View Full Version : News: Some after-market motorcycle parts don’t meet safety or environmental standards

Gas Man
06-01-2012, 02:50 AM
Some after-market motorcycle parts don’t meet safety or environmental standards, experts say (http://www.washingtonpost.com/investigations/some-after-market-motorcycle-parts-dont-meet-safety-or-environmental-standards-experts-say/2012/05/26/gJQAgQezsU_story.html)

By Debbie Cenziper (http://www.twowheelmichigan.com/debbie-cenziper/2011/03/01/ABQp4sM_page.html), Published: May 26The Washington Post
HAMERSVILLE, Ohio — The first dollar Rick Doyle ever earned as a $3 million-a-year dealer of after-market motorcycle parts is tacked to the wall of a dusty barn in rural Ohio, where two custom-built bikes have been pushed to the corner, forgotten. There is nothing here now except a 10-year-old tractor. The biker calendar above the desk still reads February 2006.
That’s about when Doyle made an unsettling discovery about an industry that for decades catered to motorcyclists who pride themselves on customizing bikes with unique features and high-powered parts.

Some of the products that Doyle had sold by the thousands — from undersize mirrors and lights to high-performance carburetors — appeared to violate federal standards meant to keep the roads safe and the air clear of excessive emissions. Other parts that showed signs of being dangerous weren’t covered by any standard at all.

Doyle started researching the fine print of federal law after a series of after-market parts broke while he was customizing bikes. He was also engaged in a dispute over shipping and billing with one of his biggest parts suppliers.

“I felt like my chest had a piano on it when I realized the number of products I had sold, as well as countless ignorant dealers,” said Doyle, whose business, known as the Hog Farm, is now shuttered. “But no one wanted to hear it. No one wanted to investigate it. The government was letting these companies sell anything they wanted.”

From the hard-core to the weekend enthusiast, motorcyclists for generations have customized bikes by replacing manufacturer’s parts with high-
performance exhausts, larger carburetors and sleeker mirrors, lights and turn signals. The practice has vaulted into the forefront of pop culture with celebrities like Jesse James and reality shows such as “American Chopper.” Customized bikes will be on display in the District this weekend when hundreds of thousands of riders take part in the 25th annual Rolling Thunder motorcycle tribute (http://rollingthunderrun.com/) to prisoners of war and troops missing in action.

But many after-market parts sold in plain sight online and in catalogues fail to comply with federal safety standards or the Clean Air Act, according to safety and environmental experts contacted by The Washington Post. Other parts not covered by standards are widely considered dangerous, such as passenger seats stuck to motorcycles with suction cups.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (http://www.nhtsa.gov/)and the Environmental Protection Agency (http://www.epa.gov/)regulate the industry but struggle with limited budgets and resistance from some parts of the motorcycle industry. The laws themselves can be confusing, with nuances that make oversight difficult.

Parts installed on bikes used solely for competition, for example, are exempted from Clean Air standards. Parts that fail to comply with federal safety standards, such as undersize mirrors and lights, could be used legally to supplement standard equipment.

“I could probably go online and look at a catalogue and buy a variety of things that may put my motorcycle out of compliance,” said Peter terHorst, spokesman for the American Motorcyclist Association (http://www.americanmotorcyclist.com/). “The question in my mind is: Does the requirement apply to the manufacturer or to the operator of the vehicle? It’s a slippery slope.”

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What do you think?

06-01-2012, 09:50 AM
I'll file this one under "having solved all other problems...". Thank heaven these agencies dont have enough money to further invade our lives. Did you notice that you can no longer buy large sodas in NYC? Its madness.

Gas Man
06-01-2012, 11:05 AM
Yeah it's the more laws crap IMO

Mad Dog
06-01-2012, 10:07 PM
Can't Supersize In NYC?????Damn!

06-02-2012, 05:17 PM
kind of a no brainer really.... like nobody knew? more like nobody cares !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
what a waste of time and money

Gas Man
06-03-2012, 02:01 AM
I'm with ya Jon.

06-03-2012, 02:08 AM
Christ on a V8 powered pogo stick... More damn idiots confusing arm flailing for progress.. Chain the lawyers & politicians together and toss them over board at the Challenger Deep (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Challenger_Deep)w/ a pair of good ol' Chicago cement loafers.

Gas Man
06-03-2012, 11:36 AM
I like the way you think nobody!