Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

upshift

Hitting Neutral:  Both the US, Europe as well as many other countries have their own standards on motorcycle helmet safety. This year the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UN ECE) will issue new regulations on the testing of motorcycle helmets.

This will be the sixth version of the regulation and will go into effect 3 years after the regulations are issued. At that point it will become illegal to sell helmets that are not in compliance with the new version.

So just what does the new regulations cover?  (From the Federation of European Motorcyclists’ Associations website)

Modular helmets – Helmets equipped with a movable or detachable protective lower face cover, will be tested with or without chin guard in position.

Sun shields – Sun shields cannot restrain or prevent the movement of the visor. On opening the visor, the sun shield can pivot in the working position. By means of a simple movement the sun shield must be able to be moved separately from the visor. Helmets placed on the market with a sun shield shall be tested with the sun shield in working position.

Reflective stickers – In order to comply with national requirements, the helmet may be required to have reflective materials. These materials can be delivered with the helmet, with proper instructions on where and how to apply them on the helmet.

Accessories – Helmets placed on the market with accessories shall be examined to make sure the equipment has no adverse effect and that the helmet and/or visor still comply with the requirements. Testing will be done with and without the accessory and its support with attention to energy absorption, sharp edges and field of vision. You are not allowed to modify the helmet from its original specification as manufactured. Accessories must be fitted in accordance with the helmet manufacturer’s instructions. Only accessories tested during the type approval procedure of the helmet keep the type approval valid.

High speed particle test for visors – To make sure visors don’t shatter when hit by something hard during your ride, they shall be tested with a steel ball at 60 m/s. The visor should not fracture or deform, and the visor housing should not separate into two or more pieces, or no longer be capable of holding the visor in position.

Brain injury by rotation – An impact test method of measuring rotational acceleration will be introduced, to test the impact on the brain when the helmet is twisted during an accident. To test this, the helmet will be allowed to fall, under specified angles and with a specified speed on to a rigidly mounted anvil.

My Take: As I am normally inclined, I am not a fan of regulations as too often it is a bureaucrat’s way of job justification that only adds to the expense of a product.  However, with the execution of one area, I do not see a problem with this update to the rules.

The problem I have is with the “Accessories” section.  I my mind I see accessory as anything placed on the helmet that was not sold by the manufacturer as part of the helmet.  I have a problem with that as it will be used as a cudgel against motorcyclists.

In Australia there is already a similar rule regarding helmet accessories.  Motorcycle riders are often pulled over and ticketed for have accessories on their helmet, click here for an example from “MotorBike Writer”. The primary culprit seems to be action cameras and Bluetooth communications modules. This new rule will infringe on the rider’s documentation and even their job.

 

Ride on, Ride Safe

safety

May is Motorcycle Safety Awareness month. It is important to get the word out to your non-riding friends and family!

I don’t own any of these photos about motorcycle safety but I have gathered them from across the internet. I think “Fair Use” is in full operation in regards to their use.
So copy and paste these motorcycle safety pictures &, memes. Post them up to all your favorite sites. Point them out to non-riders, we already get it!
Ride safe.

 

recall

Be aware that this motorcycle recall list is for the United States, there is no way I could cover the entire world. But in the world of global manufacturing, if a motorcycle is being recalled in one country there is a good chance it is under recall in others. Also, this should not be considered a definitive list, check for yourself if you have any questions.

If you are US based use the NHTSA website http://www.safercar.gov. Enter your VIN number to see if your motorcycle is affected by the recall.

If you are based outside the USA, use the appropriate website to locate recalls that may impact you.

*****

Manufacturer Yamaha Motor Corporation, USA

Components ENGINE

Summary

Yamaha Motor Corporation, USA (Yamaha) is recalling certain XV250 motorcycles. An oil passageway in the engine side cover may not be properly manufactured, possibly blocking lubricating oil to the engine.

Remedy

Yamaha will notify owners, and dealers will inspect and replace of the engine side cover, free of charge. The recall is expected to begin April 17, 2020. Owners may contact Yamaha customer service at 1-800-962-7926. Yamaha’s number for this recall is 990136.

*****

Manufacturer KTM North America, Inc.

Components SERVICE BRAKES, HYDRAULIC

Summary

KTM North America, Inc. (KTM) is recalling certain 2019-2020 790 Adventure and 790 Adventure R motorcycles. The rear brake hose may overheat, causing the rear brake system to fail.

Remedy

KTM will notify owners, and dealers will install a new rear brake line, free of charge. The recall is expected to begin June 1, 2020. Owners may contact KTM customer service at 1-888-985-6090. KTM’s number for this recall is TB2011.

*****

Manufacturer Indian Motorcycle Company

Components ENGINE

Summary

Indian Motorcycle Company (Indian) is recalling certain 2020 Challenger motorcycles. The engine output shaft bearing may not have been sufficiently lubricated during assembly, possibly resulting in bearing failure at very low mileage.

Remedy

Indian will notify owners, and dealers will lubricate the output shaft bearings on motorcycles with less than 50 miles on the odometer, free of charge. Motorcycles with greater than 50 miles will not require a repair, and can either be inspected by a dealer, or the owner can self-report the odometer reading directly to Indian. The recall is expected to begin in April 2020. Owners may contact Indian customer service at 1-877-204-3697. Indian’s number for this recall is I-20-02. Note: Owners with an odometer reading of less than 50 miles are advised to not operate their motorcycle until it is repaired.

 

 

 

garage

As long as there has been machinery, there has been mechanical problems, as long as there has been mechanical problems there has been a man or lady that has the skills to repair it.  These highly skilled people either spent most of their young lives as an apprentice or studying at a college to ultimately become the person who repairs your motorcycle, the mechanic.
Photo provided by Mark JamesHistorically, if we have had problems with our motorcycles our first stop would be to reach for the yellow pages and call the nearest affordable garage or bike repair shop. Fortunately for the modern day motorcycle enthusiast things have have changed for the better since the arrival of the internet, the motorcycle owner of today can simply search the internet for a solution to their problem, and within a minutes there is a good chance the owner will find someone who has had the same issue, and possibility a solution, this information may come in the form of a blog, a forum thread, Facebook groups, Reddit posts or even a YouTube videos.
Although information alone is no substitute for good old fashioned experience, there is allot to be said for “the have go hero’s” amongst us, at the end of the day there is a sense of pride and achievement when we repair our own things, this is not to mention the money we can save be doing it ourselves.
Despite the wealth of mechanical information on the internet there can be no betterPhoto provided by Mark James source of information than a official workshop manual, these manuals are developed and written by the manufactures of the motorcycles, so its fair to say the information within the pages of these documents is gold.
One of the best investments any motorcyclist can have is an automotive eManual, these very detailed step by step documents can hold the hand of the most inexperienced arm chair mechanic, and walk them through the most complex of tasks. Unlike their hard-copy cousins, these eManuals are easier to access and are more of a sustainable option.
One of the largest databases of motorcycle eManuals on the internet is located in the UK, RepairBooks.co.uk is a family run business and was established in 1999, with a growing inventory of over 12,000 titles. Any manual that is not listed on their database can be sourced within a short period of time.

Mark James is an car and motorcycle mechanic with over 25 years in the automotive industry. Head of department at Nissan Sunderland, England for 10 years.

motorcycle-helmet-after-accident

April is Motorcycle Helmet Safety month and the supposed start of the riding season in the Northern Hemisphere. So, if your riding season is just beginning or coming to an end you should check your helmet for any issues that could risk your safety.

What do you look for when performing a safety check on your motorcycle helmet? Different manufactures state similar and different things to check, please referrer to your helmets makers directions for the best information.

However, there are some generic checks you can do that will cover many areas to make sure your helmet is still safe. Here are the a few things you need to look for:

1) Is the shell all in one piece? No cracks or splits?

2) Are the straps and connectors in good shape, no adverse wear or tear?h7

3) The internal padding is connected and stays in place?

4) Remove the padding and check the foam.  Is it dented or have cracks?

5) While looking at the foam, most companies place a sticker printed with the helmet’s birthday. Is it over 5 years old?

6) Does the rest of the internals look in good operating condition?

7) Check the visor for damage that might obscure your vision, can you see clearly?

8) Are the screws or other visor attachments tight?

9) Make sure that insects/creatures are not living in your helmet, see the photos below!

Checklist item 5 is the 5-year rule.  Most manufactures recommend that after 5 years you replace your helmet.  While the cynical among us will cite the “more money” theory of why they want it replaced there is evidence that the foam lining (the part that does most of the work in a crash) does deteriorate over time. It is your head, so it is your decision to replace or not if everything looks good.

For more you can check out HelmetCheck.org.

 

IMG_20200328_112311242

Soooo, bored at home and looking at motorcycle parts. Lo and behold I find a part I did not know I needed, the Kuryakyn Tour-Pak Chrome Lid Grip! Of course, I ordered it right then and there.  Is there a cure for the “Chromavirus”?

IMG_20200328_112610604I must state that I had thought about why there was no “handle” to raise the lid and that it was kind of weird that you had to grab the lip of the lid to push it open. But when I read Kuryakyn’s part description they hooked me Kuryakyn Tour-Pak lid grips blend in perfectly, while providing ideal leverage to easily unlatch and open the lid in one fluent motion.”

It was not long before it arrived, and it was time to install. Opening the package and reading the instructions it was going to be an easy install.

Four screws, remove old OEM part, put new part on with the same four screws. Easy peasy right. Well yeah, until you notice that the screw heads are stripped.

IMG_20200328_112934358LOL, dummy the screw heads are on the inside of the lid behind the rubber weather seal. Out they came with a Torx T20 screwdriver and off comes the old part. I cleaned the area, surprising how much road grime gets into small spots, and then slipped the new Kuryakyn Lid Grip on and replaced the screws.

The part looks and fits like as if the Tour Pak was sent from the factory that way, and maybe it should have been. I like it, as of this date it is on sale (both chrome and black) for $22 US.  Easy to install and helpful I give it 5 Stars.

 

upshift downshift

 

NBCSCDownshift: MOTOGP and World Superbike now on NBCSC – NBC now has the multi-year rights to both MOTOGP and World Superbike motorcycle racing in the US market. I found out about this when I tried to DVR World Superbike this past weekend.

NBCSC will open their MOTOGP coverage with the race in Qatar (not anymore) the rest will air either on NBC or NBCSC either live or tape delay. OR you can watch live on their streaming service, where it appears that MOTO2 and MOTO3 will only be available.

World Superbike is getting 6 races televised but it appears that only 2 will air live, based on their timing.

My Take: As much as BEIN Sports was maligned for the numbers of households it was in, at least they televised all the races! So, based on this how do I politely say NBCSC AND DORNA YOU SUCK? NBC how much did you pay to not show the races?

OH, but I can buy your NBC steaming packages? Why would I give you that money when I can pay MOTOGP and World Superbike directly, for the same thing?
DORNA you really don’t want motorcycle racing to succeed in the USA do you?
NBCSC is doing a poor job with Supercross (it is listed as motocross for DVR purposes) why would I think it would do any better with the other forms of motorcycle racing?

*****

motogpNeutral: MOTOGP in Qatar & Thailand Canceled – The Corona Virus has forced a prudent action of cancelling the first two races of the 2020 MOTOGP season in both. There was some question regarding MOTO2 and MOTO3 classes as they were already in Qatar preparing for the race. But that question has been answered, they are racing in Qatar.

The second race, Thailand was rescheduled for October.

Additionally, DORNA is considering hold races with out the fans. Not sure how that would work out for the tracks?  My understanding is that they make most of their money on those race weekends from the fans.  Selling 100,000 hot dogs puts the money in their pocket.

My Take: It was the prudent thing to do. For all you Marc Marquez haters, yes, it is a conspiracy to allow him to get healthy! LOL

This is a fast changing situation…I going to try and keep up!

recall

Be aware that this motorcycle recall list is for the United States, there is no way I could cover the entire world. But in the world of global manufacturing, if a motorcycle is being recalled in one country there is a good chance it is under recall in others. Also, this should not be considered a definitive list, check for yourself if you have any questions.

If you are US based use the NHTSA website http://www.safercar.gov. Enter your VIN number to see if your motorcycle is affected by the recall.

If you are based in outside the USA use the appropriate website to locate recalls that may impact you.

***** 

Manufacturer: Indian Motorcycle Company

SUMMARY: Indian Motorcycle Company (Indian) is recalling certain 2019 Chieftain, Vintage, Roadmaster, Dark Horse, Springfield, and FTR1200 motorcycles. A 10A circuit breaker may be defective, tripping unexpectedly and causing a sudden loss of power and an engine stall.

CONSEQUENCE: An engine stall increases the risk of a crash.

REMEDY: Indian will notify owners and provide a new 10A circuit breaker and installation instructions. Owners may choose to have the part installed at a dealership, free of charge. The recall is expected to begin January 2, 2020. Owners may contact Indian customer service at 1-877-204-3697. Indian’s number for this recall is I-19-05.

NOTES: Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.

*****

Manufacturer: Polaris Inc.

SUMMARY: Polaris Industries, Inc. (Polaris) is recalling certain 2019 Slingshot, Slingshot SL, Slingshot SLR, and Slingshot GT motorcycles. A 10A circuit breaker may be defective, tripping unexpectedly and causing a sudden loss of power and an engine stall.

CONSEQUENCE: An engine stall increases the risk of a crash.

REMEDY: Polaris will notify owners and provide a new 10A circuit breaker and installation instructions. Owners may choose to have the part installed at a dealership, free of charge. The recall is expected to begin January 2, 2020. Owners may contact Polaris customer service at 1-855-863-2284. Polaris’ number for this recall is T-19-02.

NOTES: Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.

*****

Manufacturer: Piaggio Group Americas. Inc. (Moto Guzzi)

SUMMARY: Piaggio Group Americas. Inc. (Piaggio) is recalling certain 2020 Moto Guzzi V 85 TT motorcycles. The footrest mounting pin retaining clip may break, allowing the pin to disconnect and the footrest to fall off the motorcycle.

CONSEQUENCE: A footrest that falls off while the motorcycle is in motion may become a road hazard, increasing the risk of a crash.

REMEDY: Piaggio will notify owners, and dealers will inspect the retaining rings on all four footrests. If any of the clips are found to be defective, the dealer will replace the retaining clips on all four footrest pins, free of charge. The recall is expected to begin December 26, 2019. Owners may contact Piaggio customer service at 1-212-380-4433. Piaggio’s number for this recall is PGJZZQ1905.

NOTES: Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.

*****

Manufacturer: Piaggio Group Americas. Inc. (Moto Guzzi)

SUMMARY: Piaggio Group Americas. Inc. (Piaggio) is recalling certain 2020 Moto Guzzi V 85 TT motorcycles. The final drive output seal may leak oil onto the rear tire.

CONSEQUENCE: An oil leak onto the rear tire may cause a loss of vehicle control, increasing the risk of a crash.

REMEDY: Piaggio will notify owners, and dealers will inspect the final drive transmission box for an oil leak and install an extra seal. If an oil leak is found, both seals and the gasket will be replaced. These repairs will be performed free of charge. The recall is expected to begin December 26, 2019. Owners may contact Piaggio customer service at 1-212-380-4433. Piaggio’s number for this recall is PGJZZQ1904.

NOTES: Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.

*****

Manufacturer: Harley-Davidson Motor Company

SUMMARY: Harley-Davidson Motor Company (Harley-Davidson) is recalling certain 2019-2020 FLHTCUTG, and FLRT Trike motorcycles. The Trike Traction Control System software may respond incorrectly to a faulty rear wheel speed signal by activating one of the rear brakes.

CONSEQUENCE: Unintended activation of one rear brake could lead to an unexpected change in vehicle direction which may increase the risk of a crash.

REMEDY: Harley-Davidson has notified owners, and dealers will update the traction control system software, free of charge. The recall began December 2, 2019. Owners may contact Harley-Davidson customer service at 1-800-258-2464. Harley-Davidson’s number for this recall is 0175.

NOTES: Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.

*****

Manufacturer: Arcimoto Inc

SUMMARY: Arcimoto Inc (Arcimoto) is recalling certain 2019 FUV motorcycles. A component of the display board may short circuit causing the communication and display circuit boards to shutdown.

CONSEQUENCE: If the communication or display board shuts down, the battery may shutdown causing a sudden loss of power and increasing the risk of a crash.

REMEDY: Arcimoto will notify owners, and dealers will trim the pins of the 5V regulator, and apply a layer of protective tape, free of charge. The manufacturer has not yet provided a notification schedule. Owners may contact Arcimoto customer service at 1-541-683-6293.

NOTES: Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to http://www.safercar.gov.

ob 2

A feature length documentary released in 2019 covering the “contemporary motorcycle culture”. The film attempts, and I think accomplishes, to show how individualism is embedded into our culture. “This is not a film about motorcycles, its about motorcycle people.”

This was a very ambitious undertaking. According to their website they interviewed nearly 300 custom motorcycle builders, riders, racers, artists, etc. from the US, Japan, Europe, Australia, and Africa. They also talked with representatives from Harley Davidson, BMW, Yamaha, Ducati and Royal Enfield. ON TOP of all that how about attending events at the Bike Shed in London and Paris, The Trip Out, The Brooklyn Invitational, The Distinguished Gentleman’s Ride, Dirt Quake, Snow Quake, Mama Tried, and Mooneyes among many others.

So, with all that, is this motorcycle film any good, is it worth your time? Yes and yes. Theob 1 only negative was that they had so much content that some will think it is a bit too long at 2 hours. Now don’t get me wrong, it was a lot of fun to watch and it will be on my winter 2020 motorcycle movie list! I like the interviews and discussion around why people are doing the things they are doing. I really loved seeing myself or someone I know in nearly every person they talked with.

I do have one additional negative; they went back to one guy multiple times who did nothing but lambast people who “customize” via bolt on and manufactures who sell limited addition motorcycle. That guy really pissed me off. Not all of us are a wiz welders and have hundreds of hours to create our personal masterpieces.

I am giving this film 5 stars. I know some will think that this is a bit long, but I enjoyed seeing that motorcycle people, around the world, are pretty much the same. The “Oil in the Blood” documentary is available on Apple, Google, Amazon and other streaming services.

5 star

motoamerica-logoRacing

Over the last few years MotoAmerica motorcycle racing has been improving bit by bit, in the racing arena.

That was true until this season when the 2019 racing, in almost every class, became WOW.

In the superbike series there were multiple winners all though the season, on any given

bobby Fong

@bobbyfong50

week any one of six riders could end up on the top step.

Both the superbike (Cameron Beaubier) and sport bike (Bobby Fong) championship went down to the last race weekend. AND emerging champions like Alex Dumas, Andrew Lee

and Rocco Landers only add to the level of talent in MotoAmerica. As far as the racing goes…

MotoAmerica had the best racing in the world in 2019!!!! No doubt, hands down, the best racing in the world!

TV coverage

It was not only in racing that MotoAmerica improved.

The premier American motorcycle racing series moved from BEIN Sports to Fox Sports 2 tripling the number of homes that could see the races. Fox Sports 2 showed all the superbike races live or same day, with an encore showing later in the week for 45 hours of coverage. As for the other races like the Liqui Moly Twins Cup, many folks have been critical of the lack of coverage on TV. I say “dude” it is a building process, geez!!ma nbc

AND if that was not enough MotoAmerica had an hour long spot each week with NBC Sports Network. “Inside MotoAmerica” was a show that highlighted the races and provided interviews and features from the previous week’s races. Each show was repeated once for 22 hours of motorcycle racing coverage. I though “Inside MotoAmerica” was well produced.

Steaming

If you could not get Fox Sports 2 or you wanted to watch all the race action in every class, then you could have bought into MotoAmerica Live+. As part of The DawgHousemotoamerica live Motorcycle Radio show we have been calling for this for a few years, along with dumping BEIN. I know they have been listening to our show as Wayne Rainy and Chuck Askland stopped by and talked with us while we covered the races at VIR and Pittsburgh. Do we take credit for the steaming… but of course!!! ILMAO

Silly season

The MotoAmerica schedule for next year is set, Utah and Sonoma are out and “The Ridge” and Indianapolis are in for 2020. Looks like The DawgHouse Motorcycle Radio might get to go to 3 races next year (yes, we could go to NJ, but no way we are driving there from Virginia…Indy might be longer but so much easier)!

Is fan favorite JD Beach going to return next year, does not sound like he is. While there has been no official notice, the race announcers have stated, on live TV, that he is not returning. So, I assume we will get to see him full time riding American Flat Track.

Garrett Gerloff has rumors that he will be racing in World Super Bike next year. I hope he lands a contending ride as we really need a MotoAmerica alum to do well to attract more attention to the series.

Looks like factory Yamaha is pulling out of the series sponsorship. Sad but Yamaha is having a rough time financially in the US. They even recently moved their HQ from California to Georgia to save money.

Wrapping it up

I really enjoyed MotoAmerica’s 2019 motorcycle racing season. Between seeing racing live at the track, on Fox Sports, NBCSN and the streaming package I could not have asked for much more. All I have to say is things are looking up for motorcycle racing in the US.

I would like to give a special thanks to the folks over at Liqui Moly US for providing The DawgHouse Motorcycle Radio tickets to give away to fans of both our show and MotoAmerica!