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Friday, September 19, 2014

Custom Royal Enfield Military gets tougher look

Once a Royal Enfield Military model, this custom keeps getting tougher.
Time for another look at a custom Royal Enfield first featured here a year ago.

Dan Raleigh of Minnesota continues to shape his one-time 2007 Royal Enfield Military to his own taste.

"You did a feature on my bike a while back and I thought you might to see what I've done to the Enfield lately. Me and my buddy fitted up a Sportster tank to my '07 Military. Along with the other changes over the years, I think this new tank really adds to the slim-line look that the bike is shaping into," Dan wrote.

Sportster tank changes the lines.
"I'm really pleased with the look of the tank. It's from Cleveland Motorwerks. Petcock and gas line are from Lowbrow customs. I wanted to keep the look of the slightly rusted tank, so I clear coated the tank with clear plastic dip."

What to do with the battery is always a consideration on customs, it seems. I commented that I liked the military-look bag Dan has on the left side of his motorcycle.

Somehow, this motorcycle just says "Vroommmm!" to me.
"I think I mentioned the battery cover before, but it's just an old canvas style shoulder bag that I cut up and stitched to fit around the battery," Dan replied.

"I'd like to get a new gel battery and relocate it somewhere out of the way. Always something to do..."

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Blind rider sets a record at Bonneville Salt Flats

Dan Parker's blindness didn't prevent a record run at Bonneville. 
The Royal Enfield Continental GT set a record at the Bonneville Salt Flats in August, overcoming a hectic last-minute blitz of electronic/mechanical bugs and inclement weather.

The hustle didn't stop Team Royal Enfield member Kevin Mahoney, president of Classic Motorworks, from checking out the other racers. He posted a neat Facebook gallery of photos of unusual Bonneville race bikes.

In one case, though, his attention was attracted by the rider, not the bike.

Dan Parker, who was blinded in a drag-racing accident in 2012, rode a three-wheeled motorcycle he constructed himself, to a world record in the 51-85cc two-stroke cycle-car class.

Dan Parker, with his racer, on the salt at Bonneville.
Parker walks with the white cane, visible in the photos, but he rode with the aid of a GPS system that gave him audible cues in order to help him maintain a straight course. The GPS system was designed and built by engineer Patrick Johnson.

"I was quite puzzled when I saw that guy in line for tech. He did pretty well all things considered. Had some (guts)," Kevin wrote.

According to a press release from The National Federation of the Blind, one of his sponsors, Parker completed a two-way run, reaching an officially recorded top speed of 64.8 mph on one pass and an average top speed of 62.05 over both passes, thereby setting a class world record, pending ratification.

A look inside the machine. (All photos by Rick Head)
Rick Head, of Exile Turbo Systems, was at Bonneville with Parker, and provided the photos you see here.

Parker wore leathers with the logos of the National Federation of the Blind and its Blind Driver Challenge. That's a program that encourages innovative non-visual solutions that empower the blind — even to drive.

“Last year I was thrilled to witness Dan Parker’s run on the Bonneville Salt Flats, the first ever by a blind person," Mark Riccobono, president of the National Federation of the Blind, said in the press release.

"This year, Dan has not only proven once again that blindness is no barrier to living the life you want, but has set a world speed record in the process."

Friday, September 12, 2014

Aftermarket exhaust for Royal Enfield Continental GT

New  muffler looks great and sounds great on the Royal Enfield Continental GT.
Clever "Before" and "After" videos show what an aftermarket exhaust can do for the look and sound of Royal Enfield's new Continental GT.

Carpy's Cafe Racers in Anaheim, Calif. posted the two videos to show off its new stainless steel exhaust system for the Continental GT.

Of course the small print specifies that this system is "not for use on public roads." Ahem. So, remember, that, OK? I know. It's so easy to forget!

Especially when you click on these two videos. The difference is dramatic.
Carpy is a Southern California customizer who loves cafe racers but, for the sake of price and parts availability, works with modern "metric" motorcycles rather than costly vintage British bikes. Not that he doesn't love the old Brits:

"But my bread and butter has been the good old CB750 Honda," he writes. "I know to some purist it’s not their cup of tea, and I totally understand this, but what I do with the stock bike is give it a slight British styling that Honda should of brought out back in the day.

"We enjoy designing many parts and now I am getting into the Brit stuff once more and the Royal Enfield is a fun and affordable bike to have these days."

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