Shoei Giveaway: Time to Pick Your Fav

Thank you to everyone who is participating in our Endless Summer Shoei Giveaway! The contest ends tonight at midnight.  If you haven’t entered yet, you can enter here.

We are excited about the grand prize: The choice of any Shoei helmet from the internal sunshield family!

The Shoei GT-Air, the Shoei Neotec and the Shoei J-Cruise are designed for different riding styles and each one provides an advantage depending on how and what you ride.

It may be an easy decision. Maybe you’ve always wanted to try the flexibility of a modular helmet so the Neotec would be an obvious choice. Or maybe you’re ready to upgrade the coverage and go full face. The GT-Air is one of our best full face helmets and has a streamlined aerodynamic design; if full-face helmets are your thing, you won’t be disappointed. Or if you want to freedom of less coverage, the J-Cruise might be the best style for you,

Let’s take a closer look at the features so you can make a more informed decision about which one you would add to your collection. It will be up to you to pick the best looking color on that model.

These three models round out Shoei’s “advanced integrated sunshield” family by providing a full face, open face and modular style all with the same state-of-the-art technology.  The integration of this sunshield was done without any compromise. They didn’t thin out the shell or the liner to accommodate the retractable shade. It’s perfectly seamless with the design of the helmet.

The built-in dark smoke visor provides instant relief from sun glare in one quick motion with an easy to reach switch. It’s operated with a steel cable which was built to withstand heavy use. This drop down visor is the only one on the market that meets the ANSI standard for non-prescription eyeglasses. It’s distortion-free & blocks 99% of harmful UV rays.

All these helmets were developed in Japan using Shoei’s in-house Wind Tunnel to maximize aerodynamic performance. They all use Shoei’s Advanced Integrated Matrix - a high performance fiberglass/ organic fiber blend that creates an ultra-lightweight, rigid and resilient shell structure. The ventilation system on these helmets is exceptional. The front and rear vents work together by scooping the fresh air in from the front and creating a vortex to move the air out of the back of the helmet for maximum cooling.  There’s also an exhaust port in the neck roll.

Each helmet uses the 3-D Max-Dry liner which is antibacterial and wicks 2 times more moisture than standard nylon liners on the market today. The foam cheek pads provide a secure fit, which means less road noise, and are eyeglass compatible. They also feature removable ear pockets to accommodate a communication system, if needed.

Now some specifics.

The chin bar of the Shoei Neotec is held in place with an easy-open lock release button. It feels solid, as do all of the moving parts. It truly has a full face feel when the chin bar is down. It feels very secure. The Neotec comes in all the Shoei solids: White, black, anthracite, light silver, wine red, and matte black. It also comes in one “hi-viz” accented graphic, the Borealis TC-3.

 

The shell of the full face GT-Air was sculpted specifically for the US market with a focus on aerodynamics, stability and ventilation. The GT-Air comes with a chin curtain, breath deflector, the CNS-1 pinlock ready shield AND includes a clear pinlock lens.  The base plates on the shield are self adjusting and draw in the gasket when the shield closes for a better seal than we’ve ever seen. The dual ridge, rubber beaded eyeport seal is exceptionally airtight. The GT-Air comes in Shoei’s solids but it’s also offered in 3 Journey graphics and 2 Wanderer designs. (We personally are drawn to the stunning good looks of the Shoei GT-Air Journey TC-2, but don’t let that influence you.)

The Shoei J-Cruise “leaves absolutely nothing to be desired,” according to one reviewer. He goes on the say:

“The aerodynamic design and thick padding deaden wind noise and make the inside this helmet far quieter that with any other helmet I have owned. The aerodynamic windscreen design really does redirect air down from the rider’s neck and also helps provide a quiet ride. The optically correct screen and sun shield really do seem to render a clearer picture of the surroundings. The sun screen mechanism is extremely smooth and the shade itself does not hit my eyeglasses which is a very annoying aspect of many built in sun screen helmets. Everything about this helmet says “quality”, from design to fit/finish to performance. It is the most expensive helmet I’ve ever owned and well worth the extra bucks. The J-Cruise comes in all the standard solid colors offered by Shoei: black, white, wine red , anthracite, brilliant yellow, matte black and matte deep grey.

That’s a very high recommendation from a serious long distance rider.

If you are torn, don’t hesitate to call us and discuss the features of these three models: 888-343-5638. We hope that even if you don’t win, you will consider adding one of these quality helmets to your collection.

Good luck and ride safe.

Why It’s Unsafe to Ride a Motorcycle without Gloves

 

When it comes to the most essential riding gear, what comes to mind? Probably a helmet, a motorcycle jacket and some boots. What many riders fail to realize (unless they’ve had a fall) is that motorcycle gloves are some of the most crucial pieces of equipment. Here’s why:

Motorcycle Gloves and the First Instinct

One thing that all bikers (and humans, for that matter) have in common is the instinct to use their hands to brace the body during a fall. Unfortunately, there isn’t much we can do to change that, but we can prepare for it by wearing the right motorcycle gloves.

As riders we expect to fall at some point. Whether it’s a low speed tumble or a high-speed accident, we have all accepted this as a possibility. One thing we don’t have to accept is bruised and battered hands

If you fall off your motorcycle and you aren’t wearing motorcycle gloves such as the top rated Power Trip Grand National Gloves, there’s a good chance you could be off your bike for a long time. Not to mention you could be unable to work or enjoy other activities.

Letting the gloves take the brunt of the spill means you’re more likely to keep your digits. You can always get a new pair of motorcycle gloves but your hands are irreplaceable.

Getting a Grip

Whether it’s sweaty palms in the summer or cold numb fingers in the winter, any rider who has been around for a change of the seasons knows how easy it can be to lose a grip on the controls. That spells disaster for us as well as other drivers.

When you invest in a pair of good riding gloves like the Power Trip Grand National Gloves, you improve your grip exponentially and lessen the chances of an accident.

In summer, you can opt for lightweight motorcycle gloves but in the winter you should go for something more substantial, such as a full coverage gauntlet glove.

Considering the minimal effort it takes to slip on a pair of gloves before you ride and the benefits you get from doing so, it  makes sense to include motorcycle gloves as part of your essential gear.

The Importance of Motorcycle Gear

There’s just nothing quite like the experience of riding down the road and feeling free- free from stress, free from expectations.  Some may say that wearing a full face helmet, motorcycle jacket and motorcycle pants limits that… Wrong!

We know how much fun it is to have the wind whipping through our hair and yet we still wear motorcycle helmets because let’s be honest, riding and living to do it again is more important than feeling the breeze. And just as it is important to wear a motorcycle helmet, it is also important to wear all the gear while out riding.

So maybe you have years of riding under your belt and think that a motorcycle jacket  isn’t necessary.  Maybe motorcycle pants make you walk funny and, besides, you’ve been riding for so long you have nothing to worry about on the road. Remember our last post: Got Helmet Laws?, “When there is an incident, we are the ones who suffer”.  That’s why it’s so important to wear gear even if you have experience out on the road.

We feel it’s important to be prepared for that day where there is a lapse in judgement or run in with a distracted driver. Although we hope that day never comes, why take a chance with your life? Having the right motorcycle jacket and pants can make a difference.

What gear do you wear when you ride?

Personal Story

My father was riding once when the streets were wet from a recent rain. He made the mistake of riding in the middle of the lane as the oil started coming up on the road.

When he suddenly had to brake, he went down. He did have on both a motorcycle helmet as well as a motorcycle jacket but he wasn’t wearing motorcycle pants.  He had layered pants, long johns, and a couple pairs of socks. He was able to walk away from that accident with just a little road rash on one of his arms but his shin wasn’t so lucky: The kickstand went right into his leg. They had to use a whole bottle of peroxide to wash the wound. Perhaps if he had been wearing better gear that wouldn’t have happenned.  I am thankful to this day that he was wearing a motorcycle jacket and helmet and I am a firm believer in ATGATT. We just never know what the road has in store.

Got Helmet Laws?

I was recently discussing road experiences with some fellow riders and we all had stories about a close call with a distracted driver.  When there is an incident, we are the ones who suffer. We agreed that we never head out (no pun intended) without a helmet, ideally a Snell rated helmet, since we’ve all seen trouble on the road.

We started thinking about the helmet laws in different states and looked them up out of curiosity. We were surprised by the wide variation of the laws in place.

In looking more closely at the current helmet laws, it seems that three states have no helmet laws whatsoever and several others only require riders up to 17 or 20 years old to wear helmets. Here is the breakdown:

  • Laws requiring all motorcyclists to wear a helmet are in place in 19 states and the District of Columbia
  • Laws requiring only some motorcyclists to wear a helmet are in place in 28 states
  • There is no motorcycle helmet use law in 3 states (Illinois, Iowa, and New Hampshire)

Even for the experienced rider, it’s always a good idea to wear a motorcycle helmet. You may be a skilled rider, but what about the other guys on the road?

We sell motorcycle helmets, many of which are Snell rated helmets, and aim to bring you the best prices around for a very simple reason: We want to make helmets affordable and accessible to as many riders as possible. Having a motorcycle helmet is an excellent precaution (as well as law to a varying degree throughout the U.S.). Why take a chance with your life? So let’s ride safe and enjoy the freedom of the road with the best precaution available.

Do you agree with the helmet law in your state?

Mesh Motorcycle Jackets: Staying Cool While Riding on a Hot Day

You know what they say, if you can’t take the heat then stay out of the kitchen. But who wants to leave the bike the garage after waiting all winter to ride! There is plenty of motorcycle gear for summer that can keep you riding in just about any condition.

A breathable jacket is lighter than leather and has some advantages that leather doesn’t have.

The mesh motorcycle jacket is ventilated, often utilizing thicker, more open weave fibers on the fabric’s exterior. This helps direct air flow on to the rider, keeping the body cool and comfortable even while riding on a hot day.

T-Shirts and Tank Tops?

A thin t-shirt or tank top is tempting on a triple-digit afternoon, but in reality can set you up for harsh sunburn and leave you vulnerable to serious injury. Not to mention, when you’re cruising at 75mph. your body doesn’t have a chance to use your sweat to keep you cool!

When you wear a mesh jacket, the fabric reflects sunlight, allowing you to feel the sweat cooling your skin as it begins to evaporate, and protects your skin from the sun.

More Benefits of Mesh Motorcycle Jackets

Many of the breathable jacket designs that are on the market today use flow-through fabrics to encourage airflow, CE certified armor in the shoulder and elbows to increase protection, and waterproof liners to keep the rider dry during the pop-up rain shower.

Most importantly, the mesh motorcycle jacket makes riding on a hot summer day enjoyable again. What upgrades do you need to make to your summer riding gear?

 

Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month: The Road is Ours to Share

Motorcycle RiderJust in time for spring riding season, Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month kicks off in May. As a national initiative encouraging drivers and riders to “share the road” with each other, it not only calls for operators of passenger vehicles to watch out for motorcyclists but also reminds bikers of their responsibility while cruising down America’s roadways.

Driver Safety Tips

As part of Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month, drivers of cars, trucks and buses are reminded of the following:

  • Remember that motorcyclists have all the same rights and privileges as any motor vehicle driver on the roadway.
  • Avoid sharing the lane, and allow bikers a full lane width. The motorcycle needs room to maneuver safely.
  • Always use a signal before changing lanes or merging with traffic, so that bikers can maintain safe distance and lane position.
  • Likewise, keep in mind that not all motorcycle signals are self-canceling. Wait to ensure the rider is going to turn before you make your move.
  • Allow for extra room between you and the biker; they can stop more quickly than cars in dry conditions. A good rule of thumb is 3-4 seconds.
  • Stay alert and minimize distractions such as texting and talking on the phone.

Motorcyclist Safety Tips

Riders are reminded to obey traffic laws and observe safety guidelines not only during Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month but also throughout the year:

  • Always wear DOT-compliant motorcycle helmets while riding, whether you are the operator or a passenger. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that helmets saved the lives of 1,617 motorcyclists in 2011. If all motorcyclists had worn helmets, an additional 703 lives could have been saved.
  • Wear protective gear, such as motorcycle boots, motorcycle gloves, and apparel that is designed for your riding conditions.
  • Use reflective tape and wear bright colors to stay visible to other motorists.
  • Remember never to share the lane with another vehicle; they may not see you when speeding up, slowing down or changing lanes.

Whether you will be out on the open road this spring or you find yourself cruising through the city streets, keep in mind that Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month is for the protection of everyone. Share the road!

Spring Checklist: Or What Price Neglect?

Foolishness and neglect are the best of bedfellows and their moto spawn is all to often a concussion, at the least, and/or an addled and expensive hospital stay at next to worst.

Yesterday I went for what was for me an extended bike ride. On the return loop shifting gears got a bit wonky.  I dropped the chain into the gutter between the big chain ring and its  neighbor. I did it again…. and again. I left it in a medium low gear and made it home none the worse for wear. I laid the bike up and the following day, today, I sprayed up the works with chain lube prior to another ride assuming that the chain was just sticking. Chain lube is not holy water. Two blocks down the road at a light I stood on the topmost pedal and put my weight down on it to get me going. The chain jumped again – same spot and I went sideways over the bars and onto my back as the chain slipped and the pedal went sharply groundward. While I lay there part way into the intersection I was mostly surprised. All too often in an accident everything seems to slow down a bit. Not this one: push on the pedal, crunching noise , on yr. ass. Voila.

When I got the bike to the side of the road I looked it over closely. 4 of 5 bolts that hold the big chain ring on had worked themselves sloppy loose. They must have been a bit loose for a while and yesterday’s extended ride just worked on them and that is why the chain kept popping off. This is a foolish thing to have missed and a simple thing to rectify. I was already working up this post about checking your ride after the winter layup and this little safety vignette delivered itself to me in an awkward aerial ballet along with a bit of a stiff back.

There are some very good places to go on the intertoobz to get a spring checklist of things to attend to before you pull hibernating machine from its cave. I will list a couple at the bottom of this post and I welcome you to add yours. Read through them and then take the time to go through your bike. Cleaning it is often a very good way to start. Look it over.

Bring out the wrenches – tighten up bolts all around. Do you have leaks? Attend to it.  Fuel leaks, dripping oil – attend to it. Now is the best time. When the riding season comes in full bloom to your part of the world you won’t want to devote saddle time to nit-nit repairs. Do it now.

Tires: are they cracked? How much tread depth do you have? Are your wheels balanced and properly aligned in the frame. It doesn’t take much to check that out. Spoked rims? Are all of your spokes tight? Allow rims: any cracks?

Clutch and brake fluids topped off? Is this the year to flush the systems, bleed them and install new fluid? Are your electrics in order? All the lights and switches work? No frayed wires in the harness? Pull off the tank – take a look around.

In an upcoming post I am going to have a go at what tools and sundries are best to carry under the seat in the limited room available there. If you have tips and ideas for that post let me know. A CO2 cartridge tire filler device is already on my list.

Ok, try these links for spring cleaning and checkup ideas:

http://www.allaboutbikes.com/feature-articles/motorcycle-maintenance/6771-get-your-motorcycle-ready-for-spring

http://www.insurancehotline.com/spring-motorcycle-preparation-checklist/

 

Gerde Applethwaite