The Achievable Dream 5-part series - the definitive guide on DVD for planning your motorcycle adventure. Get Ready! covers planning, paperwork, medical and many other topics! "Inspirational and Awesome!" See the trailer here!
Gear Up! is a 2-DVD set, 6 hours! Which bike is right for me? How do I prepare the bike? What stuff do I need - riding gear, clothing, camping gear, first aid kit, tires, maps and GPS? What don't I need? How do I pack it all in? Lots of opinions from over 150 travellers! "This DVD will save you a fortune!"See the trailer here!
So you've done it - got inspired, planned your trip, packed your stuff and you're on the road! This section is about staying healthy, happy and secure on your motorcycle adventure. And crossing borders, war zones or oceans!
On the Road! is 5.5 hours of the tips and advice you need to cross borders, break down language barriers, overcome culture shock, ship the bike and deal with breakdowns and emergencies."Just makes me want to pack up and go!" See the trailer here!
Tire Changing!Grant demystifies the black art of Tire Changing and Repair to help you STAY on the road! "Very informative and practical." See the trailer here!
Ladies on the Loose! For the first time ever, a motorcycle travel DVD made for women, by women! These intrepid women share their tips to help you plan your own motorcycle adventure. They also answer the women-only questions, and entertain you with amazing tales from the road! Presented by Lois Pryce, veteran solo traveller through South America and Africa and author of 'Lois on the Loose', and 'Red Tape and White Knuckles.'
"It has me all fired up to go out on my own adventure!" See the trailer here!
We're not a big multi-national company, just two people who love motorcycle travel and have grown a hobby into a full time job and a labour of love.
When you decide to become a Member, it helps directly support the site. You get additional privileges on the HUBB, access to the Members Private Store, and more to come as we roll out new systems. Of course, you get our sincere thanks, good karma and knowing you're helping to keep the motorcycle travel dream alive. :-)
Travel BooksMotorcycle and travel books to inspire and inform you!
DVDs - Watch and Learn!
Horizons Unlimited presents!
Achievable Dream The definitive guide to planning your motorcycle adventure! This insanely ambitious 2-year project has produced an informative and entertaining 5-part, 18 hour DVD series. "The ultimate round the world rider's how-to DVD!" MCN UK.
Collectors Box SetAll 5 DVDs with a custom printed slip case. "The series is 'free' because the tips and advice will save much more than you spend on buying the DVD's."
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My 1984 (43F) is still a bitch to start cold, but starts first kick when warm if I apply choke (therefore there is still something in the primary carb that I haven't bottomed out yet).
(1 kick only counts when you have kicked it over to find TDC - an average of 3 strokes of the kicker).
Have a look on YouTube - search on "XT600 kick start" and you will find out how easy it is to start a a well set up XT600. Including people that weigh lots less than you. Here is a good example
The automatic decompressor plus the ignition circuit make it much easier than old fashioned kick start bikes. And the ignition circuit prevents kick backs too, so don't worry about getting chucked over the handlebars.
The ignition circuit is independant of the charging circuit - they have separate coils on the stator. So, the battery has no influence on how well it starts.
I bought a kickstart only XR600 Honda when I was in my mid 40's and 15+ yrs later I still have it. I've kickstarted that bike under just about every condition imaginable from hub deep in sand in the Sahara to hub deep in snow in the Alps, in torrential rain, in freezing cold, on the start line at Silverstone, in bogs and, worst of all, at the head of traffic queues in London when it stalls at lights. My considered opinion is that kickstarting a 600 single, particularly a trailie where the kickstart is likely to be high off the ground, sucks!
If you've ever had a small 2-smoke kicking it over is easy - just fold out the lever and kick. You can even do it sitting on the bike. There is a knack to getting a 600 single going- even with the autolinkage between the decompressor and the kickstart. The piston has to be in exactly the right place, the kick has to be of the right type and you have to be in the right part of the carburation cycle. Get any of those wrong and you're going nowhere - unless it's over the handlebars when it kicks back (usually when you do a half hearted kick).
Don't underestimate the amount of physical effort needed. It's one thing to start it up in two kicks on a sunny summer day when you're dressed in a T-shirt and shorts. It's quite another to do it on freezing winter morning when you're cocooned in multiple layers of clothing and you can't bend your knee enough even to reach the kickstart never mind move it. And I won't even mention the balancing act required to fire it up on a diesel covered off camber filling station forecourt. At times like that it's easier to give any local kids a small amount of money to push start you.
My advice - make sure if it's supposed to have an electric start that it does - and that it works. Any cost or weight saving will be more than compensated for in sweat and wailing and knashing of teeth very quickly.
I agree with the sentiments above. I've owned several 600-650 dual sports some kick start only and some electric. Once you get the technique right kicking over a 600/650 is usually OK and quite satisfying and impresses your friends. But the important word is usually - you always get the occasional day where the fuel is off, or you do it too half heartedly the first few times and wet the plug or it just doesn't like the weather or....these moments are usually combined with you being in a hurry, feeling sick, stuck in traffic...then kick starts on big singles absolutely suck.
If you can, get one with electric start - you won't regret it in the long run. Ideally on a travel bike have both which is what my old KLR650 has - electric for convenience, kick as backup (although unless your travelling to remote areas you can usually manage to jump start a bike from a friendly car or do a push start using locals so again a kick starter is more nice to have and not really essential).
Kick start...........just say no.......had the pain and displeasure of a kick start and now I have electric I ll never go back. I am trying to rebuild an 86 tenere back from kick to electric,if it does not work i will put the kickstart engine back in and sell as is!
Without a doubt, an electric start is far easier. I've never known a starter to give problems on an XT600E. Mine never did. Just put a good battery in and look after it. If you're worried, get a magic button.
I've owned plenty of kick start bikes as well as the infamous XR650R ankle breaker mentioned earlier.
If you can't kick your bike over in 2-3 good kicks from COLD then you have a bad set up.. PERIOD !!
My XR650 took ten kicks when I bought her, by increasing the small pilot and playing with the jet screw it boomed into life in ONE kick... ALWAYS !!
The big bikes have auto decompression levers or sometimes it's automatic. If you learn to the use it properly (its not hard to learn), it's makes a huge difference.
Obviously, kicking over a big single in a pair of trainers/walking boots is asking for a bruised shin. These bikes are designed to be kicked while wearing motocross tyre footwear. Wearing these boots makes kicking over VERY VERY easy indeed, especially on a warm engine.
Still, if I was going overland then I'd want the button for simple convenience.
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Check it out at the HU Store! Remember to use Coupon Code 'HEROES' on your order when you checkout.
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Horizons Unlimited is not a big multi-national company, just two people who love motorcycle travel and have grown what started as a hobby in 1997 into a full time job (usually 8-10 hours per day and 7 days a week) and a labour of love. To keep it going and a roof over our heads, we run events (22 this year!); we sell inspirational and informative DVDs; we have a few selected advertisers; and we make a small amount from memberships.
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knowing that you're helping to keep the motorcycle travel dream alive. Contributing Members and Gold Members do get additional features on the HUBB. Here's a list of all the Member benefits on the HUBB.