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4.7 out of 5 stars
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4.7 out of 5 stars
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on 23 April 2003
Got a bike or scooter? Do your own maintenance? Got the Haynes manual? Want to know how everything actually works, rather than just how it all bolts together? Then this is book is just for you..
Each chapter takes a major system of the bike (Engine, gearbox, suspension, etc), and without assuming any prior knowledge, guides the reader from the generic physical principles, to the basic system concepts, and into the detailed design variations found on past and present bikes.
The writing is clear and concise without ever being patronising or simplistic, and it doesn't go into so much detail you need a degree to understand it.
My only complaints are that the excellent colour illustrations in Chapter 1 aren't carried through to the rest of the book, and the book doesn't explain "how things go wrong" - a fault finding section at the end would be invaluable for the novice spanner monkey like me!
According to the front cover, this book is aimed at students on Further Education courses in Motorcycle engineering, but I would recommend it to anyone who wants to understand a bit more about how their chosen two-wheeler operates, and how it differs from other designs.
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on 19 August 2012
Being a young biker, and the only motorcycle enthusiast in my family, I have the difficulty of knowing absolutely nothing about how motorcycles work, and only learning from when parts on the motorcycle break and need replacing. I bought this book not too long ago, as i wanted to learn more about motorcycles and have got a fair way through it. Ive got to say it is a great book, the diagrams and descriptions are so easy to read and understand, and the understanding gained in just the first few pages is enough to atleast give someone an idea of how the inside of their engine works. Not only this but I find it a 'good read', where it is so easily understood that you can take alot of enjoyment on learning motorcycle basics and this book prevents it from being a stressful and confusing process. This is a definate buy for any beginner motorcyclist or anyone who takes interest in how motorcycles work, it is an in-depth techbook, covering topics such as: engine types, motorcycle transmissions, suspension, electrics, gearboxes etc. and in my opinion well worth the price for the amount of knowledge gained. This book may not make you a pro in the mechanics department, but it does give you the confidence that if something were to go wrong on your motorcycle, you will most likely know, or atleast have an idea of what the problem is, and this could potentially save you the hassle/money it takes for a mechanic to view the motorcycle and give you a quotation, and in some basic areas such as chain replacement it could cut out the price of a mechanic completely!
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on 17 October 2010
Anyone with a motorbike or scooter should buy this book, and quite possibly combine with others in the series. I agree that the better illustrations could have been carried through, and for problem solving, you might want to buy the 'Workshop Practice' book also published by Haynes. But how I wish I had had this book way back when I was 18 and got my first bike.
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on 8 November 2011
Packed with useful information and very well illustrated. A brilliant starting point - together with a Haynes manual for a specific motorbike - to build knowledge and understanding of how the many mechanical and electrical components work and therefore ultimately how to look after them, find and repair faults, make improvements - and ultimately enjoy your biking life a great deal more!
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on 17 December 2014
As always a clear and detailed manual - I have always found 'HAYNES' to be good and can only advise any motorbike owner to invest in one - I still have a manuals for each of the seven 'bikes' I have owned - must be good!
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on 12 July 2016
Well written for someone learning the basics. Only gripe is that the first 1/5 of the book is on quality paper in color and the rest is in low quality, thin, recycled, toilet paper looking paper. The content is excellent though. Have already resolved a few minor issues due to this book without having to drag it to a dealership.
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on 14 April 2014
Great book for someone like me who had no previous knowledge or instruction of mechanics/engineering but wanted to know how his bike worked. NOTE: this is not a guide on how to fix bikes just how all aspects function.

Assumes no knowledge so may seem like it's stating the obvious at time but is great for those with little or no previous knowledge or experience.

Good illustrations and for the most part well explained.

Chapters are well defined sectioning off different areas/functions to different chapters although this did mean for me at some points I was left wondering how something worked until it was explained in a later chapter.

Great for those looking to understand how a bike works and thus why certain maintenance tasks are so important.

Great buy
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on 11 July 2013
This 200 page book covers every subsystem of modern day motorcycles (even phased out technologies like carburettors). It's split up into 10 chapters each covering the major subsytems (engine, frame, transmission etc.). It doesn't present any of the information at an academic, engineering level. It also can not be used as a service manual, but I do believe it's the best book of it's (rare) kind. For someone looking for a more down and dirty approach I recommend the Honda Common Service Manual that has been republished recently. There you can find practical information on how to take a motorbike apart and tighten each screw back.

I've detracted one star because the book does have some dated information, being published more than ten years ago. Oddly, the book is printed on different quality paper and only the pictures in the first chapter are coloured. I've contacted Amazon and it appears it's a general issue with the book. Also, there are quite a few spelling errors throughout the book.

Overall, well worth the price.
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on 19 May 2012
I bought this book to better understand motorcycle mechanics and I have found it both useful and interesting. The text is not dry and despite this being a textbook it reads easily and provides well written, accessible and well illustrated introduction to the basics of motorcycle internal combustion engines, suspension, breaking systems and much more.
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on 18 August 2013
Bought this for my partner for Christmas - he already had some knowledge of how a bike works as he a mechanical engineer, but he said he found it immensely useful and has learned a lot from it.
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