Archives for May 2011

Sarah Palin Rides Harley Bagger Into DC For Memorial Day Rolling Thunder

Sarah Palin surprised people by riding into DC On the back of a Harley bagger for the start of Rolling Thunder this Memorial Day weekend. Some Harley riders were delighted and others felt it was inappropriate of her to mix self promotion/politics and this event to remember the fallen military.

Click Sarah Palin On  Harley to view the TV video clip.

Help Dave Roper Ride 1911 Indian At Isle of Man TT Motorcycle Race

I have known and raced with my old friend and famed motorcycle racer Dave Roper since the 1970s. He is a wonderful, caring and generous man and one heck of a racer.
Last year Dave Roper approached me at American Iron Magazine with an idea of riding a 1911 Indian motorcycle racerbike at this year’s Isle of Man to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the one and only time an American motorcycle won the famed Isle of Man races.
Dave partnered up with ex-Antique Motorcycle Club of America president Pete Gagen to create a team. They are well into the plans and are looking for support for their efforts. Please read about the efforts and support if you can at Dave Roper’s blog. – Buzz Kanter
Barely 100 years have passed since a team of Indian motorcycles swept the first three places at the Isle of Man Tourist Trophy, and now another Indian entry is set to commemorate this historic victory of the first and only American brand to win a TT race. 
A replica of the special 580 cc Indian TT model V-twin has been built by Canadian entrant Peter Gagan and on Friday, June 10, 2011 it will lead the centenary parade lap for historic machines. The rider will be Dave Roper, the first American ever to win an Isle of Man TT. Roper has a lifetime of achievement in vintage racing, including more than 20 AHRMA national championships as well as his win of the 1984 Senior Classic TT on a G50 Matchless.
Roper will be first of 26 starters in the “Milestones of the Mountain” parade lap, leading such legends as Giacomo Agostini, Phil Read and current TT star John McGuinness. They and their famous machines represent highlights in the history of the Tourist Trophy  in the 100 years since its adoption of the full 37.73 mile Mountain Course. The TT was first held on a shorter course starting in 1907.
The Indian factory’s star rider in the 1911 Senior Tourist Trophy race was Canadian-born board track legend Jacob DeRosier, supported by three local riders from England and Ireland. In the event, though, DeRosier suffered tire failure and was disqualified for accepting outside help while Oliver Godfrey, Charles Franklin and Arthur Moorhouse swept the first three places.
Their mounts were special machines built at the Indian factory in Springfield, Mass., to comply with TT rules. Single-cylinder machines were limited to 500 cc displacement while twins, which operated less efficiently with the atmospherically-opened inlet valves which were common at the time, were given an 80 cc advantage. Chief engineer Oscar Hedstrom adapted a 680 cc Indian “little twin” with a smaller cylinder bore and added a two-speed transmission from the company’s 1,000 cc “big twin” to cope with the demands of the hilly Isle of Man course.
None of these special machines survived intact to the present day, but fortunately about 10 years ago Peter Gagan located a 580 cc Indian racing engine in England. It may have been from one of the original TT machines but the records that could verify it do not exist. Working from his home in White Rock, British Columbia, Gagan constructed a replica using a 1911 Indian frame and transmission. No drawings of the TT bikes exist, so the frame modifications and exhaust pipes had to be fabricated according to photographs of the originals. The machine bears Godfrey’s race number 26.
Gagan has a lifetime of experience with early motorcycles, having been a member for more than 50 years of the Antique Motorcycle Club of America, of which he is past president. He has also served as president of the Antique Motorcycle Foundation and was founder of the Canadian Vintage Motorcycle Group.
Gagan and his team are eager to hear from potential sponsors of this historic return to the legendary Isle of Man. They can be reached at
Please note also the Paypal link elsewhere on this page to help Dave Roper with the considerable expense of attending this historic event.
Click HERE to support Dave’s efforts with your support. Even $10 helps.

Pro-One Harley Billet Saddlebag Latch Covers

Pro-One’s new Billet Saddlebag Latch Covers are now available in Smooth or Ball Milled style for ’93 and later Touring Models.

> CNC machined from solid Billet Aluminum.
> Your choice of show-chrome or durable Black Anodized finish.
> Your choice of Smooth or Ball Milled style.
> Includes chrome mounting hardware.
> Fits 1993 and later Touring Models.
> Easy to install.

Saddlemen Signature Motorcycle Seat By Todd’s Cycles

Saddlemen enlisted custom bike builder Todd Silicato, founder of Todd’s Cycles to apply his unique styling sense to create the ultimate low-profile bagger seat that’s also great for touring. Keeping Saddlemen technology and quality at the center of this new saddle, Todd sculpted the seat to drop down into the bike for a low riding position. As with the standard Pro Tour seat, the Todd’s Cycles version is made with Saddlemen’s famous combination of progressive density foam and patented SaddleGelTM.

Features include: a lowered riding position which helps the rider touch the ground with added confidence. A slim, supportive bucket seat and contoured passenger section with contrasting carbon fiber and SaddleHydeTM cover. And a progressive density foam and SaddleGelTM interior to ease tailbone pressure and increase comfort.
Available at your local Drag Specialties dealer. Visit or more information.

Since 1987, Saddlemen has been a leader in motorcycle accessories by offering comfort solutions to motorcyclists. Saddlemen continues to offer products born from the latest designs, combined with the features and value that have set the industry standard. All Saddlemen seats are made in the U.S.A.

UPDATE My Dual Carb Harley Panhead Motorcycle Bobber

After ignoring my 1949 Harley Panhead bobber (with dual Linkert carbs) for more than two years after the top to bottom engine rebuild I am getting it back on the road. In addition to the usual break in issues – especially with the modern crappy gasoline, I have to overcome a number of other challanges.

1949 Harley Panhead bobber motorcycle

Hope to put a few thousand miles on this bike this summer and possibly ride it on the Motorcycle Kickstart Classic Ride in October.

Harley Hits The Road This Summer With Willie Nelson’s Country Throwdown

Milwaukee (May 25, 2011) – Two American icons, outlaw country music and Harley-Davidson Motor Company, launch the summer concert season this Memorial Day weekend with Willie Nelson’s Country Throwdown tour. This second annual outdoor music tour mixes some of the hottest young artists in country music with the rogue roots of Harley-Davidson and America.

“Harley-Davidson and Country Throwdown represent the true essence of the American spirit, one that is deeply rooted in freedom and self-expression with a rebel spirit that never dies.” says Amanda Lee, Communications Manager at Harley-Davidson. “This spirit burns across generations and is one of the reasons why Harley-Davidson is the number one selling on-street motorcycle among Young Adults age 18-34 in the U.S.”

Harley-Davidson’s Golden Horse Saloon will be on site to rev up the action at each Country Throwdown tour stop. Tour headliners include Jamey Johnson, Lee Brice, Randy Houser and the legendary Willie Nelson. Randy Houser, fellow H-D rider, will be onsite at the Golden Horse Saloon before each of his performances to sign autographs and mingle with fans. Guests have the opportunity to swing their leg over a selection of Harley-Davidson motorcycles on display, including some of the newest additions to the Dark Custom family of bikes. Those who want to take the first step toward riding can feel the thrill of the throttle, fire up the engine and shift through the gears on a real Harley-Davidson motorcycle with JUMPSTART, Harley’s signature stationary riding experience – no license or riding experience required. There will also be VIP motorcycle parking for all those who already roll on two wheels.

Country Throwdown kicks off May 27th in Philadelphia, Pa., with 25 stops across America throughout June. The tour concludes July 4th with a wrap party at historic Billy Bob’s in Fort Worth, Texas. For more information on Country Throwdown and to find a tour stop near you, visit:

Harley-Davidson Motor Company produces heavyweight custom, cruiser and touring motorcycles and offers a complete line of Harley-Davidson motorcycle parts, accessories, riding gear and apparel, and general merchandise. For more information, visit Harley-Davidson’s Web site at

Motorcycle News – Doug Polen To AMA Motorcycle Hall Of Fame

PICKERINGTON, Ohio — The Motorcycle Hall of Fame is pleased to announce that Doug Polen, a dominant national and world champion roadracer in the late 1980s and early 1990s, will be inducted into the Motorcycle Hall of Fame as part of the 2011 American Motorcyclist Association (AMA) Legends & Champions Weekend at the Red Rock Resort in Las Vegas, Nev., Nov. 18-20.

“Any fan of motorcycle roadracing will remember Doug’s amazing — and dominating — championship runs on the AMA and World Superbike stages,” said Don Rosene, a member of the American Motorcycle Heritage Foundation Board of Directors, which raises money for the Hall of Fame. “At a time when the series saw plenty of fast competitors, Doug was clearly the fastest. And he’s still on the track, racing, teaching and promoting motorcycles and motorcycling.”

Polen had a series of strong winning performances in motorcycle roadracing in the United States and abroad, including winning the Suzuki GSX-R National Cup Championship Series 750cc title in 1986 and 17 of 26 races in the World Superbike Championship Series in 1991, earning the World Superbike title by 150 points. He also was the Japan Formula 1 and Formula 3 National Champion in 1989, AMA 600cc Supersport Champion in 1987 and 1988, AMA 750cc Supersport Champion in 1988, World Superbike Champion in 1992, AMA Superbike Champion in 1993 and World Endurance Champion in 1997 and 1998.

Polen remains active in motorcycling today, running his Doug Polen’s 1 on 1 Riding School (, featuring radio communications with students during track sessions.

Polen said he was humbled by the honor.

“The thing is that you ride and you race, and when you’re doing it, you’re doing it to have fun and be competitive against other people, but also to try and make a mark and have something you can look back on and be proud of,” Polen said. “This is kind of like putting a stamp of approval, so to speak, on my career, and I take it as a very flattering thing.”

Polen joins Cycle magazine editor Phil Schilling and Parts Unlimited founder Fred Fox as announced members of the Motorcycle Hall of Fame Class of 2011. The rest of the 2011 inductees will be announced in random order in coming days.

The Class of 2011 will officially be inducted into the Motorcycle Hall of Fame on Nov. 18 as part of the AMA Legends & Champions Weekend. In addition to the induction ceremony, the weekend includes the 2011 Motorcycle Hall of Fame Concours d’Elegance on Saturday, Nov. 19, featuring some of the country’s most impressive original and restored classic motorcycles. The AMA Racing Championship Banquet closes out the weekend on Sunday, Nov. 20, where AMA Racing amateur champions of all ages will be recognized for their 2011 accomplishments.

Tickets for the AMA Legends & Champions weekend are now available through this online registration form: Tickets may be ordered over the phone by calling (800) 262-5646.

The AMA Legends & Champions Weekend also includes the final round of the GEICO AMA EnduroCross National Championship Series on Saturday evening, Nov. 19. EnduroCross tickets are available at or by phone at (702) 284-7777 or (888) 234-2334.

The AMA Legends & Champions Weekend will be held at the Las Vegas Red Rock Resort, a world-class spa, hotel and casino, featuring a range of entertainment, dining and family-friendly attractions. The facility’s expansive ballrooms provide a stunning backdrop for the AMA Legends & Champions Weekend, which is certain to be memorable for the 2011 inductees, champions, families, friends and fans. Room reservations are available now at a special group rate by calling (866) 767-7773 and referencing group AMA or AMERICANMOTO. Online room reservations are available at For online reservations, use the promo code RCIMOTR.

More information about the Motorcycle Hall of Fame can be found at

Xtreme Music The Tour At Deadwood Mountain Grand

DEADWOOD, S.D. – It’s official. Country stars Big & Rich and Gretchen Wilson are combining forces for the first time in five years to bring their “Xtreme Music The Tour” to  Deadwood Mountain Grand. And they’re bringing with them special guests Cowboy Troy and Two-Foot Fred.

The multi-platinum powerhouse will perform on Friday, July 8, in the 2,500-seat music and entertainment hall at Deadwood’s newest gaming resort. The Deadwood Mountain Grand casino, restaurant and entertainment center are on schedule to open July 1. The luxury hotel will open in the fall.

Gretchen Wilson exploded onto the national music scene with her smash hit “Redneck Woman” and went on to win virtually every award for which she was nominated, including nods from the Grammys, CMA, ACM, People’s Choice and more.

Big & Rich – “Big” Kenny Alphin and John Rich — are no strangers to Deadwood. They played here often when they first started recording together, and they made a lot of friends here. Their song “Deadwood Mountain” was inspired by Deadwood’s historic Mount Moriah Cemetery. They wrote “8th of November,” a song about heroism in the Vietnam War, after meeting Deadwood resident Niles Harris, a Vietnam veteran.

In fact, Big Kenny Alphin is one of the partners in Deadwood Mountain Grand, and the venue was named for the Big & Rich song. Big Kenny has been writing about the new venue on Facebook ( “I will (be) playing this showroom come July with all my friends on the Xtreme Tour. We’re bringing the Muzik Mafia to Deadwood!” he wrote.

“Big & Rich and Gretchen Wilson are among the best entertainers out there, and they’ll be at the Deadwood Mountain Grand. I couldn’t think of a more exciting way to get things started at Deadwood’s newest resort,” said Tim Brown, Deadwood Mountain Grand President and General Manager.

The historic 1906 Homestake Mining Co. ore processing plant overlooking downtown Deadwood is being converted into 98 hotel rooms, 210 state-of-the-art casino games, an entertainment-and-event center with seating for 2,500 guests and a multi-level parking garage. Crews are completely renovating the structure while retaining its historic mining heritage.

The show at Deadwood Mountain Grand is part of the multi-city Xtreme Muzik tour beginning June 18. Sharing one eight-piece band on a custom stage that includes, of course, a fully-operational bar as the centerpiece, this unique show will offer something to fans rarely seen in modern touring – the co-headliners will rarely leave the stage. The music will not stop, as Big & Rich and Gretchen perform hit after hit and often join in on each other’s songs.

“You’re going to see me come out and sing on Big & Rich songs; you’re going to see John and Kenny sing on my songs, and there’s no telling where Two-Foot and Cowboy Troy will be!” Gretchen said.

“They’ll be up at the bar,” quipped John. “You know, this crew started out with a bunch of us hanging out in little clubs playing all kinds of music,” he added, paying homage to the Muzik Mafia movement they started years ago in Nashville. “We want to give our fans not just a great night of music but an experience they’ll talk about for a long time.”

Tickets for the show will go on sale Thursday, May 19, at all Ticketmaster retail outlets, and the Ticketmaster phone line, 800-745-3000.

LAT Hi-Tech V-Twin Motorcycle Gear Oil

North County Customs has just introduced a very serious gear oil for your American V-Twin. LAT oils are designed specifically to provide maximum protection under extreme loads and high temperatures encountered by Cruisers and Baggers alike.

LAT provides superior shock load and wear protection under the most extreme conditions and smoother more precise shifting. The unique lubricant is formulated from the highest quality synthetic base oils fortified with VI improvers, rust inhibitors, foam suppressants and LAT’s exclusive LFR extreme pressure additive.

Available in 75w140 it exceeds API GL-5. LAT GEAR OIL promotes lower operating temperatures, reduced friction, less wear, superior overall performance and longer life.

For complete details contact LAT at 888-528-6457 or visit them on the Web at

HARLEY NEWS Harley-Davidson Museum Opens Vault

Harley-Davidson Museum® Gets Ready to Open the Vault for Upcoming Summer Exhibit

From secret prototypes to century-old artifacts, exhibit will offer fascinating glimpse inside the Company’s Archives

With more than 108 years of history, Harley-Davidson is bound to have some interesting pieces buried deep in its Archives. Even the most dedicated motorcycle enthusiast is in for more than a few surprises when the special summer exhibit, Collection X: Weird, Wild Wonders of the Harley-Davidson Museum, opens June 11. The motorcycles, leathers, and accessories for which the Company is known make up just a small fraction of the hundreds of artifacts that will be on display in the 10,000-square-foot Garage exhibit space at the Museum through August 21.

The never-before-seen prototype bikes that were created as concepts but never manufactured or sold are sure to get bikers and engineering enthusiasts talking. History buffs will revel in [Read more…]