One of the more significant questions we ask ourselves as riders before beginning our journey esteemed motorcyclists is - is my motorcycle comfortable enough to ride on the highway, or for a longer distance? Our favorite answer to that question is - maybe, but not really. Maybe, because if you already have a comfortable cruiser or tourer, you’re already on a good bike, and not really, because any bike can be made even more comfortable for travel. Here are 8 ways you can make your riding experience more pleasant:
Yes, we are well aware that windshields don’t look great on some motorcycles, especially when you have spent so much money on a good-looking cruiser or tourer - which is why they come as an added accessory option. They are there to serve one very important purpose, which is to protect the rider from oncoming traffic; the traffic of bugs, rain, and other fast flying small objects in the wind. Windshields will not only protect you from unwanted, sharp physical contact, but also from the chills of cold wind that will be blowing directly onto you. On long rides, that’s really helpful. Bigger bikes are able to attach larger windshields, and the riders are usually very well protected because of that.
2. Tank Bag
You have motorcycle hard trunks or trunk bags, saddle bags, and tank bags. Ttank bags are the least common accessory, but they really should become more popular. A tank bag is basically a bag that is secured onto your tank, and you can store stuff in there that you might need quick access to. Tank bags come in all kinds of shapes and sizes, so you need to decide what kind of tank bag you need. Things to consider:
⁃ the shape and size of your tank
⁃ The capacity of the ba
⁃ Whether you plan to leave it on permenantly or not
⁃ Whether it’s for long rides or daily travel
You can read more about the types of tank bags and their functionality here.
3. Blind Spot Mirrors
Every rider knows the limitations of side mirrors on a motorcycle. You are able to check your rear view but the mirrors are usually not a wide enough angle to really see what’s happening behind you, causing enough blind spots for a worry. To solve this problem, you can try to use blind spot mirrors. They’re usually concave mirrors that give you a much wider view, and it takes some getting used to. However, they’re not ideal for sportier motorcycles because of the size of the mirrors that come with the bike - there might not be enough space on the mirrors to attach additional blind spot mirrors. But fret not, you can always buy a wider pair of mirrors and dedicate them to your long rides.
4. Seat Pads
Literally add comfort to your ride by adding seat pads. If you’re riding in hot weather, you might want to avoid gel seats because they can get uncomfortably hot. Of course there are seat options for you to replace your entire stock seat, but we suggest considering seat pads first instead because they’re a lot cheaper, and you have a decent variety to choose from. However, if you do decide to change your seat, you need to take your time and test out a good number of seats before settling on one. On top of that, you still get to add a memory foam cushion or anything of that sort if it appeals to your buttocks!
5. Cruise Control Kit
This is specially for the riders who don’t have the privilege of a built-in cruise control function on their bikes. Cruise control kits are available for a super cheap on Amazon or any other marketplace online. You can get a decent set for about $80-100, but of course there are other more sophisticated options that also come with more sophisticated prices. If you are a long distance cruiser, consider a cruise control kit a must, and you can say goodbye to wrist fatigue
6. Heated Grips
An underrated accessory, but with a very notable impact especially if you are riding in cold weather or in the rain. Besides the exposed skin on your body, your fingers will likely be the first to get cold, and cold fingers equal frozen reaction time - making heated grips an accessory for added safety. Furthermore, it can get very uncomfortable to ride when your fingers are cold. Hence, heated grips for motorcycles make it to the top 8 on our list. Here is an easy step-by-step tutorial on how to install heated grips by HeroRR. They're super easy to set up.
7. Adjustable Levers
Ergonomics is what comfort is all about. Most motorcycles come with adjustable handlebars and suspension setup, so there should be no problem adjusting your bike to comfortably fit you. Nevertheless, it can be strenuous to ride for long distances if your levers are out of place. You might not notice the strain at first, but it will gradually build up on you. When selecting your adjustable levers, don’t forget to have your gloves on. You need to get a feel of what your actual riding condition is, and add to that.
8. Gear and Helmet
This one is pretty obvious, but apparently not obvious enough. Good gear will give you good comfort. Invest in high quality riding gear and choose the right kind of gear based on the weather you ride in. You cannot put a price on safety, so a good set of riding gear will also keep you safe. At the same time, try to invest in a good helmet. Choose one that is comfortable and has better noise cancellation. Wind noise can be damaging in the long run, and as riders, we all know how painfully noisy it can get. One of the best helmet brands out there is Shark. Check out the Shark collection here.