Take me home, El Capitan!

"Gather 'round, lads.... gather 'round"...
Burt Lancaster / The Crimson Pirate (1952)

Around the 1st or 15th of each month, when I deem you are worthy, we put out our cheesy newsletter to inform the masses as to what's happening in the BMW world and of course... Pirates' Lair. How else are you going to find out?

If you want to subscribe and have these sent via e-mail to your home or office just let us know at pirate@acelink.net .. otherwise you'll get 95% of it here. Why only 95%? Because I tend to tell the brutal truth as I see it on many issues/products and while I don't mind spewing "my opinion" into your home, office or cell, I have no desire to slam, insult, or malign any company, individual, competitor in public.. unless they blatantly deserve it.

While I do try to add a little humor in every newsletter, some of my language may offend the mild mannered, politically correct, liberal, or meek amongst us. If you are offended easily I suggest you stop reading here and look elsewhere for your written info-tainment. So it is written.. so let it be done....

Prepare to be boarded!

The Latest Cheesy Pirates' Lair Newsletter: January / February 2013 Issue : Happy Freakin' New Year!

Fellow esteemed and quasi-esteemed motorcyclists.... ..A famous (and slightly edited ) movie moment to start the month.....

Dr. Frederick Frankenstein has inherited his family's estate in Transylvania after the death of his great grandfather, the Baron von Frankenstein. He's just arrived and is settling in for his first night in the dark castle. The forbidding housekeeper Frau Blücher enters his room...

Frau Blücher: Would the doctor care for a... brandy before retiring?
Dr. Frederick Frankenstein: No. Thank you.
Frau Blücher: [suggestively] Some varm milk... perhaps?
Dr. Frederick Frankenstein: No... thank you very much. No thanks.
Frau Blücher: The latest Cheesy Pirates Lair Newsletter?
Dr. Frederick Frankenstein: No... Not now. 
Frau Blücher: [suggestively] Ovaltine?
Dr. Frederick Frankenstein: NOTHING! Thank you! I'm a little - tired!
Frau Blücher: Then I vill say... goodnight, Herr Doctor.
Dr. Frederick Frankenstein: Goodnight, Frau Blücher.
[horses whinny]

Dr. Frankenstein...Gene Wilder / Frau Blücher...Cloris Leachman / Young Frankenstein (1974)

News and Feltercarb From The Two-Wheeled No-Spin Zone...!!

Picture Of The Month! Austrian Beauty! (Click Image for a Larger View)

Every month customers send us killer photos and I see no reason to keep them to myself so what better way to say thanks for sharing than to post them in this Picture of the Month spot..

Our Jan/Feb POTM was contributed by James Willis of East Sussex, United Kingdom . He says of the shot... "This pic was taken near Fussen in Austria on the B17. I took this picture with a Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ6 pocket camera. I am by no stretch of the imagination a photographer, however this camera makes great shots easy as it has an "iA" (auto intelligence) setting which allows you to just point and shoot. The picture was taken in early May 2012 after a biking holiday in Germany's Black Forest with a load of mates. I extended the trip by a week and instead of going home back to England I rode on solo from Germany through to Austria (after a slight detour through Switzerland), taking pics and exploring back roads on the way. I took a few routes from a book called "Motorcycle Journeys Through Western Europe" by Toby Ballentine and created waypoint routes with my satnav following the details described in the book under "The Famous Alpine Road and Sound of Music Tour."

If you would like to contribute your own"worthy" shot for our newsletter, here's what I'll need. First.. just email me 1 or 2 of your best digital shots. It'll need to be at least 1024x768 in size or larger and preferably A. Of a BMW K1200S, K1300S, K1200RS, K1200R, R Sport, S1000RR, K1600GT, GTL, or any model year K1200GT or K1300GT and B. In focus.

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BMW S1000RR Recall Notice : Kickstand Issue

BMW Motorrad has recalled 2,385 of its S1000RR superbikes due to kickstand issues.

BMW says due to a manufacturing fault, the S1000RR motorcycles, which were manufactured from September 2011 through December 2012, the side-stand attachment bolts can loosen. The loosening of the side-stand bolts could cause the stand to separate from the frame of the motorcycle, increasing the risk of crash. Here's another link to some info on this... Click Here.

BMW will notify owners, and dealers will clean the side-stand mounting plate threads and replace the side-stand mounting plate bolts, free of charge. The recall is expected to begin in January 2013. Owners may call BMW at 1-800-525-7417 or email BMW at CustomerRelations@bmwusa.com.

Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or visit safercar.gov. NHTSA Campaign ID Number: 12V585000

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Product Review: Tour Master Synergy 2.0 Heated Vest Liner With Collar

I've been wearing a Widder Electric vest for the last 12 years and would be wearing it today if it hadn't mysteriously started getting smaller over the last season or two. I'll assume this phenomenon was the result of a gravitational shift at the earth's core. While the vest is a size 40 and I still wear a size 40 jacket, the Widder was feeling like a girdle.. so what to do?.. Rather than whipping myself into fighting shape which would mean purchasing an expensive gym membership and work-out clothing.. not to mention gas and drive time to the gym for a few months... I chose a cheaper, less sweaty route. I sold my old Widder and bought a larger vest.

After the prerequisite anal research I chose the well reviewed Tour Master Synergy 2.0 Heated Vest. The size small fit me perfectly. I know what you are thinking.. Yes.. I looked at the Gerbing options first, but chose the Tour Master over it for one simple, non-technical reason. It has expanding side panels. I could be wrong, but I'm gonna bet that this 57 year old body may do more expanding over the next decade so the expanding panels would seem logical. Price was about the same. Decision made. Done deal. I ordered mine through my favorite source.. Motorcycle-Superstore.com and had it in my hands within a week. *Part numbers and prices below.

The Tour Master Synergy 2.0 Heated Vest Liner is heated by a series of durable steel fiber heating elements which generate safe, electronically controlled infrared heat. According to their website, the steel fiber elements are lightweight, flexible and safe to operate in wet conditions although the thought of wearing something wet with current surging through it kinda freaks me out. Each liner also features a temperature sensor which allows your vest to remain at a set temperature for the duration of a ride. They advertise.. "No Hot Spots" and as best as I can tell.. that seems to be the case. The heat feels uniform throughout.. including in the collar. Sweet. This temperature sensor also serves as an emergency backup should your jacket get too hot. Combined with the 15A built in fuse in the wiring harness, you can ride in confidence knowing you are safe from self-immolation or spontaneous combustion.

Tour Master Synergy 2.0 Heated Vest Liner With Collar

Comfort: I've used the vest 4 times prior to this review and I'm damn happy with the choice. The vest is supremely comfortable and kept me toasty. The controller has 5 settings I've never had to turn mine higher than 3 to stay perfectly warm. It's very lightweight and flexible and doesn't add bulk when wearing under your leathers. The soft material feels much better than the stiff material of the Widder. Warm up time is literally 50% faster than my old Widder vest. The Synergy vest is both comfy and light weight.

Complaints: I do have 2 minor complaints. The vest comes standard with a DUAL temperature controller which I didn't want. I'll be using my vest solo with no optional gear (ie.. heated gloves, pants, penis warmer, etc) so why would I want the large controller? I called Tour Master prior to the purchase and asked if I could buy the vest with the smaller solo controller and they flat out said.. "No.. that is available only as an option." WTF!? A $40 option as it turns out. Ouch! Secondly.. while the power cord that comes out of the vest is a perfect length hanging from underneath the vest by about 2"... once the controller is plugged into the vest with the optional BMW Socket adapter plugged into that.. (another $12 option) the wiring and cord are waaay too long.. about 3 feet too long. Drag the ground long. That's a lot of freakin' cord. With every vest sold, Tour Master includes a Velcro strap that can be secured around the rider's thigh that you can clip the controller and excess wiring to, but I didn't use it. Instead I folded up all the excess wiring and zip-tied it to the back of the controller. Not ideal, but this way I can have my preferred cord length with the controller at my fingertips. Accessible without taking my eyes off the road.. Minor issues solved.

Between the foo foo high-tech heating fabric, the furnished built-in temperature controller, and the competitive price.. the Tour Master Synergy 2.0 Heated vest is certainly worthy of a look. Whether you're shopping for your first heated vest or replacing an old one that may or may not be shrinking due to the planet-wide gravitational shift.

* Tour Master Synergy 2.0 Heated Vest Liner With Collar -#370158 / $179.99, Tour Master Synergy Single Rheostat Controller- #370201 / $32.39, Tour Master Synergy BMW Socket Adapter- #140405 / $9.89

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Pirates Lair... It's Official!!! We're The New US Laser Exhaust Distributor!

For those of you that missed last months action packed, cheese-filled newsletter... I had announced to the world that Pirates Lair is now the new US importer of Laser Exhausts!! As of today we've worked out the final details with the manufacturer, arranged international shipping (with UPS,) and already placed our first order. Woohoo! As you can imagine.. we're stoked. This may be the deal we needed to help us survive 4 more years of Obamanomics.

I'm especially excited that we'll finally be offering the Stealth Laser HotCam 2 systems. (pic of Ti version at right) FYI.. we get more requests for those than any other exhaust and for good reason. IMHO.. they're the best looking and the best sounding. They'll be available for most bikes in Carbon Fiber, Titanium, and Stainless steel. There's also a "shortie" version for the K1300S. Sweet! The K16 version is absolutely beautiful, too! Each canister comes with a removable silencer and optional Laser sticker logo. Use it or not. Laser also offers the standard tri-oval HotCam, and the traditional oval canister designated DuoTech.

While at some point we'll carry their entire product line for all brand motorcycles.. we'll begin with the BMW K1600GT / K1600GTL, the BMW K1300S / K1300R, the BMW K1200S / K1200R and the BMW S1000RR. FYI.. our first incoming shipment will include slip-ons for both the BMW K1200S and K1300S.. Call for availability...

Spread the word. Thanks, Clarence.

Titanium Laser HotCam 2!
The HotCam 2
The HotCam
Laser Stealth HotCam2 "Shortie" on K1300S
K1600 HotCam 2

What's New In the K12 / K13 / K16 / S1000RR No-Spin Zone

I should note that as the K1200RS and first generation K1200GT have been discontinued, I receive less and less news of any new products for them.. I mention this as a few semi-loyal subscribers have accused me of abandoning our roots.. Not true.. I only report what's going on.. Don't shoot the messenger.. I will NEVER abandon the K1200RS crowd. It appears that the times.. they are a changin.' Deal with it. Also.. a special thx to www.I-BMW.com, www.K-Bikes.com , and www.BMWK1200S.com for the information & pictures I regularly pilfer from these sites..

1. Any of my fellow track-day junkies who've muscled a bike into a corner at speed knows that getting rid of un-sprung weight can and does make a difference. The Slovenian company Rotobox (RBX) obviously agrees and is producing these tasty carbon fiber wheels for the BMW S1000RR. By implementing a new way of joining the hub to the wheel, the end product better stands up to massive amounts of torque. While the radical look may appear chunky, a complete set weighs only a claimed 15.5 lbs. combined. That's 6.5 lbs for the front/ 8.97 rear. Dayum! Each spoke is hollow not only for weight savings but to allow more compressed air into each mounted tire—a feature that claims improved ride quality without sacrificing performance. With a design unlike any other wheel on the market, extreme weight savings and strength, RBX is a high-end option worth considering for any rider who hasn't yet been totally decimated by the economy. Price for the pair?? Are you sitting??.. $4100US at Superstreetbike.com

2. Illinois: Score one for the lawmakers in Illinois. Starting on Jan 1st, 2013, a new law gives motorcyclists the go-ahead to run red lights. Woohoo!! Motorcycles and bicycles aren't usually heavy enough to trigger ground sensors that switch traffic lights from red to green so many motorcyclists stay stuck at intersections and have to wait for a larger vehicle to come along or run the light and risk getting ticketed. Under the new measure, when a motorcycle comes up to a red light or a left-turn arrow and waits for two minutes or more for the light to change, they will be able to legally proceed if the coast is clear. Imagine that!! A law actually encouraging "personal responsibility."

If erection lasts over 4 hours.. call your doctor!

3. If you're looking for an aftermarket fairing bolt kit for your older K1200RS...I recently found this on Ebay... BMW 1997 K1200 RS Pro Bolt Aluminium Gold Fairing Bolt Kit FBM100G

4. PUIG has a new Rear Hugger available for the BMW K1300S and IMHO.. it's beautiful..They have 3 versions.. A faux carbon Fiber, Black, and Matte Black. If I had a K13S.. This is the one I'd buy.. I wish they made one for the K1200S.. Damn!

5. Looks like Corbin has some new products for the BMW K1600GT / GTL on the market. Check out their K1600GTL Duel Touring Saddle with optional rider backrest, the K1600GT Touring Saddle, and the Front Saddle & Smuggler Trunk for BMW K1600 GT & GTL. I'm sure these will be reasonably priced.. Bwaaah.. As most of our newsletter readers know.. I'm not a big fan of Corbin although it's not because they make a poor product..On the contrary. Corbin products are generally first rate.. What I don't like is their poor customer service and criminally insane prices. The fact that they cover all their seats with LEATHER..WTF?! ..rather than vinyl just gets my panties in a wad. Here are two videos (contributed by I-BMW's Bill Harr) showing what it will hold and another with the BMW GT top box.

6. Not sure if this is yet another result of the crushing economic pressures brought on by a weakened economy, but we just got word that Gerbing... long time maker or heated gear just sold out. This may be a good thing..The company looks like it's now set up to continue with the new cash infusion. We wish them the best of luck.

What's in your wallet?

What's New at Pirates' Lair?

1. Here's something you BMW K1600GT & K1600GTL owners might find tasty. For those wanting to protect your hard bags from flying debris as well as boot scuffs from you and/or your inconsiderate passenger.. we now carry the all new TechSpec Saddle Box Covers! in the same Snake Skin material as our tank protectors. These (2) piece kits will fit the BMW K1600GT & K1600GTL.. Get them while they're hot!!! You'll be glad you did. The peel-n-stick material is a rubber product only.125" thick with a low profile diamond grip pattern for classic good looks and durability.. Each (2) piece kit includes R & L hard bag covers. Fits the BMW K1600GT & K1600GTL.

2. For those of you with ADD.. as per the blurb above.. Pirates Lair is now the lone US /importer distributor for Laser Exhausts of the Netherlands. We'll be carrying the entire product line! Links above to the current BMW models. Apparently I have a guardian angel.

Click Here To See More... If You Dare!

3. Some of my long term newsletter readers can probably recall a few of my past rants aimed at former Road Rocketeer / Gizmo Mill owner, Kevin Demers. To reiterate.. the sorry Canadian bastage closed shop and left town owing us hundreds of dollars a few years ago. Soon after, we heard from a dozen other vendors he treated similarly. I filed a complaint with the Canadian equivalent of the BBB just to make things official. FYI.. I hear he pops up like a dung beetle now and then.. sets up shop.. sells a few things... then crawls back into his hole. What a wonderful life that must be for him and his family. Just got the following from another of Kevin's victims... (pasted)

"Mr. Pirate.. I heard how Kevin screwed you over so badly. He's done the same here. Several months of unpaid rent, slit our cable wires, broke into our car and stole our belongings. They're horrible. They seem to owe many people money at this point. We reported them to the police this afternoon, before discovering how many articles are online about them. If anything else happens with this I'll keep you posted. They still have kids in school and are doing some sort of home business out of the garage though so I think they were lying about fleeing. On Dec 31st when we kick them out I will relay (as per your wishes) your regards. Merry Christmas!"

4. We've been getting a lot of requests for brake lever extensions from the K1600GT/GTL guys and up until last week.. none were available.. Well, my friends.. as promised we'll soon have them.. Hornig (of Germany) now has one on their menu and we've got some ordered... Should have them any day now. As we all know.. a small brake lever makes for a cheatin' wife.. This brake lever adapter fits directly over the existing brake lever giving you the extra length your wife dreams about. Problem solved. Simple install using a (2) furnished set screws. Fits the K1600GT & K1600GTL only. Click Here for a full view. Pirates' Price $76.US delivered.

5. Pirates Lair rarely runs specials, but here's one for you... We are overstocked on H3 HID kits... Until we can diminish our stock, we've dropped the price on them from $60 to $45 delivered! Get them while they last!!

Click Here To See More... If You Dare

6. Our Suzuki VStrom Stealth Backrest has been discontinued! Have just put the following disclaimer on our website regarding our VStrom Stealth Backrest....http://pirateslair.net/SuzukiV.htm
VStrom Owners : Due to the fact that the election didn't quite go as expected, Pirates Lair is being forced to streamline our operation in order to survive the upcoming 4 years. Some products will simply have to be dropped from the menu and unfortunately this backrest is one of them. Combine that hard reality with the fact that many (not all) of the 2012 and 2013 VStroms now have a new rear rack (which isn't compatible with our  Stealth backrest).. we're going to discontinue them as soon as our current stock is exhausted. I honestly hate to do this as I am very proud of the design.. It's not personal. It's mathematics.

With that said.. the fact that many of the 2012 and 2013 VStroms now have a new rear rack kinda made the decision easier. FYI.. we're keeping the plans so if demand is up by summer we can always produce more... I don't see that happening, but never say never... . As of today I think we have around 10 left..

Click Here To See More... If You Dare

K12 / K13 / K16 Rally Event News : 2013

2013 Blue Ridge Parkway I-BMW.com Rally: May 16-19, 2013

Where: Wattstull Inn, just north of Buchanan, Virginia
When: May 16th thru 19th, 2011 (Thur – Sun)

Call Wattstull Inn for reservations.
540-254-1551 / Mention: i-bmw group
SPECIFY ROOM TYPE - single, double, king..

Blue Ridge Parkway info and maps can be found here and here

Alternate Lodging (info only) : Super 8 – Bedford or Days Inn – Bedford or Peaks of Otter Lodge

...and don't forget... Pirates Lair will be offering your choice of either Pirates Lair Plundering hats, Pirates Lair tees, or $25 gift cards to anyone who achieves a "velocity award" while in transit to or from or at the rally itself..

NOTE: I-bmw.com is not an official sponsor of any posted events. Event participation is the sole responsibility of the attendee. Motorcycle riding is potentially dangerous and can result in personal injury or death or lots of velocity awards.. You and you alone are responsible for your own safety. Ride within your own ability. It's called.. "personal responsibility."

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The 1st Annual I-BMW Rocky Mountain Rally: July 14 through July 17, 2013

Where: Quality Inn of Gunnison
Nearest town: Gunnison, Colorado
When: July 14 through July 17, 2013
Reservations: 970-641-1237

Our base of operations will be the Quality Inn of Gunnison, which is located at 400 E. Tomichi Ave (also known as U.S. 50) in Gunnison. They are currently taking reservations for a block of rooms that are reserved for us. I encourage you to make you reservations early (like now), and to mention that you are with the BMW Motorcycle Group in order to get the rate of $95 plus tax per night (down from their advertised $119 + tax). Most of the rooms have two queen-sized beds, but there are also some available with one king or one queen. A hot breakfast is included.

Cancellation Policy: If you call as late as the day before (24 hours) you are supposed to arrive, they will not charge your card. Also, in case of a family emergency or hospitalization, you could call the day you're due to arrive and they would also not charge your card. And I also confirmed with them that if you make the reservation and tell them that you want to arrive earlier or stay later than the Sunday to Wednesday time frame, they will give you the $95 rate for all the days that you are there.

NOTE: I-bmw.com is not an official sponsor of any posted events. Event participation is the sole responsibility of the attendee. Motorcycle riding is potentially dangerous and can result in personal injury or death or lots of velocity awards.. You and you alone are responsible for your own safety. Ride within your own ability. It's called.. "personal responsibility."

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The 6th Annual I-BMW Sierra Goldrush Rally: Sept 6th-10th, 2013

Where: Creekside Lodge
Where: Markleeville 14820 State Route 89, Markleeville, CA
When: Friday, September 6th… check out date is estimated to be Tuesday, September 10th
Reservations: Jeannie at the Creekside Lodge, 530 694-2229

In 2013, we will return to the Riverside Inn in Downieville for the pre-rally. We will check in at the Riverside Inn on Tuesday, September 3rd, and check out on Friday, September 6th for our ride to Markleeville. I have reserved the entire Riverside Inn, save for one room, for our group. Please call Mike or Nancy at 888-883-5100 or 530-289-1000 for your individual reservation, and you MUST identify yourself as part of the I-BMW group!!

Accommodations for the 2013 SGR event in Markleeville will be, once again, at the Creekside Lodge, and I have reserved the entire lodge for our group. Our check in date will be Friday, September 6th… check out date is estimated to be Tuesday, September 10th, but that can be determined individually when your reservation is made. Please call Jeannie at the Creekside Lodge, 530 694-2229, and once again, you MUST identify yourself as a member of the I-BMW group.

...and don't forget... Pirates Lair will be offering your choice of either Pirates Lair Plundering hats, Pirates Lair tees, or $25 gift cards to anyone who achieves a "velocity award" while in transit to or from or at the rally itself.. If we don't reward bad behavior... who else will?? Arrrrrrg.

NOTE: I-bmw.com is not an official sponsor of any posted events. Event participation is the sole responsibility of the attendee. Motorcycle riding is potentially dangerous and can result in personal injury or death or lots of velocity awards.. You and you alone are responsible for your own safety. Ride within your own ability. It's called.. "personal responsibility."

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The 14th Annual I-BMW Deals Gap Rally: October 3-6th, 2013

Where: Fontana Village Resort
Nearest town: Robbinsville, NC
When: October 3rd-6th, 2011 [Thur-Sunday]
Reservations: Direct 800.849.2258

Geezz. Have we been doing this for 14 years? I've had wives that didn't last that long. 20 lodge rooms w/ 2 queen beds/ns: $85+tax - 6 2br cabins with 1 queen and 2 twin beds/kitchen/ns: $120+tax When calling, specify room or cabin. Cabins will be either the Laurel or Hemlock cabins. Reservations for blocked out rooms will end 45 days prior. Saavy? Be sure to mention i-bmw group when booking.

...and don't forget... Pirates Lair will be offering your choice of either Pirates Lair Plundering hats, Pirates Lair tees, or $25 gift cards to anyone who achieves a "velocity award" while in transit to or from or at the rally itself.. If we don't reward bad behavior... who else will?? Arrrrrrg.

NOTE: I-bmw.com is not an official sponsor of any posted events. Event participation is the sole responsibility of the attendee. Motorcycle riding is potentially dangerous and can result in personal injury or death or lots of velocity awards.. You and you alone are responsible for your own safety. Ride within your own ability. It's called.. "personal responsibility."

Be there!!!


How-To-Survive On A Motorcycle

Our newest contribution is for our How to Survive Deals Gap section. Sent in by Dale Wolf Sarasota, FL Woohoo! Check out his safety tip # 20! Thx, bro. Could his tip save your life? Dare you not look?.

If you'd like to help others by contributing a How-To-Survive On A Motorcycle, How to Survive Deals Gap, or any How-To link.. First... check out the tips we already have and if you have something new... just send to me and if it's worthy... I'll add it.

Pirates Lair Sacred Archives

We get a lot of requests for specific articles and/or reviews I've written in the past. Rather than fry my aging brain trying to remember where they are on our multi-hundred page website, I have decided to list the "worthy" ones here. Most of the links are to past newsletters.. Some are to full web articles. Remember, I'm no expert on anything except perhaps cunnilingus so the opinions within the archives are only my own. Saavy?

BMW How-To Section

The last contribution for our How-To section is..
How-To Install Verholen 85mm Handlebar Riser Installation on 2010 K1300S contributed by Sir Stephen Myott. Thx, Steve.

Picture at right Courtesy of Sports Illustrated photographer Walter Iooss, Jr. / Model: Ms Melissa Haro

Click For Larger Image.. If You Want a Chub..

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Pirates Lair Cheesy Newsletters .. Past Issues