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Old 02-15-2014, 08:43 AM   #1
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Int'l MC Show-One FF's opinion

My $0.02 on the Progressive Int'l MC Show in Seattle this weekend:

I Drove the 3hr. round-trip, paid the $12 to get in and $12 to park with my pocket full of fun-money in anticipation of leaving with less money and a pile of goodies/gear. For me, it's mostly about the accessories, gadgets and MC gear. Looking at all the bikes is fine too, but that can mostly be done at local dealers if I wait another month or so for the new models.

In a nut-shell, I went home at the end of the night with my wallet only $9 dollars lighter as a result of the Taco DelMar fish tacos and slice of "Unconventional Pizza" from downstairs. Both good purchases. The show itself appeared to be a shell of what it once was, with a small fraction of vendor booths I saw 2 and 3 years ago (was unable to attend last year). If I wouldn't have walked through the whole thing twice, I could have seen it all in under 2hrs. Disappointing for a guy like me that enjoys the vendors/accessories.

NOTABLES:

1. I know they pay for booth space and that helps the show, but the magic bracelets/insoles, "biker jewelry", Taiwanese Leather goods, "let me clean your glasses for you" Anti-Fog snake-oil, chiropractors, and other quasi-motorcycle related vendors are just filler and a waste of time. No-Mar Tire changers are cool, I want one. SoundRider and MC Superstore had good booths and brought something to the table.

2. If you're an "artist" and going to travel the country hawking your $2,500 reprints of SOA memorabilia, you may want to think twice about showing-up in Seattle two weeks after the slaughter sporting your Denver Bronco stocking cap. www.motorcycleart.com Bad business move and he won the "all I hear is crickets" award. (background/left)


3. I don't want to start a war, and I've owned a few Harley Geezer Gliders in recent years, but from what I saw of Indian and Victory (I've actually ridden the Victories), it's time for HD to step-up their game. They've got the lead on styling and the loyal buyers of the "lifestyle" addicts, but between the even higher prices for WC models and the stagnant engine/chassis/suspension technology (while Indian/Vic are putting out way better HP/Torque out of the box) HD would be my 3rd choice if I were shopping for big cruisers right now.

4. If this was the Int'l Motorcycle and Insurance Show, it was a great success. More insurance booths than helmet vendors...

5. I'm assuming a few attendees are aware of the Asshole Parking Thread, this guy was not, and did it in a company car. He was not alone.


6. The "I wouldn't be caught dead on this" award. I failed to get a good photo of the other bike in this photo, but it was some late-model BMW butchered by some A-hole amateur welding student and mated with a pile of rusty tractor parts.

The OCC theme bike thing is lost on me, but as a Hawks fan, couldn't help but sort of like the Largent edition oil-dripper.

This Seahawk tribute was pretty well done, the forward-exiting exhaust would be good for winter riding.



7. Honda is in dire need of some new designers and focus-groups. Between the Valkyrie and the CTZ's? that whole brand is headed for the ditch.

8. KTM's 1190 knocked my socks off. They've always been a little too dirt specific for my riding habits, but those are incredible machines. Much lighter than the Tenere, more power than anything else I'm aware of, and may beat BMW in bang for buck & maintenance? Definitely on my short list for next big DS.

9. Zero (electric motorcycles) Interesting bikes, appear to be VERY well designed and built, excellent fit/finish/craftsmanship. But, $15k for a small bike that can get to a Starbucks or three before it needs 8hrs. on a charger?? I suspect Seattle was their ideal market and best sales stop on the tour.

10. If I get creamed by a cager and need an attorney, I'm not sure how jazzed I'll be healing from my traumatic injuries, hoping for a decent settlement, knowing that Russ Brown is taking such a huge cut that he's got a travelling circus with a herd of off-duty strippers and a fleet of custom bikes. I'm a big fan of capitalism and making lots of money, but I also don't like to see my doctor/insurance agent/realtor's offices gaudy and furnished like some corporate boardroom. That's just me.

I missed this show last year and hit the Vancouver, BC (Abbotsford) one instead. That show was huge and much closer to what the Seattle show used to be. I'll be hitting that one again this year. Probably not doing Seattle again unless new life is brought in. And now I go ride...

HAYVIATOR screwed with this post 02-15-2014 at 08:48 AM
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Old 02-15-2014, 09:00 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HAYVIATOR View Post
I missed this show last year and hit the Vancouver, BC (Abbotsford) one instead. That show was huge and much closer to what the Seattle show used to be. I'll be hitting that one again this year. Probably not doing Seattle again unless new life is brought in. And now I go ride...

I think you've missed Vancouver, it was last month.




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Old 02-15-2014, 10:03 AM   #3
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Well done review, thanks for sharing!!
Glad I stayed home

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Look around; isn't it obvious that YOU are gonna lose?
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Old 02-15-2014, 11:15 AM   #4
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Seattle Show

You nailed it!
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Old 02-15-2014, 11:21 AM   #5
81forest
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Excellent review, glad I saved my 12 bucks, and I live here! Not my cup of tea at all.
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Old 02-15-2014, 11:46 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HAYVIATOR View Post
7. Honda is in dire need of some new designers and focus-groups. Between the Valkyrie and the CTZ's? that whole brand is headed for the ditch.

8. KTM's 1190 knocked my socks off. They've always been a little too dirt specific for my riding habits, but those are incredible machines. Much lighter than the Tenere, more power than anything else I'm aware of, and may beat BMW in bang for buck & maintenance? Definitely on my short list for next big DS.
Good synopsis overall. I was surprised that Honda's footprint was as small as it was; it was dwarfed by all of the other Japanese manufactures. The Grom was appropriately fitting....

KTM is the only booth I spent some time learning about the lineup. Rep told me that about half of the engineering/product development personnel work on electronics -- no wonder the 1190's anti-skid and traction control systems are so highly acclaimed. It's the only bike at the show I could get really excited about (well, there was that Vincent Black Shadow, too....).

I'd add my disapointment with the "School of Rock" sideshow. No doubt those kids could jam pretty well, but I really enjoyed the trials/stunt/etc demo's of yore. The School of Rock seemed like an out-of-place patch of spackle attempting fill the void of an actual motorcycle attraction.

Still, not a bad way for a local to spend a Friday evening with my boys....
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Old 02-15-2014, 12:01 PM   #7
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Mighty fine review - great writing.
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Old 02-15-2014, 05:19 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HotChilliColdBeer View Post
I think you've missed Vancouver, it was last month.


Charlie
That sucks double, I failed to pay attention to their schedule as I knew I could make the Seattle show this year. My bad.
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Old 02-15-2014, 08:44 PM   #9
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This years VMC was awesome!!!!!!
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Old 02-15-2014, 11:15 PM   #10
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Pretty much spot on with my feelings after attending the Phoenix edition of the show. I bought my ticket on-line for $9.00 and that was about $3.00 more than the show was worth.

The show opened on Friday, all the demo trucks were there and had their bikes out, but no riding until Saturday. Made no sense to me when they had plenty of people milling about wanting to ride. You'd think they'd want to get in as many demo riders as they could in one weekend.

I did generally enjoy myself but not like I did in years past when the show was last in Phoenix. Rest of my thoughts are here.
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Old 02-16-2014, 09:44 PM   #11
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Looks pretty lame for 2 wheelers, lawyers and assholes are not a good mix, someones gonna get their feelings hurt. I am glad i skipped it and went sno riding instead. Waste of a perfectly good $12 dollar bill IMO. Thaks for the report and great reviews.
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Old 02-17-2014, 02:13 AM   #12
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That combination of BMW and garbage bins actually won a prize. Sheesh.

I went Sunday afternoon. Maybe everyone was tired, but the only helpful booth staff was at the KTM and BMW booths. The Grom was cool, though, even if most of the Honda staff either doesn't know or doesn't agree with Big Red's counter-cruiser strategy of building bikes with a cruiser riding position (DN-01, CTXxxx, F6B, Valkyrie) yet with sport bike styling. Seeing all of these bikes in a row made the design similarities obvious.

I've been to the last few years of this show, and to a much larger and nicer motorcycle show in the UK a few years ago. Obviously the UK show is aimed at 60 million potential consumers, but surely there must be an annual big show here in the US, maybe in Vegas? My comment at the post-show feedback iPad was that the show was shrinking, and thus losing relevancy. They need to hold it later in the year, in a venue where test riding is possible.
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Old 02-17-2014, 08:46 AM   #13
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The Godet Egli Vincent replica was 'the deal' for me. Other than Lorenzo's GP bike, probably the most expensive machine there. Never been able to figure out the tastes of people, who crowded around those stupid theme painted baggers and those garbage can rats, yet only minimal crowd around the Egli. Maybe I'm the one with the weird ass tastes in bikes. We've seen the thankful demise of the chopper craze, but I'm still on the fence with their replacement, the hipster themed rat bike movement. BTW, that poor BMW scrap metal thing, I just don't know.
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Old 02-17-2014, 09:01 AM   #14
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The BMW Rally in Salem last summer was about 10x better than this show in Seattle.

The family and I went up fully expecting to leave a large pile of cash at the expo center on farkles and other goodies. (Or at least have made decisions on products to spend our money on outside of the show.) No doing. There was a dismally small number of clothing and accessory booths.

I'll agree with the assessment of some of the manufacturers' displays. Most were underwhelming. In some cases, I get a better idea of their product line by just going to a local dealer. KTM and BMW were good. I was very impressed with Indian. Harley should be sweating big time right now.
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Old 02-17-2014, 10:02 AM   #15
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My first show

Wasn't thoroughly impressed but I did like it. If you paid attention when they introduced the school of rock, part of Progressive's philanthropy is support and promotion of education and arts... just what they do with their spare money. I enjoyed the music between rounds and while at next years show I will probably be one of those people taking lots of money to leave behind I mostly wanted to catch the lecture/seminar/presentations. Those too were good except for the northwest motorcycle history one. Those guys could have taken lessons from the school of rock teenagers, to me they seemed to be bumbling through it.

As far as the BMW scrap metal thing... Steampunk... it's got a following that apparently crosses over to motorcycles. I think they guy could've done a cleaner job of it

I stopped by the tire changer while they were doing a demo and thought we might have had a better view of the actual tire changing if that young lady had zipped up about 4 more inches but I just enjoyed the cleavage... er uh I mean the tire change demo... yeah, that's what I meant.

Would've liked to have gotten my picture taken with Flo but she didn't show on Sunday.
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