Saturday May 27th 2017

Motorcyclist Gift Guide

The holidays can be a depressing time for many motorcyclists. In most parts of the world the weather forces us off the road and we have to turn to magazines, movies or motorcycle projects to get our fix. There are lots of great gift ideas for motorcyclists that may help get them through this troubling time. Below are some functional and desirable gifts chosen by motorcyclists for motorcyclists.

Stocking Stuffers


cramp
One great invention is a CrampBuster or “throttle rocker.” This is a plastic lever you attach to your throttle that lets you twist the throttle (giving the bike gas) with the palm of your hand relieving pressure from the wrist. This can be a great gift for someone who has trouble with their wrists or rides long distances. I have always had one of these attached to all of my bikes and can barely ride without it. Don’t’ get this confused with “cruise control” this simply helps you twist the throttle – it does not hold it open on its own. You can pick one up for about $10.

tireAnother useful tool that all motorcyclists need is a tire pressure gauge. I prefer ones with an easy to read digital display so I do not have to guess what the readout is saying. One well regarded gauge is the Accutire MS-4710B. It has a digital display and the gauge is at a 90 degree angle which is easier to use on bike tires. Most auto gauges are more like a 45 degree angle so you have to bend and contort to get it on the bike. This gauge costs $12.

balaclavaIf the motorcyclist in your life rides when the weather is cold a Balaclava is a useful item to own. A balaclava is like a ski mask. Even with a full face helmet your face gets cold on a motorcycle in cold weather. The wind blows up under the helmet so you want to wear something that covers your neck and chin. If you pick up a balaclava you do want to find one that is tight fitting enough so that it won’t bunch up under a helmet.


Under $50

cycleworldA great inexpensive gift for anyone is a magazine subscription. For your favorite motorcyclists a subsciption to Cycle World Magazine would be a great choice. Magazines subscriptions are very inexpensive and this one will only cost you $12 for 12 issues. I read Cycle World every month and find it to have a good mix of ride stories, editorials, reviews of bikes and products and technical information.

longwayOne of my favorite motorcycle related movies are Ewan McGregor’s Long Way Round and Long Way Down shows. These two series were are about 10 one-hour episodes each that were originally made for TV. The series follows movie stars Ewan McGregor and Charlie Boorman as they take two epic motorcycle adventures. In the first series Long Way Round they travel from Scotland to NYC the “long way” – through Europe and Asia. In the second series Long Way Down the travel from Scotland to Cape Town traveling throughout Africa along the way. Both series are full of excitement as they encounter adventures with local people and culture, encounter mechanical failures and test their bodies endurance while riding in extreme climates. This 8-disc collectors edition costs just under $40.

pgr1A good way to spend the time when you can’t ride motorcycles is playing video games with motorcycles. My favorite motorcycling video game is Project Gotham Racing 4 In this game you race motorcycles in famous locations throughout the world. They are real locations including the Las Vegas strip, London, the famous Nurburgring race track in Germany and many more. There are a wide variety of motorcycles to race from an old 3 speed Norton all the way up to a Ducati 1098 and Kawasaki Ninja ZX-14. The game moves very fast, which keeps it exciting. I’d also like to think that playing a video game keeps my reflexes sharp for riding come spring.

Over $50

Safety gear is always important to motorcyclists and one of the biggest expenses after the bike itself. Every motorcyclists needs a good jacket and zumoMotorcycle specific GPS’s are always a fun treat. They are like the regular car GPS but made sturdier. They usually are waterproof to keep the elements out a built to withstand the vibrations of the motorcycle. A normal GPS, like a computer, will eventually be damaged by constantly being shaken. Unfortunately, these motorcycle specific GPS’s are not cheap. Tomtom makes the TomTom Rider 2 for a bit over $350. If that pricetag seems steep don’t even look at the Garmin Zumo 550 the Zumo costs a bit over $600 but is the most well reviewed among motorcyclists.

Would not recommend

These are just a few ideas to get you started shopping for a motorcycle gift. There are tons of other things out there you can get. I should mention some things you should not get. There are lots of cheesy items out there, signs that say “motorcycle parking only” or ornaments with a picture of a motorcycle. I would also be careful about buying brand specific items. A good example is Harley Davidson, they sell tons of products with their logo proudly displayed. However not everyone likes Harley Davidson – unless you know the person rides a Harley or you’ve heard them speak highly of the brand I would avoid buying these gifts.

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