The Basics of Motorcycles
Motorcycles are a great way to get around, and they’re a lot of fun to ride. However, they can also be dangerous if you don’t take the proper precautions and understand how to operate them. It’s important to conduct regular maintenance checks to make sure that the basics are working properly, like the horn and mirrors, before you hit the road.
A motorcycle is a two-wheeled motor vehicle steered by handlebars from a saddle-style seat. It’s powered by a gasoline engine, which converts the reciprocating motion of its pistons into rotary motion that propels the rear wheel and moves the motorcycle forward. The front wheel steers by means of fork tubes on each side, which also house the motorcycle’s suspension components, while two hand levers enable the rider to operate the clutch and front brake.
The first modern motorcycles were created in the late 19th century. Gottlieb Daimler and Wilhelm Maybach designed a prototype with a petrol (petroleum) engine in 1885, which they called the Reitwagen. It was unlike the safety bicycles or boneshaker bikes of that era, but was similar to automobiles in that it had a rigid frame with no steering axis tilt and used a front fork offset.
The 1960s saw the rise of sports motorcycles, which featured racing-style handling and high-powered engines. In the 1980s, companies introduced electronic fuel injection systems. The 1990s saw a recovery in the motorcycle industry as the Baby Boomers dived back into riding. The current motorcycle market is driven by sport, adventure and classic motorcycles.