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The Cloud Nine Bikernet Weekly News for January 23rd

By | General Posts

May all bikers find their Nirvana in 2020

Hey,

It’s an amazing week. I want it to be this amazing for all bikers all over the world. I want all of us to be building the coolest shit, riding to the coolest places, meeting the most beautiful girls and enjoying every minute of it.

On Tuesday, we nervously took the Salt Torpedo into the desert for some passes on a desolate paved road. I can’t tell you where we went. It’s a top-speed secret, that only coyotes and bleak desert bikers know about. What a trip.

Watch for the whole highly successful run report in a story in the next few days on Bikernet. Let’s hit the news. I’m still floating on Cloud Nine.

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Upbeat Bikernet Weekly News for January 2, 2020

By | General Posts

Hey,

I like this year already. It’s going to be whacky and wonderful. It’s just the 2nd day of January and the world is back in business. We’re all doing what we did a couple of weeks ago, going about taking the trash out, feeding the dog and heading off to work.

Hell, I have all the Deadlines for Cycle Source Magazine etched into my 2020 Pin-Up calendar. We need to break the mold for 2020. Do something crazy. I’m going to go back to Bonneville this year with something completely different.

And I’m trying to buy a little place in Deadwood, SD and change up my life some. I hope everyone finds new challenges, new hope, new adventures and new love in 2020.

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Going electric could help revive the motorcycle industry

By | General Posts

by Peter Valdes-Dapena from https://edition.cnn.com/

Motorcycle sales, particularly in the United States, have been struggling ever since the Great Recession. As older riders lose interest, or simply become unable to ride any longer, the younger generation hasn’t been showing the same kind of enthusiasm.

But the industry is hoping that electric motorcycles — with a quieter, simpler experience — might be the key to attracting new riders.

For one thing, electric motorcycles are easier to ride. With an electric motor, there’s no need to shift gears. To experienced riders, that’s no big deal, but most Americans today have become accustomed to automatic transmissions and don’t know how to shift gears.

“It’s just a lot easier learning curve,” said Susan Carpenter, a writer and radio host specializing in motorcycles. “You just hop on and twist the throttle. If you can balance, you can go.”

Another benefit is that electric motorcycles are much less noisy than gasoline-powered motorcycles. To many veteran riders, the roar of the engine is part of the excitement. But a lot of other people would prefer to enjoy their surroundings much more peacefully. The bikes also don’t have hot engines and exhaust pipes that can become burn hazards, especially when parked around kids.

Electric motorcycles also qualify for federal and state tax credits, similar to those for electric cars, although in smaller amounts.

There are tradeoffs, of course. Electric motorcycles have the same disadvantages as electric cars, namely cost and range. Motorcycles can only accommodate small batteries so they have a lot less range than gas-powered bikes. And that range diminishes greatly during high-speed highway riding because the bike’s electric motor has to compensate for increased wind resistance pressing against the rider’s not-so-aerodynamic body.

Hoping to get the attention of a new generation of riders, Harley-Davidson introduced the LiveWire electric motorcycle earlier this year.

But with a starting price of nearly $30,000 — more than three times the cost of an entry level motorcycle — it’s unlikely to attract many novice riders. With its extreme performance capabilities — it can go from zero to 60 miles per hour in just three seconds — the LiveWire doesn’t appear to be for first-time riders. (The bike does have selectable performance modes so it can be set up for less aggressive riding.)

“LiveWire sets the stage and sets the tone and is designed and priced to be a halo vehicle,” said Harley-Davidson spokesman Paul James, explaining that the LiveWire is aimed at establishing an image for the brand’s electric offerings rather than being a big seller. “And we’ll quickly follow that up with other form factors and other electric two-wheelers that will be in various price points and aimed at different customers.”

Harley-Davidson (HOG) wanted this bike to get people used to the idea of a motorcycle that doesn’t have the brand’s signature engine burble, said James. The LiveWire does make its own distinct sound, though. It comes from the gears that carry power from the electric motor to the belt that spins the back wheel. Harley-Davidson engineers spent time specifically tuning the naturally occurring whirring sound, much as they would the rumble of a gasoline engine.

For the real novices, Harley-Davidson offers the IronE, which targets tiny riders aged three to seven. The teeny off-road bike is powered by a small detachable battery similar to ones used for electric power tools and starts at around $650. Harley-Davidson has also shown pedaled e-bikes and scooters as concepts.

California-based Zero offers electric motorcycles like the Zero FX ZF3.6 for around $9,000. That bike has an estimated 27 miles of riding range from a small battery that can be easily changed for a fully charged one when it runs low on power. For about twice that amount, or around $20,000, bikes like the Zero SR/F can get about 123 miles in combined city and highway riding. (That compares to the 95 miles Harley-Davidson estimates for the LiveWire.) Buyers can also add battery power using a “Power Tank” accessory.

Zero’s bikes are used in a program called Discover the Ride, which introduces novice riders to motorcycle riding and takes place at Progressive International Motorcycle Shows across the United States. Riders demonstrate their basic two-wheeler skills on an electrically-assisted bicycle, then they are offered a ride on a Zero electric motorcycle.

Cake, a Swedish company, has models starting at a slightly more affordable $8,500. For that price, a buyer can get Cake’s ultra-minimalist Ösa+ model. Its design was inspired by a workbench and it looks like it. With detachable clamps, the owner can quickly customize the bike with cargo racks or an additional seat. The Ösa+ has a top speed of just 60 miles an hour. It’s intended as an urban workhorse.

Cake also makes the slightly faster and pricier Kalk& with a more traditional, but still distinctively spare, design.

With their emphasis on light weight and simplicity, Cake bikes take the idea that electric motorcycling should be different from riding a gas-powered bike to an extreme. The models are particularly popular with new riders, according to a company spokesman. After being available in the US for a little over a year, there’s a three-month waiting list for the bikes, Cake claims.

Royal Enfield 250cc motorcycle to be called Hunter ?

By | General Posts

by Nithyanandh Karuppaswamy from https://www.rushlane.com/

It is no secret that Royal Enfield is working on a whole new range of next generation motorcycles.

Recent reports suggest that the retro-classic specialist is planning to tap into new audience bases. The Chennai-based two wheeler maker is reportedly working on variant extensions to specifically target women and youth.

The recent trademark application by Royal Enfield adds gravity to these claims. The trademark ‘Royal Enfield Hunter’ has been filed by the company and this could be used as a nameplate for one of the new products.

It is too early to speculate on the body style or displacement class of the new thumper in question but if we were to wager, we would put our money on a youthful variant off the new J modular platform which will also underpin the next generation Bullet, Classic and Thunderbird families.

The 2020 Royal Enfield Classic and Thunderbird prototypes have been testing extensively in public, giving us a fair idea on what sort of hardware to expect. The motorcycles receive all new engine, improved frame and continue to employ conventional suspension arrangement (telescopic front fork and gas-charged twin rear shock absorbers). While the bodywork retains the RE identity, every panel seems to be reprofiled subtly to impart a fresh appeal.

Needless to say, the new RE range will feature BS-6 compliant engines. The company is not likely to deviate drastically from the existing displacement classes but considering that the engines are all-new, expect some slight differences in the numbers. Fuel injection will be standard across the range and outputs are expected to increase considerably. Off course, most models will have dual-channel ABS as standard while low-cost variants could settle for single-channel units.

Royal Enfield will start its BS-6 campaign by updating the 650 Twins (Interceptor and Continental GT). The existing Classic 350 will also receive BS-6 update, signalling that the next gen models will not be launched before April 2020. Reports suggest that 500 cc models will be discontinued until their successors are ready sometime in the later part of year.

Like most other two wheeler OEMs in the country, Royal Enfield has been going through a rough patch due to general industry slow down. The new range of products will hopefully help the brand pick up pace.

The Consummate Bikernet Weekly News for December 12, 2019

By | General Posts

Hey,

Knowledge, understanding, the Way, and technology: They are all flying at us fast. Hell, I don’t know where to start. Awhile back I mentioned business owners and their constant challenges, from the government, technology, competition and the market. Those challenges are more daunting than ever before and more beneficial in many respects.

Personal life is also being bombarded with new and beneficial challenges. I was hit with a hot handful of thought-provoking opportunities and philosophies this week.

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AMA News and Notes December 2019

By | General Posts

National and Regional News

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The National Transportation Safety Board called on federal regulators Nov. 19 to create a review process before allowing automated test vehicles to operate on public roads, based upon the agency’s investigation of a fatal collision between an Uber automated test vehicle and a pedestrian on March 18, 2018, in Tempe, Ariz. The NTSB said the Uber Technologies Inc. division’s “inadequate safety culture” contributed to the fatal crash. the 2017 Volvo XC90 was equipped with a proprietary developmental automated driving system. The vehicle’s factory-installed forward collision warning and automatic emergency braking systems were deactivated during the operation of the automated system. The NTSB said the operator of the Volvo was “visually distracted throughout the trip by a personal cell phone.” The AMA believes that thorough testing of automated vehicles should be performed before they are permitted on public roadways, where they can endanger the lives of motorcyclists, pedestrians and other vulnerable road users.

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. Tom Udall (D-N.M.) and U.S. Rep. Peter Welch (D-Vt.) introduced companion bills to reform the Renewable Fuel Standard by reducing the harmful environmental effects of the corn ethanol mandate and advancing biofuels that they say reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The GREENER Fuels Act (Growing Renewable Energy through Existing and New Environmentally Responsible Fuels Act) would phase out the corn ethanol mandate and immediately reduce the amount of ethanol in fuel by as much as 1 billion gallons by capping the amount of ethanol that can be blended into conventional gasoline at 9.7 percent. The AMA, the National Wildlife Federation and the Sierra Club support the bill. The AMA objects to increased amounts of ethanol in the nation’s fuel supply, because none of the estimated 22 million motorcycles and ATVs in use in America is certified by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to operate on fuel containing more than 10 percent ethanol.

State News

PASADENA, Calif. – The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in favor of the Friends of Oceano Dunes, directing the lower court to allow a lawsuit to proceed against the California Coastal Commission and California State Parks. The lawsuit, filed in 2017, claims that the agencies are violating the federal Endangered Species Act by issuing permits and approvals for new dust control measures at the Oceano Dunes State Vehicular Recreation Area. “Dust control” is used to restrict use of the area for responsible motorized recreation. A U.S. District Court judge in Los Angeles stopped the lawsuit in 2017, but the appeals court held that the district judge did not follow the law in the ruling. The lawsuit is against Coastal Commission Executive Director Jack Ainsworth and State Parks’ Director Lisa Mangat.

SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. – The Air Pollution Control District decided Nov. 18 to close 48 acres of the Oceano Dunes State Vehicular Recreation Area to campers and off-road enthusiasts. The four-dune area is scheduled to close in January. District officials said the decision was made in an effort to reduce air pollution. California State Parks has pledged to reduce air pollution in the area by 50 percent by 2023. Fencing eventually will be used to restrict access to the area. But signs will be used until approval for the fence is obtained from the California Coastal Commission. The closing means 50 percent less beach side camping.

DENVER – The application deadline is Dec. 2 for the Colorado Parks and Wildlife 2020 Off-Highway Vehicle grants, which combines OHV registration and permit fees with federal Recreation Trails Program funds. Organizations or agencies with management responsibilities over public lands may apply for Good Management Trail Crew Grants or Programmatic Project Grants. Federal, state, local government agencies and nonprofit OHV project sponsors are eligible to apply for grants of up to 100 percent of the project cost. For more information, to download an application or to review the full OHV grant application process, visit www.cpw.state.co.us.

LANSING, Mich. – The AMA, working with ABATE of Michigan, supports S.B. 528 as a fix to the current discriminatory situation Michigan’s motorcyclists find themselves in when it comes to insurance claims. S.B. 1 was signed into law this year, making wide-ranging changes to Michigan’s No-Fault insurance system. Under S.B. 1, a motorcyclist is only able to claim medical expenses up to the cap chosen by the other driver on their insurance policy. These caps can be as low as $50,000 and could potentially fall far short of the expenses incurred by a motorcyclist involved in a crash with another driver. However, the same is not true for drivers and pedestrians who are able to claim medical expenses under their own insurance policies and can therefore chose the cap they feel is appropriate for them. S.B. 528 is a simple legislative fix that allows motorcyclists the same rights as other drivers and pedestrians by allowing them to file a claim under their own insurance policy and no longer be restricted in claiming medical expenses by the choice of a cap made by the other driver.

ALBANY, N.Y. – A bill passed both chambers of the New York State legislature and is waiting for Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s signature that would provide more incentive for the state to repair hazardous road conditions. A. 1235, sponsored by Assemblyman Thomas J. Abinanti (D- Westchester County), and S. 5422, sponsored by state Sen. Timothy M. Kennedy (D-Buffalo), expand the state’s liability for damages suffered by road users due to defects in state highways, if the state Department of Transportation was notified of the defect and failed to repair it. Currently, the state is liable for these damages for part of the year. This bill expands that liability year-round. While bad potholes can be a frustration for drivers, they can be a deadly threat to riders. The AMA supports this bill because it provides a strong incentive for more prompt repairs of road defects and could save motorcyclists’ lives. The AMA urges New York residents to contact Gov. Cuomo, a fellow motorcyclist, and request he sign this bill into law. Click here to contact the governor.

COLUMBUS, Ohio – The state Department of Natural Resources’ Forestry Division bought 1,405 acres to add to the Pike State Forest and double the size of the forest’s All-Purpose Vehicle area. APVs include dirt bikes and ATVs. The state is using State Recreational Vehicle funds to buy 1,005 acres now and the 400 acres next year. The funds come from APV registration fees. After construction, riders will have an additional 40 miles of trails. A shelter house, APV camping area and 4 miles of trails opened at the forest in August.

International News

WARRENDALE, Pa. – Honda has joined the Automated Vehicle Safety Consortium, an international group of car makers and technology companies collaborating on the development of best safety practices for automated vehicles. Honda is the only member of the consortium that also manufactures motorcycles. Other consortium members include SAE International, Ford, General Motors, Toyota, Uber ATG, Daimler and Lyft. The AMA believes that automated vehicles may eventually help make the roadways safer for motorcyclists, but only if the vehicles can adequately detect and properly adjust to motorcycles in their immediate vicinity.

BUCHAREST, Romania – Motorcyclists have been successfully battling plans to enact an environmental tax on all cars and motorcycles. MotoADN, the Romanian member of the Federation of European Motorcyclist Associations, got motorcycles and scooters excluded from the tax, according to a FEMA report. The tax was intended to reduce air pollution in the city. MotoADN argued that air pollution is less affected by motorcycles and scooters than by cars and trucks.

Industry News

IRVINE, Calif. – Erik Pritchard assumed the role of chief executive officer and president of the Motorcycle Industry Council, Specialty Vehicle Institute of America, Motorcycle Safety Foundation and Recreational Off-Highway Vehicle Association of America. Pritchard joined the associations as general counsel in March 2014 following more than a decade supporting the associations as outside counsel on a variety of litigation and non-litigation matters. He was named president of SVIA and ROHVA in 2017. One initiative Pritchard will oversee is the long-term, industry-wide effort led by the MIC to boost motorcycle ridership-more riders, riding more. Details about the plan were announced Nov. 21 at the annual MIC Communications Symposium in Long Beach, Calif.

ROME – Mahindra’s European two-wheel subsidiary is taking over the entire Peugeot scooter division from PSA and plans to introduce seven new scooters during the next two years. Mahindra already held a 51 percent stake in the company. The buyout ends Mahindra’s partnership with the PSA Group, which sells Peugeot, Citroen, DS, Opel and Vauxhall cars.

TOKYO – Kawasaki Heavy Industries has acquired 49.9 percent of Italian motorcycle manufacturer Bimota, through the Kawasaki subsidiary Italian Motorcycle Investment. The remainder of the stock will be retained by B and Motion S.A., formerly known as Bimota S.A. Bimota will continue to be an Italian company, based in Rimini and employing Italian designers and craftsmen. Going forward, all Bimota motorcycles will be powered by Kawasaki engines. In the past, Bimota licensed engines from different manufacturers.

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Motorcycle Riders Foundation has named Tiffany Cipoletti its director of government relations. In her new role, she will focus on carrying out the MRF’s legislative strategy and provide support for the group’s national motorcyclists’ lobby day, Bikers Inside the Beltway. She will retain her role as editor of American Bikers Journal. As part of the change, the MRF also contracted with JPK Services for membership services, day-to-day accounting, phone services and event support for Bikers Inside the Beltway and Meeting of the Minds.

AMA News

PICKERINGTON, Ohio – The 2019 AMA Legends & Champions Weekend is Dec. 6-7 at the Hilton Columbus Downtown in Columbus, Ohio. The 2019 KTM AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony on Dec. 6 will welcome the Hall of Fame Class of 2019: rights advocate Mark Buckner, off-road racing champion Kurt Caselli, motocross champion Ron Lechien, trials pioneer Wiltz Wagner and museum founder Dale Walksler. On Dec. 7, the 2019 KTM AMA Championship Banquet will honor the national champions in all disciplines sanctioned by the AMA. In addition, the AMA will host its annual AMA Congress on Dec. 6-7, where AMA Commission members will discuss rules governing AMA-sanctioned events. Tickets for AMA Legends & Champions Weekend are available now at http://events.constantcontact.com/register/event?llr=vw9ldxbab&oeidk=a07egk6666t3e98bda6. Tickets also can be purchased over the phone at (800) 262-5646. Reservations can be made at the Hilton Columbus Downtown at https://book.passkey.com/event/49921089/owner/9521521/home.

PICKERINGTON, Ohio – Three U.S. ISDE teams took top honors in their respective classes at the 94th FIM International Six Days Enduro, winning the World Trophy, Women’s World Trophy and Club team divisions. The U.S. Junior World Trophy team finished second place in its class. The United States won its first World Trophy crown in 2016, and all three of its Trophy teams finished as runners-up in 2018. The full story is available at www.americanmotorcyclist.com/american-teams-win-three-titles-at-2019-isde and in the January issue of American Motorcyclist magazine.

PICKERINGTON, Ohio – Get your tickets and make your plans to be at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington, Ohio, July 10-12 for 2020 AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days. AMA members can purchase discounted tickets now at www.amavintagemotorcycledays.com/tickets. AMA members save an additional $5 off the already discounted early bird pricing. AMA members can also call (614) 856-1900 to order their tickets. A fundraiser for the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame, AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days showcases classic motorcycles of all makes and styles, and honors the riders who made them famous. Activities at the event include the AMA Vintage Grand Championship, which features road racing, motocross, hare scrambles, trials and flat-track racing. In addition, North America’s largest motorcycle swap meet is packed with parts, bikes and memorabilia from all eras. Bike shows feature some of history’s most beloved motorcycles. Attendees will be entertained by stunt shows, demo rides of current production bikes and live music, while seminars on numerous topics by noted motorcycling experts keep them informed. Non-AMA members and those reserving RV spaces must purchase tickets through Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. These tickets will be available in December online at midohio.com or by calling (419) 884-4000. AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days is a family-friendly event. Admission is free for children under 12 accompanied by a ticketed adult. Free parking is also available on site.

The Thanksgiving 2019 Bikernet Weekly News

By | General Posts

Hey,

Making progress is a major motivator. I like to climb out of bed thinking the day is going to be exciting. This week I solved some issues, took my 1928 Shovelhead to Larry Settle for a look-over. We organized and shipped Hugh King’s Discovery Channel biker build-off bike to the Sturgis Museum.

We attempted to get two girders from Spitfire Motorcycles. We scored a few Antiques motorcycle parts from Bobby Stark’s lot.

I solved a minor issue with the Salt Torpedo and we are just a couple of weeks away from our first trial runs. I roughed out another Cantina Chapter.

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Whacky Bikernet Weekly News for November 21, 2019

By | General Posts

Hey,

A couple of infrastructure changes. From now on, we will post the news on the Free side of the Bikernet Iron Curtain for one week each week. We will also do the same with selected articles before slipping them into Bandit’s Cantina archives for our esteemed members.

We need members, but I want the largest readership to check the news. We also need to inform the largest possible audience of the issues facing motorcycling and of happenings on Bikernet. So, what the fuck, I’m giving it a shot.

Let’s hit the news. It’s going to be a good one:

CLICK HERE TO READ THE BIKERNET WEEKLY NEWS NOW !!!

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The Tune-up Bikernet Weekly News for November 7, 2019

By | General Posts

I’m going to be glad when this year is toast

By Bandit, Wayfarer, Rogue, Jim Houck, Laura, the Redhead, Sam, RFR, Bob T. and the rest of the gang

Okay, just relax. That’s the name of my accountant’s business. Shit is happening fast on most fronts and I’m going to Deadwood to relax and slip in the snow.

There’s a side of me that wants to find a place in the Midwest, where I can chill and breathe in the home of the old west and the center of the Chopper World. Motorcycles have always been my home. I like the sound of Bandit in the Badlands.

Let’s hit the news.

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