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Safety Tips:


Because of the standard hazards that come with winter, motorcycles have been absent from the roads for many months.  Drivers will be less likely to notice your presence and can therefore be less prepared to watch out for you.  Because of this fact, it is important that motorcyclists make their presence known.  Make sure those near you can see where you are and what you are doing.  Honking the horn and using turn signals are some ways to make it obvious you are around.  If your area allows straight pipes and you've been thinking about getting them, you just found your excuse. The distinctive sound is rarely overlooked by anyone, making it a good safety investment. The new fad of string lights and spots of colour lights on bikes are an excellent way to be more visible.  Wear bright colours or tie a bright piece of fabric  on your radio antenna if you have one.  Get a brighter helmet.  Do whatever you can to ensure that the parts of you that drivers see are bright and noticeable.  We offer many items that can help you be seen!


When everything has been inspected and it is safe to go riding, there are still other dangers to look out for.  You may encounter debris on the road like car parts from crashes, potholes, gravel, sand and salt accumulation on roadsides, trash and so on.  Until the street sweepers do their jobs this spring, motorcyclists need to stay on alert for these hazards.  Potholes, gravel, sand and salt are some of the worst culprits in areas with harsh winters. We know we have had a doozy of a winter this year! Consider a first run in your car through your favorite routes so you'll be aware of the road debris ahead of time.

Just a few minutes of preparation can save your life!  Be prepared and you will enjoy the best ride of the year...the first ride of spring!


What Do You Wear?
When travelling outside the USA, it's rare to see a motorcycle rider wearing anything but full gear: helmet, jacket, pants, gloves and boots. When travelling inside the USA, at least in some states, it's rare to see a motorcycle rider even wearing a helmet, let alone any protective gear. It's not uncommon to see a helmetless rider riding down the road wearing only shorts, a T-shirt, and flip-flops on a hot summer day. Interestingly, it is those who have survived a motorcycle crash who tend to become the biggest proponents of proper protective gear. Also, thank goodness, Canadians seem to have the sense to dress accordingly!

Here at Bart’s Motorcycle Shop we advocate the best protection possible ~ especially for new riders!

We have all kinds of gear for all rider types...
cruisers, sport bikes and MX.
Let one of our knowledgeable staff help fit you out for a safe riding

Full Gear vs Fool's Gear



Are you nervous riding in high winds? Want to know what to expect if you haven't done it before?

 We’ve been told countless stories about riding in the wind and how challenging it is... the high winds are really unsettling - gusting in the 30 kph range, it can feel like you are in a perpetual lean of 10-15 degrees just to keep going straight!

 This kind of riding can be scary and even dangerous if you aren't sure of how to deal with the unexpected gusts. Riding on highways around tractor trailers in windy conditions can make it even worse. You go from a full crosswind to no crosswind at all, and back to full crosswind as you pass the tractor trailer. You need to prepare for this, to be ready to adjust your lean angle before you begin the pass.

 The harder and more stiffly you grip the handlebars, the scarier and less in control you're going to be. Don't try to correct every little deviation - literally just go with the flow, let the bike do what it's going to do, and gently guide it in the direction you want. Prepare for sudden loss of wind when you go past a tractor trailer - and the sudden reappearance once it returns. The more experience you get doing it, the easier it will become.

That said, if it starts feeling unsafe, slow down - and if that doesn't help, just pull over.

 By gripping too tightly you're only fighting it and wearing yourself down. Also, while relaxing your grip, drop your elbows closer to your body.

 That's why you get  so exhausted by the time you stop. Tight grip on the bars =  white knuckles, tense shoulders and mind.   RELAX  your grip. (Similar when riding on gravel roads/grated bridge surfaces.)  The gyroscopic effect of the wheels spinning will keep you upright and headed in the direction you have the bike pointed (even though it may wander a little bit) ... albeit you are riding on a slant.

 Anyplace with lots of open flat ground is susceptible to windy conditions.

 Relax your grip on the handlebars!

 Taller windshields will be affected more by high, gusting winds than shorter ones.

Remember to use COUNTER STEERING. Practice it. If you're not familiar with it, study up on it. You'll be glad you did.


Spring is just around the corner and you're ready to switch from your car to your motorcycle.  If your bike sat idley in storage these past couple of months, it may not be road ready just yet.  If you winterized your ride with the basics such as charging your battery, adding fuel stabilizer, polishing your chrome or keeping your muffler rodent free, you may not need much prepping before that first ride.  If you missed some maintenance tasks, however, now is the perfect time to catch up your to-do list.

Inspect Your Bike
Before you ride be sure to perform a thorough bike inspection to make sure that all your motorcycle parts are functioning properly.  Some basic routine items to check include tire pressure and wear, battery and terminals, fluid leaks, engine, lights, fuel levels, oil and filter.  If you are not mechanically inclined, we will be happy to give your ride a complete once over.

Spring Cleaning
Before you ride, make sure to give your bike and gear a good cleaning.  For your bike, use a motorcycle specific pre-wash cleanser to loosen dirt and bug stains.  Apply WD-40 to stains that are hard to remove.  Polish the paint and chrome with a soft terry or micro-fiber cloth.  Wax you bike for a protective finish.  To protect your gear and accessories and help them last longer, use leather treatment on your saddlebags and leather apparel.  Wash out the inside of your helmet and wipe down your helmet's visor with an anti-fog spray.  We carry many products to help you with these process's.

Tune Ups
If you haven't driven your idle bike in awile, it may be a good idea to test drive it around the block in your neighbourhood or in an empty parking lot.  That way you can check to see if further maintenance is required.  You can also become re-acclimated to driving your bike.  If you've been away from your motorcycle and are getting back to riding after a longer hiatus, you may consider a riding course to refresh your driving skills and update your knowledge of traffic laws.  Feel free to stop by for some information on appropriate certified courses and helpful tips.

Get The Proper Gear
For your comfort and safety, stock up on any gear you may need.  A good helmet will protect you from head injuries.  A motorcycle jacket will keep you warm as winter thaws to spring, not to mention the protective aspect of being covered correctly.  Sunglasses or goggles will protect your eyes.  Riding pants, gloves, boots, chaps and vests are other items you may need. We have everything you need to ride comfortably and safely.


No Gear vs Full Gear