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As of Thursday morning, I officially became an owner of a 2009 GW(AB).

The process initially began with asking for quotes from several NE dealers. They were asked for their best price since several dealers were being contacted. During this process a NH board member of one of the sites said he saved around $2,500 by going down South. After contacting three Southern dealers, AR, NC, & SC and the prices they sent back, all bets were off. There prices were much lower.

So, I chose Carolina Honda since a one-way, direct flight, was cheaper, and they were closer to the airport. From day one John Dorn was very helpfull with keeping me informed as I either used there stuff in stock or had to send them items I wanted added.

Friday morning I was picked up at the hotel and started off by spending time with Traci to complete the paperwork and hand over the final bank check. (Cash sale, no loans. Thank you USAR retirement checks.
) Mark showed me what was what on the bike (glad there was no test) and watched as I spent some time with Big Bird around their parking lot. Service honcho Tim and mechanic John also helped with my questions. To everyone at CH, Thank you. Oh yeah John, you can keep my center stand.

Around noon I was off for the drive North. After a short lunch break, have to start a trip at McD's, I hadn't gone 100 feet when I noticed the tire light symbol flashing on the dash. "Hi, this is Dan and the tire symbol is flashing. Sure, I'll hold." Hummmmm. "Hi Mark, sorry to bother you, but the tire symbol on the....., oh never mind it just went out. I'll let you know if it happens again. Thanks Mark." Throughout my whole trip that light came on each time I stopped. I believe the tires were checked in the service area and since I'm out in the cold weather, the pressure dropped, and the light wouldn't go out until the tires(tyres for you folks over there) heated up.

So at 1pm the trip officially commenced. Around 9:30PM I stopped in Richmond, VA after 402 miles. At 4AM Saturday morning, bike read 23 degrees, I drove 596 milles until I reached my home at 4:45PM. Our two schnoodles (Harley & Scooter) were outside for their post-supper visit when Big Bird showed up at the fence gate. Boy, did they go nuts!

Ramdom thoughts:

Only weather issue was the damn wind. During a call home the misses checked on line and winds at various locations I was going through were in the 20's with gusts higher. I'm 61 and 157lbs, so I'm gratefull for the core workouts my track coach has put us through recently. (Anyone else going to San Fran next August for the Senior Games Olympics?) Even cars passing were buffeting me. What a sail area on the GW. All the types of layers I used were fine except the knees got cool a couple of times. Other than the low 40's in SC, until sunset, the temps never got above 34 the whole trip. Mostly 20's.

Only saw one deer on 301 in MD and it had made it to the side of the road when I came up on it.

The modulating lights I had added were hooked up, I guess, to the bikes system that changes each sunrise and sunset. (Unbelievable!) So during the daylight hours it will stay on full time. Can't have that so they gave me a few plugs to cover the sensor on the dash. Well, it popped off on route 106 in W. Bridgewater, MA, just around the corner from Bettencourt's Cycle. As I'm pulling into a small shopping area, I avoid this car whose driver didn't see this big yellow bike, with lights flashing, and driver in day glo green jacket. Could have been another of those "most accidents happen within 25 miles of home" statistics.

I'm going to have to research pegs. Even though a utopia back rest was added, I never could ride resting up against it. Not being large is probably why. Different handlebars? Don't know. Plus, I found my leg/feet position uncomfortable for long trips. I like to sit as if I'm in a chair and be able to slide my feet forward. More research.

The following items were added to Big Bird: belly pan, Show Chrome uppers, Baker bottoms, Utopia back rest, modulating headlights, and a power park center stand.

More practice is needed to feel more comfortable with slow speed stuff, stopping, etc. (Damn it, that gas hose can't reach this far over.
) But this bike is worth the wait. It's nice to finally understand what you all have felt for years. What a beautiful machine to ride.
Can't wait until we move out to SW Utah.

Finally, the Bird is wider than the double door entrance to my shed. More research!

Thanks for your time.
 

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Congrats Dan, you broke it in right anyway. I was going to ask what color but I think your name for it provides a clue.
My X father in law used to be a senior olympian but he can't afford it anymore, he's only 90 and would like to keep going until he gets old. He does still have some senior world records I believe. His name is Dr Rod Parker, retired from dentistry this year.
 

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Congratulations on the new ride. One of these day's, I'll get one of the 1800's but for now, I'll enjoy my 1500.



Great account of the ride home



Enjoy
 

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Congratulations on the new ride! You will really enjoy that 1800.

I like the color ... wish it had been available in2008.

Bob
 

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Hi Dan:

I am glad you have got your new bike and arrived home with it safely. Not so sure even for an 1800 I would have endured those temperatures, we have been hit with some unusual cold weather this past ten days.

I did have to laugh though when that other feller on the other forum told you to watch out for snow.......you gotta watch him, he gives away chrome fish too!!:D


You may find the Kuryakyn handle bar risers a great help. They allow you to sit back and not reach, most likely the very best mod I have done to my bike and they also greatly improve low speed handling.

The Mick-O-Pegs highway pegs will also get rid of those aching knees. The 1800 is the best bike on the road, but the comfort on it is a paradox. It does sit you up straight and keeps you posture good and puts you in perfect position for safety, and to see and to be close to the controls and is comfortable on the top end, but yes that leg position on a long haul is a killer. I do not know of anyone who can tolerate their knees bent up back and behind them for a long trip, it is just not comfortable. So the Micks will take care of that.

As for your modulator, that is your personal choice, but I run mine on high beam and let it flash. I want to be seen, did not understand why you were covering it up? Stays on at night? Should not, sensor should kill it just before dark and not let it on untill sunrise. People will at times pull off the road as they do think you are an emergency vehicle, and an occasional fool will take exception to this, and develop a case of road rage, I have had that happen one time, this is a public forum or I would tell you the solution to that:). But those modulators are life savers, you can see people see you, it is very obvious, not a cure all, but they sure do make you seen.


Enjoy your bike, and be careful of folks giving away chrome fish. :) Kit
 

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Kit Carson wrote:
As for your modulator, that is your personal choice, but I run mine on high beam and let it flash. I want to be seen, did not understand why you were covering it up? Stays on at night? Should not, sensor should kill it just before dark and not let it on untill sunrise.

Kit
Thanks KC for the input. I put the plug over the modulator sensor so it would not run full time during daylight hours. For now, I guess, I want to be able to turn them on & off when I want to. There are times when they are of no help and more bothersome to others such as in traffic or riding on a major highway for some time in the same lane. I'll still look into getting the on/off switch and see how it goes from there. I'm speculating that drivers in SC are a little more tolerant than the MA drivers.

By the way, the picture shown was taken in front of Darlington Raceway (Track?). I added the extra 22 miles for that picture so I can give one to my BIL who is a Sprint Cup fan and races go karts as a hobbie.
 

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I know about 40 people who have all purchased from Carolina Honda. I would assume they are still using the same modulator assembly. Try this: With the Hi/Lo switch in the Hi or low position simply turn the switch to the opposite setting and very quickly turn it back to its original position, this should turn the modulator off, unless they have changed to something new, this should work. All the bikes in our club that have had modulators installed there, this is how they work, you can simply turn it off with the switch. That way there is no need for any cover . The modulator defaults to on when you start the bike and if you switch to hi or low it still stays on, but if you turn it quickly to the other setting and quickly back it turns it off. I also do this sometimes when I am sitting in a long traffic line and bugging someone in front of me, I will temp turn it off, and then switch it back once we get to moving.

Could be they have started using something different, but that is what they have been using.

Kit
 

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Glad you finally got your new smile machine. We have to get together sometime in the future for a ride.
 
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