Motorcycles. What a…rather unique topic to write about. It’s a slightly random post today, bringing up two-wheeled motorized vehicles out of the countless others. In reality, I couldn’t come up with anything else. But, I’ve been thinking about this. I myself don’t know much about them. At most, the only thing I could come up with from what I know about them is that they have two wheels and an engine.
I guess this is similar to my Whiskey post, where I randomly wrote on a topic and gave some facts. It’s not bad to randomly talk about something informational every once in a while. Plus, this will be another learning experience for me as well.
Let’s first start with what defines a motorcycle. A two-wheeled vehicle that is powered by a motor and doesn’t have pedals. Given that, we have a basic image in our heads, like the one down below.
But, this is only one of the different types of motorcycles that exist. They look similar, yet each one has a specific purpose and style as to where or how it is ridden. Out of the many different types of motorcycles, I’m choosing to write about 4 types. Standard, Cruiser, Bagger, and Touring. Also, I’m going to be going off of Indian Motorcycles and their bikes for this post.
I also want to explain what cc means. When I write something like 125 cc, I’m talking about 125 cubic centimeters. The cc is used to measure the displacement of a motorcycle engine. A motorcycle’s displacement is another way to measure the volume of its cylinders (hence cubic), or more simply, measures the amount of space the engine’s pistons sweep within one stroke.
More displacement can mean a more powerful engine, but not necessarily more speed. For example, a standard bike can go faster than a bagger, despite the bagger having more cc, because the standard bike is smaller and weighs less.
Fairing is an external metal or plastic structure added to increase streamlining and reduce drag, especially on a high-performance car, motorcycle, boat, or aircraft.
The oldest motorcycle style that manufactures have been producing, and a common favorite because of it’s simple design and suiting for all purposes. It has an upright seating position with the handlebar at waist height that offers a balanced riding position.
It has variations from 125 cc up to 1,000cc and can be fit with luggage, a tank bag, or a different seat.
Designed for cruising, the Cruiser has a lower seat height for relaxed riding position and easy control. The engine sizes vary from a small displacement to 1,000 cc or more. ( Usually from 125 to 1,000cc)
Power cruisers have greater performance than usual, more horsepower, stronger brakes, and better suspension. Thye have higher levels of power, and often come with upgraded brakes and suspensions, better ground clearance, and premium surface finishes.
Baggers are more comfortable bikes that can be taken on the open road. They can dominate miles with high-displacement engines . They have saddlebags which offer plenty of storage for riding gear, cargo, or anything needed to hit the road. Baggers have a customizable selection of frame, fairings, and windshields which can keep you from being knocked around by the wind.
Touring motorcycles are perfect for long-distance rides as it has amenities and comfort for both the rider and passenger. They commonly have large displacement fairings and windshields that offer a high degree of weather and wind protection, large-capacity fuel tanks for long ranges, engines with a great deal of low-end horsepower, and a more relaxed upright seating position.
It’s typically larger than most other motorcycles, and has typically large engine sizes to be able to keep up highway speeds, and haul a large amount of extra gear+ clothes. Engine sizes can range from 1,000 to 1,800 cc.
Why do people ride motorcycles?
My guess would be the thrill. I’ve gotten the chance to ride with my dad on his motorcycle a few times, and it’s always been exciting? Why? Because of the thrill. The thrill of going at an incredible speed with nothing but the wind stopping you. It’s something that gives freedom. No one can stop you at that moment from going wherever you want. Nothing holds you back, and allows you to feel that sense of flying because of it’s open build. Although having to sit pressed against someone’s back with a firm non-negotiable grip around their waist isn’t the same, it gives a similar feeling.
I would also say because of what it sounds like. You can’t really hear much when riding due to the wind, but it’s helpful. I don’t remember what it sounds like, but it’s a bit blurred when you ride. You don’t hear a lot of sounds other than the occasional cars and wind whipping past you, and that’s calming as well. It blocks out the sound that can distract you, and lets you hear how fast you’re going instead. You don’t get that type of power and speed with cars or other vehicles, making it much more exciting with motorcycles. That sound also builds the thrill. The faster you go, the more blurred it sounds, and more thrill you get.
It can also be there to burn stress. When you ride, you feel calm. It sort of reboots your system and re-energizes you. It allows you to forget what’s on your mind and just enjoy the feeling of being free, and by yourself.
I also want to include friendship. My dad always shares stories about his rides whenever he gets home, and it always sounds warm when he shares a memory with his friends along the way. Going on a solo trip is great, but it’s better with friends. On that trip, they’ve all put down hectic schedules and work to do one thing you all love, and that’s riding. Either for short trips to close states, or long road trips across the country, they’ll be there. You create a special, a new specific bond with your friends when you ride, and that’s another reason why people do it.
Difference between a biker group and biker gang:
When I was younger, I asked this question to my dad. Whenever I thought of a biker, I was always thinking of some biker gang or a person who was bad and rode on a bike while harming people. So when my dad got a bike, I got confused, and a bit worried. He later explained to me the difference.
A biker group, or motorcycle club, is a group of individuals whose primary interest and activities involve motorcycles. They all share the same passion and interest in motorcycles, and that’s why they form a club. Most clubs are either organized around a particular brand or make, or around a type of riding.
Biker gangs/ Outlaw motorcycle clubs however, do not usually adhere to the American Motorcyclist Association’s ( AMA) rules. Some members of outlaw motorcycle clubs participate in criminal activities and organized crime.
Why I want a bike:
Like I mentioned at the beginning, I have a dream motorcycle/bike in mind that I want to have when I’m older. How did it come to this, well….I don’t know. Honestly, I never imagined myself ever wanting a motorcycle in the future. I never liked them that much or thought they were great. But one day very recently I guess something clicked in my mind and now I want a motorcycle of my own.
What comes to mind when you think of a motorcyclist? Probably some person with a vest covered with patches standing next to a bike. Or maybe not. But anyway, usually these vests serve a greater purpose than as protection or a stylish overcoat. They can represent a treasure for some. My dad owns a vest himself, and on it he had many patches of different places he’s been. For example, the Three Twisted Sisters. It’s like a trophy. A piece of clothing that shows the different achievements and places you’ve been and have. Or it could just be a way to represent yourself. It doesn’t necessarily have to have patches of your achievements, but to show who you are. To show the world when you ride what it means to be a rider to you, and what you see of yourself.
The bond between a rider and their bike:
You know how ships have names? I’m not sure about big ships, but for small ships the captain or whoever owns it gives it a name. Ever wonder why? Because that’s their partner. It’s their most trusted friends on a journey. Same with bikes. Bikers name their bikes as well because that’s their only companion on the road. The bike is the one that is with them and the one that will take care of them on their ride. The vehicle is the one that’s helping you get there, and is the one that will protect you. You basically trust it to help you reach your destination safely. Giving it a name is like a form of respect. And that respect is the bond. If you treat it right, it’ll treat you right as well. Take care of it, and it’ll take care of you as well.
And so that’s all I have on motorcycles and bikers. I hope you all got to learn a little more about them like I did. After doing some research and writing this, I actually became more aware of what it meant to be a rider and understand why they like it more as well.I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving, and are well. Bye!