The Advantages and Disadvantages of Owning a Motorcycle

motorcycle

The Advantages to Owning a Motorcycle

Owning and riding a motorcycle is a thrilling and fun experience for those enjoy travelling the road on two wheels. While riding a motorcycle can be a fun way of getting around compared to taking a car, it presents distinct disadvantages and advantages compared to using a car as you everyday vehicle.

Being a part of a Community

Owning a bike gives you a different kind of membership of a ‘club’ than that of a car owner-whilst there are countless car clubs out there, the social aspect of biking is a different ball game, and has its own ins, outs and quirks-something a petrolhead would be well advised to check out at least once.

The Cost of Vehicles

While there are various conflicting statistics on the subject, in general a motorcycle costs approximately half of a car of equivalent age to maintain. You can use websites such as Lexmoto and other online classifieds to find a bike dealership with fair pricing, whether you decide to purchase a brand new model or quality used motorcycle.

Improved Fuel Efficiency

Motorcycles can offer drastically improved fuel economy and efficiency over a car. A mid-sized motorcycle will typically burn approximately 35 to 60mpg, depending on the size and weight of the bike. With gas prices going up, this is one pleasant benefit to riding a motorcycle which a lot of people don’t realize.

Insurance

The majority of concerned mothers will baulk when their hear their child has a bought a motorcycle, since they imagine getting a call from an emergency room one day. While younger or inexperienced riders will of course be required to pay higher premiums initially, those who cultivate a good record can escape get by paying a lower amount in insurance for their motorcycle every year.

Parking

A small issue, but an importunate one nonetheless. How many times have you driven somewhere in a car only to find that parking is a nightmare?
Riding a motorcycle you can generally always find an ‘available space’ even if where you park it isn’t a parking lot. It is a bit easier to locate parking due to the smaller size and maneuverability of bikes. As long as you can find something sturdy to fix it to if you prefer and a it is safe place you shouldn’t have to worry about anything. security advice at the same time.

Disadvantages to owning a Motorcycle

Obviously, there are some disadvantages to owning a motorcycle, which you’d be wise to consider if you are thinking of getting a motorcycle or motorcycle license.

Safety

We might as well get it out of the way-riding a motorcycle is simply going to be more dangerous than driving in a car, even one with an imperfect safety rating. Aside from being smaller and much harder to see than a car, you’ve got no protection at all from impacts and will inevitably be sent flying from the bike in the event of a crash. Bikes are harder to control to learn how to control due to the 2-wheel configuration. You need to be able to balance well or you run the risk of falling and injuring yourself. This is especially an issue in tight turns.

In order to be safe, make sure that you use predictive thinking as much as possible, buy good quality leathers and a decent helmet, and only ride within the limits of your ability-it’s easy to get carried away and ride dangerously fast.
Limited usage?

Even supercars tend to have more storage space than motorbikes, which begs the question of how practical they can be for anything requiring you to lug a lot of stuff around. Not much of a problem if it’s an average day at the office or you’re out for a morning ride with the guys, but if you and a passenger are going out for the day is there really going to be room for all of your accouterments on the bike? Even with aftermaket storage compartments?

The Weather

When you’re in a car, the windows, chassis and the roof protect you from the elements-not so when you’re on a bike… not so much. Riding a bike in rain or with snow on the ground makes it about 100 times less safe than normal.  Other drivers are less likely to see you and your traction on 2-wheels is going to be a lot worse.

The Last Word

While some avid motorcycle enthusiasts might argue that the benefits of owning a motorbike outweigh the disadvantages, they still will never provide as much safety and practicality as a simple economy car. However, riding on a motorcycle is one of the best ways to travel the open countryside and enjoy the beauty of a specific region or landscape in ways you could never in a car. You get to see things in a totally new way and feel a deeper connection with the road. Even if some might not think it is practical, riding a motorcycle is a whole lot of fun.

Hunt Valley Cars and Coffee Picture Gallery

Hunt Valley Cars and Coffee attracts a wide range of vehicles every Saturday.  This includes exotics, classic, tuners, motorcycles, race cars, and anything else you can think of.

Here is a great picture gallery kindly provided by Jack Moschetto of Gypsy Jack Racing.  You can usually find him at Hunt Valley Cars and Coffee with his beautiful and very customized blue Yamaha R1.  I would have used some of my pictures, but his photography skills are much better then mine!

Where: Hunt Valley Towne Centre, 118 Shawan Rd, Hunt Valley MD, 21030

When: Saturdays, 7:30 am – 10:30 am

Why: Because you like talking with other gearheads!

Timonium Motorcycle Show brings Bikes & Bikers to MD

If you love motorcycles, chrome, leather, and hot babes, than the 2012 Timonium Motorcycle Show was the place for you to be.  The Timonium Motorcycle Show takes place at the Maryland State Fairgrounds every year in February and is one of the largest indoor bike shows up and down the Mid-Atlantic. The show covers around 750,000 square feet of floor space and features all sorts of exciting events and bikes over the three days it takes place.

This year’s show, which took place February 10th-12th, was a cold weekend. A little cold never keeps bikers away as the parking lot was packed, as usual. Walking in from the parking lot you can always tell the enormity of the event by the all the out-of-state license plates, Virginia, Pennsylvania, even as far away as North Carolina. Luckily those people didn’t drive all that way for nothing as this year’s show was quite good.

Walking into the entrance you are greeted by a glorious display of Harley-Davidson motorcycles showcased by Harley-Davidson of Baltimore. My favorite Harley at the show? Honestly… it is too hard to decide.

Behind the Harley-Davidson display was Bob’s BMW with their exciting BMW offerings, which included the special K-1300S HP package. Improving upon BMW’s amazing K-1300 S, the K-1300 S HP package offers a 175-horsepower with carbon parts for the front wheel cover, battery cover and rear seat cowling, making the bike light. It also has a beautiful Akrapović sports silencer and a paddock stand. Only 750 of these amazing motorcycle will be made, which is disappointing, but at least I was able to see one.

Victory Motorcycles was also at the show. The bike everyone always seems to crowd I have noticed is the Victory Vision Tourer. It’s striking lines and amazing shape really catch the eye and make a lot of people stop to take a closer look.  It screams, “Ride me!”

Some other brands I enjoyed seeing at Timonium Motorcycle Show were Triumph and Indian. There is something about the classic look of the Triumph Bonneville and Triumph Scramblers which is so hard not to love. It takes me back to a simpler time, when I wasn’t even alive! I talked with the salesmen about how it has been selling motorcycles in this economy and it seems Triumph sales have endured. As the Bonneville is a popular among celebrities and Marlon Brando rode a Triumph in the famous movie “The Wild One.”

The beautiful Indian Chiefs on display form Indian Motorcycles of New Jersey were quite amazing too. Lots of people stopped and commented on how beautiful the bikes were.  Better save your money because the least expensive Chief model starts around $26,000.  Worth, probably.

There were also many custom bikes at the show.  Paul Teutal Jr.’s first he built after he split from Orange County Choppers was on display at the Geico Insurance booth.  The Geico Insurance bike is a cool looking bike, but it has fairly useless infrared sensor. One of my favorites at the show every year is a motorcycle dedicated to The Beatles. The gas tank is adorned with the famous Abbey Road album cover picture. Who doesn’t love the Beatles? Most interesting vehicle of any kind would have to be the Monocycle. That thing must be hard to ride and control!  There were countless other amazing custom motorcycles at the show as well.

Every bike enthusiasts has a different style and taste, and most likely you will find something that will suit your style at the Timonium Motorcycle Show.  Since this year was the 10th Anniversary of the show, it felt particularly exciting experience. If you missed it this year, be sure to check it out next year.  See my pictures below and check out my International Bikini Team Contest coverage.

2012 ‘Best Of’ Award Winners

Judge’s Choice Best of Show:  #5702 Denny Ritchie / 2010 Roadkill Chopper

People’s Choice Best of Show:  #5715 Rick Levitan / 2002 Harley Davidson Dyna Wide Glide – ‘Beatles Themed Bike’

Best Display of Show:  #5505 Curtis Wolfe / 1966 Harley Davidson Sportster

Best Handcrafted Parts:  #5711 Troy Helmick  / 1974 Honda CL 360

Best Paint of Show:  #5207 Kevin Webb / 2007 Harley Davidson Nightrain

3rd Annual Beatris Landis Memorial Award for Best Antique

Best Antique of Show:   #5818 Brian Kehoe / 1939 Indian Jr. Scout

Publishers Choice Award – Presented By Born to Ride Magazine

#3010 John Nicklin / 1976 Honda Radical Trike

For pictures of the winners check Timonium Motorcycle Show’s Website.

2012 Timonium Motorcycle Show – February 10th-12th

Timonium Motorcycle Show - Harley Davidson Iron 883

Some people might be excited about the Baltimore Auto Show that kicked off today.  Those who love motorcycles in the Baltimore area should be equally excited.  That is because the 2012 Timonium Motorcycle Show is this weekend and looks to be better than every.

The Timonium Motorcycle Show is the Mid-Atlantic regions largest motorcycle show and takes place at the Maryland State Fairgrounds.  New bikes from all the major manufacturers will be covering over 175,000 sq ft. of indoor floorspace.  There will also be custom bike galore as bikers car show off their motorcycles to win in the Bike Show in lots of different classes.  Exhibitors will be selling all sorts of motorcycle goods, accessories, and services.

As usual Michele Smith, the actress and model who hosts “Two Wheel Thunder on the Discover Channel, will be at the show all three days.  She will act as a host and master of ceremonies for several of the planned events.  Emilo Rivera, who plays Marcus Alvarez on the hit FX show “Sons of Anarchy,” will be at the show on Saturday and Sunday to meet the fans.  You can meet him up close and personal, but I hope he is nicer than his character on TV.  Ron Finch, the famous custom bike builder, will be in attendance too.  His motorcycles truly are works of art formed out of metal.

Something most guys will be looking forward to is the International Bikini Team competition taking place over the three days of the show.  The lovely contestants will vie for a chance to win a spot to go to the International Bikini Team U.S. Finals in the Bahamas in August.  I can imagine the competition will be strong and the girls will be pulling out all the stops to win.  I will be looking forward to this.

If you love motorcycles, the 2012 Timonium Motorcycle Show will be the place for you to be this weekend.  The show will be so jam packed with great events, motorcycles, and offerings it is hard to write about it all.  Visit the website for more information and the schedule of events.

What: 2012 Timonium Motorcycle Show

When: February 10th-12th (Friday-Sunday)

Where: Maryland State Fairgrounds, 2200 York Road, Timonium, MD 21093

Admission: $15 for Adults ($10 with $5 off coupon via website), $5 for Children 10-15 years old, Free Children under 10

 

 

The History of Harley-Davidson

 

Harley Davidson Iron 883

Harley-Davidson is an interesting brand with an interesting history.  William S. Harley and Arthur Davidson grew up living next door to each other, and eventually became friends.  Each man participated in America’s industrial revolution during the early part of the 20th century, working in a local manufacturing plant in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

Harley and Davidson worked together with Arthur’s brother, Walter Davidson, to put a uniquely designed internal combustion engine on a bicycle, and thus the famous Harley-Davidson brand was born.

Harley-Davidson helped create the history of the motorcycle and has a special place in the motorcycling world. Based in the heart of the country, Milwaukee Wisconsin, Harley-Davidson contributed to the war effort during World War I, dominated motorcycle racing in the early 1900s, and quickly grew to become the largest motorcycle manufacturer in the world. Surviving the great depression, Harley-Davidson went on to again contribute to the Allied war effort during World War II.

Harley-Davidson is well-known in American culture, history, and movies.  Motorcycle riding represents a freedom and joy that few other things can give you.  That is why riding is such a coveted experience that is sought after by many, but enjoyed by few.

Harley-Davidson supports motorcycling culture in many ways.  An important part of that culture today is safety, and the motorcycle enthusiast must ensure his or her safety and protection in all aspects of riding, including motorcycle insurance.  (Don’t skimp out on insurance, because you will be sorry when you really need it!)

Lots of people enjoy riding motorcycles, including myself and many people I know.  Many will continue to do so for many years to come.

 

Harley-Davidson Violates Your Privacy!

A few weeks ago I got a phone call at my house.  This is how the beginning of the conversation went:

Me: Hello

Rep: Oh this is Jamie, How are you today?

Me:  Ummm… Ok

Rep:  I was just calling to inquire about how your recent visit to Harley-Davidson of Baltimore with sales associate Heidi Harris was?

Me: What?

Rep:  Well you it says here you visited the dealership and spoke with Heidi Harris recently!

Me:  ….NO!

I went on to tell the operator about how I had never set foot in Harley-Davidson of Baltimore.  I actually have no idea where it is located, who she was talking about… and how annoyed and disturbed I was that she was calling me.  I said I had some dealings with another Harley-Davidson (H-D) dealership regarding my blog, but they should not have my personal info except my email.  I asked, “How did you even get my phone number?”  The operator clearly was at a bit of a loss for words, sensing my angry.  She paused then said, “Well… mmm… I really don’t know.  Did you go to any motorcycle events recently?  The answer was a a big, “NO!”  After awhile it came out that my they must have gotten my phone number from when I visited the Harley-Davidson plant in York, PA years ago.  I told the rep, “I am really annoyed I am getting this phone call.”  It turned out the rep was from an independent company and was not directly from Harley-Davidson.  Still this reflects poorly on Harley-Davidson and she claimed she was representing them.  I requested to be removed off the list and assumed that would be end of that.

Not quite!  I got an email on October 28th from Harley-Davidson of Baltimore… from Heidi Harris.  She saw I had mentioned I didn’t want additional information, but she still would be happy for me to stop by and and see what they are all about.  Since I am a licensed rider, I am entitled to demo rides on any Harley product.

I mean really?  WTF?  I don’t really want phone calls at my house about visits to dealerships that never took place.  I specifically request to be taken off the list from future contact and they send me a friggin email!  I guess motorcycle sales must be really down because of the economy.  This email was sent to my Yahoo email address that is checked infrequently since I use Gmail.  This tells you how long Harley-Davidson has been holding onto my info in desperate hopes I will go into a dealership to buy a bike.

Now I never intend to buy a Harley-Davidson!  Especially knowing how much they violate peoples privacy, including my own.  Until they have a change in privacy standards and practices, I would recommend to all my readers to not buy one either.

Hogs & Heroes Fundraiser at Old Glory Harley-Davidson raises $2,000

Cool Bikes!

Old Glory Harley Davidson, in Laurel, raised $2,000 hosting the 2011 Hogs & Heros Poker Run and Bike/Car Show that took place on July 30th, 2011.  The money was evenly split between MD Concerns of Police Survivors (MD COPS) and HEROES Inc.  These organizations raise money for fallen police, military, and firefighters children and families.  These service men and women have given their lives for serving others, and it’s wonderful to see Old Glory hosting an event like this to support these wonderful organizations.

It was a great event with all sorts of cool bikes, and cars.  Next year’s Hogs & Heroes at Old Glory should raise even more money.  Check out additional pictures from my Flickr image gallery.