Maximizing Motorcycle Performance

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If you dream of riding down miles of asphalt and searching for open spaces, you understand that riding a motorcycle is about more than getting from point A to B, but few truly understand or comprehend what makes motorcycle enthusiasts so passionate about the sight of polished chrome or the different types of cylinder heads.

At a certain point, most bikers realize that there is only so much personality they can leverage out of a factory-ready machine. To individualize their biking experience, and get their machine running like it should, they need to truly customize their bike. This can be an ongoing process—making small upgrades and renovations here and there until your bike performs exceeds factory limits, but once you are roaring on the road, you will realize there is nothing more exciting!

Here are five essential customizable components that will get your bike roaring at its optimal level.

1. Air filters

Did you know that motorcycle manufacturers are forced to comply with a number of emission standards? The bike you get from the factory will likely come equipped with some parts that can inhibit a bike’s performance and true potential, but don’t let that stop you!

To remedy this, one of the first upgrades you should consider is to replace your air intake filter. Motorcycle engines, like other four-stroke engines, operate by pumping air in and circulating it back out. A high-flow air filter will help more air cycle through the engine, allowing the carburetors to add more gas, and more power, to your ride. Zoom zoom!

2. Fuel Tuners

Now what? As your new air filter facilitates an increased amount of air through your engine, the fuel-to-air ratio will require appropriate maintenance as well. With too much air, your engine will run hot, pop and cause your bike to run lean (too much air and not enough fuel), which can result in significant damage to some engine components. This will ultimately decrease your bike’s performance.

To avoid this, you can install a fuel tuner designed to match your high-flow air filter, which is designed to keep your air-to-fuel ratio stable. Bottom line: If you buy a new air filter, you need to pair it with an optimized fuel tuner.

3. Cams

Looking for power? If you want to go a step further and add as much as ten horsepower to your ride, get inside the engine and substitute the cams. The type of bike you ride and your riding style will determine what kind of cams you should use. Make sure to do your research and consider what RPM range you normally ride in, and what you specially want the new cams to improve. For example, do you want more power while cruising or, if you race, do you want to get the most out of your bike at high RPMs?

Once you become more comfortable in your riding style and harness a deeper understanding of what you are seeking to get out of your bike, you can begin to develop an even more powerful machine.

4. Adjustable Suspension

Most people believe that suspension is in place for increased comfort, but if you have yet to experience the difference that an adjustable suspension system can make in how your bike performs, you are missing out on some serious.

Did you know that installing an advanced suspension system that adjusts to your weight and riding style by dampening and controlling the compression rate will create a customized, more responsive feel?

5. New Wheels

An important feature that factory bikes skimp on the most are the wheels. While it’s easy to make cheap, heavy wheels look great, and many manufacturers take advantage of this, wheels are a crucial component to getting the most out of your biking experience.

For a quick upgrade, swap out those wheels and invest in some lightweight rims. In fact, you should probably do this before you invest in a new suspension system. No matter how advanced your suspension system, if you have factory-installed wheels, you won’t be able to enjoy ideal performance benefits.

There are plenty of other ways to upgrade your bike’s performance, of course. A lot the methods mentioned, as well as larger engine overhauls like carburetors and exhaust work, can also affect how your bike looks. Don’t limit your ride!

Finding the right balance between performance and design can be a thrilling adventure. To find parts like exhaust pipes or cylinder covers, check out salvage or used-motorcycle auctions like or

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