I’ve written before about the soundness of owning – of getting if you don’t already own – a motorcycle in order to remain mobile in the months and possibly years ahead. Which could be years of rebuilding after an economic collapse preceded by months of upward-percolating fuel prices that could make driving a car a much more expensive proposition than now.
Possibly, an impossibly expensive one.
Gas is already more than $1 more expensive than it was just ten months ago – thanks to the executive-ordering of the Biden Thing that shuffles around various cheesy TV sets designed to make it appear he is in the White House. (Why this is being done when the Biden Thing could – presumably – broadcast from the actual White House is another question for another time.)
If the Biden Thing’s “infrastructure” caboodle becomes law, it is certain – not likely, but certain – that the cost of fuel is going to go up a lot more and possibly, unimaginably more. Try to imagine what it will be like in six months’ time – or perhaps three – when a gallon of gas costs $4 or $5.
Will you be able to afford to drive, as to work? If you cannot afford to drive to work, you may be faced with having to move closer to work – closer to a bus or train stop – all part of the evil agenda afoot, by the way. What they want is for most people to be unable to work in the city and live in the country, or even the suburbs. This is not conjecture. It is openly – brazenly – discussed fact.
By making it economically impossible for most people to get to work from home in the country, or the ‘burbs. Thereby applying applying pressure on them to sell their home in the country or the ‘burbs, at fire-sale prices, probably – since few prospective buyers will be able to afford to drive to work from there, either, when gas costs $5 or $10 per gallon.
This is the “deal” that will cost you “green” being urged by the Biden Thing and its minions.
Being able to ride is a way to thwart their intentions – and it may prove to be one of the ways to ride out this storm.
Almost any motorcycle averages better gas mileage than any car that isn’t a hybrid car manages on the highway – and many motorcycles average 10-20 MPG better than a hybrid car. For example, one of my bikes – an ’83 Honda GL650 Interstate – averages close to 60. This is a fully-faired touring bike, which means it has more cargo capacity than some cars. It can certainly carry a load of groceries/supplies, plus a passenger and – because of its fairing – it has wind/rain protection, which makes it viable to ride in poor weather, an important consideration for a practical Emergency Bike.
On the other hand, 25 gallons will fill the typical car’s 15 gallon tank once-and-half-times. A full tank of gas in most cars is enough gas for a week.
I used to own a 250 cc dual sport motorcycle which I now wish I still owned. This bike averaged 90-100 MPG. It had a 2.5 gallon tank. Twenty-five gallons of gas would keep this bike running for six months, maybe even a year.
Such bikes have other advantages, too.
They can go where cars can’t. This may come in very handy when – if – one needs to get away from a police car. Or a police SUV/truck, chasing down the “hesitant” for a Needling. Even the grippiest 4×4 is limited by its width – or rather the width of the trail. Dual-sport and off-road bikes can go practically anywhere a horse can go – and faster and longer, too.
But there are some important things to consider before you start shopping- as regards the kinds of bikes you should not get, because of the limitations they impose.
Avoid newer bikes (generally, those made after the early 2000s) with computer-controlled electronic fuel injection.
These bikes need less in the way of regular tuning/adjustment, but when they do need it, you may not be able to do it. Or find a critical electronic part, that cannot be fabricated, or made to work. It is also much harder to get an EFI’d bike to burn alcohol – which you can make – rather than gasoline, which you can’t make – because of the need to electronically alter the air-fuel ratio and other parameters to adjust for lower energy content of alcohol.
With older bikes that have carburetors you can easily rebuild the fuel system – for all practical purposes, forever – assuming you have a couple of spare-part rebuild kits (usually less than $25 for a bike) on hand. And you can easily get a carb’d bike to run on alcohol by re-jetting and richening up the air-fuel mixture, a simple mechanical adjustment. That plus some alcohol-friendly fuel lines (and a gas tank coated to prevent rust) and you’re good to go.
Speaking of which . . .
Another criteria that’s important to consider is a kick-starter.
It may become as hard to get batteries as it is likely to get expensive to get gas. A bike with a kick-starter can be started even if it has a dead battery, which could be very handy if you can’t replace (or charge) batteries. On the other hand, even if the bike you get hasn’t got a kick starter, it can be roll-started because – unlike most cars – it’s doable to push a bike to a hill.
You may also want to narrow your search to air-cooled bikes as these haven’t got radiators, hoses, thermostats or water pumps – fewer parts that might cause problems and fewer things to maintain, over time.
As long as you keep fresh oil in the air-cooled engine (buy extra now, so have it when) and keep the fins clean, it is unlikely to overheat – and it will always be easier to work on than a bike with a radiator/hoses and such to get your hands around, to get at what you need to get at.
The last thing to weigh-in on is that getting an Emergency Bike isn’t expensive. Used bikes are still very affordable, especially the older and more cosmetically challenged ones. A mechanically sound beater bike that would make a great Emergency Bike should not cost you more than $2,500 and if you buy before others start buying, you will probably be able to find one for a lot less than that. I stupidly sold my low-miles, 100 percent sound early 2000s dual-sport for $1,500 a couple of years ago.
I wish I had it back.
. . .
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