Nuts & Bolts

Simple How-Tos, Maintenance, Repairs, & Upgrades

Night Rider

There is a group of motorcyclists in our area, known as the Night Riders, who enjoy carving up the country roads outside of town after sunset. I hear them many warm, spring-summer evenings, their sport bikes howling through the dark, engines revving, clicking up and down through the gears as they slice their way along the curvy blacktop that snakes around our north Georgia home. Sometimes I just stand outside and listen, trying to count how many there are, guessing which roads they are running- and occasionally, wishing I were riding with them.

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Crash Course

I knew something was wrong. I remounted and ascended the grade slowly. With its rock face to the left and sheer drop to the right, running wide here meant endless airtime to consider what went wrong, get your affairs in order and picture your kids’ faces before gravity pulls you toward your inevitable handshake with the basalt rocks that lie below, waiting to mangle rider and bike. A couple of minutes into my climb I found Corey’s wreck. He had run wide.

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Listen Up

Podcasts are popular because they captivate listeners without the major expense of a video production. So, content creators have sought podcasts as a way to engage with an audience at an affordable rate. And the strategy is clearly working. Podcasts have been a huge hit, as people can listen to them on a commute, while they work, during a workout, etc. Before the pandemic hit, I used to listen to podcasts daily while I sat in traffic to and from work. I won’t lie, I don’t miss the commute or the traffic, as I’m currently working from home, but I do miss the chance to listen to the occasional podcast. I have since started listening to them during my regular jogs, as a change of pace from the steady stream of hair bands I typically listen to. It was during these jogs that I encountered the wave of new motorcycle-themed podcasts. I’ve sampled as many as I can and wanted to take this opportunity to share my findings with our readers.

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Bar Swapping

So what’s with all these baggers, tourers and all around bad-@$$ bikes with tall handlebars (AKA) “Apes”? Why would anyone want any other bar (height or width) on a bike other than the stock bar? Well, for me it’s about leverage and making the bike “fit” me better. I’m on my second Harley touring bagger (a Road Glide) and I couldn’t wait to put some 12” bars on it. After I bought a Street Glide in 2017 a family member asked me what I was going to do to make it my own. I wasn’t sure what he meant. A few months later when riding with a group of buddies I noticed one of the guys had installed 12” KST Kustom bars on his Road Glide and I had to ask, “So what’s the big deal – is this just so you can look cool or like a ‘Real’ biker?” My buddy (an engineer by trade) didn’t punch me in the nose for my wise-cracking question, but rather came back with a more technical, and I must say legitimate, response.

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The Shark And The Bat

In the world of American made touring bikes, the battle for fairing dominance often comes down to personal taste (look and feel) over performance. I must admit, when initially shopping for my first bagger I was drawn to the look of the batwing fairing on the Harley Davidson Street Glide. The idea of cruising behind a set of 12” bars with my feet up on highway pegs just felt right in my mind. So in September 2017, I made that dream a reality and picked up a 2014 Street Glide.

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