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BMW’s New F 900 Twins Were Unveiled at EICM 2019 in Milan, Italy

If you thought BMW had an F in the works, you weren’t wrong. There wasn’t one twin coming, but two. BMW had four models to unveil, two of which are underlined by a brand-new engine. One is the update of a model the global market is already familiar with. The other is the 9Cento Concept spin-off, now a full-time member of the BMW family. Introducing the all-new 2020 BMW F 900 R and the F 900 XR. AMERiders gives you a bit of information on the twins.

The Newcomer

We expected an F 850, BMW surprised us with a 900—I guess the name 9Cento (“9Hundred”) was kind of a big hint. The new F 900 XR joins the new S 1000 XR in the adventure-sport-touring segment. It borrows visual cues and the riding style of the S 1000 XR’s, adapted to a smaller, more accessible format. 

Gallery: 2020 BMW F 900 XR

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The XR is equipped with an adjustable windshield and its fairing has been designed with weather protection in mind. The addition of this new model gives BMW an additional edge in the mid-range segment. The model isn’t as adventure-oriented as the F 850 GS. Instead, if pushes the gauge further on the sport-touring end of the spectrum while still offering adventure-like qualities and features such as handguards, 6.68 and 6.77 inches of suspension travel front and back respectively, and a 4-gallon gas tank. 

In comparison, the F 900 R, the evolution of the F 800 R, falls in the roadster family with a naked silhouette and a road-oriented setup. 

Twinsies

The two new models use the same, equally new 893cc, inline-twin mill rated at 105 horsepower and 67.8 lb-ft of torque, cradled by a steel bridge frame and topped with a plastic gas tank meant to help keep the weight low. The new frame uses the engine as a stressed member for added rigidity.  

The Twins also receives a pretty comprehensive menu of techs and systems that includes keyless ignition, two standard Rain and Road riding modes, ABS, and for the European market, the intelligent emergency call system. 

Optional features are also available for further enhance the models’ convenience and on-road performance including two additional Pro riding modes, electronic suspension adjustment, ABS Pro, and adaptive cornering light. 

Pricing and availability of the new 2020 BMW F 900 R and F 900 XR will be announced at a later time.

And Don’t Forget

Monday, November 11th, 2019 is Veterans Day.

Veterans Day is a time for us to pay our respects to those who have served. For one day, we stand united in respect for you, our veterans. This holiday started as a day to reflect upon the heroism of those who died in our country’s service. We celebrate and honor America’s veterans for their patriotism, love of country and willingness to serve and sacrifice for the common good.

A lot of people confuse Veterans Day with Memorial Day please don’t, know the difference. Veterans Day is a time to thank those who are serving or have served and are still with us. Memorial Day is to reflect and remember those who lost their lives in service to their country. Confusing the two or combining the two diminishes the importance of both.

This year make sure to Honor our Veterans, spend time with them, donate to their causes and more. We here at AMERiders are supporters of our Veterans and want to thank them for their service and all they have and all they do for us.

~And as always…

~Live Free Ride Hard~

~AMERiders

and

Mistakes

Let AMERiders keep you up to date with information on BMW’s New F 900 Twins Were Unveiled at EICM 2019 in Milan, Italy.

And as always don’t forget to send us your stories, pictures, and events for posting to GALLERY.AMERIDERS @ GMAIL.COM  and we will post them for you. The more people that know about your event the better and we are offering free advertising. We would also love to hear about your rides and love to see those bikes so send those stories and pictures.

Like what you just read? Share it on social media ( Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+, and Instagram) with others and let them get the information and benefit from it as well.

Harley-Davidson Brings You New Bikes and Engines in 2021 Just Look!

Harley-Davidson is finally ready to move forward with the master plan it unveiled last year. The plan spreading a few years includes the addition a new, more “unusual” models to the American lineup in the hopes of The first two models to hopefully give the brand a new direction have now taken the stage. Meet the new 2021 Pan America and Bronx.  AMERiders gives you the info on these New Bikes and Engines for 2021.

We’ve been expecting these two for a little while now and it’s good to finally see them in the metal. Along with the two new bikes, the Motor Company takes advantage of the spotlight to also launch a brand new powertrain, V-twin of course. The Revolution Max is a liquid-cooled, 60-degree V that’s available in two displacement sizes, each one underlining one of the two new models. 

Gallery: 2021 Harley-Davidson Bronx

The Revolution Max 975cc powers the Harley-Davidson Bronx, the manufacturer’s new player in the streetfighter segment—who would have thought the era of the sportbike would make a comeback at Harley? I said in the past that the new streetfighter’s looks did nothing for me. Scratch that: I think it actually looks pretty good! The maker is a bit vague when it comes to power figures, stating that the smaller Revolution will push “more than 115 hp” and “more than 70 lb-ft of torque”. 

Gallery: 2021 Harley-Davidson Pan America

The 1,250cc version of the twin goes in the Pan America adventure bike—a first for the company that usually mainly focuses its efforts on touring-friendly models. The Pan America offers a different take on touring by adding adventure to the mix. The bigger iteration of the new V-twin also gets approximate ratings with more than 145 hp and more than 90 lb-ft of torque. Considering the model will at least produce that much power, it’s safe to say that those are really interesting figures. It will all depend on how heavy the Pan-Am will be.  

There’s still a lot the company can tell us about its new models but I have a feeling we’ll have to be a bit more patient to get the full portrait. The two new models and their respective twins will launch later in 2020 as 2021 models.

~And as always…

~Live Free Ride Hard~

~AMERiders

and

Mistakes

Let AMERiders keep you up to date with information on Harley-Davidson Brings You New Bikes and Engines in 2021.

And as always don’t forget to send us your stories, pictures, and events for posting to GALLERY.AMERIDERS @ GMAIL.COM  and we will post them for you. The more people that know about your event the better and we are offering free advertising. We would also love to hear about your rides and love to see those bikes so send those stories and pictures.

Like what you just read? Share it on social media ( Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+, and Instagram) with others and let them get the information and benefit from it as well.

EIMOR Customs Turns This Interceptor 650 Bomber into a Stealth Bomber

Without a shadow of a doubt. Royal Enfield occupies a specific corner of the motorcycle market. The Indian manufacturer offers modern classics similar to Britain’s Triumph and America’s Harley-Davidson, but they do so at a much more affordable price point. Coupling classic style with minimal electronics⁠—by today’s standards⁠—Royal Enfield creates the optimal platform for custom work. Introduced in 2018, the INT (Interceptor) 650 can be molded into a rough and tumble scrambler or transformed into an elegant roadster. India-based Eimor Customs opts for the latter with its 2019 INT 650 cafe racer build deemed the Bomber. AMERiders gives you a bit more information.

Royal Enfield’s Twin 650 platform consists of the GT 650 and INT 650 and both models heavily lean on styling cues of the ‘60s and ‘70s. While the GT 650 captures more of the cafe racer aesthetic, c decided the less angular lines of the INT 650 suited their vision best. 

Though the stock INT 650 prominently featured polished and chrome finishes, the custom garage dipped the transmission cases, engine, and exhaust pipes in satin black. The dark theme continued with black powder-coated shock absorbers and fork gators obscuring the classic chrome of the fork tubes. The rims, spokes, and hubs received similar treatment, imbuing the mid-displacement twin with a completely new attitude.

Gallery: Eimor Customs Bomber: 2019 Royal Enfield INT 650

To carry on the stealthy aesthetics, Eimor Customs painted the gas tank, fenders, and side covers midnight blue. The hue difference in the bodywork allowed the lines of the design to stand out among the sea of black without undermining the dark motif. 

Of course, no cafe racer would be complete without a bubble fairing and Eimor Customs exercised excellent restraint with the small unit attached to the headlight. Additional touches like a black leather diamond-stitched seat and bar end mirrors lend to the cafe racer style.

While the Indian custom shop modded the appearance of nearly every component on the INT 650, they left the 648cc parallel-twin’s internals intact. With 47 horsepower and 38 ft-lb of torque, the stock engine is all you need to cruise the boulevard and look imposing—and that’s exactly what this build does.

You have to admit this is one sweet looking ride at least we think so.

~And as always…

~Live Free Ride Hard~

~AMERiders

and

Mistakes

Let AMERiders keep you up to date with information on the 2017 Sturgis Motorcycle Rally.

And as always don’t forget to send us your stories, pictures, and events for posting to GALLERY.AMERIDERS @ GMAIL.COM  and we will post them for you. The more people that know about your event the better and we are offering free advertising. We would also love to hear about your rides and love to see those bikes so send those stories and pictures.

Like what you just read? Share it on social media ( Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+, and Instagram) with others and let them get the information and benefit from it as well.

Pack Up. Ride Out. The New 2020 Indian Challenger Family Has Arrived!

Surprise! Those who have been excited about the new 2020 Indian Challenger you don’t have to wait any longer! It’s now up for you to check out on the Indian Website. Without any of the bells and whistles, the new bagger popped up on the manufacturer’s site. Amidst rumors that the model would be formally unveiled in Milan, this comes as a bit of surprise. A good one, of course.  AMERiders gives you a bit of information on the gorgeous beauty.

Between the information released by Indian itself and all the leaked details about the new bagger, we already had a pretty clear portrait of the new model. Only a few days ago, Indian revealed all the details about its new engine, the PowerPlus, dubbed the company’s most powerful V-twin yet and first liquid-cooled large-displacement mill. The 1,769cc twin is rated at 122 horsepower and 131 lb-ft of torque. In the same release, the company confirmed the new mill would underline the equally new Challenger. Now we learn that the new PowerPlus mill is mated to a six-speed transmission with Gear Driver wet clutch.

Liquid-cooling with four-valve heads and single overhead cams are the key to the 60-degree PowerPlus V-twin. The rear cylinder deactivates when stopped in traffic, allowing the exhaust pipe to cool instead of roasting your leg. Indian Motorcycle

The model’s most noticeable feature is the ginormous fixed front fairing with the round headlight between LED brackets—a look consistent with the test mule that was spotted in April and in the Scout’s lineup pictures. 

Instead of the classic, almost triangular fairings we usually see on American cruisers and tourers, Indian opted for a rectangular shape for its new design. Compared to the Chieftain it joins in the bagger segment, the Challenger’s silhouette is rounder and fuller. The lightweight aluminum frame is topped with a 6-gallon gas tank. Compared to the Chieftain, the Challenger pretty much has the same proportions, if only slightly taller and 10-pounds heavier at 831 lb wet. 

The bike is mounted on a set of cast wheels with a 19-inch circle at the front and a 16-inch one at the back, wrapped in Metzeler Cruisetec tires. The suspension set up includes a 43-mm inverted fork with 5.1 inches of travel at the front and a Fox single shock at the back with hydraulic adjustment and 4.5 inches of travel. 

The front wheel is armed with two 320mm floating discs paired up with a set of four-piston Brembo radial calipers. The rear one uses a single 298mm disc with a two-piston caliper. ABS also comes standard on the model. 

The gigantic fairing hides a 7-inch touchscreen that displays all the usual information and data and allows the rider to select between the different riding modes available that include Rain, Standard, and Sport. The system can also be connected to a smartphone via Bluetooth. Other features keyless ignition, adjustable air vents, cruise control, and a power windshield. 

The Challenger is offered in three trim levels: the standard Challenger, the blacked-out Challenger Dark Horse, and the fully-loaded Challenger Limited. The two higher trim level models add a few comforts, including the Smart Lean Technology that uses dynamic traction control, the ABS, drag torque control system, a Bosch IMU to optimize control in the bends, among other things.

The regular model is priced at $21,999 while the Dark Horse comes in at $27,499 and the Limited, at $27,999.

~And as always…

~Live Free Ride Hard~

~AMERiders

and

Mistakes

Let AMERiders keep you up to date with information on The New 2020 Indian Challenger Family.

And as always don’t forget to send us your stories, pictures, and events for posting to GALLERY.AMERIDERS @ GMAIL.COM  and we will post them for you. The more people that know about your event the better and we are offering free advertising. We would also love to hear about your rides and love to see those bikes so send those stories and pictures.

Like what you just read? Share it on social media ( Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+, and Instagram) with others and let them get the information and benefit from it as well.

The Future of Harley Davidson Do They Know Where They Are Going?

Harley-Davidson on Tuesday said its recent-quarter earnings fell 24% as the cost of tariffs from China and the European Union and weak sales in the U.S. hurt the bottom line. So, does Harley Davidson know what their future is and where they are going with it? AMERiders has a look into what they are having to say about it.

Harley said it earned $86.6 million in the three-month period ended Sept. 29, down 24% from $113.9 million in the same period a year earlier. 

Let’s see what The Wall Street Journal Posted about the numbers…

The Milwaukee-based company, which has struggled to expand its ridership base globally, said its third-quarter revenue fell to $1.07 billion from $1.12 billion a year earlier. Analysts surveyed by FactSet had expected $1.04 billion of revenue in the quarter.
Shares of the company rose about 7% during premarket trading.
[…]
Motorcycle sales at retailers world-wide grew 2.7% compared with the same period a year earlier. Retail motorcycle sales in the U.S. declined 3.6% in the quarter and are down nearly 6% for the first nine months of the year.
Shipments of motorcycles fell 5.8% from a year earlier to around 46,000.
Overall, the company reported a profit of $86.6 million, or 55 cents a share, compared with $113.9 million, or 68 a share, a year ago.

Harley says its future goals through 2027 are to grow international sales to 50% of the company’s annual motorcycle revenue, launch 100 new bikes, and expand to 4 million total riders in the United States. 

The motorcycle maker recently said it was adding another component to its “More Roads to Harley-Davidson” road map for the future. Along with new products, broader access, and stronger dealers, it is now including “amplify brand” as a means of “enhancing the Harley-Davidson experience to inspire interest in riding, foster moto-culture, and build an even bigger, more passionate community of Harley-Davidson riders.”

It’s a nice sentiment, but results — and not flowery language — are what investors need to see.

Counting on electrics to save the day

Analysts are expecting a dismal third quarter as channel checks suggest sales are down between 5% and 10%, which would be on top of a horrendous double-digit decline a year ago.

Although Harley rolled out its new LiveWire electric motorcycle, it’s hardly a development holding back customers from buying a new bike. This isn’t like someone not buying an iPhone because a new model will soon be available. And at $30,000, it’s been priced out of the range of many potential buyers.

However, it didn’t get the rollout they really wanted it too as a bit later they had to stop production because of a “non-standard condition”, they said but started back up not very long after saying.

After completing rigorous analysis this week, we have resumed LiveWire production and deliveries. Customers may continue riding their LiveWire motorcycle and are able to charge the motorcycle through all methods. Temporarily stopping LiveWire production allowed us to confirm that the non-standard condition identified on one motorcycle was a singular occurrence. We take pride in our rigorous quality assurance measures and our drive to deliver the world’s best motorcycles.

The company has also admitted it views the pricey, high-performance motorcycle as more of a halo product bringing attention to the rest of the electric vehicle lineup to come.

But Harley still needs to prove it can succeed with its existing road map before charting new paths. 

~And as always…

~Live Free Ride Hard~

~AMERiders

and

Mistakes

Let AMERiders keep you up to date with information on the Future of Harley Davidson.

And as always don’t forget to send us your stories, pictures, and events for posting to GALLERY.AMERIDERS @ GMAIL.COM  and we will post them for you. The more people that know about your event the better and we are offering free advertising. We would also love to hear about your rides and love to see those bikes so send those stories and pictures.

Like what you just read? Share it on social media ( Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+, and Instagram) with others and let them get the information and benefit from it as well.

Harley Davidson Livewire Motorcycle Update: Production Restarted

Last week here at AMERiders we gave you the news that production of the Harley Davidson Livewire Motorcycle was being paused. Well, friends, we have an update on that for you. They are restarting production that is great news for anyone that wants one.

Update:

After completing rigorous analysis this week, we have resumed LiveWire production and deliveries. Customers may continue riding their LiveWire motorcycle and are able to charge the motorcycle through all methods. Temporarily stopping LiveWire production allowed us to confirm that the non-standard condition identified on one motorcycle was a singular occurrence. We take pride in our rigorous quality assurance measures and our drive to deliver the world’s best motorcycles.
We have confirmed that this was a singular occurrence on one motorcycle. Our rigorous analysis showed our strong quality assurance measures are working as designed. The findings also reaffirmed the strength of LiveWire’s technology and product design. Production has resumed and we are delivering to dealers.

A Harley-Davidson Motor Company spokesperson states that LiveWire production and deliveries have resumed.

We gave you the information previously that the first customers of the $30,000 Harley Davidson Livewire Motorcycle, which just started shipping in September, can resume charging their motorcycles at home. (The company previously advised customers to only charge at dealerships until the issue was resolved.)

Harley Davidson Livewire Motorcycle

Harley-Davidson has repeatedly declined to specify the problem. But whatever it was, the company claims the issue was only found on one motorcycle after “rigorous analysis.”

“Temporarily stopping LiveWire production allowed us to confirm that the non-standard condition identified on one motorcycle was a singular occurrence,” & “We take pride in our rigorous quality assurance measures and our drive to deliver the world’s best motorcycles.”

Stated a Harley Davidson Spokesperson
Harley Davidson Livewire Motorcycle

Let’s face it the entire Livewire project has not gone well for Harley-Davidson. Introduced at CES 2019, the company’s first fully-electric bike has been delayed, and it has received extensive criticism for being too expensive, and a slow seller. All this for a bike that has the expectations of saving Harley, and bringing younger riders to the storied, Milwaukee-based brand.

~And as always…

~Live Free Ride Hard~

~AMERiders

and

Harley Davidson Livewire Motorcycle

Let AMERiders keep you up to date with information on the Harley Davidson Livewire Motorcycle: Production Restart.

And as always don’t forget to send us your stories, pictures, and events for posting to GALLERY.AMERIDERS @ GMAIL.COM  and we will post them for you. The more people that know about your event the better and we are offering free advertising. We would also love to hear about your rides and love to see those bikes so send those stories and pictures.

Like what you just read? Share it on social media ( Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+, and Instagram) with others and let them get the information and benefit from it as well.

Were Do Harley Owners Go for a Joyride? No, It’s Not the Bar

So, were do Harley owners go for a joyride? No, it’s not the bar my dear! One perfect place to go is the Sequoia National Forest which is located at the southern edge of the Sierra Nevada mountains and which is also home to the Giant Sequoia Trees. AMERiders tells you all about this sweet joyride.

What is a Sequoia?

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Most Americans know what a Sequoia tree is and if you don’t you have been hiding most of your life so here is the short of it. They are the Earth’s most massive trees It’s hard to believe that a living thing can be so enormous and old. Also known as Sierra redwoods, the largest of these trees that live in California’s rugged Sierra Nevada mountain range could hold a stadium full of people.

HISTORY

Redwoods once grew throughout the Northern Hemisphere. The oldest known redwood fossils date back more than 200 million years to the Jurassic period. Today, the last giant sequoia on Earth live on the land about the size of Cleveland (48,000 acres), in about 73 groves scattered along the western slopes of the Sierra Nevada. The northernmost sequoia grows in Placer County in Tahoe National Forest, and the southernmost groves live in Giant Sequoia National Monument. The first widely publicized discovery of the giant sequoia was in 1852, at Calaveras Big Trees State Park. One of these trees, named the Discovery Tree, was unfortunately felled in 1853. It was determined to be 1,244 years old. Its stump was so large it was used as a dance floor.

Some sequoia groves were logged in the late 1800s and early 1900s, but not very successfully. The trees would often shatter when they hit the ground because of their brittleness and great weight. The leftover wood was used mainly for shingles and fence posts, or even for matchsticks, and therefore had little monetary value. Once Sequoia National Park was established, tourism brought a better incentive to protect the trees.

BIOLOGY

Some of the largest surviving giant sequoia groves can be seen in Sequoia and Kings Canyon National ParksGiant Sequoia National MonumentCalaveras Big Trees State Park, and Yosemite National Park. Sequoias are found at elevations of 1,400–2,150 meters (4,600–7,050 feet) and can live to be 3,000 years old!

Location for this Joyride

Less than 35 miles away from Frandy Park Campground in Kernville, California, the Trail of a Hundred Giants features a half-mile path through groves of mature sequoia trees. Waking from a restless slumber due to revving engines and uproarious campers at the Kernville Kampout, the solitude of Sequoia National Forest’s mountain roads sounded like a safe haven. 

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Nestled between Interstate 395 and Highway 99, Kernville offers a variety of great riding for all motorcyclists. From CA-99, Highway 178 heads east to Kernville through a maze of hairpin turns and giant sweepers. From I-395, CA-178 takes you west to the hillside curves along the shore of Lake Isabella. Both routes are freshly paved and offer access to local sights like the Remington Hot Springs, but you will want to head north—away from the crowds. At the end of your joyride, you can tour the…..

Trail Of 100 Giants Trail (Long Meadow Grove)

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Trail of 100 Giants offers an easy, accessible walk through the Long Meadow Grove, one of the premier groves of giant sequoias in our area. Along the trail, you’ll see impressively large giant sequoia trees, estimated up to 1,500 years old. A 1.3-mile paved trail has several loop options with interpretive signs for some of the highlights. Located on the Western Divide Highway (M 107), facilities include a paved parking area, restrooms, picnic area and Redwood Meadow Campground nearby. A $5.00 per vehicle fee is charged to help maintain and improve these facilities. The roads leading to the Trail are typically closed by snow during the winter months. (November thru April).

From the Trail of a Hundred Giants to Frandy Park Campground on Mountain Highway 99 by Dustin Wheelen

Though speed is coveted in our sport, there’s something rejuvenating about taking it slow.

~And as always…

~Live Free Ride Hard~

~AMERiders

and

Mistakes

Let AMERiders keep you up to date with information on Were Do Harley Owners Go for a Joyride? No, It’s Not the Bar!

And as always don’t forget to send us your stories, pictures, and events for posting to GALLERY.AMERIDERS @ GMAIL.COM  and we will post them for you. The more people that know about your event the better and we are offering free advertising. We would also love to hear about your rides and love to see those bikes so send those stories and pictures.

Like what you just read? Share it on social media ( Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+, and Instagram) with others and let them get the information and benefit from it as well.

Harley has Paused Production of The Livewire Bike Due to Technical Issue

The H-D LiveWire is making the headlines yet again. The Motor Company confirmed in a press release published on Monday that production on the LiveWire has been halted. This isn’t linked to the models underwhelming sales, but rather due to a glitch in the quality controls, resulting in what the company describes as a “non-standard condition”.  AMERiders has more on the subject.

Michelle Kumbier, the company’s chief operating officer, wrote in a memo viewed by The Wall Street Journal, which first reported the news. ” “This is disappointing for all of us,” Harley continues to sell the electric bikes but is working on a fix for its charging equipment, according to the Journal.

“As we lead in the electrification of motorcycles, we have delivered our first LiveWire motorcycles to authorized LiveWire dealers,” Harley-Davidson spokesperson, made in a statement to many media outlets “We recently discovered a nonstandard condition during a final quality check; stopped production and deliveries; and began additional testing and analysis, which is progressing well.”

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Harley says it is in close contact with dealers and customers and has “assured them [customers] can continue to ride LiveWire motorcycles,” adding “as usual, we’re keeping high quality as our top priority.”

The news comes a week after Reuters reported that Harley-Davidson dealers were having difficulty selling the motorcycle, which is the company’s first and only electric model and has a $29,799 base price.

New motorcycle sales in the U.S., particularly to customers aged under 40, have been in the doldrums since the recession. Harley-Davidson’s revenues have dropped over the last decade. Harley-Davidson’s shift to electric motorcycles is a bid to hold down its loyal gas-motorcycle following while creating products to appeal to millennials and the on-demand mobility market.

A small number of the brand’s first electric motorcycle has apparently already been shipped to certain Harley dealers in September though no sales numbers have been released. According to certain sources, Harley-Davidson has asked customers to only use the professional-grade DC fast-chargers to charge the bike rather than their home charging set up. This leads us to believe that some units have indeed found a home. There hasn’t been any mention of a recall campaign at this point in time. 

~And as always…

~Live Free Ride Hard~

~AMERiders

and

Mistakes

Let AMERiders keep you up to date with information of Harley’s Paused Production of The Livewire Bike Due to a Technical Issue.

And as always don’t forget to send us your stories, pictures, and events for posting to GALLERY.AMERIDERS @ GMAIL.COM  and we will post them for you. The more people that know about your event the better and we are offering free advertising. We would also love to hear about your rides and love to see those bikes so send those stories and pictures.

Like what you just read? Share it on social media ( Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+, and Instagram) with others and let them get the information and benefit from it as well.

 

Don’t Be Caught Wearing a Fake Helmet! Here’s How to Spot Them.

Your head is very important to you when your riding so why wear something that is fake would be beyond me. There are, however, a few places out there that make a fake helmet so good that it is hard to spot. As online shopping becomes more common and the race for the best price hurtles toward rock bottom there has been a spike in counterfeit motorcycle parts and accessories. Worryingly, helmets are very much part of that problem. Whether it’s a pop-up retailer that is at a show or at your local market, an online seller, or an unscrupulous dealer, there are lots of places you can buy a bad helmet if you’re not careful. AMERiders gives you some tips on how to spot a fake helmet.

Luckily, these helmets aren’t too hard to spot, some of the giveaways are dead simple and common, others specific to particular brands. So how do you know if you bought a good lid for a great price or a very big headache? We’re here to help.

The Really Simple Ways To Tell Your Helmet Is Fake

Do the graphics look weird? Is the TM logo missing from the logo? Do any of the words look poorly spelled, or crooked? Buddy – that helmet is le fake.

Go on the manufacturer (OEM) website. Does the Arai SexBomb304XRaid exist on Arai’s official website? No? Then your helmet is fake. Even if you do see your helmet on the website, does the color scheme or graphics pack you’re looking for show up? For example, if you see a Shark helmet with a Rossi special edition color scheme on it – it’s probably fake.

Most brand name helmets will show a date stamp on the D-ring, and the visor will have fine imprinting of the company logo, a small safety note, and one of the CE or other protective designation logos embedded in the plastic. You’ll also know if it is a new one or if the helmet is fake if the plastic protection coat on the visor is generic or plain. No real company wastes this opportunity to market at you with cool graphics and important-sounding helmet jargon.

The Less Simple Ways To Tell Your Helmet Is Fake

There are other tell-tales too. Almost every brand name manufacturer affixes specific “inspected by” stickers under the helmet lining in the crown of the helmet. You can see it by peeling back the liner. If it’s not there, the helmet isn’t legit.

You’ll also find DOT, SNELL, or ECE logos on most helmets – sometimes more than one of those terms. These are easy to fake and frequently are, but you can tell if the certification is real or not by how often it appears on the helmet, and where. If you can’t see it on the helmet tags under the liner or anywhere else – you’ve been had.  

This last one is a good trick if you feel confident or cocky. You can literally tell a fake helmet with your eyes closed. A lot of cheaper helmets are made with one moderate layer of regular polystyrene foam. It might have vents on the outside, but quality helmets have vent channels and holes specifically designed to promote airflow around your noggin. If you run your hand around the inside of the helmet, particularly in the crown area and it’s completely smooth or has only a couple of vent holes, and especially if those vent holes don’t line up with all the vents on the outside – you’ve got yourself a fake. This is my favorite one for winning bets and starting fights with stallholders at Sunday markets.

The Mostly Universal Stuff

Most brand-name helmets built in the past few years have quick-release systems that allow the helmet to be removed without putting a strain on a downed rider’s neck. The quick-release is on the cheek pad and allows them to be removed without the strap impeding them. If your helmet doesn’t have it and claims to be an AGV, Shoei, Arai or any other major name, look more closely.

Likewise, almost all high-quality lids have removable cheek pads and liners. Interior parts that are sewn together or rigid in place are a good sign of a knock-off helmet.

Is My Arai Real?

Getting more specific, a few brands have highly specialized design features.

There are several features that you’ll find on real Arai helmets you won’t find on knock off or fakes. These include the double-d rings for the helmet strap. If you see a seat-belt style quick-connector clasp – it’s not an Arai. If you look closely at the D-ring you’ll something else too. The inner ring is not flat, it’s actually got a little tab at the bottom of the D (the flat part) that makes the whole ring an L shape in profile. This is on the inner ring only, and it is supposed to help keep the strap tight.

Another thing is the shape. Arai has always had round helmets and always will. The company believes that any irregular angles can catch and cause more injuries, whereas round helmets always slide more cleanly. That’s why the vents on the Arai helmets are all designed to break away quickly in an impact and are never embedded.

While you will usually see vents in the top of the visor itself, you will never see a visor on an Arai that’s not covered by “ears”. They are there to aid in the sliding motion I mentioned earlier, but also to make sure the visor mounting hardware is not part of the integral safety shell. That’s why you will also never see an internal sun visor on an Arai helmet.

If your Arai has one, it’s a fake. If there’s any hardware between the outer liner and the multi-density foam layers inside, your Arai is an Ainti.

Is My Shoei Real?

A genuine Shoei helmet will come with the Shoei shield system. It’s a flush-mount visor mounting system that is unique to the brand. Always compare not only the visor mount but the close lock on the chin bar with other Shoei helmets. If they don’t look the same, they’re not the same.

Shoei also points out that the vents they use are a unique design and embedded within the outer layer. If your vents feel thin, move too easily, or otherwise look and seem cheap, you might not have a real item.

Go To A Store if you’re worried about finding a fake.

At the end of the day, finding a helmet is one of the most important things you can do as a rider. It’s not only the brand name that matters. Size, fit, shape, and of course all the technology helmet makers put into their products make you safer and more likely to get through bad moments with less injury. Sure, you can save a few bucks online, but unless you buy the same brand and model year in year out, it’s likely you can’t find the right fit for your head just by guessing.

For the best results when you’re buying a helmet, go to a store, try a few on. Compare the helmets to other helmets, and buy one you can believe in.

Here at AMERiders, we sell top-notch name brand helmets Never Fakes.

~And as always…

~Live Free Ride Hard~

~AMERiders

and

Mistakes

Let AMERiders keep you up to date with information on the 2017 Sturgis Motorcycle Rally.

And as always don’t forget to send us your stories, pictures, and events for posting to GALLERY.AMERIDERS @ GMAIL.COM  and we will post them for you. The more people that know about your event the better and we are offering free advertising. We would also love to hear about your rides and love to see those bikes so send those stories and pictures.

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Tips to Avoid Hitting Deer or Other Wildlife While out for a Motorcycle Ride.

Last week here on AMERiders week we talked about were riding season possibly ends for some. During that post that I gave some tips about riding during fall as well, giving you the promise of this post to elaborate on tips about avoiding Deer/wildlife while riding your Motorcycle.

There were a few people associated with motorcycles one way or another whether it was racing callers or writers like me that have passed away due to accidents involving wildlife. One such rider was popular series announcer Brian Drebber, who collided with a deer on the way to Pittsburgh to call the Pittsburgh MotoAmerica round in 2018. He was riding from his home in Georgia to the airport.

Some people I know will tell you that from experience that some deer collisions are practically impossible to avoid. But, as we’re about to enter the highest-risk season for deer strikes, now’s a good time to review best practices.

There are five main American deer species. In the order you’re likely to see them on roadsides, whitetail deer predominate, followed by mule deer, elk, and moose; unless you’re riding in very remote terrain, you won’t encounter caribou.

Whitetail deer, once nearly wiped out, are now the most common animal threat for motorcyclists. They’d be cute if only they’d stay in the woods. Photo by Lance Oliver.

Around 100 years ago, whitetails were hunted to near extinction, but the advent of modern wildlife management practices, the near eradication of predators like wolves and mountain lions and, more recently, a decrease in sport and subsistence hunting, all conspired to create a deer population boom in the 20th century. About 30 million deer now live in the United States — almost as many as there were before the arrival of European settlers.

That’s a lot of deer, and they adapt remarkably well to living in close proximity to people. As anyone with a vegetable garden knows, you’re now as likely to encounter deer in the suburbs as you are when riding in the country. The unlucky guy in the video below found out not only that you don’t have to be in the country to hit a deer, but also that it can happen in your first minute of having a motorcycle license.

According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, the five states with the highest risk of deer strikes are West Virginia, Montana, Pennsylvania, Iowa, and South Dakota. As that list suggests, there’s not any particular region of the country where you’re safe. According to State Farm, one out of every 41 West Virginia customers filed a deer strike claim in 2016!

Unfortunately and unsurprisingly, motorcycle riders are far more likely to be injured in a deer strike than are car drivers. I pulled data from a state at random and saw that the data gathered by the Michigan DOT suggests about three-quarters of motorcycle-deer collisions result in injury to the rider and/or passenger. When they studied deer strikes in 2009, all nine fatalities in Michigan were motorcyclists. According to the AAA, motorcycles — which account for less than one percent of vehicle miles traveled — account for 70 percent of deer-strike fatalities. Ouch.

So, what can you do to reduce the chance that you’ll become one of those statistics?

Think like a hunter

Do you know who is rarely surprised by deer on the roads? Hunters, because they know where deer can be expected, and they watch for them. If you’re going to ride in deer country — which basically means, if you’re going to ride anywhere that’s actually fun — you should learn to think like a hunter.

I’m not kidding. Like Field & Stream on Facebook and read their deer hunting tips. Even better, take a hunter education course and start hunting (as they say, If you’re not part of the solution, you’re part of the problem).

deer
Common Tread contributor Teri Conrad’s Kawasaki Drifter lost half its distinctive front fender when she hit a deer, but because she was able to keep the motorcycle upright, she was able to continue the ride and was uninjured. A whitetail deer usually doesn’t weigh more than 150 pounds, so riders are most often killed or seriously hurt because they crash, not because of the initial impact with the animal. Photo by Teri Conrad.

Deer populations peak in the spring, but the risk of hitting them on the road peaks in October, November, and December, during the annual rut. Deer are on the move at this time of year. It’s also the time of year when mature adults weigh the most, making collisions that much worse.

Although you can encounter deer at any time of the day or night, they are most active between dusk and midnight, then again at first light. They typically spend the middle of the day in deep cover, but most deer are not really forest dwellers. Learn to identify edge habitat; prime food sources such as standing corn, mast crops like acorns, and orchards; and travel corridors like treelines, hedgerows, and gullies.

Are you riding through prime habitat? Are you crossing a small gully (especially one channeled into a culvert)? Are you passing between food supply and cover at dawn or dusk? Slow down and pay extra attention.

Deer are herd animals. If you see one crossing the road in front of you, be alert to others that might be following (as the video below shows). If you see deer on both sides of the road, there’s an excellent chance that as you approach, the herd will coalesce. This is especially true if there’s one individual on one side and several on the other side; the solo animal will want to get into the safety of the herd when alarmed.

Deer are fleet animals that run from a perceived threat. Unfortunately, they evolved a flight response for wolves, not motorcycles. As a consequence, they tend to zig-zag and change direction after an initial startled leap. What this means to you is, if you see one crossing the road in front of you, don’t assume you can just adjust your line to pass behind it. If you scare it, it may well reverse course and cross your path again.

Assess and improve your skills

Always cover the front brake. Practice emergency stops. Attend a track day. Get expert training. When you spot a deer ahead, your front brake is a lifesaver, but only if you’re ready, willing, and able to use it right.

Play “What if?” with yourself. When you come across good deer habitat, ask yourself, “What would I do if Bambi jumped out from behind that bush?” Mentally rehearse applying the brakes and aiming for a gap with aggressive counter-steering, not target-fixating on the deer.

I’ve actually heard people claim they increase speed, with the idea that spending less time near the deer limits the opportunity to hit it. This is not just nuts, it’s super-nuts. When you take your hunter education course they’ll teach you that a bullet’s kinetic energy and destructive force is a function of mass times velocity squared. In a worst-case scenario, you are way better off scrubbing as much speed as possible and hitting the beast at a slower speed.

Ride for the conditions

First, the obvious: Don’t ignore deer crossing signs, especially at peak times! Pay attention to roadkill; deer travel along the same paths and tend to be hit in the same places over and over. Wear a helmet and the best protective gear you can afford, or at least better than the shorts the guy in this video is wearing.

If you’re out riding in the country, you should already be watching for traffic, cross-traffic, blind driveways, cops… all that goes without saying. But a lot of riders choose a speed based on those human factors and then basically play Russian roulette as far as animals are concerned.

Anywhere that you could encounter deer you should also scan and assess the verges of the road. How close is the treeline? When was the right-of-way last mowed? If the grass in the ditch is waist-high, you won’t see deer until they step right onto the shoulder. Processing that additional visual information means slowing down for safety.

If you’re riding in a group, increase your following distance and maintain a staggered formation in order to give each rider time and space to brake and take evasive action. If you see deer ahead, slow down and do something (for example, raise an arm or stick out a leg, or flash your brake light) to ensure following riders notice, too. If you pass deer near the road, consider flashing your high beam or honking to warn oncoming drivers and riders.

There are times of year and times of day when, given the choice of a fun two-lane state highway or a boring Interstate, I choose the slab because it tends to have wider verges and a wider shoulder, giving me better sightlines. (Although lots of deer are hit on Interstate highways, the per-passenger-mile risk is much lower than the risk on country roads.)

Six more tips

Some Bikers I know like to cheat their lane positions as close to the centerline as possible, based on the theory that deer enter the road from the sides, and because they want the ability to choose an escape path to either side.

Don’t over-ride your headlights! Seriously. Your motorcycle’s headlights are probably not as good as the average car’s. Next time you’re riding on an unfamiliar country road at night, try stopping before you get to the next mailbox. You’ll probably find that exercise to be a challenge, even at the posted speed limit (which seems frustratingly slow in daylight.) If you frequently ride in primo deer country, you should equip your bike with extra lights. And do not get caught out after dark with a dark face shield.

Insurance industry research has largely discredited “deer whistles.” Some people advocate flashing your lights and/or honking your horn if a deer seems transfixed by your headlights. Trying those things is probably beyond the capability of most people in a panic-stop situation. If you get your speed down to 15 miles an hour and you still have 50 to 100 feet to work with, feel free to flash your lights and honk and don’t forget let me know if it seems to work.

deer
An Alaskan moose crosses the road by the flight line here on 3 July. Mother and baby moose are common sites for Eielson members this time of year and special care must be taken not to get between a mother and her baby as she will turn very violent. U.S. Air Force Photo by Staff Sgt Joshua Strang

In high-risk conditions, you may want to tuck in behind another vehicle whenever possible. Yes, it’s a “deer-catcher,” but the biggest advantage to following a car is you get to look way ahead into the area illuminated by that vehicle’s headlights. Don’t tailgate so close that if the driver sees a deer and hits the brakes, you’ll rear-end him. But do pick a distance such that if he scares a deer off the road, it won’t have time to get back in your way.

In poor light, deer are remarkably well camouflaged. Your best hope of seeing them is catching the light reflected from their eyes. There are lots of little reflectors out on country roads, marking gates and such, but those reflectors don’t blink when caught in your headlight!

Any time distant headlights or taillights seem to flicker, it could be because your line of sight was momentarily blocked by a deer. If you see brake lights come on the way up the road for no apparent reason, take it easy as you approach that spot.

Disclaimer

Even if you do everything right, deer strikes remain probably the hardest crashes to avoid. If you regularly ride in deer country and have tips of your own, please add them in the comments. In the meantime, if you follow my advice there’s a good chance you’ll anticipate your next deer encounter, see it in time to avoid it and ride on after muttering, “Not tonight, deer.”

~And as always…

~Live Free Ride Hard~

~AMERiders

and

deer

Let AMERiders keep you up to date with information on Tips to Avoid Hitting Deer or Other Wildlife While out for a Motorcycle Ride.

And as always don’t forget to send us your stories, pictures, and events for posting to GALLERY.AMERIDERS @ GMAIL.COM  and we will post them for you. The more people that know about your event the better and we are offering free advertising. We would also love to hear about your rides and love to see those bikes so send those stories and pictures.

Like what you just read? Share it on social media ( Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+, and Instagram) with others and let them get the information and benefit from it as well.