When it comes to taking care of your bike or motorcycle, you want to know that you are doing the right thing, not just tinkering cluelessly. By carrying out regular maintenance, you can ensure your bike stays in top condition and ultimately extend its lifespan. Here are Castrol South Africa’s ten top tweaks, from the Castrol-backed San Carlo Honda Gresini team.
Tweak 1: Keep it Clean
There is a reason that you never see a dirty MotoGP bike. Just by carefully cleaning and inspecting all the exposed areas of your bike and its engine, you are able to determine whether your bike needs its chain adjusted, if your oil levels are low or if your brake pads need to be changed.
With a wide variety of cleaning products on the market such as Greentec Bike Cleaner, there’s no reason for cleaning your bike to be a strenuous exercise. Greentec Bike Cleaner gently and quickly dissolves dirt and grime. You will want to follow up with a dose of Castrol Silicon Spray to renovate and protect the plastic parts of your bike. To add some shine, its best to finish off with Castrol Bike Polish.
Tweak 2: Keep Your Shocks Tip-Top
Sports bikes tend to go through the wringer, for that reason it’s a good idea to keep an eye on your suspension. When necessary, you can upgrade, service or replace your shocks to suit your needs. You might even want to consider stripping the forks and shocks, then servicing and re-valving them. To refresh tired, soggy forks, try Castrol’s range of synthetic and mineral oils.
Tweak 3: Keep Your Brakes Clean
Brake callipers are another thing which are often overlooked on a motorcycle. Brake dust, road grime and grit get into your brakes through continuous use. It is best to service your brake callipers at least once a year by removing, stripping and cleaning them. Another essential form of maintenance is the regular changing of brake fluid.
Tweak 4: The Right Oil for the Right Job
Castrol’s full synthetic 4-stroke engine oil has been designed for high-performance sports bikes. Drawing from racing technology, Castrol Power 1 Racing 4T oil is a direct product of Castrol’s experience with teams like San Carlo Honda Gresini. For increased acceleration and optimum engine performance, try Castrol Power 1 Racing 4T oil.
Tweak 5: For Fuel Economy and Improved Performance
If you are looking for overall improved performance and fuel economy, consider installing a power commander. This can be done on its own or with an end-can or exhaust. A power commander works in conjunction with your engine’s ECU, altering fuelling to smooth out the power curve.
Tweak 6: Check Your Pressure
Tyre pressure is the most important factor to influence the handling of your motorcycle. By checking your tyre pressure on a daily basis and adhering to the manufacturer’s recommendations, you can ensure better handling, fuel economy and performance from your bike.
Tweak 7: Adjust Your Bike Chain
Correctly adjusting the chain on your motorcycle is instrumental in ensuring that power is efficiently transferred onto the road and that the sprocket doesn’t wear out prematurely. If the chain is too tight it might snap, if it’s too slack, it is likely to jump. Use Castrol Chain Lube Racing to lubricate your chain and to reduce wear.
Tweak 8: Track Tyres or Road Tyres
As with the air pressure of your tyres, the type of tyre on your bike plays an extremely important role in ensuring efficiency and performance of your motorcycle. On a sports bike such as the CBR600RR, it is best to match the tyre to your riding style. In MotorGP, the Honda Gresini team use Bridgestone tyres. Track day riders might want to consider using Bridgestone’s Battlax BT002 Racing Street tyre; it’s a good compromise between road usability and track grip. For road bikes however, Bridgestone’s Battlax BT016 is a better fit.
Tweak 9: Silence is Golden
If you’re trying to tackle that all-important power curve, consider fitting an aftermarket silencer onto your bike. While bikes are built to fit within the emission and sound laws of the countries they are built for, fitting a free-breathing end-can or full exhaust system can give you that much more horsepower.
Tweak 10: Like a Glove
Everyone comes in different shapes and sizes and bikes are made to fit a range of different types of people. By adjusting your bike to fit you, your bike will offer a more comfortable riding experience. You want to adjust the levers, seat positions, foot-pegs and maybe even try new bars or a new screen.