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Motorcycle FAQ - Motorcycle Frequently Asked Questions for New Riders

How do I choose my first motorcycle?
The first thing a new rider wants to do is get a motorcycle. We tell you how to choose it and give recommendations for good first bikes. Read our 2-part series.

What can you tell me about motorcycle clubs?
Many riders like to ride alone. Some prefer the company of other riders for protection and fellowship. Others like to belong to a club, either local or national. The choice is yours. Read more...

Should I go to a major motorcycle rally?
New riders are continually branching out and riding farther. Many prefer to go to a rally to see other riders and motorcycles and to visit vendors for pinstriping, extra accessories, and chrome. Read more...

How do I pack my motorcycle for a trip?
Depending on the size of a bike, packing for a trip is basically an exercise in living simply. You must take only what you'll need and then find a place to put it. A packing list is necessary. We have one. Read more...

What protective apparel do I need?
Motorcycles go fast and you ride out in the open. Protect your body and especially your head. Use a helmet. Read more...

What are best motorcycle movies?
There are a lot of biker videos out there. Many are about gangs but you, at least, get to see world famous actors in their younger days. Read more...

How do I meet other motorcyclists?
Maybe you can't find another rider to talk to. Why not visit our forum. We have many beginning riders there asking the same questions you are. Get answers and meet riders from all over the world. Click the Start Reading button when you get there. Take a look...

How can I talk to other motorcyclists?
Perhaps you'd like to interact in real time with other riders. Visit our chat room on Sunday, Monday and Thursday beginning at 9 p.m. ET. We get a mix of regulars from the forum and newcomers too. Get to know real riders and hear them discuss motorcycling and just about anything else too. This is a text chat. Just go to the forum and click the Chat tab at the top.

Can you give me the definition of a motorcycle term?
We have a motorcycle glossary of common terms that riders use. Get educated on these basics. Get a definition...

Can you tell me about the history of motorcycles?
There is a vast history of motorcycles that goes back more than 125 years. Harley-Davidson started selling motorcycles in 1903 and is still going strong. Read more...

How do I get experience?
Experience comes from practice, practice, practice. There is no other way. This assumes that you have taken an MSF course and perhaps also an experienced rider course. You ride with buddies and clubs, watch videos of street strategies, read books about the best ways to survive on the street and highways, and then continue riding. Ride as much as you can. Get on our Motorcycles or Harley-Davidson forums and share your experiences. Tell others what your problems are. Seek advice. Read problems that others have had. Be a daily contributor to the forums. Get to know other riders. Attend some of the forum sponsored rides. Meet the people you read about on the forum. Become a gray-haired rider by being a safe rider for many years. It's up to you.

How do I maintain my bike?
Some riders choose to learn how to take care of their own bike. Others do some maintenance and let the shop do the rest. Still others let the shop do everything. We have provided some maintenance tips in our Resources FAQ. New tips will be provided from time-to-time. The Motorcycles Newsletter will keep you apprised of updates. Read more...

How do I buy a motorcycle?
We provide some articles and other resources to assist you. The motorcycle magazines do a good job of testing most new motorcycle models. We give you an index to find these articles and certain online tests as well. We also have a User Reviews feature that allows our users to evaluate their own bikes so you can get their input. Read more...

How can I evaluate a motorcycle I'm interested in?
You can use our User Reviews feature. These reviews of motorcycles are submitted by our own Motorcycle Views site and forum users. You can also use our forums to seek advice on motorcycles and other motorcycle-related products. Read more...

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