A motorcycle cover! One of the most useful accessories us bike owners will ever own!
There are loads of reasons to keep your motorcycle under a cover – no matter where you keep your bike. We have a huge range of bike covers to suit all budgets here at Demon Tweeks, but here are a few things to look out for and few examples of covers….
A motorcycle cover in a garage is still needed
If you are one of the lucky ones that has a garage or a shed to keep your bike in, then a simple indoor style dust cover is still handy, as it protects your bike from dust or dirt in the atmosphere which can scratch your paint work. They also protect your bike from knocks and scuffs off your clothes, jackets, extensions, tools etc if you’re in and out of the garage etc…
Indoor motorbike covers are versatile
If you are in the market for an indoor cover then there’s not too many factors to consider, but ideally you still want a cover that is breathable and/or vented to avoid condensation…. such as Bike-It’s indoor cover. A soft interior or lining to the cover will help prevent any residual dust scratching or marking your paint work. Lock holes are handy, so you can chain your bike to your ground anchor, and a good fitting cover is also essential for indoors, like the Oxford indoor cover, which has a elasticated bottom and a belly strap. If it’s too big or baggy on the bike, you will be constantly catching or tugging at the cover when you are passing the bike – increasing the chance of ripping the cover or getting caught in it… A stretch cover will also work well for this and provide a snug fit.
Deter thieves with an outside cover
If you don’t have a garage or a shed to store your motorcycle and have to keep it outside, then an outdoor cover is a must. Not only will a cover keep the wind, rain and elements off your motorbike (ready for your next ride), but it will also keep prying eyes off of your motorcycle too! To an opportunistic thief, he won’t know whether it’s a winter commuter hack, or a £20k sports bike. A cover not only hides its identity, but it also adds an extra layer of complication for the opportunistic ones. Plus, if you have taken the time to put a cover on it, then there is the possibility that you have also fitted a disc lock or security chain etc. A good cover and lock will deter almost all suspecting thieves.
Why are they worth it?
An external motorbike cover takes a lot more stick than you would think! It has to be able to cope with the elements, as well as being kind to your bike’s finish. Most quality outdoor covers are constructed from heavy duty material to avoid tears and holes, with double stitched, taped seams for maximum rain protection, such as the cover from Warrior. This tough outer shell protects from knocks, but it’s worth the extra getting a cover that has a soft heat resistant lining – not only will this help prevent your paintwork, but avoid the cover melting on your hot exhaust, as most bikes that are left outdoors will be covered as soon as the rider gets home.
Strategically placed holes for chains are a must, such as Oxford’s Rainex cover, this is so you can secure your motorbike – as well as ventilation holes to help combat condensation and moisture build up. Adjustable toggle cords or an elasticated bottom help keep the cover snug and a cover with a belly pan strap is even better as it stops the cover flapping around in the wind.
What size motorcycle cover do I need?
To determine the size of bike cover you need, you’ll generally want to consider the dimensions of your motorcycle. There are a few things you can do to make sure you find the correct size:
- Measure the length: Knowing the length of your bike from the front wheel to the back wheel is key as this will give you the approximate size needed to cover the entire motorcycle.
- Measure the height: Assess the height of your bike from the ground to the highest point, which is usually the handlebars or the top of the seat. Make sure to include any accessories that protrude above the frame, such as a bike rack or basket.
- Measure the width: Understanding how wide your bike is will mean you don’t pick one which is long enough but not wide enough. This is typically the handlebars.
- Consider the type of bike: If you have a specialty bike, such as a mountain bike with wide handlebars or a long-wheelbase recumbent bike, you may need to choose a cover specifically designed for those types of motorcycles.
- Check the cover size: Once you have the measurements, refer to the product description or packaging of the bike cover you are considering purchasing. The cover should provide a size range or specific measurements it can accommodate. Compare your motorbike’s dimensions to the cover’s specifications to ensure a proper fit.
It’s worth noting that some motorcycle covers are designed to be more universal and can accommodate a range of sizes. In such cases, you can select a cover that corresponds to the general size of your bike, such as small, medium, or large.
Motorbike cover alternatives
There are a couple of other options to a bike cover (both indoor and outdoor). If you need something a little sturdier than an outdoor cover and have the space, then a folding motorcycle shelter, such as the Bike-It Armadillo Bike Shelter is another great option! Constructed from 600D waterproof material over a sturdy metal frame, these offer your motorbike protection from the elements without any contact with your bike, so no worry about scratched paint, hot exhausts, or worrying about draw cords and belly straps to secure your cover – simply ride your motorcycle in and close the shelter over the top! They can be permanently attached to the floor and have optional locking points to secure the frame closed with a padlock.
If you have a large garage, shed, or plenty of indoor space, then there is another option for keeping your bike dry and dust free! Perfect for classic bikes or show bikes – a vac bag or bike bubble could be the way to go!
The Vac-Bag motorcycle dry storage system is an ingenious yet cost effective way to keep your bike dry if it is being stored over the winter. Your bike goes into the bag, along with a drisorb pack, then the air is sucked out and the bag tied up! Any moisture in the atmosphere or on the bike is absorbed, keeping it dust free and dry till you need it next!
Cover accessibility is important
As good an idea as it is, if you want your bike to be regularly accessible, then a motorcycle bubble is the better option, although these can be a little more expensive. The Podtec Bikepod or Carcoon Bikebubble are the ultimate in indoor storage! You simply ride your bike onto the base, zip the bubble over it and an electric fan inflates the bubble, keeping your bike dry and dust free until you need it next. The only downside is that it needs to have a permanent mains connection nearby to operate. The fans take approx. 0.5kWh of electricity a day, so they are cheap to run and you can have your bike in or out of them in around 10 minutes!
If you are aiming to put your bike away for a considerable length of time, make sure you have a good battery charger, as there’s nothing worse than seeing the weather is good only to find out your bike wont start due to a flat battery. Or maybe you are storing your bike to perform some maintenance, if so you’ll need the right products for the job.
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