Archive for May, 2011

Memorial Day bonding with da’ Bandit on goat!

After spending yesterday doing household chores that I have ignored for months, I decided this morning with coffee that I needed to pay attention to my new Bandit with more conviction than I had cleaning the mold out of the shower. So after a second cuppa joe and synapses jazzed, I donned my riding gear and rolled the bike out of the garage for a run through the twisties, something which I have done very little of with this bike.

It’s funny how after a while we get ready for a ride on auto-pilot. I had my ipod, iphone, camera in the tank bag before thinking anything about it. I had my purse–a girl’s gotta have her purse–and the liner to my jacket, just in case it was colder in the higher elevations, and a second set of unvented gloves. I gave the bike a quick once over and was off, still feeling a little gun shy with this big ol’ boy, like my first fumble so many years ago in the back seat of a convertible. This was the day, the day to see if I was Woman enough for this beast.

Now, the one thing that I did forget ended up being the one thing I desperately needed, the GPS. What ever was I thinking. I did discover that I not only use it for routing and finding myself, but, most importantly, seeing the road ahead. I have truly come to rely on this magical box to show me the twists and turns ahead. I am then allowed to travel more briskly and with less surprise unless someone is stopped in a blind/off-camber corner writing down a phone number… more about that later.

So, I was BLIND without my GPS in more ways than one, but persevere I did, all that with only one phone call to Gary, my navigational home system. And damn if it doesn’t work well!!

But all that’s later, right now, I was about gas and getting the heck outta Sacramento, post haste. I decided to try and find Pardee Dam, which always seems to elude me even with my GPS. I didn’t exactly get lost, but it was a creative route to say the least. The dam lookout was blowing like crazy, but I stopped for a photo and to chat with an old timer whose most invested query was “how fast does that thing go?”, to which I replied, “faster than I want”. I’m sure he was an undercover cop.

The overlook

The Dam from the overlook


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Bikes and Babes–What constitutes the quintessential female rider?


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By breaking the stereotype of the biker babe with our new female rider demographic, I believe we are changing the face of the female motorcycle community. We are succeeding in re-branding exactly how female riders are now perceived. But it comes with a new challenge: who is the new moto-female and how can we define her? Well, I believe all biker babe stereotypes are now moot as the female motorcycling population has grown by boundless numbers and those numbers include all ages, races, sizes, and types of desired motorcycles. There are women riding all different format machines, now, and we no longer fit into a movie stereotype of women gone mad. Now, with that in mind, how exactly do we define ourselves?

Many say that they don’t want to be considered significantly different from male riders, but we are. We are female and in that we should celebrate our women-hood in everything we do. My celebration is riding a motorcycle and as I tour across the country I am finding more and more women riders enjoying the same countryside and roadways as their male counterparts. I can’t tell you what a delight it is for me to ride across another solo female rider, as we are a seemingly rare breed. As the sport grows, so does the population of solo female riders and it’s always a pleasure not only to see one, but to get the chance to sit and chat. I welcome the possibilities of what lays ahead for the industry as more and more women take up all areas of the sport. There are those that ride dirt, motocross, adventure riding, stunting, streets, and touring. Many of those women cross over into multiple variations of the sport. I find it refreshing that we are no longer limited to donning the track as umbrella girls, but now as serious contenders in many of the races. We are found in all areas of motorcycling and I believe it’s finally time to put a face to us.

So… I invite all of you reading this post that are riders or partakers in any aspect of the sport to send me a photo riding your motorcycle or standing with your motorcycle or wrenching a motorcycle or whatever! For all that do, I will post a follow up to this article with your photograph and any details you include. You can add your riding philosophy, your thoughts or simply a screen or real name. For each woman that sends me a jpg, I’ll enter you into a drawing to win a demenshea.com t-shirt. You may send your entries to donna@demenshea.com and I will welcome photos until July 1, at which time, I’ll do the drawing get a winner for the shirt and start compiling a photo journal. In a July article, I will post every photo I receive, so let’s put a face to what constitutes the quintessential female rider!

I hope you find this as interesting as I do and if so, please send me your photos and thoughts! Let’s show the world the new female face of motorcycling!

Please be aware, that if you send me your photo, you are giving me permission to post it to demenshea.com. THANKS!



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Vincent Black Lightening…posted earlier, but good enough to post again for those that missed it.

I had only seen one ever…and then I heard this and was even more intrigued.

Richard Thompson–Vincent Black Lightening 1952

I had to find more, know more. Where did these beautiful sexy machines rise from. Who was responsible for this wondrous exciting piece of motorcycle history. I was off on a research journey.

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Trial and Error…

The culprit

You can see from this side shot, that the clearance between the rack and where the seat snaps in is small.

Well, the seller of the Corbin Holeshot seat was kind enough to use the “motorcycle code of trust” and allow me to bring the seat home and try it on my bike… and guess what, it didn’t fit! My bike has a bracket for my Givi hard bags which didn’t allow the seat to seat, so to speak. Anyway, after playing with it several ways, the conclusion was met that it just won’t fit. My next thought will be to visit a seat man and see about having the Bandit seat cut down a bit and maybe adding some tempor foam to actual seat position. I found an excellent “how to” on the web, but am a bit leery to put an electric carving knife to my seat, not knowing my skilz at this process, but I do know what needs to be done to make the seat better for my arse! I’ll consider this ploy as I search for someone with the proper knowledge to do it right.

Now for a quick trip back to Stockton to return the seat. *sigh*

Tomorrow…a new seat for my Bandit! The farkling for fit begins…

I am in the process of trying to tweak my 07 Bandit to fit me better. So, to begin I amazingly found a new Corbin Holeshot seat on Craigslist and tomorrow I am going to go and pick it up. I have read a ton on these seats which will lower me by one inch, which should make a huge difference on how I place my feet on the ground. I am really excited about this, and getting it on the bike so that I may try it out! I figure worst case scenario will be if it doesn’t suit me, I will have to resell it for what I paid for it. The deal was awesome so I know that won’t be difficult to accomplish.

Here is the seat.

I also listed my old Bandito on Craigslist today. OK…everyone in unison…AWWWWWWW.