WIN THIS HARLEY! Dennis Kirk Sweepstakes Update IV

This 2009 Fat Boy came to us relatively bone stock and ready to revamp. Now, it leaves our hands a new bike, ready to be ridden by it's a new owner, who can be you!

This 2009 Fat Boy came to us relatively bone stock and ready to revamp. Now, it leaves our hands a new bike, ready to be ridden by it’s a new owner, which can be you!

Centuries of poets, bards, and musicians have long serenaded the masses with the wonders of the world shaking the cold of winter and embracing a rebirth in spring and summer. So, too, are we excited for the changing weather, albeit with less pretty wordification. As we move into the riding season for much of the country, our American Iron Garage Spring issue is in still circulating the newsstands, and Summer will be hitting the shelves at the end of May. There’s still much to be seen on our Dennis Kirk/American Iron Magazine giveaway Fat Boy, with the upcoming issues of AIG rife with installs and how-to guides, and there’s plenty of time for you to enter to win. Head over to Greaserag.com to order any and all back issues of AIG, and keep your eyes peeled for these Fat Boy installs, as well as many others, in the our Summer issue.

We got our hands around some Love Jugs Cool Masters, a pair of external cooling fans that promote efficient air flow over those hot twins while crawling through traffic. It was a fairly straightforward install, and we were even able to complete a Klock Werks project from Spring that required an ignition relocation. The exhaust system also received some TLC in the form of blacked-out 2-into-1 Freedom Exhaust Outlaws, and we noted some tips and tricks to get through this install properly. Lastly, we cleaned up the stock coil and hanging wires with an ACCEL Stealth SuperCoil install, a project that might sound daunting but was actually finished with relative ease. The winner of this sweepstakes will surely be a happy new owner.

The Love Jugs assembly mounted right onto the left side of the Fat Boy, where the horn used to be. Who needs that thing, anyway? (To be relocated!)

The Love Jugs assembly mounted right onto the left side of the Fat Boy, where the horn used to be. Who needs that thing, anyway? (To be relocated!)

Love Jugs Cool Masters will keep the future owner's skivvies a little drier this summer.

Love Jugs Cool Masters will keep the future owner’s skivvies a little drier this summer. Notice the Klock Werks ignition relocation mount, too!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And how can that new owner be you? Be sure to check out our Summer (On sale 5/31) issue to get a peep into the American Iron ossuaries where all the handiwork gets did, and purchase the coming issues to follow along with in-depth articles and close-up photos of the modifications. And how can this Fat Boy be yours? Subscribe to American Iron Magazine(877.693.3572) and you are automatically entered to win. So subscribe today. Or, you can enter with no purchase necessary at denniskirk.com.

Dangling wires be gone, this stock coil setup hits the bricks.

Dangling wires be gone, this stock coil setup hits the bricks.

Off comes the incumbent exhausts! Impeach!

Off comes the incumbent exhausts! Impeach!

Notice anything different? ACCEL Stealth SuperCoils clean up the left side reaaal nice.

Notice anything different? ACCEL Stealth SuperCoils clean up the left side reaaal nice.

On goes the Outlaws. Draw!

On goes the Outlaws. Draw!

WIN THIS HARLEY! Dennis Kirk Sweepstakes Update III

Sweeps-Bike-Before-right

This 2009 Fat Boy came to us used, but will leave a very different bike, possibly in your hands!

The Dennis Kirk Sweepstakes is still underway, as we continue to modify this beauty of a Fat Boy throughout the rest of this year’s issues. We will continue to tease the modifications and installs we do to the bike on the site, and the full install stories are available for your viewing pleasures in our Winter issue of American Iron Garage, on newsstands until 3/8, and in our Spring issue set to hit newsstands that very same day. As always, all back issues are available for purchase online at GreaseRag.com.

See that stock oval air cleaner up there? You can kiss it goodbye, tell it to suck wind, as we’re cleaning that look right up with a brand new Crusher air cleaner. Crusher, the performance division of Kuryakyn, has parts available in the Dennis Kirk catalog and 12 parts to fit a number of different models. We whole-heartedly approve of the new look, and we’re sure the Fat Boy’s newest owner will, too. And that basic taillight out back? Hit the bricks. We swapped out both the taillight and the standing license plate bracket for a much more pristine look.

Air Cleaner 2So how can that new owner be you? Be sure to check out our Spring (On sale 3/8) issue to witness a visually pleasing upgrade and a sweet mount install on the Fat Boy, and purchase the coming issues to follow along with in-depth articles and close-up photos of the modifications. And how can this Fat Boy be yours? Subscribe to American Iron Magazine(877.693.3572) and you are automatically entered to win. So subscribe today. Or, you can enter with no purchase necessary at denniskirk.com.

 

 

 

Air CleanerTaillightTaillight2

 

 

 

 

 

WIN THIS HARLEY! Dennis Kirk Sweepstakes Update II

Sweeps-Bike-Before-right

This 2009 Fat Boy came to us used, but will leave a very different bike, possibly in your hands!

Back in January, we published the first in a series of post to keep you updated with the Dennis Kirk/American Iron Garage Fat Boy sweepstakes. We revealed a few pictures, spoke briefly about the bike, and gave you instructions on how you could be entered for a chance to win. To see the comprehensive install stories in relation to that post, pick up the Winter issue of American Iron Garage.

The game continues. We’re still going to tease you with suggestive glances at our Dennis Kirk/American Iron 2009 Fat Boy, inviting you in for more. We’ll hike the skirt up a little bit, in a risqué move to show off where the aforementioned Fat Boy started out. We’ve already spoken to the fact that making modifications to this bike felt bittersweet, as it came to us used and almost the perfect bike. So as to give you lot something to oogle, we teamed up with Dennis Kirk to give this bike away. But you may want to know a bit of its past before getting into anything serious. Here’s the chart from its run on the dynamometer, before anything came on or off.

Click the photo to enlarge.

Fat Boy Before Dyno

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Be sure to check out our Spring (On sale 3/8) issue to witness a visually pleasing upgrade and a sweet mount install on the Fat Boy, and purchase the coming issues to follow along with in-depth articles and close-up photos of the modifications. And how can this Fat Boy be yours? Subscribe to American Iron Magazine (877.693.3572) or Motorcycle Rides & Culture(877.693.3577) and you are automatically entered to win. So subscribe today. Or you can enter with no purchase necessary at denniskirk.com.

Kiss the old floorboards goodbye.

Kiss the old floorboards goodbye.

JayBrake forward controls give the Fat Boy a clean, modernized look.

JayBrake forward controls give the Fat Boy a clean, modernized look.

The Fat Boy ditches these old digs for a serious upgrade.

The Fat Boy ditches these old digs for a serious upgrade.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fresh dash for the Fat Boy. Very fresh.

Fresh Klock Werks dash for the Fat Boy. Very fresh.

2013 FLSTFB Fat Boy Lo Harley Motorcycle Review

2013-FLSTFB-Fat-Boy-Lo-Harley-1As i told you last month in my dyna Street Bob review, Harley-Davidson did the press launch of its new models a bit differently last year. Instead of having the event before Sturgis, H-D did it right after and took us on a spectacular, three-day ride through the Cascade Mountains and into Canada to test the new bikes. What a great way to do a bike review!

However, unlike the Street Bob, which got a major makeover for 2013, the Fat Boy Lo (MSRP $16,799-$19,499) is exactly the same as the 2012 version, except for the 110th anniversary colors and badging. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t a few things to go over. So, as I usually do, let’s start with my favorite part of a motorcycle, the powertrain. According to H-D specs, the 103″ (1690cc) counterbalanced motor puts out 97.5 ft-lbs. of torque at 3000 rpm (at the crank). What’s also the same (thankfully!) is the EFI system, which is still seamless in its operation, no matter the altitude, outside temperature, or any other variables that come up on a ride. H-D has this system dialed in nicely. And though the Dynas I test rode had an odd engine vibration (rough spot?) that showed up when the engine was between 2300 and 2900 rpm (it’s at its worst at 2500), that’s not an issue on the Softails. Though definitely on the quiet side, the exhaust note from the Lo’s over and under shotgun pipes has a nice sound. And as you can see, the mufflers and muffler shields have the same satin-chrome finish as the primary cover and some other components, while the header shields are flat black. There’s no news regarding the primary system and transmission, either. As always, clutch action is smooth and clean, and the Cruise Drive six-speed shifts smoothly with a clunk. And, yes, it’s still hard to find neutral most of the time when the tranny is hot and the bike is stopped. As for the bike’s overall gearing, H-D also has this dialed in. I always had plenty of power when I wanted it, and there are no annoying gaps between gears.

2013-FLSTFB-Fat-Boy-Lo-Harley-2As I said in the headline, the Fat Boy Lo is one of my favorite models. In fact, it’s the one I always ask for when I rent a bike for a tour and don’t need saddlebags. I enjoy riding this machine or its brother the standard Fat Boy. They’re essentially the same bike, but with slight changes made for those of short stature, such as yours truly (5’4″ with a 30″ inseam). The Lo has an unladen seat height of 26.4″ (670mm) and 4.8″ (122mm) of ground clearance. The standard Fat Boy has an unladen seat height of 27.1″ (690mm) and 5.1″ (130mm) of ground clearance. If you’re more interested in laden seat height stats, the Lo has a laden seat height of 24-1/4″ (616mm), the Fat Boy 25″ (635mm). While that half-inch or so doesn’t seem like a lot, it can get you flat-footed when you don’t have a lot of leg to work with. Especially when you add in the Lo’s narrow-cut seat.

So what’s it like to ride the Lo if you’re not a short stack? My 6’1″ assistant editor, Tyler, had this to say, “My height put my knees pretty high, up to my elbows, which shifted my weight back. That meant I wasn’t able to put as much weight as I would like on the floorboards. I felt like there was only pressure on my hands and butt. I had to work to keep my feet on the floorboards at highway speeds due to this seating position. However, the handlebars are comfortable for sport or distance cruising.”

As for the 0.3″ of ground clearance difference, that also doesn’t sound like much, but it does work against you a little in turns. I scraped the floorboards a bit sooner on the Lo than on a standard Fat Boy. However, since the floorboards will fold up a little, if I find myself scraping them when I need a bit more lean to get through a turn, I know I can take my foot out of the way and get that extra bit of leeway.

2013-FLSTFB-Fat-Boy-Lo-Harley-5As the Fat Boy Lo was last year, the 2013 bike is a pleasure to ride. However, there are two things I should mention as far as handling. First, in a strong crosswind you’ll find yourself fighting the front end a bit, just as you would on a Fat Boy thanks to those solid wheels. Of course, this usually only happens while riding across open plains or mountain tops. Second, if you’re coasting to a stop with your hands off the handlebars, the front end will make a slight headshake at around 35-40 mph. It’s definitely nothing to worry about and goes away when you drop below 30 or go above 45. More importantly, it doesn’t happen if you keep your hands on the bars. Another test I do when reviewing a bike is to see how easy it is to steer with just my body, sans my hands. The Fat Boy Lo, like the Fat Boy, is well-balanced. Though I definitely don’t suggest you do this, I have no problem guiding the machine though sweepers using just body inputs. Handling in the corners is always predictable and smooth on the Lo. The suspension and Dunlop H-D Series 17″ tires, a 140 up front and a 200 in the rear, work well. Of course, braking is excellent since there’s an ABS-controlled four-piston caliper up front and a two-piston unit out back. With ABS, you don’t have to worry about controlling how much brake you apply to stop as fast as possible without skidding. All you have to do is grab the lever and mash the pedal as hard as you can, and hold the bike straight. From 35 mph, the average stopping distance I got without trying hard was 56′.

2013-FLSTFB-Fat-Boy-Lo-Harley-3We should, of course, talk a bit about the only major change for 2013: the paintwork and commemorative solid bronze fuel tank badges. As you can see, the Fat Boy Lo is one of the 10 models available with the 110th anniversary colors and emblems. Each one is serialized and only 1,750 FLSTFB Anniversary models will be produced to ensure exclusivity. These bikes come with all available factory-installed options as standard equipment. Yup, that means the Smart Security System. However, you can’t get the Lo in any of the new Hard Candy Custom paints. Nor is it, like the Street Bob or 1200 Custom Sportster, part of the H-D1 Factory Customization program. If the 110th Anniversary Vintage Bronze/Anniversary Vintage Black color scheme is not your thing, the Lo is also available in Vivid Black, Candy Orange, and Black Denim.

Bottom line: the Fat Boy Lo is a great bike for riders with short shanks who love the look of the Fat Boy, ergo the Lo designation. If you’re not in this group, go for the standard Fat Boy. AIM

NEW BIKE REVIEW By Chris Maida

Story as published in the January 2013 issue of American Iron Magazine.