Scroll to Top

The Rider's Digest

The Rider's Digest Motorcycle Magazine

advert

Two Wheels to the End of the World – Alpine Argentina

on Sun, May 5, 2013 | By

The border crossing between Chile and Argentina at Portezulo de Puyehue is the last paved crossing for several thousand kilometres. As the border is high in the mountains the arrangement the authorities from each country have made are quite clever. Rather than having two border crossings back to back on the top of a snow capped mountain the Chileans take one side and the Argentineans...

Jan’s Off Road Experience

Jan and Jhn, holding their helmets, standinfg in front of all the bikes, next to a barn.
on Sun, May 5, 2013 | By

In April 2012 I finished work to set up DragonMotoTours with my husband, Geraint, and I received a voucher for the Yamaha Off-Road Experience, (Y.O.R.E), as a leaving present from my colleagues. I was both thrilled and terrified at the same time! One of my pet hates when road riding is coming across gravel or entering an uneven car park and Geraint has often said that doing...

BREAKOUT

on Sun, May 5, 2013 | By

It’s rush hour in downtown Marseilles and I’m filtering through the seafront traffic on Harley Davidson’s new Breakout. It’s been an interesting day and one that challenges my preconceptions as to what makes a good bike. The Breakout is new for 2013, although it was released as a CVO motorcycle last year in very limited numbers from the American motorcycle giant’s...

ACAB (or are they?)

on Sun, May 5, 2013 | By

I caught a flash of orange ahead and gave my GT250 a little extra, shaving a few more percentage points off my margin of error as I rode west along Bishopsgate. I caught the other Mercury bike as we crossed London Wall, which was when the rider spotted me and stopped poodling about. We swung right, cutting straight across the flow of traffic without a pause and screamed down...

Meet and greet the police (the painless way)

on Sun, May 5, 2013 | By

When PC Graham Pierce rang me to talk about writing a regular column in the Digest, I saw the appeal immediately. As laudable as his stated mission to cut down on motorcycling road fatalities is, I’m acutely aware that if the only interactions you ever have with traffic police are at the side of the road, after they have stopped you to point out a shortcoming in your riding,...

Ask a policeman

on Sun, May 5, 2013 | By

I’d like to start by saying I’m not a writer, a reporter, or a journalist. I’m not highly educated and I possess very few literary skills, (thank goodness for smell check). I can however offer a variety of, what I would call, interesting skills and takes on life. Having left school with reasonable qualifications, I started my police career in South East London before...

Riding Out The Recession

on Sun, May 5, 2013 | By

Ed Ricketts, the real-life marine biologist immortalised as Doc in Steinbeck’s Cannery Row, evolved a theory of how everything is connected in the natural world. He observed that the sea creatures he studied were influenced in their form and life by the whole of their environment, which could be by as distant an object as the moon (tides, light etc.) or as minimal as tiny...

Secondary Effects

on Sun, May 5, 2013 | By

  I read other motorcycle magazines somewhat regularly. I’m more interested in their letters-to-the-editor than I am in their latest shoot-out between six identical motorcycles. I don’t care about elite journalists’ opinions on motorcycles I’ll never own, but the letters give me some insight into what other motorcyclists are thinking about. A while back, Cycle...

The first sunny ride of the year

A beach at sunset, with the saturated sand just emerging from the water, lit by the sun's glow.
on Sun, May 5, 2013 | By

 It’s been a funny old winter. I started out determined to ride right through as I have done in previous years. Anything aside from snow will see me out on the road, though sometimes only necessity will drag me out of the warm. The gods of two wheels, however, had other ideas for me this year. First of all, at the end of December, I blew the head gasket on my Honda CBF600...

Funky Mopeds

A burgandy FS1-E and a electric green Honda SS50, next to each other, viewed from the side.
on Sun, May 5, 2013 | By

  There was a time, many years ago, when some of the contributors to this august journal had long hair, pimply faces and flares, when there existed a sub culture of the much loved ‘powered two wheeler’. It was called a ‘moped’ – and was generally know as a wheezy overgrown bicycle with a puny little single speed 49cc stink wheel engine and a pair of all but...

The Ace Cafe, Café Racers, and Racing Aces – Book Review pt. 1

on Sun, May 5, 2013 | By

It is doubtful that there is anyone involved in the world of British motorcycling whose life is not touched directly or indirectly by the Ace Cafe. A visit here, an experience there, and it’s another tale to tell, adding to the legend (if not the reality) of the Ace. That’s true even for those of us living in the States. In my case it happened a couple of years ago when...

The Ace Cafe, Café Racers, and Racing Aces – Book Review pt. 2

view of a crowd of bikes outside the Ace Cafe London
on Sun, May 5, 2013 | By

The world of the contemporary café racer in the United States is more properly addressed in Seate’s Café Racer: the Motorcycle (2008). For the past five or so years Seate has made a cottage industry out of it, not only with the publication of this book, but also a bimonthly magazine, Café Racer; a documentary, Café Society (2010); and a TV series, Café Racer, which is...

From the Editor ~ 177

on Fri, Apr 26, 2013 | By

As many of you will be aware, I tend to leave me editorial until the very last thing. This is partially to lend it a degree of immediacy in recognition of the up to the minute nature of the medium it will be appearing on – i.e. the Internet – but mostly it’s because I’m a bit of a space cadet who’s always had a tendency to leave everything until the last minute. If...

Riders’ Lives – Ed March

on Fri, Apr 26, 2013 | By

1.What was your first motorcycling experience? Rebuilding a Honda H100 and then teaching myself to ride it in a field. I still have it too. 2.What is your current bike? The world’s greatest motorcycle – Honda C90. 3.What bike would you most like to ride/own? Every C90 (If the question read “what would you most like to ride:” A woman). 4.What was your hairiest moment...

Six and the City

on Fri, Apr 26, 2013 | By

Monday  It’s March and I’ve now been wearing my heated gloves for what feels like forever (I was tempted to say, since November but that technically wouldn’t be correct ‘cos there was that couple of months I didn’t ride). Don’t get me wrong, I totally love my heated gloves – there is no way I could ride during the winter months without them,...

Paddy’s Perspective

on Fri, Apr 26, 2013 | By

Commercial interests? It’s often the case that legislation emanating from Europe appears to have a commercial interest. You may remember that compulsory ABS on all bikes and scooters was something a German MEP called for, because the Bosch factory that made ABS was in her constituency. She was one of the MEPs on the committee (IMCO) that was steering the Euro Parliament...

The Boy Biker – sees the light

on Fri, Apr 26, 2013 | By Dave

A recent excursion led me down a path, which having emerged the other side unscathed, gave me a lot to think about, biking and otherwise. Last month I was Billy Big Bollocks, no theory test but a lovely ride and king of my little jungle. This month, I set off a lot later, was a lot less prepared and ended up, to be honest, scared and alone! I hop on the bike for a weekend of...

Nuts & Bolts

on Fri, Apr 26, 2013 | By

Going faster with cheap gin.  Time passes by incredibly quickly, especially once one reaches a certain age. Actually, scrub that. Time is inordinately and mind numbingly regular in its passing. It’s only those of us possessed with human brains that perceive the passing of time to be anything other than a steady affair, like that which you might have with an old lover or...

Two Wheels To the End Of The World: Chile – The end of the Highway

on Fri, Apr 26, 2013 | By

The border crossing from Bolivia to Chile is simple, efficient and ever so civilised. The staff seem to be under little or no pressure and as soon as they realise where we’re from they all seem only too happy to speak English to us. The import papers for the bikes are processed and we get our tourist stamps in our passports. All without any fuss. Best of all, once we...

An upbeat farewell: in a motorcycle hearse…

on Fri, Apr 26, 2013 | By

Have you ever wondered what sort of people make their final journey in a motorcycle hearse? Before I first spoke to the Reverend Paul Sinclair, way back in 2006, I’d always kind of assumed that most of his punters would have been motorcyclists who’d come to a sticky end on their machines; which only goes to show how the tabloid, “Shock horror, death and destruction!”...

Playing Blackjack

on Fri, Apr 26, 2013 | By

Back in the 1960s, I had an Isetta ‘bubble car’ made by BMW, which was great fun but I wrote it off on black ice, so I moved on to a BSA 500 single motorcycle and sidecar and various motorbikes. However, with a family, I then had to add another wheel and spent several years driving in conventional cars. Fast-forward some years, family grown, I’m divorced and back on...

Biker Down

on Fri, Apr 26, 2013 | By

“Kevin, I’ve got an idea and I’d like hear your thoughts about it” That was how I was first introduced by Jim Sanderson to what was soon to become ‘Biker Down’, the free accident management, first aid and collision avoidance course. Let’s start by telling you who we are. Jim is a fire fighter with Kent Fire and Rescue Service based...

Paul Sample: The Interview ‘Everyone chooses their own destiny; mine’s a bike’ – OGRI

on Fri, Apr 26, 2013 | By Dave

Whitchurch is one of those places that encapsulates the essence of Englishness with all its half-timbered houses, red bricks and stone-built churches. It’s a theme I want to explore with Paul Sample as his work seems to me quintessentially British, if not English. Having found my way surprisingly easily to a car park nearby I am soon knocking on the door of a solid, brick-built...