Over the years, technology has grown by leaps and bounds. This has made a significant impact in the world of motorcycling. With the advent of modern technologies, the perception of motorcycles being absolute death machines has changed by quite an extent. Not only safety, the cool quotient of motorcycles have also gone up. Here are some of the best accessories which not only look cool, but are practical as well. Bolt Charger: Bolt is a versatile all-weather resistant mobile phone charger designed specifically for motorcycles. It also comes with a water resistant cover to keep your phone while charged. Brilliant, right? The wires can be connected to the battery terminals and the other end has a clamp which can be attached to the handlebar using nuts and bolts. The Bolt Charger is plugged in and then the phone is connected to the charger. PC: Flipkart
Here's a video on how to install it:
In case you're parking the bike, you can simply unplug the charger and take it with you. Additionally, the bolt pocket can be strapped to the tank, doubling up even as a GPS holder! Bolt comes with a one year free replacement warranty. The energy efficient circuitry and smart circuit protection system ensures there is no harm to our phone. The Bolt is quite affordable at INR 1,699. It is available online in Flipkart. Bolt also comes with an app called "Bolt Riders app" which is bike tracking app and also provides lifetime updates for free. Eclipse by Summer Mount Upp: The Eclipse is essentially a handle bar-end day time running lights (DRL). The white colour acts as the DRL whereas the Amber colour act as an indicator. It is mounted where the bar-end weights are. The wiring is linked to the normal indicator switches. The Eclipse is useful to alert fellow car drivers/ bikers, especially at night and also looks pretty cool! Pretty much like tron, right?
PC: Summer Mount Upp The eclipse comes with a one year warranty and is priced at INR 2,400. It can be bought here. Lightmode Helmet Lighting System: Often helmets are bought in dark colours with various cool patterns. What people don't realise is that helmets are supposed to be brightly coloured so that it doesn't compromise on visibility. Lightmodehelmets.com has come up with a novel way to literally “Light up” your helmet with adhesive LED lighting system. Looks ultra cool, if you ask me.
Pretty sexy, right?
First, mark the light pattern on your helmet with a rope and tapes.
Then remove the rope and follow the pathway with the Electroluminescent (EL) wire and glue it up.
Connect the EL wire to the controller and glue the controller to the side of the helmet.
The controller is powered by two AA size batteries and lasts up to 13 hours of illumination.
Here's the installation video:
You can buy this product here. You can also pick up some more cool biking accessories HERE
That Bolt Charger for bikes is really cool. konarktyagi had got one during some event some time back. We were trying to fix it on one of the bikes a couple of weeks ago. The installation is fairly simple and since the charger's got a clamp that you can attach to the handlebar, it is very convenient as well. Not a fan of those Eclipse bar-end lights though. I think they can be quite distracting not only for the rider but for other road users as well. As for the Lightmode helmet lightning strip, those are damn cool. Do you know how much they are priced at?
NikilSJ The prices for the Lightmode helmet lighting system starts at around INR 2,400. I think the bar-end lights will be useful for other road users to figure out the width of the bike, especially at night. I don't think they would be distracting if they're not flashing/ flickering.
Nice accessories Praveen. But do you know any place where one can get a Bluetooth helmet kit? Something that will easily mount inside of your helmet and be able to pair with either a two-way radio or a cellphone via Bluetooth. The only thing I've come across so far is this "Sena" Bluetooth kit for helmets, priced at about Rs. 5000. It seems a bit clunky though. Any other ideas?
Roshun Thanks. You could check out Scala Rider bluetooth system. Priced at around 270 Euros, it sure is expensive, but offers good range of up to one mile. I think you can get an imported one from stores like Adventure18 or Riderz Planet. Alternatively, you can also check out Bluetooth enabled helmets like this. Or, you can use a pair of Bluetooth Earphones and go the jugaad way!
Praveen the bar-end lights on the picture you posted emits a blue light. Generally, blue light is the most distracting kind as they penetrate all the way to the retina. Studies have shown that blue light can damage light-sensitive cells in the retina. That's the reason why your eye hurts at night when you see bikes with those annoying blinking blue LED lights. If it was a faint orange or a red, then I wouldn't have a problem with the bar-end mirrors.
Roshun So I just checked out Spartanprogear website. For INR 9,500, this one fits the bill: The Sena SMH 5 bluetooth headset and intercom for motorcycle riders. It offers 8 hours talktime, 400 meters range in open terrain, noise control, integrated audio booster and even music sharing. Check it out:
Souradip_Bhattacharya You could check out Studds Cruiser Box. The payload capacity is 15 kg, and the storage volume is 23 liters. It also comes with a six lever locking system. It is priced at INR 1,050 in Studds official website. But in Snapdeal the price is INR 1,700. It is better you go to a motorcycle accessories shop, have a look at the product and then buy one. Another, cheaper option is the Vault box from Studds. It has a smaller capacity of only 8 liters with a payload capacity of 6 kg. If you're not looking for a permanent side-box, you could check Viaterra Claw. It is really versatile and is suitable for almost all motorcycle models. The Claw is priced at INR 2,900 The fit and finish is very good and is totally worth the price. You can mount it on your motorcycle, fill it up with stuff and after you're done with riding, you can take it off and carry it like a luggage. It also comes with a rain cover. This one's perfect for touring.
For those of you who have large heavy bikes or superbikes or want to just be able to easily park your bike in a tight spot, here is a pretty innovative biking accessory. It's called the Bike Glide and is a wheeled platform which helps you move your bike around in tight spaces, making it easy to park at home or even for use in a showroom or service station where bikes have to be constantly shifted around. See this video of the Bike Glide in action:
There are two models of this Bike Glide offered by a company called Grand Pit Stop. The universal model costs Rs. 13,500 and can carry almost all superbikes and heavy cruisers. You get a smaller, more compact model for sportsters, priced at Rs. 8,800. It can carry bikes up to 370 Kg in weight. It can handle bikes with low ground clearance easily. The gap between the stand platform (side stand) and wheel platform (for rear wheel) can be adjusted from 73 cm to 107 cm to fit a range of bikes. The maximum width of rear tyre the platform can hold is 260 mm (which is pretty wide). The platform can be locked to a wall. The platform consists of 9 castor wheels helping it move in any direction. This is also useful for reversing out or sliding out heavy bikes from tight spots.
Roshun This would be more helpful for workshops and showrooms than individual owners. I have seen mechanics use some oil on the workshop floor to slide the vehicle this way,but this is far more convenient,safe and controllable. This reminds me of my friend, who used to do burnouts on his RE Bullet, to make the rear wheel align and for him to be able to park straight between two bikes. It used to make a hell lot of noise when he used to do the maneuver with his gold star silencer in the basement parking. However, for an individual user, it would only help if the home parking is tight. Its too big to carry around so not practical in outside parking spaces.
Roshun Watching that video was oddly satisfying, considering the effort (read- struggle) i take to park my Thunderbird properly! This is actually a brilliant contraption as it takes up the load and we only need to use our effort to change the directions. But as Arjun said, it is not that practical and would be ideal for home/ service center use. And burnout parking? That is actually cool! But don't the cars sound alarm because of the noise? i remember one of my friend has a Wildboar silencer on his Thunderbird and the bass is so high that it used to trigger car alarms every time he parks in the basement lol.
Praveen On this topic, do you have any suggestions for low cost phone mounts for the R15? It was really easy to find a decent one for throwaway prices for the Thunderbird and Gladiator but nothing for the R15. For now I have just drilled a hole through the windscreen, placed the one I used on the Thunderbird at a different angle, added two washers and made a jugaad until I find something better.
The phone I use on it is much smaller than this one. The only problem here is that the angle is a bit sharp for when you are not crouching.
Akshay_Sharma For R15, I think the only proper cylindrical surface is the rear-view mirror. I stumbled upon this set-up. Do check it out. This mount is fitted to the base of the ORVM. But I am not sure about the efficacy of this thing. But then, even if you mount one, it is prone to vibrations and then you also have this paranoia of phone falling off at speed. If your sole purpose of using a mobile mount is to navigate, then I would suggest you use a Bluetooth earphone and listen to the voice navigation. This is fairly efficient and works in most of the cases. You only have to keep an ear for the voice guidance and that's pretty much it. I have been using this jugaad for almost four months now. It works fine in most places except really narrow side streets like the ones in Maidan Garhi, IGNOU side. Over there, the streets are so narrow (they're just a car's width) and there are so many turns that it becomes difficult which turn the GPS-lady wanted me to take. I use Sony SBH 20 for my navigation purposes. Check out this link to know more. I have a mobile phone holder with a zippered case and it fits perfectly in my Thunderbird, but the thing is, the phone tends to heat up. This happens because, the phone's display, data, and GPS are always switched on and another reason is due to sunlight. Since the phone is enclosed within the case, the heat does not escape efficiently and at one point, my phone's battery temperature reached 60-degree celsius! I have no idea how it stayed without exploding! The major drawback of these holders is that they are prone to thefts unless they are secured with a fool-proof screw. The one I have has a simple screw with a plastic head. So, it is easy to just unscrew it without a screwdriver it away. So, I wouldn't recommend going for a motorcycle phone mount. Another jugaadwhich recently struck me is to buy a gym armband for holding smartphones. Put the phone inside it and wear it on your forearm, over the riding jacket. It stays secure and you won't have the problem of vibrations because your hand absorbs most of it and more importantly, it is easily visible and versatile! And, it is cheap too! Brilliant eh? I've got to try this out on my next motorcycle trip.
Akshay_Sharma My suggestion would not be very cost effective, but would be useful if you are also looking for a smart watch. I use an Android Wear based smart watch. Once you set the navigation on your phone the same is displayed on your watch too. The watch buzzes before every turn and this with voice over headphones has helped me a lot. In India Moto 360 and Hauwei watch are available but they are priced on the higher side. I had got an LG Urbane from the US and got it for 120$ during an offer. Even though the smart watch is not a great thing in terms of features, its very helpful while riding. When phone calls come I can check the caller and decide if I want to ignore it or pullover. Navigation is one of the best things I found on the smart watch.
Praveen This was something I really liked about Thunderbird, handlebar real estate. No matter what kind of phone mount you have, you will be able to find a suitable spot. Btw the heating issues are real, even without the closed pocket. I was using the same mount (photos in last post) on the Thunderbird and while it is an open one, GPS+data+sun made sure that the phone will be scaringly hot in an hour or so. The armband on forearm idea is good. As the hands will be resting on handlebars, it shouldn't feel heavy either until you take your hands off the handlebar (and even that should be negligible with the weight of jacket). I am certainly going to try this out. Arjun The smartwatch idea is really tempting and even considered getting the Moto 360 from US few months back, not for the navigation but just to have that piece of gadget which was touted to be the next big thing after smartphone. However, I couldn't see much value and decided that I should probably wait for the manufacturers (and app developers) to find more use cases before putting my money on one.