On The Road Again

by

Alex Pesacreta

Ahhhhh.... Well, the warm weather seems to have finally arrived! The flowers are blooming, the birds singing and I hear the familiar rumble of fellow motorcyclists. Willy Nelson's On The Road Again starts playing in my mind. The time has come to pull off the bike covers, polish the chrome and go over the T-Clock Inspection Check. This inspection check of your motorcycle is one of the most important elements of the riding season not only for the proper function of your bike but also your safety.

For those of you new to the motorcycle world (and for those who may need a refresher),

T-Clock is an acronym for: T-Tires/wheels, C-controls, L-lights, O-oil, C-chassis and K-kickstand.The inspection process is relatively quick and you needn't be a master mechanic to figure out may need repair. So let's go through a quick overview:

Tires/wheels

  • Check the condition of the tires for any unusual wear, cracks or imbedded objects (most likely nails or screws).
  • Check the tire air pressure when cold (before riding) and adjust to load/speed.
  • Inspect the spokes, rims and seals. Grab the top and bottom of the tire and flex. Make sure there is no freeplay.

Controls

Check the levers, cables, hoses and throttle for any signs of deterioration. Make sure nothing "sticks". Check lubrication.

Lights

  • Check your battery even if you have had it on a trickle charge during storage. Consider replacing the battery every 2-3 years.
  • Check that head lamps, high beams, directionals, horn, hazards and reflectors are intact and working.

Oil

  • Very important! Check that level warm! Check for any leaks.

Chassis

  • Check nuts and bolts for any loosening.
  • Check for missing or broken clips or pins.
  • Check for smooth travel of forks and shocks.

Kickstand

  • Check for cracks, is it bent? Spring intact?

This is just a quick overview of what to do on a visual inspection. If you have any questions or concerns ask your motorcycle's service department or better yet bring the bike in for a check up! It's time to get on the road again!

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