Sunday, October 25, 2009

Adam J. Chitjian
8/30/1968 - 10/25/2007
Forever in our hearts!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

The State of Harley-Davidson

A lot of discussion this week in the motorcycle community has centered around the shuttering of Buell. Buell, a subsidiary of HD, has produced some of the most innovative designs around the Sportster type engine. While the debate continues here are two links that provide insight into the problem.

I think this view that HD has lost its way is shared by a lot of riders. Personally, I think it's a microcosm of what is affecting the United States today.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Wall of Death!!!!

The best 5 bucks I've ever spent. Saw this at Delmarva bike week this year. Enjoy!

The Grand Finale!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

So, who’s really being noisy???

The debate about motorcycles and noise they generate has been long existent. Now, I believe, the issue around noise is coming to a head. I recently received an email about the AMA’s proposed legislature regarding noise from all combustion engines. The AMA’s actions are explained by Imre Szauter, AMA government affairs manager;

"Many cities and other jurisdictions already have excessive sound laws on the books, but when they get citizen complaints about loud motorcycles, they sometimes decide to single out the riding public with unfair or overly restrictive ordinances and laws," said Imre Szauter, AMA government affairs manager. "We believe that motorcycles shouldn't be singled out, but should be regulated as part of a comprehensive sound management policy that also addresses cars, trucks, leaf blowers, generators and other sources of excessive sound."

The J2825 standard, issued by the SAE in May, is based on a comprehensive study of a wide variety of on-highway motorcycles. It establishes instrumentation, test site, test conditions, procedures, measurements and sound level limits.

"Too many times, jurisdictions responding to citizen complaints about excessive motorcycle sound create laws that simply don't work in the real world," Szauter said. "They either set an unreasonable decibel limit, leave it up to a police officer to subjectively decide whether a bike is too noisy, or come up with another plan that is arbitrary or unworkable. Our model legislation is objective, workable and fair."[1]

What is the J2825 SAE standard? Well, the article said the standard goes like this, “Under the SAE J2825 standard, decibel limits range from 92 dBA at idle for all motorcycles, to up to 100 dBA at certain RPMs for various motorcycles, depending on the type of engine.”[2] Personally I have Vance and Hines Straightshot slip-on mufflers on my sporty. They produce a lot of “sound,” but fall well within Pennsylvania’s limits. These limits are found in the vehicle code, “Pennsylvania Administrative Code Title 67, Part I, Subpart A, Article VII, Chapter 157, Subchapter B, Section 157.11, Paragraph a: Max A-weighted sound levels as measured at 50 feet: 84dBA at 35 mph or less; 88dBA above 35mph.”[3]

So, does anyone really know how the two measure up? Will the AMA’s suggestion be adopted? I believe this issue lies in the upswing in motorcycle riders during the past couple of decades. I do believe that some exhausts (straight pipes) do emit an excessive amount of noise, and the more recent cadre of riders think it’s their right to do so. I believe that a certain amount of loudness does help with being visible to others, but there is a limit. Most of the take home choppers (bar bikes) have ridiculous noise issues, and their riders have “look at me, look at me!” issues which complicate matters. I also believe that those who complain are a minority of folks who have nothing better to do, but since they complain to the right people the complaints are acted on. With that said, if you do ride it’s a good idea to join either ABATE, my choice, or the AMA. These groups provide a collective voice where it matters most. I guess you can say I’m noisy whether on or off my motorcycle.

Friday, September 11, 2009

A day of rememberance...

Let us all take some time out today to remember what happened 8 years ago.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

My Summer Vacation @ Disney

I was in the Tragic (Euro) Kingdom last week and I'm feeling a little guilty right now. The reason I say Tragic (Euro) Kingdom is most of Western Europe was there with us. I thought Europeans hated us culturally deprived Americans with our McDonalds and NASCAR. I guess with Disney all bets are off. I mean there were French people…lots of French people. Britain, Germany, and some Slavic nations too were in the house of mouse. Not that I mind foreigners, it’s just ironic they would come all this way to pay homage to the Mecca of Capitalism for which we are hated! But let’s face it; Disney World is perfect for Western Europeans because it’s so Hegelian it’s ridiculous.

I mean look at EPCOT and it is plain to see. All the countries represented are European except for Japan (we love their technology), China (Chinese food and everything is made there, duh!), and Mexico (where else could you get Margaritas and salsa). Hell, Canada is represented…they’re either French or British! Some diversity! Well, Africa does have its own park practically. Disney’s Animal Kingdom has Africa. Here the buildings are crumbling with frayed electrical wires running everywhere. The atmosphere was pretty realistic to the state of things in Africa today. All was needed were some toddlers with AK-47’s to complete the picture. Dire as it was at least it wasn’t portrayed like in the Magic Kingdom itself with the drums and cannibalistic savages. Let’s face it Disney loved the Victorian era where white was right, the West was Wild, and the African continent was dark as ever. I don’t know where the Jews fit in, because they are totally non-existent. Now with that rant aside let’s start another one.

Mmmmm, when in India sample the authentic fare!
My love for Disney begins with the all encompassing access card. If my tinfoil hat wasn’t being repaired I would swear that WDW was the testing ground for the national ID. Once issued, this card gives you access to food, entrance to all the parks, and is linked to your credit card so you buy anything with it as well. Damn, it even has biometrics linked to it. When entering any of the parks you need to submit a fingerprint. Now YOU are attached to this card and only YOU can use it. To prove it I tried using my index finger on my left hand one day and was rejected. I had to use the same finger on my right hand (GASP!).

That aside, I enjoyed myself thoroughly. The staff was friendly. Every one of the 60,000 employees was pleasant, no kidding. It was paradise. I want to move there and claim asylum. I mean it! While I was scrubbing dishes today I thought to myself, “I wish I was at Disney.” I feel like I have been sprung from some reeducation camp. The world is not supposed to be like this. It is supposed to be like Disney World! We have already booked next summer’s vacation there (sigh). Yipeee!!!!!!