S&S Cycle attended the 2013 V-Twin Dealer Expo in Cincinnati, Ohio on Feb. 2nd and 3rd. The dealer expo in Cincinnati is a time-honored tradition in the motorcycle industry going back to the 1970s. It’s a kind of a rite of spring that signals that the riding season is about to commence. The weather was anything but spring like, with snow, high winds, and freezing temperatures, but that didn’t dampen the enthusiasm of the exhibitors or the dealers who come from all over the world to see the latest, up to datest products for Harley-Davidson® motorcycles and other American v-twins.
As a side note, Saturday, Feb. 2nd was groundhog day, and Punxsutawney Phil, the famous weather forecasting groundhog in Punxsutawney, PA did not see his shadow. So according to Groundhogologists who specialize in groundhog lore, we should have an early spring. That means an early riding season. We believe it because the prediction was backed up by our own Jimmy the groundhog in Sun Prairie, WI.
Among the new products released at the show, one that generated the biggest buzz was the new S&S® Lubricants product release. The S&S Lubricants line includes both full synthetic and petroleum based engine oil and transmission oil, as well as an extreme duty primary oil. Other popular products were the Viola V-Twin™ service parts offering, the new 883 to 1200 conversion kit for 1986-present 883 Sportster® models, the Power Tune Sport exhaust system for 2004 and later Sportster models, the 4” Race/Tour mufflers for 1995 and later baggers, S&S Premium Tappets for 1999-later big twins and 2002-later Sportster models, Throttle Hog big bore throttle bodies for 2008-up baggers and other models with electronic throttle control (AKA throttle-by-wire), and the improved B2 cylinder heads that now accept a two-bolt exhaust flange and can be adapted to stock exhaust headers. Another service that was well greeted with some excitement was the new S&S Service & Speed Center™ (SSC). The SSC is a service that S&S provides to S&S dealers which includes engine remanufacturing, performance upgrades to stock Harley-Davidson® engines, machine shop services, and custom engine building.
As usual, the S&S and Crane Cams® booths were very busy, talking with shop owners who were eager to learn about the latest S&S products for the coming season. In addition, S&S Cycle Sales Manager Shane Whitty presented two seminars on new S&S products and S&S Cycle Product Manager Jeremy Gilbert was a guest on a panel discussion called “From The Track To The Show Floor”, to talk about how racing can help generate sales in your business.
The V-Twin Expo is a dealer only show, which means that the general public can’t get in, but S&S attends all the International Motorcycle Shows (IMS) and most of the major rallies. So if you’re not an S&S dealer and you want to see all these new goodies for yourself, take a look at our events schedule on the S&S website and see when we’ll be at a show near you.
We’re also very proud to announce that our own George B. Smith, son of S&S company founder George J. Smith, was presented with a Lifetime Achievement Award from V-Twin Magazine at an awards ceremony on Saturday evening after the Expo. George is responsible for many of S&S Cycle’s innovations and accomplishments since he took over as company president after the tragic death of his father in 1980. Those accomplishments are in both product development and racing. George has since retired as company president, but he remains chairman of the S&S Board of Directors. George could not be on hand to accept the award due to a prior commitment, so the award was accepted in his stead by current S&S company president Steve Iggens. Steve was accompanied on stage by the entire S&S show crew because George wanted to recognize that without the dedication and hard work of the S&S employees, he would not have been able to make it all happen. In his written acceptance, which was read by Steve Iggens, George recognized a number of S&S employees who had been with the company for over 25 years, some in excess of 40 years.
Flathead Power/ S&S Cycle attended the AMCA National Swapment in Oley PA, hosted by the Perkiomen Chapter, April 27-29th 2012. AMCA events like the Perkiomen Swapmeet have long been a great place to network with fellow vintage enthusiasts as well as get the word out on new and existing S&S products under the Flathead Power Brand. Flathead Power founder Anders Nygren used the same venues to display and sell his wares, and this year, following the recent release of an American Iron magazine article, Flathead Power debuted the Anders Nygren Signature Series 93” Knuckle Engine, and what better place to honor the man that got Flathead Power going, than a National AMCA Meet?
Flathead Power road crew members, Eric Wangen & Kayle Pauling left for Oley PA on Tuesday, April 24th for the 2 day drive to East Central Pennsylvania. A day before we left, we saw on the news that most of PA was hit by a late snow storm, depositing as much as 13 inches in some areas, but a day later when we went thru, just a trace amount of snow in the higher elevations was the only evidence to be seen. Other than a near miss by a kamikaze turkey outside Boaz WI and an “over the cab” car hauler in western PA who suddenly felt he needed both lanes in a construction zone before he fully passed the our truck and trailer, the trip out was pretty uneventful. On Wednesday we made a stop to visit S&S/Flathead Power Dealer Paul Friebus at American Cycle Fab in Bloomsburg PA to see some of the skunkworks that goes into Bonneville racing a flathead motorcycle, sorry we didn’t take any pics there, but trust me, Paul is a record setter for a reason!
Thursday is considered a setup day at most all of the AMCA Swapmeets and is not open to the public, but there is still a lot of people for booth traffic as the other vendors take a chance to see what everyone has brought into the show in hopes they might find that hard sought after item they need or they think they can turn a bit of profit on. We’ve found that if you can get to the meet as it opens on Thursday, dropping the trailer and setting up is way easier if you can get in long before your neighbors arrive. With new display materials, we got setup in short order, and were busy most all day Thursday.
Now some may not know this, but S&S holds a strict policy that we won’t sell retail and compete with our dealers, so linking up with one of our dealers at these events allows us to bring along some select parts to sell thru the dealer in attendance, in this case we had WayBack Wheels from Portsmouth New Hampshire in the very next row. We brought some seconds and blem parts to sell along with some select firsts. Fully functional, seconds and blems can be pretty good deals if you don’t mind a bent or a small broken fin or other defect that inadvertently makes it thru the machining process but would not be a sellable item at MSRP. We get people looking for mock up parts, parts they want to try some modification on or with a little work, repair the fin or other blem feature and run the parts. We even had a guy that wanted to take a blem knuckle housing and make a beer tapper handle. The only way to get in on these rare second and blem parts deals is by attending one of these meets where the flaws can be seen handled and explained face to face by our road crew. (All blems and seconds are marked and are sold as is, and not under any kind of warranty)
Our UL/WLA Hybrid military display bike featured on our Facebook page was also a big hit for the people in attendance and the road crew who took it out for a spin around the grounds every couple of hours. We didn’t keep count, but I bet it was one of the most photographed bikes at the meet. Sporting our UL cylinders, heads, lifters and kicker cover, the bike was a great way to showcase parts and our commitment to the vintage market.
Friday was cold, overcast and extremely windy, at a few points in the day the guys were holding down the tents while talking to customers, almost like being in a day long bank hold up. The cold and wind did'nt deter too many from venturing out to find their parts, attendance and booth traffic remained pretty steady.
Saturday weather was fully cooperative, and the booth traffic was very steady right up to the close of the show as most vendors pack up and leave Saturday night. A side story about some of the pictures below, about mid afternoon Saturday, one of our neighbors was getting all packed up for his drive back, accidentally locked his key in his truck. With his spare set at the other end of the state, he was ready to break his back window to gain entry. Not wanting to see that happen, crew member Kayle Pauling stepped up and after about 20 minutes of work, was able to fish a coat hook in and bump the electric lock. Now that’s customer service!
Our next show is at the National Motorcycle Museum in Anamosa Iowa, and we may be adding another AMCA meet in Wauseon in July, we’ll keep you posted, or check us out on Facebook for more Flathead Power road tour events.
Bruce and Justin from S&S visited the Power Sports Institute
, a division of the Ohio Technical College, in Cleveland Ohio to observe an S&S Dealer Training Class
. This session was the Sidewinder training class, which deals with the mechanical aspects of servicing S&S engines. The focus of the class was the S&S V-Series and T-Series engines for 1984 – 2006 Harley-Davidson big twins, and numerous S&S Hot Set Up Kit® configurations for 1984 – 2011 big twins. This class is only available to S&S dealers
The purpose of these classes is to get technicians who work in S&S dealerships up to speed on the special care and feeding of S&S engines and S&S modified Harley-Davidson® engines such as those that contain an S&S Hot Set Up Kit. Each participant in the class is required to tear down, measure and reassemble an S&S V-Series engine
and either an S&S T-Series engine
or a Hot Set Up Kit modified Harley-Davidson Twin Cam 88® or 96 engine. In the process they learned not only the techniques, but the how's and why's of the S&S components and the engines that contain them.
The students in the class ranged from seasoned technicians to near entry-level technicians. Regardless of the level of experience, all participants of the class learned a lot. In the case of the less experienced students, it was an eye opening introduction not only to basic engine building and maintenance techniques, but an insight into the difference between stock and performance motorcycle engines
. For the old pro's, it was a chance to hone their skills and find ways to do their jobs better. Nobody walked away from the class without a head full of newly acquired ideas and solid v-twin performance
knowledge, regardless of how much they knew before the class.
The fact is that S&S engines and S&S modified stock engines are different from stock Harley® engines. That's why they're faster. With that fact in mind, it should be pretty reasonable to conclude that they need a little different approach when you have one in the shop. Making more power isn't just about increased displacement, although that's a pretty good way to go. It also has to do with cylinder head flow, ignition timing, cam specifications, carb tuning
, and a lot of other considerations that generally are not even a concern to the mechanic who works to the maintain stock function of a Harley-Davidson motorcycle. Modifying an engine for more performance takes more knowledge and the ability to think outside the box. Related: Students from PSI's Dealer Training Build Bike for AMD Championship
"We don't just want these guys to be parts-changers!" Says PSI campus director Bernie Thompson. "They need to be able to think about what they're doing and make the right calls when confronted with the special problems of high performance work." V-Twin Education Manager Ron Radeke adds "To receive the S&S Sidewinder
certificate, students have to do the work and pass the tests. Without these strict requirements, the certificate wouldn't mean much. This way you know that any technician who holds a Sidewinder certificate from PSI is the real deal. They've earned it!"
Bernie adds "To go along with that, we have a separate v-twin course here at PSI where we not only teach our students how to service Harley-Davidson® and other v-twins, but we give the students the opportunity to build a custom bike from scratch. This year we used an S&S engine and our bike took 8th
place at the AMD World Championship of Custom Bike Building event in Sturgis." Click here to see the bike!
A cool chance meeting occurred when we discovered that the technicians from Gateway Big Dog, who sent us the picture and dyno chart featured in an earlier S&S Performance Times Blog
were taking the class when we were there. Other participants included two brothers from a new shop in Australia called Karbo Kustoms, and two guys from Lowbrow Customs, one of the sponsors of the recent Knuckle Shuffle
in nearby Yuba, WI. See our Road Tour Blog entry here
Dealer training is something that is pretty unique in the high performance industry, and S&S is committed to making sure that our dealers can back up the great reputation that S&S products have with performance enthusiasts all over the world.
If you are interested in attending S&S Dealer training, visit our site for more information
and this year's class schedule
. If you would like to become an S&S Dealer, or learn why partnering with S&S is great for your business, visit our Become an S&S Dealer
page on our site.
Damn The Economy, Full Speed Ahead!
Every year S&S goes to the Black Hills Rally in Sturgis South Dakota to show off our new stuff and to have a good time. We were located right downtown on Lazelle Street. That’s smack dab in the middle of the action, and traffic at the S&S trailer was phenomenal. It looks like even in a down economy, our customers put the yearly pilgrimage to the best known rally in the country, pretty high on their priority list.
As usual the S&S crew was on hand to talk to customers - answering questions about our products and giving out tech advice. Anything from carburetor jetting to engine building tips. Of course most people visiting the S&S display trailer were looking for ways to make their Harley® faster. That's easy because we have a lot of ways to do just that. S&S offers go fast parts for 1930 to present big twins and 1957 to present Sportster models, so we have performance solutions for just about any bike and for just about any budget, anything from a performance air cleaner to a complete motorcycle engine.
As usual the S&S 4-Step Performance Program generated a lot of interest because you can achieve your performance goals in easy steps instead of writing out one big honkin' check for the whole works at once. Of particular interest are the S&S exhaust products for baggers. A complete line of slip on mufflers and the S&S Power Tune Dual header pipes. With a bike on hand equipped with both, you could actually see them and hear what they sound like
Don't tell anyone, but we were also previewing a new series of air cleaners that will be released later this year. We can't disclose any details yet, so you'll just have to ask someone who was there!
S&S did not sell anything at the rally, but if you saw an S&S product that really trips your trigger, you can still get it right away. J&P Cycles had a store just down the street from our location, and Speeds Performance Plus had a mobile shop and dyno right in Sturgis, where they did S&S installs and show you the dyno results in one go. How cool is that? (Watch the opening video below to see Speed's in action)
If you wanted to think about it and get your new S&S parts after you got home, you can always order it from your local S&S dealer. Don't know who or where your local dealer is? Check our dealer locator and find out in a hurry.
Of course it wasn't all business. When in Sturgis, do as the Sturgians do. That means S&S Night at the Broken Spoke Saloon, on Lazelle Street. A good time was definitely had by all. Food, music, burnouts, and one lucky guy, Dan "Z", walked away with a free S&S engine! Watch the videos below and see the action!
S&S Night at the Broken Spoke Saloon
Final Days / Heading Home
Random Burnout at the Spoke... just because.
Anders Nygren, founder of the original Flathead Power company in Sweden, recently visited S&S Cycle. He was accompanied by his son Magnus and freelance magazine writer and knucklehead enthusiast, John Endrizzi. John was along to do research for a magazine article on Flathead Power and S&S Cycle.
Anders started Flathead Power in Sweden in the early 1990's as a way to get parts to fix his own engines. The business grew to be known for their quality parts for vintage motorcycles. To take advantage of reduced shipping costs and access to the larger American vintage motorcycle market, Anders partnered with some American backers and the company moved to Morgan City, Louisiana. The move turned out to be ill fated and Anders was forced to leave the company and returned to Sweden.
S&S Cycle Inc acquired the Flathead Power brand name, intellectual property, tooling and remaining inventory in July of 2007. At the time that transaction occurred, Anders had already gone back to Sweden.
Mr. Nygren was in the States for a about a week, during which he was visiting relatives, touching base with old friends, and buying parts for his hot rod Chevy truck that his son drag races back home in Sweden. We were really happy that he was able to fit in a visit to S&S Cycle. After all, our location is a little out of the way. If you end up in Viola, Wisconsin, either you really want to be there, or you're really lost!
After touring the S&S facility, the whole crew met in Richland Center for dinner to give Anders a send off before he and his son drove back to Chicago. Left to right: John Endrizzi (in an exceptional shirt), Magnus Nygren, Eric Wangen, Anders Nygren, and Bruce Tessmer.
Anders toured the S&S museum and manufacturing facility, which has changed tremendously since he was last here in 2003, as far as any of us can recollect. He was particularly interested in how S&S machines the parts and assembles the KN series engines. Flathead Power Product line manager Eric Wangen, and Marketing Manager Bruce Tessmer served as tour guides and hosts for the visit. While Anders was here we shot a video interview, which you can see here in the blog.
In this video interview, Anders Nygren, founder of Flathead Power in Sweden talks about how he got started in the vintage motorcycle parts business and how he ended up leaving the company.
Here we are, looking down the barrel of another year at Sturgis. This year we are going to bring some firepower of our own and one lucky person is going to come home from the Broken Spoke Saloon
(downtown) with a brand new, 1 of a kind, V113 engine made by yours truly, S&S Cycle.
Mark your calendar and set yourself a reminder to be at the Broken Spoke on Wednesday, August 10th
for this year's S&S Night. The giveaway starts at 9pm
but be sure to get there early. The only catch is your presence is required to be eligible to win. That's it.
"What sort of engine are we talking about here?" Well I'm glad you asked. It's the V113, replacement engine for Evolution
® big twins. The V113 yields a broad torque curve while maintaining excellent reliability, making it a great engine for any Evolution® equipped big twin. But this one is NOT the average V113 though. This engine is 1 of a kind, in a black finish not offered in our usual lineup. Another special feature is this one comes with the Tuned Induction System
that has nearly twice the filtering area as our teardrop air cleaner. Normally this engine, depending on options, retails for about $7,650.00. Not a bad haul for coming to party with us at the Spoke!FITMENT
FEATURES AND BENEFITS
- 1984–’99 carbureted chassis
- Custom chassis designed for Evolution® engines
- Shorter than stock height engine makes installation easy
- S&S Super G carburetor with tuned induction system
- S&S® Super Stock® ignition system
- black finish
| S&S V113 Engine Specifications
|| S&S forged
So we hope to see you front and center at the Broken Spoke Saloon, downtown Sturgis at 9pm (or sooner), Wednesday Aug 10th for the S&S Night and engine giveway! Good times will be had by all.
Just recently, S&S had a visitor. Unlike many of the visitors we get who ride in on their motorcycles, Milo brought something much more unique. Milo and Joni Anderson were touring the US once again and attending the Rolling Thunder run to support our veterans. On their tour, they stopped by our headquarters and we had a chance to talk with Milo and Joni about the work-in-progress that is Milo's rat bike. The video below will get you a close up look at all the detail of Milo's rat bike.
This bad a$$ one-of-a-kind Brass Balls Chopper wants to go home with YOU! This machine is powered by the high performance of an S&S® / Flathead Power® SH93 engine – vintage style with modern muscle. If you are going to Daytona Bike Week (March 4-13, 2011), come visit us! We will be located at the Daytona International Speedway.
1884 TICKETS HAVE BEEN SOLD AS OF 2/16/2011
Each year, the Daytona Regional Chamber of Commerce holds a drawing for the Official Bike Week Motorcycle. Since there are only 4500 tickets printed, the odds to being a winner is incredible. In addition to the Grand Prize, there are 10 additional runner up prizes valued at $200. Not only is this custom motorcycle valued at $35,000 but it is a collector’s item. It is the only Official Bike Week Motorcycle for 2011. Click Here for more information and how to enter.
Unlike other Bike Drawings, what makes this Bike Drawing Unique are the following:
- LIMITED TICKETS PRINTED - Only 4,500 tickets printed - 4500 is the maximum that can be sold - the odds are great.
- How Much is it to Enter? $50 for each Official Certificate to enter the drawing. Instead of selling 100,000 or more tickets to win a motorcycle at $5 or so a ticket, we instead limit the drawing to 4500 entrants at $50 a ticket, so you have a better chance of winning.
- 2011 Official Bike Week Motorcycle - Not only is this a great bike valued at $35,000, it's also A ONE OF A KIND.
- American Iron Magazine features the complete build, from frame to finished masterpiece.
- Tax Deductible - Major Fund Raiser facilitated by the Daytona Beach Community Foundation with proceeds going back into the management and betterment of each bike week event.
- 8 Runner Up Prizes - all worth $200 or more
Come visit S&S® Cycle, Flathead Power®, Crane Cams® and Mobil 1® at the Daytona International Speedway, March 4-13, 2011. And good luck to all entrants!
S&S® CYCLE WILL SEE YOU AT THE PROGRESSIVE® INTERNATIONAL MOTORCYCLE SHOW® IN CHICAGO
Don't miss S&S® Cycle at the Progressive International Motorcycle Show (IMS) in Chicago, IL this weekend. The show will be held in the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center in the Village of Rosemont, and runs from Friday Feb. 11 through Sunday Feb 13. Here's your chance to see all the new S&S, Flathead Power® and Crane Cams® products for your Harley-Davidson® motorcycle, no matter if your bike is vintage, custom, or a late model stocker. Another bonus is that two of our tech guys will be on hand to answer your questions, and show you how you can make your ride a lot faster.
The S&S 4-Step Performance products will all be on display so you can see for yourself what the buzz is about. The S&S 4-Step Performance Program is a roadmap to better performance, that you can take one step at a time as your budget allows or as your passion for speed demands. Get up to speed at your own speed!
The 4-Step Performance Program includes S&S Cycle's high performance exhaust products. Don't miss the opportunity to see the newly redesigned S&S SPO® touring mufflers and the all-new Power Tune duals – up close and personal. Want to know what S&S slip-on mufflers sound like? Check out the S&S interactive exhaust touch-screen video kiosk. Not only can you see photos of these slip-on mufflers installed, you will be able to hear actual sound recordings of the mufflers in action. They look great and they sound great, and we want you to know it.
S&S Cycle is the primary distributor of Crane Cams motorcycle products, and all the old favorite Crane products will be on display, along with two new Crane ignitions, a new set of cams for 2007 and later Harley-Davidson big twins, and the newly released Time Saver pushrod kits for shovelhead engines.
Vintage fans will love the new products from Flathead Power. The new KN-Kone engine, recently awarded "Engine of the Year" by V-Twin magazine, the new KN-74 engine, replacement vintage kicker covers, 80" UL flathead cylinders, and more.
For more information about the IMS show in Chicago and dates for other IMS shows, click on the IMS website at http://www.motorcycleshows.com/Chicago
Just in case you can't make it this weekend, here are some other shows that S&S will be attending this year.
|Feb. 25-27, 2011
||International MC Show
|Mar. 4-13, 2011
||Daytona Bike Week
||Daytona Beach, FL
| Mar. 26-27, 2011
||Donnie Smith Bike Show
|May 13-22, 2011
||Myrtle Beach Bike Week
||Myrtle Beach, SC
|May 28-29, 2011
||South Texas Biker Jam & Expo
|June 9-12, 2011
|June 11-19, 2011
||Laconia Bike Week
|June 25-26, 2011
||J&P Cycles Open House
|Aug. 8-14, 2011
|Sep. 1-4, 2011
||Antique MC Club of America
Bruce Tessmer moves the bike into position
S&S is on the road again doing photo shoots for our next new ad campaign. Marketing manager Bruce Tessmer flew to Phoenix AZ to meet up with Wally Cahill of G2G Productions
. The first stop was to see John Scott
of Average Joe's Motorcycle Service
John Scott installs the SPO mufflers
John's role in the program was to help find some local bikes and riders for the shoot. We had a bike lined up that Wally was using for a video about the S&S 4-Step program, but we couldn't get a hold of the owner. Seems he was out riding. Unlike Wisconsin, Arizona has beautiful weather in November, and who can blame the guy for being in the wind. So we needed another bike. Scott lined up a 2009 bagger and we put an S&S air cleaner and the new S&S SPO® mufflers on it. This was the first time John had seen the new SPO mufflers close up, and he was really impressed with them and how easy it was to install the teardrop air cleaner kit. When they fired up the bike, he was also pleased by the way the SPO's sound.
Once we had the bike set up, we proceeded to Black Magic Motor Sports in Tempe, AZ to pick up Wally's trailer and talk with Skip Taylor, who was also helping to line up some local riders for the shoot.
We then hit the road for Sedona to meet with our photographer Randall Bohl, to shoot the bike against some scenic backgrounds. Due to the higher elevation, the weather in Sedona was a little cooler than in Phoenix and we had clear skies and temperatures in the mid 80's. It's a tough job, but somebody has to do it!
We ended up at the Sedona airport, which is up on top of a mesa, and affords a spectacular view.
Randal and Wally at the airport
We got there just before sunset to catch the light and get a very cool effect. By the way, the area around Sedona is believed by many to be a "spiritual vortex" and UFO sightings are said to be common. The mesa behind Randall and Wally in the photo, supposedly is a landing spot for extraterrestrial visitors. (they apparently have their own airport).
Tomorrow we are off to scout some more locations and do some more shooting.