Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Essential Motorcycle Gear - Every Day Carry

As motorcyclists, there is gear we all have in common. Boots. Helmets. Armor. Gloves.

Then there’s the stuff that’s a little more personal, stuff that makes riding a little easier, or a little more comfortable. The stuff most people don't see unless we point it out.

Here’s the stuff I carry every day.

#1. Ziploc bag with insurance and registration information in my jacket pocket. I also kept a card with vital information such as who the hell I am and who to contact in case I can’t talk. That card wore out, but I’m working on a new one.

#2. Tools. When I rode the VX800 every day, I carried a lot more tools. I generally carried a few wrenches in sizes I knew I would need, a pair of vise grips, a box-cutter, a flat head screwdriver and a phillips head screwdriver. On the Triumph, I carry the factory toolkit, and a tire plug kit with a C02 inflator. Those are both kept under the seat. I also carry my trusty Leatherman PST on my belt or in a pocket, because it’s saved my butt many times. I keep a flashlight and a tire gauge in my courier bag. When it’s hot out, or if I know I’m going to park on something soft, I also carry a plastic puck to keep the kickstand from sinking in to the ground.

#3. Cell phone. I’ve come to realize I don’t hate cell phones, I hate rude assholes. I go out of my way to avoid talking on my phone in public, because I don’t want to be one of those assholes you see talking on their cellphone about nothing important. That said, I really like being able to check the current temperature (do I need all my layers?), being able to search for directions, and I’ve even got a flashlight app, in case I get caught in the dark with no light... I don’t rely on the phone in the least - I always keep a couple of quarters on my person for a payphone, and a winning smile in case I need to ask to use someone’s land line.

#4 Pen and paper. Apart from being able to jot down notes when I have a brilliant idea, sometimes it’s good to be able to make notes for driving directions, appointments, phone numbers, you get the idea.

So, that about sums up the stuff I always have with me. Any essentials I’m missing?


bobskoot said...



bobskoot: wet coast scootin

Gary France said...

Lucky - A blonde babe, with long legs.

GPtuners said...


I feel a lot less worn out on a long ride if I am wearing my earplugs. It cuts down on the wind noise, without cutting out much else. I didn't like it at first, but gave it about three rides to get used to it. After the last ride, I never wanted to ride without them...

Take care,

Canajun said...

My CAA card (AAA equivalent) so I don't need to carry all the rest of that stuff.

Bob - Pink crocs??

bobskoot said...


Actually I upgraded by AAA to include motorcycles and M/C towing. You just never know. And also because I travel across the US border a lot, I purchase annual trip insurance to cover medial expenses in the USA and keep a small supply of US funds just in case of spontaneous rides (to the USA)

and another thing which is very important, a roll of TOILET TISSUE and Baby Wipes.

bobskoot: wet coast scootin

Gary France said...

Disc lock, sunglasses (you never know when you might need them, so I always carry them), a stubby screwdriver (to remove the panniers on my Road King, should I need to), Multi-tool (Leatherman), reading glasses, paper & pen.

Conchscooter said...

pink crocs definitely, sunscreen (unless you live in Vancouver)a camera, a book (to negate life's little contretemps), waterproofs (ditto), and some floss (see above).

Anonymous said...

Sunscreen, hand lotion, breath mints, spare sunglasses, rain suit and boot covers, glove liners, disc lock, spare gloves, teensy bottle of visor cleaner and a small microfiber cloth, earplugs, factory tools, tire plug kit with 12v inflator, hand sanitizer, small roll TP, zipper bag with registration and insurance card, neck warmer, teensy purse for cash and one credit card & license, comb, kleenex pack. In addition I wear a U-Tag. I may add a small Monkey Butt powder. Good thing my bike has lots of storage!

irondad said...

A camera. "D" batteries. Not for the camera. Those are for tailgating black SUV's.

Noam Sayin' said...

A timely column, Lucky. I'm putting together a kit for the bike I plan to buy - could be very soon.

Lady Ridesalot said...

Topo map. We like to explore roads we haven't been on and sometimes we find some real gems.