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Showing posts from April, 2017

Honda NC700X DCT – Tour Test

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Honda NC700X DCT – Tour Test : 2016 Honda NC700X DCT with author Mark Tuttle aboard. A slightly taller windscreen for the 2016 model adds a little protection. Photos by the author and Kevin Wing. Confession time: It may seem like the result of careful planning, but serendipity often plays a big role in our ability to create good magazine content, meet deadlines and still have time to get out and ride regularly. This story is a good example. I wanted to do a reasonably long tour test of the latest version of Honda’s NC700X, in part because I believe the bike to be underrated as a traveling mount, but also because it’s available with Honda’s automatic dual-clutch transmission. A case of lateral epicondylitis, a.k.a. tennis elbow, in my left arm had left me unable to squeeze a clutch lever without making it worse, so the NC700X DCT model’s lack thereof let me continue to ride as well as heal up. Roy’s Motel and Café in the ghost town of Amboy, California, was opened as a gas station by

MO Interview: Catching Up with Racer Doug Chandler

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MO Interview: Catching Up with Racer Doug Chandler : Forty sweaty high school kids are on a group mountain bike ride in the Fort Ord National Monument, outside Salinas, California. They don’t seem to know, or care, about the identity of the tall guy in their midst. To them, he’s just another well-meaning adult along for the ride – probably somebody’s dad. But anyone in the sport of motorcycling would know who it is, in a heartbeat: three-time AMA Superbike champ and Hall-of-Famer Doug Chandler . The soft-spoken Chandler, 51, is one of only four riders to achieve the AMA Grand Slam, with national wins at a mile, half-mile, short track, TT and road race. He won World Superbike races in the ’90s, and competed in the 500cc Grand Prix World Championships (now MotoGP ), placing as high as fifth overall. But life is different now. These days Chandler runs a bicycle and motorcycle shop in Salinas called DC-10 (his initials and race number). He also serves as race director for the burgeo

Harley-Davidson Tops Automotive Industry In Brand Intimacy

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Harley-Davidson Tops Automotive Industry In Brand Intimacy : Ever heard of “brand intimacy”? Most people haven’t. It’s a marketing term used to describe the emotional attachment between individuals and brands. When it comes to brand intimacy, one industry, the automotive industry, takes up many of the top positions. Ironically, the leader in the automotive category is not an automobile brand at all. According to MBLM’s Brand 2017 Intimacy Report, Harley-Davidson has moved to the top of the automotive heap after ranking third in 2015. When the sheer number of cars sold is compared to that of motorcycles, the fact that a motorcycle-only brand could top this category is significant. While number-two-ranked BMW and number-four-ranked Honda also make and sell motorcycles, the number is dwarfed by the volume of cars these companies sell in the U.S., making Harley’s accomplishment even more remarkable. The demographic groups that put Harley on top are consumers 35 to 44 years-old and for

Whats the Difference Between Rake and Trail?

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Whats the Difference Between Rake and Trail? : Dear MO by, So is it the rake or the trail that determines how fast or slow a bike steers? Lot of things I read and hear seem to use the two interchangeably at random? Which is it? Heavy Handed Dear Heavy, Well, the two numbers are so closely related it almost doesn’t matter. Rake, or caster, refers to the angle from vertical at which the steering head is positioned, generally anywhere from 20 to 45 degrees – really sporty bikes being closer to 20 and custom choppers being more like 45. But the main purpose of that rake angle is to achieve the trail that the designer is after, because it’s trail, really, that determines how quickly, and with how much effort, the motorcycle will bend into a turn. A steep rake angle will almost always be accompanied by a trail figure on the short side. Fork offset, ie., the distance from the fork centerline to the steering head, is another thing designers can play with to move trail back and forth. (

2017 Indian Chieftain Elite and Chieftain Limited Review

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2017 Indian Chieftain Elite and Chieftain Limited Review : 2017 Indian Chieftains Elite and Limited Editor Score: 86.5% Engine 17.0/20 Suspension/Handling 13.0/15 Transmission/Clutch 8.0/10 Brakes 8.25/10 Instruments/Controls 4.5/5 Ergonomics/Comfort 9.0/10 Appearance/Quality 9.5/10 Desirability 9.25/10 Value 8.0/10 Overall Score 86.5/100 Indian continues to bring the battle to Milwaukee with a pair of new baggers: the 2017 Chieftain Elite and Chieftain Limited – baggers being such a big deal they’ve spawned their own magazines and websites, and why not? They’re a great balance of form and function, combining the ability to cruise the dirty boulevard in style, then hightail it out of town without having to leave all one’s worldly goods behind. We could call them “American Sport Tourers,” really. 2016 Indian Chieftain Dark Horse First Ride Review What’s new with these two Indians isn’t a lot functionally, but in a world where form is just as important, these two mark a significa