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Why wouldn't you use a helmet?

I was just in Athens, and found it striking that people quite often don't use helmets when riding. 

I've travelled more than a bit but on my most recent trip I went to Athens where I've never been before. Also I saw bikers conduct in a manner I've never seen before in "civilized" world.

In countries like Italy and Spain is not uncommon that people ride mopeds without helmets. But in Athens, it seems, they don't use helmets on big bikes either. At first I thought maybe it's a young-and-rebellious thing, but in the same instant a 60+ geezer cruised his Bonneville with the little hair he had fluttering in the wind. The most extreme case I saw was someone pulling massive wheelie with his 636 in heavy traffic. Even as such a bit questionable, but without a helmet, I'd deem it outright insane.

I'm not the most safety-oriented biker, but when I think about my Estonia-Finland-Sweden triangle of influence, here riding without a helmet in a city centre …

My gear on Cannonball Bike Run 2015

Little over a week's riding and 6000km in extremely diverse conditions provide some insight on what you are using. This is a review of the equipment I used during 2015 Cannonball Bike Run. 

Jeremy Clarkson once wrote "...that being a motoring journalist is a bit like being Prince Andrew. Hugely good fun, but in the big scheme of things, not very important." Then he tells about going to a boat show without any clue about boats but with an intention of buying one. "I shall probably end up buying the cheapest, and that's what started me thinking. Is it like this when people who know very little about cars go to a motor show? [...] This then is where motoring journalism starts to make sense."
Like Clarkson, who, having driven all the family hatchbacks, can tell you Not To Buy A Hyundai Accent, I have used an extensive amount of riding equipment and definitely can tell, what's good and what's not. 
So, here you go, below you'll find a short review of…

Distinguished Gentleman's Ride Tallinn

Men's health awareness supporting charity event, the Distinguished Gentleman's Ride took place on September 24th. I went to check out my local ride's start in one of the coolest biker hangouts I've ever seen, Renard Speed Shop.

The cool custom bike workshop & cafe, Renard Speed Shop acted as a starting point of the Tallinn Gentleman's Ride and I decided to head out there to see what the local distinguished Gentleman's Ride looks like.

The weather was as nice as it's possible to be this time of autumn and I was greeted with a proper crowd and maybe fifty-ish cool custom bikes, and I have to say I was astonished by both quantity and level of the builds.

They didn't allow me to join the ride - apparently as the only one present. I won't speculate whether it had something to do with my lack of gentlemanliness or whether the Kwak wasn't considered a proper bike for the occasion. Oh well, on the riders' briefing they specifically said no burno…

DIY: Replacing chain and sprockets

If you’re at all technically minded, replacing your chain and sprockets is really easy. By using this guide you don’t need to pay your mechanic, if you don’t mind getting your hands dirty.

One of the most basic motorcycle services is changing your chain and sprockets. You don’t need to do it that often, but the job is straightforward, so if you can hold a tool, you’ll most likely be able to do it yourself. In this text I’m using my late Triumph as an example. How to know when a change is due? Motorcycle or chain manufacturers often have a service limit, this is to say, the length of X amount of links may not exceed Y, but have you ever heard of anyone checking that for a drive chain? No, me neither. Change your chain and sprockets if: There’s obvious failure in the chain, for instance O-rings sticking out or seized links.Chain is stretched to the extent where you'll be able to pull it clear from the rear sprocket by grabbing a link an pulling backwards.Sprockets are excessively wor…

Cannonball Bike Run 2k17: The whole story

This is a story of a group of five Finnish bikers riding off to the greatest ride of the year, Cannonball Bike Run.

Cannonball Bike Run is an annual extreme bike trip, with the fitting slogan “Life without limits”. It includes crazy riding on pre-inspected roads and a group of like-minded people with whom you can raise a glass at the shenanigans of the past day. It really is a great adventure for bikers who don’t give two shits about wearing high-visibility gear or obeying the speed limits.
The main characters of this write-up are: The Author. Cannonball veteran and Legend from 2015. Riding a Triumph Speed Four. The Hippie. Cannonball veteran from 2015. Riding an Aprilia RSV. Adrian. Totally insane rider from the Finnish Bomber scene. Riding a BMW S1000RR. Joni. Cannonball veteran from 2013 and 2014. Riding a BMW S1000XR. Markus. A big and cheerful fellow from the Finnish Bomber scene. Riding a Suzuki Hayabusa.

Please note: All the events in these texts are fabricated, all the pictures and …

CBR2k17: Epilogue

There are no proper words to describe the Cannonball experience. It’s a week-long orgasm, a petrol-smelling motorcycle shootout, and a chance to have excellent time with like-minded people.

After Saturday’s closing party we were gathering our strength on Sunday, had a few beers and ate well. I headed out to town with Markus and Adrian to get some souvenirs; I got myself another kilt. Otherwise nothing much went on, people were leaving on their respective ways and others were cracking open beers and downing gin & tonics. The next morning we’d head out to Newcastle, where we’d take a ferry to Amsterdam. We chose to take the coastal road, and were rewarded with really nice views. Although we were riding sort of slowish, my rear tyre was starting to show a flat spot. This is why I told Joni and the Hippie, that I’d ride on my own, slower pace to Stockholm, where I’d take a ferry to Tallinn. Joni and the Hippie were going to head to Turku from Stockholm. Adrian and Markus took their own …