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Peaches is gone

09/06/2017

My 96 Evo Harley is going to the scrapyard tomorrow. Bitch is cursed. I’ve had two green Electraglides, and both have tried to kill me. My actual death in 1979 was on a green 72 H-D Electraglide. Luckily, they didn’t want me up-stairs yet, so they sent me back. I’ve already told you about this damn near version from July 29th, on a green Road King. FLH, FLHRi. The RK isn’t called the Electraglide anymore, but it is pretty much exactly the same creature. M’kay, I got to thinking about how many times Peaches has tried to kill me. This one was closest, but there were a couple of others. “The Harley Death Wobble” is not restricted by any means to H-D alone. It is simply a steering head instability that exists in EVERY brand of motorcycle. You see it in the rice grinder race bikes. You see it in EVERY touring model of ANY brand. It is basically an instability caused by load distribution, minimal tire patch contact at ludicrous speeds, on and on.

You push to a point where said imbalance overcomes the basic stability of the machine. You go through a curve pushing just a bit harder than you should, and there you are.

So, here’s an older video, everybody on pretty much anything other than a Harley, explaining just what it is and how it happens:

I am a biker. It is in my blood, I cannot live completely without a motorcycle. If that is how I die, so be it. That is how I am supposed to die. I will ride until I no longer can, and then it won’t matter if I continue to live. Death comes in many forms, and for many reasons. I will ride until I die, when I come to the point I can no longer ride, I will die.

I’m just going to maybe slow down a bit these days to come, so I can ride longer.

4 Comments
  1. Dr. Jeff permalink
    09/07/2017 01:42

    Hiya.

    I’ve seen wobble twice – both times when I had both hands on the handlebars. Both times I’d backed off the throttle and was slowing down.

    It set in just a little under 45 MPH and disappeared a little over 40 MPH. The speed window was only about 2 MPH, above and below perfectly stable. I tried duplicating it a few times – nothing. That was twice, about a year apart, in about 10 years and 45,000 miles of mostly city riding.

    fwiw Bike is a 2004 Yamaha V-Star 1100 (looks like a Harley Soft Tail until you spot the shaft drive). I don’t remember the brand of tires I had at the time, but I know it hasn’t happened since I put Metzler tires on. The Metzlers feel like a silk covered rail.

    You sure it was upstairs who didn’t want you? You remember the line that ends: “…and Hell is afraid I’ll take over.” ; )

  2. Dr. Jeff permalink
    09/07/2017 01:45

    Speaking of July 29th near miss – how’s the healing doing?

  3. 09/07/2017 08:21

    Getting better every day. Almost back to full speed, if a tiny bit touchy. Thanks for asking!

  4. 09/07/2017 08:22

    LOL!!! I remember it was nice. I don’t remember any of that tea with Grandma crap, I just know it wasn’t “there”.

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