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Topic: MN to NYC and Mt. Washington  (Read 6054 times)

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naustin
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« on: July 31, 2008, 03:25:42 pm »

This ride report is going to be a little different than most.  I have over 600 pictures, but I made a 20min video slide show complete with a few videos and Google Earth animations.  Rather than intersperse pictures with the text, I'll post the video in 4 segments, and with each video post, I'll include some text narration.  My wife took all the pictures and videos from the pillion while the bike was moving, and she did a great job...

Part#1




Introduction

Last Fall, my wife decided that she wanted to visit some friends in NYC.  I told her that sounded great, but that the only way I would go was if we did the trip on the bike.  And that is really when it all started.

I spent a great deal of time over the winter planning the route.  I bought my wife all new gear, got us both new helmets and boots, and also picked up a new Zumo and a Starcom.  In the spring, I mounted a set of ME880 tires, changed all the fluids – including the brake fluid and fork oil, and just generally prepared the bike for what I planned to be about 10 days and 3,000 miles.

A week before our scheduled departure date, I noticed a new vibration in my handlebar.  Upon inspection, I found my front engine mount (vibration isolator) had failed.  I had replaced it ~ 10,000 mi when I found the original had a small crack, but now this 2nd isolator was completely shredded only 5,000 mi later.

After my vision came back to me and I put the door to the garage back on its hinges, I called my local Harley dealership – fully knowing that they would not have the part in stock.  Eventually I managed to get them to overnight the part from another dealership – and while that week was filled with nail-biting, explicatives, and worry, the part arrived two days before we were to leave and I was able to get it replaced.



Day 1

We left early on a Saturday morning headed across southern MN and northern IA for Milwaukee where we had reservations for the Lake Express Ferry.  We stuck to the back roads most of the day, and I had traveled many of the routes before.  The Northeast corner of Iowa around Dorchester and down to the Mississippi river is truly a beautiful area.  We crossed the bridge at Lansing, IA and then continued through the bluffs and Apple Orchards of rural Wisconsin, skirting the north side of Madison into lake country and then running the interstates across Milwaukee to the ferry terminal.  There had been an unusual fog all day and it was especially think on the lake shore.  Loading on the ferry was uneventful and the ride itself was smooth and quiet.  We got a good view of the sunset once we got out on the lake, and the 80 mile crossing took about 2.5 hours.  Once in Michigan, we had a 20 mile run to our hotel, and we met a pair of couples from Ontario on Goldwings who wanted to follow us across Muskegon to our hotel since we had a GPS and they did not – and were off their planned route.  I got their names and email, but the scrape of paper was later ruined in a rainstorm – soaked along with everything else in my wallet.

Day 2

The goal for the day was to make Niagara Falls ~ 400ish miles ~ in time to ride the Maid of the Mist.  We ran across southern Michigan along a river road at first, and then on a county highway that was very straight, and very long, but still quite beautiful in its own way.   The fog we had outrun crossing lake Michigan the evening before had overtaken us again and we road though some light rain intermittently.  Our quiet, peaceful rural highway ran us straight into the heart of Flint, Michigan and I missed my turn.  The faithful Zumo handled it with ease, but routed us though a very interesting neighborhood to put us back on course.  Now -- I like to think I've been around and seen the underside of the leaf litter, but I must admit that the woman who crossed the road in front of us at an intersection in that rather deplorable area of Flint was the first honest-to-god crack whore I have ever seen in person.  It was just like “Cops!”  From there, in the interest of making time to explore Niagara Falls, we took I-69 to Port Huron and Crossed into Ontario at Sarnia and followed 402 – 403 all the way to Hamilton and then to Niagara Falls.

We stayed on Lundy's Lane on the Canadian side in an older “Howard Johnson” motel.  It looked nice from the outside, but my wife was not impressed with the dried traces of projectile vomit that could be found on the walls if one looked too closely.  We took a bus and less then 6 blocks from our motel, on the main road leading to The Falls we passed the SWAT team raiding a house, which made us feel even better about the old, dried vomit back in our hotel room.  The falls themselves were nice and we got soaked on the boat ride.  The camera got waterlogged and nearly expired.  Afterward, we decided to try to get back to our room without getting mugged and make sure the bike hadn't been stolen, and then we would just hide-out until sunrise when we calculated we would have the best chance to escape this horrible place.

Day 3

I was looking forward to the Catskills.  We stayed off the freeway and followed HWY 20 to the finger lakes, and and followed the shoreline of Lake Cayuga to Ithica, NY.  All beautiful country and we passed many wineries, but did not stop at any.  From then we took Hwy 79 to Route 206 and it was all very nice compared to the flatlands of southern Minnesota.  When we got to the Catskills it was getting hot and we were ahead of schedule, so we decided to get touristy and see what there was to see in Woodstock.  All we found was traffic and large pasty people in T-shirts and we were a little revolted, so, we bought another liter of water to refill the Camelbak and pushed on.  Our destination for the day was Sleepy Hollow where we have friends and a bed waiting for us on the 3rd floor of a condo with our own balcony and a view of the Tappen Zee bridge and Manhattan in the distance.  Once out of the Catskills, we followed 9W which was a mistake.  I nearly got heatstroke and began to swear uncontrollably.  Eventually, I decided that I would use my powers for evil instead of good and began to take control of the traffic situation by exercising the bike a little bit.  Soon, we were there...




Stay Tuned...  The next installment is NYC and Vermont, with a Twist...
« Last Edit: July 31, 2008, 06:24:11 pm by naustin » Logged

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« Reply #1 on: July 31, 2008, 06:00:23 pm »

Part#2



Day 4

We got up and going around 10:00am this day and caught the commuter train into Grand Central Station.  From there we walked over to Times Square and hopped on one of the Double Decker bus tours which took us south through toward the financial district, past the Staten Island Ferry and then back north to Central Park.  It was a narrated tour and the guide pointed out all the touristy stuff people like to have pointed out.  I actually rather enjoyed it and being that we only planned to be in the city for one day, it was a good way to see the sights quickly and easily.  At central park, we hopped off the bus and got a hotdog from a street vendor, and then walked though the park up to the Natural History Museum.  The T-Rex and the Brontosaurus weren't as big as they were in my imagination or in Jurassic Park - which is really pretty cool.  The fact that they were smaller made them easier to relate to and to envision as being real living things that really did walk around.

Then we caught a cab down to Greenwich Village and walk 6 or 7 blocks until we found a nice little Italian restaurant.  It was the first time I'd ever had fresh pasta – as in it was made earlier in the day and had never been dried out and boiled.  It was SO good.  Another cab ride back to Grand Central Station and we caught the train back to our friends condo.

Day 5

Up at 6:00 to a downpour.  We waited until 10:00 and then left in moderate rain, headed for Mt. Washington.  Today's route followed the Taconic Parkway until we were north of I-84 and then we got off on the back roads, Cte Rt 9 to Rt 22 to Rt 44 and eventually, Hwy 7, hwy 8 in Vermont now, and then to VT 100.  It was foggy, drizzly and absolutely awesome, even though there weren't much for views.  We cut across to New Hampshire on the Sawyer Highway and stopped at a little Italian restaurant overlooking a waterfall just east of Lincoln and then headed across the Kankamagus in the fog.  The higher the elevation, the less we could see, and over the highest part of the pass, we couldn't see the tops of the trees along the road.  Even at 20mph, I would have plowed into a moose, if there had been any just standing in the road.  

At some point in Vermont, possibly on the Sawyer Highway, I managed to warp my front brake.  It had always had a little pulse in it, but it got really bad really fast.  I'm assuming it's warped, but it seemed to get better and then worse again the rest of the trip.  I thought about that warped brake a lot the rest of the trip every time we saw Moose warning signs.  

That night we holed up in North Conway, NH at a very nice motel called the Maple Leaf, Inn.  It was family run, very clean, quiet and nice.  There were several other motorcyclists there and the rate was very reasonable.  I highly recommend it.  The proprietor was very friendly and excited to hear about our trip and made sure to give me a couple of older towels to wipe down my bike in the morning.  Best motel of the trip.

Day 6:   And now the twist...

We woke up today to storms and decided right away that we would stay an extra night here, do some laundry and if the weather broke later in the day, try to do some light hiking.  We were very content and having a wonderful time.  It had been 4 days riding and about 1,500 miles since I had replaced my Front Isolator just before we left and I have been keeping a close eye on it the whole trip.  This morning, while I was looking over the bike like I do every morning I noticed that it had completely and totally failed for the second time in a week.  
I was devastated.

For those who do not own an older Buell, I will explain:  The engine on a Buell is supported at only 3 points.  The swing arm attaches to the transmission and frame at the swing arm pivot point and that counts for 2.  The only other supporting point between the engine and the frame is the front isolator.  There are several tie bars that limit side to side movement, but they are are not rigid in the vertical plane and allow the engine to move up and down. Buell holds a patent on this system and they call it the Uni-Planer engine mounting system.  The problem is, if the front isolator fails, the bolts connecting it to the engine become overstressed.  You can ride the bike with a bad front isolator and you may not even notice any added vibration, but eventually, those mounting bolts will sheer off and your engine will fall forward and contact the frame.  Even if you don't crash and die, you will have Grade 8 hardened steel bolts sheered off in the aluminum head of your engine. Problem number 2 is very few HD dealerships are also Buell dealerships, and even the good ones don't keep a lot of parts in stock.  I had a hard time getting this part when I was at home and had a week to find one.  The chances of finding one in a few days while on the road was painfully slim.

There was a Harley dealer in North Conway, N.H. (Merideth Harley Davidson and Buell) And they even were also a Buell dealership, and I gave it a 1% chance they'd have the part, and a 50% chance that their service department would be Buell Friendly.  We rode the bike over there when they opened at 9:00 and I went in to take to the service writer.  I can not exaggerate how TERRIBLE they are at MERIDETH HARLEY DAVIDSON AND BUELL in North Conway, N.H.  The mechanics were literally glaring at my wife and I and our bike.  The service guy told me they didn't have any parts for any buell and he didn't want to waste my time trying to help me.  His basic attitude with me was “Tough Shit.”  

So, we left and went back to the hotel room.  We decided to cancel the rest of our trip, throw out all our plans and take fastest way home on the freeways so we would have the best chance of finding a dealership along the way that could help us.  Despite the weather, we packed up and headed back south.  People died that day in that storm.  The rain was torrential.  There was a freak New England tornado somewhere in MA and several people were struck my lightning.  Riding at all was pretty stupid.

We stopped in Springfield, MA for lunch and looked in the Yellow Pages for a dealership.  I called one 20 miles south “TSI” and spoke to a woman in the service department whose name escapes me at the moment, but I think I wrote it down.  She was very helpful and after 3 or 4 phone calls she said my best bet to get back on the road the quickest was to go down to Danbury where they had the part in stock – so we plugged Danbury, CT into the GPS and headed out.  Later in the day the rain subsided and we got to the dealership at 5:30.  

Danbury HD and Buell was the best dealership I have ever been inand that goes for any brand of bike and even all the car and truck dealerships I have ever been to..  They had set the part aside and were expecting me.  They were going to be open until 8:00 pm and offered to get it done yet that day!  We were staying overnight anyway, so I happily told them the next day would still be better than I had hoped.  They were having a BBQ for their customers and we got a free Brat.  There was a Hotel across the street.  Fully ½ the staff rode Buells and the Service Manager and Mechanic took extra time to talk to me and really make sure they did the best job they could.  The bill was $100 less than I expected.  They washed my bike.  The sales manager was really friendly and spent time chatting with us while we waited about Buells and they way they run their show and had not of that sales-guy persona – he was just a nice guy!  I left a tip with the service manager.  I have only the highest praise for the guys at Danbury.  

They couldn't find anything else wrong with the bike, or explain the multiple failures.  They speculated that the rear mounts at the swing arm might be bad, even though they looked fine, but everything else was aligned and seemed to be right where it belonged.  The one isolator they did have was the only one, so I couldn't get a spare, and they didn't have the rears either.  So we decided to continue on.


Next segment is my favorite part of the trip!

Edit Whoops! Day 7 is supposed to be in here too... Keep an eye out, I'll include it at the top of the next post.
« Last Edit: July 31, 2008, 06:44:15 pm by naustin » Logged

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« Reply #2 on: July 31, 2008, 07:55:42 pm »

Great job on those vids.  The animated Google Earth overviews are fantastic.  I'm enjoying this trip.   Thumbsup
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« Reply #3 on: July 31, 2008, 10:23:35 pm »

Terrific ride report.  Great music.  And your wife...what a trooper she is.  
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« Reply #4 on: July 31, 2008, 11:39:03 pm »

Thanks guys.  Here are the notes from Day 7, this should have been at the end of the prior post as the pictures are at the end of video Part#2  Wink

Day 7

The bike wasn't to be ready until later in the morning so we slept in and enjoyed several cups of coffee.  The hotel had a coffee machine that made every cup individually and was like a cross between a Jukebox and a French Press.  It made a pretty good cup of coffee and I filled up.

We said our thank you's and goodbye's to the guys at Danbury and were on the road again before noon.  After some debate, we decided that we would risk another failure and continue on the original route rather than head for home.  So, I told the GPS to get me back to where we left off in NH via the fastest possible route, which turned out to take us around Boston and very close to the coast.   I had never seen the ocean in person, or tasted saltwater in my life.  I always considered the Great Lakes big enough that the difference was negligible, but still – they aren't the real deal.  So, I zoomed in to the the area closest to the coast from the freeway and set my way point where the GPS marked “Beach.”  I didn't know if this was a public beach, or private land, or maybe some kind of park, but I figured we'd find our way when we got there.

When we got there, we were at Hampton Beach!  The traffic was ridiculous – and then I remembered it was 3 o'clock on a Friday.  Good timing, eh?  We drove north a while along the shore and passed a place called Rye Beach too.  We stopped somewhere and stripped off our gear and waded into the ocean.  I tasted the water and it was just – well, salty water.  Somehow I expected there to be more to it.
We only stayed at the beach about ½ an hour and then geared up and headed out.  By now the traffic was even worse and it seemed to take hours just to get back onto the toll road, but eventually we got ahead of the hoards and back into the happiness of conifer trees and distant mountains and not too many cars.

That night we stayed at the same motel we had been in 2 nights before.  Did I mention that 2 nights ago our room was number 13?  This time we got the last room and it was #5, which is my wife's lucky number.  All was well in the world again and we were very happy.
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« Reply #5 on: August 01, 2008, 12:07:43 am »



Day 8

Today is the big day.  Mt. Washington.  My wife thought this trip was to visit friends in NYC.  But, for me at least, Mt Washington was the reason for this trip.  The park and the road opened at 7:30 and we were there shortly after.  All the storms of the last several days had blown themselves out and the sky was the most perfect blue and the winds were calm and the visibility was good.  

The road was steeper than I expected and while I could have done it in 2nd gear, we ended up running the entire 6 miles in 1st at 15 – 20 mph.  The views were spectacular and we both felt like we were entering a magical place.  For me, it was very satisfying to ascend this mountain that 2 days prior seemed to have slipped out of my reach.  My wife, Ann, wrote 6 postcards while we were at the top and mailed them in the Park Service mail box at the visitor center on the top.  Meanwhile, I sat on a rock and just watched the clouds build and dance over the summit and I just sat and sipped coffee and watched the forest below slowly wake up as the sun rose over the peaks.

I was worried about going down because I had that badly warped front rotor.  The brake would do its job, but it was quite a show.  In the end, I coasted down the mountain in 1st gear and the big 1200cc twin was quite happy with the grade which kept the revs right in the sweet spot and in hardly need to touch the brakes all the way to the bottom.

We left Mt. Washington and tagged Maine since we were so close, just for the fun of it, and then headed across New Hampshire to the Green Mountains.  We rode though Montpelier down 100 and then over the pass on Hwy 17.  What a wonderful road!  I had been riding conservatively the whole trip for a lot of reasons.  We were 2up, I'm from a state without corners, my front brake is an instant washboard, etc.  But here, I had some fun.  On the way up, there was a guy in front of my on a small bike that looked to be something of a DIY SuperMoto.  He was in a t-shirt and I assumed he was local and knew the road so I decided I'd just match his pace.  My wife got a video of the most exhilarating corner I have ever enjoyed.  I wish I could have seen myself go around it.  We both were laughing and giggling in our helmets we were having so much fun!

At the top, Mister Moto gave me a hand signal to slow down and a few seconds later, just over the crest on a blind corner there was a tow truck and a trooper and a crashed bike.  Thanks to whoever that was...

We crossed the plain leading to Lake Champlain and rode into the Adirondacks.  A storm blew up suddenly and caught us out and we holed up for the night in Lake Placid. I didn't want to stop there, fearing that it would be overrun with tourists (which it was) but the price for the room was not bad considering I was a motorcyclist soaking wet in a thunderstorm who was quite obviously ready to accept the price whatever it was.  It was 4:30 and by 5:30 the sun was out and it was beautiful riding weather again, but we were happy to stay put for the night.

What a day!



Back into Ontario tomorrow.
« Last Edit: August 01, 2008, 12:17:38 am by naustin » Logged

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« Reply #6 on: August 01, 2008, 01:12:13 am »



Edit - Video is now live...

Day 9

We got up early and pulled out of Lake Placid heading across the Adirondacks for Ogdinsburg and the bridge over the St. Lawrence.  There was hardly any traffic and we saw many dear – Does with fawns that still had their spots.  We were so glad that we were able to continue our planed route and head home though the trees and the southern reaches of the boreal forest rather than across a thousand miles of corn in Ohio, Indiana, Illinois and Iowa.

We rode on some pretty lonely roads in Ontario; many had no shoulder and no stripes and one turned to gravel for a while.  I had intentionally avoided the main highways, but when I started looking for fuel and all I could find was shacks with one or two old fashioned style pumps (all full service, oddly)  I started to think it may have been a mistake.  Finally I pulled into one of these “Woods” stations and all was well.  We were heading north west toward Algonquin park and looking desperately to see a Moose.  When we got to Algonquin, we took a short hike into the woods and see the inside of the forest.

The end of the day brought us to the famous ON 518.  This road was crazy.  Parts of it were tight and pretty cool, but the pavement (if you can call it pavement) was like nothing I had ever seen.  It was like gravel with tar poured over it, and I didn't trust it.  And then, it turned into construction and there was several miles of dirt – not gravel – Dirt.  It was slow going.

At the end of 518 was Parry Sound, ON and we found a Comfort Inn.  I checked the bike and was not surprised to find the front isolator was trashed AGAIN for the 3rd time in 2 weeks.  I had begun to noticed heavier vibration in the bars earlier in the day and was certain that the mount was beginning to fail again, but refused to look at it until the day was done.

At this point, I'm sick of the bike, sick of Buell in general, and sick of being sick about it; so we went out for Pizza and I put down 2 pints of Labatt's Blue and went to bed.

Day 10

Parry Sound is a city of less than 6,000 people and it is in BFE.  We're 900 miles from home, there is 0% chance of any dealership having the part, and an ?% chance we can make it home without a catastrophic failure of the head mounting bolts.  I started to wonder what the rules were with respect to renting Uhauls and driving them across international boarders.

There was no hesitation – we decided to burn for home, to hell with the bike and it if grenades, we'll cut it up into little pieces and bury it if we can't rent a truck to haul it home.

We drove straight though from Parry Sound to Sault St. Marie where we were delayed about an hour at the boarder waiting for the line, and then across the UP of Michigan to Ironwood.  It was about 7pm and we'd done 610 miles.  That's the furthest we've ever ridden in one day – not bad for 2up on a Buell, especially considering the speed limits in Canada were around 65 and once we got back into the States, were were on a state highway all day with lots of towns and a 55mph speed limit.

The mount was bad, and my hands were numb, sore and even a little bruised from the vibration in the handlebars, but it didn't appear to have gotten worse, and the bolts were holding out.  We only had 350 miles to go to make it home.


Day 11   Final Day

I was up at 6:30 and the forcast was not good. There were strong storms closing in from the Northwest.  There was no way to avoid the rain, and throughout the day it was only going to deteriorate, so we decided to get moving and try to run for better weather to the south as soon as possible.

We did about a hundred miles in light to moderate rain before the sky started to look very nasty all of a sudden – and then our road turned directly into it.  There were large pulsing lightning strikes coming down all around us, and the rain was so heavy, I was having a hard time seeing the road at times.  We had no choice but to push though into the next town unless we wanted to stand under a tree and wait for lightning to strike us dead.

Never in my life have I been more happy to see the Golden Arches.

We stopped and had coffee and after about ½ an hour to 40 minutes the storm had passed and we rode into blue skies to the south.  Crossing the bridge from Wisconsin back into Minnesota was a good feeling because we knew that we were close enough to home that if the bike did strand us, we could handle it and still be home that day.

We stopped at a friends house near the Mississippi river and stayed an hour or so for some coffee and conversation before heading out for home.  After all this riding, I was struck at just how straight and flat Southern Minnesota is.  Its unreal, almost.  Dust off a clearing and you could shoot pool right on the ground anywhere you look.

And then, we were home.  I looked at the front isolator after we got settle in and one of the two bolts connecting the isolator to the head had sheered off sometime and the bolt was just sitting in the bracket ¾ of an inch backed out.  It must have happened within the last few miles to home or else the bolt would have vibrated all the way out and fallen on the ground.  A few more miles and the bracket itself would have broken and the engine would have fallen forward, hit the frame, and if we were moving, may have cause me to lose control.  Don't they always say most crashes happen five miles from home?

We're lucky to be alive.  I don't know what it will take to get the bike fixed, but its almost fitting that when I got off of it at the end of this 11 day trip, it may have been for the last time.
« Last Edit: August 01, 2008, 09:58:15 am by naustin » Logged

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« Reply #7 on: August 01, 2008, 11:10:55 am »

Naustin, Sweet ride report!  Nice videos too, congrats goes to your wife for a great job!  I read your problems on the BadWeb.  Sorry man, that sucks.  

It was nice to recognize areas of your tour! We were here last fall for a trip to Portland...
http://i206.photobucket.com/albums/bb184/mastros2/NH1A.jpg

On the way back from Portland, we stayed the night but it was a Saturday night after the dealership closed.  I'll remember the nice things you said about them.
http://i206.photobucket.com/albums/bb184/mastros2/DanburyCT.jpg

« Last Edit: August 01, 2008, 11:51:57 am by Mastros2 » Logged

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« Reply #8 on: August 01, 2008, 11:30:50 am »

Awesome report. Thumbsup  You should have looked me up for a quick detour of LI, including crowd-free beach!  
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« Reply #9 on: August 01, 2008, 04:50:06 pm »

Wow great report - wife a trooper

Sounds like a new ride is in the offering

U rode thru some great areas - in NYS & NH, VT

Can't wait for my ride to Indy for MotoGP - Via West Va
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« Reply #10 on: August 02, 2008, 09:50:09 pm »

Enjoyed your report especially the vids, Great work.  Sorry for the you (& the Tuber).  Took the lemons, made lemonade & made it home, barely.  Hopefully you can find the real cause and fix it.
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« Reply #11 on: August 02, 2008, 11:17:06 pm »

I don't know.  I was probably over the GVWR on this trip, and that likly contributed.  But still....  THe bike is like a drug addicted kid.  I love it, but I'll never fully trust it ever again.  Happily, unlike a kid, I'm not stuck with the damn thing.  Bigsmile It's getting sold off like Grandma's fake jewelry...  Lol

I should be able to get the bike road worthy again realitively cheap.  I'm about () that far from pulling the trigger on a new `07 ST1300 or an `08 FJR...  The Buell has offically gone on the block over at the Buell Owners forums....

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« Reply #12 on: August 03, 2008, 01:09:45 am »

Nice report. Sorry about the bike & dealer problems. That's the first time I've ever heard of a dealer not helping people on the road.  Sad

Interesting use of Google Earth  Thumbsup

Kudos to the spousal unit for the great camera work  Clap
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naustin
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« Reply #13 on: August 05, 2008, 11:21:04 am »

Buell is SOLD pending pickup...  Put down a deposit for a brand new `07 ST1300 yesterday and hopefully will have it by Saturday.  Bigok
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nnjhawk02
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« Reply #14 on: August 05, 2008, 11:47:15 am »


Buell is SOLD pending pickup...  Put down a deposit for a brand new `07 ST1300 yesterday and hopefully will have it by Saturday.  Bigok


Smart Move - Good Luck
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« Reply #15 on: August 07, 2008, 02:53:34 pm »

Wow this is a fantastic ride report. The way you incorporated the animated google earth, photos, and text is great. I really got a vivid picture of your ride.

About the buell, I was very close to buying a 98; until I test rode it. The thing had more shake than any bike I've ever felt. Now I'm thinking it might be for the same reason as yours. Either way, after riding it I was set on not owning any buells. Great trip Nice report!
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« Reply #16 on: August 07, 2008, 08:45:18 pm »

Wow, great ride report.  I loved your videos and the innovative way you integrated Google Earth into it.  Onboard shots were cool too.

Your report gave me a new appreciation for my own backyard, which I take for granted from time to time.  Loved your enthusiasm.

BTW, I emailed the Harley dealership, just cuz I think people should be called on their behavior.  If anyone else is so inclined their email address is http://[email protected]

They claim to be:
"...a small, friendly, full line delership (sic) committed to providing you the services and products you desire."

However their website also points out:

Quote
We offer the finest selection of riding gear, clothing and collectibles you'll see anywhere.
 Twofinger
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naustin
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« Reply #17 on: August 07, 2008, 08:57:05 pm »

I posted the same ride report over at BWB and 2 or 3 other buell guys reported also having crappy treatment in Conway.  Then, the manager chick of the dealership posted up with her first post to say I should have talked to her directly and that she hoped that we'd give them another chance.   Lol  I think the store in Conway is a satellite store of a bigger dealer.  Its funny that you sent an email.  Bigok  She must be feeling some heat.

This isn't baseball.  It's one strike and you're out in the real-world as far as I'm concerned and the treatment I got was more like getting intentionally beaned with a 90mph fastball anyway.

I can't say enough good things about Danbury HD and Buell Thumbsup Thumbsup, however.  
« Last Edit: August 07, 2008, 08:59:40 pm by naustin » Logged

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« Reply #18 on: August 08, 2008, 09:55:47 am »

Here's the emailed response from the manager:

Quote
Unfortunately I don’t think that they portrayed a complete story. Nor was I given an opportunity to speak with them about their situation? Our dealership does not do business like that. And if one of my employees came across that way, I would hope that a customer would come to me, as the manager, to let me know, so I could insure that they received the service they required! The same employee accused of such, stayed an hour late last night, and took his own vehicle to pick up a stranded biker. I have a hard time believing he treated other customers any different?

Mandy Jordan
On Site Manager
Meredith H-D Shop of Conway


I'm not sure what the other side of the story could be.  You went to their dealership with your problem and were blown off.  You went to another HD Dealership with the exact same problem and they took care of you.   Shrug
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« Reply #19 on: August 08, 2008, 11:29:14 am »

Even if I had spoken to the manager, that would not have changed anything.  After being glared at and blown-off in their service department, crying to their manager is unlikely to have had good results and there is no way on earth I would have turned the bike over to them at that point, no matter how nice or apologetic the manager was.  I have had my Buell practically sabotaged in places like this before...

They seemed like the would have been very happy to help anybody on a Softail or an UltraGlide or a Custom.  If you have an eye patch, a chain on your wallet, or think that front brakes are dangerous - I'm sure you will fit right in and I'm sure they would run and get you with their truck when you are stranded - hell - they probably do it 4 or 5 times a week for their really good customers.  Lol


The fact that I just spent a large sum of money on a HONDA and not an XB12XT should be all I have to say about it.  Wink
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