Limited Edition EarPeace Moto Pro Earplugs For Motorcycle Safety Month!

Here at, all of our staff wear earplugs every time we ride. We value our hearing, and we want to make sure we can hear our bikes’ exhaust note for years to come. Consequently, we’ve tested tons of different types and brands of earplugs. What’s really cool is that, after seemingly generations of little movement beyond the foam plugs of old, we’re currently in a period of technological growth in earplugs.

MO Tested: EarPeace Moto Pro Earplugs Review

After our positive experience with MO-branded, limited-edition EarPeace earplugs, we decided to join forces with the folks at EarPeace again to create a limited edition product for our fellow MOrons in celebration of Motorcycle Safety Month this May. After receiving a prototype that has the logo on a red earplug container, we know we have another hit on our hands. So now, you can carry a little bit of MO with you when you ride, showing that you’re a discriminating motorcyclist.

Motorcycles And Hearing Loss

Wearing earplugs means that you’re aware of the danger to your hearing that riding a motorcycle poses. At 65mph wind noise inside a full-face helmet can exceed 100dB. OSHA has defined 85 dB as the intensity beyond which there is the potential for permanent damage to your hearing. In other words, the longer you listen to sounds above 85 dB, the more cumulative damage you will suffer. Hearing protection is an extremely important part of your motorcycle gear.

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A Breath of Fresh Air: Introducing the Helite Turtle 2 Airbag Vest

We’re big fans of motorcycle airbag technology here at MO, especially our own Troy Siahaan who learned first hand how effectively an airbag can protect a rider in a crash.

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Crash Tested: Alpinestars Tech-Air 5 Airbag System

Writing a Crash Tested review is never something we want to do, but if I’m going to write one, then this one is especially important. If you weren’t aware, a couple months ago while comparing the Triumph Speed Twin and BMW R nineT, I was hit by a car. I flew over the hood of the car, did a flip in the air, landed on my shoulder, and rolled to a stop. It sucked, but thankfully I was able to walk away, injury-free albeit pretty sore. 

Shop for the Alpinestars Tech-Air 5 here

I credit my safety gear, of course, for protecting me, but there’s one particular item that stands out as the MVP in this case: the Alpinestars Tech-Air 5 airbag vest. Other than a helmet, this is a piece of safety gear I simply won’t ride without anymore.

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New Rider: Two-Fingered Braking

Many of us are products of MSF rider education courses and are quite familiar with the admonition to use all four fingers on the front brake for maximum control. While I support that rule for beginning riders, it is one that we quickly outgrow once we start logging miles out in the real world. I first began to notice the shortcomings of this rule when I anticipated in traffic that I might need to use the brakes. Covering the brake lever with four fingers makes it quite difficult to control the throttle. Then there were the magazine photos of all my heroes blatantly using two fingers on the front brake. Two-fingered braking appeared to address the problems I was encountering as an urban rider. (It was only later that I learned that it opened up a new world of braking techniques.)

This began my transition to two-fingered braking, and although more than a quarter-century has passed, I can still remember the moment when I first felt all the skills – smoothly rolling the throttle off and back on while my fingers slid over the brake lever during shifts or the act of naturally beginning my application of the front brake as I rolled off the throttle for a stop – synchronize perfectly. In the days leading up to this moment, shifts had been uneven, requiring much more attention than I expected when I began pursuing this skill. 

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Everything You Wanted To Know About MIPS

Stop and think about helmets for a minute. Undoubtedly the most important piece of safety equipment motorcyclists wear, have you thought about what goes into testing a helmet? Basically, a helmet is dropped straight down onto a surface and the results of the impact are measured. That’s all well and good, but there’s more to a crash than the impact itself. And besides, how many accidents involve the rider falling straight down, as if dropped from a building?

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Kisan Electronics Wants to Keep You (and Your Bike) Safe From Distracted Drivers

Have you ever wanted to grab an oblivious motorist and scream “CAN YOU SEE ME NOW?” after narrowly avoiding a crash? There’s no doubt that the number-one cause of multi-vehicle crashes involving motorcycles is a car violating a motorcycle’s right of way at an intersection. “I didn’t see him!” is the frequent excuse. “He came out of nowhere!” Sure. “MAYBE IF YOU WEREN’T INSTAGRAMMING YOUR LAUNDRY LIST YOU WOULD HAVE NOTICED ME,” you scream in your fantasy dialogue. What can we do to combat the motorcyclist’s arch-nemesis: the distracted driver?

Luckily, there’s Kisan Electronics in Colorado Springs, Colorado. Since 1993, the company has specialized in plug-and-play electronics that increase safety by making motorcycles more visible to distracted drivers. When it comes to lighting safety, Kisan truly knows their stuff, making high-quality products that are easy to install, engineered to comply with state, local, national and Canadian traffic laws, and designed not just to work, but to work right. It’s all to make good on their commitment to keeping you safe and stress-free so you can enjoy the ride.

LED headlights have gained popularity over the years. They’re brighter, clearer, use less energy, and are more reliable than old-school halogen bulbs; many new motorcycles released today come with custom LED headlight “clusters.” Kisan has been designing the pathBlazer headlight modulator which “winks” or “flashes” during daylight riding. It is like continually flashing your headlights without having to flick the highbeams. It’s a legal way to get noticed while not being impaled by an Impala or crushed by a Corolla.

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MO Tested: Arai Regent-X Review

Arai was in a bit of a pickle. The company felt it was making the best helmets possible, but couldn’t get some riders to try them on. You see, the round shape of the Arai helmet made for a somewhat tight opening at the bottom of the helmet. Apparently, when trying on Arais, some folks were getting the helmet down to their ears and not liking how snug the opening was. Then they either decided not to try on the helmet or (worse) selected a larger size that slipped on easier but offered a less secure fit. Had they persisted and gotten the lid over their ears, they would have learned that the interior of Arais are as comfortable as you would expect from a helmet from a premium brand. This realization was the genesis for the Arai Regent-X. 

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8 Reasons You Need To Go To A Riding School

For many, the thought of going to school has never been very exciting – I know I spent a large chunk of my youth counting down the days until school was over. But really, the reason many of us couldn’t wait to get leave the classroom was because the subjects were pretty boring. While we were physically in the classroom, our minds kept wandering to the one thing we’d rather be doing – riding motorcycles!

With that in mind, stop for a second and imagine combining the two subjects: School and Motorcycles. For many the thought of taking a riding school is far down the list of priorities, if it’s even on the list at all. The more you think about it, the more you can understand how beneficial taking a riding school can be. Whether it’s a street school or a dirt program (or both if you’re into supermoto), taking a riding school is nothing like sitting in chemistry class. Schools range in price from a couple hundred dollars to a couple thousand, and while that might seem steep, here are eight reasons why you need to get yourself back in the classroom.

1. It’s Fun
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BMW Develops Autonomous R1200GS

BMW has developed an autonomous motorcycle that can operate without a rider. BMW showed off a prototype based on an R1200GS to journalists last week in southern France, demonstrating its ability to start up, accelerate, corner and come to a stop without any human input

But don’t expect to see a GS moving by itself on the streets any time soon; even BMW admits the idea of an autonomous motorcycle doesn’t make sense as a consumer product. After all, what’s the point of an R1200GS riding itself to Starbucks if there’s no rider to drink the coffee? Instead, BMW plans to use the self-riding motorcycle as a platform for testing and developing motorcycle safety technology.

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Tips For Administering Motorcycle First Aid

The worst-case scenario has just happened: someone has crashed their motorcycle. You’re the first (and possibly only) one on the scene, and not knowing what condition the rider is in, it goes without saying that every second counts. Do you know what to do? What follows are some general tips to follow in case you’re put in the scenario to potentially save a life. In this lawsuit-crazy world we live in we also have to clarify the staff are NOT medical professionals, and everything mentioned here is superseded by proper medical training. Which brings up another point – if you don’t already have basic medical training, get it.

With that out of the way we need to establish some basics. If you have cell phone reception, call 911 immediately. Otherwise, keep an eye out for others who might be able to get help. Flag them down, if possible, and instruct them to get the proper authorities right away. In the meantime these critical moments are vital for survival. Key things to look out for are bleeding, breathing, and possible spine injuries. So what can you do?

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Suzuki Developing Tunnel Lighting System for Motorcycles

Suzuki has filed patent application for a system that would improve a motorcycle’s visibility when traveling through a tunnel.

As most experienced riders know, and as John Burns noted in a safety tips article earlier in the week, drivers just don’t see motorcycles very well. Whether it’s because motorcycles are relatively small, or if drivers just have a blind spot for anything that uses less than four wheels, motorcycles might as well be invisible to them.

If visibility is a problem in broad daylight, Suzuki suggests it’s a bigger issue when riding through a tunnel, with the low lighting, and tight quarters making it more difficult for motorcycles to be seen by other drivers.

Suzuki’s solution is to have motorcycles project a beam of light vertically onto a tunnel’s ceiling, creating something like a beacon or a halo alerting others to the presence of a motorcycle.

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Top 10 Ways to Stay Alive When You're Learning to Ride

Kind of when it comes to love, money, work, international diplomacy – everybody has to learn the hard lessons on their own. Some other things, though, it’s good to learn from those more experienced, those who’ve slid around the block a few times on their head. Well, sister, that’s me. There’s a lot to take in and understand when learning how to ride a motorcycle. It all looks so easy and fluid from afar, but there’s a lot that’s all happening at the same time, and it can be somewhat overwhelming. Fortunately, just like anything new, starting will be the hardest part. Here’s our best advice for staying safe while you get your sea legs.

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Ford is Developing a Lane-Splitting Detection System
Ford has filed a patent application for a system to detect lane-splitting motorcycles. The system uses various sensors on a car, such as cameras, RADAR, LIDAR and SONAR, to determine if a lane-splitting motorcycle is approaching from the rear. If a filtering bike is detected, the car would include that information in its collision avoidance system. Though mainly conceived for use in self-driving cars, the principles behind the design can also work for non-autonomous vehicles.

Ford’s patent application was filed on Nov. 23, 2016 but only published May 24, 2018, by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. Coincidentally, application was published just a week before General Motors settled a lawsuit with a motorcyclist involved in an accident with one of its autonomous cars.

The patent application describes how the system would focus specifically on the space between lanes and recognize when something is approaching through that region. A controller converts the imaging data to grayscale and then broken down into gradient levels, before comparing consecutive frames for any differences. A lane-splitting motorcycle would appear as cluster of pixels that would grow larger as it comes closer.

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New Rider: What Motorcycle Gear Do You Need?

Welcome to motorcycling! Maybe you just bought your first bike or are about to do it. Either way, you’ve probably realized that you’ll need to buy more than just a motorcycle. Motorcycle gear can get really expensive really quickly, but you don’t need to spend a fortune (which you probably don’t have since you just bought your first bike) to keep yourself comfortable while riding or protect yourself in a mishap. While all motorcycle safety gear is important, there is a hierarchy of necessity. Since the assumption of this article is that you’re short on cash, we’ll work our way down the list.

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10 Great Motorcycle Gloves For Under $100

Yeah, we know that we constantly say that you should buy the best gear you can afford. We think it’s time to show you some  glove bargains. So, we’re gonna pull back a little and show you how nice gloves that cost less than a C-note can be. In fact, some of these motorcycle gloves are almost inexpensive enough to buy two pair without breaking our self-imposed ceiling. Our reason for undertaking this exercise is to illustrate the breadth of gear available to riders who maybe just spent all their scratch on a new motorcycle and don’t have much left for gear.

Second to your helmet, gloves are probably the most important piece of gear you can buy, because it is a natural human reaction to put out your hands to break your fall, and having bare hands as you tumble towards the asphalt at 30 mph (or more) won’t keep you from sticking those poor hands out, either. We’ve seen the results too many times.

So, dive in, dear rider, and see what we’ve rooted out (in alphabetical order, no less) from the tubes of the internet. Here are 11 great motorcycle gloves under $100. (Yes, we threw in a bonus pair because that’s how we roll.)

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