According to the Motorcycle Industry Council over 1 million dirt motorcycles were sold in 2004, this being the most recent in an steady upward trend since 1993. It appears that Americans have a new found fascination with off road motorcycles not seen since the 70’s. If you are among the masses that “Do it in the dirt” or even if you are toying with the idea of tearing up trails in the great outdoors, there is good news. Not only has the recent decade brought more numbers to the world of off-road riding, it has also brought some new innovations as part of our digital world. I am here to give you insight into some of these new innovations and take you from the back of “Pa’s” truck to the latest in dirt rider technology. So put on your Internet helmet and reading gloves and try to keep up, kid.
Autocom Auto-Volume Music System for Motorcycles
Nothing gets your blood pumping like a nice ride through the peaceful trails of our great nation, being at one with nature, breathing the fresh air, observing the wildlife and gassing it over every obstacle in your way with Slayer blasting inside your helmet, right? Well the gods of technology have smiled upon us with the Autocom Auto-Volume Music System. This little gem was originally developed for street bikes but it works equally well for the off road rider too. It adjusts the volume of your favorite adrenalin inducing tunes according to the amount of noise picked up in a cleverly disguised microphone in the headphone connector. So now when you are riding full throttle you are able to hear every note of that wailing guitar solo and when you come to a stop and need to communicate with others, your not fumbling through a backpack looking for a volume adjustment knob on a Discman.
The setup is easy; mount the speakers inside your helmet, taking special care that they are located so they aim at your ears, plug in your favorite music source and you are ready to go! It is pretty compact and can fit onto a tool bag or a backpack (or if you have no shame, a fanny pack) and because of the precise volume control you don’t have to deal with it while out riding (unless you need to change the track or something).
Top Gear Accessories
Chatterbox FRS Multi Sport rider to rider communication
One thing that hinders all of us out on the trail is staying together. Weather you’re leading or following, navigating a web of trails is all part of the fun. But what about when you can no longer see your buddy ahead of you? Or when the person in back of you had some form of malfunction and due to your riding bliss, you left him (or her) behind. When things like this happen, unless you are constantly looking behind you (which can prove to be most detrimental should a tree suddenly jump into your path) how do you know what’s going on? Well, I will tell you, because you and your buddy are the type of super-hip individual that reads LIVEdigitally you took this into consideration and purchased the Chatterbox FRS rider to rider communication system before you became an off-road Robinson Crusoe.
The FRS is a simple unit that attaches to the side of your helmet and allows for voice activated rider to rider communication. The FRS uses frequency modulated (FM) transmission for crystal-clear communication with a range up to 2 miles. I talked to a fellow trail rider that praised this little device as he had 2 daughters that would follow him on their off road adventures, for him being able to hear when one of them needed help or took a spill was priceless. I have also witnessed racers using this as a training tool while on the practice track as a method of getting advice from the pits. Basically, communication makes a huge difference in all aspects of life and being off-road is absolutely no exception.
Trail Tech: Speedometer/Computer
Some of the things we really take for granted when operating cars and trucks and other on-road vehicles is that we always know the vital statistics of our vehicle. Well now the folks at Trail Tech have given the off road rider that type of useful information and not in the form of a cumbersome, breakable analog meter that looks like it is out of the dash of a ‘77 Buick Skylark.
The Trail Tech Speedometer / Computer is a complete on board system that is compact, durable and digital (ah, digital). Fitted for each application and available for most off road motorcycles and ATV’s this little gem is one of the handiest new tools of the trail I have seen in a long time. As you may imagine this does work as a speedometer but you have some other options that have been equally a guesstimate made by the rider for years, including:
- Average Speed
- Top Speed
- Overall Mileage
- Accumulated Riding Time
- Maintenance Reminder
All of these can be quite handy weather it be for bragging rights or to make sure you keep your bike properly maintained at specific intervals throughout the life of your trusty steed.
For the $71.95 having only a speedometer and a clock is like a scoop of Cookies and Cream and would be worth the investment. With all its features, its like Trail Tech is giving us a full fledged sundae, with extra fudge!
O’neal Deluxe Hydration System
Okay, so this product is not strictly “digital” nor does it have anything to do with electronics at all. But it is a great advancement in off road technology, and if you stick some batteries in it somewhere, that counts, right? We all know that when engaging in any kind of intense athletic activity hydration is key. When out on the trail with a helmet on and limited storage the O’Neal Deluxe Hydration system is just short of being sent from the gods themselves. Having 70 ounces of cool water on a hot day is not only refreshing but absolutely required, but having 70 ounces of hot apple cider on a cold January ride is an equal slice of heaven. That’s right this magnificent piece of off road tech not only holds and insulates cold liquids but your favorite hot beverage as well. All of this hydrating heaven is piped to you through a mouthpiece that is easily accessed with your helmet on and you don’t even have to stop due to the optimum ergonomic placement of the mouthpiece on the shoulder strap. The O’Neal Deluxe Hydration System also features zippered storage compartments for any other gear you want to pack and the bladder and mouthpiece are replaceable.
Well there you have it, whether you’re the casual off road ATV explorer or renegade racer of the supercross track these new innovations in off road riding technology are sure to take you to the next level of the sport. Remember to always ride with a buddy and keep your eyes open for more new products from LIVEdigitally.com.