The end of the year season is approaching and from now on, many Colombians are wondering what destination they will visit in their vacations. What they do know is that they want to ride their motorbike, as it seems an easy and economical way to travel.
The problem is that many do not know what are the general guidelines for traveling by motorcycle over long distances. Therefore, it is essential that drivers know what to do before and during their trip to have a safe and comfortable trip
Preparing the trip
It is important that any road trip is planned in advance ensuring that the motorcycle is in optimal mechanical conditions for its operation.
Thus, it is advisable to take the bike one or two weeks before the scheduled date of the trip to the workshop of confidence to make an inspection and review of the elements such as brakes, tires, engine, suspension among others. In this way, we guarantee that the motorcycle will find in optimal conditions the day of the trip.
And why weeks before the trip?
Because at the time of doing the maintenance of the vehicle there will be certain elements that must be tested before the trip, and the best thing is to do it in the city since if the repair is not well done you can request a guarantee in the workshop of trust.
The day of the trip
The day has arrived and, for your safety, it is important that you review:
- Tire inflation pressure. In addition, that the furrows of the same are in the indicated dimensions and not smooth, that do not have deformations and that the wheel does not have blows.
- State of the brakes (check that the brake pads are in good condition, both disks and bells, also check hoses and pipes, and that the brake fluid reservoir is at its indicated level).
- Look engine leaks (The engine must be without oil moisture and noise, also must have a good tuning: spark plug in good condition, if it is four times the valves are calibrated, that the carburetor or injectors are sending the proper mixture, that is not consuming oil etc.).
- Make oil change to the engine and the gearbox.
- Check the electrical system ( so that both low and high lights are in operation, the lights that all have their bulbs and work well, check the ignition system (if it is electronic), look at the battery status, the whistle have a sound that can be heard.
- Check the suspension system (that the telescopic rods are in good condition and that they are not wet in oil, also check dampers, scissor bushings and the chain ).
- The rear-view mirrors must be in good condition.
- The seat must be in good condition with respect to the one that is not dirty, deformed or cracked.
- Check the correct operation of the clutch and accelerator.
- Check validity of the documents ( Soat , registration, mechanical technical revision, driver’s license or pass, etc.).
Also, it is important that the helmet is in perfect condition (no bumps or dents), as well as the visor. In addition, it is important to include vests and reflective garments when driving the motorcycle at night .
Luggage for the motorcycle
In the market, there are rigid and soft luggage when traveling on a motorcycle
Rigid luggage is easy to install on the motorcycle’s chassis, which also prevents objects from moving in time with the motorcycle. They also have keys for both mounting and dismounting and for closing luggage.
The luggage can also be soft, in the form of bags or panniers that are easy to adjust to the back and side of the bike. These can be waterproof and with outer pockets for more ease when traveling.
The recommendation is to carry light luggage at the time of travel and adjust it to the motorcycle in such a way that its weight and position do not generate distractions or extra weight when traveling.
Guidelines when driving
- Always drive at the right speed.
- Accustomed to anticipate situations, because motorcyclists can become invisible to others.
- Always use the directionals, headlights, rear and rearview mirrors.
- If the floor is wet, avoid accelerating or braking on the lines that are drawn on the track.
- When you are about to stop, remember that it is important to use the two brakes and operate them intermittently to prevent the wheels from locking and losing balance: the front brake is 70% of the braking power and the rear brake is 30%.
- If you are going to overtake another vehicle, remember that you must always do it on the left side.
- The comfort of the body when driving must be guaranteed. For this reason, it correctly supports the feet in the stirrups or feet and in the middle part of the plant. The drive length of the foot block and brake pedal must be minimum.
- Respect the speed limits and traffic signals of the road.
- It is important to remember the passive safety equipment that both driver and parrillero should use for travel, ie, jacket, gloves and boots . The appropriate clothing is one that protects against rain or fall and that allows ventilation to cool . Avoid tight clothing that bothers the driver. Wear raincoats for the rain.
- Do not drive tired: Rest the night before and do not drink alcohol 24 hours before the trip will avoid mishaps on the road.
- Avoid overbooking: only the driver and the passenger are authorized by the National Traffic Code to travel on a motorcycle.
- Do not make dangerous overtaking: announce the change of lane in advance and use the directionals correctly. Avoid overpasses where the route indicates that it is prohibited.
- Beware of curves: When taking a curve , the angle of inclination must be correct to avoid accidents and falls. In the next article how to take curves on a motorcycle.
- Rest: at least every two hours, you must stop walking and rest, stretch your legs, eat and hydrate. It is essential to avoid the physical and mental fatigue of the driver.
- Drive in the mornings: It is at that moment that your attention and concentration are at their highest point.
- Avoid distractions while driving: the use of radios, cell phones, and other distractors divert your attention from the exercise of driving, which can put at risk your life and your safety.
- Clean your motorcycle: Avoid keeping the bike dirty, as this is more difficult to detect leaks and damage.
- Adjust the chain: The chain directly affects the way the engine transmits the power to the road. If it is loose, it will come out of the pinion and if it is squeezed too much it can break. A properly adjusted chain will transmit the power without difficulties and safely. Poorly adjusted chains also quickly wear out the sprocket wheels where the chain engages.