"The most erroneous stories are those we think we know best - and therefore never scrutinize or question."  

-Stephen Jay Gould


From:        Allen Gore
To:             Me
Subject:    An absolutely Idiotic opinion.
Date:         May 8, 2007

You’re hilarious. And I think you doeth protest too
much. You definitely have a great big opinion
don’t you.

You know what I think of “Sportbikes”? I think
they’re ABSURD. They bear no resemblance to a
motorcycle whatsoever; They’re incredibly
uncomfortable, they have absolutely NO usable
performance below 8,000 RPM, and they look like an 8
year old kid designed them out of leggos and bubble

I can’t help but notice that you chose to use an 883
as a basis from which to judge Harley performance.
Why not a 1200 R? Maybe because 80 foot pounds of
TORQUE in a 475 pound bike is actually useful. Not to
mention the V-Rod.

You’re trying to compare a Sportster to a “sport
bike” is absurd. It’s a classic, real world
motorcycle that’s been around as a design for
decades because like some well designed products,
it’s retained it’s popularity for a reason. But
I’ll tell ya what pal: “Sportbike” riders are
just as big a bunch of ASSHOLES as SOME of the people
who ride Harleys: STUPID people riding in tennis
shoes and shorts, cutting in and out of traffic at 120
mph with their race-boy fantasies. Either that, or
you cover yourselves in 6 colors of gay leather and
plastic boots like some kind of wannabe super-hero.
You look absolutely ridicules. Maybe the more mature
people like a nice comfortable ride in the country on
a motorcycle they can actually WORK ON themselves,
with some USABLE power. Maybe the smarter people buy
a Harley, ride it for 8 years, and sell it for what
they paid for it, while you’re ready to replace your
ride in a year. Maybe the smarter people know that
triple chrome plated steel, and timkin roller bearings
are superior to chromed plastic crap and
non-replaceable plain bearings. Maybe you don’t
actually know what quality actually IS because you buy
a new bike every year.

You say you don’t care what a bike sounds like.
People who appreciate machinery and engines appreciate
the sound of an engine believe it or not. You
probably have no taste in music either. Sportbikes
sound like sewing machines unless you wind the crap
out of them. You don’t like Harleys
so……..DON’T BUY ONE!

Harleys can be worked on, repaired, rebuilt, and
easily modified by their owners. Half the
“Harleys” you see and mock, have big inch engines
that will leave your buzzing little four cylinder in
the dust with even down shifting. 120 horsepower
(routine these days) and 200 foot pounds of torque
BELOW 4,000 rpm kind of makes “Sportbike” peak
horse power look silly. Obviously you have NO idea
what real torque feels like.

90 percent of the Harley Davidson motorcycles ever
made are still on the road. Harleys do NOT
depreciate. Your plastic coated, peaky little
wunder-bike is predictably as obsolete and disposable
the year after you buy it as a Bic lighter. They
don’t even make the engines rebuildable and
they’re all used up after only 25,000 miles.
I’ve seen Harleys with over a hundred thousand miles
on them without a rebuild, and more than 250,000 miles
on them when they’ve been rebuilt. So tell me how
smart you are speed-racer boy: The kind of idiocies
frequently displayed by sportbike riders on public
roads, make you idiots first in line for Darwin
awards. You’re really the wanna-be. Tell me about
riding: I’ve put in more than a thousand miles a
day on my 1200 sportster based chopper. You’d be
BLEEDING on a "sportbike" buddy. Go get a fucking
membership card and RACE on a legitimate track if
that’s the kind of riding you value. That is ALL
your "sportbike" is really good for. If I had a
nickel for every knee dragging idiot I’ve seen
riding like an ass in nothing but a bathing suit and
beach sandels, I’d have enough money to replace a
set of chromed plastic Japanese turn signals.

Japanese “Sportbikes” are not designed to do
anything but attain maximum and maintain velocity on a
race track. They’re ugly, uncomfortable, cheaply
made, have no usable low end torque, have no lasting
value, and the people who ride them kill themselves at
an alarming rate because they’re stupid, immature
people, with no sense of what it means to just lay
back and enjoy the scenery on two wheels.

In summation:

Cheaply made.
Obsolete almost immediately.
Ridden by adolecent morons with speed-racer fantasies.
Sound like more like appliances than motorcycles.
Parts are obscenely expensive.
NOT a bike that can be easily worked on by the owner.
Fragile parts and plastic.
Uncomfortable as hell.
Unstable (Twitchy) in a straight line.
Useless powerbands.
Ridden by more soon to be dead people than any other
kind of motorcycle.
Ugly looking.

I doubt you’ve ever even ridden a big V-twin.

That about covers it.

Have a nice day (and remember to recycle).




To which I replied


I really appreciate it when a Harley owner is kind enough to give me the gist of their email via a short description in the subject line of their message. Here, Byrdbrain describes his email to me as “An absolutely Idiotic opinion” and I’m happy to report that out of all the mistruths that populate his email he is at least correct on that one part … yes, his opinion really is idiotic but then … what did you expect?  Did you count all of the easily disproved clichés and pop-culture myths that this moron has used to defend his side of the argument? The sad thing is that this testicle pilot actually believes all of the myths that he puts forward. Now, let’s see if we can answer (again) some of his humorous misconceptions.

“You’re hilarious. And I think you doeth protest too much. You definitely have a great big opinion don’t you.”

Yes. My humor comes naturally and my opinion is based off of decades of research on the subject material as well as many, many years of personal experience with some of the greatest examples of self-made morons to ever draw breath. I manage my humor and my experience with a college education and a bachelor of science degree in business. It is a powerful and effective combination that has served me well in the past and continues to do so even now. Case in point: you.

“You know what I think of “Sportbikes”? I think they’re ABSURD. They bear no resemblance to a motorcycle whatsoever; They’re incredibly uncomfortable, they have absolutely NO usable performance below 8,000 RPM, and they look like an 8 year old kid designed them out of leggos and bubble gum.”

Well, if your opinion actually mattered then I might actually care but since your opinion doesn’t matter then I don’t. Your email proves that you don’t know anything at all about motorcycles in general, sportbikes in particular and that your “knowledge” of the genre is nothing more than pop culture myth and hear-say. Consequently, whatever it is that you “think” of sportbikes will be based solely on your uneducated personal opinion and your personal opinion will, in turn, be based on nothing more than a self-motivating form of ignorance rather than on any hard, provable facts or historical examples.  In other words, if your opinion on anything was like toilet paper, I wouldn't wipe my ass with it.

You say that sportbikes bear no resemblance to a motorcycle whatsoever?

Boy, have you lost sight of the true essence of motorcycling. Sportbikes are perhaps the last, true motorcycles being built today. They offer a bare minimum approach to operation using a combination of maximum power and a minimum of weight; sportbikes redefine the core motorcycling principle of rider and machine joined together on the road. There’s no fancy gingerbread on a sportbike to weigh them down and any “style” that they espouse is a byproduct of their feral design. Sportbikes (and not the self-propelled sofas that Milwaukee cobbles together year after year) represent true, classic, undiluted motorcycling. Sportbikes remain true to the essence of what motorcycling is all about because they remain uncomplicated in purpose; they are Spartans in a world that has gone lazy and fat in a decidedly Epicurean way.

And speaking of Spartans and Epicureans … I find sportbikes to be very comfortable machines I guess because I’m reasonably physically fit and I’m only 38 years old. If I was an overweight palsy afflicted geriatric with a pot belly that might inspire Milwaukee to name a gas tank after my protruding gut, then yeah, sportbikes might be considered uncomfortable.  If I had the body shape of a lump of cold dough shoved into a black T-shirt and some chaps, then I can see where you would find the angular, aerodynamic shape of a sportbike to be uncomfortable.  Do you know why Harleys are designed the way that they are? So that fat people with short legs can ride them. It is couch potatoes like you who can’t take any amount of discomfort for any period of time, weekend and wannabe bikers who are so out of shape that you basically have to have your whole ride handed to you right down to being spoon fed the "experience" or else you start whining like a baby. You’re like the “Princess and the Pea” when it comes to riding.

All I hear about is how tough and seasoned you Harley riders are yet in contrast, the first thing you talk about when it comes to sportbikes is how uncomfortable they are. What a bunch of soft candy asses you are.  Big tough guys and gals on Harleys yet when you take away your pretend bikes and hand you some real motorcycles, all you do is cry and moan and complain.  I’m 38 years old and I don’t have a problem with a bike that is probably the most uncomfortable 600cc bike in its class … of course, I don’t suffer from Dunlap disease (i.e. “your belly dunlap over your gas tank.”). My factory seat feels like it is little more than a piece of plywood with some vinyl stretched over it but you don’t see me complaining about a harsh ride or moaning and bitching because my time in the saddle is too uncomfortable. Motorcycles aren’t supposed to be comfortable or at least they’re not supposed to be comfortable to the point that morons like you have made them to be. The difference between a Harley rider and a sportbike rider is that you Harley riders have all gone soft. You have big bikes with big engines and no power above 5000 rpm.

You say that sportbikes have no usable power below 8000 rpm? Who told you that myth and more importantly, why did you ever believe it? All of my sportbikes have always had plenty of usable horsepower and torque below 8000 rpm. My current bike, a 2004 Honda CBR600RR, has enough torque to take off from a dead stop in sixth / top gear without any clutch play. For cruising on the highway and riding around in town at low speeds, I rarely ever get my engine above 6000 rpm, it’s whisper quiet and I have plenty of power in reserve to pass slower vehicles or dodge hazards.

The key here is that my sportbike has a whole lot of usable power well below 8000 rpm, in fact my CBR pulls harder at lower rpms than any of the V-twin cruisers that I owned or rode ever did. Now, since I’m talking to someone who rides an air cooled irrigation pump that’s doing good to sling its two pistons to 5000 rpm without grenading parts all over the place, let me explain what happens to my motor after it swings past 8000 rpm (or about 3000 rpm higher than your motor can rev and still 7000 rpm below my redline). Once I flash past 8000 rpm with my bike, the engine takes off like a rocket, drinking from four primary fuel injectors and four additional fuel injectors which go into “shower” mode to make sure that the hungry engine is kept well fed with high octane. That’s right, my 600cc inline four has eight fuel injectors … it’s all just part of that “high performance” school of thought that you know so very little about. The advent of digital fuel injection, computer controlled engine management and a digital ignition system allows a bike like mine, a bike with 115 horsepower at the crank, to idle like a kitten and to probably cruise far smoother than your big V-twin. Like I said, when my engine is turning six to seven thousand rpm on the highway it is whisper quiet and silky smooth in sixth gear. If your bike ever did manage to sling its two rusty pistons all the way to 6000 rpm, it wouldn’t sound like a performance engine, rather it would sound like a gorilla getting ass raped. Maybe if you had ever experienced a modern sportbike you would understand the concept of “performance.”

So you think that sportbikes look like they are designed by an 8 year old? For what it is worth, I’ll gladly take a bike that looks like an 8 year old designed it rather than a bike that looks like a pair of inbred, gap-toothed, knuckle dragging, hillbillies designed it in a wooden shack. At least the 8 year old can be said to have both an active imagination and an open mind; two things that Harley Davidson can’t claim to have (and evidence points to the fact that they probably never had either of these two commodities at any point in their sordid history).


Do you know what I think is the perfect motorcycle? A lightweight frame, a powerful yet docile engine, a finely tuned (and tunable) suspension, powerful multi-piston triple disc brakes, a smooth shifting multi-speed transmission, a generous gas tank, basic instrumentation, basic controls, two big wheels, two wide sticky tires, all the street legal stuff and nothing else. Somewhere along the way, Harley Davidson went from producing such a bike in its early years to producing the equivalent of a self-propelled couch as it does today. No wonder they call Harley’s biggest bikes “full dressers” because that’s what size and weight class they have morphed into. Some of Harley Davidson’s bikes are so big and heavy that they really should be sold in either “Frigidaire” or “Ethan Allen” special editions.


That model has a name far more indicative of its true character than say, the laughably obsolete and tragically misnamed “Sportster” (which probably needs to have its legal name changed to “Sportsturd” given how it stacks up against current sport or performance bikes).  Harley lost the vision of what motorcycling is all about because it relegated itself to surviving on a market segment populated by idiots and morons who didn't know the first thing about motorcycles.  After they buyout from AMF, the only way that Harley could survive was if it reinvented itself and adapted its products to a market full of idiots. 

Do you know what the definition of “absurd” is? Absurd is defined by captain’s chairs, folding armrests, reverse gears, electronic cruise control, AM/FM stereo, CD player, CB radio, intercom, electric windshield wipers, electric defogger, heated hand grips, cup holders, locking storage compartments big enough to smuggle a midget in, self-deploying side stands, more colored lights than a Christmas tree, having three or more headlights, more than two wheels, OB-GYN stirrup inspired highway pegs, two foot long tassels, tacky spray painted murals, whip antennae, and a trailer hitch. If you have any of these options on YOUR bike, then congratulations; you’ve reached "absurd".

A bike should be simple; rider and machine. Any more than that and you’re moving over into the realm of camping, not riding. If you need all of that ridiculous gingerbread in order to go riding or touring, then sell your bike and get a car or an RV because you aren’t a real motorcyclist; you’re an Epicurean dilettante. Absurd is having a bike that weighs nearly a thousand pounds yet is powered by an 88 cubic inch engine making only fifty something horsepower. Absurd is having a bike that is so heavy and slow that it will do the quarter mile in a slower time and speed than most econobox import cars. Absurd is having 88 cubic inches worth of motor, of hearing you coming two miles away yet knowing that it’s nothing more than noise pollution; it is not the sound of impressive power. Absurd is thinking that “potato-potato” represents serious refined power instead of a run-on irrigation pump with a bad choke and a broken cutoff switch. No, I’m sorry, that’s not the definition of “absurd”, that’s the definition of “pathetic.” “Absurd” would be if you were ever seriously thinking about buying a bike loaded out like that and “pathetic” would be the term we would use if you were ever dumb enough to actually do it.

Ah … we have a Harley owner preaching to me about what is absurd and what isn’t. The hypocrisy of this discussion is rich and expected.

Now, if you want the true definition of “absurd”, all you have to do is look as far as your local Harley Davidson dealership to find the true meaning of the word “absurd”. From pandering a make-believe lifestyle to weak minded fools, to dictating what people should wear when riding their products, to prostituting their logo on everything under the sun, to using an idiotic pseudo-patriotic meme to reprogram their dim witted customers into brand aware slogan chanting savants, Harley Davidson has, since the early 1980’s, not only redefined the definition of “absurd” but they’ve taken it to new lows all in a pathetic attempt to circumvent natural entropy, to escape a richly and justly deserved fate and to survive year to year as best as they can in a world that has left them decades behind in its wake. Do you want to really talk about absurd?  Let's name some absurd HD stuff, shall we?

HD brand beef jerky.

HD brand cigarettes.

HD brand coffee.

I mean, was there really a need (other than money and profit) for HD to produce these three items?  Can you imbeciles not take care of your own selves so now you need a company not only to tell you what to ride, what to wear, what to think but now they provide you jerky, coffee and cigarettes?  Harley’s number one problem is that it is too busy making money when it should be busy making motorcycles or, like a popular saying goes; “if they had as many engineers as they do lawyers, they could build a better bike.

“I can’t help but notice that you chose to use an 883 as a basis from which to judge Harley performance. Why not a 1200 R? Maybe because 80 foot pounds of TORQUE in a 475 pound bike is actually useful. Not to mention the V-Rod.”

I use the 883 as a basis because I’m using a 600cc class Honda CBR as a starting point and Harley doesn't build a 600cc bike so I compare like to like and give the Harley some cubes as a freebie (since the extra cubes won't really matter anyway). If the smallest sportbike that Honda produces can whip an 883 Sportster then you don’t have very much ground to stand on since the Honda is already giving up a large amount of displacement cubes to the Harley in the race and still putting the Harley down like Ole Yellar at the end of that classic movie. The truth is that while Harley has been cranking out copy after copy of what it used to make, the rest of the world has embraced technology and built far better, lighter, faster bikes. Harley’s engines are no longer competitive with other manufacturers. Harley cannot build an engine as advanced, as powerful, as lightweight or as compact as the engine that my CBR has.

So, you want to compare my “little” Honda to a big, bad Harley Davidson XL 1200R Sportster (oooooooooh!) or the much ballyhooed V-Rod (yawn)? Do you measure performance by the displacement of the engine? Do you think that the bigger the engine is that naturally the more powerful it is? Do you think that throwing more cubes at the Honda will solve the problem by burying it under a ton of "awesome" Harley power? Do you think that if you get a big enough engine in a Harley that you will eventually match and surpass my (stock) performance?

Fair enough.

If the 2004 CBR600RR is overkill when it comes to the 2004 883 Sportster, then let’s see how it fairs against a 2004 HD Sportster XL 1200R, shall we? Oh, by the way … what does the “XL” stand for? Is it “eXtra Loud?” Perhaps it stands for “eXtremely Large” or “eXtra Ludicrous.”


Talk about false advertising … I don’t care how big a motor you cram into a Sportster frame, it’s still a tired old dog that will get beat senseless by the smallest sport bikes that any import bike manufacturer sells. I find it truly sad that if the Sportster really is Harley’s sport bike that, like the company itself, they have shunned change and instead relied on luck and hope that it will continue to sell.

Do you want to compare my Honda sportbike to a Harley XL 1200 R? Do you want to throw more cubes at my Honda? Not a problem.



2004 Harley Davidson
XL 1200R Sportster

2004 Honda

Engine Type

4-stroke air cooled  45-degree V-twin

4-stroke liquid-cooled
 In-line four cylinder


1203cc (73.41 cid)

599cc (36cid)

Bore x stroke

88.9 x 96.8mm

67.0 x 42.5mm

Compression ratio



Valve System

Push rod operated, overhead valves, 2 valves per cylinder

Chain driven double overhead cams, 4 valves per cylinder


Electronic fuel injection

Dual stage PGM-FI fuel injection
8x fuel injectors
Ram forced air box


Crankshaft triggered

Computer-controlled digital transistorized with three-dimensional mapping





70 hp @ 6000 RPM

115 hp @ 13,250 RPM


68.6 ft / lbs.  @ 3300 RPM

44.5 ft / lbs. @ 11,250 RPM

Maximum Engine Speed

6000 RPM

15,500 RPM



Close-ratio six speed

Frame Type

twin-cradle, steel frame and swingarm

Extruded aluminum frame and swingarm

Rake / trail

29.6 degrees / 4.6 inches

24.0 degrees / 3.7 inches


60.0 inches

54.7 inches

Suspension- Front

39mm Showa, adjustments for spring preload

45mm HMAS cartridge fork with spring-preload, rebound- and compression damping adjustability

Suspension- Rear

Dual Showa shocks, adjustments for spring preload

Unit Pro-Link HMAS single-shock with spring-preload, rebound- and compression damping adjustability

Tires, Front / Rear

Tubeless radial; 100/90-19 Dunlop K491; 150/80-16 Dunlop K491

Tubeless radial; 120/70ZR-17; 180/55ZR-17

Brakes- Front

Dual 292 mm discs , Nissin dual-piston calipers

Dual 310mm discs with Nissin four-piston calipers

Brakes- Rear

Single 292mm disc, Nissin single-piston calipers 

Single 220mm disc with Nissin single-piston caliper

Seat height

28.1 inches

32.3 inches

Fuel Capacity

3.3 gallons

4.8 gallons

Cruising range

119 miles

160 miles

Dry weight

564 pounds

370 pounds


13.02 @ 100.03 mph

10.63 @ 130.22 mph

Top speed



Retail cost

$8495 (in black) USD

$8499.00 USD (in black, red, or yellow)

So, there you go, Byrdbrain.

You saved a whole $4 and what did it get you?

A whole lot less.

You paid $8500 for a bike that normally wouldn’t sell for $2000 brand new without the HD logo attached to it. That means that you really paid $2000 for a bike built to 1950’s standards and $6500 for the right to ride around on that bike, proudly display the HD logo where ever you go and tell the world what a great motorcycle you own (if the loud pipes don’t do that for you).  The real truth is that for $4 more, you could have gotten a bike that was two and a half seconds faster than the Harley in the quarter mile, was a lot better built, lighter, and far easier to handle.  If speed was your thing, I doubt that you could pay Harley Davidson $4 and knock two and a half seconds off of your quarter mile.  Maybe if you paid Harley Davidson an extra $4000 or $14,000 you could do it but for four bucks, no.

While I was looking up performance data and specs on a 2004 Sportster XL1200R, I found a couple of great quotes about the Sportster XL 1200R from several magazines and online published road tests. I’d like to share them with you now.

“From its introduction in 1957 until the late 1960s, Harley-Davidson's 883 Sportster was a badass bike. Bigger, more aggressively tuned than many motorcycles of the day, and much lighter than Harley's 74-series heavyweights, the Sportster, especially the hot CH version, was a bike to be respected. But toward the end of the '60s, its performance was overtaken by faster, more efficient machines, most with less displacement. The Sportster began to slip from its superbike status, and even adding 1000, 1100 and 1200cc engines couldn't salvage its powerful personality when other 900s were running quarter-miles under 11 seconds. As other marques introduced ever-larger twins, the Sporty eventually slipped into the position of companion bike, something for riders who wanted a piece of the Harley legend without the price or weight of the bigger twins.” - Art Friedman

“At the end of the day, you’re left with the notion that the (Harley Davidson) Sportster and the (Triumph) Thruxton were, at one time, wild ones. But increasing specialization combined with seven-league technological strides that have created 160-plus-horsepower streetbikes make them come across as mild ones, the antithesis of their forebears. With that point of view, it’s easy to dismiss these two as hopeless anachronisms.” – Kevin Wing

Anachronism. That term describes both Harley Davidson and their products perfectly.  An expensive, silly anachronism.

A 1200 R still can’t compete, stock for stock, with my CBR600RR which is why I didn’t bother putting it as a comparison to begin with. We could line them and run them down the track all day long. The only fair chance you would have would be if we competed on a straight drag strip and I gave you a few bike lengths head start as a “gimme.” If we threw in a curvy track or a road course, the difficulties would be even more insurmountable for you. The only difference would be, at the end of the day that I would ride my bike home and you would probably trailer your rattle trap XL 1200R (that is, assuming that you didn’t spew parts from flogging it hard). Nothing that Harley has built, currently builds, or will ever build can keep up with my CBR600RR, stock for stock.

80 ft / lbs of torque in a 475 pound bike? That would be pretty decent but it’s too bad that you’re understating the weight of the XL 1200R by a good 25% (a feat that would normally require one of three things; the divine-like engineering intervention of Jenny Craig, the introduction of normally unavailable extraterrestrial based XT high technology, or a suitable application of pure black arcane magic from Old Scratch himself (in exchange for your stinky redneck soul)).

475 pounds?

I was wondering what model of Harley Davidson that you were referring to since the XL 1200R weighs 564 pounds (dry) and the V-Rod weighs an even heftier 595 pounds (dry). Neither example of bike produces 80 ft / lbs of torque, stock; the XL 1200R produces 68 ft / lbs of torque and the V-Rod, for its 31 pounds increase in weight barely produces six more ft / lbs of torque, coming in at an embarrassing 74 ft / lbs of torque.

Personally, I am a big proponent of torque and am very familiar with the adage of “horsepower sells cars but torque wins races.” However, torque is only one aspect of performance and it has to be nurtured to be effective. Raw horsepower and raw torque is only impressive to yokels and amateurs who don’t understand performance. Making raw horsepower and raw torque is not the same thing as using that horsepower and torque effectively. Horsepower and torque must be nurtured and when I say nurtured, what I mean is that you have to pair them with a host of other performance oriented aspects such as frame weight, tire size, aerodynamics, and many, many other aspects.

One thing that torque likes is to be mated with the proper gearing. In order to use torque effectively, it must be geared for the use which you intend to employ it. For performance, you need performance oriented gears, not the dumptruck-like cogs and used farm tractor transmissions that most Harleys come standard with. Sure, 80 pounds – foot of torque would be great if you could both PRODUCE that amount of torque as well as USE that amount of torque effectively, but you can’t. Making a lot of torque isn’t the same thing as using that torque effectively, Jethro. Here’s a real world example to study because it shows clearly how Harley owners tend to think (and goes even further to prove that none of you know the first thing about performance).

Let’s look at my 20 plus year old Pontiac Trans Am. It has a 305 cubic inch fuel injected V8 that makes 205 horsepower and 270 ft / lbs of torque. It weighs 3400 pounds without my fat ass in the driver’s seat. I have a four speed automatic overdrive transmission with 3.27 rear gears in a posi unit out back. Bone stock, my car is good for a zero to sixty miles per hour run of 8.2 seconds and will boogie down the quarter mile to the tune of 16.23 seconds @ 87mph. That’s still somewhat respectable (it was even considered “fast” in its day when this TA was brand new and performance was still making a comeback from the dark ages we knew as the 1970’s) but by today’s standards there are brand new V6 import sedans which can beat my Trans Am like it was Jon Benet Ramsey. Times change (unless you're Harley Davidson).

Now, you seem to think that lots of torque equals lots of power regardless of weight, aerodynamics, gearing, etc. but you’re wrong in an amateur, naïve way. I’ve given you my Trans Am and its performance stats as an example. Now let’s stack it against something that makes a butt-load of torque; a Dodge Ram 3500 pickup truck with the Cummins turbo diesel engine. This pickup truck weighs around 7000 pounds and is powered by a 6.2 liter Cummins turbo diesel engine (1.2 liters (roughly 72 cubic inches) larger than my power plant) producing 325 horsepower and 610 ft / lbs of torque.

Holy crap!

That monster is a land rocket on wheels and it’s going to hand my poor Trans Am its 20 year old ass!

Or is it …?


In order to keep you from searching through all your stacks of EASY RIDER (with the stuck together pages) just to find a calculator buried underneath, I’ll do the math for you. The Dodge Ram pickup truck weighs almost twice what my car weighs yet has 115 more horsepower and 340 more ft / lbs of torque. It also has 4.10 cogs in the rear pumpkin, compared to my more sedate 3.27 rear gears. On paper (and to the naïve), the Dodge Ram should own me all day long because it has a bigger engine that makes far more horsepower and torque but, again, making horsepower and torque are not the same things as using that horsepower and torque effectively. The Dodge Ram makes impressive power but it is not a performance vehicle nor it is designed as such, hence, the large amount of power that it generates cannot be used as effectively as the power that my ’86 Trans Am generates. Harley Davidsons make impressive torque but they are not performance motorcycles, if they can truly be considered motorcycles at all (which I do not consider them to be) and the limitations of their engine design (and the supporting power train components) mixed with a poorly designed suspension, laughable aerodynamics and poor gearing all work to undermine (nay, neutralize) any advantage that the extra power that they produce would offer.

In the real world, putting the brand new Dodge Ram up against my 20 year old Trans Am at the drag strip would generate the following numbers. My 1986 Trans Am would see sixty miles per hour in 8.2 seconds and the quarter mile in 16.23 seconds at a speed of 87 mph (according to a road test done by Hot Rod magazine in 1986). The brand new Dodge Ram would see sixty miles an hour in 18.7 seconds and would cross the quarter mile line in 21.7 seconds at a speed of 64.5 miles an hour. For real world purposes, the Dodge Ram takes a quarter mile to build up to 60 miles per hour and in a stand up race between the TA and the Dodge, the TA would cross the finish line almost five and a half seconds before the truck did. Now, I know that you don’t know anything about performance and probably won’t know anything about racing but in the quarter mile, five and a half seconds behind my TA might as well be next year for all the good it will do you.  If we put a curve at the end of the drag strip, the Dodge Ram is going to be in serious trouble.


How is it that a truck with a 115 horsepower advantage and over twice the torque can be such a sloth at the drag strip, especially when it has 4.10 gears in the rear?


The truck, like your Harley Davidson (like any Harley Davidson), is simply not built for performance. It’s built for towing yachts and pulling stumps clean out of the ground (while Harleys are built for hauling lard asses around). The fact that the Dodge Ram has the aerodynamic profile of a pregnant rhinoceros doesn’t help its performance either. What does this mean? It means two things:

Thing one; real world performance is different than a bunch of numbers on paper. Just because your bike makes more torque than my bike doesn’t mean that your bike is going to whip my bike.

Thing two; performance is the end result of a multi-step process. While there may be no substitute for cubic inches, dropping in cubes without the hardware to back it up (or without the careful thought required to match components) is going to hurt you more than help you.  More cubes always mean more weight and if you had a heavy frame / chassis to begin with, more cubes are just going to be soaked up in all of that extra weight.  The extra power that the extra cubes add are lost in the weight of the frame.

Harleys are all about pretend and make-believe.  Harleys sound bad without actually being bad.  Harleys feel fast (thanks to the thrust of their gobs of torque) without actually going fast (because all of that torque is soaked up in their heavy frames, ludicrous gear ratios and low rpm ceiling).

You could make it even simpler by saying that this example and these numbers mean one thing and it is the one simple thing that I can’t seem to teach all of you double-wide mobile cave dwellers … It is the one simple thing that I learned by reading when I was ten years old, the one thing which I used all during my teenage years to win races and have fast cars and the one thing which I still use and live by today 28 years later yet most of you still won’t understand when you’re fifty.

Performance is not any one specific thing or aspect. Performance is a mixture of many things, all working together towards an end that is greater than the sum of the means to get there.

Performance is many things; weight, engine, transmission, rear end, suspension, aerodynamics, cam choice, intake choice, engine flow, and a myriad other factors. Sure, you can throw some Squealing Turkey parts at your Harley and you might notice a difference in performance. If you throw in a set of Squealing Turkey heads, better intake, a larger carb, etc. then you will notice that the total performance you achieve is greater than the sum of all the parts you used to get there. Performance is synergy, not luck. Yes, Harleys make a lot of power (relatively speaking). On paper. Yes, a 1200R makes about twice the torque that my bike does but it also weighs nearly twice as much as my bike and the Milwaukee V-twin is not a fast revving engine nor does it have a stratospheric operating range (6000 RPM qualifies it for the “asthmatic” category, I think there are some vacuum cleaners out there that can move more air than a HD V-twin at full throttle). You make power that you really can’t use effectively. Your air cooled V-twin makes power but it isn’t power that is useable for performance because it isn’t matched to the other parts that would allow it to be used for performance.

Harley Davidsons are sheep in wolf’s clothing.

You growl and hope no one lifts up the corner of your façade and looks underneath because if they ever do, you’re in trouble. You talk the talk (and you talk very loud) but you can’t walk the walk. Harleys make a whole lot of torque but they don’t use that torque very effectively which explains why they can’t keep up with anything faster than a flatulent tortoise.

The fastest stock Sportster out there is still a low 13 second bike at best and that’s with a professional rider on board, not Cubicle Joe out for his weekend pose. 80 ft / lbs of torque in a 475 pound bike would be great, if the bike had decent gearing and a rev limit greater than those usually found in a commercial diesel truck engine application. I’d rather have 44 ft / lbs of torque in a 370 pound bike with a 15,000 rpm rev limit than 68 ft / lbs of torque in a 564 pound bike with a 6,000 rpm rev limit. You forgot to mention that the 564 pound bike is further hampered by the 280 pound mouth breathing leather draped logo festooned daydreaming retard sitting astride it, a retard that usually has all the riding skill of a epileptic orangutan. The three foot tall windshield and the leather saddle bags don’t help your coefficient of drag (a measurement of aerodynamic performance) very much either.

I see that you also mention the V-Rod in an almost reverent manner. Has the V-Rod become your greatest bet in the age old HD vs. Import performance gamble? If so, then you’re stacking your money with the equivalent of someone entering a donkey in the Kentucky Derby. Ah, yes, the V-Rod; the “water-hog” and the greatest of Harley Davidson’s failures yet. I think the V-Rod is the only Harley Davidson model to ever get booed at its introduction to the public and those boos were by The Faithful who were in attendance. It just goes to show that the kind of person who desires a Harley (and is one of The Faithful) is really nothing more than a Luddite by nature.


Let’s recount the history of the V-Rod because I never get tired of debunking the VRSC and showing the facts behind its so-called “pedigree.” The V-Rod is the product of a tragic (and nigh often humorous) nearly decade long losing streak of Harley Davidson trying to compete in the real world of professional motorcycle sports by using the VR1000. The V-Rod is the end product of a company that didn’t take the advice of some of the greatest riders in the world, riders that it had hired (based on their previous winning experience) in order to campaign its new VR1000 wonder (blunder?) bike in the first place. Yes, when it came to actually campaigning their bike, Harley chose to ignore the advice of the people who were actually riding the bike. It just goes to show that even if you’re one of the world’s best riders and professional racers, if someone hands you a shit bike and doesn’t fix what you tell them is wrong with it, then they can’t expect you to have any kind of winning season. The funny thing is that Milwaukee actually thought that they knew more about motorcycle racing (and winning) than seasoned professionals who had been riding (and winning world championships) for years before (and afterward) when Harley had never done anything of the sort.

The upper management of Harley Davidson wondered why they lost race after race after race (and made an absolute ass out of their selves in doing so). The reason for the VR1000’s failure is simple; Harley doesn’t know the first thing about performance or competition and if the rules aren’t changed in their favor, then chances are that they don’t stand a chance of winning. So much about Harley Davidson is about handouts, from competition to government bailouts of a company that should have been allowed to die a natural death (it’s competitors and predecessors all went out of business due to bad luck and bad decision making at the top levels but Harley managed to escape that fate by playing the patriot card and begging on bent knee for help from Uncle Sam). If Harley isn’t given a handicap, if it isn’t given a helping hand, it can’t compete and it has no chance of winning (small that it is even with the hand out).

The V-Rod uses a high performance liquid cooled Porsche designed engine because the hillbillies in Milwaukee can’t build a real performance engine of their own (not surprising since it took AMD to hand them the EVO engine in the first place, thus taking them almost overnight from a 20,000 mile (at best) engine to a 100,000 mile engine and proving beyond a shadow of a doubt that a company that is best known for making bowling balls can design a better engine than Milwaukee ever could). The one critical failure of the V-Rod is that it is an exceptionally well made German engine in a laughingly shoddy made American designed frame. The marriage of German performance and American suspension is an ugly mixture to be sure and one that doesn’t exactly work in the real world like it works on paper (or in marketing). If Harley Davidson is betting its performance future on building frames that it stuffs other countries engines in, then it’s going to do a lot to alienate its core followers (dumb as they are to begin with) and it will only go to further prove my belief that Betty Crocker could build a better engine than Harley could, left to their own devices.

The V-Rod.


I’ve already compared the V-Rod to my own CBR600RR years ago but let’s do it again.

Specifications 2004 Honda CBR600RR 2004 Harley Davidson
Engine Type 4-stroke liquid-cooled In-line four cylinder 4-stroke, 60 degree liquid cooled V-twin
Displacement 599cc (36cid) 1130cc (69cid)
Bore x stroke 67.0 x 42.5mm 100.0 x 72.0mm
Compression ratio 12.0:1 11.3:1
Valve System Chain driven double overhead cams, 4 valves per cylinder Four valves per cylinder
Induction Dual stage fuel injection- PGM-FI Sequential port electronic fuel injection
Ignition Computer-controlled digital transistorized with three-dimensional mapping Sequential, single fire non waste spark, coil on plug
Starting Electric Electric
Horsepower 115 hp @ 13,250rpm 115 hp @ 8500rpm
Torque 44.5 lbs. / ft @ 11,250rpm 74 lbs/ft @ 7000rpm
Transmission Close-ratio six speed 5 speed dog and pocket, spur type first and fifth gears, helical second through fourth gears
Frame Type Aluminum, extruded Steel perimeter upper frame w/hydro-formed main rails and bolt-on lower frame rails
Rake / trail 24.0 degrees / 3.7 inches 34.0 degrees / 3.9 inches
Wheelbase 54.7 inches 67.5 inches
Suspension- Front 45mm HMAS cartridge fork with spring-preload, rebound- and compression damping adjustability Wide 49mm custom fork
Suspension- Rear Unit Pro-Link HMAS single-shock with spring-preload, rebound- and compression damping adjustability Cast aluminum swing arm
Tires, Front / Rear Tubeless radial; 120/70ZR-17; 180/55ZR-17 Tubeless radial; 120/70ZR19; 180/55ZR18
Brakes- Front Dual 310mm discs with four-piston calipers Dual 292mm discs with four piston calipers
Brakes- Rear Single 220mm disc with single-piston caliper Single 292mm disc with four piston caliper
Seat height 32.3 inches 26.0 inches
Fuel Capacity 4.8 gallons 3.7 gallons
Dry weight 370 pounds 595.7 pounds
Performance 10.63 @ 130.22mph 11.91 @ 112.6mph
Top speed 165mph 135mph
Retail cost $8499.00 USD $17,995.00 USD

The V-Rod does not impress me. It’s basically a rip off of the Yamaha V-Max, a cheap copy with half the cylinders and no where near the inherent, earned personality. The V-Rod is also a clear example that when it comes to thinking ahead, Harley is still 20 years behind the Japanese.

“You’re trying to compare a Sportster to a “sportbike” is absurd.”

You sure do like the word “absurd”, don’t you? Why is comparing a Sportster to a sportbike absurd when the Sportster is (or rather was) Harley’s version of a “sportbike”? Do you know how you can tell that all the other motorcycle manufacturers have left Harley Davidson behind in the wake of their dust? When Harley owners tell me not only can I not compare an import sportbike to a HD Sportster but that it’s not fair to do so (or in your case, that it is absurd). Oh, how Harley is reaping what it has sowed.

The Harley Sportster is a sportbike, Jethro, or it was about 50 years ago (which is about the time that Harley Davidson started a five decade long slide into mediocrity). The Sportster is / was their bad ass, main muscle bike (until the V-ROD came along) but then someone like you probably thinks that a Sportster is just for those cheaptards who can’t afford a REAL Harley and thus have to buy in at the lowest level for the lifestyle. When I ask why the Sportster hasn’t changed in decades, I’m told by Harley owners “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” Well, if it ain’t broke then why does its broke ass get handed to it by smaller, lighter, faster bikes? The problem with Harley and those who support Harley is that they don’t understand that not only is the Sportster broken, but the whole damn company is broken (and has been since the 1960’s).

The Sportster, not counting the V-Rod, is as close as Harley has ever come to producing a “hot rod” bike. I’m comparing the smallest Honda sportbike made to the smallest Harley Davidson “sportbike” made. It’s not absurd; it’s eye opening and it only goes to show that when it comes to performance, Milwaukee has an incredibly long history of losing and of not being able to produce a powerful bike. It also shows you that while Harley has used the last four decades to trade performance for style, the other manufacturers have continued to advance in the realm of performance so much so that even a lowly 600cc sportbike can beat the largest, most powerful Sportster offered.

Let me put that into perspective for you.

The biggest motored Harley Sportster, the “original” sportbike as buffoons like you seem to refer to it, gets spanked by a modern bike with half of its displacement. If a bone stock 600cc sportbike can beat anything made in Milwaukee, even the biggest and most powerful models, then that tells you a lot about just how far behind the rest of the world that Milwaukee really is. Imagine what kind of ass kicking you would get with a 750cc sportbike, a 900cc sportbike, a 1000cc sportbike or a 1200cc plus sportbike. I have a fast bike but it is certainly not the fastest sportbike in production. There are bigger and badder dragons from the Far East out there and if the best that Harley can produce gets its ass handed to it by a 600cc sportbike, you really don’t want to test your loser against bigger, badder and far faster models of import. I like to use a CBR600RR
to smite pagans like you because it’s so much fun to use something so small to more than adequately prove my point. 

It's a "David and Goliath" type thing I have going on. 

Guess who I am and guess who you are.

“It’s a classic, real world motorcycle that’s been around as a design for decades because like some well designed products, it’s retained it’s popularity for a reason.”

That proves that you are as unfamiliar with Harley Davidson as you are with import sport bikes.  The Sportster is not a classic, real world motorcycle. It is an outdated, obsolete motorcycle that has been relegated to the commercial world of make-believe and fantasy.

A long time ago, the Sportster was actually Harley's bad boy but now it's just the entry level admission ticket to the whole redneck fantasy.  The only reasons why the Sportster has retained its popularity are its relatively low cost, its brand name association and the fact that if you really want to hang with the Harley crowd and be accepted but you don’t have the huge sum of money required to buy a full membership in the flock, then you can still buy in to the cult religion at the base Sportster level (and without requiring you to take out a second mortgage on your double-wide). The Sportster hasn’t changed in decades because Harley Davidson doesn’t know how to change the Sportster. Only recently did they add rubber engine mounts, an engineering staple that the Japanese have had for many years now (so once again, Harley is copying Japan). Until the advent of the V-Rod (which required the Germans to point Milwaukee in the right direction), the Sportster was the bad-boy of the inbred Harley Davidson family line of motorcycles. Big motor in the lightest frame was a recipe for performance … fifty years ago when people still didn’t know all that much about performance. Today, it’s luck if the Sportster can whip up on anything except a badly tuned moped.

The V-Rod is what the Sportster should have been at the end of the 1970’s. The fact that it took until the turn of the 21st century to see the V-Rod reach production doesn’t amaze me as much as it amuses me and points out the fact of just how far behind the rest of the world in engineering and technology that Harley Davidson really is.

The Sportster is the classic example of how to go fast though; take a big engine and put it in a light frame. Too bad the Sportster has never had the suspension or brakes to match the engine but then you can’t expect Harley to think things through all the way, now can you?

What most people don’t know is that the Sportster was itself just a copy of European muscle bikes; so much so that when the first Sportster appeared, it had a gear shift on the same side as the European bikes (and directly opposite that of the rest of the Harley Davidson line). Some like to point out that the Sportster was the first true sportbike but they would be wrong. There were other muscle bikes long before the Sportster; again, the Sportster was merely an American copy of European designs at that time and then there is the fact that Harley Davidson hasn’t really done anything with the Sportster for decades now. All of this points to the fact that when it comes to actual performance, if Harley can’t copy someone else or borrow an engine from them, then it’s a damn good bet that you aren’t going to see anything new or original coming out of Milwaukee. AMF gave Harley the Evolution engine and Porsche gave Harley the Revolution engine. If those two companies hadn’t intervened, Harley would still be building bikes in 2007 that had a life expectancy of about 20,000 miles, more or less and most often it was the less option that the motor decided on. The introduction of the Evolution engine took Harley Davidson from producing a 20,000 mile life expectancy bike to producing 100,000 mile life expectancy bikes. The Revolution engine, courtesy of Porsche, gave at least one model of Harley a set of balls. It’s too bad that the Revolution engine was introduced 30 years after the Japanese had been using similar designs meaning that even though the Revolution engine is “cutting edge” for Harley Davidson, Harley’s “cutting edge” is three decades (or more) behind what the world considers “cutting edge.”

The V-Rod is yet another admission from Harley of their failure to produce a home-grown performance bike. Like their corporate history clearly shows, when the going gets tough for Harley Davidson, they have to rely on others (in this case, it was Porsche) to pull their asses out of the sling. It’s rather obvious to anyone who is willing to step back and look at just how ridiculous, or to use your favorite word, absurd, that Harley Davidson is and how absurd they have become. Once you understand the real history of The Motor Company (as opposed to the shuck and jive that they spoon feed to you), anyone with more than a high school education simply cannot take HD (or its customers) seriously.

“But I’ll tell ya what pal: “Sportbike” riders are just as big a bunch of ASSHOLES as SOME of the people who ride Harleys: STUPID people riding in tennis shoes and shorts, cutting in and out of traffic at 120 mph with their race-boy fantasies.”

Yes, there are a lot of highly visible retards out there riding sportbikes just like there are a lot of highly visible retards out there riding Harley Davidsons. Please don’t fool yourself; shorts, a black HD logo T-shirt, sandals, Oakleys and a chrome, sticker covered Tupperware bowl with a strap are the required riding gear for most HD owners that I see. The main difference between sportbike riders and Harley riders is that we (sportbike riders) make fun of the idiots in our camp and we do everything we can to drive them out of our camp by ridiculing them and making them feel unwelcome. It is a fact that most of these idiots eventually leave the import camp, buy Harleys, and are welcomed with open arms by you and your kind. We say good riddance.

We (the other sportbike riders and I) call these retards “squids” which stands for “Some Quick Unimportant Immature Dumbass”. Squids are made fun of by serious sportbike riders (like me) and they do nothing but give the other sportbike riders a bad image and cause our insurance rates to go up as a group whole. The difference between the sportbike camp and the Harley camp is that sportbike riders aren’t afraid to ridicule and demean the idiots who ride our type of bikes. Harley riders accept all forms of ignorance because if you make fun of the fools in your camp, you risk excommunication from the holy Brotherhood, Sisterhood and The Family.

I see no real difference between a fool on a sportbike (dressed in a sleeveless shirt, shorts and sandals) and a fool on a Harley (dressed in shorts, a sleeveless shirt and sandals). If anything is positive here, it is that sportbike riders work hard to actively drive the retards from their camp where they eventually find a home in the Harley camp (since they aren’t smart enough to realize that they should give up motorcycle riding all together). I’ve known a lot of squids who have emailed me stating that when they owned their sportbike people made fun of them but when they sold their sportbike and bought a Harley that they suddenly found a huge family of friends to belong to.

Imagine that.

Sportbike riders ridicule fools, Harley riders consider them family (and future potential breeding stock).

“Either that, or you cover yourselves in 6 colors of gay leather and plastic boots like some kind of wannabe super-hero.”

Ah, the preprogrammed hillbilly automaton homosexual defense appears in your argument. I don’t wear bright colored leathers, Jethro. I wear black harness boots, blue jeans, a button up shirt, a Joe Rocket black and silver jacket in the winter, Joe Rocket mesh silver and black jacket in the warmer months, Joe Rocket matching gloves and a full face helmet (grey, black and silver). I wear colors that I can move through traffic or a crowd at the mall or do a day’s work at my office in with no problem. I see a lot of sportbikers ride with color matched leathers, I have no problem with that as it tends to increase their visibility especially in daytime traffic conditions. Bright colors aren’t my thing so I don’t surround myself with them but that’s just my personal preference.

On the other hand, I sure do see a lot of Harley owners wearing shorts, sandals, a HD logo T-shirt and what looks like a chrome mixing bowl on top of their heads (often with a lot of comical stickers attached to it … stickers which I guess are there for safety purposes). I didn’t know that a cotton T-shirt offered more protection from road rash than a reinforced, padded leather jacket but then Harley owners have always considered fashion to be a direct substitute for safety.

“You look absolutely ridicules.”

Ridicules”? Is that the lesser well known, younger brother of Hercules? I'll have to go look up "Ridicules" in my encyclopedia of Greek mythology.  Or ... Perhaps what you meant to say is that sportbike riders look “ridiculous”. I’ve always thought that Harley owners were the ones who looked ridiculous with their “fashion is a substitute for safety” outlook in regards to how they dress their selves or the fact that they all look like they chose their clothing from some white trash version of “Garanimals”;

“Honey? Does the bar and shield logo on my boots match up with the bar and shield logo on my chaps? How about my black dealership T-shirt? Can you see the bar and shield logo on my chest? I’ll leave my leather jacket open in front so you can see the bar and shield logo on my T-shirt, that way, people will see the bar and shield logo on my T-shirt as I’m riding towards them and they’ll see the bar and shield logo on the back of my leather jacket as I’m riding away. Oh, I can’t forget my bar and shield logo gloves, my bar and shield logo eye glasses and my bar and shield logo half skull chrome helmet. Did you notice what I did to my helmet? Why, I put a bar and shield logo decal on the front, on the back and one on each side. Why, the only other place I could put a bar and shield logo is if I had it tattooed on my forehead. Yes, it’s really easy to accessorize when you let others choose your clothes for you. In fact, all you have to do is just make sure that the bar and shield logos all go together. Wheee! I’m a big boy now because I’m all dressed just like the picture in the catalog!” - Inbred Jed

Yes, the typical Harley rider is a walking billboard for The Motor Company, slathered from head to foot in logo embossed clothing and lifestyle accessories that trade safety for style. It all screams “Look at me! I own a Harley and I’m better than you because I paid a lot of money to dress this trashy!” All I see on Harleys locally are old farts and fat retards dressed like they were about to go out and cut the grass on a Saturday morning. It gets a bit old after a while especially when your attention is drawn to some logo festooned double chinned redneck stuffed into a pair of leather chaps. We won’t even begin to describe the overweight, bleach-dyed bimbo he calls a wife on the back of his full dresser noise generator, a wife who appears to have dressed out of the same dealership as the guy in front of her. Leather clad Twinkies with a collective IQ to match.

“Maybe the more mature people like a nice comfortable ride in the country on a motorcycle they can actually WORK ON themselves, with some USABLE power.”

You don’t have any usable power, Jethro, we’ve proven that already. Making power is not the same as effectively using that power. Harleys produce some usable power, not a lot, but just enough to move you from point A to point B and to give you some rush of speed (at least until you hit that basement-like 5000 rpm redline and have to shift your archaic transmission up a notch to keep from sending your fast rotating parts into low Earth orbit). It’s not like you really have a lot of power in reserve either. Harleys aren’t high powered bikes by any stretch of the definition. What they lack in power they make up for in noise which seems to not only please the simple minded yokels but also to fool those who are mechanically ignorant. If “fashion is a direct substitute for safety” can be thought of as a mantra for the Harley owner then “noise is power” can also be thought of in the same school of thought.

“Maybe the smarter people buy a Harley, ride it for 8 years, and sell it for what
they paid for it, while you’re ready to replace your ride in a year.”

Oh hell

Let's not go through all of this tired old economic poo-poo again... You know, if you actually believe that bit of laughably retarded financial nonsense then it’s no wonder that you’re dumb enough to own a Harley. Did they tell you that at the stealership or did you hear it from yet another clueless, uneducated mongo-tard who swore allegiance to the Motor Company? Maybe you don’t know the first thing about economics or the value of money which would readily explain why you own a Harley Davidson. The Harley Davidson “resale value” is a common pop-culture myth that I’ve proven untrue many times before. Thanks once again for believing everything that you hear and for being such a good little pre-programmed hillbilly automaton. Willy G. banks on idiots like you to keep him and his partners in business.

If I'm ready to replace my ride in a year, then explain why I've owned my trouble free Honda since 2004 and really don't see parting with it anytime soon?  Maybe I missed that mandatory yearly replacement notice that Honda supposedly mails out at the end of each model year ...

“Maybe the smarter people know that triple chrome plated steel, and timkin roller bearings are superior to chromed plastic crap and non-replaceable plain bearings.”

I’ve owned Hondas since 1980. Never once have I had an engine failure or needed bearings, etc. in any of the bikes that I’ve purchased (and I've flogged some of them pretty damn hard). Never once have I replaced a seal on the forks or the engine. If you know so much about bearings, it’s probably because you’ve actually had to replace them more times than I have. That should tell you something right there, Jethro. Having a bike that you can work on is fine and dandy. I prefer to have a bike that I never need to work on. Low maintenance results in high enjoyment.

“Maybe you don’t actually know what quality actually IS because you buy
a new bike every year.”

I own a Honda, Jethro.  That's "quality" defined.   I don’t have to buy a new bike every year. Hell, I don’t have to buy a new bike every ten years with a Honda. In hindsight, I wish I had kept my ’84 Honda VF500F as I probably would have had close to 200,000 miles on the frame by now.  I might would have had to replace or rebuild the engine around 100,000 miles as it was losing a little bit of compression there at the end (it had over 80,000 miles on it when I traded it in for a brand new 1993 Honda VFR750F). My current Honda will be four years old this June. I plan on keeping her for a lot longer and I see no real problem in doing so. Change the oil, chain, pads, tires, fluids and keep her between the lines on the road and like all of the Hondas before her, she shouldn’t give me the first bit of trouble.

If you want to seriously discuss quality, then you need to actually have experienced quality to begin with. If you measure quality by your experience with Harley Davidson, that’s like measuring ocean cruises by watching “Titanic” and “The Poseidon Adventure.” Once you get tired of constantly working on your bike and replacing bearings (and other parts), maybe you will consider buying a Honda; a bike that doesn’t require near the amount of maintenance that your Harley does. I’m sure that if you can give up your ignorance based brand loyalty (and overcome the programming that you’ve been brainwashed with), then you’ll discover that you can do everything on a Honda that you could on a Harley. You’ll just have less maintenance to worry about and your wallet will be a whole lot fatter for the experience.  Of course, you won't have the friends that you have on your Harley but since you were renting them as well, once you make some real friends you won't miss what you never really had to begin with.

Now, as for why people buy new import bikes each year, well, there is that thing called technology. You see, technology changes each year (in direct contrast to Milwaukee). New designs with new capacity and new power ratings become available, forward thinking and imagination mixed with engineering are all used to create the next generation of world class champion bikes which then trickle down to the street. The reason why someone would buy a new sportbike every year, as you say, isn’t because the bikes wear out but because next year’s bike is going to be better than this year’s bike (an experience you don’t get with Harley’s small selection of offerings and their characteristic stagnation). I’ve documented it on my website here as well that there is a big difference between a 1984 Honda VF500F Interceptor and a 2004 Honda CBR600RR but there is virtually no difference between a 1984 Harley Sportster and a 2004 Harley Sportster (other than price).

There’s an incentive to buy a new sportbike every few years and that incentive is that the breed improves, sometimes gradually and sometimes drastically but it always improves, year after year. Sportbikes evolve every year because they are descended from race track champions. As the manufacturers knowledge of engines, suspensions, brakes, frames, wheels, tires, etc. all evolve, so do the bikes and those evolutionary changes often are directly mirrored in the models which are available for the street. You can’t say that for Harley Davidson which simply turns out tired old copies of the same bikes they were producing decades ago. If you want to live in the past, that’s fine with me, just don’t pretend that you’re the leader and that your designs are superior to everyone else when truth and facts indicate otherwise.

Just because your bike model doesn’t change much, engineering-wise, in thirty years doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s a good design. It might mean that the manufacturer doesn’t know how to make any positive changes to the design or that the rest of the world has left their stupid asses decades behind in the dust.

“You say you don’t care what a bike sounds like. People who appreciate machinery and engines appreciate the sound of an engine believe it or not. You probably have no taste in music either.”

You have taken my words out of context. I don’t care what a Harley sounds like because all that the tired old V-twin produces is noise pollution.  Hearing someone play their Harley at a stoplight is like aural sodomy.  Oh, I love the way that an engine sounds.  Real engines, not irrigation pumps with a cog and a belt slung on them to drive a rear wheel in a slapped together frame down the road.  I love the scream of a turbine spooling up, the sound that a helicopter makes as it powers up to lift off of the hospital landing pad, the sound that an F-16 makes as it does a flyby at an air show. I love the sound of superchargers, turbochargers, fuel injectors, gear drives, small blocks, big blocks, you name it. The only sound in the world that I really can’t stand is the “potato-potato” hoarse cough of a Harley, especially when it is revved repeatedly next to me in traffic for no other reason than the monkey on the ape hangers likes the sound of his own mechanical ineptitude. What kind of performance sound is “potato-potato”? That isn’t the sound of performance. That’s the sound of an asthmatic irrigation pump about to give up the ghost. Harleys don’t have any “performance” sound, the best adjective that you could use to describe the exhaust note of a Harley is the term “rural.”

The sad thing is that you believe that a Harley actually makes a “good” sound when the characteristic Harley sound is itself a byproduct of a laughably poor engineering design. When Harley says that they tune for sound then it is obvious that they aren’t tuning their engines for power. The sound that a Milwaukee V-twin produces is not music, it is noise pollution and I’d get a better resonance with more harmony if I took a five pound sledge, went out to my utility shed, started up my push mower then used the sledge to knock the muffler off of the pull start motor.

Sound is not power.

The sound that a Harley makes is a byproduct of its inferior design. You don’t know how many times I’ve snickered when some moron on a Harley has revved their engine and vibrated the window panes for two blocks around me then roared off with all the grace that fifty-something horsepower in a nine hundred pound bike can produce. The sound that a Harley produces is not a precision sound, it is the sound of mechanical ineptitude, of generations of mechanical inbreeding and of using a design that was flawed from the outset. It is fervent, spastic mechanical masturbation and the sound that a Harley makes has more in common with a bowel movement than an orchestral movement. If you think that the sound that a Harley makes is anything other than noise pollution, then you have no right to even begin to question me on my taste in music.
 Uneducated simpletons like you wouldn’t know the difference between synchronized bar room farting and Mozart.

“Sportbikes sound like sewing machines unless you wind the crap out of them.”

I like the way that my sportbike sounds because it is QUIET ninety percent of the time.  Even idling in front of a restaurant or business, you can't hear it inside the establishment and it doesn't disturb people nearby.  The two adages that I live by are "with great power comes great responsibility" and "walk softly and carry a big stick."

Yes, I hum through traffic like a sewing machine and that is just the way that I want to travel. I don’t disturb people in the car next to me or behind me in traffic. I don’t drown out their stereo or hurt their ears because I think that I should be paid attention to on my rolling strap-on. The problem here is that you are the one who doesn’t recognize the sound of performance. Open pipes on an engine that has its roots tied to farm equipment is not the sound of performance. An American built air cooled V-twin sucking air and fuel through a Japanese built carburetor, with two coffee can sized pistons racing along at a snail-like 5000 RPM and blowing its flatulence through open pipes is not the sound of high performance; it is the sound of mechanical ineptitude. People like you don’t understand performance or engineering or technology because you are simple minded. Comparing the sound that a Harley makes to the sound that a sportbike makes is like comparing the sound that a tired old yellow school bus makes to the sound that a brand new Ferrari makes.

“You don’t like Harleys so……..DON’T BUY ONE!”

Hmmm.  Wow.  That has to be the lamest approach to problem solving ever.  If you see something that's obviously wrong then the way to solve the problem is by not doing it and ignoring those who do.
  Yeah, your style of problem solving really works, Jethro.  Don't worry, you're not the first to try this angle which means that not only are you not smart enough to have thought of it by yourself, you're just falling into the Harley template.  I get this line of reasoning a lot from Harley owners and it shows a great naiveté for basic problem solving.  I was taught, in school, that as an American if I ever saw something wrong that I should do something about it.  Standing by and not pointing out how ridiculous Harley Davidson really is or the kind of stupid, silly myths that hillbillies like you believe in would be doing my American birthright a great injustice especially when Harley Davidson draws so heavily on the good old Red, White and Blue.

I love this simpleton logic; if you don't like something bad then don't do it.  It's not that you should do anything about whatever it is that is bad, you should just ignore it and let other people keep on doing it.  Imagine how far in the hole America would be today if the "war on drugs" had begun with the slogan and attitude of "if you don't like illegal drugs then .... DON'T DO ILLEGAL DRUGS !"  It's not that you shouldn't buy any of Harley Davidson's products, it's that Harley Davidson is wrong and should be punished, not rewarded.  Harley Davidson is a failure and, if I remember right, America never supported or encouraged failure even when it became such a trendy part of the prevalent idiotic pop culture.  I guess the fact that we reward failure and punish success these days is itself a form of failure in our society.  Failure breeds failure, especially when it is rewarded, glorified and worshipped.  Harley is a perfect example of everything that is wrong with our (once) great society.

I don’t like HarleysI have never bought a Harley Davidson and I never will because I understand what Harley stands for.  I understand their pseudo-patriotic marketing, I understand their lackluster products and it sickens me that a company with the long history of ineptitude and failure that HD has is allowed to prosper in our society.  I'm too smart to own a Harley Davidson and the thought of owning a Harley (and being associated with people as dumb as you) makes me want to go take a two hour bath because that's how long it would take to scrub all of the dumb off of me.

I don't own a Harley because I understand the history of the company.  I don't own a Harley because I see through all of the marketing BS that has allowed Harley Davidson to survive in a niche market populated by patriotic dullards and idiots who think they can buy their birthright and sew it on a leather vest.  I don't own a Harley Davidson because I understand that a Harley Davidson is not a real motorcycle; it is a toy at best, a fashion accessory for the mentally retarded otherwise. 

Now that I understand Harley Davidson, I’m going to educate other people so that they can make a rational, informed decision on whether or not to buy a Harley.  If you want to buy a Harley, I have no problem with that.  However, if you buy a Harley because it is American made or because you think you are supporting America or because you think that it is a great bike, then I have news for you and it isn't very good news.  Harley is a lifestyle, not a motorcycle. Harleys are purchased by people who value being seen far more than actually riding (if they do any riding at all).  Harleys are purchased by people who could never get noticed on their own without a Harley.  However, the one determining factor the prevents me from ever owning a Harley Davidson is the fact that I have a college education with a bachelor of science degree in business. With my college degree in hand, I am totally immune to the brainwashing that Harley Davidson’s marketing department employs to secure its customer base.

“Harleys can be worked on, repaired, rebuilt, and easily modified by their owners.”

Harleys can be worked on, repaired, rebuilt and modified by their owners because they HAVE to be worked on, repaired, rebuilt and modified by their owners.  Harleys are high maintenance (kind of like most of the women who ride on the back of them).  This means that when a Harley owner has to work on their bike a lot then that work is work that would be unnecessary if they had purchased a much better built, better engineered and better designed import bike.

Excessive upkeep is toil.

Toil is stupid.

“Half the “Harleys” you see and mock, have big inch engines that will leave your buzzing little four cylinder in the dust with even down shifting. 120 horsepower (routine these days) and 200 foot pounds of torque BELOW 4,000 rpm kind of makes “Sportbike” peak horse power look silly. Obviously you have NO idea what real torque feels like.””

Wow.  Your ignorance is utterly staggering.  I stand in utter fucking awe at the dark shadow cast by our mountain of stupidity.  Obviously you have NO idea what you are talking about.
  You claim that half of the Harleys out there are packing engines that produce twice the horsepower and torque that the most powerful stock Harley V-twin produces (not counting the V-Rod which really isn't a HD engine at all) and you say that it is routine that one out of every two Harley's on the road are making this kind of power?  Where do these special Harleys come from with the magic motors in them if they don't come from the dealership?

I guess that I am supposed to be impressed with 120 horsepower and 200 foot pounds of torque below 4000 RPM?  Why would those kind of numbers ever make sportbike peak horsepower and torque look silly when all you have is about two grand more in rpm ceiling before you run out of steam?  Bone stock Yamaha R1s (1000cc) are making over 180 horsepower with probably half of your displacement but I doubt even they are making a hundred ft-lbs of torque.  You say that there are V-twins out there making 200 foot pounds of torque?  Those must be some pretty bad ass engines since a completely stock Suzuki Hayabusa is pushing about 172hp and 102 ft-lbs of torque (and if you bolt on a turbo kit for the Suzuki Hayabusa, you can expect to up the horsepower to 307hp and the torque to 170 ft-lbs).  So, if I'm understanding you correctly, you're saying that one out of every two Harleys on the road right now is packing 30 ft-lbs more torque than a turbocharged Hayabusa? 

Oh, I seriously doubt that! 

I got curious and started looking up some engines for "Harleys."  Wow.  I found a 130 cubic inch Ultima Long Rod 130 engine over at Dumbassbiker.com and it was rated at 150 horsepower and 160 ft-lbs of torque (that's still 40 ft-lbs shy of your claim).  How much did this engine cost?  Only $7400.00 (on sale!).  Regular price was $8595.00.  This engine, on sale, cost as much as my entire bike did brand new.  What that means is that to come anywhere near the level of performance I have, you have to throw out the Milwaukee built paint shaker and drop in a pro-built aftermarket engine that costs as much as my bike does brand new and is still just an air cooled V-twin.  Can you begin to understand why I make fun of people like you?

I have two things to say regarding your overly asinine statement:

1) That has to be some monumentally good crack that you are smoking there, Jethro, but I seriously doubt that it can be really good for your health in the long run.  Judging from the content of your email, you only have a handful or so of properly functioning brain cells left and if I were you, I'd protect those babies for all they were worth.  In your case, I'd suggest an athletic supporter / cup would probably be all the protection you would need.

2)  I have really got to put in a stipulation that you cannot be stoned out of your retarded hillbilly mind when you send me email as it would really cut down on people like you sending me the kind of laughable nonsense that you have sent me.

I swear, with the staggering amount of undiluted bullshit that you’ve loaded your email with I’m going to need two hours, a bulldozer and a high pressure water hose to get the stink out of my inbox …

“90 percent of the Harley Davidson motorcycles ever made are still on the road.”

... Yes and the other 10 percent made it home under their own power.

That was just too easy but then you deserved that sharp jab for using lemming logic and pop-culture marketing myths to support your rapidly failing argument. What is it with you talking out of your ass about nonsensical percentages? First you say that half of the Harleys out there are packing more torque than an aftermarket prepped turbocharged Suzuki Hayabusa then you say that nine out of ten Harleys ever made are still on the road?  If we take your numbers at face value, I guess then that nine out of ten Harley Davidsons ever produced (all the way back to 1903) are still on the road today and that 50% of those Harleys on the road (including half of the 1903 models) are routinely making 120 horsepower and 200 ft-lbs of torque, right? 


You'd have to be dumber than bundt cake to believe either of those ridiculous statements but to actually believe both of them at the same time?  Damn.  Saying those two statements back to back in an email to me qualifies you as one of the dumbest people on Earth which means that yes, you are a true 1%er but it's the lowest 1% of the human race that you belong to (and not the top 1% like you would like to think you do).

Nine out of ten Harleys ever produced are still on the road today and half of those are really putting out some serious power?  This means that out of the ninety percent of the 1903 single cylinder, bicycle frame based Harley Davidsons that are still on the road, half of the owners have traded out the single cylinder engines for a big bore high performance V-twin?  I wonder how they got the bicycle frame to handle all of that torque without twisting up like a pretzel?  I wonder what it would be like to ride a 1903 Harley making that kind of power on those hoola-hoop type wheels and white Schwinn style rubber tubeless tires?

So, Byrdbrain here says that  9 out of 10 Harleys ever made are still on the road and half of those Harleys are packing engines belting out 120 horsepower and 200 ft-lbs of torque? Do you people see why I make fun of idiots who try to defend Harley Davidson let alone those who actively believe and perpetuate the myths?

I mean, we’re just going on what this ass muppet here claims is the truth  Let's put his statements in the old Acme BS Detectometer and see how they rate.



I’m definitely going to have to call "bullshit !" on this bit of common place idiocy.

Now, dear reader, I’d like to take the next few minutes of your valuable time to debunk this often quoted yet completely non-provable pop-culture myth. The popular myth clearly states that nine out of EVERY ten Harley Davidsons EVER MADE are still on the road today. Does anyone out there with an IQ greater than their shoe size see the obvious error in that line of thinking? If this pop-culture myth is true, then that means that nine out of every ten 1903 Harley Davidsons (the bicycle with the single cylinder engine attached) that were ever produced are not only still running today but they have tags, inspection stickers, insurance and they’re on the highways of America! Harley Davidson is a little over a hundred years old and the lemmings who worship it claim this bit of ridiculous nonsense?! How anyone with a simple understanding of entropy could buy into this is beyond me but it shows you just how stupid and gullible the typical Harley owner is.

1903 Harley Davidson single cylinder. 
According to Byrdbrain here, 9 out of 10 of these Schwinn-wannabes built in 1903 are still on
the road today and half of those have been retrofitted with really big, powerful V-twins!  Right.

I think that Stephen Jay Gould got it right when he said "The most erroneous stories are those we think we know best - and therefore never scrutinize or question."  Saying that 90 percent of all Harley Davidsons ever made are still on the road today is nothing but seriously advanced mental retardation of Old Testament proportions and only a complete and utter moron would ever believe such laughable nonsense (and only someone even dumber would ever say it in the first place). Ford Motor Company was also started in 1903, the same year that Harley Davidson was started. Hmmm.  Let's think about it this way … if a Ford fan were to walk up to you on the street and claim that “90 percent of the Fords ever made are still on the road today” would you believe them?

No, because you would know right away that he was a liar.

How many pre-1960 Fords do you see on the road today? Hardly any. You might see some in the junkyard or restored at car shows but you don’t see them on the road driving around everywhere.  When was the last time you got into bumper to bumper traffic and had a Model T Ford next to you?  Do you think that 9 out of 10 Model Ts are still on the road today?  You wouldn’t even think about checking the Ford owner's ridiculous statement to see if it was factual or not because you would know that nine out of ten Fords ever produced are just simply not to be found still operating on the roads today. Yet, when some ignorant Harley owner makes the “nine out of ten” or “ninety percent” claim, no one stands up to them at such a laughable bit of nonsense.  No one steps boldly into their face and yells at the top of their lungs “I CALL UTTER AND COMPLETE BULLSHIT ON THAT ASININE STATEMENT!”

I would and I have called several Harley owners on that bit of ridiculousness repeatedly. You should see the look on a Harley owner’s face when he says something like that and I call them on it when we're in a group of riders or hot rod enthusiasts.  It's a load of fun demanding that the Harley owner present proof of their statement and then laughing at them when they hem and haw because they can’t prove its true. The most common response when you back them into a corner and hold them to their statement? “Well, that’s what I done heard was true …” Usually their reply is said with a really sheepish tone.

Sure, nine out of ten Harleys made last year are still on the road today.  Ten years ago?  Maybe.  Thirty years ago?  I wouldn't say that with any degree of certainty.  There is no possible way that nine out of every ten Harley Davidson “motorcycles” ever built are still on the road today. Simply no effing possible way. Before the late 1970's and early 1980's, Harleys mechanical reliability was substandard at best and that's being really polite.  I’ve seen too many of these trailer queens on blocks in trailer parks or rusting in backyards and salvage yards to know that this myth is simply untrue.

What is so incredible is that, like so much of the Harley Davidson mythology, this laughable bit of hillbilly logic is stated as established fact yet it cannot be proven and not one Harley owner in the world can present facts to substantiate this claim with any amount of validity. They can’t show you over a hundred years of production figures and department of transportation records to prove that there actually are ninety percent of all Harleys ever made still running up and down America’s roads. They can’t and this bit of “fact” is nothing other than passed on hear-say and pop-culture myth.

Nine out of every ten Harleys ever made … my rather large and bulbous chrome plated, tassel bedecked scrotum.  Chevrolet, Ford, BMW, Ferrari ... I don’t know of any manufacturer in the world who can claim that 90 percent of everything that they ever made is still in use today unless it’s maybe that poor old bored guy who is the Maytag Repairman …


Maytag ?

Maytag !

Hey !

I’ve got a great idea !

If it takes a company known for making bowling balls (AMF) to give Harley Davidson the Evolution engine design and if it takes a company known for making German sports cars (Porsche) to give Harley Davidson the Revolution engine design and if Harley really wants to live up to the claim that 90 percent of all of its bikes produced are still on the road today, then Harley should go into a joint engineering venture with Maytag. Think about it, dear readers! Harley builds the frames and Maytag builds the power trains (which really wouldn't be all that different than how the V-Rod is built now).

Maytag would be a great co-op venture for Harley Davidson since both companies are traditional American companies with over a hundred years of experience each in their respective fields (Maytag was formed in 1907, just four short years after Harley Davidson was formed). Yes, Maytag could design, engineer and produce a contemporary power train for Harley’s newest power sport model, the VCLM (Very Clean Low Maintenance) 1200R (Radial) “Spin-cycle”.  The one draw back to this new model is that it will be one of the quietest models produced by Harley (and the one with the cleanest emissions).

Of course, the Harley Davidson – Maytag (HDMT) built VCLM “Spin-cycle” will be powered by the brand new radial hub mounted “Agitator” engine (more properly termed the “Direct Drive Infinite Speed Motor” by the Maytag design team).  The rider must, of course, be sure to clean out the lint trap on the exhaust before each ride otherwise there is the risk of a fire.  The suspension would be fully adjustable from delicates to knits to colors and whites. Colors for the new HDMT Spin-cycle could be chosen from Artic Blue, Artic Blue with Chrome, Black, Black with Chrome, White, White on White, and White with Chrome (or about four times the colors that HD currently offers). Of course, it will be offered in two models; top load (for traditional seating) and front load (for those of you who want to jump over the handlebars and right into the saddle).

Going to Maytag’s current website and looking under their “laundry” section of equipment, I find that they sell their products by the marketing tagline of:

Tough machines. Unparalleled performance.

Boy, Harley Davidson could use some of their marketing moxie but unfortunately while Maytag can get away with making a bold statement like this, Harley Davidson never could (at least not without Willie G.’s nose growing straight out Pinocchio style by about a good 18 inches in length).

“Harleys do NOT depreciate.”

Yes, Harleys DO depreciate, Jethro.  Sigh.  Every fucking thing in the world depreciates at one point or another (unless you live in a make-believe fantasy world).  I swear sometimes the only reason why I think Harley is such a commercial success is the fact that so few people truly understand simple economics these days.  The value of a Harley Davidson is not driven by the craftsmanship or the engineering that goes into the final product, it is driven by the pop-culture myths and the perception of the items "worth." The “value” of a Harley Davidson is based on its popularity, not its actual worth.  Supply and demand also work hard in this equation. The point is that Harley Davidsons are priced based on their perceived worth, not their actual worth (which is much, much less). In the years to come, you will find that Harley Davidsons fall in price, especially as the core market for HD, the Baby Boomers, grow too old to ride (and thus support Harley’s fragile marketing bubble which they based almost entirely upon one aging generation of Americans).

If you want to find out about how bad Harleys depreciate, just ask my coworker. He bought a $24,000 anniversary edition Night-Train for $12,000 and it only had 3000 miles on it. The bike was bone stock, perfect condition, not a nick or scratch on it and with the original tires and fluids still on / in the bike. I’d say that was 50% depreciation for an almost brand new bike and that all coming within two years of it being sold brand new. All things depreciate, especially Harleys which have their values driven by market demand and not actual physical worth. Already we’re seeing the long lines at the stealerships dry up and excess stock start to litter the showroom floors. This has the hillbillies in Milwaukee really concerned as they’ve always had waiting lists and now it is the dealer who is waiting months to sell the Harley (rather than it being the customer who is waiting to buy the Harley). Harley has ridden a nice bubble but it is a bubble after all, a short term joy ride that will only end in tragedy and sorrow. They teach you these things in business courses in college but then I forget that people like you never went to college (which is another one of the primary reasons why you own a Harley Davidson).

“Your plastic coated, peaky little wunder-bike is predictably as obsolete and disposable the year after you buy it as a Bic lighter. They don’t even make the engines rebuildable and they’re all used up after only 25,000 miles.”

If sportbike engines are only good for 25k miles, and they aren’t “rebuildable,” then my 1984 Honda VF500F Interceptor (which had 88k miles on it) must have been well into its fourth engine replacement when I traded it in on a newer model way back in 1993. I’ve said it before and I firmly believe it. Harleys sell because stupid people are attracted to them and we all know that, unfortunately, the stupid people in life far outnumber the smart people which I guess is why Harley Davidson continues to sell so many bikes (and lifestyle accessories) from year to year.

As far as longevity, I plan on keeping my ’04 CBR600RR as long as I can, ten years at least. I see no reason to replace it when it does perfectly fine as a primary mode of transportation.  The only thing I can think of trading it in for would be another Honda and I'm kind of fond of the new VFR series, especially the variant with the anti-lock brakes.  I'd give up some of my raw performance for the added safety of the VFR Interceptor's ABS system.  As for Harleys and their longevity, well, you kind of expect that something descended from a farm tractor engine would last a long time.  I mean ... how often do you really have to rebuild what amounts to an irrigation pump.  Belt drive?  Come on... belt drive is so ... rural.  I'd say shaft drive but we all know that the only thing at a Harley dealership that is shaft driven is the customer.

So, import engines are all used up after 25,000 miles? Crap. I’ve got over 17,000 trouble free miles on my Honda right now. I guess if I want to keep it a full ten years then I better ration out the last remaining 8,000 miles and pace myself otherwise I better start to save up for that new motor once the old clock hits 25k …

It's interesting you should compare motorcycles to lighters and especially since you compare my type of motorcycle to a Bic lighter.  Truth be known, I'd lot rather have a Bic lighter in my pocket than I would carry around two stones that I had to strike together in order to make sparks and start a fire.  The comparison between the Bic lighter and the stones is about as close as you'll get to comparing a sport bike to a Harley Davidson.  Thank you for providing the material for that visual.

“I’ve seen Harleys with over a hundred thousand miles on them without a rebuild, and more than 250,000 miles on them when they’ve been rebuilt.”

Is that “ridden” miles or “towed” miles. There is a difference, you know. Harleys tend to last longer when they’re towed everywhere and smooth roads are better than bumpy roads because the pieces don’t fall off as fast when you haul your Harley Davidson down a smooth road.  I guess that's why so many Harley owners tow their Harleys in enclosed trailers ... that way, when you open the door all the pieces are right there on the floor for you to pick up and put back on.

“So tell me how smart you are speed-racer boy: The kind of idiocies frequently displayed by sportbike riders on public roads, make you idiots first in line for Darwin awards.”

The idiocy that you’ve displayed in your email makes you first in line for a brain transplant.  I'd suggest a hamster but swapping your brain with that of a hamster would double your IQ and result in one seriously retarded hamster (which I think could get you in a whole heap of trouble with the SPCA).

“You’re really the wanna-be.”


Because I'm well educated and you're not?

Because I think original thoughts and you do not?

Because I research my facts before I make a decision while you simply accept anything that you're told at face value?

Because I ride a quality built bike that doesn’t define who or what I am and you ride a pop culture icon?

Because I’m the same person on my bike as I am on and off or even without my bike?

Because I choose not to advertise for free for a company that charges me for the right to advertise for them?

Because I actually ride a real motorcycle and not a huge, rumbling chrome plated strap on replacement for the penis that God never gave me?

Maybe when you realize just how big a fantasy and make-believe lifestyle Harley Davidson really is, you’ll discover who the real wannabe is. Or, maybe I could just save you a whole lot of trouble and hard thinking and tell you to step in front of a mirror and take a good, long look at what a silly poser lifestyle you lead and what a laughable poser bike you ride. I’m sorry, Jethro, but after understanding just what a monumental joke Harley Davidson is, and what a monumental insult to America that it has become, I really can’t take anyone on a Harley seriously.  After reading your email and noting all of your ignorant statements, I've reached the same conclusion about you as well.

“Tell me about riding: I’ve put in more than a thousand miles a day on my 1200 sportster based chopper. You’d be BLEEDING on a "sportbike" buddy.”

Well, I used to put about 700 miles a day on some of my power tours on my ’95 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R and that bike was about as uncomfortable of a sportbike as you could get (at the time) and I had no problems putting that kind of mileage on it. I see no problem with riding my CBR600RR a thousand miles in one day. I ride it 75 plus miles to work and back every day and it’s far more uncomfortable than my ZX-6R ever was.

Do you know why Harleys are big?  So that fat ass retards can ride them and won't get piles at the end of the day.  For the non-fat people out there, a sportbike is a viable option but if your fat ass is so big that it can almost be classed as a "double-wide" then yeah, a Harley is about your only choice if you want to move around on two wheels.

“Go get a fucking membership card and RACE on a legitimate track if that’s the kind of riding you value. That is ALL your "sportbike" is really good for.”

Ah, yes, the “sportbikes only have one speed and that is wide open” line of hillbilly logic. Just to let you in on a bit of education … my Honda CBR600RR serves just fine as a daily commuter on the highway and in city traffic.  The throttle works both ways, Jethro. 

I don't need a membership card to own or ride my bike.  Membership is what Harley Davidson sells, it's the price of admission into your full of pretend lifestyle.  Individuality is what the import manufacturers sell.

“If I had a nickel for every knee dragging idiot I’ve seen riding like an ass in nothing but a bathing suit and beach sandels, I’d have enough money to replace a set of chromed plastic Japanese turn signals.”

Since a set of chromed plastic turn signals go for about $12 from most cycle parts houses, that isn’t a whole lot of sportbike riders that you’ve seen. On the other hand, if I had a nickel for every pot bellied, triple chinned, mouth breathing, flag slathered idiot Harley rider who ever sent me email using tired old clichés to defend their pathetic lifestyle choices then I could probably retire 20 years earlier than I normally would.

“Japanese “Sportbikes” are not designed to do anything but attain maximum and maintain velocity on a race track.”


Ignorance is cute, to a point, then it just becomes really, really fucking tedious to wade through. Really, really fucking tedious. Your ignorance is also painful to anyone with an IQ higher than their shoe size. People like you really, really should come with warning labels on your forehead that state:


“They’re ugly, uncomfortable, cheaply made, have no usable low end torque, have no lasting value, and the people who ride them kill themselves at an alarming rate because they’re stupid, immature people, with no sense of what it means to just lay back and enjoy the scenery on two wheels.”

Sportbikes are aerodynamic, close tolerance, precision made high performance machines which can rival the work of Swiss watch makers. They are high performance marriages of exotic materials and forward thinking (two things Milwaukee knows nothing about). Sportbikes have a throttle (as opposed to Harleys which have a volume control knob) which works both ways. My ’04 Honda CBR600RR has plenty of torque down low; in fact, I have no problem riding my CBR600RR at low speeds. You claim that sportbike riders are stupid and immature but you’ve done nothing in this argument to prove that you’re anything but what you refer to other people as. You don’t understand engineering, competition, performance, physics or even how a motorcycle works yet you throw out laughably inaccurate myths and completely erroneous mathematics to prove your point.

The only truly ugly thing in your life is your ignorance.

In summation:

Cheaply made.
Obsolete almost immediately.
Ridden by adolecent morons with speed-racer fantasies.
Sound like more like appliances than motorcycles.
Parts are obscenely expensive.
NOT a bike that can be easily worked on by the owner.
Fragile parts and plastic.
Uncomfortable as hell.
Unstable (Twitchy) in a straight line.
Useless powerbands.
Ridden by more soon to be dead people than any other
kind of motorcycle.
Ugly looking.

In summation?

Perhaps what you meant to really say was “based solely on my nigh on unforgivable ignorance and my glaring stupidity my absolutely idiotic opinion of sport bikes is as follows” which would have been a far more truthful admission than simply saying “in summation.” Reading your summary of sport bikes reminded me of a great quote from Wayne Dyer which says; "The highest form of ignorance is when you reject something you don't know anything about." and trust me, Jethro, you've proven in spades that you don't know the first thing about sport bikes or motorcycles in general.

Now, since you've summarized sport bikes, allow me to retort upon Harley Davidsons:

Produced by a long line of inter-related hillbillies.

Designs haven't changed in almost four decades (not because they're good designs but because the company is stagnant)

Creating "new" models involves swapping existing parts around from one old model to another old model in a bizarre semblance of mechanical inbreeding. Model letters and prices are jumbled and that is about the only change that truly occurs.

Traded lackluster engineering for characteristic styling in the 1960's and never changed back.

Believe that performance is a byproduct of sound and actually tune their engines for a particular, easily recognizable exhaust note sound rather than for any noticeable power.

Actually tried to trademark the sound of their engines, when the sound is the byproduct of a patently inferior design to begin with.

Believe that fashion is a direct substitute for safety.

Ridden by geezers, posers, yuppies and wannabes who think they can actually buy a reputation rather than have to earn it.

Sound more like a piece of antiquated farm equipment than a motorcycle.

Their "performance" sound is best described by using the name of a common vegetable.

Performance parts are obscenely expensive and have to be purchased if the user wants any kind of noticeable performance out of their bike.

Are bikes that can be easily worked on by the owner because they have to constantly be worked on by the owner.

Use Japanese-built carburetors, brakes, shocks and forks (and probably electronics).

Their most powerful domestic performance model is powered by an import built engine.

Riders look more like they're being examined at the OB-GYN clinic than going out for a ride.

Unstable (Twitchy) in curves or when leaning to far to one side.

Unstable at high speed.

Powerbands that would make a big yellow school bus seem like a Formula 1 race car by comparison.

Ridden by more ignorant, uneducated, uninformed, unendorsed, myth-believing retards who should never, ever be allowed on a motorcycle in the first place.

Styling that was last considered "contemporary" sometime during the Korean War.

I doubt you’ve ever even ridden a big V-twin.

I’ve ridden quite a few. I'd say "thank you" at the end of that statement except that none of the Harleys that I ever rode inspired anything other than loathing and fear for my safety. None of the big V-twins impressed me very much though I will profess a curious desire to own a V-twin powered Suzuki TL1000R sport bike. I prefer four cylinders when it comes to riding and performance applications. “V-Twin” is just a fancy term to admit that all you’ve really got is two cylinders and when you think about it, that’s just one cylinder more than your average lawn mower.

That about covers it.

Yes, if stupidity and ignorance can be considered "covered" then I think you've done your part. Thanks for the email and for giving us such fine examples of each intellectual malady!

Have a nice day (and remember to recycle). –Byrdman

Have a nice day, Jethro (and remember: it's never too late to get a quality education). - Christopher

Afterthought- When you finally get tired of playing make-believe and dress-up with all of the other hillbillies in your trailer park, your friendly local Honda dealer will be all too happy to sell you a low maintenance, high performance, high quality, well built motorcycle that is wonderfully free of all the silly white trash rhetoric and mentally retarded nonsense that goes along with owning and riding a Harley Davidson. Maybe if you spent as much on your own education as you spent on your motorcycle you'd be a smarter man.