After purchasing all of the best bike parts and gear, tools and gadgets usually fall next in line on the list of bike necessities. We all love gadgets and some of us can never have enough of them. Whether you’ve been building your motorcycle gadget collection for some time, or you’re just now starting, the following 7 gadgets are must haves for all riders.
1) Bluetooth Intercom
If you’re a lone wolf rider you won’t have much use for this gadget, but bluetooth intercom makes riding with friends infinitely better. Using bluetooth you and a friend can communicate back and forth without having to decipher words over the background noise of your bikes. Certain bluetooth devices like the Sena 10R even allow you to share music with your buddies as you ride. This may create arguments over the ride playlist, but the ride experience is nonetheless much more fun.
2) Multi Tool Kit
It would be nice if you could haul your complete motorcycle tool kit with you, but hauling all of those tools in your saddle bag is pretty impractical. This is where multi tool kits come to the rescue. The pocket-sized pack of tools includes just about everything you might need for a quick roadside fix. CruzTools crafts exceptionally good tool kits. The CruzTools Outback’r series comes equipped with a socket driver, screwdrivers, open-ended wrenches, and spoke wrenches.
3) Helmet Sound System
Do you like concerts? Chances are you’d love a helmet sound system. The sound quality with built-in helmet speakers usually isn’t that great. The Headwave Tag attaches to the back of your helmet and vibrates the sound around your helmet to give you surround sound. Your music will sound better while riding than it ever has before and you’ll be able to feel the bass with your head. It’s like an on the go concert experience.
4) Mountable Sports Camera
Occasionally you’ll ride through scenery you’d like to capture with more than just your eyes. A mountable sports camera will allow you to record some of your favorite rides to later share with family and friends. The GoPro is widely considered the best sports camera, but there are other options available. The Drift Stealth 2, Xiaomi Yi, and Contour ROAM3 cameras are all affordable GoPro alternatives under $100.
If you’ve got a little more money at your disposal and you’d like to take your ride videos to the next level, you could invest in a mountable 360 degree camera. The 360Fly camera is a versatile 360 degree camera that can be picked up at your local Best Buy for $299 and mounted anywhere.
5) Attachable Media Buttons
It can be difficult and dangerous to manage your phone while riding. Toying with the phone volume or skipping a song can be enough of a distraction to cause an accident. Bluetooth media buttons can be attached to your motorcycle so that you can play songs, adjust music volume, and take pictures with the simple click of a button. Satechi produces an awesome set of media buttons that can either be stuck onto the body of your bike or mounted right onto the handlebars.
6) Mobile Phone Mount
You may want direct access to your phone while you ride. In these instances a phone mount makes more sense than media buttons, especially if you plan on using your phone for GPS directions. The Innoo Tech Bike Holder will work with virtually any phone and can be easily installed on your bike without the use of tools. At a price of only $12, the Innoo Holder is probably one of the best phone mounts available.
7) Motorcycle Tire Inflator
You can never be too prepared for contingencies. Should you discover your tires are running low on air during your ride, a compact tire inflator will definitely come in handy. There are a few good compact tire inflators out there, but the Slime 40001 motorcycle tire inflator probably offers the most in terms of value. The Slime 40001 can reach up to 300 PSI and can be used with any 12 volt power source. With a sticker tag of $28, it’s extremely affordable.
8) Greenlight Stuff Trigger
For some streetlights which look for changes in the magnetic field to change, a bike isn’t strong enough to change the light. If you’ve ever been stuck at a red light while riding, then you understand the frustration this can bring. Attaching a magnetic strip to your bike in most cases will do the trick.
You could DIY your own light trigger and super glue a magnet to your bike or you could buy an attachable trigger like the High Power Green Light Stuff Trigger. The key to making these magnets work is to attach them facing the ground on the bottom of your bike frame. If the magnet isn’t close enough to the ground the light switch won’t sense it.
9) Mobile Power Supply
There’s a lot of batteries you’re responsible for charging between your GPS, your camera, your phone, and other various electronic gadgets you may have on your bike. There’s nothing worse than having a battery die halfway through your ride, especially if it’s your GPS. Having a mobile power supply on your person can always come in handy.
The Antigravity XP-3 Micro-Start comes with a complete array of different charging adaptors so that you can charge practically any device on your person. The battery even has enough juice to start a V8 engine and could be used to start your bike. The battery can fit right in your pocket and is perfect for motorcycle touring.
Gear Before Gadgets
Upgrading your bike with parts and gadgets is important, but riding gear shouldn’t be neglected. Good safety gear not only keeps you alive, but also keeps you comfortable while you ride. If you haven’t already, be sure to take a look at the best motorcycle safety gear of 2016.
Do you own any of the nine must have gadgets? Are there any other riding gadgets you feel are must haves? Be sure to let us know.