By: Lloyd F Larimore
• June 26, 2019 – quintessential (50th Anniversary) of the movie Easy Rider (I remember seeing this movie over the 4th of July weekend while stationed overseas when I was still a young man in the military and it obviously made a lasting impression as I can still hear the theme song in my head, “Heading Out on the Highway, looking for Adventure!” – by Judas Priest
• MOA Rally 2020 – during the May BMW MOA Board Meeting it was announced that MOA Rally 2020 will be held June 25~28, 2020 in the “Western Region” and hosted by the MONTANA EXPOPARK in Great Falls, MT. The Montana Expopark is a spacious 133 acre facility that offers a lot of exhibition space, conference / meeting rooms and a large lawn area for camping. Located just off I-15, Expopark provides easy access to some great riding areas in the Mountain West. Registration goes on sale January 1, 2020 so mark your calendar as a reminder.
• Rumor has it that we may soon have a new MOA Ambassador in our area (the first for Utah?).
Not long ago someone asked me; “What is an Airhead”? and I realized that just because someone may have been riding a motorcycle for several years, old school terms and motorcycle slang may be something a bit odd to understand. Then I thought to myself, “while I’ve been around motorcycles most of my life, I too have often found myself wondering what a couple of seasoned veteran motorcyclists were talking about”.
Surprise! I’ve discovered there is actually a “Dictionary of BIKER SLANG” on the market (for those that prefer “digital media”, I’m sure you can find an eBook version).
Some of the most common terms used rather loosely by motorcycle riders that may or may not be understood by others, include (not all included in the dictionary):
ATGATT – All The Gear All The Time (refers to wearing Helmet, Gloves, Boots and proper Riding Gear “All The Time” – the only way to ride).
Airhead – a term usually associated with older, air-cooled BMW motorcycles (although other brands including Harley’s, Indian’s and many European and Japanese motorcycles were air-cooled rather than oil or liquid cooled).
Oil Head – oil cooled (usually a combination of air and oil cooling the engine)
Wet Head – liquid cooled engine (using conventional radiator and anti-freeze to cool the engine similar to how a car engine is cooled).
Biker – this can be interpreted for those on a bicycle or motorcycle so be sure which group you are talking with.
Rocker – still used in the UK to refer to motorcycle riders that typically wear leathers and hang out at places like the ACE Café (put this stop on your bucket list. My first visit to the ACE Café was way back in 1969 on my Royal Enfield and I wasn’t able to return for another 30 years. Fortunately, I was able to return again, with my nephew in May 2009. The ACE Café has been open since 1938 and not much has changed over the years).
Café Racer – a motorcycle customized in the style of the British Street Racing versions typical of the 1960’s to 1970’s (still the most popular design parked in front of the ACE Café).
Flathead – the early Harley-Davidson engine design from 1919 – 1937
Knucklehead – a Harley-Davidson engine produced from 1936 – 1947
Panhead – a specific Harley-Davidson engine design from 1948 – 1965
Ironhead – a Harley-Davidson engine “Sportster” design from 1957 – 1985
Blockhead – a Harley-Davidson engine design from 1984 – 2000 (this is also Lucy’s favorite name to ridicule Charlie Brown).
Flat Head – early BMW and automotive engines with the valves located in the cylinder block vs the present and more efficient location in the cylinder head (early Ford Flat Head V8 engines are still one of the most aesthetic works of art ever developed – at least in my humble opinion).
Ape Hanger’s – high rise handle bars that reach above the riders’ shoulders
Clip-On’s – sport bike handle bars
Bobber – usually a customized motorcycle that has the fenders cut down / shortened
Naked – stripped down or basic motorcycle without fairings or windscreen
Cruiser – designed strictly for “cruising” down the street or along the highway
Bagger – equipped with hard saddlebags
Upside Down – (owe more than it’s worth)
Cream Puff – highly marketable or all original classic (may apply to a car or motorcycle, or a recent Cushman Silver Eagle that I saw on Craigslist-Portland-Oregon, listed for $ 8500 firm).
There were a lot of terms that “should have been” added that we often hear in the world of BMW motorcycles (i.e.; Hexhead, Camhead, Paralever and Telelever), but perhaps unique to specific brands are being reserved for the 2nd Edition.
Make Life a RIDE to enjoy.