When we asked ChopCult readers to bare their souls in last month's readership survey, details on who you are, what you do and how you spend your hard-earned money flooded in. In just the first seven days, 1,461 people participated in our probe, nearly eight percent of our weekly visitors. This return rate is massive by polling standards, and says much about how seriously you guys take your involvement in today's scene.
Here's a snapshot of some of the more interesting results from the CC survey. If you participated, thanks for your help and support. We'll be notifying ten lucky random winners of the $100 Biltwell gift certificates via email this week.
THE CHOPCULT MAN
• 98% of ChopCult readers are men
• 31% attended at least some college
• 28% earn a living doing a trade
• 77% work on motorcycles in their garage
• 43% can ollie a curb
• 39% can bunnyhop a milk crate
• 15% drink regional microbrews
• 60% do not smoke the devil's lawn; 37% require no doctor's certification to do so (outlaws!)
• 68% enjoy home cooking
• 80% have never hosted, organized or volunteered at a grassroots motorcycle event
Other demographic facts and figures we found interesting:
No surprises here. Sixty-one percent of you are between the ages of 25 and 39, which is nearly a decade below the average new Harley owner according to MoCo data.
Another affirmation of something we've always believed about today's motorcycler: you're smart, hard-working and self-motivated. We overlooked "retired" and "part-time" as choices on this question, and one regular CC reader pointed out that oversight. Sorry, Mr. Bryant!
The divorce rate among ChopCult readers is just 7.1%. The average divorce rate in America among 25- to 39-year-olds is 13.4%. Congratulations: Once you find her, you usually keep her.
Somewhat surprisingly, rigid Evo's edged out late-model Sporties in the current bike question, with Yamaha beating Triumph as the first non-MoCo machine in the top-10.
We were surprised to see springer forks fare so poorly against their hydraulic counterpart. Girders are practically invisible. Retro '70s funk may be all the rage in paint jobs, but girder forks from the same era don't get the love some think they deserve.
The next question might have been the most important one in our survey…
Wow! Shovelheads still reign surpreme. Old Triumphs broke into the top-10, but couldn't trump Honda's allure in the process, a curious shift in popularity for England's leading two-wheeled export in my opinion.
As the chart above indicates and a subsequent question quantified, 27% of CC readers have two bikes: one reliable runner and one project-in-progress. Again, the majority of you are enthusiastic yet practical when it comes to riding and building motorcycles.
To say ChopCult members are hungry for knowledge would be an understatement. According to the survey, 27% of you spend two hours EVERY DAY visiting bike-specific online resources. A whopping 63% of you are on Facebook. On the print side of the mass media equation, these chopper rags are your top three:
• The Horse (61%)
• Street Chopper (46%)
• Cycle Source (44%)
Of the 94% of you who visit ChopCult at least once per month, bike features top all other forms of content by a wide margin, as evidenced by the following chart:
Dive into the ChopCult forum and your collective affinity for old Harleys becomes even more clear:
In our questions about DVD's and videos, an interesting contadiction materialized:
Just how can the vast majority of ChopCult readers watch six or more DVD's every year without actually buying one? Are you guys renting this stuff, or do you steal from friends? Whatever the case, it's cool to learn that sitting in front of the boob tube hasn't lost its appeal.
WRENCHING AND RIDING:
This pie chart says everything you need to know about the modern motorcycler:
A whopping 87% of you guys work on your motorcycle. I'm only mildly shocked because in the last six months I've barely touched mine.
The next chart is even more impressive. Sheet metal and paint aren't tasks for the casual grease monkey, but you guys are hitting this stuff with gusto.
On the subject of riding your motorcycle, feast or famine appears to be the trend…
Nineteen percent of CC readers say they ride their motorcycles 200 days or more every year. I was shocked to learn that "less than 30 days per year" took third in our survey. I can't talk shit on this one. I haven't ridden either of my motorcycles ten times in the previous two years. It's probably because I spend so much time crunching data in stupid-ass surveys.
The chart above shows just how well-rounded today's hard-core motorcycle enthusiast has become. "Daily commuting" is a curious leader, but "customizing," "weekend rides" and "campouts" make perfect sense—that's the stuff I like to do, and I'm ten years past the CC readers' prime. What about "parking lot events?" Dead last. As the following charts illustrate, you guys seem to view bike nights, dealer events and motorcycle rallies with a similarly jaundiced eye…
Do these responses signal the death of shredded denim, Stoney Straps and nine-dollar beer? Probably not. It is encouraging to note the dramatic shift toward events that focus on riding, camping and camaraderie instead of shopping, polishing and burnout pits. If I could ask ChopCult readers for ONE thing, it would be take more responsibility for the quality of their local scenes. By your own admission, 80% of you have never worked at or organized a grassroots event. Measured against the strong DIY ethos that pervades the modern chopper scene, this is a dismal revelation in my opinion.
HOW DO YOU SEE YOURSELF?
Marketing wizards love to say "perception IS reality." One of the last questions in our survey sought to determine how you perceive YOUR place in the game…
Your top two answers illustrate both a firm grasp on reality and levels of dedication that seem honest and real. That four readers would admit to ditching choppers so they can move on to The Next Big Thing is both brazen and foul. We prize the truth around here, even when it hurts. Thanks again to everyone for their help. We promise to use the knowledge you've given us for good, not evil.