After a month long break, Talkin Braap returns. Mike and Roy talk about Drag racing and how it affects production vehicles. They also get way off topic and talk about some other stuff as well.
THIS TRANSCRIPTION WAS DONE BY OTTER AI. THE AUDIO QUALITY WAS LOW ON THIS EPISODE SO THERE ARE MANY ERRORS. WE DO PLAN TO COME BACK AND CORRECT THEM, BUT IF THIS MESSAGE IS STILL HERE WE HAVE NOT DONE SO YET.
Roy Merritt 0:00
I don’t know, I kind of like it.
Once again, it’s time to open your ears and expand your mind. Or maybe it’s still your mind. Either way, I think these boys have something to say. So sit back, grab a brew, we’re going to have some to give you our point of view. Here on talking braap. Yeah. All in all, I like it.
I just like that guitar riff kind of picks. Got the right attitude. Well, welcome back. It’s talking Brad. Episode Five. It’s me and Mike tonight. It’s been a little break, man. I did a podcast convention, a family vacation. We started the busy season. We’ve had a lot going on. So we didn’t get one out. Last beginning of this month, like we wanted to, but hey, we keep moving on to it. We got to do so.
Aaron’s moving and yeah, Yeah, he’s knee deep in a move and a house. But the topic of the night is racing. We kind of talked racing last time because I had gone to the flat track, which was an awesome experience. So in the meantime, I went to the drag races in Well, I guess it’s called Union City. Good Leadville. Whatever it is. They’re just outside of Nashville. It’s called Music City Raceway. Very cool time reminded me of pretty much every drag racing, then you have ever been to which is a lot of fun. You know, they line up they Hot Lap, and seemed like they did cars for about 2030 minutes in the day do bikes for 20 or 30 minutes or so and kind of run back and forth. The local dealership here our one of our competitors, is kind of hosting the whole thing their first Tuesday of the month. And there’s a lot of bikes out there a lot of Harley’s a lot of cool stuff going on side by sides, four wheelers, dirt bikes, you name it, they were out there. So you know, it gets you pumped up, get you ready to ride. You know, I’ve seen some sports out there tearing up that track. And, you know, ultimately, I think the biggest takeaway, if you go to one of these drag races, especially when they’re all Harley, is that V rod is fast shit.
Mike VO 2:55
Roy Merritt 2:56
Holy cow, that if that is not set up for drag strip, I don’t I don’t really know many bikes are when they hook up with a little bit done to them. They were running, you know, mid seven second, eight miles down there all day long. There was a half a dozen of them out there running that, you know,
Mike VO 3:14
well, we were kind of talking about that, that people don’t understand how different the rods are. Yeah, regular Harley’s. I think the reason that they didn’t do better domestically in sales, is because the Harley ingrained sales culture didn’t know how to sell the V rod. Oh, yeah. And they didn’t embrace the different aspect of it, you know?
Roy Merritt 3:42
Well, you know that, that, that in that same thought. I think that’s kind of what made hardly where they’re at right now, why they’re kind of hurting, is that last generation or so they had no idea what to do with, and now they’re realizing it. And that’s why our ridership is going down a little bit. I think that that V rod would have fit our new our generation of riders had been marketed properly. The writing position is a little weird. It is not for what the typical Harley rider was, when that bike came out. I think that person has changed a little bit since then. But for the most part in the early 2000s, we were still bagger heavy, you know, those baby boomer type people, they wanted nothing to do with that bike, I think. And it’s a shame because they’re awesome. They even sound good, you know, they, when they hook up they go, you know, and if you just cruise around town on one of those, you know, neighborhoods and cities and stuff, you really don’t get a feel for what that bike has to offer. You have to open that thing up, you know, you got to get it up in the RPM, you got to get it out on the road. And when you can, when you can get into the power band on that thing. You find out real quick what it’s about. And they are they’re cool bikes. There was a turbo bagger out there. I think when it may have been one of his first times out looking the way he was running because his first couple runs and his last couple runs that I watched were he had a different mindset, you could see us you know, trying different RPM, launching at things like that. So it looked like he was getting down in the last seven seconds when it was all said and done, which was pretty quick. I mean, especially for a bagger. It was not the most impressive bike on the strip though for sure. And I bet he felt bad there was in fact I put a video on the Instagram of a little Sportster running him down. I mean, damn near beat him damn near. And he left the light way ahead of him. I mean, he had him at 100 feet by a mile it seemed like and that sports search him here ran him down and I was like holy shit, you know was was it
Mike VO 5:55
was it the flame? The one we wanted to buy?
Roy Merritt 5:57
No, it wasn’t that one. But that was that was an another great story of the track again, I posted this on Instagram. We had a customer came in the weekend before the races. And it was the last weekend of the month. So everybody’s willing to make a deal on the last day of the month, you know, and and he came in and purchased his bike for really cheap, it was about 9098 no nose and it was it was a 91 anyone something like that. Yeah. Sportster, it had crazy forward controls that were like three inches higher than normal forward controls, had extended front end. And apparently a bunch done to the motor that maybe we didn’t realize, because he went out on the track and was just strolling it out there. That thing was fast. So he when we were at the dealership, he said, he said he’s like I don’t want the only reason I’m buying this is good, take it out and put it on the track and have some fun with it.
Mike VO 6:45
And it was he came in like he came in and offered money on that like four hours before Sam and I were gonna just buy it and turn it into a flat track bike. I know. That’s what we said next time, we’re
Roy Merritt 6:55
all just gonna go in and we’re
Mike VO 6:57
just doing it, we’re not gonna wait and talk about it. We’ve got the money set aside,
Roy Merritt 7:00
I got the bug man, you don’t even know all the stuff I want to do to my bike. So you know, we’re talking about drag racing. You know, I’ve been a d3, it’s basically stock, it’s got slip ons on it. That’s it. And this is for the most parts bracket racing, you know, you’re running times consistency. So there’s no reason I can’t run it at three on the track. So the only downside to this is and maybe we’ll talk about this another time, is the spring plate inside of the clutch on the Sportster. If you don’t know, it’s, it’s meant to make the engagement of the clutch smoother from the factory works great on a bike that you’re not beating the hell out of. I got 30,000 miles and I beat the hell out of mine. So I’m not putting it on a track with that in there, because I know I’ll probably blow it up. But that’s all I’m doing. I’m put a collection that thing and we’re going to see how consistent I can run out there. I’m certainly not going to be beating anybody really I don’t think on time, but it could still be a lot of fun. And that’s what you know, that’s really what it’s all about. You know, there was a couple of other little sports stirs I mean, guys on basically pretty stopped bikes out there running, you know, there was a 250 dirt bike, some four wheelers side by sides, like I said, and I think everybody was just out there to have a good time. The rules and things didn’t seem overly too complicated. I didn’t seem freaking out about anything. So, you know, I want to set my bike up for drags. Now, of course I want to I want to I want to flat track and drag it, which there is a bike out there. I think I showed you a picture of a mic. It’s a guest and it started life as either an 83 year 1200. And he’s kind of done a XR kind of bike that he’s made out of it with the tail section and it’s got XR badges on it and whatnot. But that thing was fast out on the track and it was fast out on a flat track to I’m guessing he’s probably got like a s&s hooligan kid or something in it, you know, it runs good runs real good. I actually hit him up on Instagram was like, dude, I love your bike is because it’s pretty much what I’d like to do to mine, which is make it real XR, although he does not have the inverted forks. So that’s the only downside. I’m hoping to do that to mine. We’ll see how that works out. But I had a caller lined up for tonight. A guy know Kevin, who runs I guess you’d say road racing, I guess you would call it at the big actual tracks where they do track days. And he runs and XR 1200 Harley, which is a rarity out there to have a Harley out on these things. So he’s been running it for a couple years now. And he’s also got a KTM Super Duke, that he runs in these races as well, you know, different classes. So you can run all day. He’s got two bikes now. But I was hoping to get him on here and talk to them. And we’ll maybe do an episode about that kind of what it takes to get into that kind of stuff. And you know what it’s like being an amateur, if you will, and trying to get out and race and have a good time but not break the bank. Because I think we all know, it’s not a cheap endeavor. You know, you know, we go along with the road racing and the drag racing and everything. And Mike, you’ve kind of touched on the land speed type stuff yourself, correct? Yeah, on a V rod on I was gonna say you have a V rod kind of setup for that, right. Yep.
Mike VO 10:37
Seven, I run special that I crashed, and then bought back from the insurance company and kind of went in with my father in law. We turned it into a speed bike. Nice. And that’s, that’s totally different. Yeah. Because I mean, you don’t you can’t have it’s not the same setup, everything. speed, and drag. Drag Racing is pretty much like hill climb. And flat track. Yeah, it’s that far apart. You know, because you have the your gear ratios are so tall because you don’t that you have. It’s a five mile shot. So you go out on the salt and you get out your startline. There’s two different classes. There’s I don’t remember what they call. Oh, the streamers streamline? Oh, yes. True stream, right. Yeah. So there’s there’s regular and stream liner. So really, it boils down to the difference is the stream lighters can’t start under their own power. Okay, so they have to be towed to start. Yeah. So they have a 10 mile track. And they’re measured for two miles, the standard class, which is everything that can start under its own power. So you’re standing at the start line, there’s a guy with the green flag, he drops the flag, your feet have to come off the ground, and the motorcycle starts going. If you push the motorcycle, you’re disqualified. Oh, really? Yeah. So other than that, it’s all just whatever class you run in based on displacement. The way I set up my, the rod, I’m actually running in the same class as all the high abuses, because it’s the same engine displacement. And I added a fairing inverted front end, which took it out of the stock body class and put it into the fairing class. If I would lift the fairing and the front end off, I would have been running with more of like a traditional v rod class and some of the other
naked street bikes. No.
But it’s it’s crazy man. Different.
Roy Merritt 12:53
So how often to they get to do stuff like that?
Mike VO 12:58
Well, I there’s a I think,
worldwide, I think there’s like five, six actual sanction tracks. I don’t recall. I know, I know, in the US. There’s Bonneville? Yeah, Utah, which is the salt flats. Yeah. There’s Mojave in California. Okay. And I don’t know if there’s any other ones. I know, there’s one in Australia. That’s a big one. And up there, they’re just kind of because you have to have this vast amount of space to do it. Yeah, nothing around.
Roy Merritt 13:32
Yeah. To break or killer. Right. Yeah. You know,
Mike VO 13:35
and, and I mean, even even when we’re out there, you know that the track, they go out. So there’s, there’s like the AMA sanctioned national speed week. And then there’s what I raced in was Bob’s land speed, which is Bob’s, you know, was an exhaust manufacturer, that super interesting partner with Brian Hart for a while partner with some other exhaust manufacturers, but then started his own classification, because during National speed week, it’s really difficult on a motorcycle, because you have to compete with the cars. So really, you have people from all over the world that come here for a four day event. And everybody uses the same track, because it’s not like there’s there’s nine different tracks out there. Yeah, it’s it’s real specific, because of the speeds that they’re doing, and how long the tracks have to be. So you have to have a relatively flat plane for five miles on the short track. And I believe they call it the mountain track, is 10 miles long for the stream liners. So on the regular track, you start at the start line, you have three miles to get to speed, they measure you for one complete mile, and then you have a mile to stop on the mountain track. You have six miles to get to speed, they measure you for two,
and then you have
Roy Merritt 15:12
three miles to stop. So is it like an average over that mile is what you get considered for or is it
Mike VO 15:18
time is the time, it’s how long it takes from when you enter the measured mile to when you exit. They take however long that takes to get from point A to point B, that’s your speed. So then what happens if you break a record, they radio at the end, you stop and you go to the all the way to the end of the track. And there’s you know, another official there. And they either wave you off the track or they say you broke a record. Now you needed to go back and do it the other direction. You can’t leave the track. Because if you if you break a world record a speed record. Yeah. They it’s a big deal. I’m sure you know what I mean. So I mean, it’s not like, hooligan, you know, where you just go sign up. I mean, there’s it’s scrutineer, it’s the whole nine yards. So when you run out in whatever class you’re in, if you break the record for your class, you go to the end, you turn around, you do it again, then they take the average of the two times, if the average is faster than the previous record, you broke the record. Oh, wow. So you gotta do it twice. Yeah, you got to do it back to back. And then the average of those two times is your actual speed. Wow. So then, if that’s the case, then you have to go immediately to scrutiny hearing and take the motorcycle apart while an official watches and then they measure it and make sure that you are actually in the class you signed up for. Wow.
Roy Merritt 16:41
It’s It’s It’s crazy. I’m guessing if you fail that you’re done, and you’re done. You’re just got everything disqualified.
Mike VO 16:48
I never you know, the art. Our bike never broke any records because we’re in a class with bikes that are Yeah, it’s extremely hard to compete against, I would imagine.
Roy Merritt 17:00
Especially boost. I mean, news from the factory dude damn near 200 miles an hour.
Mike VO 17:04
Well, so on the salt. It’s more like riding on the beach. Okay, so if it does 200 miles an hour on the tarmac, it would probably do about 160 570 on salt. So you think these guys that are going 220 230 miles an hour on the salt flats? That’s probably a 260 270 mile an hour vehicle? On on us on a roadway? Yeah, but you just there’s no way to get it going that fast. Because
Roy Merritt 17:30
runways aren’t long enough. I think most of us could to see that stuff on TV. And you know, I look at that, that you know, on TV and I see like the cracks and everything in there and they look like they’re damn near big enough you can stick your finger in, you know, the like the cracks in this whole bed and everything and I just think man this I really saved to be running. You know, I mean, I guess it’s hard packed and whatnot. I mean, I’ve never been out there myself. But you know where did Where did that kind of I guess somebody wrote out there one day on something and was like, hey, look at this long and flat amigo. Fastest shit. Yeah.
Mike VO 18:07
I think it started in the 1920s we could probably look that up. You know, like he there’s that show the world’s fastest Indian? Yeah. You know, that was that’s kind of what was all that stuff. That was that was Bonneville, Utah. Yeah, and the track the track is it’s pretty rough. And from year to year. It’s different because the weather and I mean, it rains all year. I mean, it’s not like they cover it up. I mean, it’s like it sometime each year, isn’t it? I mean, no, not really. I don’t I don’t I don’t know if the water gets quite that high. Yeah. It I mean, it used to be an ocean and then everything. You know, it’s all it’s basically just the salt bed that’s left from an ancient ass ocean. That settled in its Valley. And but it’s a trip because it’s you go out there and it looks like you’re, you’re like on the Arctic plane.
Everything is white.
Roy Merritt 19:02
Alright, so this is interesting. I’m Wikipedia in the Bonneville Salt Flats and it says geologists Grove Carl Gilbert named the area after Benjamin Bonneville, a US Army officer who explored the Intermountain West and the 1830s. In 1907, Bill Rochelle and two local businessmen tested the suitability of the salt for driving on by taking a Pierce arrow onto the surface of the flats. So they are credited as the first people to take a vehicle out on the salt flats and run it. I mean, what do you think that thing topped out at like 94?
Mike VO 19:42
Well, did they did they race it? Or do they just drive around?
I think they probably just drove around. They’re like, I wonder if we’re going to fall through this stuff.
Roy Merritt 19:49
A railway line across the Bonneville Salt Flats was completed in 1910. Making the first permanent cross Yeah. And then they made the highway right next person and speed record was said there in 90 1314 by Teddy tetes. That
Mike VO 20:01
was 1914 Yeah, I knew I knew it was way back in the day.
Roy Merritt 20:05
Yeah. But yeah, and I’m sure I do, because it’s going through. There’s like a million movies of it filmed out there. Oh,
Mike VO 20:11
yeah. Sure that
Roy Merritt 20:12
But yeah, I mean, you know, I love the saying, and I can’t remember where I originally heard it. But it was, you know, the first race was right. The first race ever was right after the second car ever was made, or the second vehicle ever was made. Because it’s human nature. You get to this thing, right? Oh, dude, let’s see who wins. Hey, you know what I mean? So after the third or fourth car was made, or whatever vehicle I’m sure there was some kind of race involved. And, and that’s kind of where I think I think it transfers into cars. Pretty much anything dirt bikes, you name it. Racing rules, man, you know, racing kind of drives everything to an extent. You know, people don’t for the most part, I guess. I guess there’s different type of people, but people aren’t out there driving challenger or charger our keys. Because they get good gas mileage and they’re eco friendly. They’re doing it because a they’re probably NASCAR fans, because that’s usually driving the Dodge chargers challengers. Or be because they’re fast. And they want to line up next to somebody else. And they want to beat them. You know, I think everybody you know, what was it? Fast and Furious? I live my life a quarter mile at a time. Yeah. quarter mile at a time. I was love that line. It was so cheesy. But I think we’d all love to if we could, you know, and you know, for our generation, I guess in the 90s it was like kind of that Honda for banger craze for me. Yeah, see, and it was for me over in Florida. is cheap, man. I could pick up a car for two or three grand dude do a grand worth of work to it and make this quick little car that got 35 miles to the gallon. And I could drive it around and beat the hell out of it everywhere I went. They were fun.
Mike VO 22:03
I had a 1967 dodge coordinate with a 449.
Roy Merritt 22:07
So you were getting like four miles a
Mike VO 22:09
gallon? Yeah, but it didn’t matter. Gas was 95 cents. Same same as a pack of cigarettes.
Roy Merritt 22:14
Back in the day. I remember saying I was going to quit when I think they went to two or three years later paying like $6 a pound.
Mike VO 22:24
It’s crazy. Yeah. But I mean, you know, they’re they’re talking about putting a new gas tax though.
Roy Merritt 22:30
gases. It’s not expensive enough, you know, and it doesn’t doesn’t drive everything on the planet. So they need you know, a couple of cents on gas and they make so much money because every gas drives every
Mike VO 22:42
Yeah, but they misappropriated that’s a different.
Roy Merritt 22:45
Yeah, that’s a different discussion. That’s a different podcast. Yeah,
Mike VO 22:47
that’s a totally different set of
Roy Merritt 22:52
ghosts. But you know it and I think it’s, you know, it plays into the racing and all that kind of plays into what what we do for a living in that that the performance motorcycle even a performance bagger, if you will, is kind of what it right now, you know that I think this Milwaukee eight motor kind of woke up people’s eyes as to what you can do with a factory Harley motor, you know, the twin cams we saw the same motor for years and years and years. So even when they got up into the one 10th of 120s it was the same shit. nobody really cared, you know, but this walkie does come out. I think, you know, like you were talking about we just did kind of the cam shootout thing. With a bolton cam, you’re almost inch, four inch, inch, four horsepower. Yeah, you can take a 114 and throw Cameron and damn near get 114 horsepower out of it. Yeah, you know, it’s close, you know, you might have to do other stuff, but it’s close, you know.
Mike VO 23:54
And I think, you know, the torque. Right. And, you know, there’s that old adage, and you just you just see the arguments all the time, about how like, Oh, well, you know, like the BMW X 1200 and 30 horsepower. But yeah, but that’s an 8000 rpm. Yeah, you know what I mean? And it’s, you can’t compare these different engine technologies, they all make very similar power, they just make the power in different way, even then, I would imagine you could probably find a horsepower cam, that you could put the you’re not going to get the torque numbers that we want to see. And you could probably get over 114 out of a Campbell and I would imagine, I mean, are there not some horsepower cams out there that are more so than torque used to Well, you could add or horsepower you
Roy Merritt 24:43
Mike VO 24:44
you can you can do that. I mean, you can put like some of the EK so we’re speaking about Harley Davidson’s which are basically, you know, they’re 45 degree
external push rod. Yeah.
Cam driven, you know, the cams are on the bottom, the rock arms are on the tops, and they have, you know, real traditional drive train. They’re not like the ones that are overhead cams. You know what I mean? So it’s a stroke.
Roy Merritt 25:14
Mike VO 25:15
Yeah. So it’s a completely different technology. And yes, you can find a cam that will make really large horsepower numbers, but you’re going to have to read it to like 5000 RPM, which in the world, I mean, it’s almost like comparing a diesel and a gasoline engine?
Roy Merritt 25:34
Well, you know, that it’s taken, I think it’s taken quite a few years to train Harley people into stop looking at the horsepower numbers.
Mike VO 25:44
And that song is not it has not been, it’s not, it’s not done. It’s not No, it’s not even started
Roy Merritt 25:49
yet. I mean, but we’ve had a good response. And I’ve seen since I’ve been here, and since you got you know, since you guys have done the US videos, and all that I’ve seen a wider acceptance of forget about your number and look at your torque curve, you know that that torque curve means a lot more than your peak number, your peak number doesn’t mean shit. If you’re peeking out at you know, 120 foot pounds of torque and you’re not seeing it till 3000 rpm and you’re only seen it between three and five. It’s not a lot of usable power. But if you’re starting at 110 at 2000 rpm and you carry at least 110 all the way across the power band that likes going to kill the other bike on the road. Right You know, and that’s one of the things that I think we’ve had to train the customers into you give me one of those a beer Oh yeah, that’s it I was like pointing out of the
Mike VO 26:50
enemy What’s going on? Are we being attacked? Yeah.
Roy Merritt 26:55
I do. But you know and and I think the more people start to realize that you’re going to see you know, I so bad want to see some of these bikes we’ve built go out to the track and see what they actually do on the track and especially eighth mile is eighth miles like damn, they’re all tour Oh, yeah. You’re not getting into enough to be worried about you know, horsepower. That’s why the turbo bikes that’s why I said I think I was talking to Sam about it except a spool a quarter mile that turbo fucking bagger probably would have been killing everybody.
Mike VO 27:28
Right? Because Because once it spills, then then you’re hitting Yeah, you’re hitting 40 505,000 RPM right about that eighth mile mark. And now you’re hitting 130 horsepower. So
Roy Merritt 27:39
yeah. Well, there was a there was a boost out there. And I mean, let’s face it, if you know what you’re doing and you said a boost up right? Who’s got 10 bikes or fastest shit? And there wasn’t a bike out there that could have touched that thing but he was I’m going to say all the wheelie bar built up. I mean, I I could see the shift light and stuff that was blinding his face from a mile away, you know, thing was set up and it was fast. I forget what it was running, you know, something stupid, like five I don’t even know. But it was fast. And it was almost not worth watching. You know? Because it was like, yeah, that thing’s fast. Okay, cool. What else you got? And I had a lot of fun watching the regular bikes go there was a diner, I want to say it was like a street Bob or something like that. And had ape hangers and shit. And man, he had a hard time keeping that front wheel on the ground and he was running bikes down because he would launch you know, the front wheel would come off the ground and he led off it and then just run bikes down. I don’t know what he had on there. But that thing was fast. And I was talking to Jordan I said man when you get Mike is dying out there run it and Jordan says that that’s a jockey shift. Is that really good for drag racing? And I was like, yeah, that make sense? No, I think probably wouldn’t be that great on the dragon Scott.
Mike VO 28:58
Not an announcement. quarter mile quarter mile. Yeah. Aaron’s not here to to,
to say anything about this but so you know, my little 95 inch super high compression motor. You know, he has that 107 you will moto that he thought was like all the balls back in the day when he first when he first got around us. And I remember the first time we were getting on the freeway and I was behind him and I was like, I know this guy is gonna be like see soon as he gets the opportunity. So soon as he got the clear shot, I downshifted, you know, got to like four grand. And I saw him pull. And I just hammered it and bold. And he looked back and he had to look twice, because you know, I just built roadies 123 Yeah. And he looked back and was extremely shocked that this 103 and this 95 minutes, but we’re right behind
30 horsepower, Windows seven.
Roy Merritt 30:03
It was pretty funny. You know, that’s one of the things I have to say has given me the greatest pleasure as a rider is, and it’s the reason I ride small bikes, like an 83 is because if I can take somebody in a turn, or God forbid, in traffic, and you know, beat somebody, especially in the turn, because I’m pretty good in the turns. I feel so much better than being on like a sporty that I spent 10 grand on, you know what I mean? I used to the same thing on my cow Saki and it handled a little better than my sporty so I could get it down pretty low in the turns. And I you know, those cloverleaf getting on and off the highway. I don’t know how many sport bikes I used to cut inside and pass and watch their faces as I go by like, what the fuck? It was just a cruiser, it wasn’t a sport bike. It You know, that’s part of the reason, like I said, it’s why I don’t mind Rodney and add three, because when I go ride with all these guys that have 10 grand and their motors, and I’m right there buying them, you know, I’m not beating them, but they’re not leaving me in the dust either, you know, and then afterwards, they’re like, you know, let things fester. And I thought it would be and I’m like, thank you.
Mike VO 31:21
Right? Yeah, it just
Roy Merritt 31:22
depends on how you write it. I wrote with a guy who was from Michigan. I met him in Sanford, Florida. We got to ride together. He was down there for a couple months. And he had a CPR XX, if you remember the spike was back in the mid 90s. It was an 1100 was a precursor to the high abuses. Yes, it was a blackbird. You’re right. Awesome. This was this is on my list of bikes that I will own. That was a V twin, wasn’t it? I don’t know the RC 51 was a V twin. I don’t think the I don’t think the Blackbird was known on the V twin was a was an in line. It was a in line for you. Yeah, the the Blackbird I think was an in line. But it was a it was like I said it was a precursor to the high abuse of 1300 and all that. And I think at the time, it was one of the fastest bikes, you know, yeah, round. And I remember being a young teenager and you know, putting that bike on my list of things I would own and I will own one one day because they’re cool bikes, you know, they were fun to ride. But anyways, this guy had written this bike from Michigan all the way down to Florida. And he was shipping his stuff to each destination ups or whatever, and he would just ride and he had taken like a six or eight month sabbatical, or whatever you want to call it and was just riding around the country. I was so jealous. But we went out one day and went for a ride. And you know, this is an 1100 sport touring bike, you know? And I’m on a cow, Saki, 750 Volkan. And we went out just hammering the bikes one day, and we pulled up to our first stop and he got off the bike and he looked at me and he says, that bike is a shit ton faster than I thought it would be. And I laughed, I was like, dude, thank you. I was like, that’s a hell of a compliment coming from a guy on a fucking 1100 sport touring bike, right? I mean, so you know and we had a great time I still talk to him to this day every once in a while you know will message each other back but you really cool guy to ride with we had a good time we did like Leesburg bike fest and some other stuff. And you know, had a good time. But yeah, I used to live run around with the guys on sport bikes. And because they’re always you know, they think they think they’re the shit. You know, look at our six. I’m a badass. Well, only if you know how to ride it. Yeah, you know, if you know how to ride it, yeah, you can be a badass because that’s a badass bike. But I don’t know that most of them really know how to ride it. At least in my experience. I guess the guys that do you don’t you don’t catch up with so?
Mike VO 33:50
Yeah, the one the and I think that’s
pretty much across the board. I think a lot of people
you know you.
Most people are casual writers. Yeah. You know, and most people, they don’t put their machines through the paces. They don’t push it to what it’ll do. You know, you, we did a cam test video a couple months ago. And then we did a comp cam. And the comp cam had the highest horsepower, highest torque of all the cams, but it was like super late. It was I mean, right at right damn near red line. I mean, it was it was a dog all the way through. And I don’t know how many people I want that Comcast and we’re like, No, you don’t. You do not want that Comcast because you are not on a track.
Roy Merritt 34:42
Part of that was that loop? I think in that video when they when they played the sound of that. Yeah,
Mike VO 34:49
we’re not doing the sound. The sound last one. The Loop was really
Roy Merritt 34:53
Mike VO 34:54
on that comp cam. Oh, yeah, of course. I mean, it had, like 250 degrees of duration or something was insane. was ridiculous. Yeah. Maybe we need was like the it was it was literally a race cam that got put in the mix with all of these really great bagger can which is a new kind
Roy Merritt 35:11
of figure the deck him wanted a bigger motor. But
Mike VO 35:14
yeah, right. Yeah, that that cam would do well, with with you know, you know this. When you get into the, the formulation of, of engine building, and purpose, you really have to kind of pay attention because you can spend a lot of money in the wrong spots. Because you’re you aren’t either one, you’re not actually assessing what you are truly trying to do with a vehicle. And I mean, this isn’t just motorcycles. I don’t know how many, how many car enthusiasts and hot rod enthusiasts, you know, they’ll buy, they’ll spend so much money on the wrong components, because they don’t understand that that’s not what they were trying to achieve. They they get it all because so on. So recommended, but but you know, so and so’s a Grand Prix driver. So when you tell them that you have a Datsun to a DZ. And you like to ride around on the mountains, he thinks you’ve already got a small block Chevy in there, or you have you know, you you’ve got an upgraded motor and you’re going to be going 80 miles an hour on 40 mile an hour turns, he doesn’t realize you’re going 35 miles an hour on 40 mile an hour. And you you know people don’t explain that. Yeah. So you you have to ask, I think, you know, some of these tuners and builders, you know, the good ones are real responsible in the in the lead up questions, because it doesn’t matter how much money somebody spends it, what matters is it when you deliver the product, you deliver what they’re actually looking for, and you’re able to explain to them that you don’t want the most horsepower out there. Yeah, and by the way, I have to put this out there. horsepower isn’t even real. It’s okay. would never was it’s a made up number. I think someone from the American dairy Association, gotten got together with somebody in the automotive marketing department and figured out how to market this horsepower thing because it’s a it’s a mathematical calculation. So
Roy Merritt 37:17
I remember reading about this, and I don’t remember if it was MMI or what was it, but so the story was they took, like, all these different types of horses from like Shetland ponies up to like, Clydesdales, okay. And had them. It was you know, how they make the horses walk in the circle thing? Yeah. So they did the turn butter thing with I believe some weight, they’d put weight on them seen how long how many times they could go around whatever it was. And they came up with this, I believe it’s like 33,000 pounds per minute, or something weird like that. And that is the amount of work that the average horse can do. This is where this number started. This is back in like horse and carriage days, this technology, this number that people were chasing was way before you know anything real anything with a real horsepower. But yeah, it’s a made up number. And it’s calculated off of the torque that you produce, which is the actual measured number, right? And the amount of time that is torque over time is what what what horsepower is if it did, yeah, divided by 52. It is torque over time. And you know, it’s a made up number. Yeah, I think any tuner that is worth his salt has that same mentality, like fuck horsepower, you know, after knowing how everything works, because my buddy Corey, he’s the same way like it’s a fucking made up number like, you know, don’t don’t focus on horsepower. It’s not, it’s not what you really need. Yeah, and we even do like the horsepower club or whatever. But ultimately, we should be doing like 150 foot pounds of torque club. That’s what we should be doing. You know, because we’re knocking on that door. Well, and it’s coming. It’s going to be the the big dogs are going to be hundred and 50 Plus, you know,
Mike VO 39:21
well, so the thing with horsepower is the, in our world is the how elusive it is. Yeah. Because in these large displacement, large stroke engines, so you take a Harley Davidson Milwaukee, okay. 114 cubic inch motor, right? It is a four inch bore. It’s not exactly four inch, yeah, but it’s right around four inches close enough. And a four and a half inch stroke. So the four and a half inch stroke means that the piston moves four and a half inches. From top dead center to bottom dead center. You take a high Buddha, it’s a three inch, I wouldn’t even know if I wouldn’t even a guest. And two, two and a half. And it’s a two and a half inch stroke. Okay, stroke. Yeah, yeah. So the stroke is roughly just a little bit more than half now two and a half inches. You know, you take your finger. And if you take your forefinger basically says like some weird old trick that some old man showed me or I made up, I can’t remember. But each pad on your forefinger is roughly one inch. Yeah. So if you don’t have a ruler, and you hold your front finger out, it’s pretty much three inches. Yeah. And it doesn’t really matter. I mean, even even somebody, yours might be three and a quarter. Yeah, but but pretty sorry. Sorry, guys. Good. Your fingers three inches long.
Roy Merritt 40:48
What might my cow sock he was like that it only had maybe two, two and a half inch rope. So I could read it. Yeah,
Mike VO 40:53
that’s it. Yeah. So so it’s really not moving very far. Yeah. So the farther things move, the last it takes for them to travel from point A to point B. So when you talk about like these, these race bikes that get 1214 16,000 RPM, just because the components don’t have to move very far. So if you take something that has to move four and a half inches versus something that moves two inches, and you spin it 5000 times per minute. The pieces moving five inches, or four and a half inches, is under a extreme amount of stress. Where the pieces moving to is under relatively none. Yeah. So that’s basically how they are able to do this. So, you know, Honda figured all that out what I can’t remember his first name. But you know, he figured that out because he didn’t like two stroke engines because of how dirty they were. And he he wanted to make a four stroke engine that could compete on the Isle of Man. I think it was right back in the late 60s, early 60s, man pushed a lot. Well, I mean, like you were talking about how like everything basically comes to racing racing is how we innovate because you don’t know what the the machines are capable of until you push them to the extreme. Yeah, it’s the same thing. Even in so rock climbing. I saw that Netflix documentary, the guy that cut his finger off. I heard you guys talking about Oh, it’s crazy, you know, super inspiring. Yeah. You know, this guy basically picks us on climate will line on El Capitan in Yosemite, and pushes the human to the extreme. Well, you don’t know what the extreme is until you meet the limit and exceed it, you know. So it’s no different. And I think it’s part of the human endeavor and the human experience to try to find out what this is. And in that process, you don’t you you have an extreme amount of r&d and development that goes with it.
Roy Merritt 42:54
Yeah. Well, you know, it’s funny you say that because speaking of Netflix, documentaries, the motocross one unchained Oh, yeah. That was that was that was a great one in the same kind of thing. You know, you don’t realize what’s going on, behind the scenes, scenes. And, and, you know, I remember watching all those X Games and all that stuff that was going on, but like you said, you don’t know what your limits are. And as soon as you find out what you think they are, somebody breaks them.
Mike VO 43:24
And somebody says, I can do that.
Roy Merritt 43:26
Yeah. Supercross freestyle, freestyle motocross. This is a perfect example of that. You know, when they first started somebody doing a front flip, Are you fucking kidding me? That’s the dumbest thing you ever said. But they’re doing them now. Well, I thought, yeah, they’re doing so many things.
Unknown Speaker 43:41
Well, there are no bills now.
Mike VO 43:45
I was watching the winter X Games. And you know, I grew up snowmobiling. And I was like, never been on a snowboard. No freakin way. Anyone ever thought that flipping is? Back in the day. And now it’s like, well, what else can happen pretty soon it’s gonna be razors watch.
Roy Merritt 44:01
Oh, yeah, they’ll be Yeah, cuz
Mike VO 44:03
these razors are just, they’re insane. Yeah, you know, Nick is always talking about just the craziest shit. They do. You know,
Roy Merritt 44:10
fucking like ski roller, roller blade wheeled scooters. There’s like a whole freestyle scooter thing like red grown ass men riding these scooters around and they do all these crazy tricks. Like, I’ve seen this shit. And I mean, they’re talented. Don’t get me wrong. They’re just some crazy shit. But who would have thought? Fucking scooters? You know what I mean, though, I guess whatever. You can ride around and do flips and tricks on people don’t give a shit anymore. You know, write it do it. It’s cool. You know? It’s cool. I agree. You know, dude, dude, dude, you want to do but yeah, I mean that that whole limits thing is great to see people push in anything. Yeah. Anytime you think that that’s your limit. And you stop. There’s something wrong with you. You know what I mean? You always have to find more. And yeah, I don’t think if you’re hunting for more, you’re really doing yourself justice.
Mike VO 45:02
Well, there’s a there’s an adage that, I think is pretty important. And
I think I read it in
the old Donald Walsch book. And it always stuck with me and it is life begins at the edge of your comfort zone. Yeah. So you know, when you do things that you know, work, and it’s just always the same thing, and you’re never pushing the boundaries. You’re never going to improve? Yeah, I mean, half the time when I’m putting these things together. I don’t know what’s gonna happen. It scares the shit out of me. You know, people put a lot of money on these CDs, you know? And I’m like, well, this I think this is gonna work. should work. Should.
Roy Merritt 45:49
I’m using my experience.
Mike VO 45:50
I went almost this far last time, and it was okay.
Roy Merritt 45:53
Well, that goes back to the Do you know what you’re doing? Question? Know. Exactly. And I think we talked about this. Yeah, I don’t know. I don’t know. But as Jesse James on monster garage, would ask his contestant you walk around to them while they’re doing shit. Hey, you know what you’re doing? And he said, it was always the same if the guy said, Yeah, I know what I’m doing. He had no fucking clue what he was doing. But if he’s like, nope, no idea. He said, I turned around the balloon because they probably knew exactly what they were doing. And I think that’s true. When you get to a point. Like you, you’re in a niche, something you do well, something, you know, even you know, you don’t know everything. So you know what I mean? Like, if if you’re in doing anything, and you think, you know, you have all the answers, chances are, you’re delusional. Well, you know, like, and there’s something wrong with that. But being in that position, knowing that man, I don’t know, you know, everything. And something could go wrong at any moment. I think that’s what keeps people grounded. And that’s the way it should be, you know, when you get better than yourself, or what you can provide, then I think everything goes to shit.
Mike VO 46:58
Well, and you know, I think you also get, there comes a point, probably in just about any skill set, that it’s real difficult to find people to teach you anymore, because anyone that could teach you is a competitor.
Roy Merritt 47:19
Yeah. And then I want to help
Mike VO 47:20
and they don’t want to help you because they’re in the same position you’re in. So the things that they know that you don’t know. And vice versa, you figure out by basically stalking them, trial and error, trial and error, you know what I mean? You see things that they do that are working really well. And you’re like, how is that happening? How are they achieving this? You know, yeah, you can call them they’re like, yeah,
Roy Merritt 47:43
yeah. I mean, yeah. Unless you’re really good friends with them and know somebody, you’re probably
Mike VO 47:48
not going to get it. Right. So so you so you have to, you know, there’s a lot of studying. Yeah. And I think the better you get, the more the more you have to study. Because that’s when you realize the things you don’t know because you don’t know what you don’t know. Until you go. I just found out I didn’t know that. Yeah, you know what I mean?
Roy Merritt 48:10
Yeah, it’s not like, you know, oh, well, I don’t know this. I don’t know that. I don’t know this. No, because if you knew what those were you wouldn’t
Mike VO 48:15
you then then then you would start researching so that you would start to know, you know, and I and and when you get into racing performance, all that, you know, it’s kind of like that and you look at look at Formula One I mean, you look at these guys now these new drivers, they’re 20 years old. Yeah.
Roy Merritt 48:34
And and and, and another another great Netflix series.
Mike VO 48:39
Oh, drive to survive. And on prime going back to motorcycles hitting the apex. Yeah, that Brad Pitt did. Oh my gosh,
Roy Merritt 48:46
I think I’ve watched that but I’m maybe you need to watch it again.
Mike VO 48:49
It’s, it’s cool.
Roy Merritt 48:52
41 NASCAR, things like that have always been very interesting to me, because they don’t build their own motor. You know what I mean? That kind of formula. One series had a big thing about Renault and right renew however they say it. I don’t know. I said we’re not focusing their French it’s it’s Renault in in American.
Mike VO 49:15
No, American, it’s gay.
Roy Merritt 49:19
But anyway, I don’t know how they say it in France had the big thing about the one team that went I think they went to Honda.
Mike VO 49:25
Roy Merritt 49:27
Yeah, I’m sorry. I
Mike VO 49:29
will in McLaren the year before was trying to use Honda. But Honda was Toronto’s having a hard time with the turbo setup.
Roy Merritt 49:34
So I would have a hard time not going with Honda. Mainly because Honda is so big and has so much r&d and in racing in general. Well, but they try but yeah, but may not have the best of the best. But to me, they’re kind of go to the same way. When when so I guess it’s been 10 years now. I guess since Toyota entered NASCAR. I’ve always been a big fan of Toyota. I’ve enjoyed trucks and cars. They make good stuff. We’re done. And yeah, but when TRD entered NASCAR I was really excited because TRD is is a serious branch of
Mike VO 50:14
but it what how it look look it It took them years. It took them years the trucks though.
Roy Merritt 50:20
Well, yeah, the trucks man they dialed in and the drivers were like, We don’t do shit. TRD gives me the truck and I drive it. They killed it in trucks now. Well, however, that worked out it is what it is. That’s kind of luck of the draw. I think a lot of shit, you know? And they had a lot to learn about NASCAR. I think the difference is the rules in NASCAR are almost constantly changing every year that shit changes what they’re allowed to do what they’re not allowed to do, but they do that’s very strict. Try to keep it Yeah. And they keep it even I get it you know, I get it. But but it’s bullshit. The the TRD when they entered I was like, Man, you know, don’t get me wrong by American I believe that, you know, but most of those Hondas and Twitter’s are simple. They are very simple here just like everything else anyways, so I you know, I get over bent out of shape. I think just
Mike VO 51:10
the European cars are still building Europe.
Yeah. Which is why they’re so cool. Yeah, Germany. It was weird. You go to Germany. I don’t know if you’ve ever been to Europe. I haven’t you go to Germany. There’s Mercedes and BMW everywhere. Yeah, they’re like, you know, the cabs and yeah, and then and then like, the wealthy drive American cars. Yeah. You know, because it’s like the reverse. Yeah. Well, I mean, you know, it’s it’s kind of like, if you think about it, you’re like, Oh, yeah, I guess that makes sense. You know, it caught it with our trade, our trade rules and things. Well, I think honestly, isn’t Volkswagen more the Ford
Roy Merritt 51:47
and Mercedes kind of more like the Lincoln or Cadillac, if you will?
Mike VO 51:53
I don’t know. When I was in Germany. I think every every cab I got into is either a BMW or Mercedes.
Roy Merritt 52:00
Yeah. I mean, you know, like the 330. I love Volkswagen. I mean, I love German cars. I love Volkswagens. I worked for Volkswagen.
Mike VO 52:09
I love always me.
I love I would car I love that they fucking cheated the EPA for so many years and got away with it. I love smart
Roy Merritt 52:18
as shit. Yeah. Did you ever get like the lowdown on all of this?
Mike VO 52:22
Roy Merritt 52:24
So like they had their ship set up. So you would go and change it? Yeah. When they when they when they do the EPA, they put them on a dyno. So like, there was certain parameters they had set in the computer. So like if the back wheels weren’t spinning in the front were or vice versa, which on a dyno?
Mike VO 52:42
Right. So let’s switch back. And if
Roy Merritt 52:45
What if there was there was a couple other variables, I want to say air intake temperature, there was something with intake and something else. I think it might have been map and speed because there I think you can tell how fast you’re going by the upload and the speed and the intake. But there was something else it was like three variables. And if it’s so all three of those variables, it went into fuck you mode basically economy, man. Yeah, yeah. and was like, fuck it. We’re going we’re an EPA testing now and it new. Fucking give it to the German sued. That’s brilliant. Now I get it, you know that it’s shitty. But you know, it is what it is, man. You know, life is made off of people that learn how to work the system properly. Oh, yeah, we’re doing it. Yeah, everybody does it. The people that are making money and doing cool shit are that’s how it works.
Mike VO 53:35
Well, the unfortunate thing is
the rules in general are not there for anything other than to make people wealthy. There’s a very small group of people that make money off of the EPA regulations. Because you because if you if you tune a vehicle, it’s going to run way more efficiently. Then one out of the factory, if we take the catalyst out of the out of out of a motorcycle, and Donald tune it when I’m done dialed tuning it, it gets better gas mileage, it runs cleaner and has less emissions and has more performance. They’re still the factor of hydrocarbons all the catalyst is all the catalyst does is get super fucking hot. So it’s a blast furnace. Yeah,
Roy Merritt 54:30
it’s also the the materials in there are chemical reaction to get rid of some of
Mike VO 54:34
that right. But it just turns it into other compounds that are just as dangerous in the atmosphere. Oh, I don’t disagree. They just don’t they those aren’t they? They’re looking for carbon monoxide. Yeah, I mean, I mean, I mean, shitty. Yeah, that’s the whole thing’s a farce. And it’s a bunch of it’s a scam. It’s a scam on the people. And what’s weird is at some point, we’re going to have to say, why are we allowing this to happen to us when we’re the ones that are supposed to be making the rules?
Roy Merritt 55:00
What starts with the cars and cars rule the road? And I get it, you know, the ULEV and LEV and all that shit. The low emissions vehicles, if you will. I get it. There’s so many cars on the road. Motorcycles don’t take up nearly the percentage of you know, emissions and things like that. So even the cars though as hard on them as you are on the cars is kind of rough, you know? Because let’s face it, I mean, let’s say for the sake of argument, we have 1000 regular customers. Okay? These are customers that don’t go anywhere else. They only come to us, they buy our bikes from us, they only come to us 500 of those customers. I’m going to say ride 5000 miles less a year.
Mike VO 56:02
Probably probably seven okay.
Roy Merritt 56:05
Yeah. 700 out of 1000 will say you know another 210,000 or less a year. And you’re getting down to I would say out of 1000 customers
Mike VO 56:22
Roy Merritt 56:23
maybe ride more than 20 to 25,000 miles a year more.
Mike VO 56:27
I think you’re being very generous with your
Roy Merritt 56:29
Mike VO 56:30
thousand customers. I think you’re being really generous. How you know how many 2017 motorcycles I’ve seen do a 25 k
Roy Merritt 56:41
Yeah, but I mean I’ve had a customer that has an 18 that we’ve done a 35 on just one
Mike VO 56:49
yeah one guy
Roy Merritt 56:52
and and i mean i don’t know what you would do factor in how many regular customers we have maybe thousands I don’t know yeah but I’m just shooting out there
Mike VO 57:00
right but that but you you’re like wow
Roy Merritt 57:02
wow guys you know it’s so rare you remember half a dozen guys are so my last dealership that would ride more than 20,000 miles a year probably more than that. But but that’s like 30 maybe but
Mike VO 57:18
I would say that’s out of every customer in your dealership you had a half a dozen Yeah, you probably have more than 1000 customers
Roy Merritt 57:27
so for the most part most people that are buying bikes just really aren’t you know writing them as much as they should be will say that and I think a lot of that has to do with obviously working in time and things like that people buying it you know they don’t have time but
Mike VO 57:46
well that and their their recreational vehicles
Roy Merritt 57:49
well they are and and that’s what I mean and that was kind of what I was getting at is that should they have the same you know EPA restrictions when 50 to 70% we agree 50% 70 70% of them that are sold never get the kind of mileage that are going to make a difference you know what I mean? Yeah, so why do they crack so you know hard so hard on on like Harley and in Honda and all them they all have to meet the requirements you know, it’s not like Harley is singled out by any means. But for a recreational vehicle. Should it be so stringent? You know? Harley could put out bikes that sound and run a lot better than they do if it wasn’t for all the restrictions that were put on. Do they have to be like the asshole next door with straight pipes? No. Let’s make it sound better. You know even the screaming Eagle pipes that they put out you know
Mike VO 58:56
well part of the EPA compliance is decibel level
Roy Merritt 58:59
Yeah, well that’s what I mean.
Mike VO 59:00
I mean even even back when they first came out with the twin camps the I mean even even the engine itself has to has to fall below a certain decibel level of output. Well yeah, it’s an
Roy Merritt 59:11
overall and like passing by like crazy and RPM or something.
Mike VO 59:16
Yeah, that the parameters are ridiculous. Yeah.
Roy Merritt 59:18
So that was that was and and this was they told me in Milwaukee was that was a lot of the drive to quiet down the motor so that they could open up the exhaust a little bit, which kind of happened in the liquid cooled motors. But nobody really noticed. They were trying to quiet down the motor and when they went to the walkie It was supposed to quiet down quite a bit and they’re a little bit louder. But you don’t notice because the motor so fucking cool. So the whole thing ends up quieter. But that was their aim was to quiet down the motor so they could open up the exhaust. But nobody believes that. If you talk to anybody that listens to a Milwaukee no one would agree with that. Because they don’t seem louder at all.
Mike VO 1:00:09
Roy Merritt 1:00:11
it’s a good platform
Mike VO 1:00:13
in 1999 said exactly the same thing about the Twin Cam, but there was quieter and they didn’t sound like hourly. These are Oh, these are these are bullshit. Now they got Porsche involved blah blah blah. It’s it never the the thing that sucks about the Harley Davidson customer or writer is that they bash their own product so badly nobody else really need needs to get on the platform. They can just stand and listen to the Harley riders bash the Harley’s so I saw a fucking meme the other day and it was like a dude with a purse and like some Daisy Dukes on and it said
Roy Merritt 1:00:57
new soft tail. And then it was like a hot yeah hot chick and then it said like Dinah and I was like you obviously own a diner right? Because if you owned a Milwaukee a soft tail you would talk shit to everybody that fucking wrote a diner because your bikes better than theirs. Oh, yeah. So we had a customer this is this is really good way to customer in today has a heritage one of your favorites. He loves it. He’s in a band. Listen that and he loves bike. He’s like yeah, you know, maybe next year I’m going to trade up to like a Road Glide and do like a big motor bill. Me and Sam are like, why? He’s like, Well, you know, it’d be really cool to have big motor and all that shit and we’re like, do you like your heritage? And he’s like, yeah, love this bike. Like it’s the same motor like we could do big motor build in your heritage has a fucked a road glad Yes. Like never really thought.
Mike VO 1:02:01
Yeah, and we can put bags on it. Yeah, cuz cuz you know, the I fucking hate the Milwaukee heritage. I don’t love it. I hate it because I hate heritage soft tales. I have my whole life. Yeah, and the Milwaukee heritage soft tale rides so good. Yeah, it handles so well. That when I get on one I don’t want to stop writing it and it pisses me the fuck off because they hate the way they look. So the where and this is where I truly believe Harley went wrong with the new soft tail.
Roy Merritt 1:02:31
First off fuck all the old names. Yeah, they should have just to me a heritage soft tail is two tone paint. Chrome everything and white walls
Mike VO 1:02:42
and fringe tea bags.
Roy Merritt 1:02:43
Yeah. Frenchie backs. Exactly. leather bags windshield you know but chrome everything. Two tone paint white walls. That’s a heritage. Not a single heritage is made that way now. Not a single one. So they’re not heritage? Yeah, call it something else. I like it. I love I love the bike. Don’t get me wrong. Just don’t call it a heritage is not a heritage. Let’s not call it
Mike VO 1:03:09
a fat Bob.
Roy Merritt 1:03:11
Okay, because the fat Bob was a Dinah shut everybody the fuck up about it. Let’s not give them anything to talk about. Let’s call it something else. You know what I mean? Why did they have to stick with the names I think this is this is they’re holding on to the old mentality that’s going to hurt them. I think what is going to help them is their new mentality in buying stay sick and pumping up the electric bikes and everything that they’re doing that is outside of what they would normally do is right well and I think that I understand sticking with the names for nostalgia reasons but they are not the same platform there though they’re not go from a diner to a soft tail platform completely changes it so shut everybody up about it and just name it something else name is something fucking cool. I don’t give a shit what you name it
Mike VO 1:04:06
well, so I agree with that and and I hopefully that’s happening in the sports to row.
Roy Merritt 1:04:13
Yeah, because I love my sporty but by by sporty
Mike VO 1:04:16
you gotta get rid of that thing. These, I hope it’s to eat these these new these new liquid cooled v twin 50s 1250s that are coming out are going to replace the Sportster and I’m with you. I love
Roy Merritt 1:04:29
like a revolution. 1250
Mike VO 1:04:32
Well, supposedly, that’s what’s coming out. Yeah, it’s a multi platform. And, yeah,
Roy Merritt 1:04:38
they could make nasty bikes that would fuck
Mike VO 1:04:40
everybody. So here’s what here’s what they need to do, though. We have to embrace that. That the dealership level has to embrace it. Oh, yeah. Because they just need to give me a dual sport.
Roy Merritt 1:04:53
Mike VO 1:04:54
kill it’s what killed the V rod? Yeah, they did not. The problem is when when there’s a huge disconnect, and maybe it’s because the dealerships or franchise? You know,
don’t seem to know what, at the ground level. The trend is coming towards. Well, I think you i think
Roy Merritt 1:05:22
i think was said that they weren’t selling it properly. And I think that you get in being independently owned dealerships and things like that across the country. You get a lot of people that are stuck in the older mentality, like Bryson and Harley cannot make people change their minds on things. Right. So you know, like you said, The Live Wire is going to be interesting to see how people accept that and try and sell it you know what I mean? Because the dealerships
Mike VO 1:05:55
Yeah. Because level because you know, here here Harley introduces this river missionary bike. It’s amazing. Well, right. Yeah. But the amount of backlash is for now is is phenomenal. equal to the amount of acceptance and and and like they come out with these new soft tails they do leave the Dinah right. Yeah, it’s the right move. It was absolutely the right move. It is the it is on a fantastic platform. They really scored but just as many people are pissed about it, because and these people never they haven’t written them there though. They’re they’re stuck in the old ways. So you have these people that say Harley needs to come up with something new soon as Harley comes up with something new. They say this is bullshit. What did you do this for? Like you wanted something new? Yeah, but it wasn’t this but what do you want? You want? Well, I want the Dinah back. That’s not new. Yeah. The dad is old news. Our backers what they want buck FX ours. I know, you know if those were, those were the best motorcycles Harley made. That’s why they only made it for what eight years. They made the Sportster that first
Roy Merritt 1:06:57
you know, heavy those frames are
Mike VO 1:06:59
definitely ours are thick and pain in the ass
Roy Merritt 1:07:02
all the way around. And cold look and don’t get me wrong and yeah, their bike you can beat on. They have a very strong frame all you can beat on all Harley’s. We’ve seen it really does. The diner, the diner. The diner is a lot weaker that they brought out after.
Mike VO 1:07:22
Well, I see a hell of a lot more guys wheeling diamonds than I do.
Roy Merritt 1:07:25
I mean, do you really think they went well? Yeah, this FX ours. Awesome. But fuck it. Let’s go back a little bit. And we’ll just do this. No, they took what they learned from the effects are and from the touring bikes and from the XL, and they created the diner. And the diner was supposed to be the best of both worlds. Now everybody loves them. You know? You couldn’t sell one for years. I swear to god it was hard to sell dinette still get so nobody want to know, you know the. When you think of a Harley Davidson depending on your age, and where you’re at you either think of a full bagger or heritage soft tail. Yeah, for the most part,
Mike VO 1:08:09
or the worst, Carly
Roy Merritt 1:08:11
worse worse or Yeah, sports. Sure. Yeah. But for the most part, I would think if you were to put two bikes out there without labeling on them and have the most people grab them as Harley’s it would be a full dresser and a heritage soft and you know why? Because you could put a Yamaha bolt up there. And people would say as a
Mike VO 1:08:28
Sportster. Yeah. But you know, you know, with the heritage? Well, probably both those bikes, you know why? Because here’s one thing that Harley Davidson has excelled at. They look so close to the way they looked 50 years ago. Yeah, that the iconic image has maintained and that that I think is probably why Harley Davidson is as prolific as it is because they’ve done they’ve done a phenomenal job of being in they’re in the company’s own terms. an evolutionary company Yeah. Not a revolutionary company. And now they’re becoming revolutionary acceptable choice. Well, they have to we have no choice any absolutely you know, and and I think it’s fantastic.
Roy Merritt 1:09:14
Well, for the most part that’s that’s kind of argument same on the same side with with the heritage is if they did two tone paint chrome everything and white walls, you could you could park one next to 150 years ago and go Wow, that’s a new model of that and that right fucking cool. Yeah, it’s got these funky ass lights on it. Yeah, everything’s not shaped exactly the same. But when you pull one up next to it, that’s all blacked out and has some chrome stuff and you park it next to it you’re like yeah, yeah, I see it. Some of the very early ones were kind of blacked out anyways. But I think for the most part they
Mike VO 1:09:54
they did the slims It was kind of a variation of the
Roy Merritt 1:09:58
yeah and this but the slums always been a all
Mike VO 1:10:00
right but i mean i mean it was like it was like that bad boy heritage Yeah, the slim was when when everything was getting fat tires about the rocker rocker and you know another terrible bike that they make right now is the fat boy
it is it’s a neat looking motorcycle. It handles like it handles like
Roy Merritt 1:10:24
it’s a V rod no put that thing on the drag strip who would fucking probably
Mike VO 1:10:28
know it wouldn’t the fucking back tire weighs more than a V rod. Same tired Yeah, without all the horsepower
Roy Merritt 1:10:37
depends on your fat
Mike VO 1:10:38
dude. The Fat Boy you know we’ve got if you’re listening Joe, I apologize. motorcycle is terrible for everyday writing and media but good morning for that anyway. No, he’s no he’s he wants to go fast as shit and
Roy Merritt 1:10:56
that’s what we’re doing for him and and it’s a bike that will hold the road well and hold him well, but I don’t.
Mike VO 1:11:03
I don’t know why.
You know, I understand the predicament that companies get into, because if you look at even like Chevrolet and Ford, they’re in the same predicament. Okay, Chevrolet is coming out with a new blazer. It’s going to look nothing like a blazer. It’s going to be terrible. Just like the Nova when they brought the Nova back out. You’re like, what in the shit is that? That’s not a Chevrolet Nova. Well, just for a short time, and then it didn’t sell because we was like the Malibu they. So forward is bringing back the bronco. And from everything I’ve heard, it’s going to be a square body. Truck frame looks cool. Looking full size. Bronco, well, Chevrolet. If you’re going to bring back the blazer, you need to bring back a blazer not Equinox with a different tag on it.
Roy Merritt 1:12:01
I guess I guess Ford had the bronco to
Mike VO 1:12:05
which was the emission compliant
Roy Merritt 1:12:06
had a bronco to on like 35 with like some fucking love that truck. It was absolutely horrible inside of it though. All red interior. It made me want to throw up. But it was meant I mean, it was a good day. It was fucking bought. It was so amazing. And this thing was a burgundy and silver two tone Bronco to 35 inch tires. Like I said six and a half inch Rancho suspension. It was done a really nice, really nice truck. And I got it from my uncle had 35 1550s on it. Okay, they fucking looked. It looked mean, it looked really mean. But they were like kind of highway tread tires. They weren’t mud tires, you know what I mean? So it just it looked big. And it was a it was an everyday driver. I didn’t realize but I warn the tires out my own go ahead and f1 50 with 35 1250 s on it, but they were like alterations. They weren’t quite as wide. But they were altering good looking tire. He was putting bigger on his truck. So he’s like, hey, do you want these tires? Yes, I do. The prices right? So I put them on the truck.
Mike VO 1:13:17
Roy Merritt 1:13:24
Everywhere you go, I sold it two weeks later. I could not stand it. And it might have not have been two weeks might have been a month. But I think I drove it around for two weeks. And I had a date and I took this chick out. I don’t remember who
Mike VO 1:13:38
but I really need to talk to you know,
Roy Merritt 1:13:40
yeah, that was out. And I’m like, yeah, so blah, blah, blah, like yelling at her in the truck. And I was like, Oh, this is not gonna work. So I ended up selling it right after I buried it in the mud. So funny story I was it was Sunday morning. And I showed up to work at nine o’clock like it was every other day. And I didn’t have my cell phone This is years ago. So I my cell phone or anything. And I was like talking for like two and a half hours until I got to be at work, you know, you know, up until like, 1130 whatever it was. So I take this Bronco out and I’m digging around and there’s a dried up lake bed. Like oh, cool. You know, screw around the lake bed. And you know as it dries up, there’s always like the last little bit well it was dried up as well. like to tell you on the top you could tell that what was mud and what was and I knew better. So I see it and there’s like two tracks where somebody in truck went through it you know might as well be a goddamn invitation. Okay, come drive through me so of course you you don’t you don’t just put it in four wheel drive because that’s how dumb ass you know do it. So I put in two wheel drive run into this thing and get like halfway through it and bury the rear axles like shit. Alright, so I had already left hubs you know put it in four wheel drive back back out. I’m gonna make this because I’m a fucking idiot. So I give it hell I get back in it. I bury the rear axle again. This time put in four wheel drive go to put it in reverse the front axle gets buried and I’m like shit and I work this thing back and forth for at least five minutes and you know all that does is bear you more right right or more no cell phone bill awake in a fucking neighborhood in Lake Mary Florida. And I’m like should be fucking shouldn’t be. So I watched like two miles to a gas station called mobile. And you know it’s all Ford Chevy. Everything’s Ford. Chevy. Of course. I’m driving a Ford. So I call my buddy. He’s got Chevy. Like, Hey, I’m stuck in the mud. I need some mile. And he’s like, Oh, Mother, if I you know. Chevy Ford. Oh, you’re fucking floored. You should have bought a goddamn Chevy. And you know, I have to eat my humble pie. And I’m like, you know? Yeah, man. Yeah, I bought a Ford. Come pull me out, please. So he shows up z 71. jacked up. We’re talking thing. It’s the button on its electronic four wheel drive. Nothing. So now he can’t pull me out because he didn’t have four wheel drive to see his Chevy because he has. So now it really starts it. I’m like, Oh, yeah, you’re talking shit about my Ford. But here it is time for the real deal and your Chevy and cache at least my Ford spinning all four wheels in the mud. You know? So we call another guy shows up for the Chevy. I don’t remember exactly what happened with him, but he could not get me out either. So now it’s you know, Ford, negative one, Chevy negative two. And it took another Ford to get me out of course. Because you know, I think they can pull forward out of the mud is Ford. And sure enough, you know, got my buddy he had a big ass for it. He came on gang me out like I was a piece of trash. And then you know, pulled the other Chevy’s out. Because they were trashed. Yeah, you know. Bronco to the blazer they did the S 10. The mid range, but the 10 blazer was always like a mom’s car. I mean, it was never it was the bronco to was cool. It was like windows rolled up decides like that was shit you wanted to take out in the fuckin you know, the Safari or whatever, because it was cool. The blazer was never really getting the same thing. Not the 10 blazer. You know, the the big blazer was always badass. But the little blazers not so much so.
Mike VO 1:18:12
Roy Merritt 1:18:15
I don’t know, man. I think we kind of gotten a little off topic here. We’re talking for a motorcycle rz on the motorcycle podcast, but hey, that’s
Mike VO 1:18:26
what but but you know, the topic. Just the r&d that the company is go through. I mean, some you don’t really know what to do. I don’t think
Roy Merritt 1:18:38
these guys really know. That’s what racing is, man. That’s, that’s why we’re on the racing time. They don’t know shit, man. They’re like, hey, how do we get more horsepower without changing the restrictor plate without doing this? Without doing that? And that’s how they get into weird shit in a weird porting into what was it? What was Aaron said?
Unknown Speaker 1:18:59
Like free easing? fuel lines, freezing your fuel lines?
Roy Merritt 1:19:03
Yeah. Who would have thought of that smart idea? You know, you cool the fuel down. I guess it atomized is better. It’s denser. However, that works. I don’t know. I’m sure there’s well, like,
Mike VO 1:19:15
you know, Ferrari. in Formula One. They did that with the airports that run through the cars. Yeah. So they had a hole in the cockpit. And when they would go into corners, they would take their hand off the whole, it would go into corners and it would pull the air through the cockpit of the car and help pull the car to the ground. And then when they would hit the straightaways, they would take their hand off the wheel and pop right on the side of the cockpit. You know, this cockpits are designed around the driver. So it’s not like they have to move very far. Yeah. So when they’re trying to make maximum speed, they cover this little hole. And everybody else’s What the fuck is that? So what it did was it changed the aerodynamic flow and lifted the back of the car. Yeah, as the air
Roy Merritt 1:20:04
bypassed the vacuum insiders. Yeah.
Mike VO 1:20:07
So when they pulled their hand off the off the cockpit, the air would create a vacuum and suck the floor, suck the cockpit in the back of the car down. When they cover the whole it would lift it off the ground. I mean, you’re talking like, maybe a half of an inch.
At 190 miles an hour. Yeah, half an inch can make 194 miles
Roy Merritt 1:20:26
an hour. So do you remember the 300 ZX twin turbo, early 90, early mid 90s was like a really hot car will better friend bought one. And if you took one of those cars and like sat it still and just turn the wheel all the way to the left. Let’s see would the left rear corner would drop like an inch. And you can see it sitting still. I did it did even sitting still. And then if you went to the right, it would lift back up and the right side would drop to an inch. And the idea was the role in a turn, you know when you start turning right. And that car wants to roll to the left it would drop that suspension down to level. Our buddy had fallen into that guy as cool as Okay, you want to see something cool. And I showed him that and he was like, What? I didn’t even know that. And I was like yeah, these things are pretty badass. And they were cool cars. But yeah, yeah, there’s so much technology. You think that came from racing?
Mike VO 1:21:29
Roy Merritt 1:21:30
Did they didn’t just do that? That should came out of probably Formula One or I don’t know if the Sonos Formula One but came out of some kind of racing. So
Mike VO 1:21:41
Roy Merritt 1:21:43
I don’t know, man, I think we’ve wrapped up some time here. The The irony here the stuff
Mike VO 1:21:56
Roy Merritt 1:21:58
Yeah, let’s try.
Mike VO 1:22:02
Well, I think what,
you know, Harley really screwed up with 750. The GSRSGXGXG. Yeah. I don’t even know the goddamn nomenclature of Steve.
Roy Merritt 1:22:19
Yeah, yeah, it’s under the streets underpowered overweight.
Mike VO 1:22:23
Well, you know, if they, if they’re gonna, if they’re going to design those to be low, to be what they are, they should not have made a racing class with them. If they’re going to make a racing class with them, then they should open it up for racing parts, and not piss off their long term partners like s&s and all these companies that that’s what they that’s what they do.
Feels like the company
has gotten away from its heritage.
And they’re moving into out of desperation. They’re moving away from the things that are going to help it in the future.
Roy Merritt 1:23:00
Well, I did you see so I can hear the guitar gone? They got into surfing. You see this? No. Harley Davidson is sponsoring like a bunch of world events that said that surfers are 400 and something percent more likely to have ridden a motorcycle than anybody else. And like 200 and something percent more likely to buy a motorcycle in the next year or two. So who don’t
Unknown Speaker 1:23:34
wear that book? Are they getting their statistics? I don’t know man.
Roy Merritt 1:23:37
It was pretty crazy.
Mike VO 1:23:39
They should give a bunch of them away and have them spray paint them.
Roy Merritt 1:23:43
So Harley and surfing, wrap your head around that
Transcribed by https://otter.ai