As a HUGE fan of Sportsters, I was eagerly anticipating a re-launch of the Scout as a similar model from a rival brand, but I'm disappointed. Don't get me wrong, you get a lot of bike for the money in a new Scout (100hp, 6-speeds, etc.) but I am having a difficult time with the styling, especially that damn radiator. I understand the desire to make a modern machine with modern parts and performance, but (I know this is an odd question) is that really what people want? To me, this odd-looking, fin-less, liquid-cooled engine makes more sense in a sport bike. It is especially disappointing after seeing the beautiful air-cooled Thunder Stroke 111 motor used in all the other new Indian models.
I think the motor in the Harley Street looks better than this and I am not a fan of the Street.
The view from the top looks like any old boring metric cruiser and the colors in the speedometer faceplate strangely don't match anything else on the bike.
Overall, I find the bike too chunky-looking for my taste. The angle of the rear shocks is particularly bizarre. They said it was to be reminiscent of the lines of the frame of vintage Scouts. To me, it's just weird and doesn't look like it would function properly.
It's difficult to see in the photo, but I thought the Indian logo in the taillight was a nice detail.
I believe most people ride Harleys because they love Harleys. I've watched enough American Pickers to know many people feel the same about Indians.
Love is an irrational thing.
I don't think people choose Harley for modern performance and innovation. Maybe they did in the past, but those days are long gone (with the possible exception of Project Livewire). I see Harley and Indian as brands with amazing histories whose newer bikes strive for classic, timeless style mixed with modern reliability. When you abandon the focus on style and pursue performance, there's simply no way to catch up to what the Ducatis, Yamahas, Suzukis, and Hondas of the world are doing (among others). It's not to say that I wouldn't like some better shocks or brakes on my Sporty, but leave the motor alone. It's the heart and soul of the bike and, when you really think about it, that's what you fall in love with.
More photos (and fewer ramblings) from First Thursday are up next.
This ironhead won Best in Show. As far as I can tell, it's missing a few parts so it's not even a running bike, but that doesn't keep it from being awesome.
What you should be asking yourself at this point is, "was that a handpainted sign featuring a manatee drinking a can of Duff beer?" Yes, yes it was. I regret not going in that bar.
On the way home, I decided to do something I've wanted to do for years - see Eve of Destruction at Elko Speedway. I kept the kids out late for a night of racing. They loved it but both were really tired by the time we got home.
At one point, three guys on motorcycles put on a stunt show. This guy did a big burnout. I'm sure they advertise the tire as producing red smoke, but it looked pink from where I sat.
Highlights included Flag Pole races, figure-8 school bus racing, and a big (deliberate) bus crash at the end of the night. Note the school bus stood up on its end. It was the target of the final crash.
Here's a short video that I took of the grand finale. Enjoy!
Back in March, I attended the Build Art Bike Show (click here for pics) hosted by Andy from Hold Fast Motors. Andy organized a second show this year called the Spare Arts Motorcycle Show. It was held August 23rd in Austin, MN. Instead of riding to the show, I decided to drive and take my kids with me. It was just as well as we hit rain most of the way down to Austin. After taking the kids through the Spam Museum, the rain stopped so we headed to downtown Austin and found the show.
Here's Andy's bike:
I believe the trailer next to it was his too:
Jason's Dyna and a pair of Sportsters:
There were a few other neat vehicles at the show too including this VW camper...
..and this Harley-themed bicycle. You can learn more about the bicycle here.