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5 Staple Streetbike Mods

With so many options available, it's sometimes hard to find a good upgrade path for your streetbike. Well, dear reader, here's a quick and dirty list that will apply to most street riders:

1) Fender eliminator kits clean up the tail end of your motorcycle and have been a popular sportbike upgrade for some time now. These are great first additions to your sportbike as most OEM license plate fenders are awfully ugly. You'll be road ready to no time!

2) A new windscreen is a staple upgrade born on the race track. Puig and Zero Gravity dominate the sportbike windscreen market. For less than a $100, you can drastically change the look and feel of your sportbike with various windscreen shapes and colors. The full tuck friendly 'double height' or 'double bubble' profile sell best.

3) Frame sliders are a very popular upgrade as well but have taken some heat over the years (usually when people expect them to protect the bike in any crash scenario). Frame sliders work well in most tip-over incidents. They'll save your precious (and expensive) bodywork from taking a beating when your bike hits the pavement but don't expect them to do much if you experience a highside crash. Remember to round out your bike protection with bar ends and spools!


4) Get some levers! Now-a-days, aftermarket levers are adjustable and are designed to improve rider comfort as the stock levers are not adjustable or are not adjustable within a wide enough range. Pazzo levers took the US by storm when releasing their levers with multiple color options and in shortly and long variety. People flocked to them and a revolution was started. Lever combinations are near endless and will fit into most budgets at around $170 (street price) a set.

5) Nothing culminates the motorcycle riding experience quite like the ubiquitous slip-on exhaust. It's popularity is gained by the relatively affordable price (as compared to a full system exhaust) and, generally speaking, additional fuel management (via a Power Commander or similar device) won't be necessary. Rev happily through the urban jungle while setting off car alarms and frightening the occasional pet -- oh, my!
By Sir D


SW-Motech Allows For Use, On Top Of Abuse

There are a lot of options for bike protection these days. When it comes to big bolt-on parts like engine guards, skid plates, and racks, there are a few points to consider when making a decision on what items will be right for you. SW-Motech offers a variety of solutions for different touring and adventure motorcycles.

One thing that confuses some people is compatibility with other components on their motorcycle. Your skid plate needs to fit with your engine guards, and vice versa. All racks, whether they mount to the sides or the top on the back will need to match the accessories you plan to use with them, usually bags, hard cases, storage containers for fuel or water, and any other bolt-on items that require specific mounting points. I look for the most compatibility and scalability so I don't get stuck with hardware that is only compatible with one solution.

I started out all matchy-matchy with an SW Motech skid plate and engine guards, or 'crash bars' as they're also called. I didn't give the skid plate much thought at the time since it appeared to me that bolting a 3mm slab of aluminum under the bike would be hard to mess up. The skid plate left plenty of room for the crash bars, which was my main concern.

I fell in love the with the SW Motech crash bars for a few reasons. First, they were the narrowest profile I could find, which is a huge plus for splitting lanes and fitting the bike into tight spots. Second, they were extremely stout and offered an enormous amount of coverage from the headers all the way up past the engine next to the radiator. They fit the bike beautifully and came in a nice shiny black to match all the hardware on my motorcycle.

To this day, over 12,000 miles later, when the bike falls over or hits the ground in a crash, everything is protected. I can lay the bike on its side on the ground without worrying about any damage occurring, but the impact that the equipment can handle is pretty amazing. You're welcome to check out our Riding Videos to see some of the abuse we put our bikes through.

When on the ground, the bike rests on the rear passenger peg, the crash bar, and the hand guards (I went with the Barkbusters). Unfortunately- or fortunately for you, I've taken SW-Motech to task on the trail with more spills and crashes than I can count by now, one of which occurred fully loaded at a gas station on concrete. Onlookers seemed more affected by the sight of the bike on the ground than I was since I was prepared for this inevitability, and the bike was fine. I can attest that SW-Motech is making quality equipment that stands up to real world use and abuse, and I would highly recommend their hardware for use on adventure and touring motorcycles.

Here are some photos of the installation of the SW-Motech crash bars on the F800GS. The SW-Motech skid plate is also pictured below. (We had it powder coated black to match the bike).

By Aram


Scotts Performance Steering Stabilizer Kits



We use the Scotts Performance steering stabilizer kits on a number of our motorcycles. (A steering stabilizer is also referred to as a 'damper'). This kit fits seamlessly on our F800GS and it works great. I like the slight increase in bar height (about 1-inch, so most people won't even notice) because it makes road riding a little more comfortable and still works great off-road while standing up. The Scotts 'SUB-Mount' kit mounts under the handlebars so the damper is tucked out of the way while it does your dirty work. Overall, it serves to keep the bike moving forward without allowing the bars to flick back and forth violently, which helps to keep you in control.

I've ridden the F800GS through the sandy Mojave desert in California numerous times. I had very limited experience on a big dual sport bike at first, and the Scotts damper did its job helping me keep the bars straight and stabilizing the bike on every single ride. Our YouTube videos are testament to the the overall quality of the motorcycle, the parts we have outfitted it with, and the caveman tactics of the operator. :) I don't know what I would have done without the Scotts damper. Sand is a major challenge on a big dual sport motorcycle and there were numerous occasions where I needed all the help I could get.

One thing to consider about this F800GS Scotts SUB Mount kit will be whether you will actually be riding off-road or not. We simplified your options by labeling them as either On Road Only or a combination On/Off Road. We did this after speaking with Scotts Performance at length about what that actually means with regard to how the stabilizer operates. With their advice and consideration we reached the conclusion that if you will be doing any of your riding off-road you will want to opt for the On/Off Road option. That way, the rebound dampening of the On Road version will not inhibit the motorcycle's handling off-road.

We ride with aggresive lean angles on-road and explore a wide variety of terrain off-road. The On/Off Road damper setup for the F800GS Scotts SUB Mount kit has allowed us improved performance and handling across the board. We would highly recommend this kit to someone looking to stabilize the handling on any dual sport or off-road motorcycle.

Our sportbike experience with the Scotts damper also demonstrates that Scotts Performance is making a top-notch product that is useful in any discipline of motorcycle riding. We've had great success over the years with the Scotts damper at track days and canyon riding on various sportbikes.

Product info, pricing and availability for the Scotts Steering Stabilizer SUB Mount Kit for the F800GS

View all Scotts Performance products at SoloMotoParts.com
By Aram


Highs and Lows in Death Valley, DV DAZE 2013

We had an epic day of riding through the beautiful California desert into Nevada via Death Valley. The Mesquite Dunes were very entertaining, to say the least. It had been raining for days and the sun came out nice and bright the day of the ride. Perfect weather. Perfect dirt and sand. Rider cameos by Notmybikemodelname, Razr, Traveltoad, Scorpion and others (feel free to comment). The video ends with me (Aram) eating dirt in one of the worst crashes I've been in to date: loss of consciousness, broken clavicle, torn ligaments requiring surgery, it's been a major bummer for a guy that's been riding consistently every week for months now, but I'm sure I'll come back slower and with more excuses than ever before!

By Sir D


Rekluse Core EXP Install & Review [Video]

Rekluse Clutch rEvolution

I love my bikes. I'm not ashamed to say it. Each one has its charms and its woes. To increase the degree to which I experience pleasure riding each of these motorcycles, I add aftermarket parts that accentuate their intended uses. One such part for my Husqvarna TE310R is the renowned Rekluse Core EXP Auto-Clutch. As far as the Core EXP goes, we only sell the 3.0 now, so don't worry about ordering the wrong one.

I have literally been looked down upon by riders with Rekluse clutches on the trail above me as I burned my clutch and spun my back tire struggling to keep forward momentum going up a gnarly single track trail. Obviously, I'm a little late to the party as far as auto-clutches go. As off-road trails become tighter, rockier, steeper and more difficult, keeping the bike from stalling becomes a critical issue. Enter the Rekluse Core EXP Auto-Clutch. The purpose of an auto-clutch is to eliminate the use of the clutch lever by having the pressure plate in the clutch actuate the clutch automatically using centrifugal force. The beauty of the EXP and Core EXP is that you can still use the clutch lever whenever you like! It is absolutely the best of both worlds. Rekluse motorcycle clutches can be found on pro riders' bikes in just about every discipline these days, and for good reason!

Rekluse provides excellent paper instructions in the box with all of their kits. We have also added detailed installation and informational videos to our website provided by Rekluse HERE. I found the videos to be very helpful during the install since my eyes often dart through written directions haphazardly. I am a novice mechanic at best so, I was a little worried about tackling this project. Nonetheless, I forged ahead taking pictures and video to document my folly. See the following video for my installation of the clutch, some riding footage and my review of the Core EXP:



Rekluse Core EXP Auto Clutch Review

The Rekluse Core EXP simply eliminates the necessity to use the clutch lever in almost every situation. If we need to feather the clutch lever for very aggressive shifting, either up or down, we're able to use the clutch in the exact same way we would normally. The feel is identical. The investment in the Core EXP really pays off when we get into tight, gnarly rock climbs that we would normally stall out on. We're able keep the bike in a higher gear without stalling and simply blip the throttle to raise the front tire over abrupt ledges or obstacles. This upgrade on the bike is classified as cheating to a lot of people, and that's fine by me. Most riders will find that this clutch upgrade substitutes convenience for skill and provides a huge advantage for the average rider to make a leap to the head of the class in advanced clutch technique.

Navigating the bike out of precarious situations typically causes people anxiety. The Rekluse Core EXP not only improves a rider's chances of conquering terrain in the first place, but it also aids the rider in exiting situations that are a little over their head. I was able to turn the bike around in very tight quarters by planting a foot on the ground, blipping the throttle, and pulling the bars around the side of my body my foot was planted on. This may be a simple proposition for a more skilled rider, but I was amazed with how easily this inseam-challenged rider was able to pull it off. Variations on the same technique while standing next to the bike also proved useful to get going in the opposite direction without shimmying back and forth a million times.

For the guys and gals riding motocross, the benefits will be apparent as well. You're going to want to stay in a higher gear coming into corners and let the reliable slip of the Core EXP pull you through. Starts are easier as well since you will likely begin in second gear while holding the rear brake and simply launch the bike with a handful of throttle. Grab the clutch lever to slam into third on your way out and your starts are faster the first day you install the Core EXP.

So, what's the difference between the z-Start Pro and the EXP series? The two clutches function very much the same but use different technology. The EXP series (standard EXP and Core EXP) use a giant friction disk that holds wedges instead of a steel ball assembly like z-Start? Pro. The z-Start Pro has a varying lever feel that can feel very light or disconnected until you give the motor some RPM, then it comes back to stock feel. The EXP series will be much closer to stock with some differences still existing between the EXP and Core EXP. The Core EXP is the closest you can get to stock clutch lever action with an auto-clutch. Shop our website http://www.SoloMotoParts.com/Rekluse for the best price on Rekluse clutch products.

In summary, the z-Start Pro uses ball bearings while the EXP products use the "EXP", which is a giant friction disc that Rekluse invented. The EXP auto clutch is great but, if you want to closest thing to stock clutch feel AND all the benefits of an automatic clutch, the Core EXP is the way to go. I certainly love it, and I see why everyone I ride with uses them as well.

Thanks for reading! Let us know what you think!



By Aram


El Paso Mtn Off-Road Ride on Husqvarna TE310



Epic day out in Mojave on the Husky TE310. This was the first ride with the Rekluse Core EXP Auto-Clutch in the bike, and WOW! What a difference. We'll have a full write-up on the clutch soon! Make sure to check out our YouTube page for tons of motorcycle riding and product videos!
By Aram


Video: Klim Warranty & Repair

In July of 2012 I had the opportunity to ride over 4,000 miles to Idaho and back on my F800GS. Upon arriving at Klim headquarters in Rigby, Idaho, I met with Brand Manager, Jayson Wickencamp, for a tour of their facility. Jayson was kind enough to explain Klim's warranty process in the video I shot just outside of their inspection and repair area.


We carry the complete line of Klim Technical Apparel and Gear at SoloMotoParts.com. We've ridden thousands of miles through deserts, mountains and highways in their products and we can attest to their durability, comfort and protective properties as one of the best options on the market today.

Here is Klim's complete warranty (at the time of this post) for your convenience. Please feel to contact us with any questions. We will always be happy to assist you with any issues you have with anything you buy from us.

KLIM WARRANTY
We warrant *every product we make to be free of manufacturer defects for the **lifetime of the product. Additionally, all KLIM GORE-TEX® products are GUARANTEED TO KEEP YOU DRY® for the **lifetime of the product. If these products fail due to a manufacturing or material defect, we will repair the product without charge, or replace it at our discretion. This warranty is not transferable. Product must be registered with KLIM (at www.KLIM.com) to receive warranty coverage. 
* KLIM BOOTS are warranted against defects in materials and workmanship for one [1] year from the date of purchase. Aggressive running boards will accelerate the wear and tear on the soles of the boots. This is considered normal wear and tear. General warranty terms apply. 
* The KLIM F4 HELMET is warranted against defects in materials and workmanship for five [5] years from the date of purchase. General warranty terms apply.
* KLIM GOGGLES are warranted against defects in materials and workmanship for one [1] year from the date of purchase. Scratches are not covered under this warranty. General warranty terms apply. 
** The lifetime of a product unfortunately does not mean your lifetime. The intensity under which the product is used determines this factor. Rips, tears, cuts, punctures, burns, accidents, improper care, negligence, normal wear-and-tear, modifications, alterations or use for a purpose other than which the product designed will void the lifetime warranty of even if the warranty issue is not related to these damages. 
Warranty Freight Costs 
1. Please be sure to ship the package with a carrier that can provide tracking and insurance. Freight costs to transfer warranty claims to KLIM for evaluation are the responsibility of the party making the claim. KLIM assumes no responsibility for products during shipment from the party to our Warranty Department. Shipping charges are not refundable.
2. KLIM will pay return freight costs for repair or replacement items that have been approved for coverage under the warranty policy or the return of uncovered items. 
By Aram


Solo Moto's 2011 Husqvarna TE310

We have a new addition to the stable, a 2011 Husqvarna TE310. This is a fuel injected, street legal dirt bike that is one of the lightest, most nimble motorcycles in its class. I say 'street legal dirt bike' because you really aren't going to want to do any touring on this thing. Short paved routes in between trails is all that plate is for. A KLR650 is like a Goldwing compared to the TE. This is an off-road machine with a license plate, which comes in very handy here in California where off-highway vehicles and OHV riding areas are experiencing more and more restrictions.

The TE310 is exactly what I was looking for: light, nimble, and plenty of low-to-mid power compared to a 250. Husqvarna developed the 310 in 2011 off of the 250cc platform rather than downsizing the 450 as they'd done before. This lightened up the bike a little which is always a good thing. The extra torque you get with the 310 over a 250 also allows you to be a little lazier with your gear selection since there's plenty of power to pull you through. I've never owned a 250cc four-stroke for that very reason. I had previously opted for the 450cc motocross platform for my off-road riding until now. I'm a medium sized rider at 5'8", 162lbs, so a 450 had the tendency to throw me around if I wasn't careful.

The Rowher Flats Breakfast Club was in full effect in the weeks after I bought the 310 so I picked a day and raced out to Canyon Country at the crack of dawn. I met up with the usual suspects and we took off towards the hills into the best single track the area had to offer. I was having fun as soon as the tires hit the trail! The trails were tight, and at times quite steep with difficult step-ups hiding around blind 180-degree turns. I hadn't ridden like this in years! The TE was amazing, of course, but so were the guys I was riding with so the pace for the day was perfect. 


We followed the tight switchbacks all the way up and rested in the shade under the low hanging tree branches at the top of the hill. It felt more like a mountain. After a brief intermission we proceeded to ride down the other side of the range to rest once again in the shade under the trees at the bottom. I was starting to see a pattern by this point. There was a nice cool running stream in the bush nearby so I washed my face and talked with the fellas before mounting up and heading back up the way we came. After a brisk ride back to the staging area I called it a day. I'll be back for sure.




 



So far, the TE310 fits the bill for what I wanted. I'll post up with some of the upgrades I've been making at a later date...
By Aram


[Video] Chuckwalla Track Day

Tyler and Daniel having a blast at Chuckwalla on their R6's.
By Sir D


Autoclub Speedway Fun with Daniel

Autoclub Speedway Fun with Daniel 10/21/2012
By Sir D