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Off Topic: Motorcycles

After the very enthusiastic discussion on Automobiles, I thought it would be appropriate to talk about one of my greatest loves, Motorcycles.

Motorcycles are in my blood.  My father is a retired City Of Cleveland Motorcycle cop.  My uncles all ride Harleys.  My grandfather rode, my sister got her endorsement a few years ago and after some encouragement from me, my wife also rides her own bike.

I've been riding a street bike since I was 18 and bought my first bike with my first real income tax return.  I can't imagine not owning a motorcycle. 

A little note to all you car guys; once you ride an even relatively fast motorcycle, the fastest of cars becomes a yawner.  The horsepower to weight ratio of a fast bike provides an experience far beyond anything that a car can provide - and for a fraction of the cost.

I've been riding for over 20 years now, and a lot has changed over the years; most notably, the ways in which you can earn your endorsement.  "Back In The Day", there was only one way......get your "Temps", practice and decide whether or not to take the test at the BMV.  This option is still available, but now the much more popular (and arguably wiser) method is to take the State funded MSF (Motorcycle Safety Foundation) 3 day course that culminates in the road test for your endorsement.  Of course there will always be those that either never get their endorsement and choose to ride either illegally or just on the "Temps" every year, but since the State Of Ohio decided some years back to make it possible for a law enforcement officer to pull over anyone on a motorcycle and check for an endorsement without any Primary Offense, this practice has become much more risky.  A traffic citation, cost of a tow and an impounded bike seems awfully silly when after the State Of Ohio subsidy the MSF course will set you back a whopping $25.

If you are thinking about riding, I'd highly recommend taking the MSF course.  I took the advanced version when my wife took the beginner's and I thought with my background and training from my father I'd be bored.  Although I was without a doubt the most skilled rider in my class (*ahem* - if I do say so myself), I still learned a few things and was satisfied that I had sharpened my skills by the course end.

 

Although I currently ride a Harley (2002 V-Rod) and my last bike was also a Harley restoration project, I have an affinity for many brands and styles of bikes.  If I won the lottery I'd have to build a 6 car garage to house my one of every make collection.  I'm not a Sportbike fan - but the Ducatti Diavel would be a must for my collection.  I've been seriously eyeing up a Yamaha FJR 1300 for long distance riding......

So, what do you ride?  Post some pictures!  Do you want to ride?  Have questions?  Fire away!

Here's a couple pic's of mine to get the ball rollin'.  I'll look for some old photos of my Sportster restoration to post later.  Wish I had never sold that bike......

 

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One more........

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