People come to this blog daily to read about riding motorcycles in Singapore, or how to maintain their two wheelers. Thank you for being a reader, but I am afraid this may be my very last post on motorcycles.
This past week, two speeding-related things happened in Singapore – a 19-year-old P-plate driver killed himself while riding at high speed through Bedok and the Traffic Police announced their next-generation speed cameras.
The timing could not have been more coincidental, and while I hate speed cameras like anyone else, I cannot help but agree they are a necessary pain.
Ludicrous as it sounds, biker dads are mostly like Batman. Not in the heroic sense, but just the alter-ego lifestyle we often lead.
While the family is still asleep in the wee hours of the morning, we put on our leathers, fire up the engine, rumble through the streets, avoid the cops, and meet up with other bikers to eat and drink coffee.
Then we get home, park the bike, peel off the riding boots, hang up the leathers and are back to the boring daddy stuff (housework, office work on the computer, reading the news) when the kids wake up bleary-eyed.
Every Ducati is a work of art, and it’s always fun to find new ways to photograph these beauties on a small island like Singapore. I used to scout actively for photographic opportunities on my previous Monster 1100 Evo with my larger cameras, but I’ve slowed down a bit with my current Monster 1200S due to work and generally lousy weather.
It’s been a busy time at our new startup but I took some time out today to attend my first dialogue session organized by the Traffic Police for the motorcycle community.
I usually hang out with my fellow Geeks on Motorbikes so it was interesting to see who else would turn up. There were representatives from the driving schools, the Singapore Kindness Movement, a cycling group, a Vespa group and the largest group of bikers were from the local Harley commmunity (well, the event was held at Harley-Davidson’s showroom after all). I was the only Ducati rider there.
A lot of people believe that a Class 2A motorcycle is good enough for daily commuting use. It’s true as the stalwart Honda Super Four (400cc) has been the most popular mid-range bike on our Singapore roads for the few decades. Even my aunty asked me why I don’t ride “that bigger Honda bike”.
However, this could be the class of motorcycles where bike dealers can squeeze buyers most effectively. If you are looking for the best deal in Class 2A, you may only want to buy used, and not new motorcycles.
If you are bidding for a Singapore licence plate for a car or motorcycle, you’ll probably be wondering how the Land Transport Authority comes up with the last alphabet of every plate. For example, the “L” in SKR22L or the “Z” in SJN555Z. It’s some complex formula I won’t go into, but here’s a nifty online tool to find your ideal plate number combo for future series of plates.
First off, this post could be disagreeable to both car drivers and motorcyclists alike, so please hear me out first. I have spent a lot of time writing about motorcycles and how to stay alive as a biker, but I know many bikers won’t bother until they get into situations where they truly understand the risk.. or maybe it might be too late by then.
This week, apart from the awful haze from Indonesia, a lot of Singaporeans were stunned by the news of a young 25-year-old Ducati rider who was killed by a big truck on the Pan Island Expressway at the Kallang area. The accident was grisly and bikers pleaded with others on Facebook not to distribute graphic photos of the accident.
The 50-year-old driver of the truck was arrested and many keyboard warriors assumed it was his reckless driving that killed the biker.
The mainstream media covers the rise and fall of the Singapore car industry extensively, but motorcycle sales statistics largely get ignored. So being the usual kaypoh that I am, I pulled out some public documents from the Land Transport Authority to show you what’s happening with the local motorcycle market.
If anything, it’s good information for bikers who want to know how their favorite brands are doing in our small market, and it explains why the mix of of motorcycles on Singapore streets is changing gradually towards the high-end.
When they were unveiled in 2013, one of the first things I noticed about the latest generation of Ducati Monsters was the intestine-like radiator hosing that snaked intensely around the 1198cc Testastretta liquid-cooled engine. Some people said the hoses were ugly, but I thought they were unique and brutally raw.
Ducati obviously did everything it could to make it less prominent – beneath the fiery red tank and trellis frame, the radiator hoses were blacked out like the rest of the plastic parts.
But I was fascinated because the aesthetic way the hoses had been arranged as they emerged from one end of the engine, got channeled through the water pump cover, and entered into the radiator like three snakes poised to attack. Or maybe the Ducati designers were just trying to make sure the hoses didn’t block the trellis frame.