Riding For Every Season

One of the most exciting things about summertime is getting back on your bike. A lot of motorcyclists don’t ride during the harsh winter months, especially in Chicagoland, but even those who do relish the return of sunny 70 degree days and warm evenings.

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What kind of investments does an online bookstore on Amazon require?

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Istanbul and the same coffee or tea
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It is no mystery that motorcyclists prefer summer to fall and winter riding. However, that doesn’t mean we can get away from preparing ourselves, and our bikes, for cooler weather.

Preparing Your Motorcycle for Cooler Temps

Preparing for fall and winter means doing a little extra work on your bike. With temperature shifts comes tire pressure changes, different oil requirements, and battery failures.

Checking tire pressure in the winter and especially the fall, when temperatures change more drastically and frequently, is vital to staying safe on the road. When the temperature drops, so does tire pressure, and the opposite occurs when the temperature rises. Frequent tire pressure checks can prevent unnecessary wear on your tires, as well as protect against a flat. If you ride on tires with pressures that are either too low or too high, you increase the risks that come with improper tire inflation, such as handling mishaps and rough riding.

Checking your oil is an important part of mechanical maintenance for any vehicle, as is changing it. When the weather in Chicagoland starts to turn cool, it’s time for an oil change. Choose an oil that is better suited for colder temperatures to ensure your bike gets the proper lubrication and you don’t put unnecessary wear on your engine.

Finally, don’t forget to check your battery before the roads turn icy. Batteries have to work harder in the cold, no matter how new they are. Batteries don’t last forever, so it’s important to test yours before winter to make sure it’s going to remain reliable, especially if it’s a few years old. The last thing anyone wants is to turn the key in the ignition only to be met with silence, especially on a cold night when you are miles from home.

Quality Used Harley Motorcycles Near Elmhurst

At Chicago Cycles Motorsports we don’t only know how to care for your bike, we stock a large selection of top-of-the-line used motorcycles that can’t wait to get back on the road. We have the best used Harley motorcycles in Elmhurst, Illinois and all of Chicagoland. So, whether you need help preparing your ride for the upcoming cold weather, or you are just looking for an amazing deal on the bike of your dreams, come visit us today.

The Benefits of Riding a Motorcycle

It’s quite common to hear about the dangers of riding a motorcycle, but we hardly ever hear about the physical – and more importantly – the mental benefits of taking the long way home. Nevertheless, there are significant health benefits to riding, and once you see how beneficial riding can be, you may decide to head out and buy a used bike in Elmhurst.

Improved Mood

One of the most important benefits of riding, as any motorcyclist can attest to, is a more positive attitude. There is actually a scientific reason for that feeling of pure joy that comes over you after a long ride. As you ride, twisting your wrist causes adrenaline to be produced – which in turn releases “feel good” hormones, called endorphins. Endorphins minimize pain, increase pleasure, and improve mood.

You may also notice that after a long ride, it feels as if a weight has been lifted, similar to after one completes mindful meditation. This is because when you’re on a motorcycle, you’re always analyzing and adjusting your speed, body position, and road position. This forces you into focusing on the present, which means your mind has no room for worries about everyday problems like money or what’s happening at work. When you climb off your bike, your mind is free of all those stressful thoughts.

Cognitive Function

A scientific study conducted by Ryuta Kawasima, Yamaha Japan, and the Tohoku University found that riding a motorcycle can actually improve your cognitive function. During their experiment, participants’ test scores improved significantly with regular riding over the course of two months. The researchers contributed these results to the high level of alertness and rapid problem solving required when riding a motorcycle.

Neck and Core Strength

The day after riding, almost any motorcyclist will tell you that the muscles in their neck are sore. This is partly due to wearing a helmet and partly because of the wind resistance you incur while riding. This being said, it’s important to make sure your motorcycle fits you correctly and you don’t have to constantly strain your neck while riding, as this will have a negative impact in the long run.

When it comes to strengthening your core, riding provides an enjoyable alternative to planks. Because every maneuver you make, especially low-speed maneuvers, involves the use of your core muscle groups, they will inevitably become stronger the more you ride.

Burn Calories and Skip the Squats

Another advantage of riding is that you will burn extra calories. In fact, you can burn up to 600 calories per hour with intense motocross riding, and 200-300 per hour even if you stick to the streets.

The constant moving required to ride, gripping with your knees and thighs strengthens your thighs, and in turn, strengthens your knees. Since these are low-impact movements, riding is good for people who suffer from knee pain, as it is almost a type of physical therapy. If you are ready to give it a try, stop into Chicago Cycles and Motorsports and buy a used bike near Elmhurst today!

How to Choose Your First Motorcycle

So you’re in the market for a motorcycle? Of course you can always just go with your gut, or what your friends ride, or with a popular brand name. However, if you invest a bit of time before making your purchase, you are more likely to end up with a motorcycle that meets your needs and fulfills your expectations. We hope the information below will help you make a more informed decision.

What Type of Rider are You?

When you picture yourself cruising down the open road astride that new motorcycle, what do you think about? Long, cross-country road trips? Or racing down the highway during an afternoon with friends? When deciding on the right motorcycle, you need to consider how you plan to use it.

Make a “Must-Haves” List

Most of the decisions regarding your first motorcycle will be based on your riding style as well as your personal preferences. You’ll need to find a bike that meets your standards in seat height, weight, and engine size. The best way to do that is to go to the dealership and try out several different models.

Narrow Down Your Choices

Motorcycles can be divided into a few main categories. You can help narrow down your choices by identifying the category of motorcycle you are interested in based on the specific characteristics unique to that category.

– Standard models are for everyone. They are a “one-size-fits-all” type of bike, yet they are still available in various styles as well as a range of sizes and horsepower levels.

– Sport Bikes are built for speed, not comfort. They are lighter in weight and designed to force the body into a more forward position. Some level of comfort will be sacrificed – but you aren’t giving up any of the thrills.

– Dual Sport Bikes are popular with riders who enjoyed dirt bikes in their younger days. They are tough, light, and suited for a variety of terrain – sort of like that pick-up truck you can take off-roading. 

– Cruisers are built for comfort, not speed. The overall design creates a relaxed and comfortable riding experience, with a lower seat and higher handlebars.

Set Your Budget

This is one of the most important parts of the purchase process. When setting your budget, don’t forget to account for maintenance, insurance, and riding gear. Depending on your driving habits, your maintenance schedule will vary.

Used Motorcycles for Sale in Elmhurst, IL

When you purchase a new motorcycle, you won’t have to worry about any cosmetic issues, and you’ll get the newest technology and features. However, when you choose a used motorcycle, you’ll have the advantage of buying your dream bike at a much lower cost. Before making a final decision, come check out our large selection of quality used motorcycles for sale near Elmhurst, IL. You won’t be disappointed!

How to Stay Cool on Your Motorcycle this Summer

During the heat of summer, especially when you’re planning on riding for several hours, it’s important to do what’s necessary to stay cool. It will make the ride more enjoyable and help you avoid heat exhaustion.

Stay Hydrated

Heat exhaustion is a real risk for anyone who is dehydrated and exposed to high temperatures for an extended period. It can be caused by salt depletion as well as water depletion. Therefore, it’s important to restore electrolytes that are lost through sweating as well as replenishing fluid. Stay hydrated by wearing a hydration backpack and bring salty snacks or sports drinks to help replenish electrolytes.

Avoid Caffeine and Alcohol

It’s still debatable whether caffeine contributes to dehydration, but consuming plain water (plus an occasional sports drink) is the best way to avoid dehydration. Additionally, you should wait until you’re finished riding for the day before consuming any alcohol – as it not only accelerates dehydration, but it impairs your ability to ride.

Wear the Right Base Layers

Our bodies regulate temperature by sweating. As sweat evaporates, it cools the surface of the skin. Choose synthetic base layers that wick moisture away from your skin, increasing the evaporative cooling efficiency of your body. Additionally, snug-fitting, stretchy base layers that provide light compression provide for better circulation and less muscle fatigue.

Full-Coverage Riding Apparel

No matter how strong your desire to wear a T-shirt, shorts, and flip-flops is, wear all your gear – all the time for your safety. No one plans to wrack up, but it happens, and the proper gear can reduce the severity of your injuries. If you want to wear flip flops when you get to where you’re going – toss a pair in your saddle bag.

Get an Evaporative Cooling Vest or Neck Wrap

Boost the power of evaporative cooling with a special vest that is worn under you riding apparel to help keep your core cool. Choose one made from polymer-embedded fabric that you soak in water, or the type you fill like a bladder. You can go a step further by adding a neck wrap made using the same water-absorbing polymer crystal technology or simply soak a neck gaiter or bandana (but they dry out a lot faster).

Use Common Sense

In addition to the aforementioned tips, take common-sense precautions like avoiding riding during the hottest part of the day. Take frequent breaks, and don’t try to “tough it out” if you begin to feel lightheaded or dizzy, your skin starts to feel unusually cold or clammy, or you experience muscle cramps or a headache. These can be signs of heat exhaustion which can lead to heat stroke – a serious situation that can be fatal.

Used Motorcycles for Sale Near Elmhurst, IL

Longer days filled with sunshine are perfect for motorcycling. Stay safe, and if you’ve been dreaming about traveling down the open road on a motorcycle – but don’t own one – it’s time to visit Chicago Motor Sports for quality used motorcycles for sale near Elmhurst, IL.

5 Ways to Make Your Bike More Visible

When riding a motorcycle, visibility is paramount to your safety. Defensive driving is almost second nature to most drivers, but unfortunately, that usually means they are looking out for other cars and trucks. Motorcycles, because of their size, are simply not on most drivers’ radar. The more you can attract the attention of other drivers, the less likely you are to be involved in a collision. Here are five ways to help make your motorcycle more visible to other drivers:

1. Ride a Brightly Colored Motorcycle

Because motorcycles accelerate and decelerate faster than cars, and they are significantly smaller than other vehicles, they are both harder to see and more difficult to gauge distance from. Darkly colored bikes can exacerbate the problem, making them almost invisible to other drivers on the roadway. A bright color will significantly increase your visibility, meaning another driver might notice you a fraction of a second sooner – possibly saving your life. We have lots of brightly colored used motorcycles for sale near Elmhurst, IL!

2. Use Safety Tape and Wear High Visibility Gear

A motorcycle rider takes up almost as much visual space as the bike does. Therefore, what a rider wears is as important as the color of the motorcycle. This means that wearing a high-visibility jacket or helmet, like orange or yellow, will immediately draw the driver’s eyes instantly in the rider’s direction. This is also less of a commitment to neon colors than driving a brightly colored bike.

Using reflective tape automatically increases the visual footprint of your bike. Put it on the front of your forks, around your wheel rims, or on the edges of your panniers. It won’t do much good during the daytime but will be extremely helpful at night as each piece acts as an independent light source.

3. Stay Out of Blind Spots

Never position your motorcycle where a driver can’t see you without moving their head. They are called blind spots for a reason, and even though they can’t be avoided completely, adjusting your lane position to minimize this danger is vital to your safety.

4. Use Your Lights Wisely

If you need to draw attention to yourself, tapping your brakes will turn your brake light into a giant blinker. This works well for tailgaters and anyone who is following you who doesn’t seem to be paying attention. It also works to warn others who are riding with you of a dangerous road condition ahead.

Use your high beams during the day. It won’t upset other drivers, as the brightness isn’t as much of a contrast as it would be at night, and often that bright glimmer is all they need to notice you’re there.

Add auxiliary lights, as they provide similar benefits as reflective tape, but are visible even in the daytime. Add them to both the front and back of your bike and consider using a strobe on the back when stopping.

5. Use your Horn

Horns aren’t always used as a sign of aggravation – they can actually be quite useful to let someone know you’re there. This is especially true if a car is pulling out and hasn’t looked in your direction. A polite “beep, beep” often makes them look your way.

Used Motorcycles For Sale Near Elmhurst, IL

Stay safe – and if you’re in the market for a motorcycle, you’ll find lots of used motorcycles for sale near Elmhurst, IL at Chicago Cycles and Motorsports.

How to Clean Your Motorcycle

With the spring season in full swing, many people are making progress on their various spring-cleaning projects. If you haven’t had a chance to begin yours yet—don’t worry—there’s still plenty of time left before Summer. Today we’ll cover a few best practices when it comes to cleaning your motorcycle at home.

Things to Avoid

Don’t make the same mistakes that others have made before you! Before you get started, it’s important to make note of what NOT to do. Be sure to avoid:

– Cleaning products that aren’t designed for use on motorcycles or cars

– Working on your motorcycle while it’s still warm from use

– Using machines that expel high-pressure water or air

Washing Your Motorcycle

Unlike with cars, motorcycles can’t simply pass through the car wash. Cleaning your motorcycle properly involves a multi-step process:

Step 1

Use cool water to rinse loose dirt and debris from your motorcycle, carefully avoiding spraying water into the muffler outlet or electrical parts. For those sensitive areas, it’s better to use a sponge or soft cloth.

Step 2

Using a cloth or sponge, clean stubborn grime away from the plastic components of your bike using a solution of mild detergent and water.

Step 3

When you’re done cleaning your motorcycle, rinse lingering soap away with more cool water. Dry the bike using a soft cloth and then lubricate the chain.

Step 4

Start the engine. Let the motorcycle run for a few minutes and then carefully test the brakes before riding—you may need to pump them a few times for normal performance to return. The next time you ride, give yourself a longer stopping distance to ensure the brakes have returned to their typical responsiveness.

Used Motorcycles for Sale Near Elmhurst, IL

Chicago Cycles and Motorsports buys and sells used motorcycles. We have many different types of used motorcycles for sale near Elmhurst, IL. Whether you’re looking for your first bike or are ready to switch things up, we can help you find something that’s a perfect fit for your riding style and preferences. Contact us today!

How to Plan a Great Motorcycle Trip

There’s nothing like seeing the world from atop a motorcycle. Road trips in cars can be fun too, but the open perspective, sense of freedom, and satisfying rush that comes from riding a motorcycle cross-country is definitely something special. We think every enthusiast should experience the deep satisfaction of a long-distance ride at least once. Here are some tips to help you plan a successful motorcycle trip.

Pick Your Destination

Sometimes the destination choice drives the trip, and sometimes the trip drives the destination choice. Maybe you want to travel to visit old friends or family—or maybe they’re coming with you, and you want to experience the ride together. Either way, you can’t start planning for an epic motorcycle trip without knowing the ultimate end-point.

Know Your Gas Mileage

The last thing you want to do is get stranded on the road with an empty gas tank. Even if your bike has a built-in tracking feature, it’s not a bad idea to manually check your gas mileage while riding closer to home. Determining out how many miles you can go before hitting empty is key.

Determine Your Route

Once you know where you want to go, how far your bike can go before needing a pit stop, start drawing out possible routes. We recommend plotting out a path that will allow you to take in scenery on the way, including some areas with twists and turns to keep things interesting. Remember to incorporate gas stops based on your bike’s needs.

Work Out Your Lodgings

Staying with friends? Kicking up your feet at a motel? Camping under the stars? If your trip lasts more than a day, you’ll want to decide where you’re bedding down at night. Try to find stops along your route that are bike-friendly, with a secure parking lot or storage, and won’t put you too far off your ideal route.

Pack For the Road

This is when things can get tricky. It’s important to have everything you need, and nothing you don’t. Overloading your bike can have negative consequences for your safety on the road, so make sure to consider weight distribution when packing. Make sure that your items are very securely attached to your bike—losing an item on the road wouldn’t just be a bummer, it could be extremely dangerous to yourself and others.

Looking for a used motorcycle dealer near Chicago? We’re located in the Village of Stone Park and can help you find the right ride for your road trip. Call us with any questions or stop in to have a look around. Happy riding!

The Importance of Drive Belt Maintenance

Real bikers know that the importance of a well-maintained ride is second to none. But even veteran enthusiasts can make the mistake of forgetting to look after their bike’s drive belt, which is strong, stretch-resistant and made from tensile cords. Because a drive belt can last up to 100,000 miles before needing replacement, riders may lose track of this important part of motorcycle maintenance.

How Often Should I Inspect My Drive Belt?

When your belt is first installed, plan to inspect it after the first 1,000 miles. Whether you take it to a professional mechanic or examine it yourself, a tension check should also be completed. After that, it’s a good idea to get into the habit of checking out your bike’s drive belt every time you change your oil (about every 5,000 miles). These regular check-ups can help your drive belt reach its maximum lifespan, as well as support the overall feel of your ride and keep you safer on the road.

When is it Time to Replace My Drive Belt?

It’s common for riders to notice their drive belt has been damaged by rocks kicked up from the road below. Damage like this, along with damage to the teeth and shredding that exposes the internal tensile fibers, will necessitate a drive belt replacement before 100,000 miles of use. Motorcycle owners who choose to remove the plastic belt cover for looks make a choice to shorten the lifespan of this part. If you do decide to remove the cover, it’s a good idea to keep a closer eye on the condition of your drive belt.

While rocks are the most likely culprit, any kind of debris trapped in the belt can cause damage to the belt as well as the teeth. Regular inspections and removal of this buildup can help extend the lifespan of your drive belt. Cracking on the outside of the belt may also necessitate earlier replacement.

Contact Us

Harley Davidson motorcycles began switching to drive belts in 1980. Ever since then, drive belt maintenance has been a regular part of owning and loving a Harley. If you’re looking for a used Harley Davidson near Chicago, give us a call with questions or come visit our shop in person. We’re located in the Village of Stone Park, a short distance from the city. Hope to see you there!

Winter Motorcycle Care

As we get deeper into the winter season, it’s important to make sure you’re completing all your motorcycle maintenance and care. Otherwise, especially if you’re riding a used Harley Softail in Chicago, your beloved bike might not last as long as you expect it to.

Fortunately, here at Chicago Cycles Motorsports, we’ve been maximizing the quality and longevity of all sorts of motorcycles, including used Harley Softails in Chicago. And we want to pass the knowledge we’ve gained onto you.

Check Coolant Levels and Tire Pressure

Before winter temperatures take a toll on your motorcycle, it’s important to ensure that your antifreeze levels are adequate for the winter. If they’re not, add antifreeze to your coolant system. 

Also, as temps go down, air will condense which leads to decreased tire pressure. Check tire pressure periodically during the winter and keep the tires pumped up.

Ready your Motorcycle for Storage

If you’re going to be storing your bike all winter, it’s important to do some prep work to avoid problems. Before storing your bike, you should:

  • Remove the battery and store it somewhere it will not freeze.
  • Add fuel stabilizer, top off fuel levels, and ride the bike to ensure the stabilizer is distributed throughout the system.
  • Protect exhaust pipes with plastic bags (or similar) and lightly oil muffler ends
  • Lube up any moving parts including cables, forks, chains, etc.
  • Wash, wax, and cover your bike.
  • Protect your tires by elevating the bike if possible.

If you follow all these winter maintenance tips, whether you ride a used Harley Softail in Chicago or anything else, your bike will be good to go when it’s riding season again.