Posts Tagged ‘York’

A really nice commercial that shows off their York, PA factory. I have been to that factory for an open house and it was as clean then as it was in the commercial.

harley Davidson

Harley Davidson Vehicle Operations, York, PA Open House

Debbie and I decided to ride to the Open House at the Harley Davidson factory in York, PA on September 19th.  The factory, which is officially known as the “Harley Davidson Vehicle Operations, York, PA”, has an annual open house and allows the public a chance to see how HD Softails, Trikes, Touring and CVO are built.

We left the house a bit later then we wanted but hit the road mid-morning.  Taking US Route 15 North to Gettysburg (after stopping at Deb’s favorite, Chick-fil-a for breakfast).  The ride on 15 between Frederick, MD and Gettysburg is nice smooth, picturesque trip through Farm County.  But, you need to be alert on this road as there are many, many crossroads that require attention!

When we reached Gettysburg we turned on to US Route 30, also known as The Lincoln Highway, which is the third longest route in the US.  The exit for Route 30 is also the exit for Battlefield Harley Davidson.  I was surprised at the number of motorcycle related small businesses were along the road between Gettysburg and York.  While we did not stop, we were running a bit later then I wanted, I counted at least 5 bike related stores including Battlefield Leather and the Iron Horse Repair Garage.

The worse part of the ride occurred just outside the town of New Oxford. The major crossroad in the town is being repaved and had traffic backed up at least 5 miles.  The GPS showed no way around without a lot of back tracking and Deb would not allow me to skip traffic by riding on the shoulder.  Once we reached the city limits I was able to ride through the back streets and bypass the traffic and construction.  All in all the road worked added another 30 minutes to the ride.

We arrived at the factory a bit before noon. There were all makes and manor of bikes there, even for a Thursday afternoon.  After registration we were issued safety glasses and told to stay inside the yellow lines.

harley davidson

Debbie having lunch outside the factory!

During the walk through we witnessed the birth of a Harley (the VIN stamped onto the frame), fenders and tanks stamped from sheet metal, fairings and saddlebags attached, and bikes tested then loaded into trucks.

We talked with a few of the workers that were assigned to keep us on the path and out of the way of the robots moving the bikes and parts along the assembly line.  They all like working at the plant and enjoyed having us walk through and see what they do to make the bikes.

The walk though ends with you in the gift shop, of course.  There were many “Vehicle Operations” labeled items including the ubiquitous t-shirts.  Because this was an open house the factory had invited several local dealers to “setup shop” in the parking lot along with some food vendors and the “Globe of Death”!  In a different part of the factory campus there were demo rides of the new 2014 bikes as well as the HOG (Harley Owners Group) Pin Stop.

All in all we had a great day (with the exception of the town of New Oxford), so much so that we are considering going back for the “Steel Toe Tour”.

I recorded this at the Harley Davidson Vehicle Operations, York, PA Open House!

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There are a couple of bike events taking place in York this month.

First is the Harley Davidson York Vehicle Operations Open House the 19th-21st.  The York plant assembles the Softail, Touring, CVO and Trike motorcycles and the open house allow you to conduct a self-escorted tour of the operations.  You can see the bikes being birthed (the VIN # applied to the frame) to rolling out the door.  The plant open house is different from the Steel Toe Tour (which I have not done) in that there is no charge, it is unescorted and you do not get the swag.

I visited the open house two years ago and it was a cool event.  In addition to the walk through of the plant there were demo bikes available to ride and a bunch of the nearby dealerships had setup merchandise tents on the plant’s grounds.  I am considering going again this year. The open house has been a “Pin Stop” for HOG members in the past.

The other event is the White Rose Thunder Motorcycle Event. The event has bike shows, vendors, stunt teams, motorcycle racing, a bike night, concerts, swap meet and many other activities.  I have never attended this event, if you are interested take a look at the website.