• New Adjustable Machineart ADVance Guard Handguards

    Some of the best ideas tend to be simple ones. And for versatility and avoiding the need to unbolt guards, these new adjustable Machineart ADVance Guard Handguards could well make the cut. With the frame fitted, you can choose to slip an insert in for additional warmth and protection, and also slide a shield up and down for more coverage. So you don’t have to take them on or off, and then discover the bolts went missing in the garage in the Summer. Or they’ve seized up on your bike.

    New Adjustable Machineart ADVance Guard Handguards Open

    The Machineart ADVance Guard Handguards consist of a wide aluminium Safety Frame which allows the air to pass through it. But still means your hands, brake and clutch levers are protected from knocks, scrapes and falls. Which is useful. And it fits to the handlebars and bar ends with lightweight forced aluminium mounts shaped to avoid messing with any cables. And they look alright for everyday riding, too.

    But what happens if the weather gets cooler?

    New Adjustable Machineart ADVance Guard Handguards Closed

    Then you just snap in the Machineart ADVance Guard Handguards Insert, obviously. So that will provide some extra wind and weather protection for your hands. And also more defense against stones and other debris hitting your paws. So if you’re riding off-road behind someone, it’ll mean less chance of getting a pebble propelled by a rear tyre into your digits. If you’ve had it happen, you know how much it hurts.

    But what if it gets even colder? Or the bike in front is sending up a rooster tail of gravel and debris?

    New Adjustable Machineart ADVance Guard Handguards Extended

    For the coldest conditions, there’s the Machineart ADVance Guard Handguards Adjustable Shield. Like the insert, it’s made from a resilient plastic polymer, and it’s quick to attach or remove. And once fitted, you can raise it up to 142mm to stop anything hitting your hands, and keep more of the chill away.

    At the moment, the new adjustable Machineart ADVance Guard Handguards are available for:

    • BMW R 1200 GS/A LC
    • BMW F 800
    • BMW F 700
    • BMW F 650 GS
    • BMW R 1200 R LC
    • BMW R 1200 GS/A (2005-2012)
    • BMW R 1200 GSA (2013)
    • BMW R 1150 GS
    • BMW S 1000 XR
    • KTM 990 Adventure
    • KTM 1090 Adventure
    • KTM 1190 Adventure
    • KTM 1290 Adventure
    • Honda Africa Twin

    More bikes are being added to the list in 2018, and the Machineart ADVance Guard Handguards cost £189, which included a model-specific fitting kit and instructions.

    Continue Reading…

  • The Venhill VT46 Rotating T-Driver Gets Updated

    Ever heard of a T-Driver? It’s a good substitute for a screwdriver or socket in fiddly areas, and can help apply more torque to get stuff undone. And if you want one, the Venhill VT46 Rotating T-Driver has just been updated to make it more even more useful. And it’s available to buy individually for £20.89, or as part of the VT45 Tool Set with screwdriver bits and sockets included.

    Venhill VT46 Rotating T-Driver in the VT45 Tool Set

    So what’s improved? Well the rotating handle can now slide up and down the shaft to click into position. Which means it’s more versatile for those fiddly jobs without much space. And being compact and lightweight, it’s also good for travelling and touring, especially if you might have to mess around with luggage racks and other equipment on the road.

    Venhill VT46 Rotating T-Driver Vertical

    And that’s about it really. It features a standard 3/8 inch drive, so it’ll work with most sockets and adaptors. And you can also order it with a selection of hex and Torx, slotted and Phillips screwdriver bits, plus the most commonly used sizes of metric sockets. Which means less time spent hunting around for that one screwdriver you last used about a year ago and now can’t find. And more time looking like a pro pit mechanic as you screw away with ease.

    It’s probably more amazing that we’ve managed to avoid crude jokes about tools, shafts and screwing so far. But the Venhill VT46 Rotating T-Driver looks like a solid piece of kit that’ll save time and space, so worth knowing about…

    Continue Reading…

  • New Weise Stuttgart Textile Bike Jacket for 2018

    The new Weise Stuttgart textile motorcycle jacket is new for 2018. And it aims to combine value for money with versatile performance. The German city of the same name isn’t just the base for the likes of Porsche and Mercedes-Benz. It’s also a similar climate to the UK, although with more extremes of hot and cold weather.  So that’s handy to know.

    Weise Stuttgart textile Motorcycle Jacket Stone Blue

    Back to the jacket itself, and the design looks alright. The outer has a waterproof, windproof and breathable liner. And inside is a removable 120-gram thermam quilted lining. The Weise Stuttgart textile jacket has adjustment at the waist, upper and lower arms, and cuffs, to enable you to get comfortable and avoid the jacekt flapping around or letting cold weather in. And there’s a Neoprene trimmed collar at the top, plus an 8-inch connection zip for Weise riding trousers at the bottom to enclose you as much as possible.

    Weise Stuttgart textile Motorcycle Jacket Back Stone Blue

    The Weise Stuttgart textile motorcycle jacket also has zipped vents at the chest, back and lower arms to keep you chilled when the temperature rises. And there’s CE-approved armour at the shoulders, elbows and in the back if you’re unfortunate enough to need it.

    Weise Stuttgart textile Motorcycle Jacket Stone Gun

    Other details include the reflective details to help you be seen in low light. And there are waterproof external pockets, a large rear map pocket and two hand-warmer pockets for storage. So you should have plenty of space for your wallet, phone and keys.

    Weise Stuttgart textile Motorcycle Jacket Stone Neon

    Another practical feature is that the Weise Stuttgart textile motorcycle jacket comes with a two-year warranty. It’s available in sizes S-5XL in either Stone/Gun or Stone/Neon colours, and in M-3XL in Stone/Blue. And it will cost you £179.99.

    Continue Reading…

  • Cruztools Roadtech KT1 Tool Kit for KTM Owners

    Own a KTM? Or want to buy something for a motorcyclist who does? The Cruztools Roadtech KT1 Tool Kit could be a good choice. It’s been designed to include the kit you need during routine maintenance of on and off-road KTMs. So owners of the Austrian orange bikes can keep their motorcycles in top condition, including handling basic servicing.

    Cruztools Roadtech KT1 Tool Kit for KTM motorcycles

    Cruztools is a Californian company which has been around for almost 20 years. They produce tools and kits for motorcylists, guitarists and pilots, and also have an irritating way of capitalising the company name as CruzTOOLS. Having started by offering kits for Harley-Davidson riders, the Roadtech KT1 carries the sizes you need for KTM maintenance. Plus the torx drivers and allen keys that fit the fasteners used, particularly on the KTM Adventure and KTM Duke models.

    Which makes sense. How many of us have countless spanner and socket sets in which 2-3 sizes are actually used (and are always the first to be lost somewhere), while the others sit around in mint condition? And by cutting out all the unnecessary stuff, it means you’ll not only find what you need more quickly, but it cuts down on the space you need to carry everything.

    Cruztools Roadtech KT1 Tool Kit for KTM Motorcycles Rolled Up

    So inside the roll-up Cruztools Roadtech KT1 Tool Kit pouch are the following:

    • 8″ Adjustable Spanner
    • 8mm, 10mm & 13mm Combination Spanners
    • 8mm, 10mm & 13mm Ratcheting Socket Wrench
    • 27mm & 32mm Axle Wrench
    • Single-Hand Mole Grips
    • Tyre Gauge
    • Zipties, Loctite, 7mm x 3/4″ Electrical Tape & Fasteners
    • 2.5mm, 3mm, 4mm, 5mm & 6mm Allen Keys
    • PH1, PH2, 3mm Flat & 1/4″ Flat Magnetic Quick Change Screwdriver
    • T20, T25, T30, T40 & T45 Torx Drivers

    You may well have some of the kit already, but actually having a handy way to keep zipties and allen keys with you on a ride can be pretty useful. Particularly if you’re heading off-road and away from anywhere you can direct a recovery vehicle if you break down. Or to have the necessities handy and packed for track days or touring.

    The Cruztools Roadtech KT1 Tool Kit for KTMs costs £80.03.

    Continue Reading…

  • 10 reasons why your business is losing money

    By Permalink

    There’s no doubt that getting up and running with a new business can be very exciting. You are your own boss and that can give you a lot of freedom. However, if you are inexperienced with the corporate world, your enthusiasm could soon fade as the costs start stacking up. Many of those costs, you might not even have foreseen. Perhaps what had started as just a trickle of expenses has, unexpectedly quickly, ballooned into something much more serious. How you use vehicles for business purposes could be to blame – so, let’s look more closely at how you can control these costs better.

    Inefficient use of fuel

    Your vehicles are incapable of running without fuel, making it seem very necessary to spend some of your precious revenue on. However, you might not be maximising the efficiency of that fuel. Alec Lee, operations manager at small-tours firm Rabbie’s, made a major admission to The Guardian.

    He said that training in more energy-efficient driving helped his firm to save money on fuel.Workers were “also decreasing the general wear and tear on the vehicle” – which, in the longer term, could help Rabbie’s reduce its necessity of paying for costly repairs.

    Failure to regularly audit your vehicles

    Spending time carrying out this kind of audit can help you see where cash might be being haemorrhaged, advises Grant Boardman, Fleet Alliance’s regional sales director.

    Boardman, whose firm keeps SMEs supplied with fleet management services, explains: “It’s about understanding the whole-life costs of a vehicle”. That means, he adds: “Not just looking at the purchase or hire price, but other consequential factors over the next three or four years.”

    Leasing commercial vehicles from a single provider

    Does your company routinely hire commercial vehicles, like vans, from the same provider? Then you are making what Boardman has branded a “classic mistake”.

    What you should instead do, he says, is look for a combination of providers capable of offering what you need – and all at what adds up to the lowest possible overall price. He also notes that, in doing so, you should especially strongly consider lease costs and fuel consumption.

    Not paying attention to company cars’ CO2 emissions

    You might often use cars in running your business; cars put to this purpose can be succinctly referred to as company cars. If you indeed utilise cars in this manner, then check, before you decide to buy any such vehicle, how much it will produce in CO2 emissions on the road.

    This is crucial as, for discerning how much tax should be payable on different cars, the government puts these cars into different “emission bands”. The less CO2 emissions a car is responsible for, the better its CO2 rating can be and so the less tax you could need to pay on this vehicle.

    Improper management of your fleet

    If you have an entire fleet of vehicles at your company’s disposal, how is that fleet being managed? If the company is directly handling those affairs, you might want to rethink that strategy.

    John Hargreaves, Kia’s head of fleet and remarketing, has noted that a vehicle fleet poses a “significant overhead” for many businesses. That fleet “should be managed professionally, whether by a dedicated person within the company or by outsourcing to a specialist vehicle management company,” headded.

    Not taking advantage of telematics for cost-cutting

    You might have seen or heard the word “telematics” occasionally popping up in discussions about how money can be saved on corporate vehicles. However, what does it actually mean?

    It is commonly used as shorthand for “vehicle tracking systems”, as they are more formally called. Jenny Powley, who has worked at the RAC as a sales director for corporate partnerships, has recommended such systems that “collect data on the vehicle and give business owners a much better picture of wear and tear, enabling them to take cost-effective preventative measures.”

    Not using fuel cards

    These payment cards are available from various firms, the RAC included, and can help you lower your fuel bills. Furthermore, as Powley points out, when a business owner uses them, they receive “regular reports and can see exactly what is spent, rather than having drivers submit receipts”.

    Taking out vehicle insurance for longer than is necessary

    Your company’s vehicle needs might actually be very low. For instance, they could be limited to requiring simply a van for use in transporting items to a new office or an even more modest car for occasional times that you want to attend a trade show or team bonding event.

    That’s fine, but it doesn’t take away from the need to check that you have insurance for a vehicle before you use it. In the UK, driving without insurance can lead to you incurring a massive fine and other penalties. However, a standard insurance policy lasting a year or more can be much costlier than short term car insurance which you could source through UK broker Call Wiser.

    Trying to meet vehicle costs by pricing products too highly

    You might reason that you need to price your company’s products at a particular – probably relatively high – level because you have hefty costs to pay in keeping vehicles running.

    However, advice posted by Forbes insists on the need to strike a middle ground when pricing products. Set prices excessively high and too many people could be put off. Nonetheless, on the other hand, keeping prices overly low could see you struggling to achieve a profit.

    Whatever prices you settle on, consider that trimming those vehicle costs – by, for instance, using remedies listed in this article –could be a better strategy than keeping your prices high.

    Reluctance to invest in vehicles necessary for growth

    One reason why we are eager to provide advice on how to cut costs of running vehicles is that paying those costs could, ultimately, be necessary for cultivating your company’s growth.

    Therefore, if you have so far resisted drawing extensively on automotive assistance for your own company, this could help explain why it is financially struggling. Avoid the false economy!

    Continue Reading…