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The Travelers Bikernet Weekly News for July 23, 2020

By | General Posts

Alerts and News that Will Blow Your Mind!

Hey,

This coming week is going to be a strange one. I know the whole world is trying to grapple with this Covid mess, while I hide out in the Badlands surrounded by peace and nirvana, deer and pine trees.

We are still two weeks from the rally, but tourist and bikers are everywhere. This morning five of our bikes are being delivered to the Bikernet Covid Hide-Out in the Badlands by Haul Bikes. I’ve got the shop set up and ready for minor repairs and already have a brazing project on the bench, maybe two.

Every day is exciting when it involves motorcycles. My grandson is trying to coerce a couple of buddies to ride from LA to Sturgis to escape the madness and mayhem. It’s interesting. When we need fresh air, fresh outlooks, or new adventures, just mount up and ride. Let’s hit the news.

The Bikernet Weekly News is sponsored in part by companies who also dig Freedom including: Cycle Source Magazine, the MRF, Las Vegas Bikefest, Iron Trader News, ChopperTown, BorntoRide.com and the Sturgis Motorcycle Museum. Most recently Quick Throttle Magazine came on board.

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Livewire: a plug for a whole new generation of Harley-Davidson bikes

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By Mathieu Day-Gillett from https://www.driven.co.nz

Who on earth expected that it would be Harley-Davidson that would become the first major motorcycle manufacturer to bring to market a fully electric bike?

Okay, all cards on the table, I’ve really been looking forward to riding Harley’s Livewire on behalf of DRIVEN and www.onthrottle.co.nz. In fact, I was lucky enough to have ridden the Livewire’s precursor – 2014’s Project Livewire – and I was so blown away by the bike that I gave it my Bike Of The Year gong for that year.

For the production model, all the rough edges have vanished and Harley has given the bike a charging port in the traditional fuel filler location.

The lightweight alloy frame no longer has a rough finish to it, and while I was at first sad to see the cool textured finish of the concept bike make way for the smooth new frame, I can appreciate that owners of the Livewire would struggle to clean such a thing. Imagine the damage to your trusty old sponge if you had to wipe it over the sandpaper-like finish of Project Livewire?

Other minor changes come in the form of a small fairing around the LED headlight unit, a new sub-frame with space for a pillion, a variety of colour options (our pick is the Yellow Fuse colour scheme), and rather importantly the addition of a numberplate carrier which integrates the rear tail light and indicators also.

Most importantly, however, the Livewire now has functioning rear-view mirrors. Yup, as cool looking as the mirrors on Project Livewire were, in terms of function all they gave you a good view of was your kneecaps.
But what we really want to know is how it rides. Thankfully, Harley-Davidson sorted us out with a guided ride around Portland, with some wicked twisty back roads thrown in for good measure to help us see what it is like to ride the Livewire in the real world.

While it was only a taste of what the ownership experience will be like, riding the Livewire was easily a highlight of my year in motorcycling.

The bike has four pre-loaded rider modes (Road, Sport, Rain and Range) which can be toggled on the fly and each gives the bike a noticeably different throttle response.

Make no mistake, this bike is FAST. With all its power and torque (78kW/105hp and 116Nm) available from 0rpm this thing accelerates like nothing else. Just twist the throttle and the bike shoots off at warp speed.

Linked into the Livewire’s systems is Harley’s first traction control system, which is connected with a six-axis IMU and the ABS brakes. The result is a system that offers the necessary safety net for a bike that has its full power capability from the touch of the throttle.

Our ride route took us from the stop-go of central Portland, out into the hills through some incredibly twisty roads before looping back at the end of the day.

I’ll admit that I was slightly worried about setting off immediately into traffic at the start of the day.

My biggest memory of Project Livewire was nearly dropping the bike in low speed conditions, but Harley has really dialled in the throttle response of Livewire to the point that you can roll along as slow as you like without feeling like you need to slip the non-existent clutch.

In fact, the Livewire is actually an incredibly easy bike to ride in general. It’s well set up with fully adjustable Showa suspension, Brembo brakes and that host of adaptable nanny aids which alter their settings depending on which rider mode you have selected.

Rain is the most constrained with the slowest throttle response, while sport is an absolute riot and actually lets the real wheel slip a bit.

I did feel adjusting the settings on the suspension would have been helpful when really pushing it, as the bike wasn’t quite happy with my fat ass and some of the rougher road surfaces (contrary to popular belief, the roads in the US have their fair share of potholes).

The bike never instilled any sense of being out of my control though and was incredibly confidence inspiring.

Can it wheelie? Probably, I’ll admit I didn’t really try. I will say I’m pretty sure you can do burnouts and annihilate the rear tyre with the traction control off (I will neither confirm or deny trying). Either way having full power from the touch of the throttle is a sensation that quickly becomes addictive.

I did find myself only really using two of the rider modes, Sport (for obvious reasons) and when the riding mellowed out I would switch to Range mode which allows the most battery regeneration when either braking or coasting.

Riding like a loon will obviously drastically reduce your battery range, and I arrived back at base with 32 per cent left, while a much more sensible Australian rider arrived back with nearly 50 per cent!

On merit alone I feel the bike will certainly attract its fair share of buyers. New Zealand pricing is $53,995, which may lock out much of the younger market Harley-Davidson is working hard to attract to its brand.

However, the Livewire is not a bike which Harley expects to sell like hotcakes. It is, instead, the halo product of a much wider range of electric motorcycles from the iconic brand.

In theory, there are another four bikes scheduled to debut below the Livewire in terms of spec and price point in the next two years or so and that is a really exciting prospect.

Is the Livewire another orphan from Harley? Hell no! This is the shock the motorcycling market needs.

Freestyle Harley-Davidson Blue Flames Is What’s Wrong with Series Custom Frames

By | General Posts

by Daniel Patrascu from https://www.autoevolution.com

Take a good long look at any custom motorcycle made in the U.S. No matter in what state they were made, or when, they tend to have that certain unique feel about them. And a big reason for that is the custom frame that underpin them.

You see, Americans love to make one-offd, and that is why the garages there usually don’t make a frame and then turn series production on it. This results in truly unique two-wheelers, each with its story to tell.

Not the same can be said about Europe though. First off, there are far fewer custom motorcycle garages there. Secondly, the ones that do exist have been forced to turn to mass production, including of custom frames, and that takes its toll on the originality of this build.

Take the bike in the gallery above. It comes from Europe, and is the work of a very busy garage there called Thunderbike. It looks very much like all the other custom-framed Thunderbikes we’ve discussed over the past few months, regardless of when they were made.

This one comes from 2008, and it is the result of pairing a custom Thunderbike frame by the name Freestyle with the usual Harley-Davidson Screamin’ Eagle engine. It appears to be exactly what you would expect from a custom European bike, with nothing particularly exciting about it. And the blue color sprayed on it, the work of Thunderbike’s usual partner in this area, Kruse Design, does not seem to help either.

The fact the bike will probably not be remembered down the ages (we uncovered it while digging for machines worthy of our Custom Builds Month coverage) does not diminish the merits of the frame tough.

Made from large diameter cold-rolled ST52 steel tubing, it comes complete with struts, tank, oil tank, CNC machined aluminum swingarm, rear fender, rear wheel axle, bracket for engine, bracket for battery, and seat plate.

State police offer free motorcycle safety course

By | General Posts

by Arabella Thornhill from https://potomaclocal.com

Virginia State Police have invited local residents to take part in a free motorcycle self-assessment, “Ride 2 Save Lives,” course this Saturday.

It is a free course that will be held Saturday, July 25 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Morton’s BMW Motorcycles located at 5099 Jefferson Davis Highway in Fredericksburg. Space is limited to 30 people.

According to a press release from Public Relations Director for Virginia State Police Corinne Geller, Richmond Division Motors Unit will be instructing participants on all aspects of rider safety through the use of SIPDE (Scan, Identify, Predict, Decide, Execute). SIPDE is the same training required of all VSP motorcycle operators.

The course provides riders with proper techniques on how to handle hazards, special situations, interstate highways, curve negotiations, and much more, according to Geller.

Social distancing measures will be in place for the safety of those in attendance, according to Geller. Riders must have a valid operator’s license with a class “M” endorsement, appropriate riding attire, a helmet, and eye protection.

The motorcycles must be street legal and helmets must be Department of Transportation approved to participate in this program, according to the press release.

Registration closes Wednesday, July 22. For those interested, registration is available online through the Virginia State Police Facebook page under “events” or at eventbrite.com.

The Deadwood Diaries

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Wild Bill Hickock Murdered

“Wild Bill” Hickok, one of the greatest gunfighters of the American West, was murdered in Deadwood, South Dakota.

Born in Illinois in 1837, James Butler “Wild Bill” Hickok first gained notoriety as a gunfighter in 1861 when he coolly shot three men who were trying to kill him.

A highly sensationalized account of the gunfight appeared six years later in the popular periodical Harper’s New Monthly Magazine, sparking Hickok’s rise to national fame.

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Harley-Davidson Radical Over 26 Is All About the Massive 26-Inch Front Wheel

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by Daniel Patrascu from https://www.autoevolution.com

As some of you might have noticed over the past few days, as part of our Custom Builds Months we started covering more the side of the motorcycle industry that has to do with custom frames, because this is how you get truly unique builds.

Generally, motorcycle garages come up with a frame design and stick with it, if it works, for the limited number of bikes made based on it. But there is one such organization in Germany that has not one, but 15 custom frames, and made not a few, but literally dozens of bikes using them.

The shop is called Thunderbike, and one of those dozen bikes they made over the years is the one in the gallery above. It’s called Radical Over 26, hinting to both the type of frame used, and the size of one of the wheels that support it.

First, the frame. Thunderbike has about six Radical frames in their portfolio, ranging from lowriders to the extremely curved one that formed the basis of this machine. This one allows for the integration of Twin Cam B engines, and is made of large-diameter cold rolled ST52 steel tubing.

To power it along the shop chose a Harley-Davidson Screamin’ Eagle 103 good for 100 ps and gifted it with a Mikuni HSR 42 carburetor and a custom exhaust system.

As for the element that makes the bike stand out perhaps the most, the wheels are seriously imbalanced in terms of size, and that, coupled with the very low seating position and the raised handlebar really make the motorcycle worthy of the Radical name.

Up front, the shop went for a 26-inch wheel inspired by the one used on another of its custom builds, the Open Mind, and offset it with a significantly smaller 21-inch wheel at the rear. Alternatively, the bike can be equipped with 23-inch front and 21-inch rear wheels.

We are not being told how much it cost to make the motorcycle, but the frame alone is priced at over 11,000 euros (about $12,500).

Sam’s Bike Picks of the Week

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Hey,

We are living in such strange times. But through it all is the beauty and style of the custom bike or a gorgeous woman.

Choppers and custom motorcycles are an art form. Their glistening metal flake paint often tries to compete with the crimson clouds at sunset, just like the fine clean simplified lines of a custom motorcycle tries to compete with the lines of a slender woman’s body.

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Red Scorpion Is What Happens When Custom Frame Meets Harley-Davidson Hardware

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by Daniel Patrascu from https://www.autoevolution.com

There’s nothing better in the world of custom bike-making than coming up with your own frame. Sure, you could choose the easy way and start modifying existing motorcycles, but that doesn’t say that much about your skills as a custom builder.

We know of a huge number of shops in the U.S. making their own custom frames, that in turn end up becoming the base for incredible two-wheelers. But there are garages outside the States that do the same thing.

One of them – and a very lucrative one – is Germany-based Thunderbike. We talked about their work extensively over the past few months as part of our various special coverages, but given the large number of builds they make, there seems to be no end in sight.

Until recently, we covered at length Thunderbike’s skills when it comes to modified Harleys, but from this week on we decided to have a closer look at their custom frames, and we’ve already said a word or two about some other of their creations for this segment. And now it’s time for another.

In the gallery above sits a motorcycle the garage completed all the way back in 2007. It is called the Red Scorpion, and it is one of the finest examples of how you can pair your own custom frame with custom parts and available Harley-Davidson hardware.

The bike is part of the garage’s Freestyle collection of bikes, and it is built around one of the 15 or so frames available in its inventory.

Riding low thanks to the use of an air suspension, and with an appearance of having a broken back, the Red Scorpion is animated by a Harley-Davidson Screamin’ Eagle 103ci engine. The powerplant draws its fuel through a Mikuni HSR 42 injection system, and is controlled through a Harley 5-speed transmission.

The motorcycle rides on equally-sized 18-inch wheels front and back, chromed of course, and offset by the red paint spread on the rest of the body by Thunderbike’s favorite partner in this area, Kruse Design.

We are not being told how much the bike cost to be put together, but to give you an idea, just the Thunderbike frames now available are somewhere in the 11,000 euros (around $12,500) ballpark.

MOTOR MAIDS CONVENTION CANCELLED

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Dear Convention Sponsor and Donors, Keith & Bikernet.com 

 

Thank you for your support, It is with a heavy heart and deep sigh in our hearts, the Executive Officers in partnership with the our hosting district- SD/ND, have made the tough decision to cancel our convention in Rapid City. When the decision was made to postpone our 2020 convention to the end of August, we did so with the hope and “can do spirit”—full steam ahead–the show must go on” attitude. We were hoping for the best; but preparing for the worst.

 

Unfortunately the uncertainty about COVID 19 hot spots here in the US and the impact while traveling to and from convention and while at convention forced us to make this decision. The safety and wellbeing of our members and their family members is of paramount importance. As the borders remain closed between the US and Canada due to COVID19, we cannot in good conscience, host a convention when our Canadian members are not able attend and participate in important club business. We are not the U.S. Motor Maids nor are we the Canadian Motor Maids….

 

The Good News is we have been able to reschedule a convention for Rapid City in July 2022. With contractual obligations in 2021 this was the earliest option to reschedule our event. We hope you will continue your support and we know that 2 years will literally fly by and the members will be in the Black Hills for their “MONUMENTAL” Convention.

 

 New Dates for the 2022 Convention are July 5,6,7, 2022.

 

 We will keep your donation for our 2022 event and we will continue to promote all the generous sponsors over the meantime.

2022 Motor Maids 82ndAnnual Convention

Honoring the Past Riding to the Future
Ann Hovdenes
Motor Maids, Inc
ND/SD District Director
605-431-9121

A Mono-wheel EV That’s Basically a Motorcycle Cut in Half – The Ryno

By | General Posts

by Cristian Curmei from https://www.autoevolution.com/

It’s simply called the RYNO and it looks like the front end of my motorcycle got ripped off and you have to wheelie it home. No biggie. This thing is built like this and even functions on only this one wheel. This one-wheeled EV has no CO2 emissions and is designed for tight inner-city travels.

Designed by Christopher Hoffmann, the Ryno sports a robot-welded steel frame offering the strength needed for both components and rider. Using balance technology similar to the BMW Motorrad Vision Next 100 and Segways, all the rider needs to do is lean forward to move forward, and lean back to slow it down or stop. Sensors detect the unicycle’s center of gravity and control a motor once a sense of direction is activated. A lot like life, wouldn’t you say?

The front of the Ryno sports a classic handle-bar setup but with no front fork present, the bars are somehow glued into the frame. That same part of the frame extends forward with two rubber bumpers at the end that act as supports for the cycle when at rest. At rest, the thingamagig looks similarly to a horse that lowers its neck to the ground in order to allow its rider to mount. Also, underneath the handlebars sits a 12V DC power socket to allow you to charge your device on the go.

At the rear of the vehicle, underneath the adjustable seat, you’ll find a shock absorber that offers a smooth ride and a parking brake component. Also at the rear, you’ll find a baggage rack suitable for your groceries or a backpack. Including your baggage, this contraption can carry 260 lbs (118Kg).

One benefit of this vehicle is that it keeps the rider nearly upright. The rider is positioned more upright than on a regular street-bike due to the use of field-tested motorcycle ergonomics, offering a near walking position.

Now, remember when I mentioned that she is electric? Yeah, she does have a motor in there somewhere. Actually, she has two electric powered motors that offer the necessary torque to climb up hills, but to slow it down on a descent as well.

The juice for this puppy comes from two high output SLA batteries with an option for Lithium-Ion. On a single charge, which takes up to six hours, this unicycle can travel up to 15 miles (24km). Sure, it may not seem like much, but you have to take into consideration that it’s made to relieve traffic congestion in your hood, making it perfect for a Sunday ride through the park or around office buildings within the city.

With a top speed of 10 mph (16kph) it’s not really meant to zip you around town, rather it’s made to be able to integrate with other riders of urban mobility devices to allow similar cruising speeds. This unicycle would be perfect in leading a group of Olympic speed-walkers. But you’ll never see it leading the Tour de France.