Last year I forgot to do my “First Year with the Road King” blog entry in August and ended up publishing the recap in November. Given that I’m doing the “Second Year with the Road King” blog entry just after Blue’s 2nd year anniversary, I’ve had to move a couple of the second year entries that got captured in the Nov ’14 blog entry to this one. So, my apologies if any regular readers have a deja vu moment. Regardless, we must report that it’s all been good and we’ve been having a blast!
As I said last year, if I had a chance to travel back in time I’d still buy Blue. The 2013 CVO Road King continues to be a perfect fit for us. I sometimes wonder if we’d be better served by a Road Glide, an Ultra or even by adding a batwing fairing to Blue but continue to come back to my senses and remind myself that even on freeway trips the simple windscreen on Blue has proven to be more than adequate, come rain or freezing temperatures.. noting we’ve gone through both of them with nary a complaint about needing more frontward protection from the wind or elements.
For a variety of reasons, the number of trips we’ve taken into the North Georgia mountains and other overnighters was down from the first year; however, we more than made up for it with our Florida trips and in particular our Key West adventure. We’ll probably knock out a trip to the Maggie Valley in the next few weeks and there are definitely more day trips and overnighters to Tennessee and North Georgia coming. Sadly, weather, health issues, family matters and the need to spend a bit more time on our pedal-powered bikes has cut into our big bike time, but we’re working on finding that happy median.
As you’ll see, in terms of modifications I haven’t made any real changes during the second year. I had to replace my cell phone cradle and DC plug and I also recently polished-out some boot scuffs on the plastic side panel covers and applied some 3M StoneGuard to protect them from future wear and tear, but that’s been about it. The Road King hasn’t really been wanting for anything: she’s about perfect.
It’s had a few nits — tire wear is troublesome and the stereo and cruise control switches had a few bugs. Otherwise, we’ve not had any other issues or failures that needed to be covered under the 2-year factory warranty. The engine heat can still be annoying at times and I’m still not sure how to fix that. But, for its handful of minor shortcomings, it’s still been a great bike for us that we’ll hold onto for a long, long time.
So, here now is a recap of our second 12 months / 8,000 miles of life with Blue; most of the entries are hyperlinked to the related blog posting just in case you’re house-bound by weather, stuck in a hotel on travel or can’t sleep at night:
- Chattanooga: A spur of the moment trip up for dinner, dodging rain all the way.
- Wheels Through Time Museum: Another Labor Day weekend trip up into North Carolina and Tennessee with an overnight in Gatlinburg.
- Panama City Beach: You guessed it, back to Thunder Beach!
- Daytona Beach: I think we may like Daytona a bit more than Panama City!
- Daytona Beach & Bike Week: We’ve definitely developed a fondness for Daytona during Bike Week. It has a different feel from Panama City Beach’s events.
- Thunder Beach, Spring Edition: An awesome 4-day trip to Panama City Beach for the spring 2015 edition of PCB’s Bike Week. Part II is here.
- 2,000 Mile Road Trip to Key West: An epic motorcycle vacation that took us from Atlanta to Key West and back over the 4th of July weekend.
- 3M StoneGuard: $16 for a 12×24″ sheet that was used to protect the custom-painted side panels from Miss Debbie’s boots.
- Front tire cupped and Strike #3
- iPod Controller & Gremlins
- Throttle grip end cap replacement
- Cruise control gremlins
- Paint & Finish Care with Zaino: I discovered Zaino in 2005 when we acquired Debbie’s S2000. It’s the most amazing line of paint care products I’ve found to date. Once every few months does the trick, but feel free to overdue for eye-popping results.
- ProTune on the Dyno: The TTS module that came with my Fullsac Stage I kit was pressed into service to unleash Blue’s full power and torque.
Gripes (No Change from Year #1)
- Engine heat; it’s really quite awful and amazing what we’ll put up with. However, we think the recent Pro Tune may have knocked the temp down a few notches.
- Primary & Clutch noise; something still ain’t right in there on these bikes.
- Lack of tire options; the Dunlops are far too prone for cupping for CVO use; owners need to have a choice if for no other reason than to give Dunlop motivation to fix the 407 CVO tire size tread design or compounds.
- Zinc hardware instead of stainless; would it kill you to use better hardware?
- The search for a better set of tires! Dunlops are still seriously lacking.
- Extended Service Plan… 3 or perhaps 5 years.
Blue joined our family on August 6, 2013 and came home on August 10, 2013. Thank you Bob Sanchez at Harley-Davidson of Atlanta!