View Full Version : Hotwiring a motorcycle

02-06-2015, 05:59 PM
I need one of my characters to teach another how to hotwire a motorcycle (specifically Japanese "naked" bikes, I can be flexible with the exact make/year if it would make a difference). Yes, the characters are doing it with the intent to steal, and because of that (also because the POV character isn't a mechanic), I don't want to describe things in too much detail.

There is quite a bit of information out there, but the couple of videos on YouTube make it seem very simple, while some of the posts I've read on other forums make it seem more difficult. If the method you can see on YouTube is correct, that's very easy to visualise and describe, but it kind of seems like those are cheaper bikes or even scooters?

If you're not comfortable posting here, PM me. I'm not planning to use the knowledge for anything other than my book, but I kind of feel like I need to know more details than I do (even though I don't plan to teach my readers step-by-step how to do it either) in order to visualize the scene properly. Thanks!

Mr Flibble
02-08-2015, 01:18 AM
I used to have an old Yamaha I could start with a screwdriver placed instead of the key...

It's going to depend on the age. Older bikes (especially old enough to have a kick start) had pretty simple ignitions you could force, as above, and were easy to get going because it was actually the kick start that started the bike*. Newer ones are generally all electric start, so need more care to jigger with -- I'm not 100% I could do it tbh.

I know this mainly because I have a habit of losing my keys...

*Or in one memorable month after a small incident, I had to bump start it every time as I had no kick start!

02-08-2015, 11:28 AM
Thanks! That's helpful! I also found the screwdriver fix on another site! Does it not screw up the ignition to do that? ;)

02-09-2015, 05:07 PM
I agree. I used to have an old 1965 BSA A65 Thunderbolt. It was kickstart and the ignition switch was a simple keyswitch. If you shorted out the contacts, you'd have live ignition and you could kick start it. It had no steering lock, or anything sophisticated like that.

Using an old bike, like that, might give you a bit of drama - mine used to regularly fail to start and I'd end up pushing it down a hil and jumping on, to bump-start it. It could fail to start at a critical moment.