Motorcycle Words

a motorcyclist's blog

Sign Up Now for the 2017 MTDR Spring Ride

MTDR will be putting on their 16th Annual Spring Ride event at the famous Loretta Lynn’s Ranch. This offers some of the best dirt riding available in TN. There will be a Banquet Dinner on Saturday evening, tickets are limited so don’t delay. The event pre-registration fee for adults & children 13 yrs. and older is $42.00, and children 12 yrs. & younger is $26.00. Pre-registration forms and payment must be postmarked on or before March 24th, 2017. Failure to meet this deadline will result in participant needing to pay the standard event registration fee. If you choose not to pre-register, the event fee for adults & children 13 yrs. and older is $50.00 and children 12 yrs. & younger will be $35.00 during designated registration hours each morning.

Click here to register online

Click here for the Youth Liability Waiver form

More info at the MTDR website

AGV Sport Compass Jacket Review (wBW)

Just published my review of the AGV Sport Compass jacket over at webBikeWorld.com. This is my go to jacket now for good weather. It has a unique waxed-cotton and buffalo leather shell in a sport riding cut which really stands out from the crowd of technical street riding gear.

The look and protective features make it versatile enough for use commuting, sport touring, and even just looking slick standing next to your favorite vintage or modern-retro motorcycle. Looks of course aren’t everything and the
Compass jacket does include CE armor in the shoulders and elbows, which is
also where the leather portions of the jacket are placed for best protection.

A back protector pocket is in place  but the included foam pad should be replaced with something more substantial. The  jacket reviewed here does have a pants to jacket connection zipper but not all copies include it. For some reason only part of the production run included it and I had to swap out a couple to finally get one with the zip (thanks to motorcyclegear.com and AGV Sport for helping out with this).

Check out the entire review and photos over at webBikeWorld.com
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There’s a Reason Why I Race Motorcycles – Michael Gilbert

MotoAmerica racer and associate editor at Sport Rider Michael Gilbert talks about how he got going in racing and some of the ups and downs of the 2016 season . I had the good fortune to meet Michael last year in Uvalde, TX at the Continental Tire proving grounds. We were both part of the USA press launch for the Sport Attack 3 tires.  Michael manages to race professionally AND hold down a full time job as a writer/editor both of which take a lot of time and yet he does very well at both.


Michael Gilbert: There’s a Reason Why I Race… by motorcyclistonline

MotoPumps Airshot Review – wBW

Motopumps AirShot

My latest review, the MotoPumps Airshot inflator, is published today on webBikeWorld.com. The Airshot is one of the smallest portable air compressors you can get. Running off of 12 volts and drawing less than 5A (4.7 I believe), this little device is able to fit in most underseat storage for street bikes as well as small tank bags and other luggage.

Capable of 100psi, this little inflator  can even bring tubliss tubes (or non-tubes I guess) up to full pressure. The Airshot comes with power connectors to fit most any 12volt source you have. If you want to have peace of mind on the street and/or the trail, this little guy is worth checking out.

Read the full review over at webBikeWorld.com

Edit: Added video below

Hepco & Becker Royster C-Bow Side Cases Review for webBikeWorld

I mentioned a few weeks ago that I was taking a look at the new Hepco & Becker Orbit side cases to review for webBikeWorld.com. The plan was to install these on our friend Johnny Jarvis’ anniversary edition Yamaha XSR 900. Unfortunately there were some differences with the rear turn signals between the USA and European market versions of the XSR 900 that prevented the Orbit cases from mounting.

All was not lost though. Hepco & Becker decided to send us a set of their semi-rigid Royster side cases to go on the C-Bow mounting system we already installed on the XSR. These bags installed without any clearance issues and the yellow accents on them look good against the backdrop of the black and yellow livery of the XSR 900.

The Royster bags and the C-Bow system are a good choice for those looking to add extra storage to their ride. The C-Bow system has a smaller, less noticeable “footprint” than many other luggage mounting systems and the locking mechanism is very simple, yet solid.

Check out the full review over at webBikeWorld.com.

The Cold is Here, Will You Ride Through it?

How typical is this of Nashville weather. Yesterday it was 68 degrees outside. Overnight the temperature dropped 40 degrees and turned the light rain into snow and ice leaving rooftops with a snowy sheen (see the photo at the right). Many motorcyclists will let their bikes hibernate for the winter, quietly napping under a cover with a tank full of fuel and stabilizer with the glow of a battery tender keeping it company.

Personally I don’t winterize my bikes and will get out and ride when the temperatures reach above 30 degrees (F) for at least short rides and to commute. I know facing the cold of winter riding isn’t for everyone but if you’re interested in extending your riding season further hit the Continue Reading button below for a story written my my friend Kevin Anderson over at TDC Cycle.

Continue reading

Ballistic 7.0 Pants Review | wBW

joe-rocket-ballistic-7-pants-crash-damage-hipMy review of the Joe Rocket Ballistic 7.0 pants is now published up at webBikeworld.com. These textile riding pants have become a favorite for me as they provide protection and versatility at a very good price point. They are also available in a very wide range of sizes so no matter what your shape or size, they should have a pair for you.

The Ballistic 7.0 pants come with a waterproof zip out liner, CE armor at the knees, and removable padding at the hips. The long, dual, type zippers on each leg make them very easy to put on and take off without needing to remove your riding boots.

In my review you will even see some crash damage that occurred earlier this year. I was so pleased with how well they protected me that I bought the same pair again to replace them.  For all the details and photos head over to the review here:  Ballistic 7.0 Pants review

Hepco Becker Announces Orbit Side Case – Review Coming Soon

Hepco Becker Orbit Side Case Hepco Becker recently took the wraps off of their new Orbit side cases and I’ve got a set here for review for webBikeWorld right now. These new cases mount using H&B’s C-Bow luggage system which is a low visibility luggage carrier system designed to not detract from the looks of a motorcycle when the bags are not mounted.

The Orbit side cases are the first hard luggage units for use with the C-Bow system which has up until now consisted of soft bags and semi-rigid cases. Later today we’ll be installing the C-Bow system and the Orbit side cases on Johnny’s Yamaha  XSR900 with a full review for webBikeWorld following shortly.  Until the review is ready, you can have a look at some of the studio photos I took last night to whet your appetite.
(click the images for full size versions)

Hepco Becker Orbit Side Case   Hepco Becker Orbit Side Case   Hepco Becker Orbit Side Case

Continental Eyeing Russian Dandelions

Not a Russian dandelionSo at first glance that phrase the title of this article doesn’t make much sense but bear with me. It turns out that Continental Tires has been looking at finding a substitute for traditional rubber that grows on (OK, in) trees. You might be thinking that modern tires for motorcycles, cars, trucks, etc. are made from synthetics but the natural rubber content in some tires is as high as one-third of the overall rubber material.

Rubber trees grow in relatively narrow ranges of climate and those areas on our little planet are easily affected by the increasing threat of climate change in both the temperature kind as well as the geo-political kind of climate. Recently Continental tested a type of latex that comes from the Russian Dandelion plant and the results appear to be very promising. Hit the link below to learn more about how you might be carving up twisty roads in the future using flowers for traction.

http://arstechnica.com/cars/2016/10/the-secret-ingredient-in-continentals-future-tires-dandelions/

Them’s the Brakes ( a bit of a rant )

brake-rotorThe actual phrase is “Them’s the breaks” but ‘brakes’ works in this case too.  According to Grammarist.com, the phrase means that “sometimes the outcome to a situation isn’t what one wanted or expected, and most especially, that there isn’t much to be done about it so one might as well accept it and move on”.

There’s another phrase that applies to this story too. Back in the 19th century, French playwright Charles-Guillaume Étienne penned the phrase “On n’est jamais servi si bien que par soi-même”. This has widely been translated as “If you want something done right, do it yourself”. The literal translation is “One is never served so well as by oneself”, but I digress.

A recent issue with my Ninja 1000, however, demonstrates that our playwright friend from France does indeed have a point, even if there are plenty of things one should best leave to others to do.

This past Spring I purchased a new Ninja 1000 (leftover 2013 model) from a local dealer. The bike has been great and has had only one issue. A pulsing from the front brakes as one reaches that last 15-20 feet of stopping. I tried changing brake pads after a few hundred miles as the OE pads really felt pretty wooden. The brakes had more bite now but the pulsing was still present.

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