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Discussion Starter #1
I had the chance to go to this show this weekend and... well frankly, I was disappointed. The last time I went to the show was a decade or more ago, and I remember it being huge. YAMAHA DIDNT EVEN BOTHER TO SHOW UP! There was Royal Enfield, which was cool to see - I liked their Himalayan model - and Ducati had a good presence along with the three wheeled bikes. But vendor selection was pitiful, and their guest speakers were sparce.

The highlight of the tour was listening to the girl who was their adventure rider rep, and picking up some maps of good mountain rides out near Wytheville, VA. Someone also said there is a new off road trail that was recently opened that went from Pennsylvania to Georgia. MID Atlantic Appalachian Trail? Something like that. I also got to try on a boot that uses the boa system to close and really like the flexibility.

I'm still in DC typing on my tablet, so I'll upload photos and more info when I get home to something with a real keyboard.
 

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That's weird because I went to the IMS/Progressive show in NYC about 6 weeks ago. Yamaha was there big-time as always. I thought the IMS tour was all the same all the way through.
And D.C. in between Maryland & Virginia I would think is a pretty big market for bikes, Jet Skis, etc. Guess I was wrong.
 
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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
Triumph and Ducati were not at the Cleveland show just a few weeks ago!!

Are you talking about this? https://ridebdr.com/
I believe so. Can't wait for the weather to warm up just a little more so I can get out there!

I will say, having an opportunity to sit on a variety of bikes without sales people hovering over you was very nice. I discovered I really like the Kawasaki FZ bikes, and confirmed to myself that I will probably buy a used CB500X as a secondary bike after all the others are sold - the CB just fits, feels so very comfortable, and the additional 200cc's on the interstate will be better for eating up the miles on a long road trip.
 
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So, here they are - photos from the IBS in DC. While the show itself fell flat, there were a few gems worth mentioning.

THE BIKES

NewRideProspects.jpg
While admitedly, I was disappointed that Yamaha was not at the show, i did happen to find several bikes that became instant prospects for new rides once I sat on them. Each bike is different, and would fill a different niche in my riding style, but also be flexible enough to become my "do all" bike.

First shown is the Honda CB500X. After sitting on the CB at the show, I was reminded of how comfortable the bike is and how well it fits me right out of the gate. This bike was a close contender with the Kawasaki Versys X300 late last year. I'd done a ton of research on both bikes, and honestly, if I'd gotten the same deal on the CB that I got on the Versys, the CB would be on my front porch right now. Of course, it would ultimately cost an additional $3,000 to be outfitted with spoked wheels, skid plate, engine guards, hand guards, etc., where the Versys only cost $580. So ultimately, I still think I got a better deal with the Versys.

Next shown is the Kawasaki Z650. Wow, this bike was a total surprise for me! I never expected to fit on a sports bike so well. This 'naked' bike is all the rage for smaller riders, and I can see why. Short wheel base, low seat height, light weight with low center of gravity, and a great ergonomic seating position... I wanted to ride out the door on that thing, foul weather be damned! Riding this thing could get me SO MANY TICKETS! LOL!! I want one. Buying a sports bike is the temptation I constantly try to avoid because I love to go fast, but this bike may actually overcome my common sense!

Last shown is the Triumph Bonneville T100. Eh, what can I say? I like the cafe racer aesthetics, and have always lusted after the Triumphs. The symetry... the simplicity... the flat seat... this bike is one I've always lusted after since first seeing them. Unfortunately, the ergonomics on most Triumphs is just a little too off for me. Of all the bikes they had on display, this particular Bonneville fit me the best. Unfortunately, unless I ride one and fall in love with the engine and power, this bike elicits a "hum" at best. And at $10,400, it better elicit more reaction than that.

BONUS BIKE

RoyalEnfield-HimalayanCombo.jpg
One motorcycle I'd been eager to see in person was the Royal Enfield Himalayan! When researching light weight adventure bikes last year, I ran across several reviews of this bike that left me intrigued. It is supposidly simple to work on, light weight, well equiped, and rugged - an exotic brother to the TW200 in my mind :D The Australians definitely loved them. And up close I can see why. It appeared to be everything they advertised it to be. Unfortunately, most of the Enfields were displayed on 18" platforms and I didn't feel like climbing up on one to test my balance or my luck. One thing that did concern me was how flimsy the engine guard and skid plate appeared. However, the guards at least were solid stock, not tubing, so I'm sure that plays a part in strength.


SHOW BIKES

There were quite a few custom rides that were pretty, but only two stood out enough that warranted photos - and they were both Indians.

Indian-CustomArmyCombo.jpg
The first bike is this neat homage to the Indian's role in the US Army. While this type of bike mod has been done countless times, the fit and function of this particular Indian really made me smile.

Indian-CustomAirCombo.jpg
The next bike is pure artistic genius! If I ever owned an Indian, it would be something like this. True artistry. LOVED IT!


THE GEAR

To say I was disappointed in the vendor selection is a major understatement. I was more interested in looking at a wide variety of gear than I was at the motorcycles - I already bought my bike after all. But except for a custom boot maker and a unique bag maker, the rest of the gear was the same I could have found at my local Cycle Gear. With less variety. I only found 2 items that warrent further investigation. The Klim Outlander boot, and the new Abel Brown lean-to style motorcycle tent.

Bike Tent
CampingTriangle1.jpg
Knowing my penchant for overpacking, I've been toying with the idea of really paring down everything and keeping it super simple. Tarp camping is one possibility that keeps poping up in web searches, so when I found this lean-to tent, I really thought it was a great design - large enough for a person, plus their gear. I like the idea of the motorcycle being the "tent pole". And since it's free-standing, it packs down really small.

Short Boots
OutlanderCombo.jpg
The Klim Outlander boots are short enough to fit, but rigid enough to protect. The smallest size is 7, but those actually fit fairly well. Wouldn't want to go hiking in them, but they would be good for a short walk.

And that's it. That was the show for me in a nutshell. The rest of the weekend was spent in Alexandria and looking through museums at the National Mall. Hope everyone had a great weekend!
 

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Great report, nicely done Luv!! :D
 
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Luv Not

Very good report and effort. I went to Washington show back around 2009 and there was some manufacturers missing then too. I think I fell in love with the Ural Patrol back then, now I barely think about it.

Back around 1996 and so on, the International shows at Daytona Speedway and down by the beach were off the chart with products, all manufacturers, and bike road tests. Back then felt like modern times and motorcycle seemed to be craved by the public of all age brackets. Time slips away and motorcycles don't seem as main stream although I think the selection of models have all gotten much better. Except Suzuki which I did love but they can't afford to keep up. Regardless of what they put out their magic is long gone and dated. What's crazy is after chasing and buying high-end bikes from Aprilia/Ducati the simple DR400 from Suzuki I like.
 
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