Tuesday, November 30, 2010

What We Want For You For Christmas

For fingerless glove rider:
These are for you oh-mutilator of the metacarpals. Your complete lack desire to keep those digits firmly affixed to your hands inspires our desires to sell you these BMW Allround 2 gloves:

- A waterproof touring glove
- Leather/textile outer with climate membrane
- Leather fingers with understated pattern and embossed lines
- Cordura® knuckles with Suprotec® foam underlay
- Doubled leather in vulnerable areas of the palm
- Ball of the thumb reinforced with Keprotec®
- Rubber visor wiper on forefinger
- Light quilting
- Long reflective strips along edge of hand
- Wind and waterproof
- “BMW” lettering on the Velcro fastener
- Colour: black
- Sizes: 6/6½–12/12½

For the novelty egg-shell helmet rider:
This is for you oh-neglector of the noggin. You say "gives me a better field peripheral vision. We say "makes face ragged like Ben Roethlisberger." So throw away that old skull cap you call a D.O.T. lid and we'll get one of these under your christmas tree:

-N103 - a versatile and functional flip front helmet with internal sun visor and various communications options! Will work as rider to pillion intercom via wire or Bluetooth (optional extras).
-A very plush, SAFE and comfortable lid with a host of features that has made it a hit with Ride Magazine. The communications options are sure to make it a great success!

And for you leather vest over long sleeved Bon Jovi t-shirt rider, perhaps self preservation's biggest nose-thumber. Your disinterest in skin wellness has the rest of us dry heaving in our helmets because your forearms look like burned steak!

We suggest you let Santa send you the BMW Airshell Jacket:

•Excellent visibility on account of signal yellow fabric.
•Equipped with the BMW’s NP protectors at elbows and shoulders.
•Width adjustments at the elbows, cuffs and hem.
•Velcro flaps at the front zipper.
•Two zip pockets on the front.
•Waterproof inner pocket.
•BMW Motorrad embroidery on the left front.
•BMW rubber batch at the right sleeve.
•Connecting zipper: 40 cm/15.7 in.
•Good shape, pattern identical to the existing Boulder jacket.
•Good fitting of the body protection.
•Removable climate insert. Insert makes jacket wind and waterproof.
•Most price competitive jacket value within the BMW Riders’ Apparel collection.
•Shell: Cordura 500, airy Polyamide mesh.
•Lining: 100% Polyester.
•Climate insert: Polyester with PU membrane and thermal lining. The insert can be attached to the jacket by zippers.
•Color: Black / signal yellow / grey mesh.

Merry almost Christmas!

Friday, November 26, 2010

Black Friday Sale and FOOD!

Hey Everyone,
Today, Friday Nevember 26th we are having our annual Black Friday super sale. Come on by for great savings on all your favorite toys! We'll also be cooking burgers and hot dogs for all you motorcyclists that are burned out on turkey.

The San Diego GS Riders

We started a GS rider Group to get together and do some off road rides and promote the under-estimated capabilities of the GS. After all having a GS and not riding off road is like having a boat and hanging out tied off to the dock. We are hosting rides, training and clinics. Check us out on our Facebook page: "SD GS Riders" for ride dates, and posts about our great adventures.

Our first ride was to the top of Otay Mountain October 30th, a day that started out very wet. I was on my way to the shop from Oceanside in the morning and it was absolutely pouring rain. I thought the ride was going to be a bust but I was really impressed with the 24 riders that showed up for the ride in the pouring rain. If this was a street bike ride there would have been maybe 5 guys show up. GS riders are REAL MEN, hardcore riders. We did some training for a few hours and then the rain stopped. It ended up being great weather for the ride because it was not hot and there was no dust on the trail.

The ride was not too difficult making it a fun day for all. We traversed up the mountain putting our new found skills to the test. We ended up a the top of the mountain with some spectacular views like far south into Mexico, the Otay reservoir to the west, and far west you could see down town San Diego. I was told on a clear day you can see San Clemete Island. There are three WWII bunkers just off the main trail that we explored as well. After descending down the other side of the mountain we stopped just before Barrett Junction to gather the group and share some stories. I have never see so many helmets filled with bigger smiles. A handful of riders who could not get enough, broke off and took a more difficult trail out to 94. What a great day!

The best part of Adventure riding is, no traffic. How many times have you had your favorite road ruined by cars trying to kill you, slow moving RVs towing trailers, and 18 wheelers. We didn't see any of those on the trail. The few Jeeps we did encounter were pulled off to the side waving us past them. How often does that happen on your street ride! Reason #2 to own an adventure bike is 98 percent of the world is unpaved. Why limit your options.The GS can take you places most people don't ever see. (like the beautiful view we had a the top of the Otay Mountain). I get a sense much like a climber who uses his ropes and other tools to conquer a mountain. I rode a 500-600 lb beast up this mountain, how cool is that. A great experience and it only cost a tank of gas.

Hope to see you on the next adventure ride.
Thanks for reading,
-Scott Coakley

Sunday, November 21, 2010

These Moto Weekends

These Moto Weekends

Hello from Las Vegas! I'm sitting in my hotel room at the MGM Grand Hotel and Casino updating you all from the 10th floor. I had an interesting thought this morning: I might be the only person in Vegas that didn't come to gamble. Matter of fact I haven't played so much as one slot machine. I stopped here last night to see a favorite comedian (Kevin James) after 2 days spend dirt riding with an old friend. At the same time Gary Orr, Mark Pohlson, Ed Bell and Sergio Rico are at Willow Springs racing an assortment of S1000RR's and one very tuned R1200S. Jason Turner, Jeremy Toye and company are in China of all places for a TT style race! Our good friend and client Sondra Lagnado is somewhere along the Baja Peninsula.
You can follow her here:

And certainly other friends are enjoying weekend rides in various places. Where am I going with all this? Well it occurred to me that San Diego BMW Motorcycles has become something of a hub for a living, breathing wheel that is our moto lifestyle.

On any given Thursday the shop is a bee hive of activity with various employee's, clients and friends gathering gear, bikes and picking up last minute moto-goodies before a weekend of riding. The race team guys fire up the forklift and load the trailer with slicks, generators, tire warmers, etc. The dirt guys (Myself included) are throwing gear bags, tents and gas cans into the pickup trucks. The travelers are stopping in for a new tire plug kit, spare quart of oil or a new visor for a helmet. The Romeo's are taking in a cup of coffee before stepping off in search of fine Southern California cuisine. Then, as if someone tossed a firecracker right in the middle of the madness, vehicles, motorcycles and riders head off in every direction from the hub like so many spokes. Each spoke ending at a favorite or sometimes new riding spot.

This time yesterday I was exploring a friends tiny, home made motocross track in Indian Springs. At that same time Jason Turner was swapping out a set of slicks on Jeremy's race bike on the other side of the globe. Gary, Mark and the guys were exchanging pointers in a garage at Big Willow. And Sondra was negotiating sand washes in Mexico.

Today (Sunday) bikes will be loaded back into trucks and trailers. Proper dual sport riders will strap tents and gear back onto GS's. Baja explorers will turn 180 degree's and head back north toward the US / Mexico border. I'll spend the next 6 hours behind the wheel of an F150 driving southwest on I-15. Jason and Jeremy will sit 13 hours on an international flight. Gary and the race guys will drag the race trailer south from Lancaster. Each traveling along their spoke from the outer reaches of the rim back toward the hub. Some of us nursing wounds (I managed to sprain my right foot), some reliving near crash moments (Mark is always good for one or two of those!), still others smiling all the way home with trophy's nestled safely at their feet.

Tomorrow (Monday) the entire proceedings come to a proper close. Monday mornings at the greatest BMW Motorcycle Dealership in the nation are something not to be missed after moto weekends. Gary will most certainly be giving all those with a willing ear the Cliff's Notes from a successful weekend at Wilow Springs. Clients who have arrived for an early morning service appointment will take turns at the coffee counter while Gary's play by play holds their interest. The Romeo's will be there too filling Scott, Geoff and I in on the local roads (and restaurants). Sondra promised to stop by and tell us all about her first solo Baja dual sport adventure...also mentioned she's probably need a couple new turn signals. Jason Turner will probably have an entire book worth of stories from his international travels but no one ever listens to him. I keep telling him it's all about the delivery!

So if You had a good, great or epic moto weekend travel back toward the center along your spoke and tell us about it. Because after all, it all starts and ends at the hub. You might even get mentioned on the ever prestigious San Diego BMW Motorcycle blog!

Thanks for reading
-Sean DeAngelis

Monday, November 15, 2010

Product Tested: The Shoei Qwest Helmet

Finally a full face helmet built for sport touring! Most of us are familiar with the typical full face helmet: Lighter, faster, more expensive and cooler graphics. You can expect to spend $600-$700 dollars for a real high end full face helmet. Aria's RX series, Shoei's X12 series, Nolan's X-Lite series...the list goes on. Problem is these high end full face helmets evolved to encompass performance. They are light, look incredible, vent air very well and the liners are often the best (moisture wicking, different sized pads offered, etc...)

Then there are the "middle of the road" full face helmets that each manufacturer offer as a cheaper alternative to their flagship models. These more reasonably priced helmets often look the part of their higher priced brothers and sisters but seldom perform as well. Often times much heavier, noisier and less comfortable.

Enter Greg from Helmet House and his newest offering from Shoei. The Shoei Qwest full face helmet has sport touring written all over it. The main focus of this newest generation Shoei as mentioned earlier: QUIET, well ventilated, uber-comfortable liner and guts and VERY large peripheral visor and cutaway. Shoei scored BIG on every single one of these points. Here is a link to Shoei's sales pump in the Qwest:
But since all too often the hype doesn't match the performance I'll give you my personal run down.

My riding over the past two years has really gotten away from the mileage side of things. 90% of my rides are 300 miles or less, at a spirited pace on my sportier bikes and almost never at night. 50% of these remaining miles are racked up at track days. This pretty much eliminated my need for a modular helmet which although convenient are always a lot heavier than a full face helmet.
I have been a long time user of the Arai brand of helmets. Problem is the Arai that fits me best and performs the way I like was the Quantum. And every 2 years I could expect to drop $600 on a new one. It was a considerable expense but one I chalked up along side sticky tires...over the top but absolutely imperative. But despite my love of the Quantum helmets there were a few nagging issues that left me unsatisfied. 1 - You need a degree in mechanical engineering, a lamp with a genie in it and no less than 10 Our Fathers to change the damned visors. 2 - The inner liner feels like a 12 cent roll of toilet paper against the skin.
The Qwest uses the typical Shoei visor replacement method: open visor, pull little release tab, remove visor, place new visor over pivots, close visor and relax. The liner also typical Shoei: Soft, smooth, replaceable, adjustable and above all comfortable. The peripheral vision is incredible. The inner shell tapers up and out from the user's face giving a huge view left, right, up and down. The gasket that runs around the visor seat is super soft and thick giving the lockable shield a perfect seal. The price was a VERY reasonable $369. Lastly, my personal favorite point, the helmet is QUIET. Extremely quiet...like, flea's sneeze quiet. Not ONE of my motorcycles has a windshield and this helmet manages to keep the ambient noise levels well within reason.

In keeping with tradition I got the pink one:

So if you're in the market for a full face helmet and a tired of the same old offering from the usual suspects look no further than the Qwest.

Thanks for reading,
-Sean DeAngelis

Monday, November 8, 2010

2010 Day In The Desert Recap - Part 1

Hey Everyone and welcome to another update to the San Diego BMW Motorcycles blog. Today I'm going to recap the events of October's "Day In The Desert" GS instructional class held in Ocotillo Wells OHV Park.

Friday night Aaron Klein and myself loaded up our gear, the grill, the pop tent and a cooler of delicious brats from Busher's Meats in Ramona. We headed east on 78 all the way out to Ocotillo Wells OHV area to set up camp for the following day's GS Instructional class. Aaron, Andrew Hursch and myself were going to use the dry lake bead just north of Ocotillo Airport to give 30 or so BMW GS riders a few tips and tricks before last weekends GS Dual Sport Ride with Jim Hyde and his crew. On our way out we ran into Tudor Tomas on his new F800GS. Tudor planned on meeting up with us out at Ocotillo but was going to ride dirt trails from Ramona all the way to Scissors Crossing. After a few quick "hello's and goodbye's and see-ya-later's" Aaron and I contunied east toward the desert. Oh. And the Day In The Desert went really well too. Here are some pics:

At about 5:00pm we arrived at the OHV Park and picked a great spot with an overhead, fire pit and a coal grill. We were in view of the highway but far enough in that dust and ambient noise from the passing vehicles would not be an issue. We quickly unloaded and set up camp the hopped on the bikes for a pre ride of the next day's loop. Other than some really slick mud in a few washes the ride was uneventful and I was confident the loop we had in mind would make a great post-class ride to finish the class.

Back at the truck for about 30 minutes I'm about to light the grill and cook dinner when Tudor pulls up. Had had put together Rodrigues Canyon, Grapevine and a few other trails out of Ramona and was all smiles with the performance of his new ride. After a little more small talk Tudor asks if Aaron and I want to go for a quick ride as the sun is setting. Reluctantly, only because we had just been out g, we agree to show him the next day's loop. Again the ride is uneventful until we dive into San Felipe wash. The sides of the wash are pretty reasonable with some rain packed sand and sediment. The centerline through the wash however is full of the aforementioned mud slicks. Aaron and Tudor take off ahead on their skinnier bikes and I put along on the 1200GS working on being smooth and NOT getting mud caked in every crevasse of my shop loaner. The sun had set by now and we were all riding solely on our headlights. Except in Tudors case he was slightly out-riding his headlight. I rounded a curve in the wash only to find Tudor's bike on it's side facing me and Tudor laying next to it. Aaron was working on getting his bike parked to help Tudor:

Me: Tudor, what's up?
Tudor (dead pan): My leg is broken. Both tib and fib, compound fracture. I can't move.
Aaron: Your leg is broken? Are you sure dude...because...you're awfully calm right now.
Tudor: Ooooh yeah. It's broke. It's facing hte wrong way.
(Aaron and I pan our eyes down slightly further only to confirm Tudor's words. His right leg is facing the wrong way)
Me (trying to hold back dry heaving) : Ok bud. We gotta lift you back on your bike. Can you ride back if we get you on your bike?
Aaron: I don't think that's a good idea.
Me: It's a fine idea. Tudor, if we get you on your bike can you ride it back? We're only about a mile from camp.
Tudor: Yeah I think so

So Aaron and I get under each of Tudor's arms, lift him up rocking chair style and get him situated on the seat of his bike. Tudor pretty much screamed in agony through that particular part of the operation.

Aaron: Ok dude. You're on your bike, you need help getting your helmet back on?
Tudor: Um. What am I doing?
Me: You're gonna follow me back to camp
Aaron: He doesn't look so good.
Me: Tudor, are you ok?
Tudor: I'm gonna pass out.

So now Aaron and I run around the bike fire-drill style and get a shoulder under each of Tudor's arms and lift him BACK off the bike and onto the ground.

The decision is made at this point that I'm going to leave Aaron with Tudor and ride the 1200GS back to the van. I unload everything out of the back of the van and drive down Shell Reef expressway to San Felipe wash. I turn into the darkness of the wash and was able to navigate the van to within 20 feet of Aaron and Tudor. Aaron makes a sort of bed / leg stabilizer out of sleeping bags and 2 fold out cushions that he brought. We lift Tudor into the back of the van, Aaron gets back on his bike and we drive back to the campsite. Tudor is using his arms and good leg to brace himself against the van's bumping along the rocky trail. Once back at camp I hop on the back of Aaron's bike and he rides me back pillion to the crash site to retrieve Tudor's F800GS. FINALLY back at camp with all bikes we ask the family in the next camp to keep an eye on our gear while we run Tudor to the hospital. Tudor's girlfriend works as a nurse at Scripps in La Jolla so we had about a four hour drive ahead of us.

At 8:30pm I park the van at the ambulance entrance of the Scripps in La Jolla and Aaron and I jump out. We're covered in dirt, driving a van that has S1000RR race bikes painted all over it and are frantically trying to get help form the two EMT's parked next to us. All the comotion got the attention of the receptionist who came walking out and asked "What IS this? I mean, I know it's a van but what is it doing HERE?!?!" Aaron looks at her plainly as says simply as he slides open the side door "It's an ambulance tonight. We Oh. And the Day In The Desert went really well too. Here are some pics:got a broken guy in here."

Well that gets the two EMT's, the receptionist, a passing doctor and another nurse from inside the ER moving like fire ants over a melting Popsicle. Aaron and I can only stand back and let the pro's get Tudor into the hospital and taken care of. Once he was inside and the nurse assured us we could not go back there because we were not family we left rather unceremoniously. At 11:45pm we pull back into our campsite exhausted, cook a quick dinner and crashed out (no pun intended).

"What happened to Tudor in the wash?" you ask? Well I'll tell ya! Seems Aaron decided to pick up the pace a bit running through San Felipe and Tudor took off in chase. The two of the diced back and forth for a bit before Tudor really dropped the hammer on the 85hp F800GS. All was going pretty well until he rounded the bend in the wash and right there in front of his headlight (which he was out-riding) was A BIG SLIPPERY PATCH OF STUPID! Tudor's front wheel washed out slightly in the stupid but he was able to catch it and right the bike. But just he got things gathered back together the rear tire lost traction in the stupid and pitched bike and rider to the ground. As the bike slid along the desert floor Tudor's leg got caught under it and twisted around the wrong direction.

So all in all it was a pretty rough start to the weekend. I promise part 2 has a much happier ending. Tudor's leg is going to be fine...in 4 month's....and everyone who attended the GS training class had a blast. That ride report to follow!