Happy Labor Day

1 September 2014
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What a day and what a weekend this has been!   It’s been go-go-go the entire weekend, and I’m just starting to slow down a bit this evening as I write the blog.

My Old-School Bianchi

My Old-School Bianchi

Today’s high points were a quick early-morning 15-mile bicycle ride (before it became too hot, which it has been doing a lot lately here in So Cal).   I enjoy getting on my old-school, steel-frame Bianchi bicycle.   We head over to a local coffee shop for an iced coffee and a toasted bagel for our standard ride.   It’s good times.   I like nearly anything on two wheels, and the bicycle thing for me goes back about six decades.   I’m old, but I still do pretty well on that bicycle.

After the bicycle ride, I fired up the Baja Blaster.  I hadn’t ridden my CSC in about three weeks, but like always, it fired up at the first touch of the starter button.   Part of that is the warm weather, part of it is my keeping her on a trickle charger, and part of it is just the nature of my wonderful CSC 150 motorcycle.   Every time I get on it I think about our ride down to Cabo San Lucas.   I’m going to do that again someday.   And if you’re new to the blog and you’re wondering what that’s all about, you can read the Cabo story here.

Anyway, today I took a 25-mile putt through the local neighborhood (downtown Upland) and then up to Mt. Baldy.   I grabbed a few shots because I knew I wanted to post them on the blog, and here you go…

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The Baja Blaster with a ’65 F-150 in downtown Upland

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At the Mt. Baldy Lodge, where I stopped for an iced tea…it was hot today!

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Euclid Avenue from the cockpit of a CSC 150 at about 35 mph

Last night we had dinner with the CSC senior management team, and the new RX-3 CSC Cyclone was our primary discussion topic.  Folks, you really need to keep an eye on the blog and on our website.   We’re going to be announcing some things regarding the price and how we go to market with our new 250 Adventure Touring bike in the very near future, and (trust me on this)…it will knock your socks off.

The new CSC RX-3 Cyclone!

The new CSC RX-3 Cyclone!

That’s it for now.   Start thinking about your new CSC Cyclone.   That’s all I can say for now.   More to come…and you’ll hear it first right here.

 

Our latest press release…

25 August 2014
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You can read it right here, folks…

http://www.prlog.org/12363512-csc-announces-new-250cc-adventure-touring-motorcycle.html

The certification effort is moving along, and we will be releasing the price on this exciting new motorcycle soon!

 

CSC Cyclone specs…

22 August 2014
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We’ve had a large number of requests for more info on the new CSC Cyclone RX-3, so here you go, folks!

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We’ll be posting more information, so keep an eye on us!

 

Rockport bound…

22 August 2014
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There must be something in the water in Rockport, Texas….folks there just love CSC motorcycles!

Take a look at this latest P-51 headed to the Lone Star State…

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This beautiful P-51 is going to Lone Star Louis, and it is just flat beautiful.   The colors really work on this motorcycle, and it’s a worthy compadre to the one we shipped to that same Texas town just a short while ago…

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We see that a lot…someone will buy a CSC motorcycle, then friends see it, and then the orders start coming in.   I think about what it must be like in Rockport riding around and seeing these bikes on the road.   Much the same as around here, I suppose, except I liked Texas a lot more than California.   Texas is a great state.

Larry and Lou, ride safe and enjoy your new motorcycles!

 

The RX-3 CSC Cyclone

21 August 2014
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That’s the name of our new 250cc Dual Sport, and it is coming along, folks.  There’s lots of behind-the-scenes activities on this exciting new bike happening, and we’ll be bringing more information to you soon.  In the meantime, here’s a photo I particularly liked…

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I know the big question is “how much?”   We’re working it, Amigos.   Soon.  And you’ll be happy when you hear it!   The excitement is there, and we’ve had folks trying to buy one already.   Keep an eye on us!

 

The Black Bobber is home!

21 August 2014
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Hey, that black Bobber that I told you about a few blogs down?

Well, it’s home, and Dad really likes it!

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Nicely done, Johnny, and we know your Dad loves it!

 

Tom’s Triumph trip…

21 August 2014
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I received this nice email from my good buddy Tom, who recently took a terrific trip on his Triumph in the Sierra Nevadas (alliteration, anyone?)…

Hello Joe,

A few photo’s of my recent road trip to visit my one and only 10-yr old granddaughter Ella.

On the return I went over Donner Pass, which overlooks Donner Lake.  Then followed 89 around the backside of Lake Tahoe, then on to Markleville over Monitor Pass down to 395 then on home.  

The total 1420 miles round trip. 

Here’s a Tom-ism.  When riding a motorcycle, the shortest distance between two points means you took a wrong turn. 

Tom

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Tom, thanks for the photos and the “Tom-ism.”  As always, great inputs.   There sure is some magnificent riding up there in those mountains.   I’m jealous!

 

Some answers…

17 August 2014
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Things are moving along sharply on the new 250cc Dual Sport.   We promised more information on this exciting new motorcycle, and this blog is the start.

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First things first:  We haven’t determined the price yet.   We’re working on that now, and we will have  a number soon.    There are many things that determine a motorcycle’s price, including the cost of the bike, the cost of certifying it here in North America, freight, the advertising budget, insurance, and a whole bunch of other things.   What I can tell you is this:   The bike is a premium motorcycle, but we won’t gouge you.   Our vision is to provide a superior product to you at a price that that will knock your socks off.   We intend to own the small-displacement adventure touring niche, and this bike is the start.  More to come on this, my friends.

Next question:  When will it be available?  The answer is by the end of the year.   The bike is going through the certification process now.   We’re experts at this, having done it on our Pro-One line of large custom V-twins, the CSC-150, and the CSC-250.   The approval process is complex.  It involves testing and evaluation by the US Department of Transportation, the US Environmental Protection Agency, and the California Air Quality Management District.   Our relationships and experiences with these guys have all been positive.   It will take a few months to get through it, and we’ll have the bikes fully certified by the end of this year.  Maybe sooner.  We’ll see.

Folks have asked what we’re going to call the bike.  It’s the RX-3.    The R stands for “road,” the X stands for “explore,” and the 3 is the engine’s displacement rounded up.   We like that name.

Another question:   Where is it made?   The answer is China.   The company that manufactures the bike for us is Zongshen.  I’ve been there.   They are the largest motorcycle manufacturer in the world.   I’ll do a blog about them in a few days.

Folks, you might hear uninformed comments by self-proclaimed experts about everything from China being junk.

I’m here to tell you it just ain’t so.

Here’s the deal…when I’m not riding and writing for CSC and Motorcycle Classics magazine, I’m consulting all over the world for all kinds of manufacturers, I teach manufacturing at the University level, and I’ve managed large manufacturing facilities.   I was in Scotland last month for a precision machine factory, I’ll be in Turkey next month at an armored vehicle manufacturer, and…well, you get the idea.   I’ve written several books on manufacturing and quality assurance (see, for example, www.ManufacturingTraining.com, and yep, that’s me!).   I’ve been in the Zongshen factory, and their quality and process control are the best I’ve seen in any factory anywhere in the world.  If you think the Chinese don’t produce quality goods these days, well, you just aren’t getting out enough.

Another tidbit…I know a little bit about adventure riding, too (take a look at www.MotoFoto.cc and you’ll see what I mean).   I’ve had Triumphs, Hondas, Harleys, Suzooks, Yamahas, and Kawasakis.   They are all good motorcycles, but this bike is the best combination of size, power, weight, comfort, and all the rest that goes into my idea of the perfect motorcycle.   The RX-3 is made for exploring the world.   It’s perfect, it’s the perfect size, and I’ve ordered the first one.    Make mine orange, Boss!

RGPeckHepburn-200Let me tell you just a bit about Zongshen.   They make parts for a certain German motorcycle manufacturer whose blue-and-white emblem is patterned after an airplane propeller.   They make machined parts for a certain US motorcycle manufacturer whose bike kind of makes a potato-potato-potato sound (you know…loud pipes save lives and all that).   And that motor scooter known the world over as Italian…you know, the one in the famous movie with Gregory Peck and Audrey Hepburn?   Well, you guessed it….they are made in the Zongshen factory, too.

Like I said, I’ve spent time with Zongshen in Chongqing.   The process control and quality I saw at the Zongshen factory are absolutely top flight.   They make our CSC-250 engines and they will be making the RX-3 for us    This is a high quality outfit, the bike is awesome, and it’s why we feel comfortable bringing the bike to you.   We wouldn’t do it if it wasn’t so.

So, on to some of the technical questions we’ve been getting about the bike’s specifications…okay, here we go:

  • The displacement is 250cc, the engine is a single-cylinder with a counterbalancer, it has an electric starter, and she’s water cooled.
  • The bike comes standard with front and rear guards, luggage (sidebags and a rear-mounted trunk), and a windshield.
  • The bike’s wheelbase is 55 inches.
  • It has hydraulic disk brakes front and rear.
  • The dry weight is 359 lbs.

We’re going to do a Baja trip with this bike.   We’ll probably time it for when the California gray whales are in Scammon’s Lagoon.   You should buy one and ride with us.

There’s more to come, folks, but that’s a start.

 

Al, Mosins, politics, and the new 250 DS!

15 August 2014
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Entrepreneur extraordinaire and extraordinarily nice guy…that’s my good buddy Al.   We have a lot in common, including a lifelong interest in Corvettes.   Al started driving Vettes when he was 12 (no kidding…he would take over when his Dad let him), and the appreciation for America’s sports car stayed with him.  Al owns several Corvettes, including the absolutely pristine ’72 you see below.

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Do you remember how cool those cars looked back in the day?  I sure do.   I built an AMT scale model of this exact car, and as a young guy I painted it bright red (just like Al’s ’72, and just like my Baja Blaster).

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I always wondered what it would be like to drive one of those Coke-bottle Corvettes, and folks, today I found out!

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Al kept telling me to hit it hard, but it wasn’t my car and it was so pristine I was a little afraid to abuse it.   Al sure turned that around when he got in the driver’s seat.  Wow!

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Lots of fun, folks, and what a car!   It’s true…there is no substitute for cubic inches!

I grabbed one more shot that showcases what has to be the most magnificent hood ever put on an American automobile…

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More good stuff….my wife (who’s kind of used to being in charge) finally got fed up enough with our city government here in So Cal that she’s running for City Council!   The next few months are going to be very interesting!  Her website is www.SusanBerk.com, so if you’d like, pay her a visit!   We’re getting to go to a lot of local functions, including a real interesting “Incredible Edibles” adventure to raise money for the local YMCA one night last week.  At the end, they played the Village People’s “YMCA” song and our local dignitaries did the YMCA thing…it was a lot of fun!

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More good stuff…our next Mosin rifle fun match is this Sunday.  Yep, I’ll be there…so will Duane, and maybe some of our other CSC riders…and you can bet I’ll have photos for you to see right here!  Maybe I’ll even get lucky and hit the quarter this time…

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And even more good news…things are moving along sharply on the new CSC 250cc dual sport, and starting this weekend, I’ll be posting more information on that fine motorcycle and our plans on bringing it to the North American market.

Some initial information….our new RX-3 is a water-cooled 250 that goes like a bat out of you-know-where, it handles better than any dual sport I’ve ever ridden, and it’s going to be very affordable.   It’s made by Zongshen, a company that is one of the finest motorcycle manufacturers in the world.   Folks, I know manufacturing, I know motorcycles, and I’ve been in the Zongshen factory.   Our new 250 dual sport is as fine as or better than any bike in the world.   I know what I’m talking about here, and I believe what I just said.  You will, too, when you see and ride this motorcycle.

Lots more to come, my friends, including photos of the Zongshen plant, specs on the new bike, and lots more.

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Ride safe and stay tuned, folks.   This new bike is going to a lot of fun!

(The yellow one is mine, Steve.)

 

On the road again…

15 August 2014
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That’s where our good buddy Howard is…take a look, folks!

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Great photo, Howard, and thanks for sending it here so we could share it with the rest of our CSC world.

Ride safe and enjoy your trip!

 

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