10 gifts for the motorcyclists in your life

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Yamaha Motorcycles Street Event - I-90 Motorsports


10 gift ideas for the motorsports enthusiasts in your life

Of course, your motorsports buddy wants a new mount. But that's not in your financial cards. Still you'd like to gift something nice to them and you can without breaking the bank. Here's a few ideas ranging from stocking stuffers to all in goodness.

We offer a few shameless plugs along the way where applicable.

Level One Service Kit - $40-$100

We doubt anyone has ever gifted one of these before, so you could be the first. Look up what it would take to do a level one service at home on your friend's bike. Then gather together all the necessary items, place them in a box and gift away. Most likely that will mean oil, washer, filter and spark plugs. Beyond that, most level one servicing calls for simple adjustments and inspections. If the getter does not own their own owner's manual to determine that, get them the OEM manual specific to their bike, too. You could add in a roll of shop towels and some nitrile gloves to top it off. You will look like the most creative gift giver ever.

Shop Manual - $50-$150

It's one thing to own the owner's manual, but if you have the shop manual, now that's the cat's meow. This item is never sold together with the bike, but for the rider who likes to wrench your own wheels, it's a critical part of the workshop. A thoughtful gift? You bet! Some are available on CD-ROM and other digital formats easing up storage space.

Tire Care and Repair - $40-$500

One of the most likely mechanicals a rider will have on the road is a flat tire. Inflato-goo doesn't work, mushroom plugs tend to fail, and towing charges can get ugly. Smart riders carry a reliable/perpetual air source (not C02), an in-line air gauge and a serious/practical all around repair kit.

We'll toot our own horn here and tell you, there are pumps and gauges that are cheap or total overkill. We've come up with a pump/gauge/repair kit combo that gets the job done right every time for $100. A small price to pay, compared to the Sherman tank products in the market or getting towed out of nowhere. Click here to look at our combo.

New Helmet - $100-$1000

Most helmets have about a 5-year lifespan. After that the inner shell begins to harden and shrink and won't provide as much cranial absorption in a crash. After 5 years, basically, if you care enough about your noggin, it's a good idea to toss the helmet and get a new one. And there are plenty of good ones out there these days. Knowing this, when was the last time your riding buddy got a new helmet, and which models has he/she been looking at as of late?

Rally Registration - $50-$200

Rallies are popular with riders all over the world. It may be the case that you and your riding friend went to a few times over the years. Gift them one now in the winter so you're committed to blocking the time on your calendar for the coming year.

Looking for a fun rally in the Pacific Northwest full of great roads and scenery? Consider our Rally in the Gorge event, held each summer in Hood River, Oregon. www.soundrider.com/rally

Tour Registration - $200-$5,000

OK. You've been to all the rallies. Now you're both ready for multiple days on the road and you want to do it together with others. Consider a local or international tour. The possibilities are endless. For those on a tight budget, there are many available right here in the Pacific Northwest or along the West Coast. You could get more adventurous heading out with a group to Alaska, through Mexico, or a foreign country on another continent.

If you're on a budget, we offer two tours annually here in the Pacific Northwest. The routes change each year.

Our Road Trip tour takes you along a lot of tertiary backroads through the Pacific Northwest, while our Sasquatch Dual Sport GPS adventure Tour introduces you to some of the best off-road travel in the great region. Cost is $200 for the five days, then you book the lodging of your choice at your expense from there.

Training Certificate - $150-$500

Riding motorcycles isn't like driving a car. In the car world, you go to drivers ed, graduate, get a license, end of story. In motorcycling there's a whole other universe of skills to learn and we can't possibly learn them all at once. Track, off-road, dual sport, three-wheel - the world is our oyster. Consider taking some training together in the coming year, contact the right type of school and gift away. And remember, some of the training available may not be local, so you can create a fun road trip out of it too.

Snow Bike Conversion $5,000 plus fitment kit and labor

If your buddy owns a current model dirt bike by Honda, Kawasaki, Suzuki, Yamaha, Husqvarna, or KTM, chances are there's a snow bike conversion for it. Several companies make the conversion kits and more recently a number of dealers are getting into the sales and setup of these kits. No reason to keep that 450 dirt bike locked in the garage during the winter any longer. Snow bike conversions cost less than buying a snowmobile and the bikes weigh less as well.

Dealer/Accessory Shop Gift Certificate - $10-$X,000

So, you've looked through the previous nine items mentioned. None of them are right and you can't come up with one that is. Then get your bud a gift certificate to his or her favorite shop. They can use it to buy gear, service, or even put it towards a new bike. And you get to call the price out.

If your riding pal likes Sound RIDER!, or you want to introduce them to our store, we have gift certificates available starting at $25.

For more gift ideas, check out our current Monthly Motorcycle Marketplace column.

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