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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Took a nice little day ride down to the Wheels Through Time museum down in Maggie Valley yesterday. I have rode by it about a dozen time in a cage and bike and never had time to stop by so me and the better half rode on down to check it out. Very cool place and if you have never been then you need to. The owner was there and he fired up a few bikes and took one of the 100+ year old bikes for a spin! The biggest downside I found of the place is that the owner only keeps American made bikes. I am all for anything American made but I love all kinds and makes of bikes and was hoping to see some old Nortons, Triumphs, etc. There was also maybe 50 bikes in the parking lot, all HD except for my Vic and somebody had a Vision tucked under a shade tree. I could not believe the sea of HD shirts on the people in the museum! I thought they all looked funny dressing the same and I guess me and the better half stuck out since we both wear mesh riding pants with shorts underneath (took off riding pants and put in saddlebags) and I was wearing an old polo style shirt. I did get some very good compliments from my XR though with one guy coming up to me at MickeyD's and was nice enough to ask permission if he can go out get a close up look at my bike. On a side not I filled up while down there and got 47.5 mpg's!! Most of the tank was the ride down there and mostly interstate doing 70 mph or so but thought that was interesting since my best so far has been 43. I think the bike is getting broken in plus the warmer temps is helping the mpg's inch up some.
 

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I want to get downthere sometime myself. He has a good friend in Red Boiling Springs TN with a museum as well. the na,e of the place is Cyclemos. Super nice guy.
 

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So if you want to see a broader cross section of motorcycling history, 30 bucks gets you a membership in AMCA, the Antique Motorcycle Club of America. Dale should have told you guys that when you were at the museum but anyway.

AMCA has chapters all over the country that sponsor local and regional events. Those events draw some iron you just will never see otherwise. Then there are a few major events like Rhinebeck in the Hudson River Valley, and Davenport in Iowa (which got big enough to get all bolloxed up in politics but still is a great take). The regional in Florida has some good import iron I guess because retirees from all over the world land there and bring stuff with them.

So, probably 75 or 80 percent of the iron is American but they are 50+ years old and pre '63 there just wasn't that much offshore iron in the states. Some though, and it is represented. Plus, Europeans, who love their collections, don't bat an eye at freighting in some of their prize stuff to show it off (and horsetrade for rare American stuff to take back across the pond).

My favorite bit is getting gussied up in period correct duds and putting the old oil burners through their paces in closed course competition.

Get a membership, you will get a newsletter IDing local happenings, and there is info on the website.

You mention a sea of Harley shirts at WTT. You are going to see those shirts anywhere antique bikes are. Folks, Pop included, tend to make fun of Harleytude but for a fair percentage of them it includes a reverence for the old iron and it is not lost on those people that, like so many things, if the gummint and the safety nazis were reviewing applications to put motorcycles on the road for the first time now, no way Jose! Motorcycles are accepted because of the history. They were, so they are. Without that history, we would be talking about iPhones and Google Glass or the Harlem shuffle or L'il Kim or some other 21st century disposable crap pastime.

You can't go wrong going to WTT and other museums though. Dale is one of the rare ones that made a couple of bucks preserving the history of motorcycling. There are all kinds of guys and ladies out there who dedicated their lives to preservation and dumped all their cash into that well with not much to show for it but a barn full of rusty iron. Most folks think they are crazy. Some of us think they are rich beyond words.
 

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like so many things, if the gummint and the safety nazis were reviewing applications to put motorcycles on the road for the first time now, no way Jose! Motorcycles are accepted because of the history. They were, so they are. Without that history, we would be talking about iPhones and Google Glass or the Harlem shuffle or L'il Kim or some other 21st century disposable crap pastime.
Personally, I find the environments associated with much of that disposable music FAR more dangerous than going out for a putt. But if your assertion is correct that we can only ride our dangerous machines now because that mode of transportation has been "grandfathered in," how can you explain the gov't being okay with sky diving, bungee jumping, or the MMA cage matches (to say nothing of 300 million guns available to anyone at will, a perpetual state of war, and the introduction of Fiats to our highways)?
 

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There is an interesting article about a woman that did a solo ride of 5000 miles back in the 20s. Man that took some serious courage. Pretty interesting how motorcycles still look oretty close esoecially those made in the 50s.


Love museums.
 

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Took a nice little day ride down to the Wheels Through Time museum down in Maggie Valley yesterday.
I'd heard Wheels through Time was moving out of Maggie Valley, which would be a shame.I rode out there 3 summers ago,great museum in a beautiful setting.Any Vics on display there yet?
I was still on a Harley then.The 1st Vision I ever saw was over @ Deals Gap the day before,14 mos. later I'm on one.
 

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Personally, I find the environments associated with much of that disposable music FAR more dangerous than going out for a putt. But if your assertion is correct that we can only ride our dangerous machines now because that mode of transportation has been "grandfathered in," how can you explain the gov't being okay with sky diving, bungee jumping, or the MMA cage matches (to say nothing of 300 million guns available to anyone at will, a perpetual state of war, and the introduction of Fiats to our highways)?
Skydiving- grandfathered similarly by history with military cache (at least more cache than motorcycles) to boot.
Bungee- they aren't OK with it. Try to open a bungee park. It can be done. So can opening a white likker distillery legally. The odds are about the same.
MMA- Two of those M's are media and money and the third is leverage. If it wasn't the millions ginned up by the sportotanment biz to get this shlock PPV'ed it would be, along with womens B ball and soccer on the same circuit as midget bowling. Pop is actually a boxing fan so I would appreciate it if you don't pour more salt on that wound.
Guns- there's an app for that.
War- bipedal anthropoids. Opposable thumbs for grasping the club and erect posture for chasing down the other guy to beat him about the head with the club and taking what he has, whatever it is.
Fiat- well, if a foreign motorcycle manufacturer owned 20 percent of Chrysler, I will grant you that the odds of them getting approval to put bikes on American roads would be significantly improved history notwithstanding.

Why are we having this point, counterpoint?

So anyone, even the big money in the beltway types comes to the NHTSA with a proposal to put a vehicle on the same roads that they remind us all are a privilege for us to pay for and use that
does not meet the intent of the implemented rules systematically put in place since Nader's Unsafe at any Speed gave them a mandate to punish three generations with
offers more horsepower and speed per pound than practically all motor vehicles
does not neatly conform to EPA guidelines
requires a steep learning curve often fraught with injury
offers zero onboard safety
operates well above legal speed limits not only easily but optimally
requires 100 percent operator concentration
requires operator physical strength
requires operator balance
is prized by teenagers for the least societally acceptable reasons
ejects the operator and passenger as a matter of course in practically any situation
invites modifications that enhance the least societally acceptable results
advertises it's value as a tool to defy the rules and regulations so zealously developed and enforced by the agencies that have to approve its use
with the exception of LE duties works to avoid being seen as a product of utility
and the beat goes on...


I sing the praises of all of the above but for every bungee park that gets approved there are a zillion that don't and a bazillion more fun yet lethal ideas that do not get a chance in the marketplace.

Bikes exist because they come from a time they filled a need and if a few citizens got snuffed in the deal that was the price. We were big boys and girls and it wasn't mommies job to protect us from ourselves. Today we are idiots and thank gawd mommy is looking out for us or we wouldn't be able to dress ourselves. No way that scoots jibe with that. Mommy loves little Johny and sometimes when she says no it is for his own good.

The fact that motorcycling is a multibillion dollar industry is what keeps it viable. But all that money would be being spent elsewhere in the absence of the machines.
 

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Why are we having this point, counterpoint?
Because I enjoy your normally astute commentary, but this struck me as conforming to an ideal more than critical consideration of the situation.

The gov't is us. If our elected representatives enact laws, it's usually in response to an immediate problem that *we* want solved. And if not, I reckon we shouldn't be re-electing them.

I would suggest that a good many of our civic safety requirements come as the result of law suits, loud mad mothers, and lobbyists.

Take for instance 3 wheeled ATVs. Gov't allowed them, but after enough of them rolled over and killed children, common sense and greedy lawyers won the day. Ditto, those standing Ski Doos.

When companies stand to make and save bazillions of $ on proven safety equipment like anti-lock brakes, you can bet your bottom dollar they are schmoozing Congressmen to protect us from ourselves. Wanna stop that, prepare for a first amendment fight with the corporations who actually run our country. Bad odds.

If anything, motorcycles seem almost immune to gov't action. I remember reading not long ago that we had more Marines dying in domestic bike accidents than dying in combat. And that was when we were losing a lot more guys in our wars. Did that cause bikes to go the way of the 3 wheeled ATV? Not quite.

So anyone, even the big money in the beltway types comes to the NHTSA with a proposal to put a vehicle on the same roads that they remind us all are a privilege for us to pay for and use that
does not meet the intent of the implemented rules systematically put in place since Nader's Unsafe at any Speed gave them a mandate to punish three generations
I fail to see our punishment. There is certainly no federal helmet law. I can buy a 180 hp Hyabusa without proof of insurance, an hour of training, or a stitch of safety gear.

I understand your disgust with helmet laws, but those are local and you have every right to protest by spending your $ in lid free states. Either way, I'm pretty sure they have little to do with Ralph Nader's protest of an ancient car of questionable design.

Will you remain quiet if you buy a new Indian and find out that it poses a significant safety risk to its operators? If not, is it fair to castigate Nader?

The fact that motorcycling is a multibillion dollar industry is what keeps it viable.
Perhaps, but garage built trikes aren't and they are legal. Can Ams seem to be roaming our landscapes today. No seat belts on those things and they've just come into existence within the last few of years.

But all that money would be being spent elsewhere in the absence of the machines.
Goods create the demand for the fiat currency that chases them. Without the goods, banks would not be making the loans that brings that money into existence. Even if I bought an I-phone in lieu of a bike, there is still a large disparity in the resulting increase to our money supply.

When all is said and done, in addition to lower body counts, it may make economic sense to make our products safer rather than have to eliminate them due to their intolerable liabilities.

With that, I think I'll ride over to the dealer and listen as a new buyer tells his salesman that he's been riding for years just before he pops the clutch and runs headlong into the corn field. If I don't get enough of these cases documented, I'll never get my new corn detector mandated! :D
 

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As I was reading this Saddle/Pop debate(?), I was reminded of a bumper I saw just yesterday; The Bigger The Government, The Smaller The Citizen. Amen.
 

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As I was reading this Saddle/Pop debate(?), I was reminded of a bumper I saw just yesterday; The Bigger The Government, The Smaller The Citizen. Amen.
Time to cut back on the vicarious bumper sticker existence...

Saddle/Pop weren't debating the size of gov't, but rather their intrusion into our particular interest. I've been rollin like a bandit for decades and aside from a couple citations for speed, never really experienced a lot of oppression, YMMV.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I'd heard Wheels through Time was moving out of Maggie Valley, which would be a shame.I rode out there 3 summers ago,great museum in a beautiful setting.Any Vics on display there yet?
I was still on a Harley then.The 1st Vision I ever saw was over @ Deals Gap the day before,14 mos. later I'm on one.
No Vics, at least I did not see any. I have actually seen more Vics in the last few weeks out in my neck of the woods than I have ever seen. Was in Mountain City last week and saw a Kingpin, 2 Visions, and a Hammer ride by. Still have not seen any XC or XR's yet but I am sure I will run into at least another XC by the end of the summer.
 

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No Vics, at least I did not see any. I have actually seen more Vics in the last few weeks out in my neck of the woods than I have ever seen. Was in Mountain City last week and saw a Kingpin, 2 Visions, and a Hammer ride by. Still have not seen any XC or XR's yet but I am sure I will run into at least another XC by the end of the summer.
Legends are created from competition. Believe it or not, Harleys and Indians were the shiznit once upon a time. Once Jap engineered bikes came on the scene, Harleys were already relegated to retro. Harley found their salvation in marketing the lifestyle of a select few whose intriguing endeavors captivated the masses. But the heady days of beach and boardwalk racing excellence is probably the crux of what the museum seeks to pass along.

Prior to my conversion to the temple of the air-cooled twin, I was all about bikes that derived from the race scene. My favorite was the Ducatis. Their story is that of an underdog. Our bombers blew their multifaceted factories to bits during WWII.

They used to make radios and shavers and such:

Image (202).jpg

Image (205).jpg

Following the war, they needed transportation, so they rebuilt and started churning out these so their people could move about:

Image (190).jpg

Wasn't long until they started building these:

Image (191).jpg

And started winning a lot of these:

Image (201).jpg

And that's how the legends of museums are made...
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Velocity or one of those HD channels had a cool motorcycle program last summer where each episode focused on one manufacturer. It was very interesting to see where the Jap and European bikes companies started. I think Suzuki was making cotton weaving machines, Kawasaki started in airplane engines, etc. I think the WTT museum is a good place for the uneducated HD rider to go. Many like to poke at Vics because Polaris also makes atvs, jet skis, snow mobiles, etc. The museum had a section showing all kinds of things powered by HD and Indian motors like the first jet ski, roto tillers, ice cutting machines, snow mobiles, etc. They even had a water cooled HD engine from the 40's that I think was a military prototype.
 

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Mitsubishi made the Zero Japanese fighter in WWII long before they made cars and TVs. When the war started they could not be beaten in the air.
 

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I believe they also have a motorcycle museum in dandridge tn that open a couple yrs ago
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Is that right? I go through Dandridge a couple of times a month and have not seen it but then again I wasn't looking for one either. I just googled it and damn if I have not drove by it a bunch, not very well advertised and it is a small place. I have to go to Knoxville tomorrow so I may stop by and check it out.
 
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