Bandit's 2000 Blue Flame

Sturgis 2000 – Whiskey, Women and the Open Road on the Blue Flame

  Unlike many years in the past, I didn't rely on any builders to make the deadline for the trek to the Bad Lands. The Bikernet crew handled building two road-sizzling chops in two and a half months. I've got to tell you that it felt good to get back in the garage amongst the socket sets, grinders and torches. Although the drunken work ethic was strong, several times during late-night wrench fests I came mighty close to firing myself. However, since I was one of a very small crew of volunteer wrench merchants, it didn't make solid sense. Nutboy was there until he couldn't handle the clogged pressure cooker in the garage, so he grabbed 30 college coeds and ...
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Sturgis 2000 – Part 1 Whiskey, Women and the Open Road (Continued)

Continued from page 1...... I was about to reach for the phone book one morning, on an ass-saving spring hunt, when the mail arrived with an invitation to the Harley-Davidson new-model announcement. At that point I was spending every extra moment in the garage and interruptions were a problem. But the factory has always been supportive and I couldn't miss the new bike review so I signed on for the event. It took place in Pasadena and all the moto-journalists from the Southern California region were on hand. Occasionally during the presentation I would peer at the list in my pocket and go to the dingy corner where the heads were to make a call about chrome or parts, or ...
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Sturgis 2000 – Part 1 Whiskey, Women and the Open Road (Continued 2)

Continued from page 2...... With a couple weeks left, I called Joker Machine daily. I didn't want to press, but I was going out of my mind. My contact, Geoff, had faced some health problems and decided that smoking was his cure. I didn't want to add to the stress of building high-precision, very costly components that were already on back order. I considered myself a nuisance so I was trying to tread lightly. The staff at Joker was more than helpful and I finally got the call from Geoff. "Come on out and we can bolt on the parts right here. I've even found a guy around the corner at Greased Lightening who will make up the brake lines. ...
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Sturgis 2000 – Part 2

That afternoon, I finished the weekly update and jammed for the tilting garage. Nuutboy had already broken under the extreme pressure and hauled ass for foreign shores. Wrench checked into rehab for the 24th time. He had been awake for three weeks and was beginning to look like the guy from the "Living Dead." Japanese Jay threw up his hands, jumped on the bike from the Harley fleet center, and hauled ass for the border. Renegade bitched and moaned, but under his breath, after smoking several joints, said, "Nice bike." We knew then I was good to go. I dialed Giggie in a frenzy, "Could I have knocked the clutch hub loose?" "Don't sweat it," he said, "It's tight, but ...
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Sturgis 2000 – Part 3

The next morning, after breakfast at Stan's diner in Scottsdale, we rolled north toward Payson on our way to Holbrook. Stan's is a small joint in a dull rectangular building downtown, that Stan tried to spruce up with adobe chairs and tables. A skinny waitress came to take our order but since this was Myron's regular digs, he went directly to the chef in back and nodded. That was enough. The chef knew what to do. Karl and I attempted to order with smiles on our unshaven mugs but the waitress was dry as toast, and edgy. The cactus twig of a woman could not comply. We had been trying the low carb regimen and Karl had lost 40 pounds, ...
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Sturgis 2000 – Part 4

The next morning, Myron and I got our asses in gear and loaded our scoots. Karl and Cheri were returning to Phoenix the long way through the mountains and Flag before getting home. We said our goodbyes and headed out. It was odd, or maybe not, that Myron and I were travelin' without maps this year. We remembered the time we rode into Colorado by mistake and Mark the Warrior was mapped to the max. This was going to be an odd trip without a map. Sorta like sailing to Hawaii without a compass. We were flying by the seat of our pants. I babied the Blue Flame onto I-40 and tested it with my left glove. Not an ounce ...
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