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American-V: Contents 46

Issue Forty-Six

4: NEWS / NEW PRODUCTS 14: REVIEWS Harley Heated Clothing Dual Thermostat, Rollastand wheel cleaner, Jimi Cap and “The Essential Buyer’s Guide: Harley-Davison Big Twins”.

18: 2011 Harley-Davidson FXS Blackline

New generation Softail and future classic, or a cynical example of parts bin engineering? First impressions can’t always be relied upon.

27: “Customising, culture & harley-davidson” We take a look round the new exhibition at Manchester’s Museum of Science and Industry.

31: Fat Tracker

Parts bin engineering within a dealership makes for a bike that’s much more than the sum of its parts.

37: 1974 Police FL

Team America: World Police without strings: a resurrected Shovel from Sierra Leone.


The changing of the lard, as the Fat Bob bagger is replaced by a similarly appointed Fat Boy for 2011.

48: GLIDIATOR What the world has been waiting ten years for:

no, not the death of Bin Laden, although we’re not complaining, but a VLHR? A VRLT? A V-Rod Bagger!



Features Editor:

Annual Subscriptions: Six issues, inc Patch UK: £29.70 EU: £44.10 RoW Zone 1: £46.26 RoW Zone 2: £51.30 (all include postage)

Staff Writer: Amanda Wright Contributors this issue: Andy Malham, Roger Christian, Paul Francis, Russell Cruwe. Proof reader: Amanda’s back in the chair, rocking backwards and forwards. Design: Mini Ha-Ha and Erika McAston All editorial enquiries to: Advertising Sales: Andy Fraser 01778 392054 Advertising Production: Sue Ward: 01778 392405 Trade Sales: Natalie Cole: 01778 392404

Published by American-V, PO Box 336, Crewe, Cheshire, CW2 7WY. Tel: 0207 993 8002 Printed in the UK by Warners (Midlands) PLC, Bourne. Distribution by: Warners Group Publications Plc West Street, Bourne, Lincolnshire, PE10 9PH Tel: 01778 391135 Copyright 2011 American-V. TFFT

I’m desperate to start working with amateurs again, having been completely disillusioned by working with professionals.

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5 2: BIG INCH FAT BOBS We know what a difference the 103 conversion made to

the 96-inch Twin Cam in our Fat Bob, but how about 110? How about a 120? How about a change of underwear?

5 9: PROJECT ROAD KING What started out as a quick tidy up revealed problems

beyond Rich’s worst nightmares. Nothing that can’t be fixed, of course, ’cos it’s a Harley.

6 2: LONG TERM VISION Run-in and raring to go: anywhere, anytime and in unprecedented comfort.

6 6: SYCAMORE CUSTOM SHOW The first dealer show of the year (I think) warranted a trip cross-county to blow away the cobwebs.

6 8: PROJECT VICTORY Not a huge amount of actual progress, but plenty of

things starting to firm up: just finish writing this issue and get back to it.

72: WALKING THE BIG DOGS I’ll bet that right about now, you’ll be wondering whether we’ve heard about Big Dog closing their doors? Course we have, but you can still buy ’em, so we’ll still ride ’em.

80: BATTISTINI VENTI Part anniversary celebration for the Batt Boyz, part basis for a production bike: how does it stack up?

84: MAINZ 2011 Custom Chrome Europe’s spring show drags them all in from across Europe, and what a bumper crop this year!

90: EVENTS CALENDAR 95: Classified Ad pages 98: RIGHTEOUS BROTHERS There goes the neighbourhood.

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American-V # ONE


Polaris AcquireS Indian

Indian probably could have picked a better time to restart production than right at the heart of a massive downturn in the US economy, but you can’t predict these things as accurately as you might like. And, of course, you don’t just go into work one day and decide to put motorcycles on showroom floors by the end of the week: these things take years, and it has taken years to re-engineer the PowerPlus engine that they inherited from the Gilroy operation. Why? Because one of the terms of awarding the Indian name to the team that set up in Gilroy was that they had to develop their own engine within a certain amount of time, and it was launched before it was ready ... see previous paragraph. The doom-mongers will have it that Indian’s curse has got them again; the neo-nationalists will blame the Anglo-Italian investment company headed by Stephen Julius; and a couple of businesses that have laid claim to the ‘new’ PowerPlus and insist that they’ve fixed its problems, will raise a couple of fingers towards Kings Mountain and tell anyone who’ll listen where the latest Indian Motorcycle Company went wrong. Except it didn’t go wrong. Indian was acquired, having been resurrected as a brand by the Stellican/Novastor investment groups whose specific goal was to do precisely that, and who have now found the perfect partner to take things forward to the next level. Indian is now in the safest pair of hands that it could possibly hope for: an American manufacturing company that has a broad product base, no debts to speak of, already produces Victory motorcycles – a brand that it created from nothing, including developing an original engine – and that has demonstrated a huge commitment to the motorcycle sector. Polaris will continue the Indian brand as a wholly separate range – early releases state that Polaris will run Indian as an “autonomous business unit” – which doesn’t just bode well for Indian, but can only be to Victory’s advantage as well. It will take a company with Polaris’ reputation and acumen to revive confidence in Indian, and Indian models sharing showroom floors with Victory, whose product range doesn’t It has been an eventful couple of months and I thought long and hard about how we should run the news of Big Dog Motorcycles’ demise, especially having laid out an upbeat cover just days after returning from riding three-quarters of the EU hologated models, and a few days before the vultures started circling. It all got ugly very quickly, thanks in part to the way the news broke on Cyril Huze’ blog, and the ability of everyone and their dog (no pun intended) to comment on it, regardless of any inside knowlege


really compete with Indian despite both being in the same market sector, has huge synergy. And it couldn’t have come at a better time for some serious flag-waving in the US next year: Indian’s 110th Anniversary of the original company going into production, and Victory’s 15th. “We are excited to be part of the revitalization of a quintessentially American brand,” said Scott Wine, CEO of Polaris Industries Inc. “Indian built America’s first motorcycle. With our technology and vision, we are confident we will deliver the classic Indian motorcycle, enhanced by the quality and performance for which Polaris and Victory are known.” “We are delighted to have reached an agreement with Polaris. Polaris will utilize its well-known strengths in engineering, manufacturing, and distribution to complete the mission we undertook upon re-launching the brand in 2006: harness the enormous potential of the Indian brand,” said Stephen Julius, chairman of Indian and managing director of Stellican. “Polaris is the most logical owner of Indian Motorcycle. Indian’s heritage brand will allow Polaris to aggressively compete across an expanded spectrum of the motorcycle market.” And Stellican’s investment partner, Novator Partners’ founder, Thor Bjorgolfsson, an avid motorcycle enthusiast, added “After a troubled past, our goal was to bring the legendary Indian bikes back on the roads. The initial phase of that project is done and now our great partners at Polaris will carry on the work to realize the full potential of this classic American brand.” Design, engineering and manufacturing will move from Kings Mountain, North Carolina, to Polaris’ facility at Spirit Lake, Iowa, which could hardly be more appropriately named. Indian are back, and I look forward to a landmark model to celebrate that union: anyone else want a new Vindian? /

or personal agenda, which serves to undermine the whole premise of the internet and the freedoms it affords – which isn’t an attack on Cyril, who was instrumental in flushing the story out, but could be contrued as such on some of those repondants whose ill-informed or just plain vitriolic comments don’t contribute to the wider debate. It turned into a witch hunt, with the detractors rounding on the lack of official comment from Big Dog Motorcycles management as an indication of their being guilty of a range of things, from

abdicating their responsibilities to failing to move with the times, with a significant number of correspondents seizing on the opportunity to have a pop at the big buck custom bike industry. All comments that would previously have been made among friends at the end of a bar, through the bottom of a beer glass, with the benefit of body language and voice intonation to give the gathered audience an opportunity to evaluate the speaker’s argument, based on their authority, information and state of inebriation.

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Big Dog Motorcycles have closed their doors after more than fifteen years as America’s most promising small scale oem manufacturer. The company who took the best that the American aftermarket and performance industry had to offer, and built it into as close to a bespoke motorcycle as any mass producer has yet managed – and 25,000+ motorcycles over its lifetime makes them worthy of that title – and it looks as though that partnership with reputable businesses has paid off, at least as far as owners are concerned, because those companies are making those parts that they could only previously supply through BDM available to Big Dog owners, and in the case of S&S – who supplied the engines in recent years – are honouring the warranty. George Smith Jr, S&S President, said “I’m certainly sad to see a good customer like BDM close their doors, but I feel that we need to shoulder the responsibility, and make sure the end customer gets a square deal. I suppose we could just look the other way, but I won’t do that. After all, these are S&S engines. We built them and we’re going to stand behind them!”. S&S also provide a full range of performance parts for Big Dog, as well as original equipment to make sure they’ll be able to stay on the right side of all legal requirements, regarding emissions. S&S supporting the warranty of the engines will boost the confidence of current and prospective Big Dog owners who could capitalise on the news that there is inventory available at a discounted price. Of course S&S will also be keen to make sure they don’t lose a potential market for their own services, and 25,000+ motorcycles out there looking for service parts isn’t to be sniffed at: they’ve put up a webpage specifically dealing with Big Dog business, and will undertake repair work at any S&S dealer or S&S’ own Remanufacturing service, which carries a full one year warranty of its own. Whether deliberately or not, S&S’ public statement – including within it a tacit endorsement of BDM – also keeps the door open for Big Dog’s return in a new form without being greeted by angry warranty claimants, but then that’s the other benefit of dealing with quality suppliers: warranty claims should be minimal. For now, though, BDM’s last employees have moved over the road to BDM Performance Parts, whose website is now up, providing parts for Big Dogs and other bikes, and including a That’s sadly missing in an online world that prides itself on interactivity, but in the absence of personal risk – you can’t get punched on the nose via broadband – speculation gets wilder, accusation more vitriolic and it becomes harder to mount a defence knowing that once you’ve broken cover, you’ll have to counter every escalation or appear to have lost an argument that will never go away, cropping up on search engines for years to come. Those who have the most time on their hands will always win, regardless of whether they are

Pitbull rolling chassis kit that BDM considered in February as part of their survival strategy, complete with the model’s original 23-inch front and 20-inch rear wheels from Millennium Machine and Tool and Avon tyres. Originally carrying a RRP of $5,995, it’s currently a special deal including full MSO at $3,995 ‘while supplies last’. The Pitbull is the sole entry in the ‘Rolling Chassis Kits’ section which could suggest a wider range in the future, and with the Pitbull listing at $26,900 when BDM closed, there’s a lot of leeway to pick your drive train, controls, electrics and paint. There are obviously savings to be made there, but remember that while BDM were often attacked for their prices, no-one complained about the quality; but then with recent engines arriving pre-assembled from S&S, post-2005 drive trains being a special Synchronous Belt Drive and DD6 RSD gearbox from Baker, Performance Machine brakes, Supertrapp exhausts and Medallion instruments, the main components are beyond reproach. We’ll watch with interest to see how Big Dog Motorcycle’s story continues to develop ... wonder if Polaris fancy a custom motorcycle division?

HARLEYDAVIDSON OFFER AN EXTRA £1000 TRADEIN WITH THE “RIDE TO DECIDE” PROMOTION THROUGH MAY Keen to broaden their appeal to new buyers, HarleyDavidson UK are offering up to an extra £1,000 against a new Harley when trading in a competitor bike. It is being run in conjunction with their online testride booking system, where riders who have held a full motorcycle license for at least twelve months can take out the bike of their choice for an hour, subject to local availability or a willingness to travel, and is aimed at putting new bums in seats, and letting the bike sell itself. New models like the FortyEight, XR1200X and VRod Muscle, and the dark custom range, have been instrumental in attracting a wider audience, challenging the preconceptions of nonHarley riders using the widest range of models that HarleyDavidson has offered in a single year, while the tradein offer will make them more affordable. Tradein values will be determined by the bikes you’re trading and the new model selected  which excludes the 883 Iron, the new XL1200 Custom and FXS Blackline, and CVO models

right or not, because they don’t have to justify their position and can say what they like without fear of repercussion: they’ve got to go a long way to fall foul of libel laws because opinions don’t count, and you can hold strong opinions without straying into statements of fact, but none of it actually furthers the debate: quite the opposite. And while online debate rages, the real story is taking shape behind closed doors and I don’t believe that it has played out yet. Big Dog could yet come back with models that were already adjusting to the new market conditions, but they would be foolish to go public with that before they were good and ready. We’ll know when they’re ready to tell us, and in the meantime, a Pitbull rolling chassis for $4k is a tempting thought. On an unrelated note, I’m very excited by the news from Polaris: the opportunities created by Indian’s tradition and Victory’s engineering are tantalising: next year should be very interesting. Andy

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BIO Diverse

Here’s a thing to keep you awake at night. I’m not absolutely sure why I’m telling you this, because there’s damn all we can do about it currently, but it’s important to be aware of it. If you’ve got a carburettor, you will know that fuel left in the float bowl goes off, but do you know why? Or indeed why fuel doesn’t seem to be as powerful as it once was? Apparently it’s because of a box-ticking exercise in the EU to increase the uptake of renewable fuels across Europe as part of the campaign to slow climate change. Hang on a second ... isn’t that Tooty from Thundercity sitting on that Triumph Thunderbird? If, like me, you thought that And former Harley stunt rider Craig Jones on the Duke? And that’s the guy who presented meant a few wind farms instead of the British Biker Build-Off – professional Lancastrian: Steve Berry. a Power Station, I’ve got news for What’s going on? you: it means that petrol has about Simple enough: there’s going to be a new TV show focusing on motorcycles in the UK, 5% ethanol – bio fuel – in it and and these guys will be presenting it. there’s no obligation to say so at It’s in production now and will deal with all aspects of bikes and biking, in a magazine the pump if it’s less than 5%. format show that is due to air in Autumn 2011. Expect plenty of banter between the three Big deal? Err, yes. hosts and their motorcycling celebrity guests as they take a sideways look at anything Ethanol is hygroscopic – it attracts from classic Cafe Racers to 200hp Sportbikes, custom shows to adventure sports, with a water – and so also contains diversion or two into the extreme end of motorcycle control. anti-corrosion components, and And there’s going to be plenty of opportunity to interact with the show from the outset. also affects the volatility of the The first chance you’ll have to get a feel of it will be at the California Dreamin’ show in fuel, which can be beneficial for Bournemouth, where they will be opening the show – assuming you didn’t catch them at the cold starts but can cause vapour BMF – but they will also have an on-line presence on Facebook and Twitter, managed by lock and hot starting issues on Alastair Walker who used to run Carole Nash’s Inside Bikes web magazine. susceptible vehicles – generally Hopefully, next time you see Tooty he’ll be on a Victory or a custom Harley, but that’s those with a mechanical fuel pump, not as important as a mainstream TV show done properly introducing motorcycling to the so we’re okay with gravity feed. missing generations lost to the hot hatchback. This fuel is known as E5. And, in 2013, it’s going to rise to 10% Ethanol, or E10, and the Federation of British Historic Vehicle Clubs are very concerned about the implications for older vehicles, not least because it’s not recommended for a number of materials found in older vehicles’ In fairness, this is old news except we didn’t mention it when it first fuel systems, like zinc, brass, came through, because the series start was so far away and we didn’t copper and tin-coated steel, and want to peak too early. those are just the metals. It’s not Racing specialist, Ian McLeod, who has worked with Harris Performance especially happy with seal materials for ten years and was heavily involved in developing the race kit for the like neoprene and urethane rubber inaugural series last year, is now Harley’s race series manager with a either, or polyurethane, some nylons brief to promote the series to a wider audience, while maintaining the or cork. high levels of support from the Harley-Davidson UK dealer network. In terms of our American He’s keen to attract more entries from individual riders, and to improve motorcycles, we’re better off than the overall experience for spectators. many because the EU is actually Harris are still heavily involved in the series and have been working on playing catch-up with America, new rearsets, oil pipes and captive wheel adjusters, which will join crash protectors and Dunlop wet weather who’ve been using it for years and tyres as additions for the 2011 series, which will increase from seven races at five events, to nine races at who, with Brazil, produces 88% of seven, including Donington Park, Thruxton and Snetterton for the first time. the world’s ethanol. “I’m delighted to be working with Harley-Davidson to help to push this race series to the next level this year,” In the US, E10 is considered a low says Ian. “I’ve been heavily involved with this project since inception and I’m really passionate about what it can blend and Ford, Chrysler and GM offer – great fun and cost-effective racing with an attractive prize fund and a fantastic sense of community. are producing cars that they will “Last year was limited to dealer-supported entries only, but there has been a huge amount of interest from run on anything from pure gasoline individual riders for this year, showing that there is great scope for growing the series this year. The cost-effectiveness right up to E85, although apparently of the series is a major draw, as is the fun environment that Harley-Davidson supports within the paddock.” no-one thought to mention it “We’re delighted to have Ian on board for 2011” says Harley-Davidson UK & Ireland Marketing Manager, to their buyers so they’ve been Jessica Tideswell. “2010 was a huge success and the momentum seems to be building already ahead of this running them on regular gas. season. For that reason, we needed somebody that could focus purely on the race series and Ian was the So, now you know: no need to perfect candidate. He knows the bike and championship inside out and already has great relationships with the worry about your Harley, but your dealers, riders and everybody else involved so we’re looking forward to the season ahead.” Moggie Thou ... hmmm.




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Warr's Ad_American_V_May/June_2011_Warr's Ad_American_V_May/June_2011 06/04/2011 09:00 Page 1

s e is Ac st m e u ’t th ug on at A D r’s th 8 ar -2 W th 25

Warr’s ‘Tracker’ Customised Harley-Davidson Street Bob

Warr’s - Serving the Harley enthusiast since 1924 Europe’s oldest dealership +44 (0)20 7736 2934 © H-D 2011. Harley, Harley-Davidson and the Bar & Shield logo are among the trademarks of H-D Michigan, LLC.

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American-V # ONE American-V


» cable guy

With a reputation for their ’bars, who better than Burly Brand to put together a full cable kit to make your life easier when it comes to fitting them. Including black braided steel brake lines, extended clutch and throttle cables and all necessary wiring, they are available for ’97-’11 Sportster (12˝-16˝ Narrow Bottom Apes), ’98-’11 Dyna (12˝-16˝ Apes), ’00-’10 Softail (14˝-18˝ Gorilla Apes) and ’08-’11 Touring (13˝ Apes).

monster roUnd

Like its cousin the Monster Oval, the new Monster Round produces that deep and mellow rumble that’s winning the hearts and minds of touring riders who put in the long distance miles. Perfect for enjoying your stereo on the highway, the Monster Round features blue proof technology and a CNC machined billet end-cap for an impeccable appearance. It’s also just the right fit for CVO models with extended saddlebag skirts.

You’d think that LEDs were a new invention, judging by the speed of development at the moment, but they’ve been around for ages. Not like this, though. They’ve made Halogen look like a standard filament bulb, and have even leapfrogged the emerging HID technology before it got established. We’re in a transitional phase at the moment, and the high-tech solutions offered by Harley and Custom Chrome but they don’t look comfortable in a classic circular seven inch lens, which is where – for my money – Kuryakyn have got it right. This combination of head and driving lamps put together by Kuryakyn still manage to look pretty conventional but deliver vastly better results. The driving lamps either side of the multi-faceted headlamp are close to losing that traditional style but if they are too offensive, Kuryakyn have got a range of alternatives, albeit based round conventional bulbs. But then, to be fair, the reason we have driving lights in the first place is to turn night into day, and the LED headlamp will do that by itself. The big advantages are the amount, spread and colour of the light – the difference is astonishing with good contrast across a wider angle to help pick out hazards – but it doesn’t stop there. It uses a lot less power than a conventional bulb, doesn’t require the ‘ballast’ that you’d need for an HID, doesn’t generate a significant amount of heat and lasts up to 50 times longer than a normal bulb and isn’t susceptible to vibration. There is a downside: they don’t come cheap – about twenty times as much as a conventional bulb – but knowing that it’ll be less than half the price of normal bulbs over its lifetime (and that its eventual replacement will probably cost less than half as much, a long time into the future) will soften the initial blow, and the first ride at night will do the rest.


True high performance front suspension has finally made its way to the HD Touring line. Progressive Suspension’s state of the art Monotube Fork Kit represents the pinnacle of bagger front end handling. High performance speciality components replace the traditional open bath damping found in Harley-Davidson forks. The kit features a set of gas charged Monotube dampers and a set of custom tuned fork springs. Monotube style damping improves ride comfort, resistance to front brake dive as well as improving front end stability, cornering and bottoming control. The kit fits 1997 though 2010 HD Touring model forks, and replaces all of the internal parts, converting dual damper rod, and the combination damper rod and cartridge forks found on 2002‑05 models, to true high performance Monotube damping! No modifications are required and install is relatively simple. Check it out on their website, or contact your local Progressive Suspension dealer for more information.


Dial M for Medallion Designed and built in Spring Lake, Michigan by Medallion Instrumentation Systems these full sets of analogue dials will transform the cockpit of your Electra Glide to suit your taste: classic, performance or lifestyle, all with LED backlit graphics and illuminated pointers behind anti-fog, UV stable lenses. The kit includes a speedometer, tachometer with multi-function LCD display, oil pressure, oil temperature – in place of the factory air temperature and comes the necessary sensor and wire, fuel gauge and voltmeter. The auto-dimming multi-function LCD panel displays gear positions from 1-6, low fuel, battery and cruise, and has a one-time programmable odometer, twin trips and service reminder, while shift-up, ABS, engine light, and security Telltales are hidden in dial face itself. They are designed to replace stock equipment and should take two hours or less to install, using easy to follow instructions.


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TAKING IT TO THE NEXT LEVEL Since 2003 we’ve been supplying industry-leading  aftermarket parts and accessories to distributors and  dealers across Europe. As part of the Motorsport  Aftermarket Group, our family of companies includes  some of the world’s top brands, all proven to  transform your ride. At our website you have details  ������������������������������������������������������ e-catalogue section and a dealer locator to quickly  ������������������������������ MAG Europe Ltd Unit 2 Oakden Drive, Denton, Manchester, M34 2QN, UK Office: +44 (0)161 337 4390 Fax: +44 (0)161 337 4395 Email: Web:

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motogadget m-Relay+

Looking very much like the simple m-Relay which controls high amp devices like headlamps with low amp switching, the m-Relay+ is altogether more sophisticated, taking control of a bike’s indicators. First up, you can control how they work by the length of time you hold the button. A quick jab will repeat three times – ideal for lane changing – longer will give you ten repeats, for turning, and longer still will keep it flashing until you cancel, and a hazard light function by pressing both indicators at the same time. Simple stuff: all useful, and better still it will switch any wattage of bulb, so you can fit LEDs or normal filament bulbs and anything in between, and in any combination without a load balancer and wondering what the flash rate will be. It’s all contained within a small, lightweight aluminium housing secured by an M3 thread but is also small and light enough to be tied into the bike’s main harness, and the electronics are completely waterproof, vibration proof and protected from electrical overload


And all this talk of low ampage switching brings us to the signature piece of issue 44’s cover bike: a piece of perfectly machined billet 7075 that fills the hole where the full harness would ordinarily exit from a late model Dyna frame. Well, having reduced the wiring and re-route what remains you’ve got to do something with it, and this would still be the coolest even if there were alternatives out there.

Rocket Bobs HAS got shaved nuts

Shaved Nuts for 49mm Harley-Davidson forks, that is, obviously – which explains the bloody awful English – so suitable for Mk2 2006-on Dynas and those V-Rods that use their forks the right-way-up. Made from billet 7075 T6 aluminium, these are direct replacements for the OEM cast steel units, with a 12mm socket head mount that his hidden with a seamless cap piece once fitted. “The last word in finishing detail for your front end”, they are available in raw, polished or anodised finish. Each kit is supplied with O-rings and sealant and prices start from £42.95.

GripAce Hidden Switch

Exile Cycles have been appointed the exclusive European Distributor for the super-clean GripAce Hidden Switch System. This system consists of a slim rubber strip with 4 easy-to-use buttons that can be mounted almost anywhere, including a set of grips that are machined to accept them. The switches send a digital signal through a single wire to a small module that would typically be hidden under your tank or seat, and not only do the buttons operate right and left turnsignals, horn and a dipswitch, but if you hold two of them together, they will operate your starter. The other two buttons, when held together, will operate an additional circuit should you have other electrical components on your ride. Basically, one neat little strip to replace all of the bulky switchgear on your bike! The Hidden Switch System sells for $399, and Exile Cycles are accepting dealer applications – currently offering an introductory ‘buy 4 get 1 free’ deal to stocking dealers! Exile Cycles also offers grips that are machined to accept the Hidden Switch System, complete with a matching grip for the throttle. The rubber version sells for $49/pair, while the knurled billet aluminum grips are $149 in satin finish, $159 polished and $169 in sharp black anodize.

S&S Power tune headers for tourers

Much is made of the power-giving properties of mufflers, but there’s a lot to be said for giving the exhaust gases the best possible start in life: getting them out of the head as quickly as possible, and away. And for that reason, S&S have come up with their Power Tune headers, which they’ve measured as giving an extra 8hp to a motor compared to the stock headers. They bear an uncanny resemblance to the new headers on then 2009-on FLs, but then they share a common goal of routing the rear exhaust away from the pillion rider, and the resulting line differs only from the current FL in that both pipes retain their original shape when they come together and separate again as the front header runs off beneath the gearbox to feed the primary side muffler. What is less obvious, is that the two pipes do have a hidden crossover, which is beneficial to real world, on-road power. With heatshields that provide 220-degree coverage they will resist blueing, and have O2 sensor ports in the stock locations, which can be blocked with the supplied bungs if they are not required, and they come with the necessary hardware to mount the cross-over. Power Tune heads are compatible with all slip-on mufflers that are designed for stock headers. Zod 752109: S&S Power Tune headers for 1995-2008 FLH/FLT models Zod 752110: S&S Power Tune headers for 2009-on FLH/FLT models

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3/5/11 14:11:19


new lamps for old


No, I’ve no idea which one the genie is in, but I do know that “it’s behind you” ... sorry. Dead simple: a 12v twin filament bulb serving as stop, tail and number plate illumination, in black on a black number plate bracket, in one of three sizes, each retailing at £45. Small (Zod 161283) is an inch across the lens and has a chrome bevel, medium (Zod 161284) is 1½ with a chrome bezel and large (Zod 161285) is 21⁄8 with a satin finish bezel

LED FROM THE REAR You can have too much choice, y’know, although I daresay this rash of bolton E-marked LED taillights will be extremely popular with those who want to be conspicuous from the back, and there should be a taillight in this lot that will suit their tastes, or the theme of their bike, in either the £100 ‘Sunray’ or £116 ‘Cluster’ form. They’re 33% lower than a stock taillight, have all the benefits of long-life and high visibility and will bolt straight onto most stock Harleys, except the Deuce, V-Rod, anything with Harley’s Sparto copy or with indicator/taillights ... or the tombstone on the Heritage Softail.

FAT PIG Footrests Rocket Bobs are working through an apparently inexhaustible supply of billet 7075, and a result of that are these: 42mm footpegs with a mini rubber isolator. They are machined from solid and available in raw at £52.50 apiece, or hard anodized in black, as shown for £62.50. They can supply contrast cut as well on demand for an additional cost. And matching them, but not quite so fat, are the billet shifter pegs, which shows the raw finish: 7075 is a very hardwearing, high finish aluminium.

RSD Filler Caps We never get through a news page without something from Roland Sands, and this one’s no exception. Combining retro styling with modern materials and production techniques, these fuel caps add a crowning glory to anything that already bears his stamp, but can equally well stand alone: form, function, style and class in a single, simple package. Four styles are available in three finishes; chrome plated, black anodized with contrast cut machining and ‘Black Ops’, a two-tone black finish.

Tired of getting your hands dirty when dumping the used out at service time? Help is at hand: put those greasy spanners down and listen-up.

oil drain 1 oil drain 2 A simple little device from Bender Cycle that replaces the drain plug with something like a big bleed nipple off a brake: put a hose over the end of the new drain bolt and release the ‘nipple’ for want of a better word, and the oil comes out of the end of a clean tube into a stable tin, rather than what is immediately underneath it, which varies from bike to bike. Close the plug and you’re ready for a fresh oil fill. Available in black (920529) or silver (920528) anodized aluminum to match you preference.

A more sophisticated system is the Stahlbus oil drain valve, which has an automatic element to it. Again, you replace the drain plug with the new device, but with this one you have a cap covering the new drain to keep the inside clean, and having removed that you insert a quick release hose connector. When that locks into position, an internal valve opens and the oil flows out, closing again when the connector is removed.

In both cases, the resulting drain hole will be smaller than usual and the oil flow slower, but it can be left unattended – as long as you’ve got a big enough bucket.


AmV46.News.indd 12

04/05/2011 15:45

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The Essential Buying Guide: Harley-Davidson Big Twins Peter Henshaw £9.99 ISBN: 978-1-845843-03-8 One of a series of books that covers a much broader range of bikes than just HarleyDavidson, and that shows its generic nature over and over again. The author’s background is in motorcycle touring, which comes across strongly in his preference for FLH/T models, but doesn’t explain his singling out the Road Glide as the generic model: a bike that is the most elusive of all Harley tourers on these shores. Riddled with material errors, misleading in the presentation of much of its information, it falls into the trap of putting someone who has a solid reputation for an accurate story into a world that they have little knowledge of, or empathy with, and I suspect that responsibility for the confusion this creates is shared between the format, the author and the editor. Format-wise, these are bits like the use of a bullet symbol to represents £1.00 so that the reader can read it as £ or €1.20 or $1.50 at the prevailing price list and exchange rate. It’s not bad enough that it

Dual ControL heated clothing Thermostat 98541-04V

The final piece to the jigsaw, this little device is – as far as I am concerned – an essential element of the heated jacket and gloves combination we’ve been trying out, resolving the issues of balancing the ambient heat of the gloves and sauna heat of the jacket, and while there are ways in which it could be improved, it is such a welcome addition to the ensemble that you can forgive it most things. There is a single thermostat version available which would work well-enough to control the jacket in isolation, as long as you have the Y-cable to power the gloves separately – I can’t see your hands ever overheating – but this one serves as a splitter as well as a dual controller.


pre-supposes the book has international merit, which is doubtful, but the list of parts chosen to illustrate the cost of ownership are utterly irrelevant, and misleading. There’s also a spurious percentage figure that crops up at the end of the section outlining the different model families, which uses a 2000 model Road King as a baseline, at 100% and then gives wildly inaccurate percentages for values of other models based upon it, so a 2000 Ultra is 120%, a Fat Boy of indeterminate age is 104% and an equally vague Wide Glide 102% – did I mention that this book purports to cover Big Twins from the launch of the Evo in 1984 to the present day. There are chapters that look like they’ve been pulled from other books in the range and tweaked to fit the Harley pattern, but which frankly don’t: they offer sage advice in places, but some stuff just doesn’t translate. A failure to understand the purpose of the jiffy stand explains the suggestion that you take a paddock stand or jack with you – incidentally, an engine stand or a bike lift are what you should take if you want to lift the bike, but you can lean Harleys over on the sidestand to lift each wheel off the ground in turn: it is the approved method. The worst culprit is the test ride bit: no-one in their right mind is going to let you take their pride and joy out for a test ride, not even using your own transport as security – not least because there’s no guarantee it is yours – and it makes no mention at all of the insurance implications, which is irresponsible. In terms of the author’s direct knowledge, in warning against fake investment opportunities he appears to be unaware that the sought after limited editions are numbered, thinks that the Dyna is ‘a slightly different frame’ compared to the FXR and confuses the switch to forged junctions on the frame from stamping with the introduction of the tighter headstock rather than the switch from the FXR. He picks the most peculiar models as his representative sub-sample, and has an apparent fixation with ex-police models, while admitting they’re uncommon in the UK. I could go on, but it’s pointless and too time consuming.

There’s great irony in putting a Cross Bones next to the statement that Softail model seat heights don’t exceed 700mm, which I’ll attribute to an editing error, but the laugh-out-loud moment is when rubbishing the brakes, and the statement that Harris brakes are a favourite – which could be a typo or an ill-informed correction by someone who hasn’t heard of Harrison. The list of shortcomings is too numerous to run through here, but I’ll save my main criticism for the section at the back that focuses on community – which lists some countries where HOG has a presence, some of the independent riders clubs, some independent specialists and ‘a very small selection of books’. Great for those listed, but ultimately pointless in conveying an true picture. But not as bad as the “17 Vital statistics – essential data at your fingertips” which gives seven spurious specifications from three different bikes in an apparent attempt to inform but which says less than nothing; an incomplete précis of technology and model introductions since 1984; and the same for VIN model codes, covering FXR and FL models only. In all, a book I couldn’t recommend, with the possible exception of the chapter that helps you the ability to score the bike you’re looking at buying on a scale of 1 to 4 across thirty-six topics, and that’s only as long as you take the explanatory text with a pinch of salt. And even then I’d pick the layout to pieces for misleading images turning what should be a four-page checklist into twenty-pages of clutter that makes it hard to draw a quick conclusion. In fairness it’s trying to do too much in too short a space, and Peter Henshaw is not the right person to be writing it because he just doesn’t get it at any level below the touring experience. This needs to be three books at this size and pagination – FXR/Dyna, Softail and Tourers – and written by someone with an intimate knowledge of the bikes, who can inform and empathise with both prospective Harley buyers and those who are looking at upgrading or changing from within the Harley family. And no, I’m not pitching for the job. / Andy

The possible improvements inform the detail of the test, so without further ado ... There is no means of identifying which rotary dial controls what, and bearing in mind the lines are colour-coded, that’s is a major omission. One knob is a slightly lighter shade of grey, but you can barely tell in daylight, and a winter night is when you’ll need it. And it would benefit from having a number of click stops on the dial so that you could set the stat at a known level and be confident that it would stay there when you wrestled it back onto your belt, using the handy pouch with belt clip, or into a pocket. Those two improvements would make a massive difference – as would an overall reduction in the amout of wire you’ve got to tuck away somewhere – but both are easily solved with a few dabs of Tippex or similar: to

mark the knob that correspond with the white tagged lead, and the heat sweet spot on each. Still, however, an essential componant of the heated clothing range. / Andy

AmV46.Reviews.indd 14

04/05/2011 15:46

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American-V # ONE


JIMI Cap $12 S to XL in a range of colours; or XS in black. Having a bad hair day? Or just a ‘helmet hair’ day, which is frequently worse!


RS1: Bikes upto 500lbs £35.00 + delivery RS2: Heavyweights £39.99 + delivery UK Distributor: The bane of any bike owner’s cleaning regime is the wheels, whether fiddly spokes or, increasingly, unprotected aluminium. Unless you’ve got a bench or a decent lift, it’s a hand and knees job with lots of getting up and down rolling a 600lb motorcycle backwards and forwards to get to the right part of the wheel.


Help is at hand with this simple cap that has been created for occupational and sports use, but which is an interesting alternative to learning how to create one out of your seamless neck tube. With the main body made from Supplex-Lycra – a material that wicks away moisture, controlling sweat – and optionally topped-off with mesh, it’s exceptionally comfortable and practical: in fact it’s all-day comfortable, indoors and out, even if it did mean Amanda insisted on calling me ‘Chef’ all day. But it was as a helmet ‘comfort liner’ that it interested me and, after some playing, it came through all tests with flying colours. Thin enough to fit between the snug lining of the Davida and my head – preventing a problem I sometimes have, of its leather lining gripping my hot forehead – it has also doubled the comfortable range of the closefitting Dammtrax ‘Vintage Rocketeer’, which is tight at my right temple but is somehow lessened by the extra layer: the trick in both cases is to make sure the thicker elasticated edge of the cap sits below the helmet’s lining, which also closes much of the gap above goggles or shades.

And it’s great in my old Momo – the non-removable lining of which really needs a good wash to stop the itching – with the washable Jimi Cap acting as a clean lining, as did an oddly-folded neck tube previously. I’m a little self-conscious about wearing it as headgear in its own right, but that will pass because I forget I’ve got it on most of the time, and it does such a good job of keeping unruly hair under control that it’s proving useful when working outside, pitching tents or taking photographs in moderate winds. Available in a variety of colours and a couple of styles that are relevent to motorcyclists – I’ve been testing the Hole-in-One version which has a hole in the back to accommodate a ponytail – and at $12+ P&P, the original Jimi Cap won’t break the bank. And as for bad hair days: a baseball cap or beanie makes me look like I’ve been dragged through a hedge backwards after wearing it for an hour, but not so the Jimi Cap, which doesn’t seem to ruffle anything at all. The lightness of material? The gentle pressure? Dunno, but it works. / Andy

A proper lift is the answer if you’ve got the space to keep it, but even then you can hardly take it with you to clean up a bike at a show, for example. If only there were a simple was of spinning the wheel round, that you can easily slip into a bag, and of course there is. I’ve got vague recollections of Harley themselves doing something like this a while ago, and can see why they might not now – it needs to be used carefully, and should be kept out of the reach of idiots – but set up properly it’s a very useful piece of kit. Having raised the spectre, let’s get the cautionary stuff out of the way first. Upside down it is easy to see it being useful as a castor or rudimentary skateboard; and the right way up, under the back wheel, you can visuallise the cogs turning over in an innocent’s mind, as they visualise a rolling road. The first is foolish, the second is on the lethal side of stupid. Always push the bike on and off without the engine running, and read the safety warnings. For your part, using it properly, I can’t recommend strongly enough that that you combine it with something like a Strongarm Lift, to keep the bike upright. If you can’t, chock the jiffy stand when the bike is on the Rollastand – anchored by a tie-down to something solid to make sure it can’t overbalance. The greater the angle from the vetical, the more chance the tyre will track off

to one side or the other. The more you use it, the better you’ll get at getting that angle right, and you can always correct that creep using the steering once you’re comfortable with it. Once a wheel is parked on the Rollastand, don’t go thinking it’ll freewheel easily: you’ve got a lot of weight bearing down on you, but that does mean it won’t move accidentally when you’re cleaning. Of course, if you have got a simple lift beneath the centre of the frame, you will reduce that weight. I can’t pretend that it’ll make cleaning wheels fun – there’s no fun to be had in cleaning brake dust off aluminium, or from around spokes – but it will be a lot easier. All you need to do then is work out how to avoid lying in a puddle created by washing the bike in the first place, and it goes without saying that you’ll be using a spray-on wheel cleaner rather than a wash mitt and bucket. In all, a very useful piece of kit when used correctly, and worth setting up with the help of a mate for the first couple of times to make sure you’ve got the full measure of it And while there are two models available, I can’t see the benefit in saving a fiver and restricting your options: you can always put a lighter bike on the RS2, but you shouldn’t put a heavier bike on the RS1. / Andy

AmV46.Reviews.indd 16

04/05/2011 15:47

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3/5/11 14:23:56

Blackl 2011 FXS


AmV46.Blackline.indd 18

01/05/2011 00:17

Roadtest: 2011 Harley-Davidson FXS Blackline


I don’t ever recall so rousing a chorus of “So what!” greeting a new model out of Milwaukee, but that’s the response that the mid-season announcement of Harley’s 2011 FXS Blackline received.

AmV46.Blackline.indd 19


01/05/2011 00:17

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3/5/11 16:22:35





14 13






















Langage Business Park, Eagle Road, Plympton, Plymouth, Devon PL7 5JY T: 01752 332775

Plymouth Harley-Davidson

Corner House Garage, Whitecross, Wootton, Oxfordshire OX13 6BS T: 01865 735121

Oxford Harley-Davidson

120 Ber Street, Norwich NR1 3ES T: 0845 224 0419

Norwich Harley-Davidson

Elliot House, Silverlink, Wallsend Newcastle Upon Tyne NE28 9ND T: 0191 2369315 F: 0191 2638604

Newcastle Harley-Davidson

8 Tritton Road, Lincoln LN6 7QY T: 01522 850098 F: 01522 850088

Lincoln Harley-Davidson

Lakeside Estate, Heron Way, West Thurrock, Essex RM20 3WJ T: 01708 805005 F: 01708 805006 Efax: 0845 280 2011 Mob: 07775 022753

Lakeside Harley-Davidson

Portsmouth Road, Peasmarsh, Guildford, GU3 1NA T: 0845 388 9643

Guildford Harley-Davidson

599 Princess Way, Cheltenham GL51 7PA T: 01242 240570

Cheltenham Harley-Davidson

Black Bear Lane, Newmarket, Suffolk CB8 OJT T: 01638 664455 F: 01638 660 772

Black Bear Harley Davidson










Ozier Park, Waterford City, Ireland T: +353 51 844200 F: +353 51 857206

Waterford Harley-Davidson

16 – 20 Mottingham Road, London SE9 4QW Tel: 0208 8579198

Warr’s Harley-Davidson

611 Kings Road, London, SW6 2EL Tel: 0207 736934

Warr’s Harley-Davidson

North Street, Uppingham, Rutland LE15 9RN T: 01572 823 296 F: 01572 821 299

Sycamore Harley-Davidson

37-43 Chapel Ash, Wolverhampton WV3 0UF T: 01902 371600 harley-davidson-bike.html

Stratstone Harley Davidson

Waterlinks Motor Village Lichfield Road, Aston, Birmingham B6 5RQ T: 0121 335 7043 harley-davidson-bike.html

Stratstone Harley Davidson

Holmes Hill, Nr Lewes, East Sussex BN8 6JA

Shaw Harley-Davidson

216 Queens Road, Beeston, Nottingham NG9 2 DB T: 0115 811 4215

Robin Hood Harley-Davidson

West Strand Park, Strand Road, Preston, Lancashire PR1 8UY T: 01772 551800

Preston Harley-Davidson

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3/5/11 14:18:41

Heritage: Customising, Culture & Harley-Davidson


It’s probably safe to assume that you will have been to a custom show at some point or other, and equally that while you’ll have been blown away by the quality of the bikes on show, there was something missing? That something, I’ll warrant, will be a combination of space, environment and time. Space to look round the bike without the interference of other bikes ranked alongside, an environment where there is plenty of light to be able to see what you’re looking at, and time to look properly. That is exactly what you get at a new exhibition being staged by Claridon – the worldwide logistics provider for HOG – at Manchester’s Museum of Science and Industry: a massive seven-acre site near the bottom of Deansgate and the world’s oldest passenger railway station. The top storey of its original warehouse making a fitting home for the six month exhibition entitled Customising, Culture & Harley-Davidson. It comprises two distinct sections, starting with a celebration of Harley-Davidson’s history through a good representative selection of bikes from the earliest example in the exhibition – a 1909 Model 5, 4hp, 30-inch single – that represents the first production bikes and offers a glimpse into the pioneering days of Motorcycling.

It’s the only bike of the 30-plus bikes that doesn’t have a trademark V-twin motor, and the story of one Harley, three Davidson brothers and the company they founded unfolds as you follow the trail past more than a century of machines. Each sympathetically restored motorcycle has a plaque explaining where it fits in The Motor Company’s rich history, and is set against contemporary imagery to lend a flavour of the period that they were born into, with timelines and snippets of information on the surrounding walls supporting the story. That story expands as the motorcycle evolved from a novelty, to a civic utility vehicle and personal beast of burden into one that opened up the opportunity for the masses to explore growing freedoms – including a glimpse inside the world of the Harley Owners Group – and all still within the range of bikes offered by the factory, until you reach a generic workshop tableau

that makes great use of the space with its old timber floors and one of the original warehouse loading doors as its ‘entrance’. This scene sets you up for the second part of the exhibition: a selection of bikes from some of the UK’s top builders and a Zero Type 8, a current production bike from a Japanese manufacturer based around a Harley-Davidson engine. From the exquisite detailed engineering of Destiny Cycles to the increasingly radical reworkings of stock models created by Shaws and Warr’s Harley-Davidson – with stunning offerings from Polar Customs and Krazy Horse among others – there are also first time UK viewings of two of Roland Sands’ bikes including his Biker Build-Off entry: Glory Stomper. With a small display of high-grade custom parts from MAG Europe to grab your attention on the way out – the sort of stuff that you would ordinarily only see in situ – ahead of a display of designs by 8-Ball Custom Paintwork: if you’ve never considered the potential within your own


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04/05/2011 13:23

hogfather.indd 1

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4/4/11 12:03:05

3/5/11 14:19:13

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p030_avmayjun11.indd 1

3/5/11 15:01:58

Custom: Fat Tracker

FAT TRACKER When I dropped off the Vegas Stripper to get its wiring sorted out, I spotted an interesting bike in the corner of Thundercity’s showroom. Interesting in that I recognized all the parts, but mainly because they didn’t ordinarily belong together.

AmV46.FatTracker.indd 31


30/04/2011 22:34

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3/5/11 14:20:09





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������������������ 3/5/11 14:24:56

Classic: George’s Shovelhead FL Police

PoliceFL Stories abounded thirty years ago about Harley Police bikes coming out of Middle Eastern deserts, almost equalling those of buried WLAs under former WW2 airfields, held in reserve in case the balloon went up. The numbers of bikes involved suggested that the Iranian Shah had the biggest motorcades of any world leader, and demonstrates that it’s not only modern politicians who count the same figures twice, but enough distressed, dehydrated FL Shovelheads made it to these shores in the eighties to give credence to the stories. No, this isn’t one of them, but it has a similar story: this 1974 FL was part of an American aid package to Sierra Leone, in West Africa, where it is believed it was used for ceremonial duties – anecdotally to escort a US diplomatic mission – after which is was abandoned to its fate in a police compound. Redundant: the wrong bike in the wrong place.


AmV46.PoliceFL.indd 37


01/05/2011 21:14

CHD_OHD March Amer V



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p041_avmayjun11.indd 41

3/5/11 14:25:33

Bobby FXDF

It was good to reacquaint myself with the Fat Bob just before we had to say a fond farewell to our 2010 long term test bike, but it has been replaced for 2011 with a 2010 Fat Boy, which in another magazine’s custody has undergone a process not dissimilar to ‘our’ Fat Bob’s, and is already sporting a touring conversion, some bling and a respectable amount of miles. 42

AmV46.LongTermFatBoy.indd 42

04/05/2011 13:55

Long Term Roadtest: The Changing of the Lard



I hadn’t seen the Fat Bob since well before winter and was interested to see the results of the last major update – the ‘Grind’ paint set and petrol tank mods – in the flesh. The tank had also been fitted with a pop-up black flush filler and matching black fuel gauge on the left, which is very neat, although after filling-up at Leicester Forest East on the M1 – an expensive experience – I hadn’t properly engaged the filler’s catch and it continued to pop back up until I pulled over at Donington Services. Pulling off my fat gloves and engaging the catch properly, before the distraction affected my concentration, I realised that I’d worried unnecessarily about losing the cap, which would need to be physically unscrewed too, but such is ‘underway paranoia’. It wasn’t the best of starts, but then I wasn’t keen on the matching flush black fuel gauge either, which looked okay but showed its true colours once the ignition was on: a series of blue LED lights indicating the fuel level, turning off one-by-one as the fuel level dropped. Even full, the lights only take up part of the available area, forming a nice smile at the bottom of the gauge, but maintaining a good rate of progress on the motorway, that blue smile faded pretty quickly as the level dropped. Not especially well damped, extinguished lights would relight when navigating towns and country roads as the level fluctuated, which meant you had to be mindful and watch it for longer. Of course, fuel gauges are notoriously inconsistent, but I’m more comfortable with a needle and gauge. Speaking of which, the Fat Boy’s standard gauge seemed to drop more quickly once the half-way mark had been passed, but it’s too early to tell if that was specific circumstances or a quirk that I’ll have to learn to live with. I’ve got to say that I found the P&A Color Shop paint set on the Fat Bob very tasteful, its “Screamin’ Eagle” performance-style motif on either side of the tank lifting the functional black of the Fat Bob. Its black and translucent orange laid over the distressed steel of the tank itself catches the sun like nothing else, and being Harley-Davidson’s racing colours, you’d expect it to breathe fire. And the Fat Bob can breathe fire. Certainly compared to the Fat Boy’s stock TC96B, the Fat Bob’s 103-inch conversion is definitely noticeable. Longer legged and less stressed than even the already stompy stock 96, the power comes in great gobbits with plenty of grunt to surge past obstacles and effect fast takeoffs. You come away with the impression that the Fat Boy is plain and slow, with its stock paint job let down by a lacklustre blue and silver-grey decal that lacks the style of the original Fat Boy’s, and which belies the price tag. Of course I’m being unfair. Without the touring package corrupting the Fat Boy’s original line the new graphic would work better, running as it does through the bike, from the front mudguard, through the tank and continuing onto the rear mudguard, but the touring paraphernalia serves to isolate the tank’s portion of the graphic and doesn’t do the bike any favours. And, inevitably, the Fat Boy shuffles and wheezes more, and seems underpowered after the 103. Of course the stock 96 Twin Cam is quite a motor in its own right, but just as the step up from its 88-inch incarnation was very obvious, so too is that offered by the 103.


AmV46.LongTermFatBoy.indd 43


04/05/2011 13:31


AmV46.Glidiator.indd 48

01/05/2011 00:45

Street: Franky’s Glidiator

Water Hog 1984

For as long as Harley have made the liquid-cooled, DOHC Revolution motor, pundits have been wondering how long it will be before The Motor Company slot one into a bagger.

The appearance of a few custom built versions at Sturgis every year has heightened speculation – as if Harley would secretly test them, choosing The Black Hills in July – but the bikes we’ve seen in pictures haven’t been finished to the standards of a pre-production model or even a prototype. The only things we’ve seen that look close are Todd8080’s illustrations – the man behind the Softail Electra way back in AmV37 – for he has dropped Dyna and Softail-style tin, forks and wheels onto VR chassis to see how well it works, visually. BUT – and it really is a big but – there’s a lot more to a VR Dyna, Softail or Bagger than whether it’ll fit or even look right. The nature of the VR motor is very different to the Twin Cam, and I’m pretty sure that it’s the feel and power delivery of the lazy, torquey motor that keeps people in a Harley saddle, even if it might be the style that entices them to try it in the first place. Of course, the VR range is far from traditional, attracts a different kind if rider who is expecting a different experience, and if Harley can use it to drag those people into the family, then more power to their elbow. The question is, do they expand that range to cast a wider net? And if so, in what direction.


AmV46.Glidiator.indd 49


01/05/2011 00:45



The second in an unplanned, unidentical twin series, these two Fat Bobs look for all the world like a pair of normal FXDFs … unless you know what you’re looking at.

Ignoring the subtle “120R” legend on the tank and rear mudguard, which was the result of some inter-branch rivalry between the sibling dealerships of Robin Hood in Nottingham and Harleyworld in Chesterfield, there really isn’t that much to go on. They’re both obviously ‘Staged’, as implied by the thrusting elbows of their Heavy Breather air cleaners – Screamin’ Eagle’s answer to the Forcewinder – but you’d be forgiven for assuming they were bikes owned by a couple of mates who shared the same tastes and performance aspirations. Dig a little deeper, and you’ll see the Screamin’ Eagle 110 legend on the rear rocker box of the plainer of the two Vivid Black bikes and you might even go as far as to assuming that it’s the more heavily breathed-on motor, because the 120R just says Screamin’ Eagle,

and anyway, what is a 120R, when it’s at home? Wasn’t that a 650cc Bonnie? You will, of course, remember that as part of Harley’s new model announcements at a dealer conference last year, Screamin’ Eagle made a few announcements of their own, and one such news item was the launch of a two-litre Twin Cam. And two litres in new money is … someone hand me a smartphone, or if not there’s the old-fashioned way: a 1,000cc Sportster was a 61-inch, so 2,000cc will be 122-inches, which isn’t a million miles away … it’s about 30cc to be as precise as matters. So, this is the new 120-inch and our first chance to see what all the fuss is about. And the 110 is there because … ?


AmV46.BigBoreFatBob.indd 52

04/05/2011 13:40

Performance: Big Inch Fast Bobs

STBOBS Well, because it represents the next step up from the 103-inch Fat Bob that I really should have ridden over to Chesterfield in the first place to get me into the right mind-set, but didn’t because the key was in the wrong place, and I ended up going across on the Victory. If you were away when we discussed upgrade options for Harley’s Twin Cam motors – and even if you weren’t – it’s worth recapping. The stock 96 Twin Cam is effectively a stroked TC88 motor using a production version of the hand-made 43⁄8-inch Screamin’ Eagle Stroker crank that powered some pretty impressive 103-inch high performance Harleys. It’s a 96-inch because it runs the same bore as the TC88 motor, but just as Harley were quick to point out that the TC88 could easily be taken out to 95 inches with a set of 37⁄8 barrels and pistons, they’ll now inform you that the same big-bore kit in the

96 will fast-track you to a 103 motor. It’s not the same 103 as a bored and stroked TC88 would have been because the modern 103 is new barrels and pistons and a wipe down – a £1,000 upgrade without a cam – while the old one would have been closer to £5k and you didn’t dig that deep without seriously considering fully blueprinting the engine. A hunger for ever-more power lead to 4-inch big-bore barrels and pistons, which combined with the stock crank gives a remarkably healthy 110 cubic inches, or 1800cc, but it’s not a simple job. The CVO models have had 110-inch motors since the 96-inch motor replaced the 88, but what isn’t obvious is that a 110-inch big bore on a 96-inch Twin Cam is a full engine strip: it doesn’t need a new crank, but anything bigger than the 103 barrels needs the crankcase


AmV46.BigBoreFatBob.indd 53


04/05/2011 13:40

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058 Service directory.indd 58

3/5/11 14:40:49

Project: Road King Resurrection

It’s almost a year ago now since I took my tired 1994/5 FLHR Road King down to Leicester to consult a very old and irritable friend, Tony, who runs Classic Approach – a respected motorcycle paint shop – and who is also extremely handy around bikes generally.


I was looking for a quick tidy-up because, bless it, it was definitely looking its age. Furthermore I was hoping to get Tony to slap on a shiny Twin Cam chain-case I’d scored sometime back and a delicious pair of S&S silencers that I’d bought from Bill at the Trading Post before he called it quits. The consultation/piss-take started well but Tony soon spotted a potential problem. Both gusset plates supporting the rear loop of the main frame, right by the swing-arm mount looked dodgy, and Tony – apologising as he did so – pushed his finger right through the flaky paint and then, more alarmingly, right through the rusted steel: damn you, British winters and salted roads! A small job had just turned into a major rebuild. I can’t say I was delighted, but hey, that’s why I’d ridden the bike over to Tony’s in the first place: he’s got a practiced eye for just that kind of thing.

Not knowing what other rot might be lurking elsewhere around the frame, it was quickly agreed that the best thing was just to strip the Road King down completely, blast the frame clean, repair it where needed and then either powder-coat or paint it. Cycle Enterprises was Tony’s suggestion for the strip and rebuild, and while Tony sweet-talked the boss, Geoff, I rode back to Manchester ... considerably more carefully than I’d ridden down. Not normally all that flush with cash, I had just sold a load of my old cast-offs to a mate, ex-cop Nick who had just scored a 1995 FLHR himself. But while he virtually cleaned me out of unwanted chrome gubbins, I had to let him have the S&S silencers too, which in fairness was all he’d really come over to see anyway. They would have fitted his original header pipes much better anyway, than those on the saucily named Bubba Cross Dressers that I fitted half a dozen years ago. Cash in pocket and Tony by my side, I returned to Geoff ’s, where we chatted about what would happen next. Geoff would strip and rebuild it, checking the top end of the motor while it was out, and have a look at the forks, which had never been brilliant. Tony would ferret away the liberated parts, clean them and then either polish or paint them. And I would tearfully leave the Road King with them, with a

down payment and a rough check list: 1. Frame: Beadblast it clean, repair and reweld as required then paint or powdercoat it depending on bank balance. 2. Engine: Look at the top end, decoke it, possibly port and polish. Fit the new and shiny Terry’s starter motor (because I had one  thanks Reedie btw). Repaint the barrels and bottom end, fit the new Twin Cam primary cover – with a oneoff adapter to take my old Evo 3 screw derby cover (thanks Reedie, again) or strip the old chaincase and either polish, rechrome or paint black. Generally fettle. Possibly fit a new exhaust system, or fettle the existing one. 3. Wheels: Repaint black and polish the rims. Paint or polish the centres of the floating JMA front discs. 4. Brightwork: Paint to be kept standard – it’s the original Road King colour scheme and I like it – but Tony to bring it back to life and relacquer. Other dodgy parts, like the rear subframe covers, to be stripped of chrome and painted black: cool. 5. Odds & Sods: Stuff like cables and switchgear. I’ve left them to Geoff ’s discretion: if they’re needed, they go on. The end result should be really very nice, most definitely a 1995 Evo Road King, but improved somewhat, cleaner and maybe even a bit meaner.


AmV46.ProjectRoadKing.indd 59


04/05/2011 13:14



AmV46.LTTVision.indd 62

04/05/2011 13:20


Long Term Test: Victory Vision 8-Ball

Yippee! The sun’s out and there are leaves on the trees that will undoubtedly be reflected in the unadorned sides of Victory’s budget tourer, making the photography easier, but having doubled its mileage does the Vision 8-Ball still stack up?

With its first service under its belt, and my right wrist given greater opportunity to explore deeper into the 106/6 Freedom engine’s rev range, I can only say my enthusiasm for the bike has grown exponentially. It is, without doubt, the most comfortable, tireless touring motorcycle that I’ve ever ridden, bar none, and I’m desperate now to get my hands on a Road Glide to see how much might be attributable to the frame mounted fairing. Until then, I can only speculate as to the amount of extra work created by steering corrections on an Ultra with its handlebar-mounted batwing. I’ve finished journeys in executive cars with more aches and pains than on the 8-Ball, and that’s even with the low screen and an air-stream that’s fine for a full face helmet but is pretty unforgiving. And after a conversation in Mainz with Paul Gomez from National Cycle and Cory Ness, the hope is that the postman will be delivering a Ness ‘Flip’ screen to test, which we’re told will have the same effect as a three inch extension to the screen’s height but sits no higher than the standard blade, and is almost as black as the rest of the 8-Ball’s bodywork thanks to a dark tint. With or without that, however, the Vision will still be sensitive to helmet choice. With the Momo Komposit, Rocketeer Vintage and even the Vemar Jiano ‘System’ helmet – all with very little sound proofing – the Vision’s ABS bodywork rattles incessantly, but the Davida Jet silences it completely. I can’t say that it isn’t irritating, but I would add that if it were my bike, I’d go round the joints with a high-density draft excluder tape to fix it. The worst culprit is the screen in any position other than the lowest, which is noisier than Amanda complaining about the headwind over my head and shoulders when perched upon the oh-so-tall, but well-padded pillion. That will probably be the easiest rattle to fix because with the whole mechanism, above the biggest headlamp adjuster known to man, laid bare beneath


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Authorised dealers are getting more ambitious in their open days, and Sycamore’s persistence in staging the earliest custom show in the season paid off this year with bright sunshine. Usefully, its date guarantees that it doesn’t clash with anything else in the calendar, but that also means its custom


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This is rapidly turning into an explanation of how complicated a simple job can turn out, but then it was never intended as a specific “how-to” feature so much as a generic “what and why?” We left the newly named Vegas Stripper last issue in a state of undress, not absolutely sure as to where we were going with it. And some of that is still going on as I write, because we’re fitting it round free time when we can get to it. BUT, things do move forwards. We’re close to a decision on paint, from a range of options given to us by 8-Ball and inspiration from Mainz.

Andy at Thundercity Motorcycles has piggy-backed the motogadget m-unit onto the existing harness, and has had all the switches that we built with Steve at SHD working, and the lights lit. The bars are on hold, because we really need the bike with its forks and tank is situ so we can take measurements, and we need to make a decision on yokes because that could have a bearing. Realistically, though, completion in time for California Dreamin’ is looking more like an ambitious pipedream than a realistic deadline. So, from the top. Dave and Rich at 8-Ball Custom Paintwork have workshopped a few ideas based on what I told them I wanted, but you might have got the sense last issue that I was changing my mind: I was. The weathered fifties paint scheme was hanging by a thread and it was almost heading towards bare metal with a logo ... even wondered about casting a logo as a tank badge, but there’s way too much work in that as each side would have to be different – the red lines have to face backwards – so it was abandoned before it got chance to be important to the build.

It is still going to have a distressed look, but it’s going to be a little more businesslike. We’re also taking 8-Ball up on their offer to fill the recessed sides of the Vegas tank, which will give them more to work with, and will give us the chance to visually move the tank forward, extending that panel forwards, as well as making it taller using a coachline and very probably a coloured panel … although Pete at Rocket Bob is trying to turn my head with suggestions of fabricating it in steel. It almost made it to a bomber art style, which would have worked in with the name, but to be honest I don’t want a girl draped over the side of the tank or the riveted steel effect. I’m hoping for an original scheme, and want the name to say ‘stripped’ more than ‘Stripper’.


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Matt’s Machine Shop Specialist Motorcycle Machine Shop

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We deal direct with S&S so no lengthy order times, trade enquiries welcome. Hannah, Amman Valley Flat Track, May 2010. © Ben Part

We have a fully equipped machine shop and the experience to build and repair all S&S and HD motors and transmissions from vintage to modern.


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Let Loose the

Dogs of Phwoar


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Quickspin: Walking the Big Dogs

f In which the infamous five set sail for the land of the King of the Belgians, home of Big Dog Motorcycles Europe, and the chance to take a whole kennel full of motorcycles round the block. A lot happened in the fortnight after these pics were taken, including the closure of Big Dog Motorcycles in the USA, but over the space of 17 years the company produced over 25,000 motorcycles, won numerous awards and were billed as the “world’s biggest manufacturer of custom motorcycles”, and there’s always a chance that something can be salvaged. In other words, there’s a lot of bikes out there and, if our experience is anything to go by, they’re built well enough to make sure that there will be Big Dogs prowling the streets for many years to come, so there’s a chance you might just consider one in the future. And I wouldn’t bet against them coming back. In the rarified world of big buck motorcycles – even production models – the chances of swinging a leg across a saddle are few and far between, so when Yeti Edwards of The Hogfather Motorcycles in Southport, the UK and Ireland’s Exclusive Distributor / Dealer for Big Dog Motorcycles, mentioned that BDM Europe’s headquarters was a minor detour from the route from the Hook of Holland to Custom Chrome’s show in Mainz, it seemed too good an opportunity to pass up. So I didn’t. It was only issue 43 when we reported Hogfather taking the Big Dog agency, and I had been itching for the opportunity to see if they lived up to their billing: Yeti had been very vocal regarding their strengths but there’s no better way to find out than first hand. To recap, Big Dog Motorcycle Europe secured full EU Whole Vehicle Type Approval on four of the eight model range: the Wolf, Pitbull, Coyote and K-9. Yes I know there are only three here but that’s only because the X-Wedge engined Wolf was sold and shipped before we could get there. In fact, the Coyote and K-9 are the personal bikes of the BDM EU management team, Jos and Ivan Dewit, and the K-9 had literally just been liberated from its crate that morning, and the Pitbull had a home to go to as a dealer demonstrator as soon as we’d finished. With no small amount of irony, the Big Dog Europe couldn’t get the bikes out of the States quickly enough and would have been at Ally Pally if they hadn’t sold everything except Ivan’s Coyote at Verona: one Dog doesn’t make a pack. We didn’t officially get the full range of bikes here because Type Approval is a complicated and expensive affair – even Victory only started putting their bikes through it a couple of years ago, and it contributed to their decision to rationalise the engine range down to the 106-inch 6-speed across all models – but that full

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Quickspin: Battistini Venti

Do you remember the Dyna Super Glide and the Softail Standard? Maybe the basic XL883 or even the Electra Glide Standard? A world apart from each other in every way but one: they were almost blank canvases that provided the base for ambitious owners.


Venti They lacked only one thing: they all came with a plain finish engine that made them stand out as ordinary next to the rest of their respective ranges – effectively preventing them from undermining the more glamorous models – and so didn’t quite realise their full potential. And the relevance of that here is … ? That the ‘production bikes’ rolling out of an increasing number of custom shops in the UK go further still: they are the metaphorical equivalent of a purchase order for a sheet of canvas, some lengths of 2x1 and a handful of nails. Not only do you get to paint your canvas, but you specify the type of canvas, the grade of wood and can even specify brass tacks rather than bright steel. Your picture: your decision. All of which is to say that this stunning little bobber might be a Battistini Venti, but don’t expect the next one to look like it, or the one after, ad infinitum. It is still a production bike, but in this case – and that of other built-to-order models – the model is a conceptual formula rather than an absolute parts list.


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01/05/2011 15:05

Custom Chrome Europe Show Mainz

There are ride-in shows, where custom bikes built by owners for the street rub shoulders with those created by pro-builders keen for commissions, and then there are custom shows where the professionals slug it out for the top honours and the kudos.


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Event: Custom Chrome Europe Show, Mainz

And thankfully, they’re not as far apart as they used to be in the early boom years of the radical chopper where function was compromised at the alter of form to such an extent that engine internals were sometimes considered to be optional. The ride-in show was the reaction against that, and it’s great to see that the exponents of custom creativity’s bleeding edge haven’t fallen back into bad habits. To be fair, they can’t afford to, because there are so many brilliant engineers out there who are making increasingly radical bikes that work, that pretenders wouldn’t last long under the scrutiny of judging by peer panel. And while Verona is earlier in the year, it is the Custom Chrome Europe Show in Mainz – with its huge industry support and central location – that

drags out the new crop of customs from Europe’s finest each season. Now in its thirteenth year, and with a revised format that links it to Custom Chrome’s own new International Bike Show Series, the quality of the bikes and the enthusiasm of exhibitors was as strong as ever, but with €50,000 worth of prizes up for grabs, that should come as little surprise. It’s a strange event that hasn’t really hit the UK’s must-do calendar, and that’s a shame, because there’s a lot of stuff coming out of Europe that will fire your imagination. It is quite understandable, though, because it’s a 4½ hour slog through the Low Countries for us – or 3½ at Yeti speeds in the V8 Ford F150, glad of the price of European LPG prices – and while it’s a two day show, it’s only open to the public


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Main Dealer


Tel: 01384 895225 Mobile: 07850 750095 / 07540 688089 Email: 1 & 2 Pollybrookes Yard, Pedmore Road, Lye, Stourbridge DY9 8DG


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B & H Motorcycles Ltd Harley Davidson & Custom Specialists Wide range of Harleys for sale Servicing & Repairs Mail Order specialists - wide range of parts in stock Custom Bikes Built Tel: 01726 824256 We have moved back to the Roots at Springfield, North Road, Whitemoor, St Austell, Cornwall, PL26 7XN e-mail:

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Yorkshires Premier Trike Builders. Trike conversions from ÂŁ4,500. Harley Davidson, Honda, BMW and many more! 029 2088 0885

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American-V # ONE

2011 Calendar May 12-15 Vienna Harley Days Habsburgs, Vienna

Have a look at the site for info.

May 12-15 Harley-Davidson EuroFestival St Tropez, France

Ever-popular international HOG event Pages/HOG/event_calendar.jsp?locale=en_ GB&bmLocale=en_GB

May 13-15 HDRCGB Roundheads’ Revenge Rally

Market Harborough, LE16 9HF.

Hot showers, chillout tent, hog roast, trade stands, Wild West reenactment and living history display, American birds of prey, kids fun fair, live bands, DJ ... a wonderful mix ‘n’ match rally where so much is going on. Members £15 Non Members £18 Cooky: 07872 998 685/Mark 07884 142 775 or email:

May 14 AMOC May Custom Bike Show: Surrey Chapter

The Pilgrim, Dorking RH4 1HF.

12 noon ’til late: no camping. Custom show, live bands, stalls, tattooist and beer. All bikes and trikes welcome.

May 26-29 20th HOG European Rally: Harley Days Croatia

Pre-registration is 40Euros / on-site is 54Euros.

May 26-30 Wallace Rally: Caledonia Harley Club Sterling

Live bands, 24hour security, toilets and showers, silly games, bike show, ride outs and picnic, raffles, furthest travelled and spectacular scenery. 350 limit and non Harley/Indian machines by invite only. Federation members £20/Non Federation Members £25. Davy: 077490 57801/

May 26 Harley Night at the Ace

North Circular Road, London

Last Thursday of the month, and sponsored by Warr’s Harley-Davidson

May 27-30 Wrecking Crews ‘Wrecked Again Rally 2011

Bentham (somewhere in the UK).

£20. All bikes welcome. Live bands, camping/showers, catering marquee, DJ, late bar and ride-outs. or Chebber: 07824 430774 or Vic: 07818 060892.

May 27-30 Welsh International Motorcycle Show

Royal Welsh National Showground, Builth Wells.

The return of a classic after a few years away and under new management, and connected with RealWorld Motorcycles – the Victory dealership in Aberdare. Always famous for its atmosphere, friendly town and excellent roads.


May 28-29

Battistinis California Dreamin’ Expo’

Bournemouth International Centre, BH2 5BH

Brand new event on the South Coast and the 2nd round of the UK AMD World Championship of Custom Bike Building. This is getting a lot of support from dealers, builders, catalogue suppliers and will also feature a display of Eve Knievel’s original stunt bikes, memorabilia and artefacts, among other featured displays including the Ace Cafe’s ‘flat track corner’. So roll-up to see Battistinis, Ace Cafe London, Shaws and Warr’s Harley-Davidson, Zero Engineering, Krazy Horse, Sickboyz Customs, Harrison Billet, Custom Chrome and Highway Hawk, and we’re hearing that Rocket Bobs will be there too. All this served up with fish and chips and the chance of a paddle.

May 28-30 XR1200 Trophy Round 1 Thruxton

For those of you who followed the 2010 XR1200 racing promises to be more competitive and exciting ...

June 1 Classic Bike Night

Speakeasy Cafe Bar, Epping

Harleys, Cafe Racers and Classics, 1st Wednesday of the month, sponsored by

June 8-10 Barcelona Harley Days

July 1-3 HOG on the Humber IX.

No further info at time of going to press. Check website for updates.

Excellent amenities, free on-site camping, hot showers and good toilets. Inside bars and live music. £20 pre-registration, £25 on the gate.


June 9-13 FH-DCE Super Rally Klaipeda, Lithuania Lithuania

Far too much going on to do it justice here ... visit their site for info.

June 10-12 HDRCGB Devon Rally

The River Dart Country Park, Ashburton, TQ13 7NP.

Excellent camping facilities, ride out, raffle, bars, food and club marquee. No dogs, cars or vans on site. Members £15/non-members £20. Paul Daw: 07584 423454 or email:

June 17-18 ScottishHD Iron Arse Challenge Everywhere

Run from the Forfar, across the Forth Bridge, and south to The Ace Cafe, London for a lunch and tea. Breakfast in Ace Cafe, then head back to Perth. 1,000 miles in 24 hours if you can make up the extra 56 to and from home

June 17-19 XR1200 Trophy Round 2/3 Knockhill

June 24-26 New Forest Rally

Eastleigh, Hampshire

HDRCGB New Forest Regions Rally

June 30 – July 3 Goodwood Festival of Speed

Brantingham Park, East Yorkshire.

July 1-3 Wake the Lakes 3 Kendal Rugby Club

Red Rose HOG annual bash, preregister by 1st June for rally pack.

July 1-3 XR1200 Trophy Round 4 Snetterton 300

July 6 Classic Bike Night

Speakeasy Cafe Bar, Epping

Harleys, Cafe Racers and Classics, 1st Wednesday of the month, sponsored by

July 7-11 Americana International

Newark, NG24 2NY.

This rally is very different and totally brilliant: a definite date for your diary! Have a look at the site for info.

July 8-10 HDRCGB Lakes Rally Kirkby Lonsdale

Fun and frolics in Kirby Lonsdale with the Riders Club taking over the town: an excellent site and friendly natives.

July 10 Devon Air Ambulance Trust Charity Ride-Out Ride-in to Paignton Green

Starting from three locations across Devon, in aid of the Air Ambulance, with live music, trade stands and a catering choice for all the family.

June 3-6 The Gathering

Chichester, PO18 0PX.

New location for Clyde Valleys 3-day event in Loch Lomond National Park.

June 30 Harley Night at the Ace

July 14-16

Lochgoilhead, Argyll

June 3-6 Ireland Bikefest

If you are a petrol head, then this if for you. Too much to mention, visit site for further info.

North Circular Road, London

Killarney, Ireland

Last Thursday of the month, and sponsored by Warr’s Harley-Davidson

July 1-3 Harley Davidson Club Wales Rally.

Irelands only free open biker festival; you can’t argue with that! Bands, custom show, food, ride out and lots of other stuff.

June 4 NGCC Biker Bash

Sturdy’s Castle, Tackley, Oxon

Nick Gales Custom Cycles one day Custom Bike & Hot Rod Show

June 4 Custom Show

Norrtalje, Sweden

Popular alternative custom show and a round of the AMD Pro Builder show, arranged by the TwinClubMC

June 6 Guildford H-D’s Moto Monday Fleet

One of Guildford Harley-Davidson’s social evenings at the Cellar Bar and Lounge for Stonebaked Pizze, beer and Bikes

Abergavenny, NP7 8TA.

Live bands, indoor bar, trade stalls, food vendors, raffle/prizes, exotic dancers and DJ. All makes of bike welcome. FH-DCE/HDRCGB £15 entry. Non members £20. No dogs, fires.

July 1-3 Le Rock’s 6th Independence Rally. Matlock, Derbyshire.

Live bands, late bar, trade stalls, quality food, fun and games and DJ. £15 entry, free t-shirt with pre-booking. No dogs, fires. Cars and vans prebook only.

July 1-3 Chillout Rally Warwickshire

HDRCGB Mercia (Region 9) Rally

Rock And Bike Fest

Loughborough, Leicestershire A new venue of a Grade 2 listed country house in a 360 acre estate, for this major music event with New Model Army, Quireboys and Toyah Wilcox headlining. License regs prohibit backpatch clubs. Earlybird tickets available now for £25.

July 14-17 Faro Rally Faro, Portugal

30th Anniversary of the rally on the southern coast of Portugal.

July 15-17 HDRCGB 12+1 Triple Rally Eastbourne, BN23 7QH

Rock ‘n’ Roll night, ride out and a fantastically bizarre theme night ‘The Roman Invasion of Hawaii’ ... Cheap beer, edible food, bbq and the usual rally stuff. American v twins only: other makes and cars by strict prior arrangement. Members £12/ non members £17. Gates are locked between 11pm-7am.

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Popham Bike Mega Meet Bike Jumble and Vintage Aircraft Fly-In at Popham Airfield (6 miles west of Basingstoke off A303) on Sunday 21st August 2011. Gates open at 10am Bikes over 30 years old free entry with a pass



SAE for pass please. All others £6 per person (OAP’s £4.00)

�� Outside Trade pitches available at £15 unlimited size - SAE for Traders Form �� Limited free marquee space for Vintage Bike Clubs �� Full catering, bar & toilets

All enquiries to Dick Richardson, Popham Airfield, Winchester, SO213BD or e-mail: Also check our website for further details


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July 15-17 Rainy City HDC Rainy Daze

August 5-7 Free Wheels 2011

Great informal rally organised by a now independent, former HOG chapter.

French Hells Angels’ Huge Festival in central France

Bowden Rugby Club, Manchester. . Or contact the Rainy City Hotline: 0161 301 4943

July 15-17 XR1200 Trophy Round 5 Oulton Park

July 16-17 Chop n Rod Custom Show The Fairmile Arms, Cobham

NEW DATES for the two day show format with a chilled evening between, with free camping, good food and laid back atmosphere. new site with details soon

Courpière Puy de Dome

August 5-7 XR1200 Trophy Round 6/7 Brands Hatch

August 8-14 The Black Hills Rally Sturgis

What do you need to know: massive event, huge big name bands, miles of open road, townfuls of entertainment and glorious weather, with hailstones the size of golfballs every few years.

July 17

August 11-14

Madeira Drive, Brighton

Shakespeare County Raceway, nr Stratford Upon Avon.


Prequel to Brightona: think of it as a two day event now, but with a couple of months between them.

July 22-24 Silverstone Classic Towcester. NN12 8TN.

July 22-24 H-D.C Somerset 2011 Rally

Barbarians Rugby Club, TA24 6TR

£15 on gate. Late bar, local ride out, bar-b-q, good food, hot showers, sun and beaches and live bands. All bikes welcome. Phone 01934 625737 or 07738 702050http://

July 23 7th Wolvo Custom Bike Show and Yard Party

Hells Angels Wolverhampton are having a party at The Fort: Custom Show Trophies, Charity Raffle, Food, Bars, Trade Stalls, Auto-Jumble, Bands and Big Frank’s Book Signing. events-page-2/4541874736

July 23 Belfast Custom Bike Show

Custom House Square, Belfast. Hot rods, scooters and old skool custom cars will be joining custom bikes at this established event. Noon til 6pm with after-show party tba

July 28 Harley Night at the Ace

North Circular Road, London

Last Thursday of the month, and sponsored by Warr’s Harley-Davidson

August 3 Classic Bike Night

Speakeasy Cafe Bar, Epping

Harleys, Cafe Racers and Classics, 1st Wednesday of the month, sponsored by

August 5-7 Region 3 Rally

Middleton in Teesdale, Co Durham HDRCGB’s North East Rally

August 5-7 South of England Rally Bisley

Fabulous rally and stunning rally site. HOG organised and very popular, so book early to avoid disappointment.


The Bulldog Bash

This fantasia of biker festivals will be pulling out the stops for 2011, as it celebrates its 25th Anniversary. It promises to be an epic, and while it’s too early yet to give details of confirmed bands, these guys don’t do things by half-measures. With a dragstrip, one of the country’s foremost ride-in shows, all the fun of the fair and what should prove to be a top line-up of bands, the Bulldog will be celebrating it’s quartercentury at the top of its lungs. ‘Quick off the Mark’ tickets available now at £50: cut-off date is 1st April and numbers are limited to just 2000.

August 21 Annual Motorcycle Mega Meet and Vintage Aircraft Fly-in Popham Airfield, nr. Basingstoke

Big bike jumble – £15/pitch, unlimited size – with free entry for bikes over 30 years old, and informal ride-outs to local places to eat ... probably.

August 21 Brackley Festival of Motorcycling Brackley, Northants

One day show that takes over Harley UK’s old home town

August 25 Harley Night at the Ace

August 26-29 Walesby International Walesby Forest, NG22 9NG. The Riders Club return to the forest for 2011, and the busy August Bank Holiday slot, for their Intenational Rally.

August 26-29 Shipley 32nd Annual International Rally Baildon, Yorkshire. Shipley Harley-Davidson Club continues to host the UK’s oldest Harley rally, with custom show, charity toy run, hot showers, trade stands, rally merchandise plus good food and beer. Pre book £20/Gate £25.

August 26-29 The Ace Cafe and Warr’s Harley-Davidson Four Day Festival North Circular Road, London.

September 16-18 International Rally H-DC ’t Centrum, The Netherlands. Live music, DJ, silly games, good food and free breakfast, market, ride out and much, much more. No fires, dogs, Harleys/Buells/Indians only. Visit website for further info.

September 17-18 Annual Sidecar Rally

Popham Airfield, nr. Basingstoke

September 29 Harley Night at the Ace North Circular Road, London Last Thursday of the month, and sponsored by Warr’s Harley-Davidson

Warr’s will be taking Kings Road Customs and what sounds like one of Harley’s full demo trucks to the iconic London venue for a bank holiday of music and machines for passionate petrolheads.

October 2 Ride to the Wall

October 9

August 27-29 XR1200 Trophy Round 8 Cadwell Park

August 27-30 Cornish Cream Rally St Ives, Cornwall. No details to be found so far ...

National Arboretum, Staffordshire Rapidly becoming an institution: all brands of bike welcome.


Madeira Drive, Brighton Mammoth day on Madeira Drive in aid of Sussex Heart Charity: huge, all day event.

October 16 Hoggin’ The bridge

Severn Crossing / Chepstow

September 3&4 Kustom Kulture Blastoff 2

Charity Fundraiser that hands Chepstow town centre over to the benevolent riders after a great ride out

Springfields Event Centre, Spalding, Lincs

A celebration of Kustom Art, from custom paint top Graffiti via tattoo and what is generally referred to as lowbrow art. Organised by P&KG magazine, it’s a full-on retro/lifestyle extravaganza.

September 6-11 European Bike Week Faaker See, Austria Firmly established in the hearts and minds of the long haul Harley set as the must-do event in Europe

September 7 Classic Bike Night Speakeasy Cafe Bar, Epping Harleys, Cafe Racers and Classics, 1st Wednesday of the month, sponsored by

October 27 Harley Night at the Ace North Circular Road, London Last Thursday of the month, and sponsored by Warr’s Harley-Davidson

October 29 Hogfather Halloween Party Farmageddon, Southport Freaky haunted house walk after a slap-up meal

November 4-6 Big Twin and Zodiac Trade Show Rosmalen, Netherlands The closing trade show of the year, with Zodiac piggy-backing onto the Big Twin Magazine show in Den Bosch, Holland

North Circular Road, London

September 9-11 XR1200 Trophy Round 9

November 24 Harley Night at the Ace

Donington Park

August 26-29 Thunder in the Glens

Last Thursday of the month, and sponsored by Warr’s Harley-Davidson


“The biggest and best chapter run event in Europe”: huge, great fun, well appopinted and well organised, and a good ride there and back

September 15-17 Heart and Soul Rally Newcastle-upon-Tyne

North Circular Road, London Last Thursday of the month, and sponsored by Warr’s Harley-Davidson

December 2-4 Custombike Show

Geordie HOG’s Annual Bash at Newcastle Racecourse

Bad Salzuflen, Germany

Germany’s season closer

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NEW HOTLINE: 01270 446 556


............... x Issue 1 @ £3.00 = .............. ............... x Issue 2 @ £3.00 = .............. ............... x Issue 3 @ £3.00 = .............. ............... x Issue 4 @ £3.00 = .............. ............... x Issue 5 @ £3.00 = .............. ............... x Issue 6 @ £3.00 = .............. ............... x Issue 7 @ £3.00 = .............. ............... x Issue 8 @ £3.00 = .............. ............... x Issue 9 @ £3.00 = .............. ............. x Issue 10 @ £3.00 = .............. ............. x Issue 11 @ £3.00 = .............. ............. x Issue 12 @ £3.00 = .............. ............. x Issue 13 @ £3.00 = .............. ............. x Issue 14 @ £3.00 = .............. ............. x Issue 15 @ £3.00 = .............. ............. x Issue 16 @ £3.00 = .............. ............. x Issue 17 @ £3.00 = .............. ............. x Issue 18 @ £3.00 = .............. ............. x Issue 19 @ £3.00 = .............. ............. x Issue 20 @ £3.00 = .............. ............. x Issue 21 @ £3.00 = .............. ............. x Issue 22 @ £3.00 = .............. ............. x Issue 23 @ £3.00 = .............. ............. x Issue 24 @ £3.00 = .............. ............. x Issue 25 @ £3.00 = .............. ............. x Issue 26 @ £3.00 = .............. ............. x Issue 27 @ £3.00 = .............. ............. x Issue 28 @ £3.00 = .............. ............. x Issue 29 @ £3.00 = .............. ............. x Issue 30 @ £3.00 = .............. ............. x Issue 31 @ £3.00 = .............. ............. x Issue 32 @ £3.00 = .............. ............. x Issue 33 @ £3.00 = .............. ............. x Issue 34 @ £3.00 = .............. ............. x Issue 35 @ £3.00 = .............. ............. x Issue 36 @ £3.00 = .............. ............. x Issue 36 @ £3.00 = .............. ............. x Issue 38 @ £3.00 = .............. ............. x Issue 39 @ £3.00 = .............. ............. x Issue 40 @ £4.95 = .............. ............. x Issue 41 @ £4.95 = .............. ............. x Issue 42 @ £4.95 = .............. ............. x Issue 43 @ £4.95 = .............. ............. x Issue 44 @ £4.95 = .............. ............. x Issue 45 @ £4.95 = .............. ........... x Mono pin @ £3.50 = .............. ..........x Colour pin @ £3.50 = .............. ........x Cloth Patch @ £4.95 = .............. ........ x 6 issue sub @ £29.70 = ............ from issue ........ TOTAL.................

Pin badges: £3.50

Order online with PayPal, ring 01270 446 556, or fill in this form and send it to


We ship overseas, but prices depend on package weights: contact us for a quote

Name:............................................................................................................ ...... Address:....................................................................................................... ....... ......................................................................................................................... .... Postcode:..............................................Tel:......................................................... Email Address: ................................................................................................ ... I enclose a cheque, made payable to American-V / please debit my Debit/Credit Card:

Name On Card:......................................................................Date:....................... Card Number:................................................................Expiry Date:.................... Switch* Issue Number:.......... Signed:..................................................................

* RBS Switch cards use a “Valid From” date

PAYING BY CARD? Please note that we will contact you for your card’s security number: DO NOT write it here. If you DON’T want American-V or agents acting on our behalf to contact you except with regard to this order, check this box. We respect your privacy: American-V does not sell or otherwise pass contact details to third parties.

04/05/2011 17:11


Harley Dealers      

Bronze £99 Engine oil and filter change and health check.   Engine oil and filter change plus 99 point check to the Harley-Davidson® 5k mile service checklist.


 Engine oil and filter, transmission and primary oils, spark plugs, clean and relube air filter. Plus brake fluid and 99 point check to the Harley-Davidson® 10k mile service checklist.


                         



 

  Motorcycle Wheel Cleaning Tool 01524 793308





Free Dyno Runs on a Tuesday evening from 5-30pm for Harley and Metric Cruisers. Harley Davidson Stock ECU re-mapping for stage one, two or three set up, with no piggy-back add ons. AMI Harley Certified. Servicing, maintenance, repair. Suppliers of custom parts for Harley and Metric Cruisers BigBoar Motorcycles Bulwark Business Park, Chepstow NP16 5JG Tel: 01291 645999 Suppliers of many major brands check website for details.




0191 430 0060

If we can’t do it or get it - No one can! Visit us at our ebay shop TwinCitymotorcycles

To advertise on the American V classified page Contact Andy Fraser 01778 392054 or Email:

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Motorcycle Parts and Accessories ��� �� ��

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TEL: 01604 588006 EMAIL: 8-12 Stenson Street, St James, Northampton, NN5 5ED


The Original - don’t waste your money on copies. 240 volts. CE approved. Don’t ask us why the Blaster is the most powerful bike dryer on the market - find out for yourself with our moneyback guarantee*. Cuts drying time by 80%! Completely safe for all paint and chrome finishes. *Does not include carriage refunds.


5 year warranty

Made in the USA Video and full spec on website. Buy online.

WWW.BIKEDRYERS.CO.UK 9x6 Blastert Ad 2.indd 1

2011/04/08 11:28:06 AM

Performance Parts for Sportster and XR1200 Models


Unit 6, Love Lane Estate, Bishop’s Castle, Shropshire SY9 5DW Email: malcolm@malarkeyengineering Triple Tree Kits, headlight protection, control kits, chain guards, pulley covers, indicators, grips etc...

Freephone 0800 4580677

For full details of all our exclusive XR1200 parts and Rizoma products please contact us or check out the website: Adrenalin-Moto Ltd, Unit 2, Banks House, Banks Road, Darlington DL1 1YB

Design and Development Motorcycle Engineers 15 years experience building frames, rolling chassis and complete bikes for: Cafe racers, flattrackers, bobbers, trikes, streetfighters and chops. Restorations, completions, machining, welding, wiring & polishing. Yokes, forward controls, girder forks all made in-house

Tel: 01588 630288/638823

To advertise on the American V classified page Contact Andy Fraser 01778 392054 or Email:

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Clothing Vintage Style Clothing Made Stubborn Japan’s Most Famous Biker Denim Traditional Jeans and Jackets Painstakingly Crafted out of the World’s Heaviest Black and Indigo Denim Iron Heart Denim - Heavy-Duty Indulgence - 07740 706464

Classic & Custom Specialists

Custom Bikes


2011 Range in Stock Demo’s Available

01227 378430 Tools

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Roadside toolkits Designed for Harley Davidson Motorcycles Saddle Bags & Tool Rolls from £19.99 .99 £39 NOW

Tool-Kits for Harley Davidson & American V-Twin Motorcycles From £19.99 Leather Saddle bags & Tool Rolls from £19.99

Contains just about everything you could ever want or need in a take along Roadside Tool-kit.

Also available pressure guard valve caps & roadside puncture repair kits.

For free delivery Tel: 07841 100533 To advertise on the American V classified page Contact Andy Fraser 01778 392054 or Email:

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To be continued...


Phone: +49 (0) 671 - 8 88 88 - 0

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American-V Issue 46 Preview  

Leading spreads and all advertising from American-V issue 46