Motorcycle Touring Guide

jeetcp

Mediocre me
^ Riding gear are important for long distance.

Try cramster. Check the website or buy from showroom.
 

Yogesh Sarkar

Administrator
If you can afford to buy riding gear and in particular good quality riding gear, then it is a good idea to go for it. Since at the end of the day, accidents do happen and at that time riding gear can come in quite handy.

Having said that, my recommendation would be to get a riding jacket and gloves from Cramster or DSG, rather than going for something like that.
 

Aargee

Member
How important is a body armour while touring long distances?
Forget long distances, even for everyday commute, I'd strongly suggest using riding gears...especially with the kind of chaos going around in this country & traffic madness!!!

Was thinking of buying this! PLease advice.Else please suggest, i stay in jaipur
These are some of the good riding gears dealers in the country & they can get it delivered to your door steps...
Spartan Pro Gear|Home Page
PlanetDSG : Motorcycle Riding Gear, Accessories, Apparel and..
Performance Racing Store
Home - BIKES I RIDING GEAR I PERFORMANCE ACCESSORIES I SPARES
On the Rocks
and ofcourse the Crapster - cramster.in
 

Yogesh Sarkar

Administrator
You can take your Passion Pro to Ladakh, however it won't be all that comfortable. A motorcycle which is 150cc or more would do it with a lot more ease.
 

Barbara

Banned
Hello... Thank you so much for these tips. I think i follow all the tips.. I am a adventures person. And done many bike tours. i like it very much.
 
I think I can give my piece of advise because I did at least four very long tours including solo riding from Hyderabad to Leh and back on Ninja 250 cc and
recently a few days back Hyderabad to Shillong and back solo riding on Honda 250cc bike( I am 58 years old ). In between i did solo riding on RE CLASSIC 500 to Kanyakumari from Hyderabad and also on the
RE bike I did Hyderabad to Haridwar and back.
First. A cruiser like RE only is suitable is a myth. A sports bike would be as much good or even better for long tours.
My experience taught me these :
1) choose a bike with ABS ( this is a must. )
2) Get it serviced thoroughly at authorized dealer and ride it for a week after service.
3) you must carry a clutch lever and break lever as extra spares.
4) you must service the bike after reaching your target destination and before you start the return journey.
5) Eat good food,drink only mineral water and be sweet to everyone you may talk to on the way, do not insult,do not heckle ,do not lough too much.
6) when riding solo it is very important that others should not think that you have got lots of money. Stop only at petrol bunks for toilet use. fill the petrol always tankful.
7) carry slippers,tea-shirts,small water heater (electric) to make coffee in the morning,for those who can drink black coffee it would be a boon.
8) carry money ( all Rs.2000 notes worth about 12000 rupees in the tool kit under the seat which can be opened only with a key.
9) carry at least three ATM cards in three different places, a) under the seat in plastic cover,in shoulder bag, and in your purse.
20) carry cash in three different places. Must have a duplicate key in shoulder bag, along with colour xerox copies of all bike papers.
21) carrying a bed-sheet,woolen shawl,long towel is a must . many times hotel bed sheets you may not be able to use or sleep with piece of mind
22) talk to locals,natives, where you eat food,fill petrol bunks and talk to them about route, road conditions,social disturbances,strikes etc.,
23) start always in the morning , after coffee and bathing only. When you are drowsy actually you will not know it .
24) must use high quality helmet ( costing 4000 and above),must use jacket,must use boots,( not shoes) , carry shoes in the luggage, carry iodine,lots of cotton and bandage cloth.
25) inform your family ,make a call while having break fast and again while on dinner.
26) carry foot pump,tubeless puncture kit,thin resin plastic sheet,check chain tension,chain lubrication spray must be carried along and do not stop at lonely places or at a few hooligans are standing.
27) carry a water bottle,biscuit box,chocolates, half dozen hand kerchiefs ,one knife,small torch lite,cigarette lighter,extra bungy cord,extra rope,cellophane tape,small note book,small camera and do not show off.
28) AADHAR CARD colour xerox laminated card and PAN CARD in the like manner. Talk to truck drivers and taxi drivers about the route and road conditions. Do not take pillions.You must able to
move as much back and as much forward so that your bum won't burn. You must change the speed of bike, do not do any tail chase under any circumstances. Eat exactly on time.
 
I've done a few long solo motorcycle trips on a CBR250 (without ABS!), and a Triumph Tiger 800 XRx, and I have a different philosophy on what to carry when considering tools and spares.

All of this is my opinion and applies to solo riders. Riding in a group where spares can be distributed between many riders, and where one or more of the riders may be skilled mechanics, have different requirements. They also apply to modern (and non-enfield) motorcycles, most of which are very, very reliable.

I look at these factors when deciding what to carry.


1) Weight.

2) Weight.

3) Weight. Motorcycles have limited luggage carrying capacity, especially the smaller bikes we tend to ride in India. Extra weight also negatively affects how a bike handles, accelerates, and brakes. Motorcycle spares and tools can be heavy, so I try to limit what I carry.

4) The kinds of breakdowns that can I repair alone and by the side of a road. I'm a mediocre mechanic at best, so it's no point carrying a lot spares and tools that I have no idea how to use.

5) The kinds of breakdowns that will make the motorcycle completely unusable and prevent me from riding it to the next mechanic or service center. For example, a broken brake lever on is a problem, but you can still ride the bike carefully for quite a distance, so carrying a spare lever seems unnecessary.

6) How likely the breakdown is. Because of 1, 2, and 3, I try to eliminate spares and tools for breakdowns that are extremely rare. For example, broken chains are extremely rare IMO, especially if you are taking care of chain tension and cleaning/lubrication, so carrying spare links (even if I knew how to use them, see 4) seems pointless.


With that in mind, this is what I carry today for spares and tools

* Do Carry - The standard manufacturers toolkit (mine comes with basic spanners, allen keys, and screwdrivers needed by the bike).

* Do Carry - A multi-tool with pliers. It also has a small & sharp knife and a few screw driver bits.

* Do Carry - A vise-grip, they're like metal duct tape.

* Do Carry - Duct tape, tape some duct tape around an old credit card to make a flat & easily packable package.

* Do Carry - Zip ties, always useful like duct tape.

* Do Carry - A little steel wire (aka bailing wire), electrical tape, a couple of those small one-time use vials of loctite super glue, and some JB weld (like m-seal). All for random bodges that duct tape, a vise grip, and zip ties can't fix (very rare).

* Do Carry - a 3/8" socket wrench with a socket for the rear tire. This is heavy and takes up a lot of space, but I need to carry this to adjust chain tension because I have girly man muscles and cannot loosen the rear axle nut with the tiny wrench in the standard motorcycle toolkit. I don't carry this on the smaller CBR and take the bike to a local mechanic if the chain needs to be adjusted.

* Do Carry - A small led torch, but my smartphone can be used in a pinch so not really required.

* Do Carry - Some spare packing staps (I use rok-straps and kriega cam straps for luggage, so I carry a spare each incase a strap breaks).

* Do Carry - A few spare fuses, sizes depend on your bike. The main fuse is absolutely required, you may also want to carry spares for your lights, horn, etc. There's really no excuse for not always carrying spare fuses, your fuse box even has empty slots where you can store them.

* Do Carry - A small container of motor oil for top-ups if required. Most modern bikes are frugal with oil, so you will rarely need this, but the consequences of riding with low engine oil are severe enough that you should carry enough to top-up. This oil can be used to lube the chain if needed. But if your picky, carry your preferred chain oil/spray.

* Do Carry - A tubeless puncture repair kit with CO2 cartridge refills enough for one refill of the rear tire, and a tire pressure gauge. I carry a compact & light bicycle tire pump on the CBR, and a small electric tire compressor on the Tiger. Obviously, if you have tubed tires, carry a tube repair kit. Know how to use this kit, especially if it's a tubed tire. If you don't know how to use the kit then save some weight and don't bother carrying it, puncture repair wallas are everywhere on the highway.

* Do Carry - A spare clutch cable, already routed in place and zip tied to the old cable. Modern teflon coated cables don't break very often, so this isn't really required on my bikes. But it weighs almost nothing and is out of the way, so I have the service center route an extra cable on all my bikes.

* Do Carry - A little spare cash in small bills (~Rs 500 in 100s/and 10s) stashed on the bike. Useful to fill some gas and get you to a phone with real help if you lose your wallet. Don't carry Rs 12,000 unless your plan is to buy a replacement scooter if your bike breaks down and eats your wallet & atm card. And don't carry large bills, all the places you will need to use this emergency cash will not be able to break a Rs 2,000 note.

* Do Carry - A spare key in your luggage, useful if you lose your main keys.

* Do Carry - Ridiculous amounts of drinking water, at least 2 liters for an 8-hour ride in winter weather. Carry much more or expect to stop and top off your bottles several times in the summer. If you are riding in the summer, consider using insulated (steel thermos type) water bottles. They are bulkier and heavier than regular water bottles, but regular water bottles will heat up and give you lukewarm to warm water after a few hours riding in the sun. The thermos bottles will give you deliciously cold water throughout an all-day ride in the hottest summer weather, especially if you toss some ice-cubes in the bottle. Milton makes some excellent steel thermos bottles, the 1.8-liter size makes a great 'reservoir' and has an opening big enough for regular ice cubes, and the 750ml size bottles fit in most saddle bag water bottle pouches for your 'ready supply' of water.


What I no longer carry

* Don't Carry - Spare headlight & brake bulbs. This is a light weight spare, but the packaging tends to make it bulky. I don't carry one because I don't ride at night very often, so the intersection of when I ride at night with a bulb failure makes this failure sufficiently rare that I will never need these spares.

* Don't Carry - Spare clutch/brake levers. Seems like a rare failure to me, I've never broke one on the CBR, and have handguards on the Tiger. I could also ride carefully to the next city with a broken brake lever and could probably bodge something up with the vise grip if I had to ride with a busted clutch lever.

* Don't Carry - Spare chain links or a master link. I've never ever broken a chain in 28 years of motorcycle riding. If I did, I would have no idea how to use the spare link. Can you use a master link on a riveted o-ring chain? Would I need a chain breaker/riveter? I don't care, it's never going to happen & if it did I'll bite the bullet and put the bike on a tempo to take it to the next mechanic.

* Don't Carry - Spare coolant. Unlikely failure, and you can use distilled water in an emergency to get you to the service center for a flush and refill with coolant.


Re first aid kits.

With first aid kits for solo riders, it's important to consider two things. a) the type of injuries you are likely to sustain in a motorcycle accident and b) the type of injuries that you, the injured person will be able to treat. IMO, this means you only really need to carry supplies for two conditions, minor road rash and major bleeds. There's a lot of other things that can happen to you in an accident, but it's unlikely that you will be in any condition to fix it.

For road rash. I carry an antibiotic cream, and duoderm type bandages.

For major bleeds. I carry a lot of 4" gauze pads (they compress down and don't take up much space), including one of the large 'abdominal' size pads, and two Israeli bandages (available on amazon.in). Do a first aid course or watch youtube videos about how to stop a bleed.

I also carry some band-aids, Imodium and a few ibuprofen tablets for the inevitable booboo/diarrhea/headache/body-ache that will hit you an hour into a 14-hour ride. Everything else can be purchased at a pharmacy on the way or at your destination.
 
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