Choosing a Bike
Ok, so you have fallen in love with motorcycle riding, now you need to complete the most important task of them all and that is to buy your first motorcycle. But how do you choose? Here are some guidelines to follow and don’t forget with over 30 years experience in the motorcycle industry we know a thing or two about bikes so please feel free to ask any of our staff, they all ride and love motorcycles!
Under the new Learner Approved Motorcycle Scheme (LAMS) in Western Australia the law states that everyone must first start out on a motorcycle no larger than 660cc engine capacity and less than 150kW/tonne. The bike must also be listed on the DPI’s list of Approved Motorcycles, see below for more info. This allows a novice rider to build confidence and skills on a lighter more basic motorcycle before moving up to a larger capacity bike later. Depending on your motorcycle requirements a LAMS bike may be all you will ever need.
Getting Your Motorcycle Licence – Download the Brochure Here
If you are looking for help with getting started or would like to brush up on your skills, Terry’s Motorcycle Training operates from The Honda Shop in Midland and is happy to help! See here for more info on training: Terry’s Motorcycle Training
2. Recognise your needs from a motorcycle:
There are many types of motorcycles; Cruisers, Sports, Touring, Learners, Scooter and more. Each type caters to specific riding styles. Cruisers are popular due to their low seat height and comfortable riding position, whilst Touring bikes offer huge fairings for wind protection, comfortable seats for rider and pillion and are generally larger capacity bikes. Sports bikes offer razor sharp handling, superb brakes and acceleration that can only be likened to being shot out of a cannon. A bike that may be ideal for heavy traffic conditions may not be ideal for long distances, or for using as a weekend thrill ride. Ask yourself – do you want the most fuel efficiency or do you love the torque of a V-Twin engine, or does a 0 to 100km an hour rush excite you?
Be realistic in identifying where and how much you will ride your motorcycle before you make the purchase.
3. Know what is available:
Spend time to identify the different variants available based on your requirement, and study each carefully. Each bike has its own characteristics. While some have excellent handling abilities, others blast away in a straight line. Be realistic in your assessments. Checking out a final shortlist may help you identify distinct preferences and dislikes, which will help you make an informed choice at the time of purchase.
4. Choose a bike that suits your body type:
Since bikes come in different shapes and sizes just like humans do it is important that your bike is ergonomically suited to you. Try test riding the bikes you have shortlisted. You will be amazed at how different each riding experience is. Some may require you to sit in uncomfortable postures, some may have a more manageable center of gravity, some may have a higher seat, and some may have uncomfortable handlebars. You need to take a ride on the bikes to determine which bike fits you best so that riding can be a great experience in the long term.
5. Decide if you want a new or used bike:
Whilst a used bike will give you less guilt if you dent or scratch it, consider that the long-term operational costs of the bike may be slightly higher than a new bike. Conversely new bikes come with a full manufacturers warranty for extra piece of mind. If you are not absolutely sure of your riding skills, you may buy a used bike, master the art of motorcycling and the graduate to a new bike when you feel the time is right.
Financing your new or used bike is a popular option as it allows you to budget on a weekly or monthly basis. Certain finance packages allow you to purchase the motorcycle new or used, and you can include the cost of your riding gear and insurance so its all covered in one easy payment. Like anything that has an engine motorcycles require routine servicing to keep then in good working order and depending on the mileage of the bike service costs will vary depending on the work that needs to be done. So make sure you have a checklist ready of all these things before you invest in a motorcycle.
For a fast and easy guide to what you can afford in our new bike range, please check out our dedicated Find a Bike to Suit Your Budget page here
The Honda Shop in Midland can provide nearly instant approvals thanks to our in-house finance Company, WA Loan Co. You can even apply Online here! We are also able to provide insurance options through Honda Motorcycle Insurance.
7. Finally, make sure you also choose passionately:
Discretion is the key word here. You may follow the checklist word for word and end up buying a bike that is merely functional and does not actually excite you. In the long run it may take the passion of riding out of you. So even while you make a logical decision choose with passion too. Get a bike that will excite you every minute you are on it.
Follow this check-list and be the proud owner of a bike that fulfils all of your needs and yet is a joy to ride.
Ready to Ride? When you are ready to make your decision or if you would like some further assistance please do not hesitate to Contact Us.
Learners / LAMS
As of the 14th of January 2013 Western Australia now uses the LAMS (Learner Approved Motorcycle Scheme) of Learner Licensing for Motorcycle riders in an effort to bring the WA system into line with other systems used in the Eastern States.
This has widened the range of motorcycles available to learners with maximum capacities increased from 250cc to 660cc* making obtaining a motorcycle a much more attractive option for many people. Allowed bikes will be selected by power to weight criteria with bikes that do not exceed 150kW/t and less than 660cc potentially eligible but performance modifications will be restricted.
There are further changes including an extension of the Restricted License period and revisions to the testing procedures for Unrestricted Licenses.
If you already have a learners permit then you will automatically be authorised to ride LAMS motorcycles.
*other conditions apply.
The Department of Transport has made available the following FAQ including answers to many important questions on the new system: LAMS FAQ – Click Here
List of LAMS Approved Motorcycles
Please confirm with the dpi in your state before relying on the list below:
The list is subject to change.
The Honda Shop encourages all learners to receive as much expert training as possible. The Honda Shop has a close relationship with Terry’s Motorcycle Training and Terry is fully up-to-date with all the changes and how they may affect you.
Try Before you buy with a Honda Shop Demonstrator
We believe that buying the right bike is important, to assist you with this we run the largest fleet of Honda demonstration bikes in Western Australia. These bikes are available at any time however to guarantee a time that is suitable to yourself please call ahead.
If you would like us to bring a bike to you, new or used, for a test ride that can certainly be organised also. Simply Contact Us for more info.
Please note: You must have a current motorcycle license. The Honda Shop can provide a loan helmet for the duration of your test ride.
Call (08) 9274 3555 and ask for motorcycle sales to book the ride that could change your life forever!
Motorcycle Delivery Within The Perth Metropolitan Area.
Not everyone has a current motorcycle license or a motorcycle trailer to take delivery of their new motorcycle. Maybe your buying a motorcycle as present for a loved one and would like it delivered during working hours, or you are simply tied up at work.
The Honda Shop can arrange delivery to your home or work place at a time suitable to you. Conditions and costs apply to some areas so please ask our sales staff if you would like to arrange delivery.
Test rides can also be organised at your location. Want to try one of our bikes but your stuck at work all day? Then we can bring any of our used or demo bikes to you to test on your lunch break or whenever suits you.
Also, if you have a bike you no longer need or ride, we offer a trade-in or consignment service.
Call us on (08) 9274 3555 for more details or Contact Us here.
Don’t Risk It, Extend It with The Honda Shop’s RIDESURE Extended Warranty
The Honda Shop is proud to announce a fantastic new way to protect your bike.
- Unlimited Claims*
- Unlimited kms
- Parts & Labour Coverage
- Low monthly payments
- Better resale value thanks to transferable warranty (for a small fee)
Extra Benefits include:
- Towing* – to your nearest repair centre
- Accommodation* – if you are stuck out of town
- Hire Vehicle* – to keep you mobile
Available for a broad range of Motorcycles either new or within a certain age, the The Honda Shop’s RIDESURE Extended Warranty can only be purchased from The Honda Shop and the best part is you can purchase it at anytime for your new or existing bike provided it meets the minimum criteria.Easy claim lodgement processes as well as ensured speedy approval are just some of the benefits of choosing RIDESURE Extended Warranty. For flexibility, if the motorcycle is re-sold privately while under extended warranty the policy can be transferred into the new owner’s name for a small fee.Depending upon the model, riders have a choice of cover periods, 3 years, 4 years or even 5 years piece-of-mind protection
When purchasing your motorcycle, ask us about protecting your ride with The Honda Shop’s RIDESURE Extended Warranty.
Further terms and conditions apply. Eligibility criteria and minimum value apply. For more information please contact us
ATV SAFETY TIPS
The nature of ATV riding demands that you wear protective clothing. Knowing what to wear and how to wear it can reduce the chance of an injury and make you more comfortable when you ride. The following protective gear should be worn every time you ride an ATV:
• Helmet — your helmet is the most important piece of protective riding gear. A helmet can help prevent a serious head injury providing it fits correctly. Selecting the right helmet is important and easy if a few basic tips are kept in mind. Select a helmet that has the Australian standard 1698 approval sticker on the back of it, any helmet without this sticker may not provide you the best possible protection. The helmet should fit snug and be securely fastened. Full-face helmets protect your face as well as your head. Open-face types are lighter and cooler however open face helmets will not protect your face in the event of an impact over the handlebar crash.
• Eye protection — Eye protection is a must. If an object hits you in the face, such as a rock, branch or even a bug, it will distract you and may cause blindness, especially if it hits you in the eyes. Regular sunglasses do not provide adequate protection. The helmet’s face shield or a pair of riding goggles will protect your eyes properly. Select well-ventilated goggles that can be securely fastened and are free from scratches. Google’s also eliminate dust when riding in dry conditions.
• Gloves — Gloves provide protection from abrasions and help to keep your hands from getting sore, tired or cold. Off-road style motorcycle gloves provide a good combination of protection and comfort.• Boots — At a minimum, riders should wear a pair of boots that lace above the ankle for ankle support, with low heels to help prevent the boot from slipping off the footrests and still enable you to easily place your foot under the gear lever for changing gears.
• Shirt and pants — At a minimum, a long-sleeved shirt and long pants should be worn to reduce abrasions on the body.
Inspecting the mechanical condition of your ATV before each day’s use is important for minimising the chances of injury or becoming stranded. The fact that you can ride farther in an hour than you can walk in a day emphasises the need to maintain your ATV in peak operational form. The owner’s manual should be used to ensure proper understanding of all critical points on your machine. Check the following components before using your ATV:
• Tyres — Always maintain the recommended tyre pressure consistently in each tyre. If the tyres on your ATV have unequal pressure, the ATV will pull toward the tyre with the least air pressure. Most automotive tyre pressure gauges will not accurately measure the low pressure typically used in ATV tyres. A gauge designed for low pressure should be used. Wheel lug nuts should be checked to make sure they are tight. Grasp each tyre at the front and rear, then try to rock the tyre on its axle to check for worn-out axle bearings and loose nuts. Always use a torque wrench while following the tightening procedures and specifications for all fasteners outlined in your operator’s manual.
• Throttle — Check throttle operation while moving the handlebars fully to the left and then fully to the right. An accumulation of mud and dirt can restrict cable movement and prevent the throttle from closing
.• Brakes — Your brakes are a crucial part of riding and they must always be in top condition. Make sure they work smoothly and that they are in adjustment according to the instructions in the owner’s manual.
• Light and switches — Be sure all lights are working. Check engine stop switches by switching them off and on during the warm-up period.
• Oil and fuel — Check the oil and fuel with the engine off. Look for fuel or oil leaks.
• Drive train and chassis — inspect your chain for proper adjustment, adequate lubrication and signs of wear. If your ATV is equipped with a drive shaft rather than a chain, check for oil leaks and maintain its oil supply as outlined in your owner’s manual. Rough terrain will loosen chassis parts. Look and feel for loose parts while the engine is off. Shake handlebars, footrests and other similar components before each ride, and periodically check major fasteners with a wrench. The operator’s manual should be read and understood before attempting to operate your ATV. It will contain specifications and procedures that apply directly to your model and should be considered as the final authority for safe operation of your ATV. Such information may include tyre inflation pressures, torque specifications for fasteners, oil types and service intervals, battery maintenance, or brake adjustment and service.
Operating your ATV
Turns — Most ATVs have solid rear axles, which turn each of the rear wheels at the same speed. This requires special turning skills, which primarily involve shifting your body weight. Low-speed turns require that you shift your body weight forward and to the outside of the turn as you turn the handlebar. The objective is to reduce weight on the inside rear wheel. For turns at higher speeds, you must lean your upper body toward the inside of the turn while keeping your weight on the outer footrest. This balances the higher cornering forces as vehicle speed increases. If your ATV starts tipping during a turn at any speed, lean your upper body farther into the turn while gradually reducing the throttle and making the turn wider.
Braking — Begin the braking process by releasing the throttle and shifting to a lower gear well in advance of the intended stopping point. With this method, the engine helps to slow your ATV. Applying brakes smoothly and evenly will bring your ATV to its quickest stop. Apply brakes lightly on slippery surfaces. When descending a hill, shift to a lower gear for engine braking rather than riding the brakes for an extended period of time.
Climbing — The first rule to remember is to stay off hills too steep for your ability or that of your ATV. When approaching a hill, you should keep both feet firmly on the footrests and shift your body weight forward by sliding forward on the seat. For steep hills, stand on the footrests and lean forward to shift as much weight forward as possible. To reduce the chance of stalling the engine, climb hills in a low gear. If the engine does stall, you must apply the brakes before the forward motion stops. If your ATV stalls and then rolls backward, apply brakes slowly. Rapidly applying brakes during a backward roll can cause a rear overturn.
Descending — Before descending a hill, you should shift the transmission into a low gear and point the ATV directly downhill. Keep both feet firmly on the footrests and slide back on the seat to increase your stability and the effectiveness of the brakes.
Riding across slopes — Avoid crossing steep slopes and slopes where there is slippery or bumpy terrain. If you do ride across slopes, keep both feet firmly on the footrests and lean your body uphill. If the ATV begins to tip, turn the front wheels downhill. If the terrain prohibits your turning downhill, dismount on the uphill side immediately.
Additional equipment — Many operators are taking advantage of the additional equipment available to increase the uses of their ATVs. This equipment can be divided into two categories: that which is rigidly mounted on the ATV and pull-type equipment that is towed by the ATV’s draw bar. While this equipment can increase your machine’s uses, it imposes some new operating restrictions that must be followed for safe operation.
ATV Training Videos:
You can view ATV training videos here:
For training courses in Western Australia click here.
MOTORCYCLE SAFETY TIPS
Physical and Mental Preparedness
Often overlooked, these are very important aspects of motorcycle safety. Operating a motorcycle safely is much more physically and mentally demanding than driving a car. Are you physically able to ride safely? Are you mentally prepared to ride and concentrate on the riding tasks? Many things can impair either or both. Some things are rather obvious, some not.
The key is to be aware of your physical and mental condition and save the ride for later if there is anything that could substantially impair either. Your life may depend on it.
When most people hear the term “riding gear”, they think of things that will lessen injury in case of a fall. While that is a big part of it, riding gear can and should be used to help keep you from falling in the first place. Never thought about it that way? If not, you’re certainly not alone. Proper riding gear is used to maintain comfort as well as provide crash protection. Discomfort can actually CAUSE a fall. So what is proper riding gear? It depends on the conditions, but at a minimum it is:
• A helmet approved by DOT, and preferably also by Snell. The helmet should fit snug but not be too tight. In other words, it should be comfortable. Besides being the best defence against head injury in case of a fall, a helmet has some other advantages as well.
• A long-sleeved shirt or jacket, snug at the wrists.
• Long pants.
• Full-fingered gloves. Besides abrasion protection, gloves usually offer a better grip on the controls, especially in condition extremes. In the cold, you will need them to stay warm. In the heat, sweaty hands or fingers may slip off the controls. Gloves offer a buffer against this. They also provide some level of protection against flying objects, such as rocks picked up by traffic or insects that inevitably will collide with your hands.
• Eye protection. This may be goggles, a face-shield, or glasses. Windshields attached to motorcycles DO NOT offer adequate eye protection.
• Sturdy footwear, preferably leather and preferably over the ankle. Besides the obvious abrasion protection, on most motorcycles there are many hot parts that reside near your feet and ankles. You should also try to avoid long or dangling laces. Your quick thinking may be put to the test if you come to a stop and your foot won’t go down because you have a lace caught in the gear lever or brake pedal.
Making Sure Your Motorcycle Is Ready
You being ready to ride is only part of the battle. You need to make sure your motorcycle is ready too. You should perform a quick, overall inspection of your motorcycle before each ride. To do this, use what is referred to as the T-CLOCK inspection, explained below.
• T – Tyres and wheels
Check your tyres for the proper air pressure, this is normally written on the side walls of the tyre itself, tread depth, cracks, bulges or embedded objects. Check wheels for dents, cracks and roundness. Check spokes for proper tightness or missing spokes. Check bearings and seals for signs of failure.
• C – Controls
Check all levers, making sure they are not broken, bent, cracked or loose. Check the condition and routing of control cables, making sure they move freely, are not frayed, and have no sharp angles, and are of sufficient length as to not interfere with steering. Check that all hoses are in good condition and don’t interfere with steering. Make sure your throttle moves freely, with no sticking and snaps closed when released.
• L – Lights and electrical
Check your battery, making sure the terminals are clean, electrolyte fluid is sufficient, and that it is properly secured. Check your headlight, making sure it works, has no cracks and is aimed properly. Check all other lights and reflectors for operation, cracks and fastening. Check wiring, looking for frays, clean connections and proper routing.
• O – Oil and fluids
Check oil and fluid levels, including brake and clutch fluid, coolant and of course gasoline. Check all fluid reservoirs, hoses and lines for leaks.
• C – Chassis
Check condition of the frame, looking for cracks, dents or bends. Check forks and shocks, making sure they travel freely and are properly adjusted. Check chain or belt, for proper tension, lubrication and wear. Check all fasteners, bolts and cotter pins, making sure they are not missing, broken or loose.
• K – Kickstand
Check the side stand and center stand. Make sure they are not cracked or bent, and that they spring into place and the tension is sufficient to hold them.
Although this sounds like a lot, this inspection can be performed quite quickly. While it won’t guarantee against a failure of some sort, it increases your odds of finding problems before they become an issue.
Carrying a Passenger
Carrying a passenger on a motorcycle is not like taking someone with you in a car. A passenger affects the overall handling and dynamics of your motorcycle. Unless you are a fairly skilled rider, you probably should not even consider taking on a passenger. If you do carry a passenger, you should know and do the following:
• Never carry a passenger unless your motorcycle is designed for one, including seating space and passenger footpegs.
• NEVER allow a passenger to sit anywhere except on the area of the seat designated for a passenger.
• Make sure that the weight of yourself, your passenger and all gear does not exceed the maximum recommended weight for your motorcycle according to manufacturer’s specifications.
• Make sure your passenger has proper riding gear. It’s just as important for your passenger to be protected and comfortable as it is for you.
• Make sure your passenger knows what he/she is supposed to do. Unless the person has ridden with you many times and you know he/she understands the rules, take the time to go over them before you start your ride. The passenger should:o Keep his/her feet on the footpegs at all times, and avoid contact with any hot parts.o Sit still as much as possible, particularly when slowing or stopped.o Always lean with the motorcycle. This means the passenger’s torso should always be the same angle as the motorcycle. They should not lean in or out.o When in a turn, look over the shoulder of the operator in the direction of the turn.
• Make sure your suspension is properly adjusted for the extra weight.
Loading Your Motorcycle if you have panniers, saddlebags or a top box.
When loading your motorcycle, you need to do more than just randomly fill space. Check your owner’s manual to find out your gross carrying capacity and never exceed it. Whether you have a touring machine with a travel trunk and saddlebags, or a standard motorcycle, the rule is the same – the bulk of the weight should be placed low and as close to the centre of the motorcycle as possible.
Distribute the weight evenly on both sides, and if using manufactured bags, never exceed the weight recommendation for that bag. Make sure that any attached load is securely fastened, and that any straps are tight, have no loose ends, and not freely moving. Make sure that any attached load does not block any lights or turn signals, or interfere with your steering, braking, shifting, or other control of the motorcycle.
Many of these steps may seem to be common sense but often we can overlook minor details or risks due to bad habits or inattention. Riding can be heaps of fun and nothing comes close to the feeling of freedom and enjoyment that comes from it so make sure that you do everything you can to keep it safe and enjoyable for all.
Ready to Ride? When you are ready to make your decision or if you would like some further assistance please do not hesitate to Contact Us.
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