The motorcycle industry continues to innovate and roll out new technology, not just in terms of bikes and gear, but also in accessories, tools, and gadgets. For some, owning the latest and most complicated set of tools gives them a sense of great pride. There are some tools that are so niche, they practically never see the light of day. While other gadgets are so complicated to use, that you’re better off using something else, both for your convenience and your bike’s safety. Meanwhile, some accessories are so complicated that they have the potential of ruining your motorcycle and leaving you with a hefty repair bill.
One of my favorite motorcycle YouTubers, FortNine, just uploaded a video highlighting motorcycle gadgets you just don’t need. Quite frankly, I agree with his list for the most part, as I myself love to keep things simple when working on my bike, too. Here is some of the stuff he pointed out, and some others that I think rank high on the list of "useful but not necessary".
First of all, before I dive into FortNine’s list, one thing that definitely doesn’t belong near your bike or in your garage are cheap tools. There’s a saying that goes "only a rich man buys cheap tools." This is because using cheap tools undoubtedly increases the risk of them failing when in use, resulting in damaged parts, and an unnecessary repair bill.
360-Degree Chain Brush
This tool is pretty funky and looks pretty hard to use. Indeed it works, but there are other simpler and more efficient ways to clean a chain. I for one, find that certain areas of my chain are more gunked up than others, so I opt to use a standard chain brush, or even an old toothbrush instead.
Wheel Balancer Beads
For decades, wheel weights have been responsible for keeping our rides smooth at speed. These balance beads however, seek to replace wheel weights all together. These tiny glass beads get pumped into your tire and act as real time balancers by using the wheel’s centrifugal force when in motion to balance it out. However, a couple of drawbacks of this system include the fact that the tiny glass beads could clog and ruin your valve core, and at high speeds, the centrifugal force gets negated, as Ryan explains so eloquently.
Battery-powered Fuel Transfer Pump
With gasoline scattered rather generously even in rural areas, and several other siphoning tools available on the market, I just don’t see how this fuel transfer pump is a necessity. Unless of course, you frequently fiddle with your bikes in a way that requires you to siphon fuel from one bike to another frequently.
Overloading Your Bike With Electronics
Now this isn’t a gadget or accessory in particular, but it’s something I see quite a lot. Oftentimes, some dude on a scooter or sportbike would turn up to a stoplight with his machine decked out in all sorts of electronic add-ons ranging from LED underglow to full on sound systems. Unlike cars, our bikes’ batteries are a lot smaller and as such adding more and more electrical components to our bikes are likely to strain the charging system. Not to mention the tendency for people to get lazy when installing electricals.
So there you have it, the list of gadgets that are a little overkill or oddly specific. Don't get us wrong, they can be useful, but when you have alternatives, they don't need to be an expense. Unless you need something oddly specific. What other gadgets do you think are a little excessive?