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Motorcycle Mania
Old 05-13-2006, 06:30 AM   #1
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Motorcycle Mania

I've avoided most expensive hobbies, but have caught the motorcycle bug.

Bought a 2003 Harley Softail at a very attractive price, and enjoyed a few rides.* Now that I've had a chance to get to know the bikes, and compare ours to others, I have bike-envy ... chrome, engine work, etc.

So, considering some upgrades (at dealer cost all around, due to my work), or swapping out for a more custom bike.* Custom bike at dealer cost is more cash up front, but should hold more value ... parts and labor on the existing bike, even at dealer cost, probably lose 60 to 75% of "value" immediately.

Then feeling guilty over LBYM, this isn't a necessity, what the hell am I thinking?* OTOH, you only live once, this is a rare indiscretion, maybe DW will never find out (just kidding ...), da*n these are fun and beautiful machines, yada yada.

Anyone else dealing with this disease?*
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Re: Motorcycle Mania
Old 05-13-2006, 06:59 AM   #2
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Re: Motorcycle Mania

Got the bug a few years ago and at 52 bought my first (and only) bike off e-bay. A little Honda Magna 750, that will hit 130 mph with no problem. Been bugging DW about getting another and got my eye on a sport tourer Honda ST1300. However at this point in time she ain't even close to biting.

As you said, we only go around once on this third rock from the sun, might as well enjoy it.
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Re: Motorcycle Mania
Old 05-13-2006, 07:24 AM   #3
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Re: Motorcycle Mania

Charles, frayne,

Since you've both been bitten by the "donorcycle" bug, be sure to fill out your cards and sign them. Some of us may need a spare organ one of these days.

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Re: Motorcycle Mania
Old 05-13-2006, 07:39 AM   #4
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Re: Motorcycle Mania

Quote:
Originally Posted by Charles
I've avoided most expensive hobbies, but have caught the motorcycle bug...
Anyone else dealing with this disease?
Oh, yeah. Totally illogical. Expensive, risky, immature.

I love few things more than taking a 1-2,000 mild tour on my K1200LT. Been everywhere from Death Valley to Zien to Cherokee to the Lake Superior Circle tour.

My bike is on eBay as we speak. Decided to stand down til I had more time on my hands. Florida provides nonscenic riding mostly, but it's easy, year-round, and lots of good destinations.
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Re: Motorcycle Mania
Old 05-13-2006, 07:48 AM   #5
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Re: Motorcycle Mania

We love to ride. We dropped down from four cycles to two. Sold the road bikes and kept the smaller on road/off road cycles. .

Always seem to be looking out for another bike of one kind or another.
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Re: Motorcycle Mania
Old 05-13-2006, 07:52 AM   #6
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Re: Motorcycle Mania

Yeah. *

The affliction has many ways of manifesting itself. *Fortunately my symptoms don't include the chrome "my bling is more shiny than your bling" thing. *Don't get me wrong, I can be found standing in my garage at midnight just LOOKING at a bike. *Simply trying to decide on the best viewing angle. *

As captivating as it may be, having the thing to look at is only the tip of the iceburg. *When you are interacting physically with the bike in motion, the effect is multiplied in countless dimensions. The sights, sounds, smells, accelerations, temperatures that are experienced influence the intellectual and physical process associated with managing the operation of the device. *There is enough to enthrall the artist, engineer, poet, musician, dancer, philosopher and lunitic in any personality.

There are lots of books written on the subject. *Two of them are by Peter Egan. *They are simply compilations of articles and editorials he wrote for a motorcycle magazine. *They are easy to read and capture the essence of this man / motorcycle relationship. *

Another more historically significant sufferer of this disease is T. E. Lawrence "Lawrence of Arabia".

Here's a link *http://motorcycles.about.com/cs/find...usriders_2.htm

"Boa is a top-gear machine, as sweet in that as most single-cylinders in middle. *I chug lordlily past the guard-room and through the speed limit at no more than sixteen. *Round the bend, past the farm, and the way straightens. *Now for it. *The engine's final development is fifty-two horsepower. *A miracle that all this docile strength waits behind one tiny lever for the pleasure of my hand. *
* * *"Another bend: and I have the honour of one of England's straightest and fastest roads. *The burble of my exhaust unwound like a long cord behind me. *Soon my speed snapped it, and I heard only the cry of the wind which my battering head split and fended aside. *The cry rose with my speed to a shriek: while the air's coldness streamed like two jets of iced water into my dissolving eyes. *I screwed them to slits, and focused my sight two hundred yards ahead of me on the empty mosaic of the tar's gravelled undulations."

"...Over the first pot-hole Boanerges screamed in surprise, its mud-guard bottoming with a yawp upon the tyre. Through the plunges of the next ten seconds I clung on, wedging my gloved hand in the throttle lever so that no bump should close it and spoil our speed... *

"A skittish motor-bike with a touch of blood in it is better than all the riding animals on earth, because of its logical extension of our faculties, and the hint, the provocations, to excess conferred by its honeyed untiring smoothness. *Because Boa loves me, he gives me five more miles of speed than a stranger would get from him." *

Excerpts from "The Road," by T.E. Lawrence


I get all misty eyed when reading his stuff.

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Re: Motorcycle Mania
Old 05-13-2006, 08:09 AM   #7
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Re: Motorcycle Mania

Donor Cycles.

Wear that helmet.
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Re: Motorcycle Mania
Old 05-13-2006, 08:19 AM   #8
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Re: Motorcycle Mania

Welcome to the club Charles.

A few things to do

Sturgis Bike Week biggest rally
Daytona Beach rally, good if you live up north and need a week in the sun
Lacona NH oldest in the country and a great time
Myrtle Beach

Many other things to do like swap meets, poka runs, charity events, toy runs. If you want you can pm me , dh has been riding since he was a kid (64 next month) he pretty much knows the ins and outs of the biker world, he can give you tips who and what to avoid to stay out of "trouble".

and sign your organ donation card, accidents do happen
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Re: Motorcycle Mania
Old 05-13-2006, 08:22 AM   #9
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Re: Motorcycle Mania

Safety equipment is important, but education is paramount. *LEARN to ride. *Take training from the Motorcycle Safety Foundation. *Most motorcycle crashes involve unlicensed riders. *Remember California's Governor. *Arrogance and ignorance is a bad combination.

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Re: Motorcycle Mania
Old 05-13-2006, 09:49 AM   #10
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Re: Motorcycle Mania

I just sold my 2001 Harley Road King. What a sweet bike! But I've been riding it less and less, and since we started a family I decided I would quit riding for a while. I've had bikes from age 20 to 40, and agree with the training comments.

Take the mototcycle safety foundations courses, beginner->intermediate->advanced. Take the advanced every couple of years to hone your skills.

I loved to ride, but never trusted anyone else on the road.
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Re: Motorcycle Mania
Old 05-13-2006, 10:07 AM   #11
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Re: Motorcycle Mania

I've never been into the cruisers but I can tell you that in general you are usually better off buying a bike that comes stock with the horsepower level you want than you are modifying the engine for more horsepower.* You'll have something that is more reliable, more driveable, and you'll probably spend less money too.

These days my modification money tends to be spent on premium tires and suspension, as they'll actually be of some use.* Blowing cash on making a 140mph bike go 150mph (or in your case with the Harley, a maybe 100 mph bike go 110) doesn't make much sense for street use.

As to the retaining value issue, it sure seems that the big cruiser/custom market has got to have the bottom drop out one of these days.* There are sooooo many of the things around and there is sure a lot of "fad" feel to the things. I suspect that one with 5000 miles on it is considered "high mileage" as a lot of them seem to be used more for posing than riding.

Buy the one you like because you want to ride it, not because it seems like a good investment.* Motorcycling can easily have lots in common with boating in the fashion of "hole in the water surrounded by wood that you throw money into".

cheers,
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Re: Motorcycle Mania
Old 05-13-2006, 11:17 AM   #12
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Re: Motorcycle Mania

You should always ride like you are invisible to the other drivers on the road, they just don't see you no matter how big a bike you ride.
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Re: Motorcycle Mania
Old 05-13-2006, 11:21 AM   #13
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Re: Motorcycle Mania

Yeah, but what about making 194 mph into 200 mph? There's something special about that.
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Re: Motorcycle Mania
Old 05-13-2006, 11:37 AM   #14
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Re: Motorcycle Mania

I like to look at the big bikes, but I had a lot of fun on a small/mid 1983 Honda 400 when I was in college. It got me to school very efficiently (it is legal to split lanes on the freeway in CA--not very smart, I swore I'd never do it--but I succumbed quickly when faced with a 45 minute traffic delay every day). I think it made me a much better driver, as I learned there's nothing too stupid for others to do.

Unless you are totally in love with the "Harley Mystique," (i.e. want to be noticed, like to be shaken, don't care about high cost for parts, etc) I believe the Japanese bikes are still the best bang for the buck.

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Re: Motorcycle Mania
Old 05-13-2006, 11:58 AM   #15
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Re: Motorcycle Mania

Excellent observation samclem, but donít forget the Italians, Germans, Indians, Russians and Brits.

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Re: Motorcycle Mania
Old 05-13-2006, 12:29 PM   #16
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Re: Motorcycle Mania

Quote:
Originally Posted by Non sequitur
Excellent observation samclem, but donít forget the Italians, Germans, Indians, Russians and Brits.
I can't forget the three shipmates who've spent a substantial amount of time in hospitals & rehab.

Both are otherwise mature, conservative, smart individuals.* One is a submariner who converted to meteorology (my spouse's expertise) and an expert homebrewer.* IOW, someone with whom we spent a lot of time in frosty-beverage occupational group therapy appraisals until his head injury permanently changed his personality.* Yes, he was wearing a helmet.* No, the other driver has never been identified.

The other shipmate's legs are both about a pound heavier, forecast the weather, and set off airport metal detectors.* Considering today's commodity prices he should worry about being worth more dead than alive.* He refuses to ride a motorcycle behind a car with a Hawaii license plate ever again (see the other thread on "sympathetic braking").

The third shipmate, something of a local military biker legend, is well on his way to having only one spinal vertebra as the doctors continue to fuse them into a single solid mass.* When he was on active duty he was one of the very few guys in Hawaii who was certified to teach the military motorcycle course. His bike doesn't just have loud pipes-- I think its muffler is actually an amplifier.* But it couldn't compete with the teenager who had his own amplifier cranked when he made an unexpected lane change.

I know that bad things can happen to good people and it's not limited to motorcycles, but these guys didn't have to ride for work or other commutes.* All of their very nice cars were in their garages, they were wearing all the recommended protective gear, and they were sober-- that's why they're living examples instead of under headstones.*

It's just that motorcycling seems to have a very high risk caused by placing your safety in the hands of other inattentive or incompetent drivers.* I've never looked up the stats but I bet it has one of the highest injury/death rates of any lifestyle activity.* HD should sell a t-shirt:* "WARNING:* Motorcycles can get you killed or injured even if it's not your fault.* But gosh, will you look cool!!"
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Re: Motorcycle Mania
Old 05-13-2006, 01:07 PM   #17
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Re: Motorcycle Mania



Assuming you are invisible isnít enough. If they donít know you are there, they canít TRY to kill you. You need to assume that the other vehicles are trying to hit you because sometimes they are. Avoid getting in the situation that requires depending on someone else to allow you to survive.

The only place that loud pipes have in a safety discussion is weather or not the noise infuriates someone enough to attack you. Excessive noise is one of the biggest problems facing the motorcycle industry today.

http://www.ama-cycle.org/

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Re: Motorcycle Mania
Old 05-13-2006, 01:10 PM   #18
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Re: Motorcycle Mania

My husband has had 3 motorcycle accidents, one hit head on, the second sideswiped by a guy that thought he wanted to take a left but went right, and the third was a bump from behind at a light that knocked the bike forward and over.

While seeing the surgeon ( a hand specialist) to fix his hand from the first accident (the head on) he was giving hubby a ration of crap about how dangerous riding a Harley was. Hubby was looking around the office while the doc blabbed on and on....he than asked him if those were him in the pictures. The dr happened to be a mountain climber, he had several pictures of himself hanging by ropes as well as a pic of himself at the top of Mt Everest ( I found out later my cousin was on that climb with him). When the dr said yes that was him in the pics my husband started giving him back exactly the same thing only about climbing mountians with nothing but a rope to save you. The doc shook his hand (the uninjured one) and agreed they both had dangerous hobbies.

Oh and for the record, in the head on the only injury he sustained was a broken thumb and a slight concussion (yes he had all the protective gear on). The other accidents he was uninjured and we attribute that to his lifetime of experience riding.

No matter what you do for a hobby there are risks whether it's riding a bike, mountian climbing or heck even surfing



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Re: Motorcycle Mania
Old 05-13-2006, 01:21 PM   #19
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Re: Motorcycle Mania


More specific to the excessive noise issue.

http://www.amadirectlink.com/legislt...ions/noise.asp
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Re: Motorcycle Mania
Old 05-13-2006, 01:27 PM   #20
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Re: Motorcycle Mania

Quote:
Originally Posted by Non sequitur
"Live like you're dying, but invest like you're immortal.
We don't stop playing because we grow old.* We grow old because we stop playing"
I understand.

I think it's worth considering that in tae kwon do I only have to deal with one other clumsy uncoordinated idiot at a time-- besides myself.

When I'm surfing I don't have to watch out for other surfers unless I've invited them to join the party wave.

I also don't have to worry about mountain climbers dropping on my head, other hikers running into me from behind, home improvers attacking me with power tools, and so on.* There seem to be plenty of other ways to enjoy recreation, perhaps even with a dose of Disney danger, without having to defend your very life from a bunch of careless or clueless morons driving high-powered death machines over your underprotected & low-vis lightweight carcass.* I bet even recreational skydiving has a lower accident rate than motorcycles, not that I've researched the question.

I have to admit that this thread is appropriately titled.* And I think I'm just beginning to appreciate why I'm not bicycling so much any more...
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