DEAL'S GAP ON A GOLDWING

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TOP OF THE MOUNTAIN (TAIL OF THE DRAGON)

Sunday, October 5, 2008

HONDA TO OFFER HYBRID MOTORCYCLES IN 2011

Honda to offer hybrid motorcycles from 2011
Honda Motor Co. will start selling hybrid motorcycles as early as the mid-2010s, and with smaller electric motorcycles coming out as early as 2011, the automaker has announced.
The move is part of Honda's efforts to cope with rising gasoline prices and global warming by applying its 4-wheeled hybrid and battery technology to motorcycles.
Adding a hybrid engine and battery to a motorcycle's traditional internal combustion engine was thought to present too many engineering problems, not least that of size. However, Honda believes that it can shrink a hybrid engine enough to be mounted on a motorcycle frame.
The hybrid motorbikes will be available in engine displacements between 200 and 1,000 cc, and, according to Honda, will be 50 percent more fuel-efficient. Production costs will be cut by using common components in both hybrid cars and motorcycles.
Honda will also be producing a new line of electric scooters, and a successor to the Cub series motorbikes for commercial use, with an engine size of 50 to 125 cc.
Though with a limited range -- a smaller electric motorcycle will only be able to run about 30 kilometers on one charge -- fuel costs will be smaller than that of a gasoline motorcycle.
--
Correction: A previous version of this story incorrectly used the term "production" instead of "production costs."
Click here for the original Japanese story
(Mainichi Japan) September 28, 2008

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

V-FORCE BUILDS CUSTOM MOTORCYCLE FOR TAMPA BAY STORM AFL TEAM


DAYTONA, FLORIDA: FLORIDA BIKE WEEK SPARKS A NEW PROMOTION FOR V-FORCE CUSTOMS...
Right at the heels of a tremendous reception for Vinnie DiMartino and Cody Connelly's unveiling of the company's first bike build, V-FORCE 1, comes their First Corporate Themed Build also from the Sunshine State of Florida. V-Force Customs announced today the launch of their Second Custom Bike Build for the Tampa Bay Storm of the arena football league. Vinnie and Cody had a chance to connect with Storm Fans on March 7th, when they made an appearance on mid-field at half time to announce the build."The crowd's response was definitely overwhelming. I will carry over that energy to this build," says Cody. Vinnie and Cody have made the commitment with the Tampa Bay Storm, to unveil their second custom build at half time of the Storm's last home game of the year, June 21st, and will tour the Southeast motorcycle circuit until September 2009. All proceeds from this bike will be donated to Pinellas County Human Society and Shriners Hospital for Children.
"Unlike our first build V-FORCE 1, which was a combined effort of sponsors and will be given away at the end of the 2008 schedule, the Tampa Bay Storm is our first customer. Getting paid to build puts even more pressure on you to create something not only to satisfy our customer, but will have the look and feel of our company," Mr. DiMartino said.
To find out more about the Tampa Bay Storms Bike, visit: http://www.vforcecustoms.com or www.TampaBayStorm.com

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

FOUR RULES TO BUY YOUR USED MOTORCYCLE ON E-BAY

Buying your first used motorcycle on eBay can be a little scary, but if you're careful enough you won't have any problems. I have bought 6 motorcycles through ebay auctions for me and for my family and never got any sort of problem. Just make sure you follow these guidelines and you will get your motorcycle in no time.
1. Don't be Afraid of the Seller
If you're going to buy a used motorcycle, then make sure you clear all your doubts and fears before perfoming the payment, because after that many people will stop caring and don't reply to you. Check his trade ratings, and most importantly pay attention to the negative feedback (if he has any). If you're still unsure, then e-mail to the users that gave negative feedback and ask for informations about the seller.
2. Ask For Updated Pictures of the Motorcycle
Lots of sellers like to include a photo when they first bought the motorcycle, which will be flawless. How many times people got their used motorcycle with a few damaged pieces and/or several scratches that weren't visible on auction picture? Make sure you ask him to take some photos from the motorcycle's tires, engine and wheels.
3. Make the deal inside eBay
Lots of scammers will ask you to settle things off eBay, often claiming they their private message inbox is full and it is quicker. Don't fall for it, because if the worst happens you won't catch him but if he tries to that on eBay, he will be punished.
4. Ask for a Copy of the Documents
This is just to make sure you don't hear "I already sent the documents, didn't you got them?". I always ask for a copy of the documents before performing the payment, that way if the guy tries to scam me, I have some information about him.
BY MIKE J.

Monday, March 24, 2008

The Natchez Trace (North Half)

If you like a leisurely, picturesque ride with a lot of interesting historic stops along the way, then you will love the north half of the Natchez Trace. Tennessee - One of my favorite places to ride is on the Natchez Trace Parkway, aka The Parkway or, more colloquially, simply The Trace.
I live south of Nashville, Tennessee, which is the northern end of The Trace. The entrance at the north end of The Trace (Mile Marker 444) is about a 15 minute ride from my home. There are a couple of exits in the first 10-15 miles that are only a half-hour from the house. So, I can take a quick, 1 to 1-1/4 hour ride and catch the breathtaking scenery in these first few miles, most notably, the Double Arch Bridge over Tennessee Highway 96 at Birdsong Hollow (MM 439). However, the scenery of these first few miles is only a portion of what you will find on The Trace.
Before you start out a journey on The Trace, you need to know a couple of things.
First of all, though there are many historic and scenic stops along The Trace, restroom facilties are very scarce. In fact, in the first 40 miles, there are only three rest stops with restrooms. Stop and take care of that urgent need before you get on The Parkway.
Second, there are no gas stations on The Trace. In fact, there are no gas stations at most exits on The Parkway. In some cases, you may have to drive 5-10 miles off the Natchez Trace in order to find petrol. You need to plan your ride carefully and know where you are going to stop to fill up. A miscalculation here could be very problematic.
There are also no inns, hotels or motels along The Trace. As with fuel, you'll have to know where you're going for lodging. There are three primitive campgrounds directly on The Parkway between Nashville and Natchez, but they are several hours apart and they are primitive.
Once you get on the Trace, you'll find lots of interesting place to stop and linger. The Tennessee Valley Divide at MM 423 is the point where you cross from the (edited)berland River Valley to the Tennessee River Valley. A few miles later there is a beautiful view of a rural valley from the Water Valley Overlook at MM 412. This is folowed by the Baker Bluff OVerlook at MM 406. and the Devil's Backbone State Natural Area around MM 395.
Continuing south on The Trace, you'll find one of my favorite stops, Fall Hollow (MM 393) where a creek cascades into a beautiful, 12-15 high waterfall. It's a little hike off the road, but well worth the walk. In the heat of summer and early fall, it is very cool under the trees by the waterfall, giving some much needed relief from the heat. If you are a bit more adventurous, you can follow the trail further down the hollow to another beautiful, dark, mossy waterfall that trickles down 20-30 feet over ancient rocks.
Next up is Meriwether Lewis Park, a primitive campground (i.e., no electricity, running water or hookups, though there are restrooms and a shower) and historic site. This is where Meriwether Lewis (of The Lewis and Clark Expedition) was mysteriously died in 1809 at Grinder's Stand. Ther is a monument here in his honor that was erected in 1848.
There are several more stops before you reach the Tennessee-Alabama border (MM341, 103 miles from the north end of the Parkway) after which there is an eleven mile stretch with no stops. The next stop, Rock Spring (MM330), has a nature trail that leads along a creek to a small swamp. I'd never seen a swamp before and found it very interesting. Lots of interesting plants can be found in the woods along the trail.
About a mile past Rock Spring, you will cross the Tennessee River. The Tennessee is wide here. The bridge is easily a half-mile long. The view of the river is beautiful. Just be sure you pay attention to your riding. Last summer, a friend decided to take a picture while riding over the bridge on his scoot and got dangerously close to the guard rails. He gave the rest of us a good scare that day!
Just on the other side of the Tennessee River is a rest stop at the old Colbert Ferry Site. The ferry has long since ceased operations, but there are restroom facilities here -- something you won't find at most stops.
There are two or three more stops in Alabama before you get to MM 310 and the Alabama-Mississippi state line. Just as you cross the state line, you'll find Bear Creek Mound, an old Indian burial mound, that I found fascinating. There's nothing there but some parking and the mound, but if you like Native American history, you might find this one interesting.
Just a quarter mile or so further on is Cave Spring, another site I found interesting. It's an underground spring where the roof of the cave that contained it has collapsed. You can walk down into the former cave and knock around a bit. Apparently, it was a watering hole for horses and livestock on The Trace in bygone days, but now the water is polluted and would make you pretty ill.
From Cave Spring, it's about 45 miles to Tupelo, home of Parkway Headquarters and the Tupelo Visitor Center. Along the way, you'll pass several scenic overlookcs such as Donivan Slough (MM 285), Twentymile Bottom Overloock (MM 278) and Dogwood Valley (MM275). Recreational areas off this section of The Trace include Tishomingo State Park and The Bay Springs Lake.
Tupelo is a thriving city and the birthplace of Elvis Presley. Last year in mid-August while on a weekend ride, my wife and I stopped in Tupelo the weekend of 30th Anniversary of Elvis' Death. There were people from all over the world in Tupelo to remember The King! We had a great time visiting with folks from around the globe in the hotel bar that night.
There are many hotels and campgrounds -- some with cabins -- in the greater Tupelo area. Some are easier to get to than others, but it's a great place to overnight if driving the full length of The Parkway. There are also numerous parks and historical sites such as the Tupelo National Battlefield, a Civil War site for American History buffs, and the Tombigbee National Forest.
If you want to get to the halfway point on The Natchez Trace, you'll need to continue down to MM 222, a rest stop where you can see the Old Trace running alongside the modern highway. Along the way, you will see the Hernando de Soto site and historic Indian sites such as the Chickasaw Village Site, Owl Creek Mounds and Bynum Mounds. There is also a very interesting site called Witch Dance.
The southern half of The Natchez Trace is another 222 miles of beautiful park and highway that takes you all the way to historic Natchez, Mississippi, on the Mississippi River.
If you want to ride from Nashville down to MM 222 and back, you need to plan a minimum of two days. Tupelo is a good place to stop and spend the night. A two-day ride, won't give you a lot of time to stop along the way and see the sights. You might need a third day for the trip to really enjoy the wonders of The Natchez Trace.
Riding the full length of the trace is a minmum two-day trip just in one direction. Down and back is a four to six day trip.
Whatever part of the Parkway you decide to ride, get a map of the Natchez Trace Parkway and good maps of Tennessee, Alabama and Missippi. You'll may also need to talk to someone who has made the ride before and can tell you where to find fuel, food and lodging. If you plan your trip well, this is one of the best rides in this part of the country.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Building, riding motorcycles gives man perspective on life

Vincent Hann loves the feel of the open road, the wind in his face, danger nearby.
"Floating 6 inches off the road, I look down and watch it pass by under my feet and realize I'm close to death," he said.
Hann, 38, who lives near Spring Ridge, has been riding a motorcycle almost every day for 23 years, through rain, snow and even a flash flood one time near Point of Rocks, he said. He takes weeklong trips on back roads carrying little more than tools, racking up about 50,000 miles a year on his bike. He's even built his own chopper.
Hann doesn't like to be labeled a biker though, or a rebel. And he's no weekend warrior, sporting a $20,000 Harley-Davidson when the weather is sunny and warm.
His father, who Hann said could build anything, including the house near Spring Ridge where his mother lives, started him out on his own motorcycle at the age of 15.
His father taught him to ride and how to fix and build his own parts, but also encouraged him to channel his creativity.
Hann graduated from Gov. Thomas Johnson High School's gifted and talented program in visual and performing arts in 1987.
He painted and sculpted in school, and the inspiration to work on metal grew as an expression and extension of varied interests, Hann said.
In the late '80s, Hann, a metal worker who also teaches a medieval German martial art featuring swordplay called Kunst Des Fechtens, began to forge his own weaponry alongside parts to customize motorcycles. Hann said he has "chopped" almost every bike he has owned.
"Chopping," or modifying manufactured motorcycles so that only the essential parts remain, enhances speed and agility in addition to style, Hann said. The term harks back to the period after World War II, when pilots returning home bought Harley-Davidsons, which were less exclusive then, and stripped them.
They had been accustomed to traveling precariously at high speeds, and sought ways to relive the experience on fast, light motorbikes.
Working with stock motorcycles limits what can be changed, Hann said, from the design of a frame, to the way the wiring is hidden behind plastic panels.
"Mass production breeds compromise," Hann said.
One advantage, though, is that chopping a pre-made bike -- tweaking it here or there, depending on what he needed -- allowed him to ride every day.
Building a chopper from the ground up, a task he started in 2005, meant he couldn't ride until he finished.
It took him two years, and Hann said he almost couldn't handle it, but the sacrifice provided incentive and was worth the reward, Hann said.
There were no limitations, Hann said. He used his driveway as a workshop, setting up a metal table, a welder and an antique lathe, to machine all of the foot pegs and handlebars. He made the parts, assembled them and then took them apart to repaint and polish.
Hann's chopper has a "hard tail," or no rear suspension, a "suicide shifter," or hand-operated stick shift instead of the usual toe shifter, and a sloping, protracted front wheel without brakes that helps him see and feel each contour of the road.
"A lot of people build bikes to impress other people," Hann said. "I just want to feel happy when I ride it, and I do."
He said the bike turns a lot of heads, and he's spent as much as half an hour explaining details of its construction.
"It's really cool the people you get to meet," Hann said.
His brother, Shane Hann, a professional painter, helped him detail parts for his motorcycle, and they have discussed opening their own shop.
Hann isn't sure though, and said he also wants to start a Kunst Des Fechtens school in Frederick.
Mostly, he enjoys the perspective on life he gets from riding his chopper.
People are separated from nature in their cars, and feel impervious, Hann said. On a motorcycle, everything appears bigger -- the lanes and road -- and the rider is not isolated from the elements.
"You realize how small you are," he said.

Motorcycles are looking more human

Misty Harris , Canwest News ServicePublished: Wednesday, March 12, 2008
If you think the motorcycle approaching in the oncoming lane is glaring at you, you're not paranoid - you're seeing cutting-edge safety research in motion.
Honda Motor scientists studying the way the brain reacts to different imagery found that motorcycles that resemble a human face - especially an angry one evoked with diagonal headlights - are "significantly" more visible to other drivers. Measurements taken with functional magnetic resonance imaging confirm that a more lifelike front-end design "elicits a response similar to that when a human face is seen," suggesting that other drivers will more quickly recognize the motorcycle's presence and react accordingly.
Elements of this method of "conspicuity enhancement," as researchers call it, can be seen in Honda's ASV-3 motorcycle as well as newer sportbike models such as the 2008 CBR 1000RR, which features twin slanted headlights and an abbreviated nose.
Researchers say motorcycles that resemble a human face - especially an angry one evoked with diagonal headlights - are more visible to other drivers.
Handout

"People in four-wheeled vehicles will see not just motorcycles coming at them but motorcycles with human characteristics and faces," says Charles Kenny, president of Right Brain People, a consumer psychology firm specializing in motor vehicles.
"It connects to something very basic in the psyche that goes back to when they were little children."
By way of example, Kenny points to the Disney movie Cars, and to kids' toys such as Thomas & Friends trains, both of which cause youngsters to emotionally identify with inanimate objects.
Katherine Sutherland, an expert on motorcycle culture, says the humanizing of motorcycle design reflects a cultural shift in which people see technology as an extension of themselves.
"The distinction between machine and body is becoming less clear," says Sutherland, associate dean of arts at Thompson Rivers University in British Columbia. "You're not a passenger in a motorcycle. You're actually manipulating it with your body."
Honda's study findings wed perfectly to a prevailing design Zeitgeist in which motorcycles appear livelier than ever, with front-end styling so expressive you'd be forgiven for suspecting the growling machines were sentient.
Major manufacturers such as Suzuki, Kawasaki, Honda, Yamaha, Buell, Triumph and Ducati all feature 2008 sportbikes fitted with menacing cat's eye headlights redolent of James Cagney on a bad day. Dozens more models radiate aggression through other design cues. The wide tank and narrow seat of the muscular Monster 696, for instance, gives the two-wheeled beast the appearance of a boxer.
Yamaha's FZ1 is being called the "ultimate street brawler" thanks partly to its lean silhouette and slanted twin headlights. Triumph's Street Triple was recently described by the Los Angeles Times as "a Marlon Brando of a bike that comes off the line with its fists swinging." And Ducati's much-anticipated 1098R is a bike so ferocious you can almost see its fangs.
"The sportbike community really wants an aggressive, hard-edged design," says John Paolo Canton, spokesman for Ducati North America. "Nobody wants to buy a 300-km/h motorcycle that looks cute."
Motorcycle use in Canada is at a two-decade high, with 485,000 registrations in 2006 (the latest year for which data is available), up from just 274,000 in 1999. Riders, however, represent a disproportionately large number of the country's serious motor vehicle injuries (8.7 per cent) and fatalities (7.6 per cent), emphasizing the need for safety and awareness among all road users.
"Perhaps most importantly, aggressively styled motorcycles look intimidating to the rider - like something you have to learn to operate," says Thompson Rivers' Sutherland. "Whereas a scooter is so friendly and cute that people think they can just hop on them and drive."
mharris@canwest.com

Thursday, March 6, 2008

V-FORCE CUSTOMS BUSINESS LAUNCH A BIG SUCCESS

V-Force Customs Business Launch a Big Success



Inaugural Bike to be unveiled @ River Front Park on Beach Street (across from the Harley Davidson dealership) Saturday, March 1st at noon
Rock Tavern, New York – 8 February 2008
Vinnie DiMartino and Cody Connelly owner, operators of V Force Customs kicked off their 2008 Rally Tour at the VTwin-Expo in Cincinnati, making their first appearance since leaving the popular television series American Chopper.
“We could not have asked for a better platform to unveil our new venture,”DiMartino said. “The Expo provided us two days to meet and greet oldfriends and to make new ones.” “The support from the public and the offerswe received from manufacturers and trades was over whelming,” Connellyadded.DiMartino and Connelly are now putting the finishing touches on the“Inaugural Bike,” which is to be unveiled at noon on Saturday March 1, 2008during the 2008 Daytona Beach Bike Week. The event will occur at RiverFront Park on Beach Street across from the Harley Davidson dealership.
Attendees will have the opportunity to enter towin the Inaugural Bike, which will be awarded to one lucky winner thefollowing year at Daytona Bike Week, 2009.DiMartino, Connelly and the Inaugural Bike will be at River Front Parktogether with Rob Hassay’s “Pro Tour Truck” beginning Saturday, March 1through March 8, 2008, from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., located between Hwy 92and Main Street Bridge. Visit www.VForceCustoms.com for an up-to-date eventschedule at Daytona Beach Bike Week.
After Daytona Beach Bike Week, V Force Customs, Rob Hassay’s “Pro TourTruck”, and BikerDATA.com will take the “Inaugural Bike” on a ten-rallytour. As with Bike Week, people will be able to enter to win the InauguralBike at each event. Visit http://www.vforcecustoms.com/ for the latest information about the company and the Inaugural Bike tour. For questions, interviews, appearance bookings and sponsorship opportunities contact:Jeff Bartucci

FOR ALL YOUR MOTORCYCLE APPAREL AND ACCESSORIES

CHECK OUT THIS SITE: WWW.TWOWHEELSTUFF.COM

HONDA'S GOLDWING FACTORY TO CEASE PRODUCTION IN U.S.

HONDA has announced that all motorcycle production in its Marysville plant is to be moved to Japan, marking the end of almost thirty years of Goldwing production in the plant.
Opened in 1979, the Ohio factory currently builds 120 Goldwing and VTX models every day, but production of the motorcycles is due to move to Honda's new Kumamoto plant in 2009, where other bikes currently built in the Hamamatsu factory will also be built.
The Marysville plant will continue to build Honda's other products, and all staff will be moved onto new production lines negating the need for layof

KYLE PETTY TO RIDE MOTORCYCLE TO FIRST FOUR RACES OF THE SEASON

Editor's Note: The following is the first of a three-part series chronicling Kyle Petty as he rides a motorcycle to the first four races of the season, with two scheduled trips to Phoenix in between. Part 1 details his trip from Daytona to Fontana with good friend Ken Schrader.
Kyle Petty always has a lot on his plate, and even more on his mind.
But for his latest "tickler project" -- a proposed book detailing a motorcycle trip between every track on the Sprint Cup circuit -- Petty's already put a huge dent in the thousands of miles that such a project would involve.
Like, how about a shot at more than 7,000 miles in just three weeks?
"... it wasn't like we'd planned ahead ... we'd just ride ... we went until it got cold or we got tired."
KYLE PETTY
"This is the deal," Petty said last week from Fontana, Calif. "What I want to do is -- and I've said this 10 million times -- but I want to ride [a motorcycle] to every racetrack. Just ride as much as I could."
The current odyssey began when Petty and fellow NASCAR veteran Ken Schrader rode from Daytona International Speedway, cross-country to Fontana. Despite the miserable weather NASCAR encountered at the Auto Club Speedway, less than one day of their four on the road west was blotted by rain.
"It's been good -- I enjoyed it," Petty said about 20 hours after arriving in California. "It's the first time I've ridden a Harley in a while, because I've been riding Victory motorcycles, but Kenny and I had a good trip."
California was a rough weekend on the racing side, for both men. When qualifying was rained out, Schrader's No. 49 BAM Racing Dodge team was a victim of the rule book's qualifying parameters and he was a non-starter. But he hung out and was still in Fontana on Sunday.
Petty had mechanical issues in the Auto Club 500 and ended up finishing 38th. So for him, hitting the road again was a salve for those bruised feelings, with neither the book, nor his every waking minute consumed with racing.
"What I've really been thinking about doing is basically riding to the racetrack and just writing down stuff -- just halfway writing a book, you know what I mean?" Petty said. "To be honest with you, I'm halfway writing a book about just riding a motorcycle to the racetrack and meeting race fans and riding with guys like Kenny Schrader.
"I'm not writing about anything that goes on around the racetrack, because that's not my forte -- it's not what I do. I just want to do like a journal of what I experience."
Before the season began Petty, the owner/driver of Petty Enterprises' No. 45 Dodge, had a fund-raising commitment for the Victory Junction Gang Camp for chronically and critically ill children that he and wife, Pattie, operate in Randleman, N.C.
That kept him from riding his bone-stock, 500-miles-from-new Harley-Davidson Classic to Daytona Beach for Speedweeks.
But from there, a sizeable chunk of the book's first piece is in progress for Petty and his sidekick for at least part of that first section, fellow motorcycle aficionado Schrader. (Continued) CHECK OUT THE REST OF THE STORY AT WWW.NASCAR.COM.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

MAN BUILDS ALCOHOL POWERED MOTORCYCLE

Media Credit: Andrea Caldwell
Chuck Gratzle with his alcohol powered motorcycle. Thursday in the Agri shop. He built the motorcylce himself. His bike currently runs on gas and alcohol, but hopes to run it completely on alchohol.With the price of gasoline going up for a multitude of reasons, what options do we have? We could use ethanol but who really wants make all that corn? According to Chuck Graztle an agriculture education major, there's a gas alternative that Americans can be using right now with all the garbage we create. Alcohol. Graztle used this idea and converted his motorcycle so that it could run off alcohol. "We're in trouble," said Graztle referring to America and its high independence of gasoline. He believes that if the technology is out there to use something else other than gasoline, we should. An ancient form of fuel energy, alcohol was once gasoline's biggest competitor. According to Graztle people used alcohol gas a lot during the depression because it was cheaper to make and anyone could make it. "They used alcohol to run the model T, stoves, even curly irons," said Graztle. "That was the early fuel, an ancient technology." Graztle started his project for an Agriculture class, and it took him three months to build an engine that would run off alcohol. Now Graztle uses both alcohol and gasoline to run his bike. "Hopefully soon I'll be able to make my own alcohol fuel," said Graztle "you can it out of any trash or wood, and it doesn't take that much to convert an engine so that it can run off alcohol. But with the way cars are being made with plastic materials, there's no way they could run off alcohol fuel, because it would burn right through it. It would take a mileage surplus motor to run on alcohol fuel and the fuel must be 160 proof alcohols. Graztle said that the process of making the alcohol isn't fast, but believes that if you're running the steel 24 hours a day, it doesn't matter, and it would still be cheaper than gasoline. Graztle believes that one day gasoline prices will go so high, it won't be affordable, "I can see some disaster, not just a war, but a natural disaster, that will make gas prices go sky high." Not only would gas prices for cars go up but also the price of farming, heating homes, and buying grocery would increase, because gasoline affects everything. But what else could cause gas to become unaffordable? Now that China is beginning to produce more cars and is using gasoline at a growing rate, could having them as a gasoline competitor hurt the gasoline market for America. Graztle believes yes. "There are people out there that don't like us," said Graztle, referring to Middle Eastern countries that produce most of the world's oil and who the U.S. gets most of its oil from. But not only alcohol a great alternative because of rising gas prices, but it's better for the environment, because it burns cleaner than gas does. Graztle believes the only reason why the government and car companies aren't pushing alcohol fuel, is because the fact that the government won't be able to charge people for making it themselves.Some countries have already caught on the benefits of alcohol fuel, such as Brazil who after having a 1970s oil crisis, disrupted the abundant supplies of sugar cane. What will it take for the U.S. government to see the benefits of alternative gas options? Graztle believes it will be more expensive for the government to convert if there is a disaster in the future and believes that many people will miss out because of that. "Let's start using this technology now before we're forced into it."

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

BODY ARMOR FOR GASOLINE POWERED INSANITY

Tuff-n-Lite Apparel
2008-02-19 08:21:44 - Textile Research and Development company, Supreme Corporation®, of Conover North Carolina introduced a new cut, slash and abrasion protective apparel to the motorcycle industry. The product, Tuff-n-Lite® is presently one of the strongest materials in the World.
Tuff-n-Lite® is ounce for ounce 15 times stronger than steel with the comfort and flexibility of cotton. Senior Account Executive, Walter Schulein, says 'unlike commonly used aramids, Tuff-n-Lite® will not sacrifice its strength when wet or exposed to sunlight. It is also not affected by disinfectants, laundering, perspiration or common household bleaches.' Their clothing line includes shirts, pants, and leather

bonded Tuff-n-Lite which offers 7 times more cut resistance than standard leather and up to 10 times more abrasion resistance than carbon steel.The Insurance Information Institute reports that 4,798 people died in motorcycle crashes in 2006. About 88,000 motorcyclists were involved in crashes in 2004. A safety product like Tuff-n-Lite® is well past due in the motorcycle market.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

PARKER MOVES INTO MORE HONDA GEAR

Parker Moves Into More Honda Gear by staff Wednesday, February 06, 2008
This just in from Parker Synergies:
GOLD WING: THE POWER AND THE GLORY
Bruce Parker, President of Parker Synergies, is pleased to announce an expanded licensing agreement with American Honda Motor Co., Inc., of Torrance, California. The agreement calls for Parker Synergies to design, manufacture and market Honda Gold Wing branded motorcycle apparel with Tucker Rocky, of Fort Worth, Texas, as the exclusive distributor.
"The new Gold Wing branded apparel is an exciting evolution of our existing licensed collection", said Parker. "It's certainly going to compliment the innovative Project H gear and marketing initiative."
"The Gold Wing market is a very important component of our overall licensing strategy," said Danny Fujimori, Manager, Honda Genuine Accessories and Licensing. "We expect that the new Parker Synergies licensed products will be a great addition for our Gold Wing riders."
"The Parker Synergies products, like Project H, have brought a great revival to our Official Licensed Honda program," said Tim Prichard, Vice President of Sales and Marketing, Tucker Rocky Distributing. "We now look forward to continued success, in the premium Gold Wing market."
Look for the 2008 Officially Licensed Honda apparel by Parker Synergies, The Project H CBR motorcycle and the roll out of the Gold Wing collection at the Tucker Rocky Distributing booth, during the Indy Dealer Trade Expo February 16 - 18, 2008.

THE 2008 GREAT AMERICAN MOTORCYCLE SHOW

The 2008 Great American Motorcycle Show is cruising intoThe North Atlanta Trade Center in NorcrossFebruary 8-10, 2008
WE ARE BACK AND BIGGER THAN EVER!
Don't Buy Anything Motorcycle Related Until You See This Show!2008 Will Have More Bikes & Entertainment Than Ever!
Since 1992, The Great American Motorcycle Show has been the place to buy a new motorcycle and the accessories you need. The show is full of 2008 motorcycles brought to you by Georgia's leading dealers.
See foreign and domestic motorcycles, one of a kind custom bikes, cruisers, choppers, and touring bikes. Get great deals on motorcycles, trailers, tow vehicles, ATVs, scooters, LED lights, detail products, patches and sewers, riding glasses, helmets, resorts, seat cushions, accessories, custom chrome & paint, insurance, jewelry, cold weather wear, gloves, wheels, tires, boots, security, motorcycle rental, garage gear, seats, apparel and more to get you on the open road in style no matter what you ride.
Meet the bike builders and listen to great southern rock. Bring the entire family and come see over 120,000 s.f. of bikes and accessories. Park in the secure bike corral and check your helmet at the March of Dimes Coat Check. No matter what you ride, this is the show to see!

Thursday, January 31, 2008

NEW LAND SPEED RECORD ON A MOTORCYCLE

New Land Speed Record - Recorded by nNovia Solid State QC Deck
01 February, 2008 09:00:00
The nNovia QC deck was at the heart of the on-board recording system used to record cockpit video for the 3 fastest motorcycle streamliners in the world. Held at the 2006 International Motorcycle Land Speed Trials at the Bonneville Salt Flats in Utah USA, the 16 year old motorcycle land speed record of 322 MPH was broken twice with the final record being set by Chris Carr driving Denis Manning’s “7” streamliner. The Manning liner averaged 350.8 MPH for a two way run on the 11 mile course. The history making event was recorded by the production crew from IGNITION 3 with a dozen cameras, three of which were in the cockpits of the streamliners.
The new nNovia QC deck equipped with a new 8GB solid state cartridge captured the video in one of the harshest of environments possible. At these speeds vibration from the engine and the chassis are so extreme that recordings from hard disk or tape are inadequate. “We teamed up with nNovia because we knew conventional recording hardware was not going to work, whether tape or hard drive, the vibration would cause dropouts” said Producer Dick Lague. “Two years ago when we first started talking, CEO, Larry Aubry wanted to try some new solid state ideas. We tried the first prototype in Australia in March 2006 and it showed great promise. When the big showdown of the 3 liners happened in September the new nNovia QC model allowed us to get reliable results in a very harsh environment. We don’t know of any other way we could capture this footage. The nNovia QC was a miracle for us.” Lague continued to say. In the fastest run of the meet, Sam Wheeler’s E-Z Hook liner was doing more that 355 MPH when a front tire blew. The camera captured the tire blowing and the extreme vibration as the tire came apart at that speed. In spite of the camera getting a severe shaking, the video does not have a single drop out.
The on-board footage will be part of the "World's Fastest Motorcycle", a two segment show to be aired on the SPEED channel on December 3rd and 10th of 1006. A DVD is also planned for release in early 2007 IGNITION3 IGNITION3 is a production company specializing in motorsports video production. They have been working for over 2 years on this project of documenting the 3 teams whose goal it is to set a new motorcycle land speed record. From the beginning, cockpit video was deemed an important element in telling the story of what it is like to go 350 MPH. nNovia’s new QC Deck was the key element to being able to get this critical footage.
About G.D.B. International G.D.B. International is an Australian direct importer and national distributor of specialist video and multimedia products. Established in 1995, the company services the multimedia market and the consumer, semi-professional and broadcast video markets in Australia. We represent a number of well-recognised manufacturers of quality products such as Boxx Microwave Systems, Datavideo, nNovia, Audavi, Azden, Kramer and Fast Forward. Our products are centrally warehoused in Canberra and are distributed throughout all states of Australia.

Monday, January 28, 2008

VINNIE AND CODY WHERE ARE THEY NOW?

Where are they now?



Where are they? Very simply, they are following their dream. Vinnie and Cody are still together preparing for their dream team journey into the world of custom bike building.
The emergence this past summer of Vinnie’s new company, V-Force Customs, will be another strategic competitor in a fast growing field of custom chopper design...
V-Force, a stand alone company, is ready for the challenge.
The new corporate headquarters for it's office and fabrication plant is located in Rock Tavern, Orange County, New York.
The magnificent team remains intact and currently involved in negotiations, strategies and designs. “There is such passion and excitement in the air. The encouragement from our team, our families, our fans, and our clients has been overwhelming. Cody and I are very lucky and grateful to have such support. We can’t thank every well-wisher enough,” said Vinnie.
We want our bikes to be one of a kind. We want our bikes to fulfill your dream and take you on a legendary journey.
Our custom bikes will be passed down from generation to generation.
“Feel the force, ride the power, take the journey… V-Force Customs “

FOR ALL YOUR MOTORCYCLE APPAREL AND ACCESSORIES

CHECK OUT THIS SITE-- HTTP://WWW.TWOWHEELSTUFF.COM

Sunday, January 27, 2008

THE HISTORY OF OUTLAW MOTORCYCLE CLUBS by Tom Wheeler

Outlaw motorcycle clubs have existed almost since the origin of motorcycles. Almost as soon as motorcycles began production in the early twentieth century, clubs began emerging around the United States, although the outlaw label would come about later. These clubs brought together motorcycle enthusiasts for rides and other events.
One of the first long lasting motorcycle clubs to emerge was the McCook Outlaws in 1936. The group would later be called the Chicago Outlaws and is now known as the Outlaws Motorcycle Club. The group supposedly formed for long distance touring and racing. Alcohol consumption and partying were secondary, but important, reasons as well.
With the end of World War II in 1945, young soldiers returned home looking for more adventure. Veterans often sought other war survivors out for companionship and understanding and the lure of motorcycle riding became entwined in some of these relationships. The American Motorcycle Association or AMA sponsored many clubs during the post war years.
In the late 1940s, after a disturbance in the town of Hollister, California, some individuals responded to a Life article by stating that the disorder was due to only a small percentage of the motorcyclists there. The statements seemed to many to have come from the AMA and some biker clubs broke away from the organization. Clubs not associated with the AMA would come to be known as the One Percenters or outlaw clubs.
Outlaw motorcycle clubs started emerging all over the United States and included clubs like the Bandidos Motorcycle Club, the Pagans Motorcycle Club, and the Hell's Angels Motorcycle Club. With the arrival of the Vietnam War, the clubs experienced sharp increases in membership as disenfranchised veterans found acceptance and solace in the clubs.
The influx of Vietnam vets also brought drug culture into the clubs, as many soldiers had been introduced to illegal drugs in Asia. The clubs received negative labels from the outside and were often targeted by law officials. Hollywood presented a number of movies that built on this negative, violent perception. A sub-culture developed surrounding the groups. Many members of the outlaw clubs insist that illegal activity happens with only a small percentage of the members and shouldn't be used to label everyone.
While places like Canada have seen more violence and illegal drug activities in recent years (in what is known as the Quebec Biker War), perception in the United States has seem to shift somewhat. Popular television series, like Monster Garage, portray members of an outlaw motorcycle club in a more favorable light.
Outlaw motorcycle clubs have an important place in the history of the twentieth century. Although their image has not always been positive, the sub-culture of the clubs has influenced American culture.
About the Author
Two good places to find reliable motorcycle transport companies are a Harley Davidson enthusiast magazine and Big Cycle Pro. Check both to start your search.

V-FORCE CUSTOMS TO UNVEIL FIRST CUSTOM BIKE DURING DAYTONA BIKE WEEK

V-Force Customs To Unveil First Custom Bike During Daytona Bike WeekPublished by Cyril Huze January 12th, 2008 in Editorial, Customs and Builders.
Vinnie DiMartino and Cody Connelly, founders of V-Force Customs, will introduce their first custom bike since leaving the popular television series “American Chopper” when they appear at Daytona bike week February 29, 2008. DiMartino and Connelly will begin a year-long 12-rally tour when they join Rob Hassay’s ProTour on February 2nd in Cincinnati, Ohio at the V-Twin Expo. Company plans to give away bike to one lucky winner after year-long inaugural rally tour.. “This gives Vinnie and me our first chance to get away from the shop but more importantly it allows us to visit with everyone and personally thank and shake their hands” Connelly said. “Then we’ve got to rush back to the shop to get the bike finished for Daytona,” DiMartino added. At each event people can register to win this inaugural bike, which will then be awarded to one lucky winner at Daytona bike week, 2009. To learn more about V-Force Customs, get updates on personal appearances and list of sponsors of this first bike, visit. V-Force Customs

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

THERE'S NO RIDE LIKE THE ONE FROM MIAMI TO KEY WEST

Two years ago this spring my wife and I and another couple left our homes in Georgia and headed South down the Florida coastline on the Pacific side all the way to Alligator alley,and then straight across the bottom of Florida to Miami. We picked up U.S.1 and rode all the way to Key West. First of all Ive got to say there's nothing like traveling on a Goldwing and we definitely let the big dog eat, day after day we burnt the hi-way and the big wing just took it in stride. But back to my point, there is no road any better or more awe inspiring than the road from Miami to Key West, if you ever get the chance to take the trip on a motorcycle, do it, their is nothing better in my opinion, I love riding in the mountains and I really love the Blue Ridge Parkway but nothing compares to the beauty of the road to Key West. I plan on doing it again one day and I look forward to that day. I hope you enjoy the article below and if you ever get the chance take this ride you'll remember it forever.

THE OVERSEAS HIGHWAY: MIAMI TO KEY WEST

The Overseas Highway, the southernmost leg of U.S. Highway 1 and sometimes called the Highway That Goes to Sea is a modern wonder. The road, that follows a trail originally blazed in 1912 by Henry Flagler's Florida East Coast Railroad, stretches from Miami to Key West.
The railway ceased operation after severe damage to the infrastructure in a 1935 hurricane. Construction of the highway began in the late 1930s. Its foundation included some of the original railway spans as well as the coral bedrock of individual keys and specially constructed columns.
When it was completed in 1938, the highway marked the beginning of an incredible adventure for the North American motorist who travel 113 miles of roadway and cross 42 bridges to travel from Miami to the southernmost point in Key West. In 1982, 37 bridges were replaced with wider spans, including the well-known Seven Mile Bridge at Marathon.
In 2002 the Florida Keys Overseas Heritage Trail was added, which includes the Grassy Key Bikeway. Spanning mile markers (MM) 54.5 to 58.5 bayside, the eight-foot-wide Grassy Key Bikeway is landscaped and furnished with a split-rail fence as well as bollards to prohibit automobile access.
The Heritage Trail is a paved recreational path along old Flagler railroad bridges and the Florida Department of Transportation right-of-way that features crossways between bayside and oceanside. Stretching from MM 106.5 to MM 0, the trail includes interpretive trailheads designating attractions and other public areas on and off U.S. Highway 1 – as well as benches, an art bicyle rack and a limestone column sign with an Overseas Heritage Trail map.
Today, motorists can travel the highway in less than four hours from Miami. However, drivers should allow time to experience the natural beauty of the ever-changing scenery of the seas and wilderness bordering the roadway, and the magnificent sunrises and sunsets.

Monday, January 21, 2008

MOTORCYCLE LENDERS WHERE ARE THE BEST ONES FOR THE NEW YEAR by Jay Fran

In 2007, the motorcycle financing market faced some pressure mainly due to banks tightening as a result of the sub-prime mortgage crisis. But heading into 2008 will things get better? Not likely, if you look at the future of mortgage foreclosures. The first quarter of 2008 looks to be worse which will squeeze banks and make the motorcycle loan market tougher.
If you are a motorcycle buyer in the New Year expect the ease of motorcycle financing to not be so easy anymore. There will be lenders still offering motorcycle loans but these loans will be much more restrictive than in the past. Expect higher interest rates and if you have had credit issues your loan may be a little harder to obtain. Therefore, it is important to get your credit cleaned up if you have had any issues in the past. Also try to minimize the outstanding debt you have showing on your credit report. This will help you when bank look at your credit report and determine if you are a good or bad credit risk.
In 2008, Fair Isaac will roll out a new credit scoring model that will help you if you have been recently current on your loans and credit card payment. However, you should not expect this new credit card scoring model to be used with motorcycle loans anytime in the near future. With motorcycle and auto loans banks normally take some time before they adjust their scoring model to the new credit scoring model. In addition banks are having tons of trouble with funding so before they implement any changes in credit scoring models they will address their funding issues. The bottom line is that in 2008 it will be more difficult to get motorcycle loans.
Online motorcycle loans may fair better than traditional banks. The reason being is that many of the online lenders do not have the substantial overhead that the local and big banks have. So they are more able to adjust to the changing circumstances. Also online motorcycle lenders did not face the huge exposure in the mortgage market because online motorcycle lenders are traditionally more specialized.
If you are declined for a motorcycle loan do not get discouraged, the motorcycle lenders in 2008 will likely vary quite a bit in their credit scoring. Many motorcycle buyers find themselves frustrated after a decline and forgo their dream of owing a motorcycle. Do not let this happen to you. It is not personal; the banks are a mess because the mortgage crises so if you get declined just try a new bank. Persistence will pay off and get the bike of your dreams.
With internet based motorcycle loans you will find that it is quick to submit an application and get a response. Also there is good communication from online motorcycle lenders so your service will be high quality. When you are approved for motorcycle financing online your funds arrive fast and you can get to the dealer quickly to pick up your bike.
You may find in 2008 that motorcycle lenders also force you to put money down for a motorcycle loan where in the past they were more willing to give you a zero down payment motorcycle loan. This is simply a reflection that the banks are way under funded and need to be very wise about their loans.
Losses to banks in general are higher this year versus last so banks may require insurance. Be prepared to get motorcycle insurance if you finance in the New Year and also look to make sure you can afford your bike and insurance. Late payments will result in higher repossession and lenders look to repo bikes faster in the New Year to off set losses. In general, a newer bike yields more used to lenders than older bikes.
If you want to ensure you get financing in the New Year, make sure you let the lender know you have money down, insurance, and clean up your credit. These 3 things can help the most. But this does not mean that if you have bad credit in the past you can not be approved, you will simply have to work harder.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

ACABION GTBO: THE 750BHP, 340MPH ENCLOSED MOTORCYCLE ENTERS PRODUCTION

Forever setting the "Which is faster? Bikes or cars?" debate is the Acabion GTBO. With a top speed of 340mph, it's a full 90mph faster than a Bugatti Veyron. It accelerates from 0 to 300mph in 30 seconds. Oh, and that top speed is limited, not what it'd be capable of reaching in perfect circumstances. Best of all, Acabion are ready to start production.
The GTBO is capable of more than just jaw-dropping performance figures. By employing low aerodynamic drag, low weight, and low rolling resistance, it's extremely economical, too. Cruising at 100mph it achieves 100mpg. At 250mph,25mpg.

The GTBO is the brainchild of Peter Maskus, who sees it as the ultimate long-distance transport solution. In the world Maskus envisions, we'll all be using solar-powered, electric mass-transit for short commutes, creating a need for ultra-fast, ultra-efficient, individual, inter-city, rapid-transpotation. The GTBO fills that need.

Maskus realizes that the GTBO could never exist in mass quanities in today's world; instead, he pictures the development of an integrated transport network making extremely high speeds both practical and safe. In the meantime, he's prepared to produce the GTBO in extremely limited quanities to further both innovation and awareness of his transport solutions.

If you want a GTBO now, it'll cost you. C1.87 million to be precise. Then there's the three-year wait--that's how long Maskus says it'll take to build one. [Via Hell For Leather]

DON'T USE LOCTITE ON PLASTIC SURFACES

Locktite is not right
Plastic on the Goldwing and several others reacts unfavorably to Locktite - Very much the same as putting ABS solvent on the material.
If your planning on adding fender extensions or other accessories use lock nuts or double stick tape not Locktite in the area that may come in contact with the Tupperware

SOUTHERN BAPTISTS USE MOTORCYCLE MINISTRY TO ATTRACT CONVERTS

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Sometimes it's hard to get bikers and NASCAR fans to dress up and attend church on Sunday morning.
So Southern Baptists are taking the Gospel to them, giving away free motorcycles at biker rallies and motor speedways as they try to attract new converts with a revved-up new style of evangelism.
Baptists in North and South Dakota for a second year in a row gave away a new Harley Davidson at the Sturgis, S.D., biker rally in August. To be eligible, people had to listen to a 3-minute sermon and fill out a card to get a raffle ticket.
"Just believing church is on Sunday or putting up a tent and holding a worship service and asking people to come, that at some point was a successful method. But over the years they have not been as effective," said Jim Hamilton, executive director of the Dakota Baptist Convention.
"When you have people seeing that bike and coming to you, there's a higher receptivity rate. They're more receptive to what you have to say."
Other events that attract hundreds of thousands of spectators — a NASCAR race in Bristol, races at the Texas Motor Speedway, and the Calgary Stampede Rodeo — have also proved fruitful conversion grounds.
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This year at the Sturgis event, which attracts close to half a million people, about 4,500 people listened to the sermon and 870 of those made a profession of faith. The year before 744 of the 2,500 who listened made a profession of faith.
It's more than even some Baptist officials expected.
"There were many people who said to us they thought people weren't interested in hearing about God at a motorcycle rally," Hamilton said. "We would have considered 50 or so a success. We were blown away by that many people responding."
The Sturgis idea was inspired by Ronnie Hill, a Southern Baptist minister from Fort Worth, Texas, who over the last several years has given away a new Harley and $10,000 in cash at NASCAR races in Bristol, Tenn.
Hill also brought a mechanical bull to the Calgary Stampede Rodeo in Canada and the Texas Motor Speedway, where people could ride the bull after listening to a 3-minute sermon. Hill takes pictures of the bull riders and posts them on his Web site, www.irodethebull.com.
After Dakota Baptists contacted Hill, he agreed to help train Baptist volunteers to conduct their own giveaway and has given Gospel presentations during the motorcycle rally both years.
Hill, 38, said he got the idea when he saw more than 160,000 people at the Bristol race.
"As an evangelist, when you see that many people, you just want to grab a microphone and preach the Gospel," Hill said.
"I don't want people to think that people are just giving their lives for Christ just to win something," he said. "We tell them this (making a profession of faith) is not going to help them or hurt them win. It's giving us an audience with them. We're just giving away Harleys and we're going where they're at."
At Sturgis, once people made a profession of faith, they were given a Bible and encouraged to find a church when they return home, Hamilton said. Their contact information was sent to the Southern Baptist's North American Mission Board to pass on to churches near the new believers' homes.
The Georgia, Oklahoma, South Carolina and Florida Baptist conventions partnered with Dakota Baptists this year by providing volunteers and helping cover expenses for the giveaway.
It cost about $13,500 to rent booth space for the week at Sturgis, and Hamilton said Baptists gave away a 2007 black Harley-Davidson DynaGlide. The bike retails for about $17,000, but Baptists got it for around $14,000.
Once a destination for Hell's Angels and other gangs, the Sturgis rally still has some rough customers, but they're outnumbered now by professionals and other white-collar bikers.
Hamilton said Southern Baptists for years have gone to Sturgis and handed out bottled water and offered to check for high blood pressure, and he thought it was time to be more direct in ministering to bikers.
Brenda Goodman and her two grandchildren met Hill last year at the Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth, where her 10-year-old grandson rode the mechanical bull.
Hill gave his Gospel presentation to the trio, and Goodman — who lives in the nearby suburb of Lewisville, Texas — said she made a profession of faith and promised to start going to church again after not attending for years.
"What really impressed me were these nice-looking young men out in a big field, out there trying to touch people's hearts, trying to get the message out of about God," she said. "They bring out the bull to get everybody's attention. But it's really about God.
"I don't think it matters what you use, as long as you touch people's heart with God. Whatever tool you can use ... if you're sincere about touching people's hearts with God, that's the important thing."

MUSIC CITY MOTORCYCLE SHOW AND EXPO

Music City Motorcycle Show and Expo at the Municipal Auditorium in Nashville, TN
If any of your dreams include 64,000 feet of incredible motorcycles and bike-related vendors, you'll definitely want to be on hand for the Music City Motorcycle Show and Expo at the Nashville Municipal Auditorium! Custom motorcycles and other high-speed vehicles including exotic cars, high performance boats and more will be featured. Custom bike builders will be on hand showing off their creations, while dealers and vendors showcase the newest trends in the industry! A bike show will determine winners and offer awards for the top bike in several classes, including Most Unusual, Chopper Manufacture, Custom Sportster, Pro Street Hand Built, Chopper Hand Built and more. You'll also be able to vote for the People's Choice Award, which includes a $10,000 Gibson guitar for the winner! Don't miss out on this exciting expo that features all thing motorcycle at the Nashville Municipal Auditorium

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

VINNIE AND CODY LEAVE OCC TO START V-FORCE CUSTOMS

American Chopper reality TV stars say goodbye to the Teutuls and venture out on their own. New York - American Chopper is more about the dynamics of the bonding or lack thereof between the father and son duo of Paulie and Paul Sr. The family builds custom motorcycles out of their Rock Tavern, NY shop. The daily life around the shop, as portrayed on the Discovery Channel show, is anything but boring, sometimes bordering on maniacal.Their success in the motorcycle industry is easily attributable to the show and it’s popularity. Companies can easily justify the price of an OCC bike with the added exposure on American Chopper. Some advertising executives see the bikes as an added bonus.The concepts of the bikes that OCC builds are usually born from creative mind of Paulie, the eldest son featured on the show. However, other shop employees, namely Vinnie DiMartino and Rick Petco along with the help of Cody Connelly, usually accomplish the fabrication necessary to translate Paulie’s concepts to steel. It is often said that OCC would fall apart if those three left.Now, we’ll see how true that statement is. Two of the three have moved on and left Rick to pick up the slack. Vince DiMartino and Cody Connelly have joined forces to start V-Force Customs in Rock Tavern, NY less than ten miles from their former employer.Vinnie left in early August of ’07 and Cody joined him a month later. The pair have no regrets.“When I realized that it was time to venture out, it was not an easy decision for me to leave,” says Cody. Vinnie says that his family has helped him realize what is important in life. While he enjoyed working at OCC he feels “it is time to move in a different direction.”“It is a big decision to make, but here I am, venturing out on my own with a great friend, Cody,” says Vinnie. Despite rumors that OCC shorted Vinnie of his due pay, he says that the split was on good terms and might actually air on an upcoming episode of the show.Cody stressed there is “no bad blood between us and our friends at OCC.”An OCC spokesperson would not comment on the departure saying that the shop is very busy wrapping up filming for next season and preparing for the grand opening of its World Headquarters in the Town of Newburgh. OCC is still seeking Vinnie’s replacement. A posting on OCC’s website for the pair’s replacements dated August 2, 2007 indicates that they have a need for multiple builders or that Vinnie and Cody were a very integral part of the fabrication process.Despite the dynamic portrayed on the show, Vinnie and Cody were actually good friends that dreamed of opening their own shop. “Vinnie and I worked together for five years, so there’s going to be sometimes where we argued. What they portrayed on the show isn’t really how we feel about each other,” says Cody. “They might 100 hours of tape and have to narrow that down to an hour long show. Of course they’re going to pick the juiciest parts. It makes for better TV!”Vinnie was actually a huge part of the development of Cody’s skills while at OCC. Cody says that about 90% of the mentoring he got at OCC was from Vinnie. “Vinnie and Rick both helped me learn a great deal,” he says.“Vinnie and I had many talks of doing our own thing,” says Cody. Cody actually cites that dream of moving out on their own as a major factor for leaving OCC. He is excited about the possibilities in store for him and his new business partner. “With the support of all my friends, family, my girlfriend Kaitlin, and the fans, we are following our dream and passion to make this a reality. With this new step, I look forward to taking my skills and experience to another level.”Vinnie shares his sentiment. “With the support of my family, my friends, and my fans, I am able to take this step, using my life experiences so far, in making this dream a reality.”They left OCC in August and they already have plans to unveil their first bike at the event that kicks off rally season, Bikeweek. Once they were out on their own they had solid plans to open V-Force Customs in about two weeks. “It’s been a whirlwind of activity, and we’ve been very busy,” says Cody.Vinnie and Cody will begin a yearlong 12-rally tour when they join Rob Hassay’s ProTour on February 2nd in Cincinnati, Ohio at the V-Twin Expo. “This gives Vinnie and me our first chance to get away from the shop but more importantly it allows us to visit with everyone and personally thank and shake their hands, ” Cody said. “Then we’ve got to rush back to the shop to get the bike finished for Daytona,” Vinnie added. Get the bike finished is an understatement. The inaugural bike, which will be awarded to one lucky winner at Daytona bike week, 2009 from all of the entries received on the 12 month tour, hasn’t even been started. “We’re still outfitting our shop,” said Cody during am interview on January 14, 2008. “The bike literally at zero percent completion.”They’re going to have their work cut out for them, as they have plans to unveil the bike at Bruce Rossmyer’s Destination Daytona during Bikeweek 2008.Here's the tour plans so far:
Feb 4-6 - V-Twin Expo in Cincinatti, OH
Feb 29 - Mar 9 - Daytona Beach Bikeweek (Bruce Rossmeyer's Destination Daytona)
April 23-27 - Laughlin River Run
May 1-4 Thunder Beach in Panama City Beach, FL
May 10-7 - Grand Strand Rally in Myrtle Beach, SC
June 16-22 - Laconia
June 30 - AMA 1/2 Mile Dirt Track in Lima, OH
Aug 2-9 - Sturgis
Oct 18-21- Daytona Beach BiketoberfestThis article contributed by dynamike on Monday, January 14, 2008 (12:40:15)

Thursday, January 10, 2008

MOTORCYCLE RIDERS PROTEST NEW HELMET LAW by Ken Luallen

RALEIGH, N.C. -- Around 50 motorcycle riders rumbled past the Governor's Mansion in Downtown Raleigh Tuesday to protest tougher helmet standards that took effect at midnight.

Discuss This Story"I don't believe the government has the power to attach an appliance to your body," said protester Lynn Lester of Goldston.Lester joined the riders in circling the mansion for ten minutes. They protest a new law that bans the road use of helmets that haven't received North Carolina Department ofTransportation certification. The change closes a loophole that left soft hats and scull caps as hard shell helmet alternatives."It doesn't matter if I'm wearing a helmet," said a rider from Holly Springs who declined to give his name because he was riding without head protection. "If something's going to happen it doesn't matter if I'm wearing a helmet."Lawmakers who passed the updated helmet law argued proper head protection does matter, cited years of studies that show helmets can prevent and minimize serious injury during a crash.North Carolina Highway Patrol spokesman Trooper J.E. Brewer said the new law simply clarifies the state's decades-old helmet requirement."Wearing a helmet has been the law but just wearing a helmet is not enough now," Brewer said. "It has got to meet the DOT standard."Many riders acknowledged helmets can lower their risk for injury, instead casting the issue as a fight for civil rights."Riding a motorcycle is not the safest thing in the world to do," said protest organizer Jan MacKay. "Neither is snow skiing. Skiers watch out, you're next."Raleigh police monitoring the 30 minute rally did not write any tickets for illegal headgear. Several riders said if they are cited they will continue to fight for their rights in court.It was not known whether Governor Mike Easley was present at the mansion during the afternoon protest

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

ROAR AT THE THUNDER BEACH SPRING MOTORCYCLE RALLY by Selene Marin

There's no roar louder than that of the upcoming Thunder Beach Spring Motorcycle Rally, rolling to you this May 1-4, 2008. Rushes of excitement inevitably fill the air of Panama City at the mere mention of one of the most anticipated motorcycle events of the year.
So what is it about this motorcycle rally that sends surges of adrenaline both to motorcycle riders and fans? Well, for one, this is held at the city known to be the ultimate Spring Break destination- Panama City . Second, being located at the south of Alabama , it has all the southern charms that people love. Third, this rally has tremendously exciting events lined up for all the participants and spectators.
This motorcycle rally is divided into five separate venues:
• Shops at Edgewater. This is where the Thunder Beach Spring Motorcycle Rally was born in 2002. Now, this has become the main part of the rally where major races and events take place.
• Boardwalk Beach . In this venue, you'll see and enjoy a stretch of a 1500 foot beach party pavilion with both indoor and outdoor vendors. This is also where the famous Miss Thunder Beach contest is held. And of course, don't forget to satiate your tummy with the sumptuous breakfast buffet that this part of the rally has to offer.
• Pier Park . At the Pier Park is where the largest mall in the country, the Mall of the Americas in Minnesota is being built. This is said to be the home to the bike builders and manufactures.
• The Spinnaker Beach Club. This is where you can take your bike for some dyno testing to see how well it performs. Aside from that, take a stroll along the 25,000 sq feet of vendors who are ready to take on all your biker needs.
• The Sandpiper Beacon Beach Resort. Here, you can sit back and relax at the TIKI BAR, where the Kick-Off night party with live bands happen.
Stopping by all these venues is necessary to get a full experience of the Thunder Beach Spring Motorcycle Rally. All these venues come with free parking, live entertainment and sell drinks at reasonable prices.
Some of the major highlights of events that you have to watch out for at this rally are the major motorbike races, best bike contest, tattoo contest, and poker runs. But the fun doesn't end in the rally itself. The nearby tourist attractions will add to the delight of your visit to the city even more.
For this major event, don't forget to don your motorcycle gear like your leather hat and leather jacket whether you're riding or not. This year, don't forget to include this motorcycle rally in the list of events you shouldn't miss.

Saturday, January 5, 2008

2008 MOTORCYCLE GUIDE

LOOKING TO MAKE THE MOVE TO TWO-WHEELED TRANSPORTATION? HERE'S THE SKINNY ON SOME TOP SELECTIONS IN THE CRUISER AND TOURING BIKE SEGMENTS. CHECK OUT THIS SITE:http://www.onwheelsinc.com/article.php?id=74

Thursday, January 3, 2008

HARLEY DAVIDSON IDLES 5400 WORKERS

Harley-Davidson Idles 5,400 Workers
Troy Siahaan
Rider Report
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Due to falling sales, this week Harley-Davidson is shutting down production plants in Wisconsin, Missouri and Pennsylvania, leaving 5,400 workers idle. The company announced the temporary layoff in September to give workers time to prepare for a week without pay. Company benefits, however, are not affected. According to Tom Boger, the business representative for the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers Local 175 union, workers in the Pennsylvania plant seem to be taking the shutdown rather well as it's a short layoff and they had time to prepare. "People seem to be OK with it," he said. "It seems to be just no problem."




The layoff coincidentally comes at the start of deer hunting season, giving idle workers time to hunt without sacrificing days off from work. Harley-Davidson's third-quarter profits fell 15.3 percent amid a lull in the U.S. motorcycle market. The company said it expects next year won't be much better as rising oil prices and declining home sales will leave domestic buyers more cautious about their spending. The company cut bike shipments and earnings expectations in September. Shipments were down 10.8 percent to 86,535 units in the most recent three-month period. The company expects full year shipments to be between 328,000 and 332,000 units, down from 349,196 units last year.
»More The Buzz

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

PACKING TIPS FOR A FUN MOTORCYCLING TRIP

After carefully planning your route, checking on the weather forecast and arranging the sights and activities you'll see and do, the next most important thing to do is to pack your things. Why is this of primary importance? Well, there's just nothing worse than a motorcycling trip gone wrong because of a flat tire or a busted engine because the weight of your pack cannot be accommodated by your bike.
Here are some packing tips you may find useful for your next biking trip:
Pack only necessary clothing. The weather forecast should give you an idea of the clothing items you should include in your pack. If you're in for some cold biking trip, of course, don't forget to pack your western jackets and other clothing items to keep you warm.
If you have to choose between two items of a similar purpose but the other one weighs heavier, your common sense would tell you to opt for the lighter one because that's the right choice. Remember, in a motorcycle trip, the key to packing properly is to pack light.
Pack things in small amounts. If you have to bring some medication or sunscreen lotion, transfer ample amounts sufficient for the duration of your trip in smaller containers rather than bring the whole big bottle.
Pack on sufficient energy bars, trail mix and water to keep your energy up and satiate your thirst. This is important especially during those times when the next convenience store is still many miles away.
Put heavier and more solid items on the bottom of your bike, closer to the side of the bike to centralize the weight while the lighter ones like pillows should always go on top.
It's best to always use saddlebags or tank bags but if you don't have that, you can also use bungee nets for your other items.
Follow your bike's load limits. Don't overload your bike because this will wear out the suspension, brakes and wheels, and make handling of the bike awkward.
Be sure to waterproof your luggage by lining it with plastic bags to keep it dry. Keep your rain gear in a place where you can easily get it when it suddenly rains.
Keep essential or emergency items like water bottle, cellular phone or maps in your right saddlebag because this is more accessible and the less urgent necessities like sleeping items and spare clothes at the left saddlebag. Reaching for the left saddlebag while you're on the run puts you closer to the opposite traffic.
Keep bags away from the exhaust pipe. Even the slightest touch with the pipe may cause for the bag to burn and you may find yourself with no extra clothes but just ashes to commemorate your things with.
Indeed, packing for a motorcycling trip entails a lot of effort since you only have limited space to store your things unlike when you're going on a car or RV trip. It is necessary that you are able to bring all your necessities without overloading your bike.