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Discussion in 'Indian Motorcycle General Discussion' started by NickJ, Sep 14, 2017.
But I'm a "Motorcycle Enthusiast"
No you not, you're a hard miler after this current trip and no doubt many past adventures.
Is it now not politically correct to be just plain satisfied with what you have. In your job, car, bike or house. Do you have to keep spending and wanting higher salary? If a certain group is perfectly happy taking handouts, why can't some just be happy with what they have and where they are at? Maybe I'm just getting ready to be on the other side of the grass.
I never really consider myself a "Biker." I've never been in a MC (although I've been invited a few times). With my work and my riding style I just wouldnt be able to make enough of the church meetings to make it worthwhile. Plus I'm not very good with "rules" no matter whose they are. I used to be a strong member of ABATE back in the 80s n 90s. I was a member of the AMA in the 70s n 80s, but let that slide until recently - I wanna run my Norton at Bonneville and have to be an AMA member to do that. I've done a few different Iron Butt type things but didn't get the required paperwork in to get the t-shirts. I'm more about actually riding than putting patches on my jacket.
As for the Future of Motorcycling? I'm with @Ghost , @Baldhead_J , @Diz , @JayFL459 , and ALL you others who want more Guts, Grit, and personality in motorcycling and less Fluff, Pomp and Circumstance. I think it is up to us older guys to get the kids interested in the life of bikes anyway we can. The Industry will follow and build whatever sells and makes them money. My preference is Always for the Home Built, Modified, and Restored Machines.
All that being said, I think it is up to us - the motorcycling public - to ensure the Law of the Land still allows us to do our thing. Organizations like ABATE and AMA help with that, but they are only as good as the members that make them up. I still write a fair amount of letters to legislators about our rights. Whew! Help me off my soap box!
You put a soapbox in the sidecar for this trip? Man! You think of everything,...man! I'm impressed!
I try to keep my opinions to myself until somebody asks me a question or just makes a statement that I can't let go I bite my tongue a lot around the public.
So,....no denial about the soapbox,......
nope, i just try to keep it hidden as often as possible.
It's about wants and needs...
The news likes to brag that finally!! jobs and wages are back where they were before our "Great Recession"
Well maybe they are.. but what about 9 years of inflation and housing is right back up to where it was before the fall..
Many if not most people don't have the disposable cash...
Electric? Im sure that will gradually be the power source of choice where practical...
Bought three dirt bikes for kids this Summer, they are the future and they are having a blast. There goes my new Indian funds!
That's the way to do it!
I hear about "bikers" and "motorcycle enthusiasts" a lot these days. Never considered myself to be either, really. Just a guy who happens to ride. Nothing more. As for MCs, I'm just not a joiner, not someone who wants or needs a "group" to tell me when, what, where, and with whom I can ride. Not my cuppa.
Yeah, I agree. But I think you are an "Enthusiast." To me an "Enthusiast" is someone who likes (or Loves) motorcycles, owns 2 or more running machines, is Not Brand Specific, and enjoys riding them.
When you put it that way, it almost makes sense!
I have owned Hondas, Yamahas, Triumphs, Indians and one bastard step child built from this and that. At age 60 I have a Honda Valkyrie (for reliability) a Can Am Spyder (for two up stability) and an Indian Scout for go fast shit my britches stuff. I just sold a Honda F6B which is a Goldwing minus the two up stuff... it was a boat but it had torque. However, of late, I find myself wanting less batteries and less rubber to maintain. So I have been sniffin and shopping. I went out and test road two new HD CVO's road glide and street glide... mmm... ok, kinda heavy feeling esp up front and damn it the engine is so wide esp the primary that spreads you out like a busy New York hooker on a Friday night. Interesting to note: the HD dealership staff came out and loved all over my customized 2015 scout.
Staff at HD changed dramatically - lots of young men and women in their twenties. I doubt any of them could afford the bikes on display. At issue is discretionary income - be honest - in our young days we weren't paying the high cell phone bills, the high insurance rates or working on huge college debt and we didn't own computers and tablets and cell phones that can cost 1K. Discretionary income goes where those that have it, feel it will provide the most bang for the buck. In this regard several studies indicate the younger crowds are putting off things like - getting married, moving out, buying a house, settling down, having babies. Commitment is a dirty word to many. As a whole the younger crowd are also much less willing to be risk takers; buying a lot of motorcycle also means buying into a lot of maintenance. Guess whose bikes cost less up front and cost less to maintain. Yep. Rice Burners; Hondas, yamahas, suzukis, kawasakis, etc...
Today 9/23/17, I will be test riding the new BMW K1600B, yes I like my baggers... I am also wanting to find a 160hp platform that lets my feet touch the ground, is loaded with tech and doesn't weigh a ton. I may straddle a spring field and try it too for comparison afterwards - they hit that same price point. All this said and done I want something that does it all and costs less after all my cell phone bill costs what a heavy car payment or motorcycle payment used to cost. BMW maintenance like Indian Maintenance is pricey - so whatever I buy I want it to be reliable and replace my Scout and my Valkyrie AND the Can Am Spyder also three for one and one for all ? maybe.
My experience with the younger generation is limited, Woolys daughter, Dew (31) and nieces and nephews basically. They all think we are nuts that we risk life and limb to "play with dangerous toys". (Not Dew) I am not sure what makes them think that me riding a motorcycle is any more dangerous then me hiking in the backwoods without proper equipment but they do. (and no I always try to be prepared) I am not sure if it because they had family that never let them sled or fall or crash a bicycle over a homemade ramp. They seem to think everything should be bubble wrapped to save themselves from hurt. (Not all but a lot of them.)
So the "kids" I see on two wheels riding around are on older bobber type bikes. I always smile as that is where I started decades ago. Not because that was what I wanted but that was what I could afford. When I ask they seem to agree that it is what they could afford and they boober them to make their "statement". I think that they will grow older as we did and more financially secure as we did and end up wanting more. More comfort, more speed and more technology, after all I think that technology is what they want most. They live and breath it every day. Just look around anywhere, the younger people are hooked on their phones and tablets 24/7. They cannot live without it they spend almost every waking moment on it. So just maybe the future of motorcycling is not what the manufactures do to a machine but what technology does to the this machine. Hell they may soon be driving a car that drives themselves and they like that idea . So maybe that is what they want from a motorcycle, I hope not because when that happens I will be sadly out of it. I like to double clutch my car once and awhile, most don't know what a clutch is. (now most are paddle clutch) SAD!
Now back to this biker enthusiast debate. I have and still do consider myself an anti social motorcycle enthusiast. Why because most that I know call themselves bikers spend most their time in bars talking about riding a motorcycle not really riding a motorcycle. Hell they load tour bikes up on trailers to go somewhere. (It is a tour bike made for taking off and enjoying the road for extended periods of time.) I would rather just ride a motorcycle. And was told by a few "Bikers" that bull shitting is bars is as important as riding. Yep I don't fit into that crowd.
I would put myself in the “enthusiast” category. I have owned many brands and am down to an Indian and Harley right now. I have been looking and considering buying a Zero electric bike. Just seems like a hoot if you just plan on doing less than 100 miles that day.
I think with the younger generation you are going to have to tie motorcycles in with other pursuits. Many kids today do not even want a driver’s license when they are of age. “Independence” is not a driving factor in their life, mommy is a much better deal. They are going to be looking more at cheap commuting which means less displacement and more tech. I think the major manufacturers have been going in the right direction to draw them. But, they are going to have to get more into the “why” instead of the “what”.
You and me both, @Gina ! you and me both. I enjoy talking motorcycles, but I don't really fit into that self-proclaimed "Biker" crowd. Those guys n gals are good for an inner giggle though.
And a few WTF moments also.
I agree with most of the young kids these days are not very independent. I have 4 nephews and a niece and None of them got their driver's licenses until they were over 18. One of the nephews didn't get his license until he was 21. Both my kids (daughter and son) got theirs on their 16th birthdays. My daughter couldn't wait for hers, my son wasn't too worried about it until he actually turned 16.
I think the next group of kids will be way more independent than this group. Or maybe I am just hopeful.