MY HARLEY DAVIDSON
This is a picture of my recently acquired 2006 Harley Davidson 1200 Low Sportster. It is my first Harley and the first time I have ridden a bike in 28 years. My previous bike was a Honda CB200, a big difference. I have to admit I was a bit nervous about riding again after all this time, but credit to the dealers 'St Leger Harley Davidson' of Doncaster, they lent me a demonstrator to get used to while mine was being prepared, even though it was raining!! The trip back from Doncaster to my home town of Gainsborough, some 20 miles away was daunting. It was raining fairly heavily, I was feeling very unconfident and took all corners and roundabouts nearly vertical! With the added worry of my Father and Wife following my every move from the car I was surprised I made it back at all. We stopped off at my parents house in Retford and Lesley, my wife, made the surprising decision to ride pillion the remainder of the 11 miles back home. On arrival the bike was safely parked in the garage awaiting a dry spell for a bit of a clean and polish. Since its purchase in May this year, we have had many runs out at weekends, mainly short trips local to where we live. We did however manage a trip into the peak district on a wonderfully hot summers day and were surprised to see the bikers camaraderie still alive and well. At the moment the bike is pretty much stock, with the only additions being the sissy bar and tank bra. I do have plans to add forward controls and perhaps a slash cut exhaust system.
We are members of the local HOG chapter (www.stlegerhog.org.uk) but with working away from home during the week have only managed one ride out this year and that was to Skegness. This was my first group ride ever and an unforgettable experience, especially when all fourteen of us piled into a little petrol station and took over the forecourt. I will get to more when I'm back home guys I promise.
Now that winter is drawing nearer, we will be making less and less trips out but come spring .... different story.
As you can see, I did manage to get the stage 1 completed with Vance & Hines Sideshot exhaust system and a Kuryakyn Hyper charger. The bike was now quicker and louder and we enjoyed many rides out with the chapter. One thing we did find was that it really wasn't a two-up bike. We were cramped on long trips and the rear suspension often bottomed out. So it was regret that we eventually succumed and traded up for a larger machine. So in 2009 the sportster was exchanged for a brand new Softail Custom.
This gave us more room and more comfort and certainly a lot more power. We even managed our first trip overseas, a day trip on the ferry to Rotterdam to meet up with the local Harley chapter who took us for a lovely day out before our return on the overnight ferry.