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    Auto Exchange : New addition of HONDA X-ADV to their fleet of rental bikes
    @Auto ExchangeTeam has introduced an exciting HONDA X-ADV to their list of rental bikes! Worth to explore if you are looking for any motorbike rentals.









     
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    SBF
    Motorcycle Windshield Maintenance
    Windshields do more than keep bugs, dirt and wind off you. They also say a lot about how well you take care of your bike. These Quantum hardcoated polycarbonate windshields from National Cycle deserve premium cleaning products like Novus polish and scratch remover and Rain Zip water repellant, designed for plastics (see images below).
    When you spend a lot of money on an accessory, part of the enjoyment is seeing it on your bike. But if that accessory is a windshield, you want to see right through it. Unfortunately windshields, both the aftermarket and the OE kind, are right out there in front of you where they’re vulnerable to dirt, rocks, bugs and other damage that can leave them battle-scarred after only a few riding seasons. There’s no way to beat bad luck, but according to National Cycle’s Paul Gomez you can tilt the odds in your favor with regular care and cleaning.
    National Cycle uses two materials for its shields. The first is a hard-coated polycarbonate with either FMR (formable mar resistance) or National Cycle’s proprietary Quantum hardcoating. Polycarbonate is more impact resistant than the other material, acrylic. In its plain form acrylic is brittle and cracks easily, so National Cycle uses a high-impact acrylic that combines good optics with more resistance to damage.
    This chart from National Cycle illustrates the differences between polycarbonate, high impact acrylic and standard acrylic.
    “With acrylic you want to be very careful not to use any type of abrasive cleaners, because it scratches easily,” says Gomez. “We have a special cleaner for acrylic, or you can use warm soapy water.” Any commercial cleaner that says it’s made for use with plastics is probably fine, too, but avoid cleaners with petroleum products, ammonia or kerosene because these can all damage hardcoating. The same caveats about abrasive cleaners and harsh cleaners apply to hardcoated polycarbonate, too; although the hardcoating is more resistant to abrasion, you can’t grind away at it forever.
    Another product to avoid on polycarbonate and acrylic windshields is Rain-X. “Rain-X and plastics do not play well together,” Gomez warns. Instead, he says, consider using National Cycle’s own Rain Zip coating, which does to plastic the same thing Rain-X does with glass, but without harming the underlying material. “It also works well on helmet visors,” he adds.
    Novus polish and scratch remover is great for windshield maintenance.
    Whatever you use to clean your windshield, start off by soaking paper or cloth towels in water and laying them on the windshield. Leave them there for 15 minutes or so to soak through and soften the dried-on bug guts and dirt, then scrape off the stubborn bits with your fingernail––don’t wipe them off with a rag or you might scratch the very surface you’re trying so hard to protect.

    The first step in any windshield cleaning is laying a wet fabric or paper towel over the surface to soften up dried-on bugs and dirt.
    Use a cleaning cloth made of microfiber, terrycloth or cotton flannel, and make doubly sure it’s clean. Paper towels are too abrasive, and shop rags, even though they look clean, can pick up metal chips and other scratchy stuff that remains even after a thorough washing. A clean cotton T-shirt is the last-resort choice, but make sure it just came out of the washing machine.

    RainZip is designed for use on plastics, like windshields and helmet visors.
    Plastic cleaners are designed to work in cool temperatures so park your bike in the shade before you start. Whether you’re using soapy water or a plastic cleaner, apply it gently—you don’t need to apply much pressure—and turn the cloth frequently to carry picked-up grit away from the surface. Rinse the cloth often, too, to get the small stuff out.
    To remove scratches Gomez recommends a plastic polish like Novus. “But it’s a case-by-case thing,” he says, “depending on how deep the scratch is. Novus is low-abrasive, but the trick is to remove the scratch without going through the hardcoat.” Crack repair is another iffy area. In some cases you can stop a crack from spreading by drilling a small hole at the end, but first check the manufacturer’s warranty to see if cracks are covered. You might be better off swapping for a new windshield than making your old one worse.

    A clean and well-maintained windshield improves any bike’s looks and comfort.
    This National Cycle Plexifairing is also easily removable for that wind-in-your-face rush.
    The last step in a thorough cleaning is applying a coat of protectant such as non-abrasive spray wax. This acts as an extra layer of protection against dirt, and makes subsequent cleanings easier by preventing the goo from sticking to the surface of the windshield. Use the same kind of towel or cloth you used to apply the cleaner, but make sure it’s clean and unused since the last laundry day or you could just end up back where you started. 
    Article Credits: ridermagazine.com
     
     
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    SBF
    !! Chong Aik:  Trax TG-263E 2002 Open face Helmet Promotion !!
    @ChongAik Have launched an online promotion for TRAX TG263E helmets!   SHOP NOW AT SHOPEE: https://shopee.sg/search?keyword=tg263e&shop=292911042 Get protected with the open-face helmet that offers all the essential features ideal for your daily ride with #TRAX TG263E - now with more graphics available to suit every riders style! Matt Black Italy Pearl White Italy       Matt Black/Red-G1 Gloss White-G3 Gloss Black-G4 Available in STORES, SHOPEE, and ONLINE STORE! PSB APPROVED Helmet Available in most bike shops / service and repair outlets in Singapore! Purchase from us and have our products delivered right at your doorsteps at the comfort of your home! Visit and message us at www.chongaik.com.sg to order! Various colors available: https://www.chongaik.com.sg/409-trax-tg263e Send us a message for any enquiries! Visit us at: Helmets & Apparels Showroom 45 Desker Road, Singapore 209576 +65 6294 2532/1 9am-6pm | Mon-Fri 9am-5pm | Sat Powerstar Motor P/L 151 Jalan Besar, Singapore 208869 +65 6392 5803 10:50am-7:30pm | Mon-Sun Join SingaporeBikes on Telegram for more of the latest news, special offers, reviews of motorcycles, and more!


    SBF
    Stayin’ Safe: Proper Use of the ‘Brottle’
    For ultimately smooth braking transitions, combine brake and throttle.
    When taught to ride motorcycles, we learned to use the throttle and brakes as separate controls. To speed up, roll the throttle grip toward you. To slow down, roll the throttle the away from you. To slow more quickly, roll off the throttle and then apply the front and rear brakes. In that order.
    After slowing, when it’s time to reapply power, we were taught to ease off the brakes and then, as a separate motion, roll on throttle. Unfortunately, those throttle/brake transitions can be jerky, tend to upset the bike’s chassis and, when riding with a passenger, can have helmets banging out Morse code.
    Fortunately, the two controls don’t have to be mutually exclusive. For unmatched smoothness, think of the brake and throttle as one combined control. Let’s call it the “brottle.”
    1) Apply brakes while the throttle is steady. 2) Roll off the throttle as needed to aid slowing. 3) Begin to roll throttle back on… 4) …while slowly releasing the brakes to seamlessly resume travel speed.
    Combining brake and throttle creates a push-me, pull-you tension that stabilizes the chassis while also providing the option to seamlessly add more brake or more throttle as desired without any chassis disruptions.
    Try it on an open, straight section of road. Maintain a steady throttle and squeeze the brake lever (and pedal) against it. You should feel the weight of the bike smoothly transfer from rear to front.
    Once a slower speed is achieved, smoothly release the brakes and let the throttle take over again. The weight will shift gently back to the rear wheel. Experiment with different degrees of brake pressure.
    Got it? Now try the “brottle” technique on the approach to a slight or moderate curve, completing the full transition before entering the corner.
    When approaching sharp bends, progressively squeeze the brakes against the steady throttle but this time, begin rolling off the throttle as you continue to squeeze the brakes (avoid rolling throttle all the way off).

    When you’ve slowed enough, begin rolling the throttle on as you slooowwly release the brakes. Throughout the entire process, the brakes and throttle are overlapped, working together as one control.
    With a little practice using the “brottle,” your braking transitions will soon be smoother than ever!
    Article Credits: ridermagazine.com
     
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    SBF
    Motorcycles Fun Facts | Do You Know Them?
    10 Fun Facts About Motorcycles That Will Blow Your Mind
    Reading time: 3 mins
    When were motorcycles first made? What’s the longest journey ever taken on a motorbike? And which Hollywood star owns a motorcycle manufacturing company? Whether you’re a novice motorcycle rider or a pro that’s been riding for many years, we guarantee that some of these motorcycle facts will surprise you!
    From historical info to record-breaking trivia about motorcycles, we’ve listed 10 interesting motorcycle facts to share at your next riders club gathering. We bet there are a few that will stump even the best of motorcycle historians out there. So, let’s go through the list to find out what they are!
    1. Motorcycles have been around since the 1800s! 
    Yes, motorcycles have been around for over 100 years. The first internal combustion, petroleum-fueled motorcycle was the Daimler Reitwagen designed in 1885. It was built by two German inventors; Gottlieb Daimler and Wilhelm Maybach.
    2. The term “motorcycle” was first used in 1894
    Did you know that the motorcycle was first referred to as a ‘Petrol Bicycle’? It was only in 1894 when a German company called Hildebrand & Wolfmuller became the first to commercially manufacture the two-wheeler. The company referred to the vehicle as ‘motorrad’ (in German), which directly translates to motorcycle.
    Colonel Lawrence astride a Brough Superior SS100 motorcycle 3. Helmet use for motorcycle riders was mandated after Colonel T.E. Lawrence died in a motorcycle accident
    The story goes that Colonel Lawrence – immortalised as Lawrence of Arabia – was riding his motorcycle, a Brough Superior SS100, near his home, when he almost hit two boys on bicycles. He maneuvered to avoid them, but unfortunately got thrown off his bike. He succumbed to serious head injuries a few days later. 
    Realising that his death could have been avoided, one of Britain’s very first neurosurgeons, Hugh Cairns, started researching the importance of crash helmets. His work was published in Britain’s Medical Journal, titled: “Head Injuries in Motorcyclists – The Importance of the Crash Helmet”. It was through his research and findings that the use of motorcycle helmets have become a requirement by law globally.
    1904 Harley Davidson 4. The first-ever Harley Davidson motorcycle only went 40km/h
    Invented by William S. Harley, Arthur Davidson, the first “real” Harley-Davidson motorcycle was completed in 1904. At that time, the duo immediately took part in a motorcycle race with their prototype model, finishing in fourth place. 
    Although not as fast as it can go now, another interesting fact is that the very first Harley Davidson had a single-cylinder engine that actually used a tomato can as its carburetor.
    ‘Smalltoe’ – world’s smallest motorcycle 5. The smallest functional motorcycle in the world is called ‘Smalltoe’
    Tom Wiberg, from Sweden, built ‘Smalltoe’ – the world’s smallest motorcycle – standing 2.55 inches tall and weighing a mere 2.4 pounds. The Guinness World Records certified Wiberg as a record holder in 2003 for making the smallest functional motorcycle in the world.
    Smalltoe has an engine that can produce an output of 0.3 horsepower with a speed of 1.24 mph. The record was set when Wiberg rode his motorcycle as far as  32.8 feet, proving that it is a rideable motorcycle.
    6. The longest journey ever made with the use of a motorcycle took over 10 years to complete
    Emilio Scotto is an Argentine adventurer, photojournalist, and writer. As of 2009, he holds the Guinness record for the world’s longest motorcycle ride, spanning 10 years, 232 countries and a total distance of 457,000 miles (735,000 km). He rode on the “Black Princess” a 1980 Honda GoldWing GL1100 motorcycle.
    This was considered a single journey because he didn’t return to his country of departure until the end, which was 10 years later.
    7. The record for the longest-ever backwards motorcycle ride was almost 5 hours
    Doing it a little differently in India, Havildar Pradeep set the world record for the longest ride backwards on a motorcycle. Yes, on 10 November 2020, Havildar actually rode 204.4 km in 4 hours 47 minutes, facing the other way as his motorcycle roared forwards.
    Of course, we have to mention that riding a motorcycle without holding the handlebars is very dangerous. It is an action that we’d never recommend as riding safety should always be your top priority.
    Neiman Marcus Limited Edition Fighter 8. The world’s most expensive motorcycle costs $11 million! 
    Most of us would think of brands like Harley Davidson, Ducati or BMW when thinking of luxury motorcycles. But do you know the world’s most expensive bike was manufactured by a company that designs high-end fashion?
    Yes, the Neiman Marcus Limited edition Fighter, holds the title for most expensive motorcycle ever sold. Believe it or not, it was auctioned for a whopping $11 million in 2012!
    9. The most popular motorcycle companies also manufactures other kinds of products
    Did you know that most of the popular motorcycle manufacturers we know, produce so much more than just motorcycles? For example:
    Kawasaki also manufactures space rockets, ships, trains, personal water crafts, jet engines, electronics, helicopters, equipment tractors, and even missiles. Suzuki presently makes wheelchairs, cars, and marine engines. Yamaha started as a piano manufacturer. It still makes musical instruments today, besides other products like golf carts, car engines, industrial robots, boats, electronics, and wheelchairs. Keanu Reeves and Gard Hollinger with a motorcycles they designed together 10. Keanu Reeves has his own motorcycle manufacturing company
    Lastly, do you know which Hollywood celeb designs and makes his own motorcycles?
    The Matrix star, Keanu Reeves, was a motorcycle enthusiast before he rode them in movies. After surviving a motorcycle accident in the ‘80s, mixed with his deep passion for motorcycles, he founded his own motorcycle company; Arch Motorcycle Company in 2011.
    Good Behavior now rewarded with NCD30 Highest NCD in town. Only at DirectAsia.
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    SBF
    Motorcycle Helmet Buyer's Guide 
    A comprehensive guide on buying your first (or next) motorcycle helmet.

    Unsure What to Look for
    When Shopping For A New Helmet?
    You're in the right place.
    Our motorcycle helmet guide will help you find the right lid for your head shape, riding style, and budget.
    Why We Created This Guide
    Helmets protect your head from the elements and, as will happen from time to time, asphalt too. They’re a seemingly simple thing, but like all things touched by the march of progress, there’s much more to a good helmet than what meets the eye.
    We have been reviewing motorcycle helmets for over 20 years and are the most reliable source of unbiased advice. When our team tests a helmet, we beat wear it, ride in it, and beat it up for up to six weeks to understand how it performs in the real world. Then we tell you what we think, the good and the bad, so you can make better buying decisions.
    To create this motorcycle helmet buyers guide, we sat down and asked ourselves: what makes a helmet "good", what makes one "great", and what are the most important things to look for when buying a new helmet? Answering those questions and providing a list of recommendations took plenty of research, referencing, and collaboration. We connected with major brands, motorcycle experts and, of course, our comprehensive library of motorcycle helmet reviews.
    What Does a Helmet
    Do, Anyway?
    Hype and fancy integrations aside, a helmet's primary job is protecting your head.
    The first thing to buy when you’re planning on riding a motorcycle for the first time is your helmet. At least, that’s what you do if you’re smart.
    A helmet will do more than protect your noggin (though a good helmet will do a good job of that). It will also protect you from wind, rain, snow, road debris, and noise pollution; prevent you from getting ear aches; heck, modern helmets stream music, GPS, and smartphone integration.
    At its most basic, a helmet is essentially three components: a hard outer layer (called the shell), a soft inner layer (usually made of expanded polystyrene or polypropylene), and some kind of mechanism to keep the whole thing strapped to your head.
    Most modern helmets made today provide superior protection compared to helmets from 10+ years ago. Many advancements have occurred in recent years that have made helmets lighter, safer, and more feature-rich. Advanced materials, such as carbon fiber, improved face shield optics, and new safety mechanisms (such as MIPS, multidirectional impact protection system) that take full advantage of computer-assisted design, provide wearers with more convenience, comfort, and protection than ever.
    What to Consider When Shopping Helmets
    Price
    While price shouldn’t be the primary factor that dictates your helmet purchase, it’s rare that we are afforded the luxury of shopping unrestricted by budget.
    The price of a helmet is influenced by several things, such as the materials used, technology integrated, certifications, and brand. There are some other intangibles as well; Arai helmets, for example, are all handmade and their premium over segment-comparable helmets reflects that.
    Entry-Level Helmets
    If you’re just getting into riding, budget $300 for your helmet. You don't have to spend $300 to get a good helmet, but you will find great helmets in and around that price point.
    Price points climb when you get into more highly-engineered/specc'd out helmets, helmets made with advanced materials (such as carbon fiber), or helmets that come with a lot of integrated technology. A racing helmet made of carbon fiber, while being much lighter than a traditional helmet, will have a price tag to match the "exotic" materials used.
     
    Mid Range & Premium Helmets
    $500 - $750 gets you into premium helmet territory, where helmets offer great sound management, airflow, comfort, and protection. You will find excellent helmets here with built-in functions, including photochromic visors, integrated intercoms, integrated sun visors, and more.
    Once you're into the four-figure territory, you're looking at the best of what you can buy right now. Handmade, made with carbon fiber, application-specific, limited colorways, etc.
    We recommend that you avoid purchasing a high-end helmet until you've gotten a better sense of how you like to ride and what style of helmet you like. If you're just getting into riding, investing in expensive gear and losing interest is frustrating. And really, the difference between a $500 helmet and a $1,000 one is not twice as good or twice the helmet.
    A good rule of thumb to follow is to spend enough to protect your head, but not so much that you need to pull back from other gear. We’re advocates for riding ATGATT.

    Safety

    The first and foremost purpose of your helmet is to protect your head in the event of an accident. If there is one area that you should not compromise on, it’s safety. You want a quality helmet that will provide you with the protection you need.
    At a minimum, your helmet must pass local regulations. In North America, that’s the DOT – Department of Transportation. In the EU, it’s ECE – Economic Commission for Europe. Helmets that have DOT/ECE approval are safe and road legal. However, if you want to ensure your helmet provides maximum protection, you will also want to look for SNELL or SHARP certification.
    Note szmost DOT or ECE-approved helmets are not actually tested prior to certification. The helmets are built to specific standards outlined by DOT or ECE, but are not actually required to be tested to prove their compliance.
    If you want proof in the pudding, you need to look at third-party helmet safety standards.
    Third-Party Helmet Standards & Testing Programs
    SNELL is a non-profit, independent organization that is more thorough and rigorous in its testing compared to DOT standards. Helmets that receive SNELL certification have proven themselves to withstand impact and fit tests; however, SNELL certification often adds somewhat to the price of a helmet.
    SHARP is a British government helmet safety program that hands-on tests and evaluates helmet impact resistance and other aspects of rider protection.
    See also: the differences between DOT, ECE, and SNELL.
    Fit & Safety
    Fit is one of the most important aspects of how equipped your helmet is to protect you. A helmet that fits poorly may fall off in an impact or compromise its ability to transfer forces effectively.
    To be clear, a DOT/ECE approved helmet that fits well is a safe helmet to wear and ride in. A guide to helmet fit is a bit further down in this page!
    Fit & Comfort
    How a helmet fits is critical for its ability to protect you. A helmet that fits well not only provides maximum protection for its wearer, but also allows for a more enjoyable ride. You’ll be amazed and how long you can hit the back roads with a great-fitting helmet.
    What Influences How Well a Helmet Fits?
    Size – If you’re unsure of how to determine your size, go here.
    Materials – Foam comes in many different densities, as do most materials used a helmet/helmet-liner.
    Your head shape – Let’s face it: we don’t all have the same head shape. Some helmets work better with certain shapes. We discuss this further below.
    Customization – Many helmets come with pads/inserts/removable sections that can greatly alter how a helmet fits.
    Weight – Riders should place more emphasis on the weight of their helmet. The lighter the helmet, the less energy it transfers upon impact. Plus, a lightweight helmet is much more enjoyable and comfortable to wear for long periods.
    We consider helmets that weigh under 3.25 lbs / 1.47 kg "light", 3.25 - 4lbs / 1.47 - 1.8 kg "average", over 4 lbs / 1.8 kg to be "heavy".
    See also: helmet size chart.
    Type
    Helmets come in many shapes and sizes, categorized by their defining style or use. We break down the differences between the helmet types in way more detail below.
    Common Motorcycle Helmet Types
    Full face – This type of helmet provides the most protection. As its name implies, it covers most (if not all) of your face.
    Open face – This type of helmet does not have a chin guard, leaving the face exposed.
    Modular – A combination between an open and full face helmet, a modular helmet allows you to remove or flip up the lower section of the helmet.
    Off-road / motocross – These helmets typically feature sun visors, extra chin protection, and additional venting. However, many also come without a visor and can be worn with goggles.
    Half – Offering the least protection compared to other helmet types, a half helmet covers the top portion of the head and leaves the rest exposed.
    Dual-sport – Dual-sport helmets can be worn on or off-road. Many feature integrated sun visors, removable face shields, and other features that make switching them up between on and off-road riding easy.
    Full-Face Helmets
    The best all-around helmet type you can buy. A full-face is always an appropriate helmet to wear.
    Strengths
    Maximum protection from wind, bugs, and road debris
    Quieter than other helmet types
    Needed for on-track racing
    More bang for your buck compared to modular helmets
    Cons
    Not as open as other helmet types
    Not as easy to doff/don as a modular or open face helmet
     
    Modular (Flip-Up) Helmets
    Riders that want the convenience that comes with an open face helmet, but also want the protection and comfort offered by a full-face.
    Strengths
    Many of the same safety and hazard protections that come with a full-face helmet
    Flip-up the chinbar for that open road feeling
    Available at a variety of price points
    Cons
    Hinge mechanism introduces additional weight and complexity
    While safer than open face or half helmets, the chinbar isn't as securely attached as a full-face helmet and it isn't as safe as one either.
    Can be more expensive than full-face helmets for comparablef eatures
    Dual-Sport Helmets
    Riders that intend to spend equal amounts of time on and off-road. If you’re riding a dual-sport bike, a dual-sport helmet is likely a great match .
    Strengths
    Lighter than comparable full-face or modular helmets
    Visor is often removable, making the helmet suitable for wearing with goggles
    Many come with sun-peaks
    Excellent airflow/venting
    Cons
    Not quite a full-face, and not quite an open-face helmet either...
    Removing visors from some can be finnicky.
     
    Open-Face Helmets
    If your riding is spent behind a large windscreen or on a machine with fairings, you'll love an open-face helmet. Lacking a chinbar, open-face lids don't offer as much protection as full-face or modular helmets do, but their airflow can't be topped!
    Strengths
    Lightweight compred to other helmet types
    Generally more affordable
    Excellent airflow/venting
    Cons
    Not as protective as helmets with a chinbar
    Not all open-face lids come with a visor
     
    Half Helmets
    If you want the wind against your face while you ride, a half helmet is perfect for you. They allow you to really enjoy that open-road feeling and the freedom associated of riding your machine.
    As good as a half helmet is at making you feel free and connected to the road, it is also the least protective type of helmet out there.
    Strengths
    Generally the lightest lids out there
    Comfortable and with excellent airflow
    Easier to way for long rides
    Cons
    The least protection of any helmet (your face and the side of your head is more or less unprotected
     
    A Properly Fitting Helmet Provides Superior Protection
    (& Feels Better to Wear)
    One of the most common questions new riders ask when buying a new helmet is “what makes a helmet comfortable to wear?”. This is a good question because the answer is very personalized; there is no “one-size-fits-all” approach to helmets. There are two reasons for this: your head shape and the helmet liner.
    In order for a helmet to provide maximum protection, it is essential that it fits you properly. This means a snug, secure fit that provides maximum coverage in the event of a crash.
    The ideal helmet will be both secure and comfortable. In order to accomplish this, it’s important that you choose the appropriate helmet for your head shape.
    Why Your Head Shape Matters
    Your head shape, along with your jawline, plays a significant factor in helmet comfort. While everyone’s head is shaped a little differently, there are roughly three predominant shapes:
    Long Oval – Head shape is longer from forehead to back of skull vs. ear to ear.
    Intermediate Oval – The most common head shape. The front-to-back measurement is slightly longer than ear-to-ear.
    Round Oval – Both front-to-back/ear-to-ear measurements are nearly the same.
    This doesn’t mean that there will be a helmet for each head shape; in fact, motorcycle helmet manufacturers seem to have been converging towards a “neutral” intermediate oval over the last few years.
    Determining Your Head Shape & Helmet Size
    Helmet Interior & Helmet Liner
    This is a multifactorial element to consider: the material that makes up the motorcycle helmet’s liner should feel comfortable against the skin; the internal padding of the helmet should act as a comfortable cushion between the head and the helmet internals; the liner shape should perfectly match your head shape. The perfect helmet would be so comfortable that the rider would forget that it’s there.
    Most helmets allow for their liners to be removed and washed, which you should do periodically (when it smells, it's time for a wash).
     
    Recommended Motorcycle Helmets
    Our recommended helmets for each type.
    Best Dual Sport Helmets for 2022
     
    Best Full Face Helmets for 2022
     
    Best Modular Helmets for 2022
     
    Best Open Face Helmets for 2022
     
    Article credits: webbikeworld

    SBF
    Group Riding Best Practices For Enjoyable and Safe Experience
    Riding in a group, especially in busy urban areas, can be either fun and empowering or stressful and even dangerous. Follow the guidelines in this story, and hopefully your next group ride will be an enjoyable and safe experience. For some, group riding is a quintessential part of the motorcycling experience, a rolling social gathering that happens as naturally as a family party. It’s a fun way to keep a group together when traveling, and modern communication technology has only made it easier. Yet even seasoned riders, if they spend most of their time solo or don’t know the others in the group well, can feel a bit unsure about the rules, expectations and etiquette of group riding. So to help you navigate the dos and don’ts of riding in a group and become the person everyone likes to ride with, we’ve put together this handy primer.
    The Basics
    Staggered formation. You’ve probably noticed how groups of riders space themselves out within their lane; we call this “staggered formation.” The purpose is pretty simple: it allows each rider a clear view ahead, along with space to the side for any quick or sudden maneuvering in the case of road hazards like potholes, rocks, critters, debris, etc. The leader is typically in the left portion of the lane, rider No. 2 is in the right portion, rider No. 3 in the left and so on. The Motorcycle Safety Foundation recommends spacing yourself so that there is a two-second gap between you and the rider directly in front of you (see graphic below). As speeds increase, that means a longer distance, and at slow speeds (especially in heavy traffic areas) that means closing ranks and tightening up the formation.
    Who rides where? Put an experienced, responsible rider in the lead position. The leader should obviously know the route you’re taking. The least experienced rider in the group goes next, in the No. 2 position behind and to the right of the leader. The last position, also called the “sweep,” should be another highly experienced rider. The sweeper should carry a first aid kit and tools, and should also know the route in case the group gets separated.
    Staggered formation is fundamental to group riding. The Motorcycle Safety Foundation recommends maintaining a two-second gap between you and the rider directly in front of you, and roughly a one-second gap between you and the next rider in the formation. At slower speeds, that means tightening the ranks. Graphic courtesy the Motorcycle Safety Foundation. Group size. Try to keep your group manageable — between five and seven riders is a good size. If necessary, break up large groups into smaller ones. 
    Lane changes. Good leaders will be watching their mirrors, and will wait until there is a large enough space for the whole group to move over. Sometimes that’s just not possible, in which case the riders make individual lane changes, returning to their positions within the new lane. Maintain your speed when changing lanes! Remember that there are riders behind you who need to move over as well.
    Communication. This is especially important in a group. The leader will often activate his or her turn signals early; following riders should also use their signals, essentially passing the message back. Some groups also like to use hand signals for upcoming turns: left arm straight out to the side for a left turn, left arm raised at a 90-degree angle for a right turn. There are a few other “universal” hand signals in the moto world: extending a hand down and opening and closing your fist tells another rider their turn signal is still on, and sticking a foot or hand out indicates a hazard in the road on either the left or right side. Below is a chart from the Motorcycle Safety Foundation showing some other common hand signals. Each group has their own way of communicating, so don’t be afraid to ask before you leave!
    This chart from the Motorcycle Safety Foundation shows common hand signals used in group riding. Still, you should always check with your group to see if they use any special signals or ways of communicating. Curves. When the road gets twisty, throw the staggered formation out the window. Forming a single file line gives you the space you need to lean and adjust your line if necessary. Remember this might also mean giving the rider ahead of you some extra space. 
    Passing. Never blindly follow riders ahead of you when they pull out to pass a car. Move over to the left portion of the lane and wait until you have a clear view of the road ahead. That may mean waiting until the rider in front of you is safely back in the lane ahead of the vehicle you’re passing. Then check your mirror to make sure another speed demon isn’t trying to make the pass from behind you.
    Being passed. Being passed by a single vehicle is easy: just let them go. There may be times when the vehicle doesn’t have the room to get around the whole group in one go. Don’t take offense, even if they’re obviously just being impatient. Open up a space and let them back in. There’s no sense in riding too close and putting yourself and the rest of your group in danger. 
      But what if it’s another group of riders passing yours? Well, first off get in the habit of watching your mirrors (see Advanced Course below). That way you won’t be startled when riders start blasting past you. As the sweep rider, if you see another group approaching from behind, move to the right and wave them past. This lets them know that a) you see them, and b) you’re going to maintain your position to the right to safely allow them to pass. As a mid-pack or lead rider, keep an eye on your mirrors. If the headlight of the bike behind you moves to the right, look for passing riders and move right as well, waving them by. This can take time as the second group filters past, but just hold your right-side line and give your fellow riders a wave as they move on.
    Staying together and on-track. Each group has its own procedure for this, and it’s something that should be discussed before you leave. Some groups prefer to stay in a pack at all times, with the leader pulling over immediately if you get separated, for example at a red light. Others, especially on long trips or when riding off-road, use the buddy system or back-marker technique. When approaching a turn or confusing intersection, check your mirrors. If you don’t see the rider behind you, pull over and wait. Basically you’re making sure that each turn is marked, and the sweep rider can pick up any stragglers.
    Advanced Course
    Now that you’ve got the basics down, let’s talk about being a better group rider. Instead of blindly following the tail of the rider in front of you like a bored packhorse, being aware and proactive will make you a more proficient, safer rider with whom others want to ride!
    Awareness. This is something you should be practicing anytime you’re on the bike, not just in a group. You’re always scanning ahead, checking your mirrors and watching the patterns of other drivers, right? Don’t get lazy just because you’re surrounded by your “pack!” Watch your leader. If your group is stuck behind a slow-moving vehicle and the leader starts to peer around them, you can guess that a pass is imminent. Be ready to change lanes or pass quickly, safely and efficiently, keeping the whole group moving. If you’re on a multi-lane highway, the sweep rider could move over early and “set a pick” for the riders ahead, keeping the lane open for them to easily slide over.
    Look farther than 20 feet ahead of you. See that “stale” green traffic light that could be getting ready to turn yellow? Be prepared for the rider in front of you to hit the brakes if the light changes. See the guy in the SUV in the next lane over, slowing down and looking over his shoulder? He likely wants to change lanes — keep an eye on him, and consider slowing to let him in, especially if your group is a large one.
    Go with the flow. Group riding rules are not always black and white. For example, on long highway stretches it’s common for the group to spread out as everyone finds their own pace. Just be sure that you follow your group’s established procedure for back marking at turns. In areas of heavy traffic and slow speeds, try to keep your formation tight. Don’t be “that rider,” who dawdles and allows large gaps to form between you and the rider(s) ahead, then bolts through yellow lights at the last second, leaving those behind high and dry or forced to attempt to make the light. If your group hits some twisties and you find that you can’t keep up, don’t worry, just ride at your own pace. Wave the rider(s) behind you past if they want to go faster; at minimum, the sweep rider will stay with you and the rest of the group will wait for you to catch up ahead. This is part of the fun of group riding: you know your “pack” will take care of you.
    Try to be consistent. It’s a lot easier to ride with people who are predictable. Hold your line, be smooth and steady with your speed and pay attention to your surroundings. Your fellow riders will thank you!
    Final Exam
    No, there isn’t actually a final exam, but I do want to leave you with this parting advice, and it’s the most important: ride your own ride.
    Ultimately, we are all responsible for ourselves and only ourselves. Even though you’re in a group of other riders, you alone are in control of your bike and are therefore on a solo ride. If the group is doing stuff that makes you uncomfortable, don’t do it. Ride your own pace, don’t run the red light even though the two riders ahead of you did, and if you need to take a break, signal to your group and pull over. And don’t attempt an unsafe pass — your group won’t leave you behind.
    Article credits: ridermagazine

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    Mah Pte Ltd: Exclusive Media Launch of Aprilia SR-GT

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    Chong Aik:  The all-new CARDO PACKTALK EDGE (Sound by JBL) Duo
     
    Experience greatness like never before with the all-new #CARDO PACKTALK EDGE (Sound by JBL) Duo - the most advanced communication system in the world! NOW AVAILABLE Powered by the 2nd generation of Cardo's Dynamic Mesh Communication, PACKTALK EDGE provides an unprecedented crystal clear sound and an easy, lightning-fast pairing for a group of up to 15 riders, at a range of up to 1.6km/1mi. Among its many improved features are upgraded Natural Voice engine, enhanced JBL Sound, and improved noise-cancelling microphone, for an exceptional on-the-road sound and communication experience. Fast Charging and over-the-air software updates complete the list of features and improve significantly the ease of use. Waterproof, PACKTALK EDGE comes in a slim modern design with no external antenna, a USB Type-C port, and a revolutionary and secure magnetic Air Mount. Universal fit, unrivaled performance, the leader of the Pack is better than ever!   Main Features: Waterproof: No matter what you throw at it, your waterproof PACKTALK EDGE will take the beating and keep you connected. Rain, shine, mud, dust, or snow. Air Mount: So simple. So secure. Just bring your PACKTALK EDGE near the magnetic mount and it will snap right on. Sound by JBL: New and powerful 40mm high-definition speakers engineered to perfection by JBL experts, with an improved music processor and three redesigned audio profiles. Natural Voice: Our improved Natural Voice Operation engine rids you from the need to ever press a button again. Just say "hey Cardo" and tell it what you want, your PACKTALK EDGE will do the rest. Dynamic Mesh Communication Gen 2: We took the world's best motorcycle intercom, and made it better. For up to 15 riders at a range of up to 1.6km/mi. Easy Grouping: Lightning fast, easy and simple. Effortless grouping like never before. Auto Healing: DMC intercom adapts to your ride, and not the other way around. Private Chat: For those moments you want to gossip with only one member of the group. Sound Quality: The best sounding intercom in the World. Motorcyclists chatter has never sounded so good.
    Specs: Compatibility: Universal / Universal connectivity / TFT connectivity Intercom: 2nd gen DMC intercom Auto-reconnect, HD Live Bluetooth Intercom Universal Bluetooth Intercom Group Size: up to 15 riders Rider to Rider Range: up to 1.6km / 1mi Operating Temperature: -20˚C to 55˚C / -4˚ F to 131 ˚ F FM Radio: Operating frequencies 76-108 MHz, RDS - Radio Data Systems 6 preset station memory Software Update: Over-the-air updates, USB cable updates Device Settings: Cardo Connect App Dimensions: Main Unit (Height: 46mm / Length: 84mm / Depth: 23mm / Weight: 47g Speakers: Diameter: 40mm / Depth: 10mm Connectivity: 2 channels for mobile phone and GPS / Bluetooth 5.2 User interface: Natural Voice Operation / Multilingual status announcements Audio: Sound by JBL / 40mm JBL speakers / JBL Audio profiles / Automatic Volume Control Talk time: 13 hours Charging Time: up to 2 hours Fast charging: 2 hours talk time after 20 min charge Standby Time: 10 days Certificates: CE IC/FCC SIG BT TELEC UKCA
      As Cardo’s SOLE AUTHORISED DISTRIBUTOR in Singapore, we provide: 3-Year Warranty (For Packtalk Edge) 2-Year Warranty 1-to-1 exchange (For parts deemed faulty not due to wear and tear) *With proof of purchase: Invoice Try the CARDO Packtalk Edge (Sound by JBL) with us, the SOLE AUTHORISED DISTRIBUTOR at: Helmets & Apparels Showroom 45 Desker Road, Singapore 209576 +65 6294 2532/1 9am-6pm | Mon-Fri 9am-5pm | Sat Powerstar Motor P/L 151 Jalan Besar, Singapore 208869 +65 6392 5803 10:50am-7:30pm | Mon-Sun   Join SingaporeBikes on Telegram for more of the latest news, special offers, reviews of motorcycles, and more!

     

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