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Genuine Mikuni Components and How To Tell

By NCS April 30, 2015 No comments

Tuning carburetors correctly takes time.  When you put that kind of time, effort, and attention into something, isnt it worth making sure you are doing it right?  While there are all kinds of things we can talk about as far as tuning carbs, for now we want to make sure you are using quality components.  We strictly deal in Mikuni carburetors, and Mikuni components.  Niche Cycle Supply does not carry any third party components, or knock off carbs.  You can rest assured that if you get it from us, its a genuine Mikuni product.

How can you tell if what you bought is genuine?

Mikuni makes good stuff.  If your holding it in your hand, and it looks like junk, suspicion should rise.  Mikuni carburetors, and components often do not come in Mikuni branded packaging.  That being said, you cannot rely on the box the product arrived in.  If its a carburetor in question, the size, and actual carburetor model/series number should be on the body somewhere.  It can be faint, so look well.  Another good way to determine if the carburetor is worthy of the Mikuni name, would be the components inside.  Most aftermarket Mikuni carburetors will need to be slightly disassembled to be installed, so while you have the cap off, check the throttle slide and needle.  All tuning components manufactured by Mikuni will have the famous "square within a square" tooled into the part.  We have done our best to display an example to the left.

What if I purchased a knock off Mikuni carburetor?

There isn't much you can do about it now, but there are some things you should know.  It may claim to be a certain series, or type of carb, and it may look very close to an authentic part.  Then you go buy some jets to get it dialed in.  Wait a minute!  This carburetor is supposed to accept VM4/042 hex style main jets, whats going on?  We have seen that some of the copies do not use the same style tuning components as the genuine stuff.  We have also seen the jetting rated differently.  What would be equal to a 150 main, may have 67.5 stamped on it.  This is going to make it real tough to figure out your starting point.  You basically will have to start from scratch.

What could possibly be the actual real world difference in tuning components?

Sometimes not much.  It's the sometimes that causes problems.  The quality control at Mikuni is impeccable.  You can be sure that every 250 main, 6DH3 needle, or P4 needle jet is going to be the same.  You can be sure that when you go from a certain size jet, to another size, that its not going to give you the same, or a reverse effect.  Taking a carb off, popping it open, swapping jets can take a good amount of time.  Is it really worth the risk?  We don't think so.

But what about the savings?  Jetting can really add up!

We can't speculate what you stand to save buying third party vs. genuine Mikuni, but we highly doubt its significant.  Most of the jetting that we have seen advertised as manufactured by another company is very closely priced.  Sometimes its even more expensive.  You are gambling with your time, and frustration.  Aside from the stuff honestly advertised as thrid party, some sellers are not so straight forward.  Because of this, we wanted to do what we can to educate a little.  Off to the right is another example of the tooling marks of a real Mikuni product.

If this information isnt adequate, and you are still unsure, let us know.  We have had our hands on quite a bit of stuff, and we can help you figure it out. 

Motorcycle Safety Tips That All Riders Should Follow

By none none October 28, 2014 No comments

customizing motorcyclesMotorcycles are a great alternative mode of transportation, and they are both fun to ride and fuel efficient. One of the first things new or soon-to-be owners start to think about after their purchase is how to customize a motorcycle to make it stand out on the road. Customizing motorcycles is a fun way to make a new ride unique and flashy, and there's no doubt that custom motorcycle parts and accessories are fun to shop for. That said, there are more important things that new motorcyclists should focus on before customizing motorcycles.

As fun as motorcycles are to drive, they also pose many safety risks. Motorcyclists are hard to see, and they are not nearly as well protected as drivers of cars, SUVs and trucks. Almost 50% of motorcycle crashes in the U.S. happen as a result of a motorcycle colliding with another vehicle, according to the NHTSA. Many car drivers aren't as careful as they should be when passing motorcycles, which is all the more reason for motorcycle riders to exercise extreme caution when on the road. Some motorcycle riding safety tips that all motorcyclists should abide by include:

  1. Wear a Helmet - Only 19 states in the U.S. currently have universal helmet laws for motorcycle riders, but that doesn't mean that riders shouldn't wear one. People who don't wear helmets have a 40% greater chance of suffering fatal head injuries than those who do wear helmets, according to Consumer Reports. The skull is extremely vulnerable when exposed on the open road, and being in a collision without one almost guarantees significant brain damage, if not death. Riders should invest in a helmet approved by the Department of Transportation and wear it every time they get on their bike.

  2. Take a Safety Course - Taking a motorcycle safety course can greatly improve a rider's skills and can teach them how to improve their safety on the road. Safety courses can teach new riders the necessary techniques to protect themselves on the road, including evasive maneuvers. Aside from picking up some new safety skills, many motorcycle safety courses also lower a rider's insurance rates.

  3. Drive Defensively - Studies have shown that in many cases when motorcycles are in an accident involving another vehicle, the driver of the other vehicle is at fault. Car drivers are not always good about sharing the road with motorcycles, not to mention that motorcycles can be hard for them to see since they are much smaller. Therefore, it is even more important for motorcyclists to be alert when driving around cars. Riders should lookout for cars changing lanes, objects in the middle of the road, and they should avoid getting too close to cars if they can avoid it.

While customizing motorcycles is a fun way to make a motorcycle stand out, following motorcycle safety tips should always be a priority. Investing in a safety course and protective gear like helmets, gloves and jackets could be the difference between life and death out on the road. Motorcyclists should never underestimate the importance of rider safety.

Would You Buy A Motorcycle Designed By Keanu Reeves?

By none none September 29, 2014 No comments

custom motorcycle accessoriesIt happens to the best of us. You're watching re-runs of House, M.D. again, and you're still a shade jealous of Hugh Laurie's abrasive but funny and charming character -- but, most of all, you're jealous of his motorcycle and all of its bells and whistles. The good news is that it's a great time to be a biker -- and new technologies and the nation's increasing interest in motorcycles means there are more bikes and custom motorcycle accessories to choose from than ever before.

Whether You're A Fan Of The Matrix Or Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure, You May Want To Pay Attention
That's right. World-famous American actor Keanu Reeves is trying his hand at designing motorcycles -- and the debut of his very first custom made motorcycles are pretty promising. 

"The motor breathes through a unique downdraft induction system that channels air from intakes next to the headlamps through the center of its twin fuel cells," Fox News reports. "LED lighting is featured front and rear, and the retro-futuristic bodywork would look right at home on the streets of Mega City." Although buying Reeves' custom built motorcycles for sale may not be an option for everyone (the first model runs as high as $78,000!), bikers can purchase custom motorcycle parts or custom motorcycle accessories to recreate the actors' motorcycles.

Futuristic Tron Motorcycle Helmets And Parts Hit The Market
If you have seen the movie Tron, you probably want one (or more) of the motorcycles from the hit Disney film. (Why wouldn't you?) Of course, you can make it happen by spending an arm and a leg for a one-of-a-kind futuristic motorcycle, or you can browse online aftermarket motorcycle shops for custom paint for motorcycles. Online stores sell motorcycle parts for less -- and that includes paint that glows in the dark and reflects light, just like the bikes in Tron.

Motorcycle sales have been climbing over the last 10 years -- and with good reason. There are more options for purchasing motorcycles and accessories (including protective equipment that can keep riders safe, in the even of a fall or crash) than ever before, too.

Motorcycle Manufacturers Reconsider Sexist Advertisements

By none none September 12, 2014 No comments

custom motorcycles partsAccording to researchers from the Motorcycle Industry Council, more U.S. women are riding motorcycles than ever before. In 2009, women accounted for just 8% of all bikers; in 2012, it was up to 12%! That may not sound like a lot, but that's 6.7 million women. Moreover, for women riding motorcycles in the U.S. -- and around the world -- it is not just about feeling the wind blowing through their hair, it's also about confronting troubling stereotypes and challenging years' worth of social injustices.

Female Bikers Motivate New Advertisements
Thanks to the growing numbers of female riders, there has been a shift in the industry's advertising, "featuring more women in their ads -- riding the bikes, not decorating them," The Seattle Times reports. It is no longer out of the ordinary for women to ride motorcycles, and more dealerships are specifically catering to female customers. Even so, the idea of purchasing bikes made for women in and of itself is a bit problematic and reminiscent of other, gender-specific and nightmarish products, like Bic's "Pens For Her" (look it up!). Instead of sinking your money into a hot pink and glaringly offensive model, go ahead and buy whatever bike you like. If you need to, you can purchase custom handlebars for motorcycles and other custom motorcycles parts to make alterations or adjustments for your height and any other individual needs.

Egyptian Women Challenge A Popular Taboo
Women in Egypt are riding motorcycles and scooters in order to take a stand. (For years, it has been a taboo for women in Egypt to ride motorcycles.) In riding scooters or even models pieced together from aftermarket motorcycle parts and accessories, women are doing more than just making a political statement, they are also looking out for themselves and each other. "Riding motorcycles can help girls avoid sexual harassment they suffer from in public transport buses," biker Basma El-Gabry tells Daily News Egypt.

Motorcycle sales are still rising after 10 straight years, and the growing number of female bikers is partially to credit. Whether women purchase bikes brand new or use custom motorcycles parts for a faster and more efficient ride, one thing is certain: by riding their motorcycles, they are making significant social and political strides.

Don't Settle For Boring Motorcycles

By none none September 4, 2014 No comments

custom rims for motorcyclesHow many motorcycles are registered in the U.S.? According to The U.S. Department of Transportation, Americans registered an estimated nine million motorcycles as of 2012. There are likely even more bikes on the road today. That's a lot, and -- understandably -- you may not be very optimistic about your chances of standing out in a sea of motorcyclists. Keep your chin up! There are some relatively simple ways to be the envy of everyone on the road. Which of the following best describes you?

Pimp My Ride Is Your Favorite Show

If it isn't over the top, it's not for you. Your dreams revolve around custom rims for motorcycles, and massive wheels and flame decals make you positively euphoric. Luckily for you, aftermarket motorcycle parts make customizing motorcycles possible and affordable. By perusing the Web, you can easily stumble across thousands of instructional videos to help you get started. Experts will show you how to remove wheels (to make room for much bigger and flashier ones) and how to install custom rims for motorcycles. Purchasing motorcycle parts online will expose you to a greater selection of wheels, rims, and decals -- and save you money in the process.

You're An Old Soul

A well-preserved Packard turns your head and leaves you basking in the afterglow of admiration. Classic motorcycles are just as valuable as some of the first automobiles, and they have the same charm. Honda, Harley-Davidson, and Triumph, among others, continue selling vintage bikes -- and vintage bike parts -- today.

You Watch Too Many Sci-Fi Movies

At least some bikers are out there, taking over the road on their electric motorcycles, complete with Tron-style lighting. A handful of Tron-inspired bikes recently sold for millions; the manufacturers donated the proceeds to charity. With some tinkering, you can build your own motorcycle with sleek wheels and neon lights. Do a bit of digging and make sure you fully understand traffic laws in your area, however; some additions or alterations to your bike may not be legal in all states.

Riding a motorcycle is one of the most cost efficient means of transportation. And it doesn't have to be boring, either. Turn heads and rule the road with vintage bikes, to-die-for rims, or Tron-inspired neon lighting.

Do You Think Motorcycles Can't Get Cooler? Think Again

By none none August 26, 2014 No comments

motorcycle part storeIt's a love story unlike any other. Just about 50 years ago, an unknown culprit stole Donald DeVault's 1953 Triumph Tiger 100. California authorities recovered the bike and recently returned it to DeVault, now 73. "His first reaction? To hug the man who found the bike. His next move was — naturally — to take the bike for a spin in the parking lot," The Huffington Post writes. What's the moral of the story? People love their bikes, and with a little creativity and dedication, they can make them truly their own.

Are You Riding Something Straight Out Of An Action Movie? (Why Not?)
Do you remember the scene from The Dark Knight? "The Bat-Pod, a two-wheeled vehicle that detaches from the Tumbler and sports an array of weapons, including machine guns and rapid-fire cannons. It might not have the best mileage, but it’s exactly the kind of ride you want when fighting bad guys in lower Gotham City," Timemagazine writes. If you want something similarly flashy, motorcycle part stores and custom motorcycle parts and accessories may be your answer. Similarly, another motorcycle devotee used some cheap motorcycle parts, scooters, and LED tape to create a motorcycle that looks like it was taken straight out of the sci-fi movie Tron.

Part Car, Part Motorcycle, All Speed Bullet
Do you want an enviable car or an enviable motorcycle? One developer proves that you do not necessarily have to choose. The resulting vehicle was completely enclosed, with built-in air conditioning capabilities. (The enclosed vehicle will not be subject to the helmet laws in 19 U.S. states or the partial helmet laws in 28 states.)

Do you want a motorcycle that is truly one of a kind? Browse motorcycle part stores and/or go online for even more affordable aftermarket parts, and use your imagination to create something out of a Hollywood blockbuster or an awe-inspiring hybrid that will leave all of your friends jealous.

These Kindhearted Bikers Will Make You Cry

By none none August 1, 2014 No comments

motorcycle accessories storeBikers get a pretty bad reputation. Up until recently, Americans have associated bikers with chains, leather, and tattoos for years. Some even believe that nearly all motorcyclists are a part of violent biker gangs. That is a far cry from the truth. More often than not, bikers are completely normal people -- and some will even shock you with the extent of their kindhearted gestures.

Why Did Bikers Visit An 11 Year Old Boy With Cancer?
Gage Driskell, 11, continues his battle against cancer. According to his father, the young boy has several tumors in his brain and along his spine. What does this have to do with bikers and motorcycles? "Gage's birthday wish was to go on a motorcycle ride. Little did he know, dozens of bikers would show up to support him, and make his dream come true," KVTB reports. Not one but dozens of bikers rode up to Gage, signed a leather biker vest for him, and ultimately gave him a ride to Pojo's, a family fun center, to continue celebrating his birthday.

Should Bikers Watch Their Own Backs First?
As well-meaning as these bikers undoubtedly were, motorcycle accessories stores and motorcycle parts distributors warn that motorcyclists, before thinking about anything or anyone else, should think about their safety first. Remember, 19 states require helmets on motorcycles at all times, and another 28 states have partial helmet laws. Protective equipment, like helmets, can significantly reduce the likelihood of serious injury, road rash, and even death.

Motorcycle riding safety tips -- or motorcycle safety tips for drivers -- are no joke. Motorcycle accessories stores recommend putting safety first and always wearing proper protective equipment.

Why Was A U.S. Marine Captured In Mexico, And What Do Bikers Have To Do With It?

By none none July 10, 2014 No comments

custom made motorcyclesAmericans typically associate bikers with gangs, leather, and tattoos. A group of Nebraska bikers are proving that they can be so much more. Motorcyclists are coming together to urge a Mexican prison to release a U.S. Marine.

Motorcyclists Will Not Stand For Capture Of U.S. Marine
"Sergeant Andrew Tahmooressi drove his truck into Tijuana not knowing he had crossed the Mexican border with firearms," KMTV reports. "All of the guns were legally registered in the United States. But in Mexico, firearm possession is almost completely illegal. He has been behind bars since April 1st on weapon charges." Bikers organized a ride on Wednesday, July 2 to protest his arrest. Mexican authorities will hold a court date for Tahmooressi early next week. 

This is not the first time motorcyclists have used their passion to promote a good cause. U.S. bikers have also famously rallied to attend a boy's birthday; the young boy continues to struggle with cancer and wanted to ride on a motorcycle for his eighth birthday.

Well-Intentioned Bikers May Need To Save Themselves First
Although bikers may have good intentions, statistics show that they may be most in need. According to The U.S. Department of Transportation, motorcyclists are 35 times as likely to suffer a fatal accident. Custom made motorcycles may be among the most affordable forms of transportation in the U.S., but they are also the most dangerous. Whether you are riding a new motorcycle, or a bike with motorcycle aftermarket parts, custom motorcycle parts and accessories, or custom paint motorcycles, it is important to carefully abide by all traffic laws and wear protective gear and equipment. (Remember that 19 U.S. states have helmet laws!)

Bikers in Nebraska are coming together to show their support for a U.S. marine. Authorities warn, however, that bikers should think of themselves and their own safety first. Whether you are driving new or custom made motorcycles, stay safe and wear all necessary protective gear.

Avengers Stars Take Spin On New Electric Motorcycles

By none none July 10, 2014 No comments

custom motorcycles partsHarley Davidson is experimenting with new electric motorcycles, and stars of Avengers 2 may be some of the first people to ride them. Witnesses spotted "[Scarlett] Johansson as Black Widow whipping around she chases down bad guys," according to Fansided. "The new motorcycle doesn’t have the same sound as the traditional 'Hog' but instead sounds more like a jet plane preparing to taxi."

How Are Electric Motorcycles Different?
For one thing, new electric models will weigh much less. Electric models weigh just 450 pounds. By comparison, a more traditional bike is easily 700 to 800 pounds. The prototypes are quieter, more efficient, and save riders the expense of gas. The changes aren't all practical ones, however. There is some promising news for daredevils and motorcycle enthusiasts. "This new bike goes [from] zero to 60 in less than 4 seconds!" Fox News reports.

Will Bikers Retire Traditional Hogs?
Are these new bikes poised to change everything? Although the answer to that question is not entirely clear, it is highly unlikely. Custom motorcycles parts and custom motorcycles kits, including Yamaha motorcycle parts and Honda motorcycle parts, are still for sale. Consumers will be able to design bikes to best suit their needs.

Whether bikers choose traditional models, custom models, or new electric varieties, they should keep precaution and safety in mind at all times. Motorcycle sales have spiked within the last 10 years (and continue to steadily climb), according to the Bureau of Transportation. Driving one, however, remains just as dangerous. When riding a motorcycle, chances of a fatal accident are 35 times more likely than if you are driving a regular vehicle. Always wear helmets and protective clothing to save lives and prevent injuries.

Electric motorcycles may be the way the future. Until then, stay safe no matter what kind of bike you are driving (or if you are driving one with custom motorcycles parts) by being mindful of safety and protective gear.

Should You Replace Your Motorcycle Parts?

By none none July 1, 2014 No comments

motorcycle parts storeAs of 2012, there were an estimated nine million motorcycles registered in the United States. And while only a small percentage of these vehicles were used for year-round transportation, it is vitally important to practice safe riding habits and make sure your motorcycle parts are in proper working order; doing so can often mean the difference between life and death. So before your next ride, check to make sure you are following some basic motorcycle riding safety tips.

The first thing you can do to ensure that your next motorcycle ride will be safe is to check your bike before your first ride of the season, and then perform additional checks before each ride. Pay special attention to your brakes: a 2013 Consumer Reports survey found that the most common issue riders had with their motorcycles were related to the brakes. However, if any of your motorcycle parts and accessories are found to be deficient, from your motorcycle exhaust parts to your helmet, you must immediately visit a motorcycle parts store or order the necessary equipment from a motorcycle online store. You should not ride your bike until the necessary parts have been received and installed.

The second thing you can do to ride your motorcycle safely is make sure you provide proper care and maintenance for your bike. Visit motorcycle parts stores as necessary, whether in person or online, and replace damaged equipment in a timely manner. Consider investing in aftermarket parts, which often allow motorcycles to become more durable, in addition to increasing the speed and value of the bike. Additionally, you should make sure to store your motorcycle in a garage or other secure area: this will not only prevent weather damage, but will help prevent theft. An estimated 80% of stolen motorcycles are taken directly from the owner's home.

The third and final basic step you can take to ensure your safety while riding your motorcycle is to make sure you make smart decisions while on the road. This applies to both riding choices and your choice of motorcycle accessories, such as riding wear and helmets. In regards to the former, take precautions to make sure you have plenty of space on the road, give other drivers and riders clear signals on the road, and avoid tailgating to decrease your chances of an accident. But in regards to the latter, make sure you have a proper helmet and protective clothing to protect you from potential accidents and the elements. At least 28 states in the U.S. have partial helmet laws for motorcycle riders, and the Department of Transportation recommends that all motorcycle riders use a DOT certified helmet while riding.

While protective clothing is less commonly discussed, it is also an important component of staying safe on the road: often made from leather and other durable materials, protective clothing keeps skin from coming into contact with heated parts of the bike and reduces the risk of road rash and serious injury during falls. Both helmets and protective gear can often be found at motorcycle parts stores, as well as at specific motorcycle accessories stores and online.