Cruisers Rule!

Discussion in 'Bay Area Bikers' started by Andy Burnett, Oct 5, 2003.

  1. Andy Burnett

    Andy Burnett Guest

    I've never exactly been smitten by cruisers myself. My neighbor across
    the street has a Fat Boy and though we technically have motorcycles in
    common, we've never talked much about them since our interests lie in
    different veins.

    This fellow has lived across the street from me for six years or so.
    One of his nephews recently got an R6 and came over to show it off. I
    went over to chat and kick tires and Rick, my neighbor, chuckled, "He
    never comes over here when the Harley's are out!"

    I shrugged and said, "I wouldn't know what to talk about." He took it
    how I meant it, having a laugh. He then told me about a bike he had on
    order. It's called a 145 Tribute. I'd never heard of it before, but
    it's one of a very limited edition of pretty outrageous cruisers from
    Arlen Ness.

    He took delivery about three weeks ago and I've got to say, it's a
    stunning piece of machinery. It has very graceful lines, a minimalist
    look and one hell of a motor. The "145" in the bike's name comes from
    the fact that it's a 145 cubic inch motor. The engine produces about
    185 Hp and 186 foot pounds of torque. Final drive is a belt -- two of
    'em -- one on each side.

    Being a radical cruiser, it has a little skinny front tire and the front
    brakes are correspondingly meager. The bike has a very long wheelbase
    and a gigantic 220 rear tire. As with many customs, most of the braking
    power comes from the rear. Having a belt on each side creates the
    obvious problem of where to put the rear brake. Ness combined each rear
    belt sprocket with a disk mounted inside the sprocket and designed to be
    gripped from the inside rather than the outside. Ultimately the rear
    brakes are plenty powerful, having (I think) four pot calipers on both
    sides.

    Rick generously let me take it for a short spin this evening. Coming
    from a sportbike background, he steering was strange to me at first, but
    you get used to it quickly. I found a straight piece of road and opened
    the throttle some. The power and torque were unbelievable.
    Acceleration on this thing is traction-limited; even with the 220 rear
    tire, this monster will spin the rear going straight in 4th gear! You
    could tow a ski boat with this bike. Maybe three of them.

    The clutch pull is about twice as hard as anything else I've ridden and
    the idle is extremely rough. It's loud as sin, having something like
    60mm diameter straight pipes that are only about 2.5 feet long. Despite
    all this and the available power, the bike is surprisingly agreeable to
    ride around town. And once you're on open road, the riding position is
    downright nice.

    I'm not ready to plunk down $65K for a custom cruiser myself, but I can
    definitely appreciate what made Rick do it. There's nothing sensible
    about it, but as an outlandish toy, the thing is an absolute hoot. Here
    is a link to see what the Arlen Ness version of the 145 Tribute looks
    like:

    http://www.supercars.net/garages/RLQ/21v2.html

    At least Rick and I have something to talk about now, when it comes to
    motorcycles.

    ab
     
    Andy Burnett, Oct 5, 2003
    #1
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  2. snip
    I have a friend with an Arlen Ness museum piece. He tried to ride it for
    awhile, but after the gas tank fell off, the oil pump came loose twice,
    the front wheel wobbles from side to side like a drunken sailor because
    the washers they use for spacers keep shearing off, and he realized the
    rear tire is rubbing the frame, he decided it was more fun to just look at
    it in his garage. He occasionally uses it to motor from his house to his
    favorite bar about 5 miles away. Unfortunately, he also uses it to motor
    home from his favorite bar.

    It is incredibly amazing to look at, though.

    He only paid about $35K for it; I hope for your neighbor's sake, that for
    the additional $30K they figured out now to actually build a bike that can
    be ridden.
     
    Charles Stembridge, Oct 5, 2003
    #2
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  3. Andy Burnett

    Andy Burnett Guest

    (Charles Stembridge) wrote in
    It looks like they have. When I rode it, I was pleased to see the
    suspension worked well and overall the bike felt tight.

    Also, I mis-wrote earlier: This particular bike is a Cory Ness (Arlen's
    son) design.

    ab
     
    Andy Burnett, Oct 5, 2003
    #3
  4. It's the well set up writing/computer desk test. Upright to slightly
    leaned forward, legs mostly underneeth you to slightly forward. AKA
    the seating position for most ST bikes.
     
    Nicholas C. Weaver, Oct 5, 2003
    #4
  5. Andy Burnett

    barbz Guest

    Yow! Hep me, Jeebus!
    barbz
     
    barbz, Oct 6, 2003
    #5
  6. I don't know Andy... what I find talking with the cruiser crowd is that
    there no cure for disbelief...

    Larry L
    94 RC45 #2
    Have a wheelie NICE day...
    Lean & Mean it... the extended warranty in every corner of your life...
    If it wasn't for us the fast lane would rust...
    V4'S are music to the seat of my pants...
    1952 De Havilland Chipmunk...
    Yank and bank your brains loose...
    http://members.ebay.com/aboutme/-xlax-/
     
    Larry xlax Lovisone, Oct 6, 2003
    #6
  7. Andy Burnett

    James Clark Guest


    When is he taking delivery of the other four 145s?

    (They were suppose to be sold in sets of 5.)
     
    James Clark, Oct 6, 2003
    #7
  8. Andy Burnett

    Andy Burnett Guest

    Not sure how this all came about, but I do know a friend of his purchased
    one of the others.

    ab
     
    Andy Burnett, Oct 6, 2003
    #8
  9. Andy Burnett

    James Clark Guest


    Just kidding.

    Initially, each of the 5 builders was to produce 9 bikes. The total of
    45 signifying S&S's 45th anniversary. You're suppose to collect them
    all, just like Pokemon.
     
    James Clark, Oct 7, 2003
    #9
  10. Andy Burnett

    Peer Landa Guest

    I guess most of you who know Andy Burnett will now think he has fallen on
    his head (while chasing his clumsy Golden Retriever, or something)... but
    I'm quite certain that this post must have been from an impersonator,
    because Andy seemed sort of okay last I spoke with him.

    Andy, please go back racing AFM and lead the Doc's group #2 -- we miss
    you.

    -- peer
     
    Peer Landa, Oct 7, 2003
    #10
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