Blog Section: Chronicles

Motorcycle Navigation: Using a Digital Atlas Instead of Getting GPS’d Off

May 27, 2016 View Comments by

Prologue I was hiking with my family in a New Jersey state forest, viewing a static image of the park’s map using my Android smartphone. It was contained in a PDF file that we downloaded by scanning a QR code that was printed on the entrance’s billboard. For digital technologists like me, these are good […]

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Ruin’d: The Olympic Peninsula—Hunting for Abandoned Military Bunkers

May 26, 2016 View Comments by

More than 300 vertical feet separated us from the Strait of Juan de Fuca. We were standing on a small tuft of grass five feet from the backside of an abandoned World War II bunker set high above one of Washington’s most important waterways. We’d been riding all day, searching spur roads for the ruins […]

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MotoMojo: Spark Plugs—What They Say About Your Engine

May 24, 2016 View Comments by

Spark plugs can provide invaluable information on the mechanics of your bike. After plugs are run for a while, the tips show the overall condition of the engine, including pistons, rings, valve guides and seals, carburetion or fuel injection, ignition, and spark advance. You can also diagnose a variety of conditions, including detonation, pre-ignition, overheating, […]

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MotoMojo: Motorcycle Traction Controls

May 16, 2016 View Comments by

Traction control systems (TCS) are making their way into more and more mainstream motorcycles as the cost comes down and manufacturers’ experience with it increases. The benefits of TCS apply across the spectrum of models, from MotoGP racers and sportbikes to cruisers, sport-touring, and adventure and dirt bikes. If you’ve ever highsided coming out of […]

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The Joys of Camping: Camp Cooking

May 13, 2016 View Comments by

Given the choice, we’d rather ride than cook, but people do not live by miles ridden alone. Face it, you have to partake of nourishment at some point. Over the years we’ve learned to keep most of our endeavors simple, which includes camp cooking. On some tours, we’ve been known to distill “cooking” to a […]

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Camping and Fishing Along Arizona’s Mogollon Rim

May 12, 2016 View Comments by

“The readiness is all.” Okay, Hamlet was thinking of something very different when he said that, but the quote is apt for anyone heading off on a motorcycle camping and fishing excursion. After one last perusal to ensure all the essentials are in place, I stow my encased rod on top of my gear and […]

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Sidetracked: Pack Mentality—Gear

May 09, 2016 View Comments by

“I Was Only Going a Mile” We see it all the time. A pretty young lady riding across campus on a scooter, a bare-headed youth ripping through rush-hour traffic on a sportbike, T-shirt billowing over bare skin, or a middle-aged man, commuting to work on his cruiser. They are dressed for the gym, work, or […]

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The Joys of Camping : Basic Equipment Needs

May 07, 2016 View Comments by

With limited space available, motorcyclists who camp when touring must be very selective in choosing gear. Compact and lightweight are the concepts to keep in mind. In addition to a good quality tent (covered in May ’10, “Tents for Staying Warm, Dry, and Bug-Free”), there are four additional items you’ll need: a sleeping bag, sleeping […]

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Zen Motorcyclist: To Feel Normal Again

May 03, 2016 View Comments by

“I believe that half the trouble in the world comes from people asking ‘What have I achieved?’ rather than ‘What have I enjoyed?’” Walter Farley, author of The Black Stallion I’ve always loved movies with first-person narration, one character telling a story and his thoughts about the events. I’ve quoted The Shawshank Redemption before and […]

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The Joys of Camping

Apr 29, 2016 View Comments by

For starters, I suggest that, unless there’s no other option, pass on the RV parks. These places are designed for large vehicles primarily, not tent camping. As such, shade and grass are usually in short supply, and the distance to the restroom usually requires lacing up your hiking boots. When nature calls at 2 a.m., […]

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Lost Camera? How to Get Your Photos Back

Apr 28, 2016 View Comments by

With summer approaching and many motorcycle tours on the calendar, what should you do if you lose your camera on the road? What happens to the pictures and videos stored on the device? All of those precious moments captured and memories stored in a snapshot, lost to the world. With two billion smartphones world wide, […]

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So, Your Baby Wants to Ride

Apr 27, 2016 View Comments by

Your “baby” is your son or daughter of 16-plus years of age—who will of course, be your “baby” forever. You feel very protective of them, and that’s natural. Unfortunately, you know too much about riding, and all the bad drivers out there just waiting to ruin their day. In your mind’s eye they are still […]

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Interview with Bill Dutcher: The Americade Man

Apr 16, 2016 View Comments by

RR: You’ve had a very long and fruitful career in motorcycling that’s included racing, adventure touring, working for manufacturers, and as organizer of the eminently successful Americade event. At what age did that career begin? Bill: Maybe at birth. My career grew from my passion for motorcycles. I was a motor-head even as a child. I […]

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MotoMojo: ABS and Cornering ABS

Mar 23, 2016 View Comments by

When a bike has to slow down or change direction rapidly, it is most susceptible to loss of traction and rider control. Hence, the vast majority of motorcycle mishaps occur while braking and/or cornering. As a result, the greatest challenge for technical safety improvement for motorcycles is to mitigate this problem by using technology which […]

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Motorcycle Navigation: Did the Smartphone Kill the GPS Unit? Part 2

Mar 21, 2016 View Comments by

In the December issue I analyzed the gaps between smartphones and stand-alone GPS devices in the context of hardware. I arrived at the conclusion that the smartphone has better or equal hardware components, except perhaps for waterproofing, and a stand-alone GPS unit is still better for the specific task of motorcycle navigation. Hardware is just […]

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