Back the day, there was a place called “Heritage USA”. It was, at the time, the #3 Tourist Destination in America, behind Disney Land at #2, and Disney World at #1. Heritage USA was a huge theme park.
It had a water park, roller coasters, and old timey street kinda like at Disney Land… It even had a magic castle. Continue reading A LESSON IN FAILURE: HONDA VFR1200F
Talk about “Two Peas in a Pod”. No two motorcycles are as similar, yet as different as these two. On one hand, we have the classic Harley Davidson 1200cc V-Twin Sporter Forty Eight. Simple. Burly. Cool. It’s been around for ages.
On the other hand is the new Triumph Bobber which came out in March of 2017. It’s a 1200cc Parallel Twin that looks simple, burly and cool… yet hides a lot of technology inside. Where the Harley has electric turn signals and fuel injection, the Triumph has a Ride by Wire throttle, Traction Control, switchable ride modes, and ABS. It’s an actual modern motorcycle and not any ancient agricultural hold-over from the days of horse drawn plowing.
The Triumph is easy to ride. It’s not intimidating. It’s smooth. It’s well behaved. It’s forgiving. It’s powerful and very quick. Far quicker than the Sportster and faster. The suspension is about as good as I’ve ever felt on a Light Cruiser… and more importantly, the bike handles exceptionally well for a Cruiser. All around, the Triumph Bobber is a Home Run.
Exactly the same way that the Harley is not.
The HD shakes violently, is loud, is obnoxious, it drags its pegs everywhere… including, and I am not kidding here… drags its pegs on a straight road. No, seriously, I’ve done that. The torque is nice, but it’s snatchy thanks to a clutch that needs sorting out. It shifts like the transmission is made of iron bound wood toggles. And it’s 2.2 gallon tank means you are hitting the gas station at every other exit if you are on the freeway. Which I don’t recommend as the bike runs out of steam like a fat guy running for a Waffle House. A lot of guys I’ve talked to who run Sportster 48’s are getting between 52 and 80 miles on a tank, with most of them getting about 60 miles.
Now, the Bobber’s fuel tank isn’t much larger, at 2.4 gallons, but thanks to the more efficient engine, you can go a good deal further, with guys reporting in ranges from 90 to over 120… Which means you can actually go places on the Bobber, places you couldn’t reach on a 48. Try crossing Kansas on I-70… there are stretches that the 48 just couldn’t make across unless you wore a Jerry Can as a Backback. Not that you would want to make that trip on a 48 anyways… Because the suspension is jarring. Combine the suspension with Paint Shaker levels of Engine Vibration, and a seat that is uncomfortable to the point that it hurts your backside… only residents of Brokeback Mountain would be interested in riding these things for very long.
It’s priced about where the Triumph is and the Triumph gives you so more motorcycle – better motorcycle – for the money. In short, there is no reason for the Sportster 48 to even exist anymore.
Bar none, the Triumph Thruxton R is my favorite Sport Bike on the planet. First off, let’s talk about the Looks. This bike is drop dead gorgeous. It looks like what a motorcycle should look like. This is the modern quintessential Cafe Racer, from the company that pretty much invented the Cafe Racer. This is a two-wheeled Audrey Hepburn… always good looking, never goes out of style, and will still be good looking 200 years from now. But under that classic good looking exterior, this bike is truly a modern machine.
The 1200cc Parallel Twin is a pleasure at every position of the Rev Meter… it has plenty of usable power, and I’ve never felt the bike lacking in Pull.
Continue reading My favorite Sport Bike: The Thruxton R.
These are the bikes on my Bucket List. Bikes that one day I will have.
Triumph Rocket III Roadster.
British humor is based on exaggeration. When I first straddled a Rocket III, I thought it was a joke… a two wheeled Monty Python sketch. It’s just so huge. It’s a massive bike! But at the same time, it’s very well balanced, it handles beautifully, its brakes are strong… and that torque! That torque is phenomenal. There is just something undeniably cool about this machine… and that something is the 2300cc Triple engine. 2.3 Liters. It’s fantastic. And these bikes are not priced unreasonably… They retail around 17 Grand.
Ducati Multistrada Enduro
This is the hotrod of the big 1200cc ADV bikes. 160 horsepower, tons of torque, stunning good looks, and fully capable rider assist technology that I’ve seen and felt work first hand. This bike is one of the bigger Wants on my list here.
Ducati XDiavel S
This isn’t Ducati’s Cruiser. No. It’s not a Cruiser. It’s a foot forward positioned sport bike. Ducati’s quickest bike 0-80MPH. It’s very powerful… but it’s power in control. It’s very cool, fists in the wind, power cruising… badass. You can pitch it into the twists like nothing else with your feet out in front of you. It’s the most unique motorcycle on this list… and somehow… the best looking.
BMW R Nine T Scrambler
Great looks… solid engineering background… but there’s something more passionate about this bike other BMW’s. I’ve taken one home as my weekend bike a few times… and each time I get on it, I just cruise till I get lost… not even caring where I go. Few bikes do that for me. This is one of them.
Common Practice is that Semi-Autos and Single Shots are referred to as Pistols on the Form 4473, and Revolvers have their own check box. However, this is quite stupid. The term Pistol can be used for all handguns, and in the past it was quite common for Pistol to be used referring to revolvers.
Arguing that one is not the other and vice versa is like splitting hairs between a Riding Crop and a Driving Whip. The differences do not matter, don‘t even try to make the argument and being a pedantic jackwagon. Because no one should even care. Pistol is as generic a term as “Handgun” and can correctly be used interchangeably.
The 4473 is rife with retrograde thinking. Defining pistol or revolver is just one. Rifle or Shotgun also doesn’t matter. If there has to be any split in type, it should be along the Handgun or Long Gun line. And even there, the line is blurry now with Braced Handguns and SBR’s. I could show you different photos of AR-15’s and it would take the Owner of the gun to tell you which is which. So that’s another thing that needs to be deleted. All the SBS/SBR jackassery that is a part of the National Firearms Act… Which was terrible law making back in 1936 and it’s even worse now.
We have laws and ordinances requiring mufflers on a great many things… but on a firearm it’s illegal, unless you pay 200 Dollars for a TAX STAMP. Something you used to be able to buy from a hardware store for 5 bucks now costs you a Grand, plus 200 bucks, and then you have the asinine wait until His Majesty’s Service deems it’s ready to process your paperwork… average is what, 9 months now? This is beyond retarded. The process for doing a background check to buy a Tactical Shotgun is done pretty much instantly, and if you have a CCW Permit, it’s not even required… and if you don’t pass instantly, the background by law has to be done within 7 days or you can by law go ahead and buy the gun.
But to purchase a bloody muffler – you could have a Baby and start a Family before you get approved for a metal tube with some baffles in it. Never mind you could make a suppressor with stuff most guys have in their garages…. but to buy one requires the Federal Government to deem you worthy and you get to pay 200 dollars for the privilege. Thank you, Sir, may I have another!?!
These laws are utterly useless. They prevent no crime, they serve no purpose. They don’t even make the Feds any money as it requires a whole bunch of people to process everything and at the speed in which they get the job done… if it was a private business doing these transactions, they would be out of business. Well, maybe not – they are selling a product that they don’t have to either buy or produce… selling you a Right. Much like the old Catholics selling Indulgences.
Here’s the deal. We either delete the NFA… Or we make the NFA a Checkbox on the 4473 and they get processed like everything else, all at the same time.
North Carolina is home to one of the best, most advanced 1911 Custom builders in the world, Carolina Arms Group. You’ve read about them before here, and you might again in the future. The owner if CAG is a fellow I call a friend… so it’s not unlikely.
I’ve watched the growth of CAG go from essentially one man with a file to a full fledged Gun Manufacturer. And along the way, the company has evolved in a way that’s quiet remarkable. The quality control gets tighter and tighter, and the standards get higher and higher. The gun themselves have always been amazing. But now I have to admit, these are the best 1911’s money can buy. Period. Let me show you why… Continue reading Visiting Carolina Arms Group Again
For YEARS I’ve advocated the Remington 870 as the Defensive Shotgun of Choice. I’ve always loved the 870, and I still do.
When you take a Mossberg and add the Magpul stock to it… Something magical happens. You have something greater than the sum of it’s parts.
To explain this… let me explain the pros and cons.
The Mossy has the superior shell lifter for tactical reloading and more efficient and safer unloading. The Mossy also has that tang mounted safety that allows for efficient left or right hand shooting. The Remington system is certainly right hand biased, and shelf lifter makes tactical reloading a bit more tricky as you are fighting against the lifter’s spring while trying to shove in a fresh shell. And you have to finesse the gun and roll it to get it unloaded and cleared. It’s less than ideal.
Where the 870 wins is it’s steel construction verses aluminum, and the fact that you can easier run a pistol grip… if you are Right Handed, and you don’t have prehensile thumbs. But really, we make space ships, fighter jets, baseball bats, and armored fighting vehicles out of aluminum… so I don’t think the Steel of the 870 is really that big of an advantage anymore. It does make the gun a bit heavier, and that’s not too bad in a shotgun… but… now this is more personal taste than any actual advantage.
Now enter in the Magpul stock to the equation. The stock has these spacers that you can put in, or pull out, that let’s you set the length of pull to be just right for you and how you want your gun set up. It also allows a perfect positioning of your shooting hand’s thumb to work the safety as needed – Left or Right handed. The stock’s shape also manages the Gauge’s Recoil very well… making it handle very well while firing. It might be different in the way it feels when holding the gun and walking around… but when you shoulder it and raise that gun up onto target – it all comes together. This is the way a shotgun should be.
So… Yes… I am a Mossberg fan. Specifically, the 590 series. A 590 with a Magpul Stock is my Shotgun of Choice now.
The new 2017 Triumph Street Triple 765 RS is going to turn out to be the Bike of Choice for the Rider Aficionado. It will be one of the best new motorcycles of the year, and it’s going to be… already is… a huge Home Run for Triumph Motorcycles. Now, let’s look at the numbers a bit… This bike has 123 horsepower, which is a big increase for the Street Triple… and it’s 5 pounds lighter than the outgoing bike. Lighter, with gobs more power. But at what expense? Continue reading Triumph Street Triple 765 RS
Motus MST. It’s all about the engine. The engine is the business. The engine is fantastic.
The rest of the bike leaves much to be desired… Such as traction control, ride modes, ABS… For the price, it needs those things.
The Rep said “Well, some guys don’t like those things.”
I say bullshit to that. Because this bike is $37,000.00 USD.
Continue reading Motus MST: Utter Disappointment
BMW Invented the modern Adventure market when it comes to Motorcycles. They made it, and they own it, and despite what everyone else says and does, nothing has changed that. Because of the GS.
When I first came to Motorcycles of Charlotte, I had never ridden a BMW R 1200 GS before. And to be honest, it was intimidating. These bikes are huge. And the GS Adventure version, what we call the “GSA” is even more so. I had never even really looked at one up close before… and initially my impression was that “it’s a water buffalo”. I had no interest in even throwing a leg over a water buffalo, let alone take one out for a ride.
Continue reading Bike Review: BMW R 1200 GS Adventure