Saturday, February 9, 2013

Sponsor Spotlight. Jaybrake

Jaybrake manufactures forward foot controls, hand controls, brake calipers, and other motorcycle accessories to fit Harley-Davidson and American V-twin Motorcycles. These made in the USA billet motorcycle accessories are certain to help you personalize your custom or Harley-Davidson.
Jaybrake has been manufacturing precision motorcycle accessories to fit your American V-twin since 1981 and is both an ISO certified and TUV certified company.Jaybrake is most recognized for our performance billet aluminum brake calipers with designs to directly mount to Harley-Davidson  Sportster, Dyna, Softail, Vrsc, CVO, and Touring motorcycles. Jaybrake also has forward foot controls engineered to mount to entire Harley-Davidson line-up including the J-fl forward controls specifically designed to fit the Baggers.

Some of the other accessories Jaybrake manufactures are: hand controls, the Tranzbrake, grips, pegs, handlebar switch housings, mirrors, and much more...

 Be sure to check out their website at

Friday, February 8, 2013

Sponsor Spotlight. Dakota Digital.

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For over 25 years  Dakota Digital has manufactured the highest quality instrumentation and specialty electronics for custom cars, trucks, motorcycles and many things in between. Our facility is located in the heartland of the country, on the outskirts of Sioux Falls, South Dakota. Here, nearly all products are designed, developed and manufactured from start to finish...right here in the USA by folks who care about the products we sell and the thousands of customers using them. When purchasing Dakota Digital products, you can rest assured you are not only getting the best products, but also the best service and support available.

From Dakota Digital
Click to ZOOM!
Dakota Digital is proud to introduce the next generation bar mount speedometer. The MCL-5000 Series replaces the popular HLY-5011. As with all of the MCL-5000 Series gauges these speedometers are easily visible in direct sun.
Features include:
  • 0- 255 MPH/ km/H user adjustable speedometer
  • Odometer and Trip Odometer
  • Indicators for Left and Right Turn Signals, Highbeam, Neutral, Low Oil Pressure and Check Engine
  • Choice of Black or Chrome housing
  • 3-1/2" x 2"

Classic Speedometer/ Tachometer Information Center
From Dakota Digital
Click to ZOOM!
Classic Speedometer/ Tachometer Information Center
Introducing the latest in a long line of great gauges!  The MCV-7000 series really does have it all.
Dimensions: 5-7/8" x 2" x 1-3/4" D
  • 0-199 MPH or KM/H Speedometer
  • 0-8,000 RPM Bar Graph Tachometer with 0-16,000 numeric readout
  • Oil Pressure Gauge, (sender included)
  • Voltmeter
  • Fuel Level Gauge, (bike must be equipped with a stock sender)
  • Gear Position Readout
  • Clock
  • Million Mile Odometer with Dual Trip Meters and Countdown Service Meter
  • Turn Signal, High Beam, Neutral, Low Oil, Low Fuel, Low Voltage, Service Engine/Wait to Start Indicators
  • Performance Displays such as 0-60 MPH/KM/H Timer, 1/4 Mile Time and Speed, High Speed and RPM Recall
  • Positive Locking Connectors for all Wires
  • Choice of Black or Chrome housing.
 Be sure to check out their website for all your instrumentation needs

Sponsor Spotlight. Avon Tyres.

What can I say.... These people ROCK.. It has been nothing but a pleasure to work with them. Every time I have talked with them I have learned. I hope to tour their facility in Stowe, Ohio soon.
I'll be running the Distanzia model most of the time because of the on road and off road capabilities.
I will also be running the Storm2 and Azaro ST tires for the on road only portions of my journey.

 Check out their website at

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Sponsor Spotlight. Hawg Halters Inc.

"Start with the best, Stop with the best" is more than just a catchy ad slogan, it's truly how we feel about what we do at Hawg Halters. Starting with an idea and engineering it with technologies like solid modeling and finite element analysis is just the beginning of one of our products. We select only the best materials, aircraft grade 6061 billet aluminum custom drawn to our specifications, stainless steel alloys best suited for the application, all to produce the best performing products available. We then prototype and test until it is right. We develop the most effective manufacturing methods for each component with the use of computer aided manufacturing and CNC high speed machining centers.

 Parts go through detailed inspection using the most advanced CMM technology providing precise measurements and unbeatable quality. After careful inspection, each part is processed through the finishing stages. Polished, chromed and anodized parts are finished to industry leading show quality standards. Assembly by experienced craftsmen using HHI custom made fixtures and jigs bring it all together followed by bench testing and final inspection to insure proper operation. All that's left is packaging to ensure your part arrives in perfect condition. We ride what we build and believe we manufacture the finest American made products for the American V-twin. We're craftsmen, perfecting the art of your next custom ride.

 American Made Parts and American Made Service straight from the mountains of North Georgia....

Sponsor Spotlight. Spectro Oil

Spectro® Oils is one of the world’s foremost manufacturers and packagers of premium – quality lubricants.
Our products are engineered to provide the highest levels of performance across the full range of full-synthetic, semi-synthetic and petroleum lubricants for all types of power-sports engines and transmissions. Spectro® provides unsurpassed strength and endurance to protect your engine against wear and tear.
The Spectro® line also includes superior suspension fluids, fork oils, brake fluids, coolant, chain lubes, filter cleaners/oils, and appearance products.
We’ve added some new features to the site; these include an updated “dealer locator”, photo galleries and a customer Q&A section.

Engineering Excellence For The Sporty Engine.
BROOKFIELD, Conn. – January 30, 2013. Spectro Oils of America, based in Brookfield,  CT, is pleased to present Platinum Heavy Duty STL; Sportster Transmission Lube. Our 6 speed synthetic technology is now available for the Harley® Sportster and Buell®. This fully formulated synthetic transmission lubricant is engineered to work in all applications where the same oil lubricates the clutch, primary, and transmission.
Spectro Oils Vice President of Sales, Rollin Karoll explains, “Since the introduction of Spectro “6 Speed” transmission lube for HD big twins, Sportster owners have been asking for a lube of their own. That day is now here with the introduction of Spectro STL; Sportster Transmission Lube. Like our industry leading Heavy Duty 6 Speed Transmission lube, Spectro STL provides easier shifting, less gear noise and reduced heat for Sportsters. Our proprietary wet clutch formula also reduces clutch chatter and slippage. If you ride a Sportster, this is the transmission lube you’ve been waiting for!”

Sponsor Spotlight. Renegade Wheels

Renegade Wheels was founded on the premise of delivering to the world the best damn motorcycle wheels in the world. Quality product that ordinary people can afford, one bike at a time. Ultra custom forged billet motorcycle wheels. Designs that are 3D, 2D and Phantom-cut, these are fantastic looking wheels...Renegade Wheels also sells matching brake rotors, sprockets, belt drive pulleys and hidden axle kits.
One of the many things that I dig about their wheels is how the hub assemblies work. They are completely removable.. On my upcoming Pan Am Highway trip I will be carrying an extra wheel and hub assemblies just in case.. I will be able to put that rim on either front or back because of the removable hubs. This will save me from having to carry both a front and rear.
As a custom Wheel manufacture Renegade Wheels has become known as the go to company. You have seen their product all over the industry.. They are the manufactures of all the wheels for the theme bikes built for the TV show American Chopper and have done all the wheels for Paul Jr. Designs.
Oh ya,, Did I mention that this is an American Company making American Parts.???

Sponsor Spotlight. Baker Drivetrain.

For the need of profound improvements in the drivetrain for our American V-Twin drivetrain, a misguided transmission mastermind at General Motors stepped forward. It begins with an average kid, a military brat, who grew up through the counter-culture end of the BMX scene and into the motocross circuits. With a fanaticism for tinkering with his bikes and then pushing their limits while riding them, Bert Baker’s road led into Michigan State University’s Mechanical Engineering program. This career path would seemingly indulge the creative urge to understand and fiddle with technical shit as well as land him a job at GM as a Senior Project Engineer to Manual Transmissions. A nice engineering job at General Motors was perfect for financially supporting his goals of being a motocross champion on two wheels.

Although there was an obvious talent, Bert was not the model student or nor the model employee due to the regimented requirements of these institutions. However, these environments did cultivate Bert’s absorbent blob of grey matter with the necessary theory, protocol, and experience needed to make improvements in the adjacent industry of the American V-Twin. This market has been longing for some significant new innovation for decades before BAKER Drivetrain.

During his years at GM, he also met a co-worker, Lisa, who was to be his future wife one day. Lisa was the bright student who sat in the front of the same classes back at MSU where a tardy, and hung-over, Bert Baker sat in the back of. Their paths would never really cross in the halls of the university, though. College, career, and a poor motocross environment around Detroit somewhat distracted Bert away from the necessary time needed to really succeed in the motocross circuit, so he retired from competition. Nobody knew it yet, but the elements were falling into place for a turning point to take place.

The rider within never left Bert. He was considering some cheaper foreign muscle bike with the latest technology and gizmos as a mode to keep him riding. Thankfully, his buddy Bill Schmidt offered to lend him his 1993 Harley Davidson Fat Boy for a weekend and instantly, with not a reason that could be explained but many know, Bert was hooked! As soon as possible, Bert went out and sprung the extra dough for a 1994 FLSTN. As any Harley owner does, he loved that bike and took the time to customize it a bit so he could cruise on it in style, and ever-so-naturally, bar hop his way into the Big Twin motorcycle world. However, that next year at the 1995 Daytona Bike Week Motorcycle Rally the Harley was stolen! The bike gods must have taken it because what was to come was the seed of BAKER Drivetrain.

Lisa Baker, now his wife, knew her husband was a tinkerer and she proposed that Bert take the insurance money and build a custom bike from the frame up. Once built, Bert noticed that this custom bike vibrated like mad with its big-inch motor. So he tried the standard solution by switching to a 61-tooth rear pulley which did reduce the vibration, but killed the performance. This particular engineering compromise was for some reason an oversight in this industry, but a nagging nuisance to Bert.

So, the transmission-centric blob of gray matter started bubbling with an idea. As an advanced manual transmission engineer for automobiles, Bert was inspired by the muscle cars of the 90’s which had the 6-speed overdrives. With the knowledge gained from working with the latest models of GM cars, Bert comfortably applied it to the Harley-Davidson transmissions that were still founded on old WWII-era technology. The idea was simple, but the execution took expertise – his expertise. Over a period of 8-months, he hammered-out some prototypes that proved the 6-speed concept to work brilliantly.

The news of a man and his elegant solution to excessive big twin vibration spread across America. The demand was intense and it would take more than a technical genius to get these transmissions to market. It would take an entire company with a dedicated supervisor to oversee the manufacturing, guide employees, control the quality, and manage distribution to customers across the world. To do it right, this is a demanding task that often deviates from creative/technical mind like Bert’s. But, that bright girl who sat at the front of the class at MSU, the one who also has
engineering skills good enough for GM, was standing right there. Lisa took the reigns as President and Chief Operating Officer of BAKER Drivetrain, Inc. and Bert stood as Chief Engineer and Chief Executive Officer.

Because the BAKER OD6 (6-Speed Overdrive) ‘felt like the cure for cancer for the H-D market’, with no business experience or money they committed to the company. Both Bert and Lisa cashed in the 401k’s, robbed the kids’ college savings, and maxed-out the credit cards in order to build this entrepreneurship the right way – a way based on the utmost quality that Americans demand. This company philosophy is cultivated at BAKER and continues to reverberate throughout the company culture. Because of this initial innovation delivered via a strict commitment to quality using the finest people and materials along with a dedicated focus to the American motorcycle drivetrain, BAKER maintains its seat as the American V-Twin drivetrain authority.

BAKER Drivetrain will always be dedicated to premium drivetrain standards for the American big-twin motorcycles. We are committed to using materials, labor, creativity, know-how and grit that is born or made in the USA. The American big-twin culture and lifestyle is centered on this and so are we! The continued importing of foreign components will be the beginning of an assimilation of our priceless culture into a larger market. This movement will fundamentally corrupt our identity as American riders. As an American company standing on the forefront of innovation in our market, an arena that foreign knock-off artists can never completely understand – only imitate, it is our duty to keep this company on the leading edge, even as our products are poorly copied along the way. We will keep introducing new solutions based on empirically-based inspiration as we ride the piss out of our American V-Twins and get ideas from our American riding buddies using our proven engineering methodologies. To maintain our reputation of quality as we develop products, our strict research and development practices will never be compromised. Our iron-fisted protocol of an intense attention to detail will always be exercised in manufacturing to continue to earn our position and the American motorcycle drivetrain authority. Convinced we have the best damn products out there, the team at BAKER Drivetrain stands shoulder-to-shoulder behind the guaranteed products that we release with plain-English-speaking technical support before and after your purchase. BAKER Drivetrain’s purpose is to steadfast against the foreign agents as one of the few companies that keeps the purity and integrity of a legendary motorcycle know as the AMERICAN V-Twin. There’s so much more to it than ‘buying American’. Live it

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Sponsor Spotlight. S&S Cycles

S&S was formed

George Smith (S) and Stanley Stankos (S), offically started the
 company in Blue Island, Illinois, a suburb just south of Chicago.
  A year later George and his wife Marge,  bought Stanley's interest
 in the business and began to run S&S out of the basement of their
 Blue Island home.


The first product that George Smith and Stanly Stankos offered
 for sale in 1958, was a set of light weight aluminum pushrods that
 converted hydraulic tappets to solid lifters. This upgrade in the
 valve train of stock engines of that day resulted in the ability to
 operate at higher rpm resulting in more available power.
The release of the first S&S carburetor in 1967 offered a much
 simpler and more cost effective way to go fast.

Viola, Wisconsin
Despite a ful-time job and the demands of a fledging business,
 George and Marge felt drawn to the countyside and the tug of
 another passion—farming and ranching.

Family trips took them through the Kickapoo River Valley, a scenic
 area sometimes called God's Country. They were so taken with the
 beauty of the land, that they vowed to settle here when they found
 the right spot. Which they did in 1969.

The Smith family home, nestled in a wooded valley just outside Viola, Wisconsin, became the site of the S&S Ranch as well as the new company headquarters for S&S Cycle.
Birth of the Sidewinder

By 1977, S&S Cycle offered both high performance rod sets and big bore cylinders. As always, Smith was providing simple yet efficient solutions to the problems of building large displacement Harley-Davidson® motors. Now the S&S customer could order stroker flywheels, big bore cylinders, pistons, and many related parts. The "Sidewinder" motor had been born.
S&S Cycle has been in the business of manufacturing high quality, high performance engine components for over 50 years. What started as a passion for speed, grew into the best known company name in the V-Twin high performance aftermarket. George Smith Sr. had to build his own parts to make his motorcycle faster. Now the company he founded manufactures the most prestigious line of "go fast" v-twin engine parts in the world. The company was started in the basement of his home in Blue Island IL in 1958, and moved to Viola, WI in 1969. In 2004 an additional facility was opened in LaCrosse, WI.

"Motor is the first word in Motorcycle" was one of the first things I heard when I arrived at the company headquarters for S&S Cycles in Viola, Wisconsin. The day before I had taken an extensive tour of their facilities. From rough stock receiving to the Dyno room I had been guided threw the inner workings of the leader in American V-Twin Power. Now I was sitting across the desk from the man in charge of decisions. For the next 30 minutes we talked about a dream that I have had for most of my adult life. We talked about how through a chain of events that dream had become a project and we talked about the purpose and the goals of the project. In a nutshell, Building a motorcycle with as close to 100% all American made parts. Not a themed bike with streamers and sparklers sticking out of the grips but a bike that would be tested for endurance, function and dependability. The initial test being The Pan American Highway. As I left his office that day I had a list in my hand of the things that I needed to do to make this bird fly. With a nod, a wink and a smile I was given some assurance that my time would not be wasted in completing that list. After no less than a dozen conversations about everything from altitude and fuel quality to serviceability and preventative maintenance we agreed on an engine configuration that would accomplished our defined goals. We concluded that the Evolution Big Twin V-111 motor with some minor upgrades would be the motor for the job. 
 I can not say enough about the good people at S&S. It has been a pleasure working with them on every step of this project. From the technical side all the way down to manufacturing, marketing and sales. These people are top notch professionals who know what they are talking about. And they ride motorcycles. I look forward to continue a working relationship with them. Look for me and "Old Glory"  at the next motorcycle rally you are at. We will be spending time with the good folks from S&S Cycles..
Until we meet again,

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

The Gypsy Biker Bedroll product review

(This review was written by a dude other than me a few yrs ago)

Don is a guy on two wheels who makes a kickass bedroll called the Gypsy Biker Bedroll, which has seen the most hardcore mofos through long road trips. Don often tells people that the Gypsy Biker Bedroll is "a little past comfortable." I think Comfortable is a few miles west of Albuquerque. It's kinda gritty.
According to Don, his bedrolls are not made for the rider who has an itinerary and hotel reservations. The Gypsy Biker Bedroll is made for the dude who is following the wind and "living the life." He has no tent. He has no sleeping bag. He has the wind and somewhere, a cold beer waiting to be turned into piss and hopefully, a loud fart.

The history of Don's bedroll started when he was a boy watching old black and white westerns. Every cowboy had a bedroll on his saddle but you seldom saw one open or be used. He figures sleeping cowboys did not make for good TV, but he knew they were an integral part of a smart cowboy's pack.
He decided to make a bedroll for himself last April. Don searched for a waterproof outer cover and settled on a 10oz. cotton duck tarp. It is the same kind of tarp he recalls farmers of his youth using to cover their tractors. He folded the tarp in half and fastened the bottom and half of one side with hand-driven copper rivets. For the rest of the side he attached silver snaps to close it up. He found a couple of Mexican-style blankets and placed them inside the folded tarp.

Rolled up, the Gypsy Biker Bedroll is around 8" in diameter and 24" in length. When unrolled, his bedroll is 4' by 6'. That's enough room to get the rest of your gear inside in case it rains. Don told me there have been times he's rolled up a change of clothes inside the bedroll and that's all he traveled with. Finding success with his first bedroll, and discovering others on the road who were interested in one for themselves, Don decided to make them for the minimalist rider who only needs something to keep him and a change of clothes dry.
You can use the Gypsy Biker Bedroll in all kinds of weather and for all kinds of things. Rolled up, it becomes a pillow for a short nap in a grassy field. The bedroll has been rolled out to sleep in front of an Auto Zone, waiting for them to open so one could get parts. It can be used as a ground cover when helping a man fix his broken transmission on the side of the road. One friend of Don's has slept in his on a cold night he swears was 25 degrees in North Georgia. Another friend swears that it was a Gypsy Biker Bedroll that protected him from bears in a National Forest. That's a mighty fine bedroll, folks. I'll have to see if it can also chase away tax collectors and Homeland Insecurity agents.

The bedrolls have been stretched out on many a living room floor and many more back yards but was designed for extreme weather conditions. This is a product that you can expect to hand down from one generation to the next. For the cost of two nights in a hotel, you will no longer wonder where you're going to sleep. That fact alone makes the Gypsy Biker Bedroll a symbol of sticking it to the corporate man.
The Gypsy Biker Bedroll can be purchased through PayPal ( ) for $150.00, which includes  shipping in the continental United States of America. For international orders, please email Don for additional shipping cost.

$150.00 includes shipping within the us. contact  via email for international shipping costs..
paypal don't do it as a business. this is personal..


Monday, February 4, 2013

Season Two Moonshiners.

Lets start at the beginning. The Producers of the show had contact with some folks in the Maggie Valley area. My name came up. The producers called me and in a very short time we started filming a new show for the Discovery channel. The show premiered as the highest rated show in Discovery Channel history.. 2.83 million people sat down to watch the first episode of season one.

I get asked all the time. "How do I get some of your 'Shine.?
Before the show first aired it was common for me to have some with me. I would meet up with other bike riders at events and a good time was always had.. As the show has reached this level of popularity, I don't take the chances anymore.. I'm on the road. I don't have 8 days at home to make a batch.
I will say this.. If you want moonshine,,, make your own. there is plenty of good information on the web about making it in your own kitchen. I get asked for my recipe all the time. I liken it more to a "Moonshine cocktail". I just add pure apple juice to the 'shine. add an apple slice for looks and a cinnamon stick for taste.. mix to taste. I started mixing it this way because straight shine is not for everybody.. I would mix depending on what kind of drinkers I would be around.. and yes. you can do the same with any alcohol. Its just not the same..
what is the difference between Moonshine and what they are selling at the likker store... TAXES. Moonshine is untaxed white likker. If Moonshine is taxed then it's just white likker that is being marketed as moonshine.

People ask me all the time about the other people on the show... I have never met them. Through the magic of editing I was able to do my own thing. With my own camera crew I was able to keep my own filming schedule. This year I filmed in NC, Utah and Colorado. I had no control over how they edited it all together. Some of what they did didn't make sense to me. They included some of the film from last year into season two.. As for the bikes I was riding.. I rode my CB750 chopper to the Iowa Grand Rally where I worked with Jay Allen in organizing the event. I was the Road Captain and the Director of Fun. From Iowa I went straight to Sturgis to Work that rally with Jay as well. I left Sturgis heading to Bonneville for filming. It was my plan to do the filming on the chopper but fate said no. My motor blew up 75 miles from Bonneville and I had to borrow a chopper from a friend for filming.. My chopper got hauled to L.A. and I hopped a train to get back east. Thats why you saw the different bikes. All counted we did around 28hrs of film for about 13 minutes of TV. Yes I got paid. Not what I was promised but I did get paid. I also got paid for mileage. I had 7800miles involved and I got paid to ride my motorcycles. Last year I put a little over 52,000 miles on the road. 11,000 of that was on the chopper in 4 months. My 2002 Honda VTX 1800r now has 148k on it and its still rolling strong. I think I need to retire it for a while. It has become quite popular with Law Enforcement.. lol

Below is a list of questions that I'm often asked.. 

 I think I've answered most of these..
There is a reason I am not in Jail. I have not been caught. I do not consent to the unconstitutional search of my person or vehicle. Now if a cop were to collect a quart from me as evidence then the prosecutor could use the TV footage as proof of an illegal enterprise. RICO sucks. Because of those facts, some of the filming is season two was done with water in a jug.. There have been legal issues but I am glad to say that all my time behind bars has been on a motorcycle.
Through editing and the narrator they made you believe that this scene was in Missouri. Actually it was at the wedding in Aspen. They also made it seem like I got there just in the nick of time, did the toast and then hit the road.. In all truth, I was there for 4days and we had a ball.

One of the lines from the show that they used in the intro's was me saying. "I live on the edge of Anarchy". It was edited. what I actually said was "I live on the edge of Nashville Tn.".  It's the magic of Television and whether you believe the show is real or not really doesn't matter. I use to get bent when I'd see a comment like "thats not real". I don't anymore. I want you to know this. If you saw the show, there is a strong possibility that you saw it before I did. Hell, I didn't even know what episodes I would be on..

I hope you enjoyed.
until we meet again.