Getting Ready to Ride
Riding a motorcycle is fun, exciting, and rewarding. There are many types of motorcycles available for any kind of riding that you may have in mind, from off-roading to cross-country touring. People who ride motorcycles know that there is a kind of excitement that you can’t get anywhere else, along with a sense of freedom.
The process of buying your first motorcycle can be intimidating. If you are used to driving a car, you may be surprised by some of the different things you need to take into consideration when buying a bike. Dave Sears of Alamo Cycle Plex breaks down the 5-step process of buying your new bike and getting ready to ride, sharing hints and tips along the way.
1. Getting to Know Your Dealer
When you have selected the basic type of bike you want to buy, it is time to look for a dealer. Dealers can range from single-manufacturer shops to shops that offer a wide variety of models and styles. When you want a broad view of what kind of motorcycle you can get, a family-owned, independent dealer like Alamo Cycle Plex could be the best choice for you.
Your dealer will have a variety of bikes to choose from, and they will be able to match your riding style and how you want to use the bike with the right model. For example, if you want to ride long distances with a passenger, you will probably want a large touring bike. If you want to commute, you will want something more lightweight.
2. Finding Out About Licensing
Riding a motorcycle is far different from driving a car. Many motorcyclists choose to take classroom and on-the-road instruction before going for their licenses. Safety training is a must since unfortunately, the crash statistics for a motorcycle are much higher than those associated with a car or truck.
Licensing requirements vary by state. Most states will allow an adult rider over age 18 to skip the written permit stage, similar to the system in place when becoming licensed to drive a car. Some states require road instruction. Other states waive the requirement to take a roadside examination when the licensee takes an approved education course.
3. Arranging for Insurance
Many new motorcyclists experience sticker shock when looking at insurance policies. Sadly, since the crash statistics are so much higher for bikes, expensive insurance policies are commonplace. Working with an agent at a specialized firm like Progressive or Dairyland can help to make sure that you are not paying more than you should.
The prices for insurance vary widely depending on the type of bike you have chosen. The price depends not only on the safety of the bike but also on its likelihood of being stolen. A bike that rides safely yet is not on thieves’ top lists should receive the lowest insurance rates.
4. Deciding on Maintenance
When you need someone to maintain your bike, it is a great idea to stay with the dealer who sold it to you. The dealer will have expertise in the brand and model you have chosen. If you bought the bike from a dealer that does not have a shop or bought it second hand, you will have to go through the process of selecting a mechanic.
Choosing the right mechanic to work on your bike can be complicated. The best way to start is by asking local riders who take care of their bikes. Word-of-mouth is helpful, but online reviews can take it a step further. Your local riders’ club may be your best resource for finding a good mechanic.
5. Finding Storage
If you don’t have a garage at home, you will want to find a safe place to keep your bike in the winter months. You can rent storage space at a local garage or in a stand-alone storage unit. Leaving your motorcycle exposed to the elements should be avoided.
Taking Care of Your New Motorcycle
Having a new motorcycle is fun and exciting. Learning to ride can be nerve-wracking, but you will soon get used to the differences between driving a car and riding a motorcycle. One of the best things about owning a motorcycle is that you will have an amazing sense of freedom. You will be able to get out and enjoy the roads while safely social distancing.
When you follow these 5 steps, you will be able to protect your new ride. Dave Sears from Alamo Cycle Plex wants new riders to understand that they need to carefully research all of their options before buying a bike and that they need to know how to take care of it.
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