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Can you Ride with a Pet on your Motorcycle?

By General Posts

ASK A TROOPER: “Motorcycle Riding Dog”
by Ryan Janke from https://kfgo.com/

Question: Can someone with a motorcycle permit have their small dog riding on the motorcycle or would that be considered a passenger? We have already purchased a helmet and leather jacket for this lucky pup! Thank you for your response.

Answer: First of all, where will this dog be seated and how? I see less issues if you are talking about a motorcycle side car or a motorcycle trailer equipped with a kennel. But if you are talking about on the actual motorcycle with you, I don’t think this would be very safe for you or your pet.

If you are going to carry a passenger, there are a few key items to keep in mind:

Equip and Adjust Your Motorcycle:

  • A passenger seat and footrests are required by law.
  • Adjust tire pressure and suspension settings for the additional weight. (Do not exceed weight limitations specified in the owner’s manual.)
  • Readjust mirrors.

Passenger Preparation:

  • Provide protective riding gear: eye protection, a DOT-approved helmet, boots, gloves, long riding pants and a high-visibility motorcycle jacket.
  • Passengers under age 18 are required by law to wear a DOT-approved helmet.
  • Small children are required by law to be able to reach both footrests with their feet while sitting on the passenger seat.

Getting On and Off the Motorcycle:

  • Start the engine before the passenger gets on.
  • Squeeze the front brake while the passenger gets on or off the bike.
  • Passengers should get off the bike before the operator.

Passenger Safety Tips:

  • Hold operator’s waist or hips, or motorcycle’s passenger hand-holds.
  • Keep feet on footrests at all times, including while stopped.
  • Keep hands and feet away from hot or moving parts.
  • When turning, look over the operator’s shoulder in the direction of the turn.
  • Avoid turning around or making sudden moves that might affect operation.
  • If crossing an obstacle, rise off the seat keeping your feet on the foot pegs with knees slightly bent and allow legs to absorb the shock upon impact.

Operator Safety Tips:

  • A passenger will affect handling due to extra weight and independent motion.
  • Braking sooner with greater pressure may be necessary.
  • Use extra caution in a corner.
  • Allow more time and space for passing.
  • Be ready to counter the effects of wind.
  • Avoid extreme speeds and dramatic lean angles.

If you have any questions concerning traffic related laws or issues in Minnesota, send your questions to Trp. Jesse Grabow – Minnesota State Patrol at 1000 Highway 10 West, Detroit Lakes, MN 56501-2205. (You can follow him on Twitter @MSPPIO_NW).

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METZELER CRUISETEC Tires and New Indian Motorcycle Pursuit Lineup

By General Posts

METZELER CRUISETEC™ tires were developed to provide the performance of METZELER’s award winning sport touring tires to riders of heavyweight cruisers and baggers motorcycles.

METZELER CRUISETEC Tires Selected as Original Equipment Tires of New Indian Motorcycle Pursuit Lineup

The next generation of American touring performance motorcycles will be factory equipped with METZELER CRUISETEC™ tires.

Rome, GA – March 29, 2022 – METZELER USA is proud to announce that Indian Motorcycle has once again selected the METZELER CRUISETEC™ as original equipment tires on a new collection of models: the Indian Pursuit Dark Horse and Pursuit Limited.

Building on the already strong relationship between the German-born tire brand and America’s First Motorcycle Company, METZELER CRUISETEC™ is now the original equipment on most Cruiser, Bagger, and Touring models, including the all-new Indian Pursuit.

Indian has built the Pursuit around the comfort and features of a traditional touring bike, but with more power and attitude. These motorcycles are designed to provide both rider and passenger with ultimate luxury while also delivering a staggering 122 hp and 128 ft-lbs of torque. With a chassis-mounted fairing, premium suspension, inverted front forks, a cast-aluminum frame, and of course METZELER CRUISETEC™ tires, the Pursuit models offer rock solid stability and control.

“As Indian Motorcycle continues to push the envelope and build cutting v-twin motorcycles that are extremely powerful and capable while also featuring cutting edge comfort and technology, the need for high performance tires is paramount,” explains Josh Whitmire, North America OE Manager for Metzeler. “The METZELER CRUISETEC™ is simply the perfect tire for the new Indian Pursuit models.”

METZELER CRUISETEC™ tires will offer Pursuit riders unparalleled performance and grip in all riding conditions.

The METZELER CRUISETEC™ was especially designed to offer superior grip, handling, control and durability under the intense forces produced by today’s heavyweight and high powered motorcycles. Dual compound rear tires promote fast warm-up and chemical grip even in wet conditions, while the brush-like tread pattern helps clear water and keep your motorcycle glued to the road. The profile, reminiscent of a more aggressive sport touring tire, helps maximize the contact patch while cornering and offers incredible stability for those riding with a passenger.

OE Fitment:
Front Tires: METZELER CRUISETEC™ 130/60B19 M/C TL Reinf
Rear Tires: METZELER CRUISETEC™ 180/60R16 M/C TL 80H Reinf (I)

For more information on the new Pursuit Dark Horse and Pursuit LImited models from Indian Motorcycle, visit www.indianmotorcycle.com. To learn more about the METZELER CRUISETEC™, visit www.metzeler.com, or follow along on Facebook and Instagram.

About Metzeler:
Metzeler has manufactured motorcycle tires since 1892 and our history goes hand in hand with the history of the motorcycle. From the use of new materials and the development of innovative tread designs to the introduction of advanced rubber compounds, the German brand is always at the forefront of technical development. Learn more at www.metzeler.com.

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Proposed new regulations for Autocycles in Massachusetts

By General Posts

Proposed new regulations for 3-wheel autocycles

from https://www.bostonherald.com by Boston Herald Wire Services

Proposed regulations of autocycles will be on the schedule when Massachusetts lawmakers hold a virtual public hearing Tuesday.

An autocycle is a three-wheeled motor vehicle that meets federal safety standards for a motorcycle. Unlike motorcycles, however, autocycles typically include a steering wheel, a seat for the driver and occasionally seats for passengers. The driver and passengers are not required to straddle the vehicle like a motorcycle.

One of the bills under consideration would create new safety measures for autocycles including requiring the driver and passengers to wear helmets, requiring autocycle manufacturers to equip the vehicles with safety belts which must be worn by drivers and passengers, and barring children under eight from riding in one.

Anyone who operates an autocycle without wearing a safety helmet or safety belts would face a fine of no less than $25 under the bill.

Massachusetts Lawmakers Weigh New Regulations for Autocycles

from https://www.nbcboston.com by The Associated Press

An autocycle is a motor vehicle with three wheels on the ground that meets federal motor vehicle safety standards for a motorcycle

Proposed regulations of autocycles will be on the schedule when Massachusetts state lawmakers hold a virtual public hearing Tuesday.

An autocycle is a motor vehicle with three wheels on the ground that meets federal motor vehicle safety standards for a motorcycle. Unlike motorcycles, however, autocycles typically include a steering wheel, a seat for the driver and occasionally seats for passenger.

One of the bills under consideration would create new safety measures for autocycles. Those include requiring the driver and passengers wear helmets, requiring autocycle manufacturers to equip the vehicles with safety belts and barring children under eight from riding in an autocycle.

Indian Motorcycle introduces 2022 Lineup

By General Posts

  • Indian Motorcycle introduces 2022 Lineup featuring Updated Technology.
  • New Ride Command Update, Adaptive Headlight for Scout.
  • All-New Accessories for Cruiser, Bagger & Touring.
  • Prices, Paint and Specs announced.

“Rider feedback continues to be at the forefront of what drives refinements and enhancements for our model year offerings, and that is once again the case for 2022. With the help of customer feedback, we aim to consistently enhance and improve the lineup with new technology and wider-ranging accessory options like these for 2022.” – Mike Dougherty, President for Indian Motorcycle

CLICK HERE To See the Full 2022 Indian Motorcycle Lineup Info and Photos.

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MRF Update: Fatality Analysis Reporting System (FARS)

By General Posts

Earlier this month, the U.S. Department of Transportation released an interactive website with data from the Fatality Analysis Reporting System (FARS). FARS, which became operational in 1975, containing data on a census of fatal traffic crashes within the 50 States, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico. To be included in FARS, a crash must involve a motor vehicle traveling on a traffic way customarily open to the public and must result in the death of a vehicle occupant or a nonoccupant within 30 days of the crash.

Fatal crash data for motorcyclists and passengers from the years 2010 to 2019 is included on this website.

Users of the website can sort the information on fatalities by a variety of categories, including:

  • State where the crash took place
  • Crash Characteristics
  • Environmental Characteristics
  • Month of Crash
  • Time of Crash
  • Helmet Usage
  • Alcohol Usage
  • Age and Sex of Victims
  • Weather Conditions
  • Single Vehicle v Multi Vehicle

While this information can be useful in understanding when, why and where crashes are taking place, it’s important to note that this data includes not just traditional motorcycles but also mopeds, scooters, minibikes, and pocket bikes.

The Motorcycle Riders Foundation believes crash avoidance is key component of rider safety. There are zero fatalities in crashes that never happen.

To see the website and view the decade’s long data click here.

About Motorcycle Riders Foundation
The Motorcycle Riders Foundation (MRF) provides leadership at the federal level for states’ motorcyclists’ rights organizations as well as motorcycle clubs and individual riders.

Visit MRF Website at: https://mrf.org/

Rider Review: New Saddlemen Heated Seat

By General Posts

Making Every Ride More Comfortable
Photos and text by Rogue

“I get to ride all over the country and in all kinds of weather. I have made many changes to my 2009 FLHTC over the years and one of them was to install a Saddlemen Heated Seat.”

“I purchased this new Saddlemen seat and installed it on 9/23/2021.”

“Saddlemen has a wide assortment for many motorcycle models”

– Rogue

Click Here to See The Installtion Process and Features of the New Saddlemen Heated Seat.

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Visually Impaired Patriots Experiencing the Road to hold its fifth annual motorcycle ride

By General Posts

VIPER ride founders John Carter (former Marine) and T J Oman (retired Navy Lieutenant Commander) at a previous event

by Erik S. Hanley from https://www.jsonline.com

A motorcycle ride supporting veterans with disabilities is rumbling through Oak Creek later this month

When T.J. Oman, a retired Navy lieutenant commander in Wisconsin, reached out to a fellow veteran in Minnesota about the fifth VIPER ride, he learned the man had been diagnosed with cancer and had months to live.

VIPER, or Visually Impaired Patriots Experiencing the Road, will hold its fifth annual motorcycle ride on Aug. 22 in Oak Creek at the Oelschlaeger-Dallmann American Legion Post 434, 9327 S. Shepard Ave. The Minnesota man has traveled to the Milwaukee area for every past VIPER event, but his sister was keeping this year’s announcement from him because of his diagnosis, Oman, one of the VIPER ride founders, said.

“I messed up her plans because when I didn’t see his application this year, I put together an email and sent it to a batch of people curious about their absence,” Oman said.

Now that he knows the ride is happening, despite his diagnosis, that veteran is coming to ride.

Motorcycle owners, known as “pilots,” are partnered with a veteran called a “tailgunner.” The duos stay together throughout the day’s events. Volunteers are known as the “groundcrew” and they work to give directions, welcome participants, set up food and drinks, clean up and more.

“We’re looking forward to it this year because we missed it last year,” said John Carter, a former Marine and co-founder of the VIPER ride. The 2020 ride was canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Initially only for blind veterans, the ride recently became “the VIPER ride plus+” expanding to allow veterans with any physical disability that prevents them from operating a motorcycle. There is no cost to participants.

“We don’t charge anybody a dime, this is not a fundraiser,” Carter said.

2021 VIPER ride schedule of events
Early in the morning, breakfast will be offered, Carter said. The 50-mile, 90-minute ride through Milwaukee County will kick off around 11 a.m. with two-wheel motorcycles, trikes and motorcycles with sidecars. This will be the first year incorporating a lot of freeway driving with the entire return trip on the interstate, Oman said. After the ride, a big luncheon with live music will be held.

Overall, Carter estimated the event will last from about 8 a.m. to 3:30 or 4 p.m.

All motorcycles large enough to carry a passenger safely are allowed on the ride. Organizers validate every driver’s license for a motorcycle endorsement, get a copy of everyone’s insurance and perform a full safety inspection on every motorcycle.

“It takes a little bit of time but everything we do is all about the VIPER ride and participants,” Oman said. “The reason we do this is the social side of it, just to hang out and talk with these guys. Some of these guys are true heroes.”

The ride will be escorted by police on motorcycles. Oman said the Milwaukee County Sheriff’s Office has been a supporter “from the very beginning.” Additionally, officers from the Milwaukee Police Department and the Wisconsin State Patrol have ridden with the group.

“We couldn’t do it without them,” Carter said.

In the past, the ride lasted substantially longer, Oman said. The first two years the ride went out to Kettle Moraine and East Troy, totaling 111 miles round trip. The second year was a little shorter but still hit triple digits on the odometer. After two years, some veterans said it was a little long, Oman said.

Pilots and Tailgunners enjoying the open road

VIPER rides have nationwide participation
Oman, who served on a nuclear submarine during his tenure in the Navy, said this year was the smallest group of participants since they started with 30 tailgunners and between 50-55 motorcycle pilots. In the past, the event had about 50 tailgunners and as many as 120 motorcycles.

Oman attributed the smaller sign-up numbers to the cancellation of the ride in 2020.

“The out of sight, out of mind mentality affected us,” he said. Oman said many were likely still hesitant to come out and do anything in a group as well given the surging number of delta variant cases.

Registration for the ride itself ended in June, but Carter said everyone is welcome to attend the other festivities.

“We match up pilot and tailgunner and put time and effort into making sure we match the tailgunner and the pilot for size,” Carter said. “We try to get it all finalized in June so we know what we’re doing.”

In the event’s inaugural year, participants from across the country, encompassing 15 different states, attended the ride. Carter said one regular rider travels from Mesa, Arizona every year.

“He takes a train here, travels three to four days, rides that morning, then takes a bus back,” he said.

While many friendships were gained from the event, some early-year participants have been lost.

“I never really foresaw the impact and the long-term effect but a lot of these guys, the pilots and the tailgunners, have become lifelong friends,” Oman said. “They communicate year-round, they maintain contact, it has become a family and as a result of that we’ve lost a few.”

One veteran and big supporter of the event died a few months ago, Oman said. The group is “breaking the rules” and letting his wife and daughter ride with them this year in his honor.

“They’re part of the VIPER family,” Oman said.

The VIPER ride website has a memorial page for participants that have passed to “keep their memory alive as part of the ride,” Oman said.

“Unfortunately, the list keeps growing, but I guess part of living is dying,” he said.

Supporting veterans with disabilities

Oman said he’d been trying to convince Carter to do a motorcycle ride for the blind in the past. Carter, who became the president of the Blinded Veterans Association of Wisconsin, was looking to enhance recruitment for the organization. Out to lunch one day, the two came up with the VIPER ride.

“We mutually agreed it would be a good tool for recruitment,” Oman said, adding he’d been involved with motorcycle rides for the blind in the past.

Carter said one goal for the event was to get blind veterans back out into the fresh air “experiencing something they wouldn’t experience again.”

“Once you lose your sight you don’t want to participate in much, many don’t,” he said.

Carter wasn’t thrilled about the motorcycles, but Oman convinced him to get on a trike with a friend every year for the VIPER ride. For Oman, he doesn’t need convincing.

“I don’t need much of a reason to ride a motorcycle,” he laughed. He still invites Carter out for other rides but with no success.

“Motorcycles scare the liver out of me,” Carter said.