AI Garage Install: Daymakers (Intro)

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The washers that come with the Daymaker headlight are only used with the Road Glide installation.

The washers that come with the Daymaker headlight are only used with the Road Glide installation.

Night And Day

Harley-Davidson Daymaker LEDs

text and photos by Tricia Szulewski

Dave Buerk isn’t just a fan of motorcycle safety; he’s actually a chief instructor for the Connecticut Rider Education Program (CONREP). To say that he does everything possible to make his ride a safe one is a monumental understatement. So when Harley came out with its vastly improved LED lighting for its Project RUSHMORE 2014 baggers, Daymaker, Dave read the reviews and promptly ordered a replacement headlight and fog lights for his 2009 Harley-Davidson FLHTCU Ultra Classic Electra Glide. Specifically, he purchased the Daymaker Reflector LED headlight (#67700173/$424.95) and Daymaker Reflector LED auxiliary lights (#68000075/$359.95).

Step 1: Dave removes the accessory chrome headlight trim ring with a Phillips screwdriver and puts it aside for reuse.

Step 1: Dave removes the accessory chrome headlight trim ring with a Phillips screwdriver and puts it aside for reuse.

Dave is an exceptional rider, admirable coach, and all-around good guy. But a handy wrench, he is not. That said, he tackled the installation of the Daymakers like a pro. Armed with only the few tools needed and a well-lit garage, Dave had the new plug-n-play lighting installed and running in about an hour and a half. And that includes time spent cleaning all the exposed nasty dirt when taking parts off the bike, pausing for pictures, and documenting each step.

The Daymaker LEDs imitate natural daylight by producing a bright-white color. Comparing them to the stock halogens, it’s a no brainer how much cleaner the light is. The headlight works by distributing two separate rays of light through two D-shaped lenses. The low beam shines light directly in front of the bike while the other projects a super-bright, focused high beam.

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Before (left) with Daymakers (right)


To read the full 21 steps on how Dave Buerk installs Harley-Davidson Daymaker LEDs, the issue is on newsstands NOW!


For a digital delivery, click here.


Harley Motorcycle Rain Gear

No one can say I didn’t give this rain gear a long-term test! I’ve been wearing H-D’s Paclite rain jacket and pants combo for almost three years. Heck, I still have short hair in the product shot, which we always do as soon as we get the gear. This Gore-Tex suit, which includes a jacket with hood (#98306-05VX/000L, $215-$225) and pants (#98307-05VX/000S, $185-$195) can be purchased separately, which is a good thing since I needed a large jacket and short pants.

This suit has served me well on many a road trip. The jacket truly is waterproof, windproof, and breathable. The Gore-Tex material is the reason why this gear works so well, since it keeps water out, but doesn’t make you sweat. There’s a full-zipper front closure that’s covered by a watertight seam seal. The cuffs are elastic and the hood, which is removable, fits under a full helmet and helps keep you dry and warm. There are two zippered pockets, but they’re not watertight, so choose wisely what you put in them.

As for the pants, all the above Gore-Tex stuff applies here, too. The zipper down the side of each leg is also covered by a watertight seam seal. Inside both legs is a heat-resistant shield, which has held up well to whatever I’ve put it through. My favorite feature is that when the butt is wet it doesn’t slide around on the seat easily. These pants also come with removable suspenders, but I never used them.

Hopefully, I won’t hit rain on this year’s Dallas-to-Daytona trip for Bike Week. But if I do, I’ll have this gear with me, since stopping is not an option. If I choose to ride to an event, I have to be there on time, no matter what the weather does. AIM

–Chris Maida

Harley-Davidson Motor Company
See your local H-D dealer

Tour Master Motorcycle Rain Gear

I’ll be the first to admit I’d prefer not to ride in the rain, but there are times when you just have to do it. And when that happens, you want to be wearing a rain suit that keeps the wet stuff where it belongs: outside! The other mandatory trait for a motorcycle rain suit is that it not take up much packing room, yet be designed so as not to cause you to curse the product the entire time you have it on. The Tour Master Sentinel jacket and pants are extremely lightweight and can be rolled into a small bundle. Plus, they did a great job of keeping me dry. But it was the little details that really made the Sentinel shine.

The Sentinel has a simple gray-on-black pattern, with reflective piping so you can easily be seen at night, and extra material on the shoulders to bead away the rain. It has plenty of big pockets on the chest and sides, and fits over your riding jacket. There’s also a handy pocket inside the jacket behind your waist, which sits right above the zipper that joins the jacket and pants for added rain protection. The wrists secure closed, and a small fabric hood unfurls from a hidden  zippered neck roll to fit close to your head under your helmet. All this means that you’re going to stay dry once you’re zippered in, but the lightweight jacket is also breathable thanks to small, covered vents on the back, so you don’t get hot when wearing it.

The pants are roomy, which I prefer, since I’m not planning on walking around Main Street with them on. And they have extra water-repellent material in the places that are going to get soaked, namely your lower legs, seat, and crotch.

The bottom line is that I rode through some good downpours with this rain suit, and stayed dry and comfortable without feeling like I had a rubber sweat suit on. The Sentinel definitely gets my seal of approval. AIM

–Terry O’Brien of American Iron Magazine, the world’s best selling Harley magazine.

Tour master/Helmet House
26855 Malibu Hills Rd.
Dept. AIM
Calabasas Hills, CA 91301

Harley-Davidson Motorcycle Knives

Harley Pocket Knife

A wise man once told me “Always carry a knife.” Well, over the years, I’ve taken that to heart and carried a plethora of knives. But these days I usually carry one of the Harley-Davidson knives shown here. There are about a dozen different Harley-branded knives to choose from, and the two shown are the Mini-Hardtail (#13150, $200) and the Nitrous (#13710BK, $150). Made by Benchmade Knife Company, which has been making quality knives since 1988, the company’s simple philosophy is “Make it cool, make it solid, make it happen, and definitely make it Benchmade.”

All Benchmade products feature world-class craftsmanship and are proudly made in the US. These two knives are similar in size and weight, but boast different finishes and features. Also, be warned that they are amazingly sharp when new. The Mini Hardtail (far left) has a D2 high-grade tool steel modified clip-point blade and a patented AXIS locking mechanism. It measures 7-1/2″ open with a 3-1/4″ blade, 4-1/4″ closed, and weighs in at 3 ounces. The body of this knife is machined from billet aluminum and features G-10 inserts with skull designs. The steel carry clip is reversible, and the blade opens manually with ambidextrous thumb studs. I opted for a plain edge and no coating on the blade for this knife.

The Nitrous (left) offers a 154CM premium stainless steal clip-point blade and a modified locking-liner. This knife weighs in at 2.7 ounces and measures 8″ opened with a 3.4″ blade, and 4-1/2″ closed. It snaps open thanks to the Nitrous Assist opening mechanism, and looks pretty cool with its black G-10 handle and milled flames. On this particular knife, I opted for a plain edge and a proprietary BK1 black, corrosion-resistant-coated blade.

Overall, both of these Harley-Davison knives feature the superior quality and finish that I would expect from a company like Benchmade. If you carry a knife, I highly recommend either of the two you see here. AIM

–Joe Knezevic as published in American Iron Magazine, the world’s best selling Harley magazine.

Benchmade Knife Company

MDM Cycle Enclosures Harley Cover

Motorcycle cover shed

A recent turn of events beyond my control has made it impossible for me to put a motorcycle, or anything else for that matter, in my garage. To address this potentially catastrophic problem, I called Don Skoldberg, general manager at MDM Products for some advice. Good move on my part, because Don’s company had an easy solution: the Cycle Enclosure ($318), which is designed for temporary storage of just about anything two wheeled.

With a one-piece cover and color-coded metal and fiberglass poles, this system sets up something like a camping tent. MDM claims that assembly takes 10 minutes, but, genius that I am, it took me considerably longer. I started the process at sundown and didn’t finish until it was dark. Smart, right?

The Cycle Enclosure has a symmetrical shape, which means that the cover never touches your parked motorcycle, even when opening and closing the shed. In other words, if handled correctly, there’s no need to fret about scuffs or scratches. Even better, I can park a bike with a hot engine and exhaust, then close it with no worries because air vents on each side of the enclosure prevent condensation during storage. Good stuff. The cover is made from a woven marine fabric that has a commercially sewed construction for durability. Thanks to gusseted corners and strips of hook-and-loop fasteners, the Enclosure seals up so tightly that it’s totally waterproof. Trust me. Mine has stood up to heavy rain, marble-sized hail, and high winds.

At 40″ wide and 126″ long, the MDM Cycle Enclosure is a relatively small package that offers a ton of convenience. My only advice is that if you’re not a genius like yours truly, don’t try to assemble it in the dark. AIM

–Joe Knezevic as published in American Iron Magazine, the world’s best selling Harley magazine.

MDM Products

Gator Skins Cold Weather Riding Gear

Like a salmon going back to its breeding grounds, every year I ride from the frozen Northeast or Dallas to Daytona, Florida, for Bike Week. If I’m riding down the coast, I have to be hermetically sealed in gear and wearing electric gloves, vest, and socks to keep from freezing my butt off, since the temps are usually in the 20s or teens when standing still. At highway speeds, it’s well below zero! As you would expect, my preferred route is from Dallas, where the temps, though only in the 40s or 50s, are a heck of a lot easier to deal with!

But that doesn’t mean I get away with just a T-shirt. I still have to wear something under my leather jacket and blue jeans to keep the blood flowing. That’s where Gator Skins come into play. This new thermal underwear kept me nice and warm, without lots of bulky fabric. Gator Skins are knitted from an extremely thin, lightweight, and breathable fabric that’s also waterproof. Developed by DuPont researchers, this nonshrinking fabric, which is made of ultra microfibers smaller than a human red blood cell, holds in your body heat better than any other fabric. I stayed toasty warm and many times forgot I was even wearing them. When I no longer needed them, both the shirt and pants rolled up into a bundle smaller than my jeans. Gator Skins are just what I needed for my cold weather road trips.

Now if only somebody at Calvin Klein would see this review, maybe I can start a new career being a famous underwear model! AIM
–Chris Maida as published in American Iron Magazine, the world’s best selling Harley magazine.

Gator Skins
1721 Whiteford Rd.,
Dept. AIM
York, PA 17402

EAR Inc. 3-1 System For Harley Riders

I’ve been wearing custom earplugs ever since I met the folks from EAR Inc. My first set was a pair of Insta-Molds made for me on the spot at the Sturgis rally. After getting molds made of my ears, I graduated to a pair of Chameleon Ears. From there I upgraded to Acoustic Filtered Chameleon Ears, which are designed to reduce louder sounds to a comfortable level while still allowing speech recognition.

Recently, I decided it might be nice to listen to some tunes if I wanted to. So I called up the folks at EAR and got one of its 3-1 Systems. This is, basically, the best parts of their Musicians Filtered Ear Plugs and OTS High-Definition sports monitors combined into a motorcycle-friendly, versatile earplug.

This product is a set of small, custom-fitted plugs that have snap ring receivers molded to their outside ends, giving me three options. I can choose to cap the ends with either a solid cap to block out all noise, or a filtered cap that provides 15dB of sound reduction across all frequencies. When I want to listen to some tunes, I uncap the earplugs and snap the two coiled, law enforcement-type sound tubes into to the end of each plug. These tubes lead to a transducer and a cable that ends in a standard 3.5mm plug, which allows me to hook into any music source with a jack. Not only do the 3-1s create a fantastic sound, they also come with a great little carry case so you don’t lose any parts.

Like all fitted earplugs, these take a little getting used to, especially when inserting and removing the plugs, as you have to push, pull, and turn at the same time. But it’s worth it because the 3-1 System really put me in my own little world. So if you ever motor up alongside me to say hello, and I don’t respond, it doesn’t necessarily mean I’m being rude. I may just be plugged in, enjoying my favorite tunes. Or not! AIM

–Joe Knezevic as published in American Iron Magazine, the world’s best selling Harley magazine.

EAR Inc.

Helmet Accessories – How To Secure Your Motorcycle Helmet

Secure Your Motorcycle Lock Right!

If you’ve ever met me at an event, you may have noticed that I travel light. By that I mean no chains, pins, rings, etc. Heck, I don’t even like loose change in my pockets. With a mindset like that, the last thing I want to haul around with me is a helmet! But what do you do with the thing? Of course, if I’m riding a bagger that day, the lid goes under a lid. But since I’m usually on a sleek custom of some sort, I’m left with either carrying a helmet around (not likely), or leaving it on the bike and hoping some idiot doesn’t walk off with it.

But not anymore thanks to the Helmet Secure! This little chrome gizmo ($59.99), which fits 7/8″-, 1″-, and 1-1/4″-diameter handlebars (just use the proper rubber insert), gets attached to bars via its clamp base and supplied Allen key. Once installed, this mounting system becomes inaccessible when the attached cable is locked into position. You run the loose end of this precoiled steel cable through the face or straps of your helmet. The cable then gets locked into the base of the Helmet Secure via the supplied key, of which you get two.

Now, if I can just find a way to get the ignition and locks to all work on the same key, I can get rid of all this metal in my back pocket! AIM

–Chris Maida as published in American Iron Magazine, the world’s best selling Harley magazine.

Helmet Secure
2130 Fillmore St.
#183, Dept. AIM
San Francisco, CA 94115