Now is the time to nail down some surprise gifts for that special someone who just happens to be a scooterist. In Detroit, we have a great range of possibilities for gifts including weather, performance, maintenance and just fun accessories that can make scooting better, safer or more fun. Here’s a list of ideas:
Wow, it sure got cold early this year, eh? A quality winter jacket will light up the eyes of any scooterist who continues to ride in the winter. Try Joe’s Army Navy for a slightly larger than normal military-style jacket (to wear over a protective riding jacket.) Whether it’s a vintage parka or a new, heavy duty jacket, it will go a long way to extending the riding season. While you are there, take a look at their heavy winter gloves, many times these “motorcycle” gloves are a great, inexpensive gift for a rider. In a pinch, get some non-cotton long-john underwear as a great layering start. Up the price range there are some fantastic grip heaters available through amazon or eBay - I like the Oxford Hot Hands as they are generic to any scooter that has a battery. Sure, some installation is involved, but the payoff is fantastic comfort instead of not being able to ride due to numb hands. A snowmobile suit is also a good idea, but only for the hardcore riders. Don’t forget products that can minimize or prevent visor fogging - ask at the counter at your local scooter or motorcycle shop for these products. Also, a neck warmer sleeve is a great, inexpensive way to show that you care.
Winter riding isn’t the time to introduce a lot of performance in a scoot, but improving cold starting (with new oil), running (with a fuel treatment product) or new tires (to grip, not slip in cold, non-snow or ice conditions) can help the scooterist survive and enjoy even the occasional Detroit winter scoot. For tires, go out to the garage and write down the tire size and take it to somewhere like Blackbeard Powersports or shop the internet for the tire size and the word “winter tire” and you will be presented with a plethora of choices. If you don’t know anything about scoots or motorcycles or tires, be sure to visit a professional at your local tire shop so that they can let you know what is available and what needs to happen for them to get the scoot in for a wonderful winter riding surprise. Tires make a huge difference in confidence and safety on any vehicle in the winter, and especially for two wheelers. It’s a law in Germany in winter that both four and two wheeled vehicles have winter tires on them, and it’s a fantastic idea. Sure, it’s a bit expensive, but the safety of not having that crash is well worth it over a summer tire that is frankly useless under 40 degrees. More on winter tires on a scoot soon.
Always appropriate, especially as smaller, useful gifting, a scooterist can always use the various tools, tires and fluids that make our scooters go. A set of small metric wrenches is a fantastic tool for any scooterist - try Sears for quality Craftsmen wrench sets. For specialist tools (for specific scooters), try your local scooter shop. As long as you know the make, model and year of the scoot, they will be able to help you with spark plugs, oil and fuel additives that will help a scooter run better.
Motorcycle Superstore, Amazon or your local retailer are fantastic sources for inexpensive, fun and last minute gift ideas. Helmets, spare visors, fuel treatments and even inexpensive covers are available within a few clicks or with a stop by of 15 minutes at the store. A scooter themed scarf, a Battery-Tender battery maintenance and charging device or yes, even a gift card, is a perfect gift for your scooterist. Ask around for generic things that almost any scooterist can use (cable lube, stickers, tie wraps, and air gauge, etc.) If it gets late, hit the hardware store for shop rags, wax, the tire pressure gauge, or yes, a gift card. Scooterists love gift cards.
What’s next: Building a winter rider