. Tough, it is possible to use it to 100% of all breaking power but this is extremely dangerous and is not suitable for safe driving.
- The rear brake is located under your right foot on the right side of the bike. This is similar to the car except on a car, the brake pedal stops both the front and the rear wheels while on the bike you only operate the rear wheel. The rear break is not used as much because while breaking, almost all the force is transmitted to the ground via the front wheel making the rear wheel almost have no traction.
Accelerating, Breaking and Shifting Gears
In order to be safe in traffic it is crucial to learn to operate all controls simultaneously. Even just to make the bike move forward you have to use the clutch and the throttle simultaneously.
The first step is understanding the gears, throttle and clutch
The gears have an order which follows:
When the bike is parked or when the engine is idling the bike is in "Neutral". This means you don't have any gear selected and the bike is unable to move anywhere. In order for you to choose or switch gears you need to engage or pull the clutch lever and after, pressing the gear shifter ether up or down. The "tabel" above shows you the order in which the gears follow. Pressing the gear shifter up two times makes you choose the second gear and so forth.
Now that you have chosen your gear, which should be the first if you are standing still and about to accelerate. Gently release the clutch and slowly increase the throttle. This might take a couple of attempts as all bikes have different sized engines and throttle responses. When your bike starts to move increase the throttle to accelerate, shift gears by releasing the throttle, pulling the clutch and choosing the desired gear.
The second step are the breaks
To start breaking while driving, pull the clutch lever and release the throttle to stop the bike from resisting to move forward. apply the desired breaking power by pulling the front brake lever and pushing the rear brake lever. This should be done in a way that the total amount of breaking forces are distributed by the wheels by 70% front wheel and 30% rear wheel for safe breaking.
Peactice Makes Perfect
Learning how to ride a motorcycle might sound and seem complicated. In reality it is quite the opposite. People learn fast and a good place to start of is by Getting Your Own Motorcycle Licence. With this basic information you have a great advanatage if you attend a motorcycle licence course.