I think we had more fun.

Discussion in 'General OFF TOPIC' started by The Tourist, Sep 3, 2011.

  1. The Tourist

    The Tourist Banned

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    Recently I answered a thread on our modern high-end bikes, and in re-reading that post it sounded like a lot of kvetching. Oh, I meant every word, but there's a real solid concept behind it. Most of us would be happier living "back in the day."

    During one Presidential election, people asked, "Are you better off now than you were four years ago?" And I'd like to ask that question pertaining to us and our bikes. Would you trade that helmet-free straight pipe era for a really snazzy chrome GPS and a heated seat? Of course not.

    A few months ago a club patriarch asked me if I could attend a meeting. I told him I had plans for that Tuesday evening. He told me, "Don't worry, we have our meetings on Sunday afternoons now..."

    Sunday afternoons? We isn't everyone riding? You mean a motorcycle club parks a real functioning bike in a parking lot to only talk about riding motorcycles on a day off from work? I don't seem to remember Captain America and Billy sitting around for two hours discussing quorums, bi-laws, new business and fixing clubhouse rain gutters.

    I do see kids wearing their grandfather's old road clothes and trying to recreate that time. I saw the last of the 'golden age.' My mentors were some of the last WWII generation and founders of bike clubs we all know now. Oh, I got chewed out for being a dumb kid, got my nose broken twice, went broke, blew the front jug off a shovel, and spent far too many winters kneeling on a frozen garage floor.

    You should have been there. And while I admit the bikes get faster and the girls get prettier everytime we re-tell a story, I sometimes miss the unheated crackerbox apartment and those old shovels.

    Tell you a secret. I changed out my bike to a Sifton cam. Told everyone I did it for "performance." Heck, I read it had a 'longer duration,' meaning a little more overlap. I weighed 140 pounds then, and it made it easier to kick over that Super Glide. Lots of pretty girls, no electric feet...:lolrolling

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  2. wilks3

    wilks3 Junior Member

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    Brings back memories of my first HD...1976 Sportster, 1000cc/4 speed.
    Simple and very simply fast!
    wilks3
    :USA
     
  3. The Tourist

    The Tourist Banned

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    While I remember that era quite fondly, I do have to keep reminding myself I was a dumb kid. Juiced up our engines, but didn't do a thing to our suspensions.

    Check out the forks on that 1971 Super Glide. Look at the front brake, and imagine that machine screaming around town, dumb kid steering, all held up by a spongy Sportster fork and a single-leading shoe front brake.

    It's a wonder any of us survived.
     
  4. wilks3

    wilks3 Junior Member

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    Ya, 10-4 on that one! I guess it does really mean that God has a plan for each of us! :s
    wilks3
    USA
     
  5. chaparral2f

    chaparral2f Member

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    I sometimes think back about those days, and yeah, I miss them. But I also remember kicking my pan for what seemed like hours. Then there was all the times of taking that 1 guage away from old Twilight before he could shoot somebody. Of course now most of the old club are dead or still in jail, and I'm just another old retiree grumbling about the new guys. You know maybe I don't miss it as much as I thought
     
  6. The Tourist

    The Tourist Banned

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    I've thought that myself. It's like being in school and seeing the new class that replaces you. Many people have related that "they look so young."

    Additionally, I'm not sure I want to pile on 600 miles on those old bikes now. When I was twenty years old I was just happy to be on the highway. In that era older bikers pointed out my shock absorbers with a comment like, "We rode hard-tails and had to wear kidney belts to keep them from bleeding." Yikes, take a trip, lacerate a kidney?

    To them I was 'privileged,' not a real biker.
     
  7. chaparral2f

    chaparral2f Member

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  8. The Tourist

    The Tourist Banned

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    I also bought an an FXE, titled as a 1974. Yikes, that "E" meant absolutely nothing on my bike. I had to kick that thing more than the 1971 Super Glide I first owned of that model.

    Funny how your perceptions stay the same. I've always wanted a kick pedal, even on my bikes now--just in case. Oh, none of them have ever failed to start, but I remember the bikes that did fail.

    If I did a lot of stops and starts while running errands, I just kick-started the bike when I left. I knew that tiny battery would go flat anyway, and the engine was hot, so I had a shot at getting it to start right up.

    BTW, did their bowling balls fail as much as their bikes?