Sunday, July 31, 2011

Tips and Tricks for Beginner Riders

Best Beginner Motorcycles is a blog that caters to beginner riders and those who are interested in learning how to ride.  This is a great source for those looking for motorcycle reviews, gear reviews or motorcycle guides.  The blog features a forum where you can talk with other riders about motorcycle laws, motorcycle destinations and you can post pictures and videos to share with others.  Here are a few links that may be helpful for the first time rider.

That is a question that I remember asking about 4 years ago after I bought my first motorcycle, a 2002 Suzuki GS500. At the time I had a 1989 Chevy Suburban as my secondary vehicle, but I rarely took it out because of the stress of driving such a large (and gas hungry) car. Eventually the suburban broke down and I sold it thus starting my foray into living without a four wheeled cage.

Motorcyclists often have to communicate with other people on the road much more often than people who drive cars. Whether it is warning other riders of potential hazards coming up or telling a car that is getting too close to you to back off. These are the basic hand signals every rider should know.

1. You'll Learn Faster Than a 600cc. Riding a motorcycle is hard for most people. Sure, put someone on a motorcycle for a few months or a year and it will eventually become second nature. Until you build the muscle memory that you need to properly operate a bike, you need to stack as much in your favor as you can. One of the easiest ways to do that is by choosing a 250 as a first motorcycle.

There are a few things that it will take you a few months to learn once you finally get your motorcycle and you start riding regularly. If you are lucky you will have a riding mentor with some experience help guide you and tell you some of these tips, but if you don’t then feel free to study this guide. 

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

CycleTrader.com Reaches 5,000 Motorcycle Riders on Facebook

We've reached a major milestone with our social community! Over 5,000 people 'Like' CycleTrader.com on Facebook. Thank you to all of our dedicated fans for sharing posts, commenting on statuses and inviting friends to our fan page. Keep spreading the word!

If you haven't already, please become a Facebook fan to hear regular updates, learn of upcoming motorcycle rallies, and connect with thousands of riders across the country.

But wait, there's more...

Follow us on Twitter and see what nearly 2,400 people have discovered. Read industry news, view featured videos and learn about great riding destinations! 

Friday, July 22, 2011

Employee Spotlight: Ryan Whitman Part II


By: Sean Dunn
Marketing Intern, CycleTrader.com



Ryan Whitman is the focus of our first employee spotlight post. He works in California as a web solutions consultant for CycleTrader.com. During his free time Ryan enjoys racing in the amateur circuit. In this interview he talks about his amateur road racing experience.


SD:  I would say that is a very good reason to stick to the street.  What kind of training or practice goes into preparing for races?
RW:    Before a race there is always practice session before you go out racing just to shake down the bike, make sure the bike is set up properly and to get your mind used to going at those speeds.  Very rarely does anyone just show up to the race track and line up on the starting grid.

SD:  You said that you have been racing since 2008.  How many different race tracks have you competed in throughout your amateur career?
RW:  I’d probably say 5 or 6 different tracks in the southern California area.

SD:  Which track would you say is your favorite?
Pictured Above:  Ryan Whitman
RW:  I’ve got two favorites.  Buttonwillow Raceway up in Buttonwillow, California has been one of my long time favorites.  It has a good combination of technical and high speed corners.  And there’s a new race track out east of Palm Springs called Chuckwalla Valley Raceway.  It’s a brand new race track with prefect pavement and a great mix of corners, high speed and low speed, and change of elevation.  As of right now Chuckwalla is my favorite track.

SD:  Do you have any upcoming races?
RW:  There’s a group of us driving up to Colorado at the end of July to go to High Plains Raceway.  I’ve never been to that race track before so it’s going to be a great experience and a little bit challenging to go to a race track that I’ve never seen, learn the track and go out and race on Sunday.  

SG:  Now that you have been through the whole process and you are now a seasoned racer, do you have any advice for someone who wants to get into amateur racing?
RW:  First thing I would say is save your money because racing is expensive.  If you think you have enough money save some more because you’re going to need it.  Tires are really expensive.  But most importantly just go out and have fun.  If you’re going out to race to be number one and win the money that’s quickly going to fade.  If you’re out there because you love it and you enjoy the competition, you enjoy the camaraderie, you enjoy hanging out with the guys you’ll have more fun.  That’s what keeps me doing it.  I don’t do it to win or to be the next Valentino Rossi.  I’m out there because I enjoy the race track, hanging out with my friends and the competition of racing.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Cyclechex.com Teams with Cycletrader.com to Provide Motorcycle History Reports


July 20, 2011 – New York, NY – For a limited time, Cyclechex.com, an online provider of motorcycle history reports, will be the exclusive provider of motorcycle history reports on CycleTrader.com. As the dominant online source for motorcycle buyers, private sellers, and retail dealers, CycleTrader.com has more than 150,000 vehicles for sale.

The Cyclechex.com Motorcycle History Report instantly produces an array of valuable information about a specific motorcycle, including whether the vehicle has been wrecked, has a salvage title, has ever been reported stolen, and much more. By simply entering the 17-digit Vehicle Identification Number (VIN), and regardless of the country of origin, Cyclechex.com instantaneously searches its huge database of information for details about the particular motorcycle. Cyclechex.com provides interested parties all the information necessary to be fully informed before making a decision about buying or selling the vehicle.

Cyclechex.com customers can also purchase history reports for automobiles, sport utility vehicles, pickup trucks, heavy trucks, recreational vehicles and trailers through its parent company, Specialty Reports Inc.

The price to consumers is $24.95 per report or $49.95 for three reports. Special discount pricing is available for dealers.

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Friday, July 15, 2011

Tips on Purchasing a Used Motorcycle: Cindi Servante


Cindi Servante
Cindi Servante is a motorcycle rider, blogger and enthusiast.  She is the founder and creator of Style Saver Scarves, designed to save the dreaded helmet hair.  You can find her blog at motoette.wordpress.com.  We welcome Cindi as our featured guest blogger!


Tips on Purchasing a Used Motorcycle

Copyright © 2011 Cindi Servante
In my limited career in the motorcycling world I have bought four bikes, two new, and two used.  I have to say, buying a used motorcycle from a private seller is a very vulnerable experience and would have appreciated any valuable information to make my purchase enjoyable and rewarding.  After all, purchasing a motorcycle should be as exciting an experience as riding one!  So, I am here to help you out and offer all my gathered information to make your purchase an easy one.

When buying new, there is standard of trust from a dealership and the most important hurdle to jump is to get the price down a few hundred dollars, acquire a good factory warranty and a bike that suits you and your riding needs.  Not so when purchasing a used bike from a private seller. We, as consumers put ourselves at a great financial risk doing cash deals in a total strangers’ driveway for a piece of expensive machinery we know nothing about!  So, why is this risky paradox so popular?  First, you can save a lot of money buying from a private seller as well as finding “rare” and “vintage” bikes that you can’t always purchase from a licensed dealer.  To obtain the ultimate deal by out beating the guy that was one phone call shy of getting the same awesome deal.  The thrill of the hunt, to many consumers, is what’s so appealing about buying used.  So before you put on your camouflage outerwear and head for the range, here is a simple list of things to look out for that I found helpful to accomplish a smart and successful transaction with a perfect stranger.

Copyright © 2011 Cindi Servante
1. Don’t go to look at the bike alone, even when purchasing the bike.
2. Thoroughly look the bike over (a whole other article to write!) ask the seller as many questions as you can, make a list before viewing the bike.
3. Check the VIN (Vehicle Identification Number). Make sure the VIN matches on the bike as well as on the title.
4. Check with DMV or Police to verify that the bike has not been stolen and registered to the same person you are dealing with.
5. Make sure there are no liens on the bike, if there were, on the front of the title there would be “released” signatures. Don’t buy this bike!
6. A bike with invalid odometer readings will state on the front of the title 999,999.  Also, look for “salvage” or “total loss” on the front of the title.
7. Make sure to write up a bill of sale, with seller/buyer information, and bike information (miles, VIN, model, price) both parties sign and date
8. Make sure the seller signs the back of the title.
9. Beware of “as is” disclosures, this means that once purchased, the seller is released from responsibility if anything goes wrong with the bike.  You have no recourse.
10. Don’t be surprised if the seller won’t let you test ride the bike for liability reasons.  You should not ride the bike until having properly registered and insured the bike in your name, meaning, trailer it home!
11. After you get the bike home, make arrangements with a professional mechanic for a full tune up, just to make sure it’s in the best working condition possible.  Safety first!
12. Don’t lie on the sale price of the bike when it comes to paying the sales tax, it’s fraud and it can come back to bite you in the rear, if the bike is ever stolen or wrecked, you will end up with the bill. In this case, it pays to be honest.
13. And finally, take it easy and get to know your new/used bike for the first few rides, it’s all about respect.

Congratulations and enjoy your new ride!

Cindi

Footnote: The pictures shown was my 2006 Kawasaki Ninja 650R which I had a very pleasant experience purchasing.  I had this bike for 2 years and loved it, with no problems what-so-ever; it was a sad day when I sold it!  And my current 2004 Honda VFR, another fabulous find that I bought at the beginning of this year and still enjoy to this day with no issues.  I bought my VFR using CycleTrader.com.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Employee Spotlight: Ryan Whitman

By: Sean Dunn
Marketing Intern, CycleTrader.com


Ryan Whitman is the focus of our first employee spotlight post. He works in California as a web solutions consultant for CycleTrader.com. During his free time Ryan enjoys racing in the amateur circuit. In this interview he talks about his amateur road racing experience.

Sean Dunn:  When did you start racing motorcycles?
Ryan Whitman:  I got a pretty late start.  I didn’t get my first motorcycle until 2004 so I was in my mid 20’s.  I got my bike in April and almost immediately started going to the race track.  I did some street riding and some canyon riding, then had a friend say you should come out and try the race track.  After I went to the race track for the first time, I never rode on the street after that.

SD:  Do you remember your first bike?
Pictured Above: Ryan Whitman


RW:  It was a 2004 Honda CBR600RR.

SD:  After you began riding on the race track how long did it take until you were able to compete?
RW:  I spent about three years learning how to ride at the race track and building my skills then started racing in 2008.  As far as training I took the motorcycle safety course just to learn the controls.  There are a number of racing schools out there that you can go to that will teach you things like body position, cornering, apexing, throttle control and all those sorts of things.

SD:  Would you say it’s a long process to get into the amateur racing circuit?
RW:  I wouldn’t say it’s a long process, but when you have never rode a motorcycle before you can’t just hop out there and go racing.  You definitely need to build your skill level before you go out and start riding in competition.

SD:  So it really depends on how dedicated the rider is on getting out there and working on their skills.  After you built up your skill level and began competing, did you see early success or did that take time?
RW:  I had some pretty good success.  The reason I didn’t go racing immediately is because I wanted to build my skill.  So I went out and I was able to finish in 4th place in my very first amateur race.  My second amateur race I finished 3rd and in my third amateur race I finished in 4th place again.  I was able to accumulate enough points to move into the expert class and since moving into the expert class I’ve never finished outside of the top ten.

SD:  I would say you had great early success.  Do you get into any other type of racing, such as dirt racing?
RW:  No, I don’t ride a ‘hurt’ bike because all my friends that ride ‘hurt’ bikes end up coming home hurt.  I try and stick to the street and stay as close to the ground as possible so when you fall down you tend not to get hurt as bad.  At least that’s my philosophy.

Part II of this interview will be posted next week.