Tested: Motion Pro Tools
By Chad de Alva
RIGHT TOOL FOR THE JOB
Having the right tool for the job can make all the difference when it comes to working on motorcycles. With the right tools on hand, there’s no need to jerry rig a solution to get the job done. There’s also no need to worry about accidentally damaging other tools or the parts you’re working on should your improvised solution fail. Best of all, having the right tools helps you finish the project in the most efficient way possible, resulting in less time spent working on your bike, and more time riding.
Motion Pro has been making some of the best and most innovative motorcycle tools on the market for more than 30 years. Yet the company does so much more than just make a bunch of awesome tools. They make a complete line of cables and controls for all sorts of bikes, and they’re incredibly supportive of the sport, from sponsoring racers at every level, to supporting events like the Nevada 200 and advocacy organizations like the Trails Preservation Alliance. Motion Pro, in the words of an industry legend “is the gold standard of a motorcycle industry company.”
Motion Pro was founded by Chris Carter, who has been playing with motorcycles since he was 14. In 1968, Chris got into trials, and in 1970 he started racing the national MX circuit. His efforts caught the attention of Yamaha, and in 1974 he started working with the Japanese manufacture on the development of the Yamaha IT. While Chris was with Yamaha, he started developing his own tools to work on the new bike. 1975 was the year that Chris made the switch to off road racing by competing in hare scrambles and enduros, and he also qualified for the International Six Days Team (ISDT). He would also qualify for the ISDT in 1976 and 1977, bringing home the gold medal from Austria in 1976. In 1984, Chris started a company that sold aftermarket and OEM cables for Japanese bikes. By 1991, Motion Pro had acquired a local tool maker, and was officially in the motorcycle tools business.
Today, Motion Pro‘s tool line is extensive, covering everything from dirt bikes and ATVs to American V-Twins. Whether you’re just doing a quick bolt check, or splitting cases, Motion Pro makes a host of tools that can really help out on any service project. In addition, Motion Pro is directly involved in helping to ensure the future of our sport.
Show up to an event that supports trail riding advocacy like the Nevada 200 or the Trails Awareness Symposium (Colorado 600) and you’ll see Motion Pro listed as a supporter. The company recognizes that riders, companies, and honestly everyone who participates in this industry needs to be involved in ensuring that this sport has a future. As Chris puts it “if we don’t have places to ride motorcycles, no one is going to wear them out, and we will be out of a job.” As someone with an extensive racing background, Chris and Motion Pro have also been sponsoring riders at every level of the sport since the company was founded. Know that any time you purchase a Motion Pro tool, you’re supporting a company that gives back and pays it forward to the sport of motorcycling. Now that we’ve established the fact that Motion Pro is a moto-industry company that does it right, let’s check out some of their awesome tools.
FUEL INJECTOR CLEANER
Modern Fuel Injected bikes are more complicated than their carbureted cousins. The trade off for a bike that runs perfectly at every elevation is a system that is more susceptible to being impacted by fuel system contamination. Teeny tiny particles that can pass right through the orifices in a carburetor can clog or otherwise impact the function of your bike’s fuel injector, and Motion Pro has a really slick solution for cleaning your bike’s injector(s).
The Motion Pro Fuel Injector cleaner is a system that allows the user to back flush and flush the fuel injector(s) from all sorts of bikes. The system is straight forward to use and is a great tool for diagnosing the proper function and flow of a Fuel Injector.
The Motion Pro Spinner T-Handles are used almost every time I work on a bike, because they’re so darn useful for installing and removing fasteners. A spinner handle on the shaft of the tool enables you to steer the tool and simultaneously spin it, giving you the best of both worlds: you can aim the tool to quickly align those shroud screws and you can add a little pressure to the tool to help get your seat screws to engage. Seriously – these tools need to be in every rider’s toolbox. The Spinner T-Handle is available in 3/8” drive, ¼” drive, and a bit driver, which is great when paired with a set of Torx Bits.
MINI CHAIN PRESS TOOL
This little guy makes short work of pressing the side plate back on your master link. The tool is small enough that you can carry it with you on the trail, and likewise this tool makes installing a chain in the shop a breeze. Given the price point, there’s no reason not to have one. If you want to take things a step further, pick up the CHAIN MASTER LINK PRESS TOOL, which is a shop tool, but it has the additional functionality of being able to press a master link out of a chain in seconds.
SLACK SETTER PRO
KTM riders know the old saying of “three fingers, right behind the chain slider” for proper chain slack on their bikes. Well it turns out, human fingers come in all shapes and sizes, meaning that measurement is about as effective as using your… never mind. A much better solution that actually ensures that your chain is in spec is to use the Slack Setter Pro. This slick tool lets you measure chain slack in millimeters, so you can determine if you need to make an adjustment or not.
BEADPRO TIRE BEAD BREAKER AND LEVER TOOL SET
Motion Pro’s BeadPro Tire Bead Breaker and Lever Tool set is a great tool to have with you when you’re working on a trailside tire fix, or in the shop and swapping tires. These fancy looking tire irons can lever off of each other to break the bead of a tire, which is a HUGE help when you’re fixing a flat in the field. When the bead is broken free of the rim, the other end of each tool has a spooned end so you can work the tire on and off. This is a textbook example of a multi-function tool that’s worth its weight in gold, making the BeadPro an integral part of a great tire repair kit. The BeadPro comes in an aluminum version for trail use and steel version for shop use.
The real name for the Pro Funnel is the super useful graduated container with a swivel funnel and a stopcock attached to the bottom. But I appreciate how much easier Pro Funnel is to say than the other name. This tool makes oil fills and other measured fluid fills as easy as possible. Simply pour in the required amount of fluid, put the end of the funnel in the fill port on your bike, and open the valve. Whether you’re filling the tranny on your trials bike or the oil on your 890 R, this tool makes getting the right amount of fluid into your bike and not all over it a breeze. This is also one tool that I’ve been using long enough to see Motion Pro revise, and the new Pro Funnel only improves on the function of the old version (which is still a super handy tool).
CHAIN ALIGNMENT TOOL
This $15 tool needs to be in everyone’s tool box. The Motion Pro Chain Alignment Tool is a surefire way to ensure that your rear wheel is properly aligned on your bike. The machined marks on your swingarm will get you in the neighborhood, but the Chain Alignment Tool will make absolutely sure that your rear wheel is as straight as possible so that parts like your chain, sprockets, and wheel bearings can live a full life.
ADJUSTABLE TORQUE WRENCH ADAPTER
Proper torque on fasteners matters. It can be the difference between a perfectly snugged fastener or something that leaks, or worse, gets stripped out. Yet there isn’t always room to get the head of a torque wrench and a socket onto the fastener that you’re trying to torque, which is where the Adjustable Torque Wrench Adapter comes into play. This handy device lets you clamp a combination wrench onto your torque wrench so you can properly torque any fastener you need to. If you run the combination wrench at 90 degrees to the torque wrench, you don’t even have to do any math. This tool is key for torquing those hard to reach fasteners like KTM valve covers or coolant bleed ports on the head of a two stroke.
I’m pretty sure Motion Pro made tools for NASA at some point, because their Titanium wrenches are so impressively light, they seem like they could have come right out of a Space Shuttle’s toolbox. A complete set of 8, 10, 12, 13, and 14mm wrenches with the bag weighs a scant 156 grams. In comparison, the same wrenches made out of regular tool steel weigh 389 grams; more than twice as much. These wrenches aren’t cheap, but if their weight savings means that you’ll actually have tools with you when you need them, then they’re worth every penny. They also happen to be undeniably cool, so if you let your riding buddies use them – watch them like a hawk.
There are tons of options out there for air pressure gauges, but when you want to have the absolute most impressive air pressure gauge made, you need one of the Motion Pro Air Pressure Gauges. Available in digital, or analog in 0-30 and 0-60 versions, these air pressure gauges are the Rolex of the air pressure gauge world. Their build quality is second to none, and every little detail has been considered to make using them as enjoyable as possible. After you’ve spent time with the Motion Pro gauges, using anything else just feels like a crude tool.
There’s just something about using quality tools that makes even the crappiest, most Murphy-messed-up fuster-cluck of a project still fun in the end. Good tools are like good friends, and when you’re working together it’s always a good time no matter how many snags you run into. Motion Pro has built a reputation for making quality tools that make working on motorcycles easier and more efficient. Know that anytime you purchase a Motion Pro tool, you’re buying something that’s going to help you get the job done, and that your purchase is helping to support racers, organizations, and events that are dedicated to ensuring the future of our sport. For more information on any of the tools covered here, or to check out Motion Pro’s extensive catalogue, visit www.motionpro.com