Feb 2, 2007

I, Bike Maker: The Not To Do List

If I were a bike manufacturer, these are the things I wouldn't do.
  • Choke on the carb
    No matter how well fuelled the bike is, when I need to use the choke, I don't want to crick my back reaching down and hunting for a small tab hidden on top of the carb. And I wouldn't wish it on my customers either.

  • Drum front brakes
    Unsafe. At all speeds.

  • Bright low fuel light
    Stand on the street corner and check out the new Pulsars. My empirical observation says 80 per cent brap around with the light steadily glowing... heh heh. I'd put the light in, remove the fuel guage, but leave it bright enough to say please, not or else.

  • No engine kill switch
    The 2 bucks saved in not putting the engine kill switch is just mindless. Utter nonsense.

  • No bar ends
    This is another cost saving shortcut. Most evident on bikes like the Shine. Which do vibrate enough to be noticeable and/or uncomfortable.

  • Hide the seat release
    A simple turn-key is the best way to do it. No under the side panel and look for a small loop of wire for me, please.

  • Hard mounted footpegs
    I wouldn't wish fixed footpegs on any serious rider. They're a hazard to anyone with skill. Which is kind of upside down, no? Folding footpegs. Always.

  • Completely removable gas tank caps
    Are a bloody pain at the pump. Hinged ones for me, always.

  • Straight brake and clutch levers
    At our price levels, reach-adjustable levers are too much to expected. Doglegs are not an unreasonable demand.

  • Sidestand that open out exactly under the footpegs
    If you are wearing half-decent riding kit, you can't reach down to flip them up while seated on the bike. This bugs me no end, because I'm always in riding boots and pants. The armous over the knee/shin and the boots shin plate ensures that I can never reach the sidestand. The RD had a nice flickable outrigger...

  • Indicators without push-cancel
    They make so much sense that I'd be stupid to try and solve a problem that does not exist and work around them

  • Pass switch
    I estimate that I find myself flashing my lights at pedestrians, jaywalkers, cagers et all at about three or four times per kilometer. It works ninety per cent of the time. Cost two bucks

  • One way handlebar lock
    Any bike today that comes with a lock that does either of these two things - 1) locks only on one direction (left or right) or 2) has a separate key slots for locking and ignition is not modern enough
If you were a bike manufacturer, what would you not do?

1 comment:

Hafeez said...

Amen to each and every point!