Riding a motorbike is one of the best means of transportation. It gives you freedom and openness that makes the experience memorable. However, there are instances where it is not practical to ride your bike to wherever you intend to go. Flat tires, breakdowns and interstate moves may mean that you need to transport your motorbike to your desired destination.
So how do you transport your motorbike to ensure that it reaches safely?
1. Loading Your Motorbike
Regardless of whether you intend to use a trailer, truck or van, there are essential equipment that will aid you in safe loading and transportation of your motorbike. But first, you need to strategically position your van or trailer to make loading easy.
• Motorbike ramp – Secure the loading ramp to the trailer or truck with a tie-down to prevent it from falling off. Motorcycles can be bulky, that’s why professional motorcycle transport in UK uses ramps that will withstand the weight of the bike. See to it that the ramp lies evenly on the surface and its rubber end rests on the tailgate of the trailer. This will ensure the bike will not move unpredictably when pushing it.
• Ratchet strap – Most loading ramps have hooks to secure them to the trailer. Without these straps, the ramp can slide backward and fall off the trailer when you push a bike on it. The ratchet straps will hold the ramp firmly in place to enable you to push the bike into the trailer.
• Put your bike in neutral – If your motorbike is in gear, you should shift it back to neutral to roll it up the ramp as explained here.
• Seek help from a friend – Pushing a motorbike up the ramp alone increases the chances of the motorbike falling. This could damage the bike and hurt you. The safest way to load the bike is by having two people sharing the pushing duties as one of them steers.
Once the bike is in, you can drop the side stand to prevent the bike from falling when you let go.
2. Securing The Motorbike
Once the bike is inside the van, it needs to be properly secured to prevent it from falling over or moving about while in transit. Such movements can damage it or any other fragile things that could be close to it.
Make sure you have ratchet straps with at least “one soft loop” to prevent damaging that will result from rubbing on painted components of the bike. It is not advisable to run the soft loop on wheels that have spokes as the tension may damage them. You can also opt to use wheel chocks to prevent putting too much pressure on the ratchet straps in case the bike rocks backward and forward when in transit.
Whether you decide to put your motorbike in the middle of the truck or lean it against the side of your truck, you should ensure that it is tightly strapped down to prevent it from wobbling or falling over. You can do this by applying the front brakes whenever possible by using a string or elastic band. The front suspension can also be compressed to lower the height of the motorbike.
3. Transport Your Motorbike
Once the motorbike has been loaded and firmly secured, you are free to smoothly move your motorbike to your preferred destination without the fear of damaging it. You can as well contact professional companies that will help to load, secure and move your motorbike.
4. Unloading Your Motorbike
Unloading your motorbike is pretty much the opposite of loading it. In this case, you need to be ready for the bike to thrust to one side as soon as you release the tie-down on the other side. When you are backing down the bike, it is not easy to see where you are stepping, hence, it may be even harder to stop and go back up if things go off the mark. It is therefore important to have someone who will guide you as you move down. Hold the bike firmly as you control the front brakes.
If you decide to transport your motorbike either by truck, van or trailer, make sure it is properly secured to prevent any damage. The importance of the correct tie-downs cannot be overstated. Sometimes the drop off point is far from your location and it is prudent to take gas and keys with you when picking it. Check for any damages before you take a bike off and should there be complaints; file them immediately in the driver’s presence whenever possible.