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5 Steps to Winterize Your Motorcycle

We hope you had a great riding and holiday season – and we also hope you keep riding through the Winter. However, if you have to put your bike/ATV/UTV away for the cold weather, her are a few tips for winterize your motorcycle, ATV or UTV to protect it and make it easier to fire up in the Spring.

Step 1 – Managing Fuel

With today’s fuel, sometimes it’s not that good and fuel starts oxidizing and can start going bad in 7 days. We recommend a good ethanol treatment that treats and stabilizes the fuel. There are several good brands out there – but we recommend “Liquid Performanc” (link). You just follow the instructions, which typically says 1oz per 5 gallons of fuel (or cap in a full tank). A bottle can last you a long time.

KTM managing fuelAlso, many people think only carburetors only gum up. Fuel injectors can get plugged with bad fuel as well. With modern bikes the fuel injectors are designed to maximize performance and have special spray patterns and those nozzles can get clogged if not properly managed. We recommend run a little two stroke oil through the fuel (if you are not sure how to do this – call us). In spring – fire the bike up – get up to running temperature and see if it runs like when you parked it. If not a dirty injector can be the culprit.

Last – fill your gas tank to the very top before you park it for the season – and then drain that fuel in the spring (don’t use it) – and load with fresh fuel, with ethanol additive.

Step 2 – Battery Maintenance

Super B Lithium batteries SB12V5200P-BC
Super B Battery

Disconnect your battery from the bike and clean the outside. You should consider hooking the battery up to a battery tender. Check your battery, but generally we like to use at least a 1.5 amp or greater tender. Most are pretty good, we have “2.0 AMP Tender“ at the shop so come by or give us a call and we can ship one out to you. We have gotten away from the 0.75 amp tenders because of problems with not maintaining the battery to its proper specification. We also don’t typically recommend the smart tenders – they seem to be too smart for their own good. In the spring, check the voltage and for a standard battery it should be 12 volts plus and lithium batteries 13.2 volts plus. If your into high performance or cold weather riding, we have the “Super B” battery – which guarantees a five year life and does not suffer from many of the problems lithium batteries .

Step 3 – Rubber Parts

You should consider coating all the rubber/vinyl parts (and potentially metal components succeptible to rust – such your o-ring/x-ring chains, steel sprockets (if not coated), any nut/bolt that has coatings knocked off) with a good quality silicon spray (and WD 40 is not it). We recommend silicon spray. In the spring – be aware, the rubber parts might be slippery, so clean them up before riding.

Keep special attention to fork seals, wipers and air boots – they seem to be the main parts that dry out when you use cleaners on them. You can consider spraying those parts with silicon spray with almost every ride.

DO NOT SPRAY ON TIRE TREADS – Dangerous

Step 4 – Tires

Ride On Moto Tires for Motorcycles, ATVs and UTVsYou should over-inflate your tires (maybe an extra 10 psi for tubeless and up to 20 psi with tubes) – but be careful. If you have any concerns, don’t do it. You should treat the side walls (NOT THE TREAD) with silicon spray (see Rubber Part’s Blog). Never spray the treads.

If possible, get the wheels off the ground. For dirt bikes, we recommend a standard moto cross bike stand. For street bikes, if they are no equipped with center stand, you can use a Pitbull stand or some people work up hoist type systems. If you don’t have a stand – at least lay day a piece or rubber/carpet/card board to keep it off the concrete.

ATVs – you can overinflate by about 5 lbs.

DO NOT SPRAY ON TIRE TREADS – Dangerous

Step 5 – Storage for Bikes

Storing motorcycles with bike coverStoring options can include a variety of options. You can store your bike inside, in a conditioned area, that is best because it helps avoid excess moister and avoids extreme temperature changes – which hurts your bike by expansion/contraction of the various parts. If you cannot keep inside – at least get it under some type of cover. Try to avoid a barn at all cost due to dust, must and mold.

Bike covers are a good choice for a toking option – but the covers need to be of good quality (good ventilation) otherwise, they can trap moister inside and can cause rust and other issues.

If mice are an issue – you can try to put something around the bikes to deter mice/rats – as they can reek havoc on various parts. You can online for home remedies in this area.

When you are ready to ride again, don’t start the bike inside – take it outside, load with fresh fuel, wipe off the silicon from the rubber/vinyl parts, check battery and tire pressure (deflate to normal pressure) and let it idle for at least 20 minutes (with an occasional revving the engine) otherwise, moisture can collect in the systems and cause more problems.

We have a service department that can take care of all of your winterizing needs. Please give us a call if you would like to bring your bike in to be winterized. This will allow you to be ready to ride when spring arrives.

If you have any questions, always feel free to call us. Until next time…. Ride On, Ride On!

Winterizing Your Motorcycle – Storing Your Bike Part #5

Storing motorcycles with bike coverWe hope you had a great riding and holiday season – and we also hope you keep riding through the Winter. However, if you have to put your bike/ATV/UTV away for the cold weather, her are a few tips for winterizing it to protect it and make it easier to fire up in the Spring. This is the last of our Winterizing blog series and will focus on the sorting your motorcycle, ATV or UTV.

Storing options can include a variety of options. You can store your bike inside, in a conditioned area, that is best because it helps avoid excess moister and avoids extreme temperature changes – which hurts your bike by expansion/contraction of the various parts. If you cannot keep inside – at least get it under some type of cover. Try to avoid a barn at all cost due to dust, must and mold.

Bike covers are a good choice for a toking option – but the covers need to be of good quality (good ventilation) otherwise, they can trap moister inside and can cause rust and other issues.

If mice are an issue – you can try to put something around the bikes to deter mice/rats – as they can reek havoc on various parts. You can online for home remedies in this area.

When you are ready to ride again, don’t start the bike inside – take it outside, load with fresh fuel, wipe off the silicon from the rubber/vinyl parts, check battery and tire pressure (deflate to normal pressure) and let it idle for at least 20 minutes (with an occasional revving the engine) otherwise, moisture can collect in the systems and cause more problems.

We have a service department that can take care of all of your winterizing needs. Please give us a call if you would like to bring your bike in to be winterized. This will allow you to be ready to ride when spring arrives.

If you have any questions, always feel free to call us. Until next time…. Ride On, Ride On!

Winterizing Your Motorcycle – Tires Part #4

Ride On Moto Tires for Motorcycles, ATVs and UTVsWe hope you had a great riding and holiday season – and we also hope you keep riding through the Winter. However, if you have to put your bike/ATV/UTV away for the cold weather, her are a few tips for winterizing it to protect it and make it easier to fire up in the Spring. This is the fourth of our 5 part series and will focus on the tires on your motorcycle, ATV or UTV.

You should over-inflate your tires (maybe an extra 10 psi for tubeless and up to 20 psi with tubes) – but be careful. If you have any concerns, don’t do it. You should treat the side walls (NOT THE TREAD) with silicon spray (see Rubber Part’s Blog). Never spray the treads.

If possible, get the wheels off the ground. For dirt bikes, we recommend a standard moto cross bike stand. For street bikes, if they are no equipped with center stand, you can use a Pitbull stand or some people work up hoist type systems. If you don’t have a stand – at least lay day a piece or rubber/carpet/card board to keep it off the concrete.

ATVs – you can overinflate by about 5 lbs.

DO NOT SPRAY ON TIRE TREADS – Dangerous

We have a service department that can take care of all of your winterizing needs. Please give us a call if you would like to bring your bike in to be winterized. This will allow you to be ready to ride when spring arrives.

If you have any questions, always feel free to call us. Until next time…. Ride On, Ride On!

Winterizing Your Motorcycle – Rubber Parts Part #3

Winterizing rubber partsWe hope you had a great riding and holiday season – and we also hope you keep riding through the Winter. However, if you have to put your bike/ATV/UTV away for the cold weather, her are a few tips for winterizing it to protect it and make it easier to fire up in the Spring. This is the third of our 5 part series and will focus on Rubber Parts on your motorcycle.

You should consider coating all the rubber/vinyl parts (and potentially metal components succeptible to rust – such your o-ring/x-ring chains, steel sprockets (if not coated), any nut/bolt that has coatings knocked off) with a good quality silicon spray (and WD 40 is not it). We recommend silicon spray. In the spring – be aware, the rubber parts might be slippery, so clean them up before riding.

Keep special attention to fork seals, wipers and air boots – they seem to be the main parts that dry out when you use cleaners on them. You can consider spraying those parts with silicon spray with almost every ride.

DO NOT SPRAY ON TIRE TREADS – Dangerous

KTM 250 SX-F MX Motocross - 2017 Ride On MotoWe have a service department that can take care of all of your winterizing needs. Please give us a call if you would like to bring your bike in to be winterized. This will allow you to be ready to ride when spring arrives.

If you have any questions, always feel free to call us. Until next time…. Ride On, Ride On!

Winterizing Your Motorcycle – Battery Maintenance Part #2

We hope you had a great riding and holiday season – and we also hope you keep riding through the Winter. However, if you have to put your bike/ATV/UTV away for the cold weather, her are a few tips for winterizing it to protect it and make it easier to fire up in the Spring. This is the second of our 5 part series and will focus on battery maintenance.

Super B Lithium batteries SB12V5200P-BC
Super B Battery

Disconnect your battery from the bike and clean the outside. You should consider hooking the battery up to a battery tender. Check your battery, but generally we like to use at least a 1.5 amp or greater tender. Most are pretty good, we have “2.0 AMP Tender“ at the shop so come by or give us a call and we can ship one out to you. We have gotten away from the 0.75 amp tenders because of problems with not maintaining the battery to its proper specification. We also don’t typically recommend the smart tenders – they seem to be too smart for their own good. In the spring, check the voltage and for a standard battery it should be 12 volts plus and lithium batteries 13.2 volts plus. If your into high performance or cold weather riding, we have the “Super B” battery – which guarantees a five year life and does not suffer from many of the problems lithium batteries .

KTM 1290 Super Duke - 2016If you have any questions, always feel free to call us. Until next time…. Ride On, Ride On!

Winterizing Your Motorcycle – Managing Fuel Part #1

KTM 125 XC-W Enduro 2017 - RIDE ON MOTO

We hope you had a great riding and holiday season – and we also hope you keep riding through the Winter. However, if you have to put your bike/ATV/UTV away for the cold weather, her are a few tips for winterizing it to protect it and make it easier to fire up in the Spring. This is the first of our 5 part series and will focus on managing fuel.

With today’s fuel, sometimes it’s not that good and fuel starts oxidizing and can start going bad in 7 days. We recommend a good ethanol treatment that treats and stabilizes the fuel. There are several good brands out there – but we recommend “Liquid Performanc” (link). You just follow the instructions, which typically says 1oz per 5 gallons of fuel (or cap in a full tank). A bottle can last you a long time.

Also, many people think only carburetors only gum up. Fuel injectors can get plugged with bad fuel as well. With modern bikes the fuel injectors are designed to maximize performance and have special spray patterns and those nozzles can get clogged if not properly managed. We recommend run a little two stroke oil through the fuel (if you are not sure how to do this – call us). In spring – fire the bike up – get up to running temperature and see if it runs like when you parked it. If not a dirty injector can be the culprit.

KTM managing fuelLast – fill your gas tank to the very top before you park it for the season – and then drain that fuel in the spring (don’t use it) – and load with fresh fuel, with ethanol additive.

If you have any questions, always feel free to call us. Until next time…. Ride On, Ride On!


RIDE ON MOTO: ISDE MEDAL STORY – PART ONE

Hi,

Well, this is my 5th blog and since everybody is buying new bikes right now for next season, I’m going to save my blog on KTM jetting and KTM fuel injection for a later date. The street and adventure guys are winding down for the season although we were thinking about having an adventure ride the weekend of November 21st. A sales rep would lead everybody on a nice casual ride. It will be suitable for all rider ability levels. I’m also thinking about putting on a couple of riding schools over the winter for adventure and off-road riders including youth riders. Your feedback, if you’re interested, would be greatly appreciated. Email me at John@rideonmoto.com or call the shop at 540-722-7100.

So it’s the end of the season and we all have great stories to tell about our riding adventures whether it be street or dirt. So I thought I would share one of my most epic stories. It was the year I earned my ISDE medal. It was my final year of serious racing. We shall call that year 1999BK (before kids). That year, I decided to try to qualify for the ISDE and was going to qualify in, what they called, at the time, the “under 175cc” class. They didn’t have all these fancy 4-strokes back then. The other classes were 4-stroke, over 175cc and 500cc and over. I was going to ride a Honda CR125. It was a reliable bike and easy to work on. I knew I would need to replace at least a piston ring in the middle of the Six Days and I had the replacement time down to 18 minutes. I think with the right planning and practice I could have gotten it below 15 minutes. So the journey began.

The first qualifier was in Louisiana. Let’s just say it was a long trip. It was very humid with a lot of sandy soil. I had been riding up north although we had made a quick trip to race at Bike Week. We hit the Sumter and Alligator Enduros. I actually rode the bike horribly in those two events but let’s just say when I was younger I was the type that had to touch the hot stove twice to realize it would burn me. So back to the first qualifier. Day 1 was horrible. There used to be a company that made exhaust pipes and silencers called Dynoport. I think he does a lot with snowmobiles now. Anyway, he built a special silencer just for me that would pass for a spark arrestor but would not lose any power. Well, the way it was made it had this, let’s just say “interesting end cap”. Let’s also say that it wasn’t the “best design”. The concept was good until it meets a tree. So I rode the first half of day one in the sand with a 125 with no power. 125’s are not always rippers when you weigh 175 pounds. Back then, they were more suited for young 150 pound riders. I guess they still are, but I thought that I could be a hero. Anyhow, once I figured out the problem and repaired it, I then tried to override the bike the rest of the time and kept crashing about every 10 minutes so my day was shot. On top of that, I got a speeding ticket on the way back to the hotel. That evening I felt horrible.

The stress and the southern heat had taken its toll. The next day I tried to have a positive approach but within 20 minutes of riding, ate “kaka” at a metal cattle crossing. The pain was excruciating but I’m not a quitter. I picked myself up knowing I only had about 4 more hours of racing left to go. Can’t be that hard, right? Well apparently the crash had this sub-conscious effect on me and oh boy did I start holding on tight. By the last hour of the race my hands had blistered and busted open and my palms were raw and bleeding. The humid heat didn’t help and my hands were not yet in race shape (plenty of callouses) for the season. So at this point, I was literally crying and my gloves were soaked in blood. I realized my dreams of being an ISDE medalist were looking dismal and the little Honda 125 may have been a mistake. As much as I hummed the Beach Boys song “Little Honda”, I was going to have a frustrating result. Stay tuned “same bat channel and same bat page” for the next blog to see what happens next.

Ride On
John Ross

The Racing Season Is Almost Over – But Having An Adventure Bike Riding School At Farm

Well, I’m on my 4th blog for Ride On Moto and this one talks about racing season adventure riding. The racing season is almost over over with the exception of the Ironman GNCC being the last major race for the year and the Full Gas Sprint Enduro being the last race of the year in South Carolina. The GNCC will be a great race but I’m raced out for the year although we will go to the Full Gas to get one last blast of warm weather and hang out with our racing buddies one last time.

My son, Luke, finished out the season with an Open A championship in the East Coast Enduro Association series and finished on the podium in the Open A Class at Powerline Park GNCC in Ohio the other week. He was upset he didn’t ride his KTM 350 XC-F as he felt it was a 4 stroke kind of track. Between one of my sons breaking his leg and the other fighting for a championship I have been very busy – not to mention I have a day job.

So now with a break in the action we are going to start spending time developing the Adventure bike market and maybe do some adventure bike riding schools at my farm. These would be from a dirt bike perspective. It’s easy for dirt guys to ride on the street but difficult for street guys to ride in the dirt. So I will do some old school type teaching that involve some mini bikes and flat tracking. Then we will bring the big bikes out on the moto track.

So if you are interested in drop me an email at john@rideonmoto.com or call the shop at 540-722-7100. Also KTM is offering a free set of KLIM BADLANDS riding gear along with $1500 rebates on 1190 adventures as well as other street bikes. This is a limited time offer so take advantage while you can.

Also, it’s the end of the riding season for a lot of people and it is a great time to get your bikes worked on, such as fork and shock services. We use SKF seals on the European bikes and OEM seals on the Japanese bikes. We service all brands including WP suspension, KYB Showa and Olhins suspension.

The other thing that we have started doing is we have a fuel injection / injector cleaning service. We are also going to start crankshaft rebuilding service for motorcycles and ATV/UTV’s. Next blog will be about fuel injection and jetting.

Ride On

John Ross

LEARN HOW TO BE A GOOD RIDING BUDDY – DON’T BE THAT GUY….

Well, the last time I talked about the nightmare riding buddy. To not be “that guy” (aka – bad riding buddy), it only takes a few steps and a little time. The first thing that most people don’t do is have a pre-ride check list. This a simple thing to do. With everybody having the smartphones, just make a list in the notes section. I’m not sure about androids but I know my iPhone has this option and works awesome. Next is to have a small arsenal of tools. Certain specialty tools make some of the jobs easier. Companies like MotionPro (Call Ride on Moto for MotionPro tools) and Bikemaster make a ton of inexpensive helpful tools (you can call our shop 540-722-7100 or www.rideonmoto.com for more information). In the “checklist” you should identify the basics, such as air pressure, nuts, bolts and fasteners spokes and chain (if your bike is equipped with the last 2 items). Remember on chains, it’s better to run on the loose side than tight side, but best to go with manufacturers recommendations.

Where I see the lack of maintenance being the biggest issue is with racers. It usually is an expensive mistake. In fact, last Sunday I was at the ECEA Hare Scramble in south Jersey and a young man was telling me how he kept losing exhaust bolts. I ask how long it had be going on and he told for the last couple of months. I told him his rod or crank bearings were probably out. Of course he disagreed with me and I wasn’t going to argue with him as my son Luke was racing and he needed this race to lock up the Open A championship.

Side Note – Luke is only 15 and will get moved now to AA which is basically Pro-Am. I think he is faster now than I ever was except for a few shining moments in my life. This year we started on a KTM 350 XC-F (Link to KTM 350 XC-F) and ended the year on a modified 250 SX two stroke with a 300 cylinder on it. He definitely likes the KTM close ratio transmission better. Which, ironically, is what all the top racers in GNCC and NEPG run. Even though the stickers may say one thing, the transmissions are typically sx transmissions.

Congratulations to my son, Luke Ross, for winning his championship, because my other son broke his leg fighting for the 200B ECEA (East Coast Enduro Association) (Link to ECEA) championship. It’s amazing that Luke never started competitively racing until he was 10 years old. His first race was the Snowshoe youth GNCC on a Kawasaki KX65. He finished last or second to last in the event – I can’t remember. Three (3) years later he won the overall youth division at the John Penton GNCC . Remember, at whatever age, goals are obtainable if you put your mind to it.

Back to the Story – the moral of this story is to Finish 1st, you first must finish. The guy who argued with me about his rod bearing being out didn’t finish as his connecting rod came out of the bike on the first lap.

So remember – go over your bike, have a checklist, have the necessary tools and read the owner’s manual. The manual is full of a lot of great tips and make sure you find good guys to ride with.

Check out this video of Sunday’s event – the ECEA Open A Champion Luke Ross (produced by Jake Ross – man with the broken leg). Click Here to Watch Video

Pin it to Win it,

John Ross

THE RIDING BUDDY

Hi again,

So blog number 2 is about the infamous riding buddy. For those of you who have ridden before you know the person I am talking about. For those of you just beginning you will acquire these people over time. Some of them are awesome riding buddy’s and some of them are “why do I even go riding with this person”. The good riding buddy is always prepared and on time. They are usually flexible about the days schedule, they don’t care when and where you eat, there bike is in good rideable condition and they get all your twisted humor.

That brings us to the evil riding buddy. The evil riding buddy is always late and unprepared. His motorcycle or atv is always in disrepair. They call you late at night before the ride and ask you for a part that you would probably never have in a million years, “hey do you have 2nd gear for my bike”. When this happens to me I rhetorically answer, “Why yes, I have at least 6 in the kitchen drawer. I cook with them all the time”. They never have any money for gas or bring any with them. They never bring anything to eat or drink. They are typically the world’s worst mechanics, hence their bikes are in the worst shape and you end up working on their bikes all day ruining the ride. I actually have one of my very good friends who will only ride by himself for this exact reason except with certain people.

Although people like this can be humorous, it is no fun when you are trying to lay down some serious seat time. I don’t mind helping out a friend in need and obviously with my years of experience I can simplify issues quickly while riding. Sometimes if someone does something entertaining I don’t even mind fixing the bike for the entertainment factor. Once this kid came riding at my property and launched his bike into a pond and water logged it. Just seeing the sight of that which I will try to post the video sometime was worth the hour helping him get all the water out.

This bring us to blog # 3 which will be about basic riding prep.

Keep it on two wheels

John

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