Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Still Ice on the Lake Outside my Window

Since spring isn't really here and I've got winter pictures.........

The Suomi is our favorite breakfast restaurant.  We eat breakfast there everyday.  They have the best Pannukakku in town.  This sign is directly above the entrance door, so you need to take care not to slam the door.

 As mentioned, they are having a light snow year in the Keweenaw, but there are still places where it piles up. 

These little roof peaks over doors are there to divert both snow and icicles.  Note the height of the snow relative to the basketball pole.

Some cars don't get driven in winter.  The snow piles up for a while, then melts and compresses, then piles up again.

Enjoy spring.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Purr of a Cat

Sometimes YouTube can be as dangerous as Craig's List.  I often scan available bikes on Ebay, just out of curiousity.  This time, I found an 800 Tiger, which is a bike I have imagined would be a good ride for me.  That got me to thinking about how it might sound, so I naturally Googled Tiger 800 sound and came up with this video.

Aftermarket LeoVince exhaust, plus the triple purrrr sure sounds nice to me.  I even like the crackle of the backfire on overrun.  It sounded so good to me that I ran around the internet trying to find really good sounding motorcycles to keep me away from the Tiger.  Ducati has nice sound tracks for their bikes, but they didn't quite do it for me.  V-twins can sound very nice, a bass thump in the tone.  Inline 4's have a nice, high frequency scream.  Ian Drysdale's V8 has a nasty combination of the V-twin and the inline 4.

Still, I like the purr and crack of this Tiger.  So here is the thought.  To save me from getting snared by the cat, send me internet accessible video or sound clips that might persuade me to stop thinking 3 cylinder.  I will add them to post for all to share.

Doug was good enough to share his favorite, an Aprilia 1000 V-2.  He couldn't find a good sound video of the Aprilia, but the Can-Am Spyder uses the same engine, so he offers this video as a sound concept.

Hey Doug, I like it, I get it.  It is a very different sound, more like a stacatto V-8 sound, where the Triumph is a higher pitch tone and more fluid.  Lots to like in each.

I did a little digging and found this video of a Caponord 1200 using what I think is a bigger version of the V-2.  The first seconds after the ad are a pass by shot.  Skip to 1:10 on the video for the on-board video.  So Doug,  is this what you had in mind?

This is a nice looking bike to me.  Much prettier face than the Multistrada.  It has nice electronic controls and I'll be it costs a pretty penny too.

Any other good suggestions?

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

3 Across Seating for Transportation

First there was the Matra Bagheera and it's cousin the Talbot Murena.  Then there was the McLaren F1.  Now this inventive MPV.  It brings a whole new meaning to balanced handling.

Corena sent this out by email.  Her audience/sources expalins the description in both english and german.

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Stich Eye View

I scanned this from the inside cover of the most recent Aerostich catalog.  Naturally, its an advertisement for how good they think their gear works.  But it is based on some concept about what is feasible weather for riding a motorcycle.  It also emphasizes that hot weather on a bike can be a real pain, especially if you want to wear protection on your body.

Personally, I'm not up for as much cold weather riding as they seem to sign up for.  Even accepting a little cold weather fanaticism (Aerostich is in Duluth, after all) on their part, I was very surprised to see them identify Phoenix as the place with the fewest riding days per year.

It does bring up the question, how cold are you willing to ride, especially a full day ride?  And how hot is too hot for you on that same full day? 

For me, the answer is somewhere around 40 deg F on the low side and somewhere in the mid 90s on the high side.  I have ridden above 95, even over 100, but I didn't like it and it just wasn't fun.  I have also ridden on days that started in the 30's, but it was never fun, just getting home because there wasn't much choice.

I'm sure others have a wider range.  I'll put mine down to a naked bike with me out in the wind.  That, and not being as macho as I once was.

Finally, I thought it was interesting that San Francisco has 365 days, one day more riding than San Diego, 4 days more than LA.  I guess rain and fog don't count at all.  That seems to be confirmed by Seattle having 356 days.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Spring Time is Near

Yes, spring time is just around the corner and it always makes me a little sad.  I know, as a biker, I should chomping at the bit to get the bike out of the garage and hit the road.  But somehow, every spring, when the snow starts to melt, I get nostalgic for winter.  That's when I seem to go hunting for pretty pictures of snow.

Well, at least we had a winter this year.  I had the chance to play with my new camera up north, so I've got a few winter shots to keep the mud away.  And yes, I know that I'm crazy.

I you look on your Google map at the finger of land sticking up into Lake Superior, then zoom in on the north coast up towards the tip, you will find Eagle Harbor.  Eagle Harbor is cute little village that is dominated by snowmobile traffic in winter.  This shot is from a nice little inn where they have excellent food.

Out on the point that forms the harbor, there is a lighthouse and views of Lake Superior.

Overall, it has been a light year for snowfall in Michigan's Keweenaw Penninsula.  Often, there is a lot more snow piled up.  This shot of downtown Calumet feels surprisingly big city for such a small town.