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Monday, March 19, 2012

New Ride! Road King for Cowboy!

After 2 years of screwing around, I finally bit the bullet and bought a bike for the open road. It's not like the Softail Custom wasn't was....but with all the add-on stuff like the windshield, bags, luggage, GPS, lowers, etc, etc, etc. that bike looked like a parody of itself.  Like someone dumped the contents of the J&P catalog all over it.

And there's one thing for sure. With the windshield, the Softail Custom was suicide whenever I got up behind or alongside a semi, and if they were pulling a double, it literally scared me each and every time. The forks would start to shimmy very, very bad when the turbulence caught the windshield. I thought for sure I was going down on I-81 once....I was thinking that it was really going to hurt. The only way to stabilize it was get on the front brakes hard, and that time on 81, I had some lady in a white mini-van running right up my exhaust pipe. I'll never forget that one. I just backed off the gas to let the truck pull away, and thankfully she slowed down too.

So this year, I got to thinking that the ride to Sturgis would be fun, but I could do without the scary bits. I screwed around on eBay and gave up on that, and about the time I was just going to give up and ride the Softail, my Bro Jeff came outa the blue with news of a deal on a Road King. That was on a Friday, and the following Sunday I was leaving a deposit on one sweet motorcycle. Yes, that makes THREE Harleys for me, but you can't have too many Harleys, right? One for all occasions. Like T-Shirts.

Details to be added as I remember them, but here the major specs. It's a 99 with a Stage 2 Big Bore kit...95.1(?) Cubic Inches, S&S gear driven cams, Vance & Hines pipes, Screaming Eagle carb, valves, intake, etc. etc. It's putting out a dyno-tuned and documented 85.36HP and 101.28Ft/Lbs torque.

Eagle-eyed observers have also noted that this bike might even be comfortable for a passenger! Now that's a new wrinkle I hadn't considered. Maybe I can talk Becky Lynn into test-riding the back seat and giving us a little review...Hey, that's the only way to know, right? (and my phone will be ringing off the hook now...WHAT?!?!)

I'll add that this bike was caringly put together by a great guy, Paul, and I think he was sorry to see it go down the road on the trailer...

So this bike gets ridden to Sturgis. For the record, the Softail Custom is in the shop right now for a full service and new rubber, getting it ready, but I think I'll just let it sit this August.