Year-round motorcycling | Sorted

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The ardent motorcyclist won’t let a bit of rain or snow stop him (or her) getting out on his (or her) bike. But plenty of us will. As well as being a bit cold and miserable, the chances of throwing your pride and joy into a ditch certainly increase. And on most roads, you don’t even have to lob it to ruin your lovely, shiny bike; the road slime and grit salt will do it for you. So how do you do year-round motorcycling, without destroying your number one bike? It’s simple, and last week a mate popped round to tell me exactly how he’s doing it.

As usual, he wandered into the house (without knocking, also as usual) and helped himself to a cup of tea. Whilst the kettle was boiling, he pointed out the window at a (slightly ropey looking) 20 year old R6 and said “What do you think?”. I wasn’t sure what he was getting at, because he normally rides a Fireblade (2019). Had he brought a friend with him that was too polite to wander into a strangers house unannounced? I looked at him confused and then he told me it was his new bike.

“You’ve traded a nearly new Fireblade in for a 20 year old R6?” I said

“No!” He replied. “I’ve simply added a 20 year old R6 to the fleet. I now have a fleet of two.”


After giving me a condescending chuckle, he explained to me that motorcycles don’t do very well on UK roads during winter. Especially the posh ones, he said. But he loves being on two wheels, and hates the idea of not being able to get out on the bike for four to six months at a time.

Nook and cranny

So rather than fill every nook and cranny of his still-worth-a-fortune-superbike with gunge and salt, he’s decided to ‘invest’ £1,500 on a winter hack. He told me that the R6 that he spent £1,500 on, will be worth £1,500 “as long as he’s got a hole in his arse”. And he might be right.

When he sells it in March, for the same as what he’s just paid for it, he’ll have had a winter of riding without it costing him anything. And as an added bonus, his ‘Blade will be waiting for him at the other end of the bad weather, un-molested, un-wintered and raring to go.

He also said that spending some time on an older bike has made him realise how much he loves his modern weapon. And that he expects a winter on an old R6 will only make him love his Fireblade even more.

So if you’ve got a grand or two burning a hole in your bank account, and you’re desperate to keep riding over winter, why not make an investment. Why not swap some cash for an old bike; you can always swap it back again…


3 Responses

  1. All I’m getting from this is your mate is smart.

    I need to go and get a scooter because the bike I originally bought as a winter hack (2002 ZX-6R) was of course serviced, then stripped down and rebuilt with track fairings and no lights because I didn’t have a track bike. Now I need another winter hack and this time a 125 cheapy scoot is what’s getting bought. Saving my 790R from the worse of winter (Also 80/20) tyres are not great in the very cold crappy, rainy, salt covered road conditions we get for the next 4 odd months. AFC50 and put away till spring possibly..

  2. Been doing this since 1988
    When I got new TZR 250
    Bought a 125 lc for winter riding to work
    Now have seven bikes but my SV 650
    Is used every day and is bulletproof

  3. After ruining a Yamaha XSR 700 and a 790 Duke in this way. I want to do the same thing as your mate with the S-thou. How shit but good can you go with a winter hack? Next article I need a top 10 winter hacks hit list!

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