Motorcycles in the Movies

The movies make it look so easy – like using a motorcycle to cross between two rooftops only using a short ramp, or riding so low to the ground that you have no idea how the driver doesn’t fall off. It’s all part of movie magic, and these stunt actors are trained to perform these dangerous tasks, often with the help of special effects. Trying them at home would probably mean a trip to the hospital for anyone who doesn’t know what they’re doing, but if you’re in the mood for a great story and some cool motorcycle tricks, here’s four movies for you that might just do the trick:

 

Thunderball (1965)

James Bond drives a lot of cool cars. Fact. He also drives a lot of cool bikes – and so do the villains. The beautiful SPECTRE assassin Fiona Volpe steals the show with her motorcycle because not only does her motorcycle exude confidence, but it can also launch missiles. The bike in question? BSA Lightning A65-L. For a more modern James Bond, there’s also Quantum of Solace (2008), featuring Daniel Craig zipping around on a modified Montesa Cota 4RT.

 

Salt (2010)

Angelina Jolie as a CIA officer-turned-fugitive? Awesome. Angelina Jolie’s character riding a motorcycle in a high-speed chase scene? Also awesome. Angelina Jolie doing her own stunts, including the ones on the motorcycle? That’s more than enough right there, but wait – Triumph even developed a new bike specifically for this movie. They took their Street Triple and came up with the Street Triple R, even more agile and intuitive than its predecessor.

 

Top Gun (1986)

Anyone who grew up in the 1980s knows Top Gun, with Maverick (played by Tom Cruise) and his 1985 Kawasaki GPZ 900 R. From his skills on his bike to his leather jacket to his luck with the ladies, everyone wanted to be Maverick, and who could blame them? If you’re feeling nostalgic, Top Gun is a great movie night choice.

 

Ultraviolet (2006)

While Ultraviolet isn’t known for its great or even cohesive storyline, it’s really the bike you want to be watching for, anyway. With Milla Jovovich cruising through an antigravity chase scene on her 2001 BMW R1150R, the motorcycle truly steals the show and almost makes up for the fact that the rest of the movie makes little sense. Maybe just catch this scene on YouTube, actually, but whatever you do – check out the antigravity chase scene, and sit back and marvel at how the beautiful bike cruises through the air.

 

2018 Harley Davidson Bikes to Consider

The Harley-Davidson brand name is synonymous with motorcycles. They’ve developed an image over the decades of being an iconic and powerful all-American motorcycle that is instantly recognizable and widely respected.

For these reasons and many others, Harley-Davidson has been the kind of bike that enthusiasts have aspired to, a sign that they’ve really made it. Now, in 2018, Harley is shaking things up a little with some of their newest offerings, while still retaining that special something that keeps people coming back for more.

Here are a few of the top new Harleys this year:

Street Motorcycles

While not much has changed on the three Street models this year, they remain extremely popular as Harley’s entry-level line. Designed to be new-rider friendly, with a lower seat and wide handlebars, the Street 500, Street 750 and Street Rod are built to maneuver through busy city streets.

Sportsters

Another favorite of Harley enthusiasts, this line didn’t change much from 2017 to 2018, either. New black and chrome finishes and a custom race stripe on the 1200 were the only significant alterations made to these five bikes.

Softails

This line of nine new Softail models are where the company has rolled out the first major changes of the year. With an aim to improve comfort and performance across the line, Harley has blended the Dyna and Softail models to retain the hard look of a Dyna with the faster, easier ride of a Softail.

Touring Motorcycles

While the base design elements of these ten big bikes remain unchanged, there are bits and pieces of several models that have received an updated look for the new year. This line continues to be Harley’s iconic long-haul brand, with the individual bikes built for extended trips on the road, but with new blackout styling, extended luggage racks, more built-in comfort and upgraded infotainment systems on several models, the Touring line just keeps getting better with age.

CVO

These bikes are Harley’s answer to custom houses. The line changes from year to year, but always uses the best design features, parts and styling to give riders the very best factory-installed experience possible.

Trikes

This line is mostly unchanged for the new year, aside from the introduction of the the Tri Glide Ultra’s 115th Anniversary edition. Still focused on long-distance hauling and built for two people, these trikes offer plenty of storage and all of the amenities you’d expect to find on a Harley, just with three wheels.

Motorcycle Must-Haves: Royal Enfields Recap of Newly Opened Factory

Graham Zahoruiko Motorcycle News

Having been around for decades, a century even, Royal Enfields is continuing to grow in demand. The company first started in 1890 when they received their license for the brand name “Royal Enfields”. They made their first motorcycle in 1901 but also sold other items such as lawnmowers, bicycles, and more. Having been in production for so long, this company is known as the oldest motorcycle brand that has continuously made and sold motorcycles.

Since then, this small motorcycle company has grown the become a global leader in selling mid-sized motorcycles.This brand has been around for a long time, but just so happens to be at a new beginning. Royal Enfields announced it’s opening of a third manufacturing facility, at Vallam Vadagal based in India.

In 1949, Royal Enfields opened doors to its partnership in India, selling the mid-sized motorcycles just after the war. India’s government was in search of motorcycles fit for policemen to use. Royal Enfields’ bike, the “Bullet 350” (they now sell the Bullet 500 efi, also) was chosen for the job, with India’s government placing an enormous order of 800 bikes during that time. Since then, it’s clear that Royal Enfields’ popularity has continued to rise.

Royal Enfields is known for their style that combines a classic bike with a modern look, making the design timeless. Through this distinct design, Royal Enfields has grown in popularity, increasing sales in India 50% every year for the past 5 years. In order to keep up with such demand, the company had to open a new manufacturing facility. It is with confidence that they continue to sell their unique models.

This company sells multiple models such as: the Bullet, Thunderbird, and Classic. Additionally, they sell the Cafe Racer – continental gt. This product line is lined up for India, but can vary depending upon the country. Today, Royal Enfields are sold in the following countries: USA, UK, India, various countries throughout Europe, Latin America and both the Middle East and South East Asia.

On top of being such a unique motorcycle company, they go beyond just manufacturing and selling bikes. This company organizes motorcycle rides for both members and non-members, giving ample opportunity for a leisurely trip or even an adventure.

With such growth seen over the last 5 years, it’s no surprise that this company is expanding. If it’s a successful facility, the question remains: Could we be hearing more about Royal Enfields in the future? We’ll have to just wait and see.

Your Guide to Planning a Cross Country Motorcycle Trip

Some people ride a motorcycle for the sheer passion and adrenaline. Others ride for the independence and freedom. No matter what your reasoning is for riding, you must love this hobby and lifestyle if you’re planning a trip across the country. Here are important things to keep in mind when planning your cross-country motorcycle trip.

Start and End Points

America is a large country with so many great spots to start and end your trip. The first part of planning is deciding where those two spots are that work best for you. Mark down what places you want to see and that will help you figure out what locations are best to start and end from. If you want to include Route 66 for your motorcycle trip then starting and ending in mid-southern locations is a good idea.

What to Pack

Obviously you can’t bring your entire wardrobe with you on this trip. Packing light will do you and your gas mileage both a favor. Take tips from experienced riders to pinpoint what you will need and what you don’t.

Map or GPS

Consider how you want to navigate your trip. A standard map is the old-school way of riding so make sure your map is up to date on functioning roads and highways if that’s the method you choose. The standard GPS will keep track of your location from point A to point B. If you get lost, there’s an app for that.

Tire Mileage

Before you leave, check your tire mileage and make sure your tires will last for your motorcycle trip. Feel free to “burn rubber” on your trip but keep in mind the lifespan of your tires. If you’re looking to get new tires for this trip, look into touring tires which are specifically made for longer rides.

Keep Log of Visited Locations

Maybe you’re not one to write in a journal, and that’s okay. Whether you simply keep a notepad and pen in your pocket or type notes on your phone, make sure you track the places you visit on your trip. This will let you mark the places you may want to ride again if given the opportunity.

Where You Lay Your Head

Another important factor behind planning your motorcycle trip is determining where you will stay. You have many options as a motorcyclist for where you want to stay. Hotels, motels, airbnb or even camping are great options to make your trip easy and interesting.

Stop to Smell the Roses 

The last thing you should include in your motorcycle trip plans is time to stop and smell the roses. You will be going through monumental landscapes and scenery. Take the time to enjoy it to make this trip one of the most memorable in your lifetime of riding.

Female Riders United: Eastern Canada’s First Female Rally Proves Successful

Women Bikers Increase at Canada’s First Female Rally
Many bikers feel compelled to ride and honor the lives of those who rode with them. The love of motorcycles in Canada and the U.S. has increased, specifically the female biker demographic. Not only are more women riding, more pro-female motorcycle rallies are taking place. One rally, the Backroad Ball, was the first rally by this name held in New Brunswick. Many females showed up in support, so this will likely be the first of many Backroad Balls.

The women of Penobsquis in New Brunswick celebrated their love of bikes over a weekend in June. The event, titled Backroad Ball, was also attended by ladies from the United States. There were at least 100 people that showed up in attendance between June 17-19, 2016. Women riders are up 6% since 1998. According to a survey conducted by the Motorcycle Industry Council, 14% of total motorcycle riders are female. This may seem like a small percentage, but 1.2 million riders are nothing to scoff at. Women are being included in more marketing materials as consumers that enjoy riding bikes as opposed to being an onlooker. It’s worth noting that most female riders are younger than men. The average age of a female rider is 39, for men, it’s 48. About 48% of female riders choose cruiser style bikes, scooters are at 33%, and sports bikes are at 10%.

The event successfully brought together women who love motorcycles across Canada and the U.S. The event was designed to be another version of female biker events such as Babe’s Ride Out and The Dream Roll. In line with the theme of safety, the Safety Service staff gave a speech about proper clothing, keeping your passenger safe, as well as other important topics. New Brunswick claimed 4 casualties due to biker accidents in 2016.

So the awareness of safety was definitely a major topic at the event. Some of the attendees have lost friends in motorcycle accidents, so the theme of safety was not overdone but welcomed. Despite the tragedies that have occurred, women still love to ride and that was the entire purpose of the rally. These attendees ride on in honor of their lost friends and family. These women are not discouraged from riding because of the simple and powerful feeling of total freedom. Lives were honored at the rally with a “minute of thunder”, particularly the life of Erin Robertson.

6 Best Motorcycles of 2016

aprilia-tuono-v4-1100rrEvery year, bikers anticipate the new, awesome line-up of motorcycles that’ll be released in the upcoming year. Though most of us will never be able to try out all of these bikes, it’s fun to shop around and see what features are available and what reviews say about them. These bikes have been out for a while now, so we can get a clear idea of how they handle and which ones are the best to ride. Though opinions may vary, I’ve created a list of some of the best bikes of 2016.

  • Suzuki SV650

This bike is a great throwback to the original model from 1999 that was adored by many bike enthusiasts. The bike has the same look as the original and also uses the same engine and frame, though Suzuki assures the buyer that many parts were switched out and it isn’t merely a reissue of the classic. The horsepower is around 75 and the bike is lighter than its predecessors, which makes for a great ride.

  • Ducati Scrambler Sixty2

This Ducati bike has a great streamlined look, like a cross between two dirt-track and street fighter bikes. Because Ducati makes such high-quality bikes and it also based in Italy, these motorcycles can get pretty expensive, sometimes ranging over $10,000, though this bike is more affordable. It’s light, only around 400 pounds, and has a 399cc Twin engine, which means it isn’t as fast as some other models, though I think it makes up for it. The bike is fairly low to the ground, so it’s ideal for shorter or newer riders.

  • Kawasaki Z800

For a sportbike, the Z800 is ideal. It’s minimalist and the rider sits upright enough that you’ll be comfortable while riding, but it’s still a street 4905bike. This is the first year for this bike, so there will be a definite improvement in the years to come that will make it even more formidable.

  • Honda CBR300R

Honda has once again delivered with a sportbike that is affordable but doesn’t skimp on great features and an awesome ride. The newest version of this bike handles the highway better than previous models but is still good for canyon riding. It has a low weight (under 400 pounds) and is pretty sensitive. It even has ABS, which means it can be ridden when the roads are wet.

  • Harley-Davidson Softail Slim

While this bike isn’t cheap (it’s around $15,000), it’s quite affordable by Harley-Davidson standards. It’s lower than other Harley-Davidson bikes and also offers a great, sleek look. The Softail Slim is old-school and has a 103 cu-in motor that packs a huge punch. If you have some extra cash, check out the S model that has even more features.

  • BMW G310R

Though this bike only has a 300cc engine, which is much smaller than BMW’s usual for bikes, it’s the company’s first attempt at an entry level bike. The quality of this bike exceeded expectations, considering it’s BMW’s first attempt with such a small bike. The motorcycle has ideal weight distribution and it’s a thrill to ride.

Fact or Fiction: Common Motorcycle Myths Explored

Owning a motorcycle is one of the most empowering and free feelings that you ever have. It doesn’t matter what kind of bike you own, crotch rocket, tourer, cruiser, sportster, or what kind of biker that you are 1%er, weekend warrior, or daily rider, having a bike is the ultimate in independence. They’re a lot of myths, legends, and old wives’ tales that come from motorcycle ownership, however. Some of these are outlandish, some are based on misconceptions, and some are outright dangerous. Many are true, most are not. You have probably heard a lot of them yourself in your time of motorcycle ownership. Let’s take a look at some of the more common ones and whether they are fact or fiction.

Sport Tires Make a Bike Go Faster
This is FICTION: Racing tires are designed to be sticky and have a better grip on racing surfaces, but this effect only takes place once the tires reach a certain operating temperature. The truth is that you will more than lily never attain this temperature when you are using your bike for daily riding such as to and from work, or around your local area. While you might get a slight performance increase when you are on long highway trips, the advantage you may gain will not even be remotely close enough to warrant the effort of changing your tires out for the road trip.

In addition, racing tires are not designed for the rough surface of roads and highways. They are meant for the relatively smooth surface of racetracks. The limited tread on the tires and the lack of steel belting will make them wear out faster than regular tires. A lot of money put out, no real benefit gained.

Use of High Octane Fuel Increases a Bike’s Performance
FICTION: High-performance bikes are designed for high octane fuel since the engines are tuned in such a manner that a larger amount of energy is able to be extracted from the fuel. Regular motorcycle engines are not designed for such high compression extraction of energy and as such cannot truly benefit from the use of high octane fuel. The only real advantage of using high octane in your regular motorcycle engine is that there are more cleaning agents and engine boosters in the fuel which may help your engine run better on average. The truth is, though, that you can get the same effect by using a bottle of fuel booster with every fill up of your tank for less than the cost of a gallon of regular unleaded. Save your money and use a high-quality regular gas in your bike and every week drop a bottle of STP into the tank.

By Going Faster, You Can Decrease Front Wheel Wobble
FICTION: This is based partly in truth, however. The truth part is that due to a motorcycles two-wheel design the front wheel, which is thinner than the rear wheel, wobbles naturally. When you hit a bump or some other obstruction the wheel wobble seems to be more pronounced, but then when you speed up it corrects itself. Now for the fiction part and why…wheel wobble can be caused by a wide variety of factors, including issues with your tires or you from the wheel being out of alignment. If your wobble is significant you should get your bike into a service center and have it looked at but at all costs do not try to correct the wobble by riding faster. You could suddenly lose control of the bike and end up in a very bad way.

A Fast-Moving Motorcycle Is Small Enough Not to Register on a Speed Trap
This is FICTION: While your bike may be smaller in size than a car or truck, the truth is that the laser or radar beam that detects your speed is only the size on average as the lead from a mechanical pencil. You get the idea, you may be smaller but there is still enough of you to have the beam hit and there is no way to ride fast enough to beat the speed of light, which is what you are effectively racing against when trying to beat a speed trap.

Lay Down a Motorcycle If You Are Going to Crash
FICTION: This is not only massively fiction, this is also massively stupid, and massively dangerous. Are you trying to lose an arm or a leg, or to totally destroy your $25,000 investment in your bike? Why would you deliberately want to lay down your beloved machine to have it turned into highway hash browns? Back in the old days when bikes were less advanced and most riders had more balls than brains they idea of stopping a bike in an emergency situation was at least plausibly to lay it down and take the side, but today’s bikes are much more advantaged, they go a hell of a lot faster and there are more drivers on the road. The advent of ABS, disk brakes, computer stabilization, and other advancements have made it a lot easier to stop the bike quickly and under control. If you are in an emergency, then it’s best to just apply both brakes hard and controlled and try your best to maintain a vertical position using your feet. Remember, it’s cheaper and easier to replace a pair of biker boots and deal with at worst a sprained ankle than to destroy your bike and perhaps yourself in the process.

Now that you have seen some of these myths settled you are better informed and prepared to ride your motorcycle for many years to come. While there are a lot of myths and wives tales about motorcycles that have some truth to them, the ones that we have discussed here are fully debunked. Now go forth a ride!

Motorist Confessions: What You Don’t Know About Riding A Motorcycle

Everyone wants to ride a motorcycle, but they never really understand all of the things that go into owning and riding a motorcycle. From experience, I had friends who would come up to me and say “that looks so easy, I can ride that thing”, when in all actuality they had no idea of the technique and knowledge that a person needs when deciding to be a motorist.

Here I wanted to confess not only to my friends but to every other person the hidden truths and responsibilities that come along with riding on the open road. If you’re still tempted to be a part of the “bike life” after reading this, then you have what it takes to be a part of the motorcycle community.

 

  • We Drive Way too Fast

Yes, this is true, many of us who take on the challenge of riding a motorcycle can admit that at times we drive way too fast (especially on open roads)

  • Other Drivers Hate Us

Maybe it’s because we can squeeze into compact spaces or cut them off in the middle of the road, but drivers just seem to hate us motorist.

  • Wearing Protective Gear is Important

You may see it time and time again, people riding on a motorcycle without wearing the proper equipment. This should never! Wearing protective gear protects your from any debris or potential harm that can be done while riding.

  • It is NOT Like Riding A Bicycle

This has to be my favorite misconception of motorcycle riding! It is not like riding a bike and should be taken seriously! Before I rode my first motorcycle I had to learn the gears, shifts, and changes. It is not as simple as pushing your legs and keeping upright.
Interested in knowing more about riding motorcycles? Check out my website for more insight and motorcycle related blogs.

Harley-Davidson and the USO

graham zahoruiko HD military

Motorcycle enthusiasm and philanthropy are more related than most people probably realize. An excellent event that combines these, the 9/11 Ride, is mentioned on the front page of this website. There was another story this week that further showcases this relationship.

Gateway Harley-Davidson in St. Louis, Missouri has been part of an 11 year campaign to raise money for the USO of Missouri, and this year raised $20,000. They hope to more than double that amount this year with a goal of $50,000. Over the 11 year period, they have helped raise over $125,000.

Having participated in giving back to active military personnel and veterans for over a decade, Gateway Harley-Davidson is not only committed to the longevity of such a campaign, but also to the constant work and support. Their commitment isn’t shown at just one or two events each year, but regularly. In 2014, for example, events were held monthly at the Gateway dealership, and included a bike show, bike wash, and a memorial ride, among others.

The above article summarizes the mission of Gateway Harley-Davidson, and what they invite those in the surrounding community to join them in, as follows: “Be a part of giving back to those who are willing to make the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom. We believe your support is the catalyst for the inspiration of others to give back and to teach future generations that with freedom there comes sacrifice and with sacrifice there must always be the contributors of gratitude and respect.”