Being a motorcyclist is often associated with being a rebel or a bandit. While there are motorcycle gangs that roam the open roads, you don't have to belong to one to enjoy the motorcycle lifestyle. Compare prices of a motorcycle that suits you and remember to buy protective gear. Once you learn to drive, you may want to join a club. Whether you're in a club or driving alone, always follow the rules of the road.
Part 1 of 3: Buying a Motorcycle
Step 1. Get the motorcycle that suits you best
Think about what you want to do with the motorcycle and how you want to handle it. If you are a new rider, you will need to consider the weight of the motorcycle, as well as how tall it will be. You should be able to put both feet on the floor when you stop.
- Motorcycles come in all shapes and sizes. When you buy one, think about how you want to handle it. Do you want something you can wander around or do you want something a little more extreme? If you want to go on a motorcycle ride, go for a traditional one. If you want some speed, consider a sports bike.
- Start searching the websites of various manufacturers to find the specifications of the motorcycles. Select a few that interest you and compare them to find one that suits your needs.
Step 2. Establish a budget
Motorcycles can range from less than $ 5,000 to $ 25,000. Before spending a great deal of money buying one, do some research on the prevailing rate of the motorcycle in question. You could find a cheaper alternative.
- Consider buying a used motorcycle if you are buying one for the first time. If you are learning to drive, you will run the risk of falling at some point. So if you buy a used motorcycle, you won't feel so bad if it gets a little dented. Once you learn to drive, you can change it for a more beautiful one.
- Keep in mind that you will have to pay some other fees for owning a motorcycle, in addition to the cost of the motorcycle. There are title and registration fees, sales tax, and, in some cases, a delivery fee. If you buy a used motorcycle, you may have to pay for certain maintenance if it needs work to be done.
Step 3. Buy protective gear
After you buy the motorcycle, you will have to invest in a helmet. While there are many other accessories available to handle, a helmet is essential.
- When shopping for a helmet, be sure to buy one that has a good fit. You want your helmet to be comfortable around the cheeks and jaw, as well as on the top and sides of the head. Be careful with used helmets as they may not offer much protection due to wear and tear.
- Other driving accessories are driving jackets, boots, and gloves. The more you can protect yourself while riding the motorcycle, the better off you will be. Buy jackets and gloves that have the armor sewn on. Armored equipment offers greater protection if you are in an accident.
Step 4. Remember to get a motorcycle license
Depending on the state you live in, the rules for obtaining a motorcycle license may vary. Some states will require a motorcycle safety course before issuing a license to prospective drivers. If you live in the states, check with the DMV (Department of Motor Vehicles) to find out the requirements in your state.
Part 2 of 3: Join a club
Step 1. Think about the type of club you want to join
There are motorcycle clubs and also driving clubs. Each club offers something different to its members.
- Driving clubs are for people who just want to drive. You will meet up with some other members, they will go for a walk and that will be it. Other commitments will seldom come up if you join a driving club.
- Motorcycle clubs are more social. They value forming bonds with peers in such a way that they create a kind of brotherhood. Motorcycle clubs often require a lifetime commitment to the club. They often request payment of dues, as well as attendance at events that the club sponsors.
Step 2. Find a club that interests you
You can find clubs for a wide variety of interests. There are clubs that are based on anything from the type of motorcycle you ride to what you do for a living. Check online to find information about the branches of a club that may work in your area.
Step 3. Apply for membership
Depending on the type of club you are interested in, you may have to apply for membership. Some driving clubs are free, while in others you may have to pay dues.
- If you want to join a driving club, all you have to do is go to the local branch and ask what you need to join. If you can't find a local branch, you can start your own. If you find enough members, you can make it a group certified by the American Motorcycle Association or AMA (American Motorcycle Association).
- It can be much more difficult to join a motorcycle club as some only recruit members by invitation. If you want to join an established motorcycle club, find out where the local branch is located and start hanging out there. Introduce yourself to some of the members and get to know them. If the members get along with you, they might ask you to join.
- Motorcycle clubs often get adverse publicity as they can sometimes resemble gangs. While there are several motorcycle clubs that go for the wrong side of the law, not all of them are bad. Before joining one, do your research and make sure you know what you're getting into.
Step 4. Take a group walk
A big part of what both clubs do is group driving. Group walks offer companionship and great views; however, there are some rules to follow.
- Make sure the group plans the trip before leaving. Discuss details like where you are going, how long you plan to drive, or where you will stop.
- Follow an established driving order, with an experienced driver up front. Less experienced drivers should be right behind the leader and veterans after. This way, experienced drivers will be able to keep an eye on new ones.
Part 3 of 3: Follow the Rules of the Road
Step 1. Be courteous to other motorcyclists and car drivers
Pay attention to your surroundings, be careful and stay out of any blind spots on the road. Avoid zigzagging through traffic or carrying someone on your shoulders.
- Car drivers keep an eye out for motorcyclists; however, do your best to make yourself visible on the road. For added safety, always assume that you are invisible to drivers.
- Always follow local traffic laws. Do not accelerate and pay attention at all times to the traffic in front of you.
Step 2. Always wear safety gear
You should never ride your motorcycle without wearing proper safety gear. Even if you go down a street, wear a helmet.
Step 3. Drive sober
Riding a motorcycle requires more skill than riding a car. Drinking alcohol before riding your motorcycle will hamper your ability to do so safely.
Don't be fooled into thinking that you can drive if you've only had a few drinks
Step 4. Be extra careful when driving with a passenger
If you have a motorcycle that allows you to carry a passenger, make sure you are qualified enough to do so. Give him a helmet and make sure he's comfortable when you wear it.