Bikes Against Bullies – stand up to bullying

Bikes Against Bullies – stand up to bullying

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Check out this great group. Bio from their site:

Bikers Against Bullies UK is a group set up for bikers, but not limited to them. Anyone can get involved! The aim is to create awareness surrounding bullying and offer support to victims and their families. Our children deserve to be safe, and to be empowered and to live their lives without fear.

If you or your child is a victim of bullying and you would like our support, please get in touch.

 

Harley No Longer King : Company in trouble – Speed and Engines

Once upon a time Harley Davidson use to be the mega force in the motorcycle industry. It was always at the top of the list for any respecting biker to want to own. To be in most motorcycle clubs one had to have a Harley. A biker without a Harley wasn’t considered to be a biker but just some wannabee. All that has now changed. The once mighty symbol of freedom and image has started to crumble. The company that used to be the king of the road is just a shadow of itself. The company has no one to blame but itself for its fall from grace.

Harley got to be where it was from those hard working blue collar workers, workers that went to work every day and busted ass just to be able to ride and raise hell on the weekends. Since the early 90s when the lifestyle started to change and different people usually not apart of Harley’s core customers came flocking to the lifestyle,Harley took advantage of this new influx and started to raise prices. This was a serious mistake on Harleys part.Harley started to price out it’s core customer base and relied on a customer base that wouldn’t stick by the company for long.

In the early 2000’s shows like Biker Build Off, Orange County Choppers kept Harley ridinghigh. Shows like those brought customers who never considered riding before into the mix. The Chopper craze was in full swing and if you couldn’t afford one of those a Harley was the next best thing. Harley started it’s decline at this point I believe. Harley started to focus not only on raising prices even more, they started pushing clothing and accessories as a bigger part of the company instead of staying focused on a better bike.

In 2006 most of the reality shows started to go off air and the recession was starting to loom.  Those customers Harley relied upon started to get out of the lifestyle. Started selling off those bikes. The used market became saturated with all kinds of makes and models. That saturation continues till today. What happens when the used market becomes saturated with bikes? No one really wants to spend the 25,000 to get a brand new bagger. Shit no one wants to spend 10,000 on a sportster. When people don’t buy then production starts to be cut and people at the company get laid off.

Harley was lucky in it’s marketing. It had a loyal base from the Vietnam era that pushed an idea. If you were not riding a Harley then you were not a REAL bbiker. Some of that thinking still exists today but not like it use to be. Problem with that thinking is people started saying “If your on two wheels, who gives a shit what your riding”. I agree fully with that saying by the way. I got to that point when Harley started closing up factories here in the states and gave work to Mexico and India. When they started shipping production overseas the product suffered. Just look at all the recalls that have started just last year. Quality might as well be made if China.

Since the Old Scooter tramps are now moving onto other things in life a new generation has started to come up. That new generation has gravitated towards Honda, Yamaha, Suzuki, Indian and Victory. Why? Well it comes down too those companies make a better product then Harley. Most have a better design and most important are way more reliable. No one likes being on the side of the road on a long haul because the ride they are on has design flaws.

I sometimes found it funny when old timers would say “Yea they might make Hondas in Ohio but the money still goes to Japan”. I would just shake my head and tell them “Well at least some of that money is going into a hardworking blue collar American who is taking pride building that bike”. Yea that usually shut them up lol. It was even funnier when that same old timer called me a couple weeks later asking for a tow because he and his Harley were on the side of the road. “You were saying about Harley again?”

Don’t think I’m here picking on Harley. I own a 03 Soft tail. I also own a Midnight Star. I usually ride the soft tail around town and the Star on long hauls. My personally preference is the Star rides a lot smoother then the Soft tail and my old ass needs all the comfort I can get.

What does this mean for Harley when companies like Honda,Yamaha, Victory start putting out better bikes then them? Simple the market share becomes smaller and smaller for Harley. Harley is starting to literally fall apart according to their financials. The only bright spot for Harley has been its 550 and 750 models that mainly sell overseas. While Harley was raising prices and putting out some bad bikes over these past couple years the competition came in and swooped up that blue collar base that Harley turned it`s back on.

Do I think Harley will ever get back to it’s original core customers? If they don’t I think they will be in the same spot they were in the 70’s. They will be facing bankruptcy and this time won’t have a loyal base to bail them out. Harley miscalculated who would stick by them in the 90s and 00s. They also miscalculated that everyone in the lifestyle just needed to have that Harley to live up to the image. The new Image isn’t about owing a Harley to be a true Biker. The new image is “Just ride” and who gives a crap what you are riding.

 

Source: Harley No Longer King : Company in trouble – Speed and Engines

Breaking Bands 2016 – A Roaring Success

Breaking Bands 2016 – A Roaring Success

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Fri 27th May 2016. 10.00am.
Once again I packed my trusty steed and headed off to the unknown, (as in Bands) music festival that was Breaking Bands 2016.

Well what can I say apart from WOW! I have been to a number of live gigs and bike rallies before and whilst this wasn’t a bike rally, it kinda felt like it in some respects. The camaraderie of the bands, the happy faces, intimate location making it feel like one big rock family, you couldnt get a better experience if you tried. It really did feel like it had been running for years and not just the 12 months or so and only the 2nd ever festival that the TBFM team had put on.

Talking of TBFM, what an amazing team of people. I have never been made to feel so welcome at any event before and got to camp with some of the DJs and what a blast that was, fantastic guys and brilliant vibes all weekend.

The highlight for me was seeing a few of the bands which I had only really heard a few tracks on Spoitfy, like Trucker Diablo, Evil Masquerade and the ubixuitous Reign of Fury. But to my absolute surprise many of the other bands got my attention as well, like Wretched Toad, Skarthia, Cadence Noir, Crash in Clouds, Let for Red and Black Star Bullet to name a few.

Man what a line-up, can’t wait for next year, as that’s a hard act to follow and hopefully I will get to see some of these guys back again. get your tickets now, as they ain’t gonna last long for next years gig : http://breakingbandsfestival.com

All in all you guys really do Rock \m/.

Breaking Bands Festival this weekend…

Breaking Bands Festival this weekend…

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For those rock and metal aficionados, one of the understated festivals of the year is just about upon us. TBFM radio are putting on one hell of a show – the Breaking Bands Festival 2016.
Sorry but you can’t get in now as they are all sold out and have been for a while, demand was that high, and next years looks no different so get in early.

With over 30 up and coming bands and an acoustic stage, as well as great food, cheap beer on tap and really great people organising the event, this is THE rock festival to be at.

Will be posting about the gigs a little later, so in the meantime tune into TBFM radio to catch all the news and music from the festival.

Rock on…

 

 

NABD 25th Annual Rally

NABD 25th Annual Rally

So I pack up all my gear and head off to the NABD rally up near Macclesfield on the friday morning. My stomach was feeling a little bubbly, but thought nothing of it. I had volunteered to help out with Marshalling duties during the weekend for the NABD guys. With a big after party on the Sunday evening for all the Marshalls.

Friday evening i did my shift on the gate and didn’t feel too bad… then Saturday morning the flood gates opened and never stopped and still haven’t really as i type this now.
I spent the rest of the weekend either in my tent curled up in pain or in a porta loo contributing to the eco system in a large way.

The rally itself from what i could see, hear, gather was awesome. Lots of great music, comedy acts, loads of trade stalls, really friendly people and pretty good food vans that i could see (although I didn’t eat anything all weekend). The vibe was excellent with good security and overall brilliant weather, all in all one great rally.

Well done to all the hard working NABD ladies and gents, a few who i met and were great people. Just a pity I didn’t get chance to get to know them better and enjoy the event to its full potential.
Fear not i shall be back next year with a vengeance… watch this space.