Category: Motorbike Life (page 1 of 2)

BigPantha Helmet Lock Cable Review

The good folks at BigPantha sent me their BigPantha Helmet Lock Cable to see what I thought of it. Two things that always stay on the Red Rover is a helmet lock and a bungee cargo net. I have always locked my helmet with a cable, but it has normally been with a big bike lock and cable. The problem with that arrangement is that it is always in the way when packing bags and it is so long that my helmet can fall off with wind, knocks, etc. The Big Pantha Helmet Lock Cable seemed like a reasonable solution and it has proven to be. I’ve had it for a couple of months now, so it is time for a Battlefield Biker review.

BigPantha Helmet Lock Cable Review

I like to review goods like this on their general appearance and performance, but also based on the claims of the seller, so I grabbed the summary of the key facts and features from Amazon.

BigPantha Helmet Lock Cable Review – Features

Battlefield Biker Review

– Sleek & Attractive Black Helmet Lock It’s black and small, so I’ll agree it is “sleek.”
– Lightweight (5oz) & compact (fit’s in your pocket or a small bag) It is very lightweight and compact. It is virtually unnoticeable when not in use which serves for being out of the way and being concealable.
– Secret PIN code – 1,000 combinations Easy to set a new PIN and it is not too fiddly even for old fat fingers (BB)
– Simple to lock-it and unlock The D-Ring locking mechanism is very simple and easy to use.
– D-Lock is Rubberized to prevent scratching It is rubberized and not scratchy around the visor lid.
– Cable is self coiling for easy use & storage This is the part I like the most. When not is active use, it coils up to a small portion of its extended use and it is out of the way of bags.
– 1.8M long to attach single or dual helmets to bike (plus a jacket if you want) It is freakishly long when it needs to be, so can snake around bags and boxes to reach without having to remove anything.
– Cable is coated with durable PVC plastic for protection and prevent scratching The cable is coated and slick. No scratches and slides through the bike frame and helmet opening without friction.
– 100% waterproof – will not rust I live in Nevada. I don’t get much chance to test rust-proofness, but looks the part. 😉
– Popular with Cruiser, Racing, Sports & Harley owners Also popular with this ADV and dirt bike rider.
– Ideal accessory gift for men and women motorcyclists / bikers. The Battlefield Biker is a man on most days, but on the days I am exploring my feminine side, I liked it too.
– Universal fitting for all GMAX, HJC, Shoei, Arai, Icon, Scorpion, Matte, Nolan, Shark, KBC motorcyclist / rider helmets. It easily fit my Arai X-Tour and Shoei MultiTec

Summary of the Review of the Big Pantha Helmet Lock Cable

This is a simple piece of kit as it should be. I find that items that are small, simple, and work are the best kind. Battlefield Bikers give the BigPantha Helmet Lock Cable two sabers up.

Find BigPantha Helmet Lock Cable on Amazon.com

Risk Free Purchase – Lifetime Guarantee!

Super Sausage Cafe and Other Cool Places

One of Britain’s coolest features for riders – cafes catering to bikers near great riding roads and tracks. This is the Super Sausage Cafe. I like the fact that Gareth Owens of the My Biking Life blog is documenting these.

Best Lessons from the Zen Motorcyclist

I found The Zen Motorcyclist blog today. I was not aware that Bud Miller was the same as the guy in RoadRunner Magazine.

Anyway, he has posted a version of the article he had in Roadrunner back in July 2016. It is about the lessons one learns in riding motorcycles and how to share them with others new to bikes.

There were a couple of great quotes and I recommend reading the whole thing, but below was my favorite

I’d tell him that the confidence he gains from riding will reach into other parts of his life and that things which have always scared him no longer will. He’ll grow to fear no situation, person, or circumstance; he’ll come to realize that the obstacle is the path. “Motorcycles will make you formidable,” I’d say.

I wholeheartedly agree. When I am out on my bike, especially in bad weather, looking for a historical point of interest that no GPS is going to guide me to, I feel strong and formidable. I have more gumption, more discipline, and more drive than in any other part of my life. The bike is my steed and I am a traveler that needs no excuse, no introduction, no reason to exist. I just am and that makes me happy. I think that exploring historical battlefields helps with this feeling. I can imagine what life was like at that time. I can imagine the conditions. I can get the feeling of being part of history, not just reading about it.

Thanks, Bud.

The End of Big 650 Singles?

Here is an interesting article on the emissions problem of big 650 singles and their decline. I like what Chris Scott said.

“I am definitely over 650 singles as they are now,” Scott says. “On the dirt, the big single power pulses make nadgery sections awkward where the CB-X twin rolled through smoothly. A single of 450 or less or a twin up to 650 will do me nicely. I can see myself flitting between the two in the coming years.”

That is pretty much where I have landed with my 650 V-Strom and CRF 250L. However, if this article is correct, it will be sad to see the cool old thumpers go away.

Adventure Motorcycle Zenith?

I’m wondering if we have reached maximum trendiness on Adventure bikes? (note I say “trendiness,” not usefulness) The LA Times talks a little about this in this article. I wouldn’t mind it if it meant the prices would go down a little.

I know they are right when they talk about guys who buy these bikes to farkle them up and show them off the same way guys do with 4X4s. However, I have always liked to buy a good solid bike that needed very little to conquer the limited amount of off-road riding I do. The main reason I have always liked adventure bikes is how much fun they are to ride. They ride high generally and the pegs are well off the ground so you can get some good sway in the twisties. When riding in England, you could pass the sports bikes on roundabouts while knocking helmets almost. They can handle a little dirt and gravel and they are generally built very well with good access to the stuff that needs to be maintained. They look good dirty, so I don’t have to clean them very often.

I kind of view mine like an old pick up truck and I pack it like the Beverley Hillbillies.

Canadian Guide Dog Motorcycle Ride 11 September 2016

This sounds fun, but watch out before you drop the kickstand.

The Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind are hosting the Canadian Guide Dog Motorcycle Ride on Sunday, Sept. 11, 2016 from the Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind, 4120 Rideau Valley Drive North, Manotick, ON K4M 1B2, Canada to Iroquois, Ontario (that’s Canada, eh?)

The 28th annual event is organized in conjunction with the Ottawa River Riders and the Canadian Motorcycle Cruisers.

If you’re riding up that way, why not stop by for a spell? You could always tie it in with a Battlefield Biker ride to the War of 1812’s Crysler’s Farm Battlefield just up Highway 2.

Image Credit: By Benson Lossing (The Pictorial Field Book of the War of 1812) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Combat Veteran’s Motorcycle Association Conducts Civil War Ride

Combat Veteran’s Motorcycle Association Chapter 27-3 conducted a ride around the Petersburg, Virginia area on 19-20 August 2016. It was organized by a member who works as National Park Service Ranger, Chris Castle, who is a also a combat veteran. Castle conducted historical briefs at several stops. From the article,

The stop locations included, the Battle of the Crater, and Fort Fisher. The ride ended with lunch at a local restaurant. Everyone left with an understanding of the events that occurred during the 292 day campaign, that led to the retreat and eventual surrender of Lee’s army at Appomattox.

However, the article erroneously states,

This weekend also marked the 150th anniversary to the end of the civil war.

The USA Civil War concluded in the spring of 1865… 151 years ago from 2016. General Robert E. Lee surrendered to General Ulysses S. Grant at the Appomattox Court House in Virginia on 9 April 1865. President Andrew Johnson issued a Proclamation of the end of the war on 9 May 1865 and the last major Confederate forces west of the Mississippi River surrendered on 2 June 1865.

I bet this was a great ride. Good people gathering to learn their nation’s history and a good ride to boot. If you attended, please let me know how it went.

Image Credit: Timothy H. O’Sullivan [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Chain Knowledge

Here is a good primer on chain wear for those of us with chain driven bikes. I’ve not always been good at this, but have vowed to be better at all forms of PMCS in my older age.
I had a Scott Oiler on my old KTM and that always served me well.

Image credit – https://www.osha.gov/SLTC/etools/machineguarding/animations/chain.html

Road and Trail and the BBSV

The Battlefield Biker likes to tote both road and trail bikes with, but normally in the BBSV. (Battlefield Biker Support Vehicle)

Instagram’s @arihenning211 rolls a little different;

What Not To Do On a Motorcycle

The Butler Maps blog has this nice article on “3 Things You Shouldn’t Attempt on Motorcycle Roads.”
1. Don’t ride tipsy
2. Don’t get crazy on wet, slick roads
3. Don’t ride alone until you have a little experience under your belt

I would add a couple more,
4. Don’t go out into uncharted routes without a good map, but I think Butler Motorcycle Maps would approve of this too.
5. Don’t ride without performing regular PMCS on your bike.

I just bought Butler’s Idaho G1 map in preparation for a long ride in Idaho following the Nez Perce War of 1877 trail.

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