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Honda Reveals CB-F Concept as the Future of Six Decades Old Series

By | General Posts

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

In Honda’s lineup, the CB Series is one of the most extensive. Born a little over six decades ago, the line includes everything from road to racing motorcycles. That means the family will still be around for many years to come, and a glimpse of what’s around the corner was just revealed by the Japanese.

Two major motorcycle shows were planned in Japan in the coming months, in Osaka and Tokyo, but because they were canceled on account of the coronavirus pandemic, Honda and others were left with finding alternate means of revealing their newest products.

Honda planned to show no less than 29 motorcycles at the said events, and decided to slowly unveil them online, starting Friday, March 27. The CB-F concept was the one chosen to spearhead the avalanche of models.

Developed as a preview of future CBs, the concept is said to also be a homage to past generations, including the CB900F, one of the oldest of the family.

Built on a lightweight chassis with high-tensile steel mono-backbone structure, it comes with an inverted front fork suspension and an aluminum single-sided Pro-Arm at the rear. Both should make the bike ideal for use on both urban and winding roads.

Powering the bike along is a 998cc water-cooled inline 4-cylinder DOHC engine, linked to a six-speed transmission. The specs for it were not released, but the Japanese say it “eases through its rev-range and provides ample torque.”

“The CB-F Concept is the result of revisiting the CB series’ history, which reached its sixth decade last year, and thoroughly exploring what to preserve, and what to evolve with the company’s flagship sports bike,” the bike maker said in a statement.

“The CB-F Concept is an ambitious fusion of cutting edge technology with a design paying homage to the CB900FCB750F in Japan) a Japanese global model which, in part through the North American racing scene, brought to the six-decades of CB models an iconic status.”

If you plan to be kept up to date with what Honda is revealing online this weekend, check out this link, but beware, it’s in Japanese.

A Brother’s Decade-Long Seat Search

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From Los Angeles to Vegas and Back
By Gearhead with photos by Wrench

Story line started about ten years ago, during the bare bobber era. I was looking for a seat to go with an old school flat-tracker look. I had a pair of Flanders flat tracker bars, but it did not look right with the King/Queen seat. Remember, choppers were dead, done, caput.

I was looking around for that solo look, so when the wife didn’t want to ride with me, I had a solo way to go.

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Here’s Your Chance to Own a Garage-Kept Harley-Davidson Drag Motorcycle

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

It’s known as the Screaming Eagle Destroyer. It’s a factory, non-stree-legal, purpose-built drag racing motorcycle capable of doing a quarter mile in under ten seconds as if it’s nothing. And it’s incredibly rare.

The motorcycle you see in the gallery above is the drag race-bred VRXSE Screaming Eagle Destroyer put together by Harley’s Custom Vehicle Operations (CVO) back in 2006. One that, unlike most others of its kind, has been kept locked up and never used on the strip.

In all its history, there were just a little over 600 units of the Destroyer ever built, and even that was a stretch given the fact Harley initially planned for a production run that was about half that size. So, yes, they are rare, and ones that have been kept as museum pieces can be considered non-existent. But thing is there is at least one such motorcycle in perfect condition, and it’s for sale, on the luxury-oriented DuPont Registry website.

Just like all others of its kind, this dragster motorcycle is powered by the same 79ci (1,300 cc) 165 hp V-twin engine, only it features a wide range of race equipment, including a long stroke flywheel, high compression forged pistons, a pneumatic shifter, and larger throttle bodies, among others.

The bike also comes with other extra features envisioned by CVO, including a stroker crankshaft, a racing transmission with a multi-stage lock up clutch, programmable shift light, and two-stage launch control.

Unlike all other bikes of its kind, it has been kept by its owner in a “museum-like” condition alongside other dragsters, meaning it’s dying to go out and have some fun on the tarmac.

The price for the bike is not listed on the said website, but given the fact one sold as new back in the day for a little over $30,000, don’t expect this one to be a lot cheaper.

Is It Safe To Ride My Motorcycle During The Outbreak?

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by Sabrina Giacomini from https://www.rideapart.com

The fun type of social distancing.

UPDATE: Note that there could be lockdowns and “stay at home” orders in your city or your state as the situation evolves and we don’t recommend you overlook them because “riding is seemingly safe”. We’re not your mom, but we recommend you follow your local authorities’ recommendations.

Some readers also pointed out that I didn’t discuss about the possibility of crashes since the question was focused on the virus but I thought it was a good point to touch on. Going for a ride has its risks, whether it’s coming in contact with the virus or getting into a crash. The streets are quieter but it doesn’t mean there’s no risk of making a mistake or of being hit by someone.

Remember that medical facilities and staff are strained at the moment. While riding is relatively safe from a contagion perspective, there’s still the usual risk of an incident that could require you go to the hospital—and this is not a good time to go to the hospital. Keep that in mind.

As we wrote already, the better we cooperate, the smarter we go about this,the sooner we’ll get to go back out there without restrictions. Stay safe everyone!

Is it safe to ride during this outbreak? Are my full-face helmet, gloves, and other apparel able to protect me? Are motorcycle riders risk-free? Just question to exercise our riding knowledge. – Ancarlos

Hi Ancarlos! Thank you for asking your question, I’m pretty sure you’re not the only one wondering about that. Please note, however, that though we like to think we know a lot of things at RideApart, we’re also not doctors. If you have any real concerns or are considered a potentially vulnerable patient, asking someone who is an actual doctor is the one way you’ll get reliable answers. This goes for anyone reading this.

I can, however, give you a few pointers. As “social distancing” is on target to become Merriam-Webster’s 2020 term of the year, riding a motorcycle checks a lot of those “distancing” boxes. See, the great thing about riding a motorcycle is that you get to do it alone and it isolates you in a certain way—provided you don’t head out in a group. After all, everyone else around you is over six feet away, right?

The riding itself doesn’t technically pose a problem but the small things we do when we get on and off the saddle might. Where riding a bike might present a risk of exposure is when you stop in crowded places like at a gas station or in coffee shops, for example. Fuel nozzles are pretty nasty, to begin with, and considering the current situation, they could be carriers for the bug.

Consider bringing a few cleaning wipes or a pair of disposable gloves, just in case you need to fuel up. Even a plastic bag to handle the nozzle is a good alternative to putting your hand directly on it. Once you’re done, be extra safe and wash your hands.

If you do end up using your riding gloves to pick up the nozzle, keep in mind that certain sources suggest that the virus can stay on soft surfaces like clothes (and gear) and its lifespan on different surfaces and materials has yet to be confirmed. If your riding gloves have been in contact with a potentially infected surface, avoid touching your face with them—including that pesky itchy nose!—and throw your gloves in the washer once you’re home. If the gloves are made of leather, you can find a few easy tips to disinfect your leather safely online.

Medical Grade Gear?

To answer your question about gear, keep in mind that motorcycle gear isn’t made from medical grade materials. It’s designed to protect us from bad falls and impacts, not from microscopic bugs. So no, I won’t say that your gear will protect you from the novel coronavirus. It creates a barrier against the elements, that’s true, but it’s permeable, so don’t think that you become invincible by wearing a motorcycle helmet and a jacket.

If you avoid crowds and enjoy the ride by staying on your bike, then you are following the social distancing recommendations. So in summary, yes, riding a motorcycle should be safe—just remember that, as with any form of outing at the moment, there’s never a 100-percent guarantee that you won’t get in contact with the bug. The smarter you go about this, the lower the risks.

You can check out the World Health Organization’s (WHO) recommendations and updates on the situation here. If you present any symptoms or have been in contact with someone who presents them or who has recently traveled, then postpone your ride for a while (14-day self-isolation recommended) for your own benefit and everyone else’s. It’s a small price to pay to make sure a normal riding season (and life) resumes sooner rather than later.

Harley-Davidson LiveWire Breaks 24-Hour Distance Record

By | General Posts

by Elena Gorgan from https://www.autoevolution.com

One of the main complaints lodged against the Harley-Davidson LiveWire is the short range offered on a single charge, of just 140 miles. That doesn’t mean it’s not made for touring, though.

Swiss rider Michel von Tell has just set a new world record for the longest tour in under 24 hours for an electric motorcycle, covering over 1,000 miles on a LiveWire. The bad news is that the record won’t be recognized by the Guinness Book of World Records, as von Tell did not have Guinness officials present.

Electroauto-news reports (via Electrek) that von Tell started in Zurich, Switzerland and covered four countries and a total of 1,723 km (1,070 miles) on the LiveWire, in 23 hours and 48 minutes. He reached Stuttgart, Germany and then traveled to Singen, before heading to Ruggell, Lichtenstein, the final stop on his journey.

He used Level 3 DC Fast Charge for charging stops, which considerably cut down stop times. Level 1 on the LiveWire uses a regular wall outlet and takes an entire night for a full charge. Level 3 guarantees a faster charge: a nearly full battery in 40 minutes or so. According to the media outlet, von Tell would stop for charging on Level 3 for an average of 25 minutes whenever he needed to.

The previous 24-hour record for an electric motorcycle was set in 2018 on a Zero S fitted with optional Charge Tank and using a team of riders, on a test track. Von Tell traveled in traffic, on the highway and was all alone.

While he couldn’t afford the Guinness fee, which would have ensured officials were on hand to confirm the record, and didn’t have a method to do the electronic self-recording required for Guinness confirmation, von Tell did provide signed witness accounts as confirmation. This makes his LiveWire 24-hour tour the unofficial record holder for the longest on an electric motorcycle to date.

Coronavirus Delays Voxan Motors’ Electric Motorcycle Speed Record Attempt

By | General Posts

by Sebastian Blanco from https://www.forbes.com/

It’s a specific category, but the Venturi Group’s Voxan Motors is working to create the fastest electric motorcycle in the world. Well, the fastest electric motorcycle “propelled by the action of one wheel in contact with the ground, partially streamlined, under 300 kg,” according to the team website.

That specific record is currently held by Jim Hoogerhyde, who rode a Lightning SB220 electric bike to 203.566 mph in 2013, according to Jalopnik. Voxan has set a target of 205 mph for its attempt but the date of the record attempt has been pushed back.

The new world speed record attempt was supposed to happen in July 2020 at the Salar de Uyuni salt flats in Bolivia, but that has been indefinitely postponed due to the cornoavirus. The Venturi Group, which is based in Monaco, issued a statement today saying that it is following the health directives issued by the Monegasque Government and that: “The development teams responsible for the Voxan Wattman motorcycle, which has just completed its initial on-track testing, are now confined to their homes.” Without being able to get together to work on the bike, the team can’t fine-tune the machine on-track, leading to the postponement.

“The health and safety of my teams is paramount. In view of the current health crisis, I have put in place the necessary measures. All of my staff, whether they are attached to Venturi North America (Columbus, Ohio) or to the headquarters in Monaco, are now working from home,” said Gildo Pastor, president of Venturi Group, in a statement. “We will establish a new calendar of operations as soon as the health situation allows it, and announce the new operational arrangements for this project, which is very important to me personally.”

The bike Voxan was (is) going to use to try and set the new speed record is a tweaked version of its Wattman, originally introduced in 2013. The normal Wattman bike is capable of accelerating from zero to 62 miles per hour in 3.4 seconds thanks to its 203-horsepower all-electric powertrain that produces 147.5 pound-feet of torque. Voxan’s high-performance version of the Wattman has been upgraded to produce 367 horsepower in order to hit that 205 mile-per-hour target.

The Venturi Group acquired Voxan in 2010 and shifted the brand’s focus to use electric motors. Both versions of the Wattman (on-road and high-performance) were designed by Venturi’s long-serving lead designer, Sacha Lakic.

The speed record attempt, whenever it happens, is likely to still be driven by Max Biaggi, a two-time World Superbike champion (2010 and 2012). He officially retired from racing in 2012, but has raced a few times since then.

The Harley-Davidson That Tried and Failed to Become World’s Most Expensive Bike

By | General Posts

In August 2020, 43 years will have passed since Elvis Presley, the king of rock ‘n’ roll, or simply The King, died of an overdose on prescription drugs. To this day, he remains one of the most iconic figures in pop culture.

Even after all these years, Elvis is still considered a top artist in music. He made dozens of movies as well and, while they’re all popular in their own right, they do not speak of his artistry but rather of his desire to capitalize on his music career. In short, he made too many of them, of too questionable quality.

Even in death, The King is still a top-selling artist, which drives up the price to every item that he owned, ranging from his clothes (the flamboyant outfits from his final years, in particular), to his guns, letters and photographs, and last but not least, his impressive car and motorcycle collection. As you probably know, the richer Elvis got, the more he liked to splurge on fancy riders, be they on two or four wheels, and occasionally on three.

Another thing that Elvis was famous for where his car and bikes collection is concerned is the fact that he hardly kept any item around for too long. He would often buy stuff in the spur of the moment, enjoy it for some time and then pass it along, either by gifting it to friends and associates, or reselling it.

This brief introduction is necessary when talking about the last motorcycle he ever bought, which is also the Harley-Davidson mentioned in the headline: a 1976 FLH 1200 Electra Glide that aimed to set a new record for the world’s most expensive bike sold, back in August 2019. It failed.

In the summer of 2019, Kruse GWS Auctions’ Artifacts of Hollywood announced the upcoming auction of a new lot, containing, among others, Presley’s last bike. It was a Harley-Davidson Electra Glide that was still functional and with all the original parts from the moment of purchase, having been stored in a glass museum-quality display at the Pioneer Auto Museum in Murdo, South Dakota, for 30 years. Visitors were never allowed to touch it, so it remained in pristine condition.

In the listing, the auction house highlighted the bike’s impressive pedigree: Elvis himself had bought on August 11, 1976, after visiting a Harley-Davidson dealership to buy a Sportster 1000 for a friend – as a gift, of course. With the Electra Glide, he was very specific about what he wanted: a two-tone paintwork in black and baby blue, hand-stitched leather seat and chrome accents.

He had the bike delivered to his home, Graceland and, in true Elvis form, would pass it on after a while, when he grew bored with it. He sold it to a local Harley-Davidson dealership only days before his death, with just 126 miles on the clock. From there, it passed to the museum, where it would remain until 2019.

This impressive history, and the fact that the Harley was in top condition and with all-original parts prompted the auction house to estimate it would fetch between $1.75 million and $2 million. Which, if you think about it, is not too far-fetched for a piece of Elvis history.

Had it been able to meet this mark, it would have become the world’s most expensive bike ever sold, beating previous record holder 1951 Vincent Black Lightning used by Jake Ehret to set a speed record on in 1954, which went for $929,000 in 2018.

Surprisingly though, Elvis’ Harley not only failed to meet the lowest estimate but fell short by it by a several hundreds thousands: it went to an unknown bidder for a “mere” $800,000.

This still makes it the world’s third most expensive bike sold, but it also shows that, even when it comes to The King, there are some things you can put a price on. And it’s much lower than you think, especially if the butt of said King hardly ever touched it.

Game Over Cycles took first place in the “Over 1000 cc Custom” category

By | General Posts

Last weekend in the USA during the Daytona Bike Week, the New York-Rzeszów motorcycle built by the Polish company Game Over Cycles took first place in the “Over 1000 cc Custom” category in the Rat’s Hole Custom Bike Show. The competition was held in Florida as part of Daytona Bike Week 2020, one of the largest motorcycle events in the world, which annually gathers about 500 000 people. Rats Hole is a very prestigious and the longest (since 1952) organized custom bike show in the world. The prize awarded to the Polish machine was received by Bobbi and Lucy Wawrzaszek, Poles living in the USA, who own the motorcycle and on whose order GOC made the vehicle.

The New York – Rzeszów Motorcycle, as it is fully named, is an extraordinary custom Harley-Davidson Street Bob inspired by New York and Polish city of Rzeszów. The bike was made for a Polish couple born in the Rzeszów region and currently living in New York. The machine is intended to express local patriotism of both homelands of the vehicle owners. This is manifested in the unique design of the motorcycle, which contains characteristics of the architecture of given city. These parts are not only elements of ornamentation, but also fully functional components of the motorcycle. The main elements of the construction containing the architecture of given city are:

New York:
– wheels with Manhattan buildings engraved in metal. The wheel contains such buildings as the Empire State Building, 1 World Trade Center, Flatiron, Chrysler Building, old WTC towers
– exhaust pipe looking like the Chrysler Building (covered with 24-carat gold)
– ignition coil cover looking like The Oculus
– front plow in the shape of old WTC ruins with the “9/11 Never Forget” inscription
– timing cover with NY Yankees logo (covered with 24-carat gold)
– fuel tank cap made form brass and imitating a $ 1 coin with Rzeszów-New York inscription
– tank painting containing the Brooklyn Bridge and the Manhattan skyline

Rzeszów:
– Revolutionary Act Monument – the most famous monument of the city placed in the middle of wheel among Manhattan buildings (covered with 24-carat gold)
– seat in the form of the Tadeusz Mazowiecki bridge – the largest bridge in the city. The bridge is imitated together with brass ropes attached to the fender while motorcycle’s direction indicators look like the warning lights located on the bridge
– air filter cover in the shape of city’s most known and characteristic footbridge with Rzeszów’s coat of arms in the center (covered with 24-carat gold)
– rear brake light and position light in the shape of the Rzeszów coat of arms
– tank paitning containing Rzeszów skyline

All construction elements are made of brass, steel and aluminum, while the wheels, exhaust pipe, clutch cover, timing cover, the front brake holder and wheels are additionally gold-plated.

The unveiling of the motorcycle took place in May 2019 in New York, in the premises of Harley-Davidson of New York City.

 

Stripped Down Harley-Davidson Muscle Bike Is the Treat to Wait for in 2021

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

Despite the fact that it is probably the world’s most famous motorcycle brand, Harley-Davidson seems to be struggling to come to grips with the realities of the age. Plagued by financial problems, Harley recently lost its CEO, and more stormy weather seems to be looming ahead.

There are however plans in place for a turnaround. These plans cover everything from new models to the reinvention of the dealership network.

As far as new products are concerned, we already talked about the two new motorcycles Harley plans to launch by the end of this year. Both – the Bronx and Pan America – are built on a new middleweight platform and use new Revolution Max family of engines.

But perhaps more exciting than anything is the return of the bike maker to the custom scene, with a yet unnamed motorcycle announced for 2021.

Previewed at about the same time with the other two, the custom machine is described as one with “a muscular stance, aggressive, stripped-down styling and 1250cc of pure performance.”

Officially, that’s about it when it comes to this product fom now, but by the way it looks (see in the gallery above) and given the fact that the Pan America will use the same 1250cc Revolution Max engine with 145 hp and 90 lb-ft of torque, we expect the specs on the custom to be even more extraordinary.

All the bikes we mentioned here are part of a plan meant to reinvent the company by 2022 and increase the number of Harley customers by 1 million by 2027, for a total of 4 million in the U.S. alone.

“The bold actions we are announcing today leverage Harley-Davidson’s vast capabilities and competitive firepower – our excellence in product development and manufacturing, the global appeal of the brand and of course, our great dealer network,” said in a statement back in 2019, when the moves were announced, Matt Levatich, at the time the company’s CEO.

“Alongside our existing loyal riders, we will lead the next revolution of two-wheeled freedom to inspire future riders who have yet to even think about the thrill of riding.”

This 1937 Harley-Davidson UH Is the Best You’ll Find Anywhere

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

Decades-old motorcycles are not as widespread as cars. Whereas in the world today there are countless four-wheeled machines, in better or worse condition, going back perhaps a century or so, not the same can be said about two-wheelers.

That essentially means that when we come across a bike as old as the one we’re going to write about here, there’s reason to gloat. Especially because we’re talking about one that was built, in very limited numbers, in the years before the start of the second world war, but runs just as good as it did back then.

What’s being displayed in the gallery above is a 1937 Harley-Davidson UH. It is one of just 185 made in 1937, just a few short years before all civilian bike production would be halted to make room for the WLAs requested by the U.S. Army in the years that followed. Of the 185, this one here is probably the only one that (still) looks this good.

And it owes its looks to a restoration process that tried to stay as close to the original as possible.

Part of the U model family, the UH is powered by the same 80ci engine that was fitted on it back in the day. It runs, as it was rebuilt while keeping all the innovations brought by Harley to the U that year, including the recirculating oil system instead of a total-loss one, and dry-sump lubrication.

The engine sits inside the original frame of the bike, and so is that era’s dash, Parts of the bike hiding beneath the blue and white bodywork may seem a bit different, but that’s because many of the original parts have been chromed during the restoration process.

When the bike was made, it sold for a little over $400. Now, someone is selling it during the Mecum Glendale auction that starts on Wednesday, March 11, and they’ll probably get a lot more for it.