A good ride can be made even better with the right music to accompany it. However, good sound quality on a motorcycle can be a little difficult to come by if you don’t know what you are doing. Here are a few tips to make the audio system on your bike better.
Do you have a fairing? If so, high quality marine speakers that are typically used for boats can work great on your bike. Boat speakers are waterproof so you won’t have to worry if you are caught in an unexpected rain storm and they are corrosion resistant as well. You might check out the marine speakers on this website. Boat speakers are usually white and that is not a good color for most motorcycles. Fortunately, you can also find black, silver and chrome speakers as well, although they are not as plentiful. Space is limited on a bike, but the larger the speaker, the better the bass response, so you will want to install the largest speakers you can.
No fairing? Then you need to look at bullet speakers that are designed for handle bar mounting. They are tiny and the better quality units can produce surprisingly good sound. However, you shouldn’t expect a lot of thumping bass from a speaker that small!
We are often asked by friends and customers “Why did you name your company Unicorn Adventures”, this is indeed a good question! As we are proud of our name and the little story behind it, here it is.
When we decided it was time for us to get out of the world of major companies and create our own one in which we could use our philosophy about life, fun and quality applied to our passion: making friends while riding the motorcycle across many places, it was time to find a name.
Obviously the very first idea was about twisty roads, but some people already had that idea, and after a longer thinking we decided to get away from the easy stuff with “Motorcycle Tours” and such! So it was more about finding a generic name, something positive!
An animal could look good, yes why not but which one? It needed to carry our values…hmmmm… after a little while the Unicorn appeared in the list.
Of course this needed to be checked as everyone has a different view and image of that beast.
This mythical animal is reputed in all cultures for its pure and positive image; for example in the European culture the Unicorn appears often accompanied by a powerful and positive magician. In the Chinese culture, the Unicorn is a sign of good omen for the travelers and an announcement of happiness to each of its apparition.
Great! It needed a bit of fun too as we won’t just offer straight line rides but pure curved roads around great sceneries…lets use Adventures (which also works well with our hockey player, skydiver, ultra marathon, planes, motorcycles and various other sport some of us like) and here we go Unicorn Adventures is the name we like!
Of course we did not forget to add the Motorcycle Tours label as this is what we do, now.
Took my oldest son, a teen, for a ride this week-end. Sort of a nice way to have fun together (no not the “Zen and the art of motorcycle maintenance” way, we aren’t that nuts 😉 )^
I selected a nice twisty road with a great view above the Mediterranean sea, in the middle of a forest and over a pass (those who come riding with Unicorn Adventures (en) will have the pleasure to experience that road) to have him enjoy the sensual feeling of real motorcycle riding.
The bike was smoothly bending from one curve to the next one, under the tree shadows, the engine was nicely purring, there was that wet forest smell in the air…it was just perfect….
And there came his comment: “If that is what motorcycle riding is about then I want to become a biker!”
At that time I was riding a nice Blue Honda CBR1100XX Superblackbird. On that sunny Sunday I decided to go for a ride up in the Vercors (en) (it is located in the South East of France close to Grenoble (use the following coordinates on GoogleEarth (en): 45°11’24.34″N,5°43’11.84″ E).
Riding the XX on the twisty mountain roads was always exciting and a nice “fight” as the 164 Hp came with some weight! After 2 hours sporty riding I started to feel my style (yeah as if I had one/have one) starting to get worse by the second! It was time for a break!
I found a nice bield, slightly higher than the road. Stopped the bike, removed the leather jacket, the helmet, the boots and socks and laid down in the grassy field, in the sun looking at my bike!
It was quiet, the sun was warm and I just felt at the top of the world! Happy! Like in a great moment of Zen!
What made that moment even better was to see the few cars’ drivers passing by looking at me with envy!
Those little moments of life just makes it perfect!
We can’t complain about our job, definitely not but sometimes it is great to just go for a ride alone, for a private, personal, egoistical ride. Just one day of to add some more hundreds of kilometers on the clock!
Today was my day of! My day to take my beloved R1200RT on the twisty Provence roads, just the bike, me and the curves!
Not too warm, not too cold, a nice smiley sun, all the people either at work on laying like fat steaks on the beach, the perfect day to enjoy motorcycle riding!
It was one of those rides without any goal, just an idea of where I would like to go, what places I wanted to see, what type of scenery I was in mood for. The type of ride you keep the helmet visor open most of the time to enjoy the great variety of smells expelled by the trees, the warmed grass and bushes. The type of ride the music of the engine enhances, and you can feel the bike is happy too!
Sometimes another biker who took the same decision waves at you and funny enough the only RT’s I drove by where red ones too! Excellent!
A nice ride with a delicious mix of pine forests and little villages, followed by dry plateaus (right in the middle of a military tank shooting range), and then the Verdon canyon with its impressive cliffs. It is always the same blast to see how great the roads are inland far away from the main roads destroyed by trucks and tons of cars. It seems that those small twisty roads have been designed just for us bikers, and what a pleasure to see the “Dangerous curves ahead for 20km” sign!
A little break on the way home for some food and some quiet time reading a good book (“The Long way round” from McGregor and Boorman, a really good biker and travel book I recommend for your evenings on the beach, swimming pool or little French village square when you attend a Motorcycle tour). At the end of the ride the clock just got 250 more kms, not even noticing the time fly!
One good read while on a motorcycle tour is Ted Simon’s “Jupiter’s Travels”.
Starting in 1974, Ted rode 65,000 miles during four years on his 500cc Tiger Hundred Triumph motorcycle. He went through many many adventures as you will read in his lovely book but the one that struck me happened in, what we “civilized” people consider as pretty uncivilized countries. Ted met the most fantastic people. I am convinced that even twenty years later it remains the same (see the lastest long ride adventure of Boorman and McGregor).
While I hated the “Zen and the art of motorcycle maintenance” pseudo biker way of thinking mixed with crazy people’s philosophy, I actually like what Ted developed, as his philosophy, over his journey. It is real, based on a real period of his life, and has definitely had some impact on him. I would love to meet that guy one day.
Here are some quotes from his book I would like to share:
•Does it rain because you carry your umbrella, or because you don’t? It’s a personal matter depending on how you remember it.
•There is nothing left for me to do but gather up my souvenirs and fly back to Nairobi. I wonder, would it have been like that if I had arrived on my motorcycle? I am sure it wouldn’t.
•Instant information is instant obsolete. Only the most banal ideas can successfully cross great distances et the speed of light. And anything that travels very far very fast is scarcely worth transporting, especially the tourist (TT’s note: that is why when you travel on your motorcycle alone or in a group you aren’t seen as a turist but more as a person trying tgo learn and blend in, in most regions).
There are many more interesting ideas and thoughts in Ted’s book but I suggest you discover them on your own.
You have taken your decision and will definitely have a ride in Provence and on the French Riviera alone or with a motorcycle tour operator. Now is time to learn a very important piece of knowledge which will help you blend in the local population or at least look like someone who understands real life!
This is about le petit jaune (the little yellow), try to pronounce it “LOW – PETEE – SEAN (like the actor)”. This means you want an aperitif based on Pastis. Even though Pastis is a brand like Ricard it is the most common name used for that very local drink based on Anis.
The proper way to drink it is to have “two fingers” thick of Pastis in the glass and top it with very fresh water. ATTENTION people in the south of France used to drink Pastis may understand that you are holding your two fingers vertically! Which doesn’t leave a lot of room for water.
That was the easy part because when you get to a bar and listen to the orders you may notice words like: Tomate, Perroquet, Mauresque etc… Those aren’t many other brands but ways to prepare the “petit jaune”. Lets get you a list so that you will really look local and have different ways to enjoy the drink: •Tomate: Pastis, Grenadine syrup, water
•Canari: Pastis, Lemon syrup, water
•Feuille Morte: Pastis, Grenadine syrup, Mint syrup, water
•Gargamel: Pastis, Caramel syrup, water
•Jean Louis: Pastis, Suze
•Mauresque: Pastis, Orgeat (barley water) syrup, water
•Perroquet: Pastis, Mint syrup, water
All this is not here to push you to drink alcohol but more a little bit of local culture.