I did the unthinkable. Now I need to confess, so let me come right out and say it.
I traded in Lizzie, my beloved V-Star 1300. Lizzie is the loyal friend who took me on all the adventures you see in the right sidebar. Yes, I do feel like a dirty, rotten traitor!
Here’s the thing. At 725 pounds (unloaded), she was becoming too much to handle. During the 64,000 miles we were together, not once did I drop her or even bump her into anything. Let’s just say I ain’t gettin’ any younger and the time was coming. . . .
I was vaguely aware of all this a year ago, but refused to admit it. A strong desire to avoid reality is the real reason I didn’t ride much in 2012. You see, to me, she was never “just a machine.”
This is one of the last big adventure shots of Lizzie, taken in Theodore Roosevelt National Park in 2011. She’s at her best here — dependable, loaded, and raring to go with an easy turn of the key. Totally sweet ride!
I traded her in at Whiteside Motors, a longtime neighborhood business down the street. They treated me well and were glad to take her, even with the EFM Auto Clutch. In fact, one of the guys at Whiteside has ridden with an auto clutch and thinks they’re great.
I thought long and hard about replacing her with a smaller motorcycle and installing an auto clutch, but decided to go with a maxi scooter for a few important reasons. 1) An auto clutch is a bit pricey to have installed; 2) no clutch lever on a maxi scooter; 3) for my purposes, a maxi scooter can do everything as well as a motorcycle; 4) a maxi scooter is extremely easy and fun to ride; 5) you don’t feel engine heat on a maxi scooter; and 6) you don’t get pummeled by updraft on a maxi scooter. The only real negative is that I hate the term “maxi scooter”!
For more information on the EFM autoclutch, I review my experiences in this series of articles.
EFM Auto Clutch — First Impressions
EFM Auto Clutch — Almost-But-Not-Quite-Final Impressions
EFM Auto Clutch — Final Review
EFM Auto Clutch — One Year Later
I’m now the owner of a pearl white 2009 Suzuki Burgman 400. (Don’t let that “400” fool you into thinking it can’t handle highway speeds.) At 450 pounds, it feels like nuthin’ to move around. Major relief! While the change has been painful, it’s for the best.
So far my only out-of-town ride on “Pearl” was to the Hill Country Cupboard in Johnson City with my friend, Byron. Here she is with Byron’s 1992 BMW K75RT.
So there you have it. I feel much better, having confessed. Now to get that Burgie set up for some long rides!
Peace on the Road!