New Riders and Win a New Bobber
SHIFTING GEARS, by Buzz Kanter, Publisher
A growing number of younger riders wrenching, repairing, and riding motorcycles
I see a new wave of riders on the horizon. And that’s good news for the industry. A few years ago, most people we saw with or on motorcycles were over 40 years old. That wasn’t good news for the future of the motorcycle industry as too many riders are graying out and moving on. We need to replace them with the next generation of younger riders. Granted, we older riders tend to have higher disposable income for new motorcycles and parts than younger ones, but the future belongs to the youth. We are seeing a growing number of younger riders wrenching, repairing, and riding motorcycles. Think low-dollar Sportsters, custom Dynas, and the strong resurgence of popularity of FXRs.
I recently attended the Tennessee Motorcycles and Music Revival (TMMR) in Hurricane Mills, Tennessee (article on page 52), and was impressed by who and what I saw there. I was pleased to see so many young families there and impressed by the quality and diversity of custom bikes being ridden and displayed at this relatively new and growing event. Walking through the custom bike display (it wasn’t a contest, but more like a gathering of craftsmen—most of them under 35 years old) with show promoter Bill Dodge, I was blown away by the quality and creativity of the builds. Bill told me a little about each of the bikes and builders and what I heard was impressive. One way to predict the future of our sport is what the younger riders are building and riding. And, based on what Bill told me and what I saw with my own eyes, the future of the custom bike market is bright. Non-believers need only check out the fine details of these machines—both subtle and lavish—from the young builders at TMMR, many of them displaying their first or second custom builds. I was so excited by these motorcycles that we are sharing some of them in this issue.
This is all thanks to the efforts of people like event promoters such as TMMR’s Carrie Repp and Buck Shaw as well as Billy Lane and his hot and growing Sons of Speed boardtrack races in New Smyrna Beach, Florida, and just about anything Roland Sands or Jody Perewitz is involved in. We are seeing more of these grass roots events springing up around the country with a younger, hipper vibe. There are more, and they are all great for the sport and great for the industry.
Print Is Not Dead! Our 2020 Plans
While the number of print motorcycle magazines continues to shrink, we at our privately owned and published TAM Communications are holding our own and bucking the trend going into 2020. We are still publishing 13 great issues a year of American Iron Magazine. We are rebranding our all-tech and DIY Garage Build back to the original American Iron Garage with four issues a year. Our best-selling American Iron Salute issue will be back. And after a long hiatus, we are seriously considering bringing back our old Indian Motorcycle Illustrated as an annual newsstand-only special issue.
Whoever said print is dead isn’t paying attention to our magazines or our active and engaged readers like you! With that in mind, I’d like to remind everyone that we can’t do what we do without your support. And that means subscribing for yourself as well as for any and all of your friends who would enjoy what we do here.
Win A Free Motorcycle—Really!
This is the last issue of the year. If you have not yet subscribed to this magazine, what the heck are you waiting for? Subscribers get all 13 great issues a year (yes, we still publish every four weeks) for only $29.97 (SAVING YOU $73.90 A YEAR!) and all US subscribers are entered to win a free new Indian Scout Bobber! Someone will win it; might it be you? But you must act quickly, as we are drawing the bike winner the end of December. Subscribe now—sign up at www.AIMag.com or call 877/693-3572.
Ride safe, ride smart, have fun.
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