Cook, I'm afraid your misspent youth has come back to haunt you again. As you may have seen in the September issue, Harley-Davidson has come up with a 35th-anniversary edition of the Super Glide--we even used your inscrutable mug from Cycle's 1970 test of the original as a backdrop to one of the photos.
WHAT WE HAD HERE WAS A CLASSIC CASE of full moon, big campfire, beer in hand and firelight glinting off the chrome of motorcycles. A balmy mid-September breeze rustled dryly in the trees, bringing down a random leaf or two. Dogs barked in the village of Bridgeton, Indiana.
EVERYONE SMOKED WHEN I WAS LITTLE, giving me many opportunities to watch smoke rise from a cigarette. Initially, the hot combustion gas and particulates rose straight up from the burning end of the cigarette in a narrow column. Then the column began to oscillate from side to side, and finally broke up into swirling eddies.
You guys crack me up! I was excited to read the "Speed Wagons" article (CW, November), but you had me rolling on the floor with your total of 2000 miles in six weeks of riding. Sport-touring? I'd say your test was more like sissytouring! Come on, my last six-week ride (on a BMW) covered three times that distance!
"Hey, who are you calling short and fat?!" Vance & Hines Staggered Shortshots are sure to pump up the appearance and the performance of your 2004-05 rubber-mount Harley-Davidson Sportster 883 or 1200. Full-length, 220-degree-coverage heat shields eliminate bluing. Baffles, mounting hardware and instructions are also included in the $325 price. # 4 Vance & Hines, 13861 Rosecrans Ave., Santa Fe Springs, CA 90670 562/921-7461; www.vanceandhines.com
Vance & Hines
Suzuki GSX-R: A Legacy of Performance
Vance & Hines
Nippy Normans Radiator Grilles
Jazz up the appearance of your BMW R1150GS, R1150GS Adventure or R1200GS as well as protect the oil cooler from bugs, stones and other road debris. U.K. BMW specialist Nippy Normans produces these $45 grilles from 2mm-thick stainless steel. Installs in 30 minutes using supplied hardware and instructions. Nippy Normans Ltd., Bovey Tracey, Newton Abbot, Devon, TQ13 9BG,U.K.; 011-44-1626-830458; www.nippynormans.com
Vance & Hines
The aerodynamicists at Laminar Lip have developed a new application for the 2005-06 Triumph Sprint ST that reduces wind noise and buffeting, making the riding experience that much more pleasurable. The $85 ST Touring Lip is manufactured from impactand scratch-resistant acrylic. Installation requires no drilling. Laminar LLC, 2612 Croddy Way #E, Santa Ana, CA 92704; 866/540-5679; www.laminarlip.com
Vance & Hines
D.I.D 520VT Gold Chain
Enduro bikes and motocrossers that cannot accommodate wide, sealed drive chains now have a high-performance alternative: D.I.D's 520VT Gold. Selling for $112, the new "T-ring" offers the reduced friction qualities of the race-proven X-ring design and is rated for 500cc and smaller machines. D.I.D USA, 1031 Fred White Blvd., Portland, TN 37148; 615/323-4020; www.didchain.com
Vance & Hines
Oakley Thump 2
Oakley's original Thump, which incorporated a cord-free, solid-state, digital music player into the company's patented eyewear, broke new ground. Unfortunately, the Thump was a bit of a lump. Enter Thump 2, with its halved-in-size player built into "O Matter" Gascan frames. A full gigabyte (up from 512 MB) of flash memory provides storage for as many as 240 songs. Retailing for $449, the latest version is less costly, too. Oakley Inc., One Icon, Foothill Ranch, CA 92610; 949/951-0991; www.oakley.com
Vance & Hines
Saddlemen SaddleStow Deluxe Roll Bag
Headed for the open road? There's storage space aplenty in the $60 Saddlemen Deluxe Roll Bag. A large, zippered, horseshoe-shaped top opening enables easy access to the fully lined central compartment, and zippered end pockets handle overflow. Mounts to any rear rack, seat or sissybar using quick-fit adjustable harness system, or snaps to a SaddleStow Sissy Bar Bag. Saddlemen, 17801 S. Susana Rd., Rancho Dominquez, CA 90221; 800/397-7709; www.saddlemen.com
Vance & Hines
How to communicate with bank tellers and fast-food order-takers without first removing your helmet? With the modular N-102 from Italian lid-maker Nolan, you need only give a tug on the centrally located, dual-action release to go from full-face to open-face convenience. The new spoiler-equipped polycarbonate shell is more stable at speed than previous designs and featuies a hypo-allergenic liner that pops out far washing. Removable tinted Vision Protection System operates independently of the ratcheting anti-scratch shield, the latter supporting an included anti-fog insert. Solid colors cost $289; add $59 for Overland and Target graphics. Cima International, 399 Wall St. #L, Glendale Heights, IL 60139; 866/243-5638; www.nolan.it
THERE WAS ALWAYS that 5 percent. From the time Triumph took the plunge into the "real" sportbike world with its first lightweight, high-horsepower Daytona T595 and TT600, most everybody respected the British marque for having a go, but also thought it was completely nuts to try to go toe-to-toe with the Japanese in the ultra-competitive Open-class and middleweight segments.
Aprilia’s 450 and 550cc V-Twins are finally in production, with the supermoto SXV and enduro RXV hitting European roads now. And we do mean roads, because both bikes are street legal (with full lighting) and even meet Euro 2 emissions standards.
FOR ITS 50TH ANNIversary, Yamaha unveiled something exceptional at the 39th annual Tokyo Motor Show: a new V-Max. Currently a prototype, the big-bore V-Four may go on sale as early as 2007. Displacement for the all-new, liquid-cooled V-Four remains secret.
The Yamaha MT-01 wowed us with its debut last year, as the 1670cc V-Twin-powered machine was remarkably faithful to the 1999 Tokyo Show bike. Well, check out its new stablemate, the MT-03. Based around Yamaha's long-running 660cc Single that's seen duty in everything from trailbikes to sportbikes and even is being used by Aprilia in its new Pegaso, the MT-03 takes styling cues from its big-shouldered brother, but in a smaller, more commuter-friendly package.
"Honda's CR450R...Cat quick and grizzly strong," boomed the blurb on this month's cover, Inside, editors asked, "Is Honda's first Open motocrosser the best Open motocrosser?" In a word, yes, as the test concluded, "Once again, Honda did it right."
THE MODERN MOTORcycle disc brake began with 1960s experiments by English racer/engineer Peter Williams, was fitted to the 1969 Honda CB750 and saw industry-wide use by 1972. Early Japanese versions were 400-series stainless, 7mm thick and mated to massive (often iron) calipers; a complete front wheel and brakes could weigh more than 50 pounds!
BMW says the F800S is "ringing in the next round of its model offensive." Why, there's nothing offensive about the bike at all... Seriously, the first official photos of the middleweight parallel-Twin show what is a very unconventional bike for the German maker, which is to say its design is much more in line with that of conventional motorcycles!
UP: To Valentino Rossi, for getting it done, and doing it so well. The 26-year-old Italian clinched his fifth straight world championship with a second-place finish behind countryman Loris Capirossi in Sepang, Malaysia, four rounds from season's end.
WITH GAS PRICES AT previously unimaginable highs and no ceiling in sight, even a sportbike's thirst for fuel can leave your wallet running on fumes! Perhaps hard times at the pump have you considering a more economical mode of transportation?
35 years ago, Cycle said of the Harley-Davidson Super Glide, "Everybody is looking at you, admiring the waves of bravado that flood off the exterior, digging the bongo-beat rhythm of the engine." Same for the 2006 version.
WE'RE POUNDING DOWN THE road at 70 mph straight into a 35-mph headwind. It's early October in New England and I'm wearing about nine layers of foul-weather gear. At 70, the Super Glide is in the dead-center of its comfort zone I on the other hand, am not.
It's fitting that Cook Neilson makes a journalistic comeback on the pages of Cycle World reviewing a Harley-Davidson. It was a Harley after all that got Neilson, former editor of Cycle, into the motorcycle magazine business in the first place.
The man who designed the original Super Glide and the editor who tested it meet again in Milwaukee
Willie G: I still remember your test on the first Super Glide, back in 1970. That was really a special time, a unique time in history. I guess I didn't realize how unique it was. Your road test predicted the Super Glide would be a major piece of our history and our future.
FAMILIAR WITH ART DECO? No, I'm not talking about one of the mob bosses on The Sopranos. Art Deco is a distinctive form of styling that dominated industrial and commercial design between the mid-1920s and late 1930s. Evidently, Yamaha's designers are big fans of the style, because their newest model, the Star Roadliner, is a rolling showcase of Art Deco.
Like the Roadliner but feel the need to get away from it all by taking a bunch of it with you? Meet the Stratoliner, a longer-haul version that's identical to the Roadliner in every way save for its quick-detach windshield, thickly padded passenger backrest and leather-covered locking hard saddlebags, all installed as original equipment.
To people who pay attention to such matters, the term “Art Deco” conjures clear images of a specific type of classic design. But for the rest of us, what does that name mean and where did it come from? Though this category of styling originated at the turn of the 20th century, it didn’t gain prominence until 1925 at the Exposition Internationale des Arts Décoratifs et Industriels Modernes held in Paris.
GRISO MEANS "grayish" in the Italian dialect of the region around Lake Lario, where Moto Guzzi is located. While it's true this doesn't seem to be a very exciting name for a motorcycle, there is a back story: Griso is the name of a gray-bearded evil-baron character in what is perhaps the most famous saga in Italian literature, "I Promessi Sposi" or "The Betrothed," which happens to be set in and around Guzzi's home town.
Yes, quicker than you can say “intellectual property rights,” it looks as if Indian-born in 1901, died in 1953, reborn in 1998 and re-died in 2003-is making a return trip from that happy hunting ground in the sky yet again! This time, though, things may be different.
Who do artists and experts try to impress the most? Other artists and experts. This is one reason that Roger Goldammer’s win with his bike “Trouble” at the Las Vegas BikeFest show last September meant so much to him-judges were other renown custom builders.
MOTORCYCLE manufacturers huff and puff over customer wants and needs, going to great lengths to point out how much bike buyers' desires and interests actually factor into the design, styling and pricing of the latest machines. At Victory, Minnesota-based Polaris Industries' hard-working two-wheel division, they call this the “voice of the customer.” “I think everyone who works here has ‘VOC’ tattooed on his forehead,” laughs Product Manager Steve Smith, who joined Polaris in 1996 and has been with Victory since the beginning.
On Friday, September 30,1955, James Dean was driving his new Porsche Spyder along California Rt. 466 on his way to a roadrace in Salinas. One Mr. Donald Turnupseed was driving a Ford sedan in the opposite direction. The setting sun reflected off the Porsche’s silver paint, blending the tiny sports car into the landscape.
Suzuki's six-cylinder Tokyo show bike may be closer to production than you think
THE STRATOSPHERE-IT NAMES this new Suzuki six-cylinder show bike, and it also describes the "high frontier"that strange, elevated part of the atmosphere beyond all weather, where ramjets can breathe. There are two contrasting ways to look at this motorcycle.
FEEL A LITTLE SELF-CONSCIOUS WALKING around in flashy roadrace boots that make people think you're a forgotten member of The Village People? Rather be seen off-bike in something a little more, say, low-key? With its Matrix Gore-Tex boots, Oxtar may have just what your feet yearn for.
WHAT DO YOU WEAR UNDER YOUR roadracing leathers? If you’re in the know, you dress in something that creates a thin, perspiration-wicking barrier between your skin and the suit to help keep body temperature constant. That way, you stay cool and collected when the on-track action heats up.
Motorcycle protective clothing, body armor and CE standards
IT'S A ROUTINE OCCURRENCE IN TELEVISED GRAND PRIX coverage: A rider lowsides at triple-digit speeds, and the camera follows him as he tumbles and slides over hundreds of feet of asphalt, grass and pea-gravel-filled traps—only to get up, run over to his bike and try to straighten the clutch lever and kick the gear lever back into place.
DIRBIKING IS ROCKETING INTO THE FUTURE and leaving the good ol' days in the dust. Kawasaki is leading the charge, having dropped the long-running two-stroke KX125 from its 2006 lineup. I probably should be saddened by what appears to be the beginning of the end for two-strokes.
BACK TO IMOLA, WHERE IT ALL began 33 years ago with the first 200-miler. I could not think of a better place to acquaint myself with two of the new Ducati SportClassics: the Sport 1000 and the Paul Smart 1000 Limited Edition. The former pays homage to the 1973 750 Sport, while the latter celebrates the bike and the man who won the event that projected Ducati into a new dimension, giving the Bologna factory worldwide credibility in engineering and sporting performance.
KUSHITANI ROADRACING SUITS ARE AFectionately known around the CW offices as "leather pajamas" for their supple feel and comfortable fit. Much the same can be said about the Japanese gear-maker's GPR-series gloves, which suit our paws better right out of the box than some other brands after months of use.
EVERY MILLISECOND COUNTS IN RACING, which is why electronic quick shifters are must-have items. Are these devices also useful on the street? To find out, we installed a Dynojet Quickshifter on our long-term MV Agusta Brutale. How does the Quickshifter work?
MANY OF US HAVE DREAMED OF COMPETING IN THE DAKAR RALLY. Plunging across North Africa on powerful factory racebikes, nothing between you and the horizon but towering, windswept dunes. Strafing camel caravans. Robe-swathed mobs cheering you into the Kasbah...
I have a question that many of your readers may find interesting. By participating in the ever-increasing number of track days now available to the average rider, are we shortening the lifespan of our bikes? For instance, I will put about 500 miles on my 2003 Yamaha FZ1 this year at Barber Motorsports Park.
Bleeding the brakes on a motorcycle can be a frustrating, time-consuming process if you use. the traditional pump-the-lever/ pedal-and-open-the-bleeder technique. Which is why pressure or vacuum bleeders were invented. The vacuum type sucks new fluid down from the master cylinder through the bleeder valves on the calipers; a pressure type works in the opposite direction, pushing fluid up through the system and into the master cylinder through the caliper bleeders.
If you do much work on motorcycles, sooner or later you'll be in a situation where you have to pour oil or coolant into an opening in a hard-to-reach location, and none of the funnels available to you will get the job done. One funnel is too big, another too short, yet another too wide.
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