Take me home, El Capitan!

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

Around every other month, when I deem you are worthy, we post 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?

Warning: 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.

FYI.. If you'd like to be notified when each new newsletter is posted, just email me with your request and I'll make that happen. Our email database is 100% secure. Stored in a lock box formerly owned by Al Gore. Never shared or sold to third parties. Never perused by the NSA. Your name and email address will be safe with us into infinity and beyond.

Bad Santa

The Latest Cheesy Pirates' Lair Newsletter: November / December 2014 Issue : Happy Holidays!

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

Are we ready? Two hundred and fifty strands of lights... one hundred individual bulbs per strand for a grand total of twenty-five thousand individual, miniature imported Italian twinkle lights. Twenty-five THOUSAND! The lights go on and the power surge temporarily drains the cities's power grid. The orbiting space shuttle can see their house from space. All the family runs out and gathers around Clark. Tears well up in his eyes.

Nora: It's lovely Clark.
Clark: You deserve a house like this to spend Christmas in.
Clark Sr.: It's a beaut, Clark.
Clark: Dad, Dad, Dad... I learned everything I know about exterior illumination from you and the Cheesy Pirates Lair Newsletter.
Clark: He embraces Francis Dear Francis. I hope this adds to your enjoyment of the holidays.
Clark: Clark embraces his father in law, Art. Art... Arthur.. Dad. Thanks for being here.
Art: You got too many blue lights.
Clark: I know Art. Thanks for noticing.

Clark moves to the next person.. Catherine is wearing a quilted car coat. Clark hugs her.
Clark:  Catherine ..Dear..
Something's not quite right. Clark lets go of her.. steps back and looks at her and Eddie.
Clark: Eddie?
Cousin Eddie: I sure hope you didn't do this on our behalf...
Clark: Eddie?

Clark Griswold / Chevy Chase .. Nora / Diane Ladd.. Cousin Eddie / Randy Quaid .. Christmas Vacation (1989)

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

Picture Of The Month! Fall Colors In Massachusetts! (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 November / December POTM was contributed by Curt Presson . He says of the shot... "The location is at the Blue Swallow Motel on Route 66 in Tucumcari, NM July 2014 during the evening of a night's stay in route to the i-BMW Rocky Mountain Rally. I had just finished a day behind the wheel and was relaxing in the courtyard with my favorite adult beverage when suddenly I had a thought the KS would look cool sitting in front of the Blue Swallow's iconic neon sign at night. I was told by the owners that the sign was added to the BS sometime in the 1950's. The shot was taken around dusk with my inexpensive Panasonic point & shoot camera. ."

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. C. No GS's for Gods sake.

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2014 I-BMW. com Deals Gap Rally: Crazy Weather and Moonshine! (Promoted by www.I-BMW.com )

The 2014 I-BMW.com Deals Gap Rally was again the center of the known universe a few weeks ago. This (our 15th) year had the weirdest weather of any I-BMW rally I've attended.. On Thursday I arrived to sunny skies and almost 80 degrees... Friday we woke to rain and ominous clouds which lasted most of the day... Perfect for sleeping late and napping, but it didn't stop the party at the Wildwood Grill that night... Then Saturday it was sunny again, windy, and cold. At the resort and surrounding roads it was 40's and 50's. While crossing the highest point up on the Cherohala Skyway (around 4000ft) , we saw 34 degrees with my dash flashing an ice warning...WTF!!?? That's an almost 50 degree temperature swing over 3 days.. Simply crazy. Thank Allah I brought my electric vest.. Very nipply. Did it slow us down?? Hell no...

Rumor has it that there was a reported moonshine shortage in the area just after our little band of misfits left town. Coincidence? No comment. What happens at DGR... stays at DGR. Otherwise we had a great group this year with at least 38 people in attendance.. Up from previous years. Thanks everyone who attended for keeping the tradition going. Was good seeing everyone again. See yall next year! (2015 rally dates are posted in rally section below.)

I 've posted all the rally pics I could pilfer from I-BMW in the Pirates Lair Photo Gallery. Look for the album cleverly titled.... DGR15-2014. If any of our attendees are in the witness protection program and would like their pic(s) removed.. Just PM me.

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What Men Really Want for Christmas: Pirates Lair Gift Cards, Tees, Hats!

Through the years we've gotten more requests for Pirates Lair gift cards, tees, and hats than anything else except perhaps naked pictures of Amber. Who are we to deny the masses? Pirates' Lair again is offering Pirates Lair Gift Cards this holiday season in a number of denominations to fit your congressionally pummeled budget. From $25 to $300! Our standard sized plastic gift card is sleek, stylish, and professionally made. And no.. it doesn't look anything like the babe at right although that's NOT a bad idea. Whip it out (the card, that is) and you will garner respect and admiration from not only your peers, but also the less fortunate around you. And yes... we are also offering our newly printed, limited edition long sleeve Pirates Lair Plundering Tees and Hats this holiday season!

Like buying underwear or choosing a hooker, buying motorcycle accessories is a very personal thing. Simply guessing what your favorite rider actually needs/wants/desires for his ride is a hit or miss proposition. Rather than putting yourself in the embarrassing situation of getting the wrong thing or worse.. something that he or she hates and has to return... you can't go wrong with one of our waaaay cool Pirates Lair Gift Cards. Ladies.. these are perfect for the holidays, birthdays, weddings, promotions, or just a way of saying.. "Honey.. I'm sorry I slept with your brother." Remember.. nothing says.. "I love you" or "I'm sorry" to a man like shiny plastic or I suppose.. an unexpected BJ.. One that doesn't involve begging, cash, or undercover police officers.

Included with every Pirates Lair Gift Card is a single-fold, greeting card style gift card holder with a folded/glued pocket inside for easy gift card insertion and removal. And that's not all! We also include a small matching envelope. Folded size: 4 3/4" x 3 3/8" Actual cost of each card is $5 to cover cost of card, holder, envelope package, and insured shipping inside the US. For instance.. a $25 gift card will cost $30 to your door. Saavy? Foreign orders are welcome. Happy Holidays!

I got what you want!!

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Intermot: 2015 BMW S1000RR Unveiled! More Power, Less Weight!

BMW has just unveiled its revised 2015 S1000RR with power up 6hp to 199hp and cut the motorcycle's weight with a full tank of fuel to a feather-light 450 pounds.The German firm's flagship sport bike has been given a lighter frame and chassis geometry tweaks aimed at improving handling and feedback. According to every Moto magazine review I've read in the last few weeks... this is what Jesus would ride.

Torque has been increased at over 5,000rpm, with a peak of 83lbft and a 'wide torque plateau' between 9,500 and 12,000rpm, according to BMW. Styling has been updated, with new bodywork and the trademark asymmetrical headlights swapped around to make it 'recognizable as new at first glance. The new bike has a new frame structure and chassis geometry for superior riding precision and even better handling. Further improved Dynamic Damping Control (DDC) from the HP4 as an ex-works option

Three-mode traction control and race ABS are standard. A further two riding modes and BMW's Dynamic Damping Control semi-active suspension, previously found on the high-spec HP4 version, are available as an option. The optional extra electronics package also includes 'launch control' for 'flawless racing starts', plus a pit-lane speed limiter. Other offered features include a "tilt-o-meter" which logs and displays your lean angle (very cool) and finally... a cruise control, a first for a superbike according to BMW. Apparently they have been listening.

The new S1000RR comes in red and white, metallic black or 'BMW Motorsport' colors. Here's a link to the official BMW Press Kit. Looks like BMW has raised the bar yet again.. Anyone surprised? What's in your wallet?

Click For Larger Erection

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Pirates Lair R1200GSW Stealth Backrest: Saddle Up.. We're In Production!

In this holiday season, I bring tidings of great joy for all people. Well maybe not all people, but at least every R1200GSW owner who has been waiting for our much delayed "R1200GSW Stealth" backrest. Damn this was a long time comin.' Our latest backrest was supposed to have been on the market last spring. The good news is, after a full year of research, development, and real-world testing it's finally in production and due in our hands within the next few weeks.

As per the prophesies, it's a thing of beauty, simplicity, and comfort and IMHO .. a worthy addition to the Pirates' Lair line of specialty backrests. Sargent seats will also be selling them (as an option) with their new GSW seats. Check out the first customer comments here..

The lightweight aluminum stealth bracket bolts directly to the standard GSW factory rack via furnished stainless steel hardware and compliments the lines of the bike. Production versions will be covered with a slightly textured, durable black or silver powder coating. The backrest's polished stainless steel slide bar slides on and off the bike in under 20 seconds and.. without tools. Our backrest will NOT fit the Adventure model. Sorry.

These should be available around Christmas or New Years... The perfect gift for any R1200GSW passenger... We will have them here.. You are welcome.

Click for Larger Image.. If You Dare

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Product Review Follow-Ups: Year End Closure and Reflection for 2014

Over the past year I've done quite a few product reviews. As we all know.. opinions can and do change after we've used something for a while. . Sometimes for the better.. sometimes for the worse. Wife # 3 comes to mind, but I digress. Thought I'd wrap up the year's last cheesy newsletter with some final thoughts..

Follow-Up: Westco Platinum WC14 Battery Jan/Feb 2014 In our Jan 2014 newsletter I wrote of my then new Westco Platinum WC14 Battery. I had just bought it as a replacement for a my original 7 year old oem battery. Since then the Westco has met and exceeded all my expectations. The WC14 puts out 220 cold cranking amps compared to 200 for the oem battery (more power, Scotty!) and yes.. you can really tell it every time you hit the starter button. This battery rocks. Diggety

Follow-Up: Michelin Pilot Power 3's July / Aug 2013 As many of you know, I go through tires like Steven Tyler goes though scarves. My goal? Finding that elusive of all creatures... A sport oriented street tire that offers a reasonable balance between cost, longevity, and ultimate stick. Virtually all the tires I've tested through the years have come up short in one way or another. Some close.. some not even. My initial review of the PP3's in our July 2012 issue was both optimistic and promising. Now after over a year of diligent testing under both legal and quasi-legal conditions... the results are in and I'm shocked.. Yes shocked! The mileage figures below were racked up on my 2006 K1200S on virtually the same roads.. Almost all the miles were in the twisties... No interstate slabbing. Impressive or what?

Ginger? or MaryAnn?
Front Tire
Dunlop Q2- 2270 miles
Michelin Pilot Power Pure- 2750 miles
Michelin Pilot Power 3 - 3780 miles
Rear Tire
Dunlop Q2 - 2820 miles
Michelin Pilot Power Pure - 3640 miles
Michelin Pilot Power 3 - 5000 miles

At least for my riding style, the Michelin Pilot Power 3 appears to be the closest I've ever come to the"perfect" tire... They are so far the longest lasting "sport tire" I've ever used. The grip is exemplary. Faultless. The stuff of legends. Merci, Michelin. They've got my vote as best "sport / sport-touring" tire on the market.


What's New In the BMW 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. We're starting to get 2015 I-BMW Rally schedules in. (See rally section below).. I just signed the contract for the 2015 I-BMW Deals Gap Rally to be held again at the Fontana Village Resort. You can make reservations now under the I-BMW banner or... you may want to wait a few weeks as we just heard that the Tapoco Lodge, site of our first 10 or so I-BMW DGR rallies, has just been sold and the new owners (we hear).. want us back. I'm supposed to speak with the new owners this week to see what the rates will be... Stay tuned.

2. Here's a last minute idea for an inexpensive Christmas present.. FYI.. I never ride without wearing a helmet liner inside my helmet.. NEVER.. and the best one on the market IMHO is the Wick-It Helmet Liner made by 2UpTouring.com. I actually did a review of this helmet liner in our July 2012 Issue. I still use mine on every ride. I have 2 that I rotate in the wash when the other is dirty. Did I mention these are made here in the USA?

3. I feel honored to have been asked to do and interview for the I-BMW.com newsletter. Guess they ran out of "interesting" people to interview. If you get really bored and would like some insight into a sick mind... check it out.. The I-BMW Interview with Pirate.

4. Credit where credit is due.. Yes.. I'm the first to rip into a company with horrid service, but I'm also a proponent of giving kudos to any company that goes above and beyond the norm with exceptional service.. A few weeks ago my 8 year old PIAA 2100 series light stopped working on my K1200S. I changed the bulb... checked wiring... ground.. power ..prayed to my respective gods.. Still nothing. No matter how much rum I drank.. I couldn't figure it out.. I kinda figured the wires or the in-line relay had just gone bad over time. Rather than leave the kit on the bike to remind me of my failure to diagnose the problem, I removed it. Took me a 2 full hours. I called PIAA and spoke to their tech guy.. He was also baffled. He said... "Send in in.. I'll have a look at it and let you know.." I shipped them the entire kit including the old and new bulb I'd purchased with a note saying... Call me for a credit card number once you figure out the damage.. One week later I received an all new wiring harness and (2) new bulbs.. all at NO CHARGE. Now that's what I call great service... Thank you, PIAA!

5. I found this while surfing Amazon.com... It's one of the best looking kits I've seen. Check out the Fender Eliminator Kit + Block Off Plate for BMW S1000R S1000RR HP4 2010-2014 by Motodynamic. Price is a reasonable $74.95 + $11.99 shipping. Direct bolt on - Zero modifications. Block off plate included (for track) All wiring and hardware included. Includes white LED plate light Powder coated flat black steel ... I like it!!!

6. If you are one of the unlucky K12 owners who've experienced an ABS module failure and faced a $2500-3000 bill, here's some encouraging news for you. A customer of mine found a source that can rebuild these devilish assemblies for around $300 and offers a 5 year warranty. Check out ModuleMasters. You are most welcome...

S1000RR Fender Elimination Kit by Motodynamic!

What's New at Pirates' Lair?

1. Holiday Military Kudos: During the month of December, Pirates Lair will again be giving away a Free Pirates Lair Kickstand Pad with each order to every customer currently serving in the military... If you are on active duty, just ask and you shall receive. You will NOT see these listed on our website. Our kickstand pads are made of a black thermoplastic with our Pirates Lair logo emblazoned on them. We had such a great response on this last year that I've decided to make this a Pirates Lair holiday tradition. We hope our service men and women around the world take us up on the offer. This is our humble way of saying "Thank you for all you do, soldier..."

2. We just found out that the Techmount Euro Radar Mounts we sell for the BMW S1000RR will also fit the new S1000R... They share the same 55mm forks...

3. Just a reminder... For the last 12 years I've collected photos of bikes, rallies, events, vacations, babes, etc and have uploaded all of them to the Pirates Lair Photo Gallery hosted by SmugMug. I have dozens of albums there for public viewing and/or downloading. Our "Wall of Shame" album seems to get the most hits.. Enjoy.

4. Are you turning your ride into a Frankenbike with splices and wiring and electrical tape stretched all over creation? Rather than wasting more prayers on a deaf god, move into the 21st century with the PDM60 Power Distribution Module. No more blown fuses, tangled wiring, overloaded circuits, CanBus related power interruptions, confusion, frustration, or erectile dysfunction.. The PDM60 is fully user programmable. With the PDM60 you get six power circuits and 60 Amps of power handling capability. That's enough to handle all of your accessories.. radar detector, lights, horns, heated gear or grips, Auto Suck, GPS, cell phone, etc, etc... CanBus compatible.. Easy 3 wire install. Not cheap, but worth every doubloon. The perfect Christmas gift, IMHO..

5. If you own a BMW K1200R or K1200R Sport and have been looking for a Carbon Fiber Bellypan.... Check out this new piece from Pyramid Plastics. If you thought your only options were those butt ugly metal abominations or painted fiberglass... you were wrong, bukko! We now have them listed on our menu as a special order item.

Click Here To See More... If You Dare

6. Woohoo!! As per the blurb in the top section, after a full year of research, development, and real-world testing our R1200GSW Stealth backrest is finally in production. These should be available around Christmas or shortly thereafter... The perfect gift for any R1200GSW passenger... You are welcome.

7. Until Jan 1st, 2015, all our Pirates Lair tees are on sale!!! Yes.. you heard that correctly. Both short and long sleeve. We just got a shipment of LONG SLEEVE Pirates Lair Plundering tees just in time for the cold months ahead and the holidays. The XXLarge tees also make wonderful sleepwear for your rug rats or that special person in your life. Also good for covering up back hair and/or aging tattoos. Guaranteed to get you laid more often.*
* Does not work on married or GS riders.

Click Here To See More... If You Dare

I-BMW Rally Event News : 2015
Here ye.. Here ye: I-bmw.com is not an "official" sponsor of any of the following 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."

The First 2015 Australian I-BMW Rally: March 14-16th, 2015

Where: Meet Friday evening the 13th of March at Jingellic Pub/Hotel
Address: 3149 River Road Jingellic, NSW 2642
Nearest town: Jingellic, New South Wales
When: March 14-16th, 2015 (Arrive on and meet Fri )
Reservations: Tel: 02 6037 1290

All rally details including detailed maps showing the daily routes, lodging, etc... can be found at I-BMW.com Motorcycle rentals are available out of Sydney and Melbourne with quite a few BMW's on the menu. Costs are about $200-300+ a day plus insurance, deposit etc. The tentative (and fluid) plan is for 3 days riding together through and around the snowy mountains. This rally will make I-BMW history... and it's been a long time coming.. Be a part of (hopefully) a new tradition.. and watch out for the 'roos.

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."

The 3rd Annual I-BMW Rocky Mountain Rally: July 19 through July 22, 2015

Where: Quality Inn of Gunnison
Nearest town: Gunnison, Colorado
When: July 19 through July 22, 2015
Reservations: 970-641-1237

Our base of operations will again 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. Here is a link to the motel's website

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, they will give you the $95 rate for all the days that you are there.

2015 I-BMW KHCR: Aug. 6-9th, 2015

Where: Blue Licks Battlefield State Park
Address: 10299 Maysville Rd, Carlisle, KY 40311
Nearest town: Maysville, Ky
When: Aug. 6,7,8, and 9 (Arrive on Thur, play Fri and Sat and depart Sun )
Reservations: 800 443-7008

For reservations call 800 443-7008. There is a restaurant on the grounds. The rooms will be held until July 7. The site is roughly 15 miles South of Maysville Ky on us 68. It is 42 miles North of Lexington Ky on us 68. It is 78 miles East of Cincinnati Ohio. 114 miles East of Louisville Ky and 104 miles West of Huntington W.Va. Ridge land abounds with nice roadways and long views.

The 16th Annual I-BMW Deals Gap Rally: October 1-4th, 2015

Where: Fontana Village Resort
Nearest town: Robbinsville, NC
When: October 1st-4th, 2015 [Thur-Sunday]
Reservations: Direct 800.849.2258

Geezz. Have we been doing this for 15 years? I've had marriages that didn't last that long. I have negotiated the same room prices for 2015 as last year. Rooms w/ 2 queen beds/ns: $85+tax - 6 2br cabins with 1 queen and 2 twin beds/kitchen/ns: $159+tax. Call 800-849-2258 option 1. (If you are booking a room, remember to request the main lodge.) Cabins will be Azalea cabins. Reservations for blocked out rooms will end 45 days prior. Saavy? Be sure to mention i-bmw group when booking. Amber and I will be there. Neither of us will be wearing panties.

...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.

Be there!!!

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How-To-Survive On A Motorcycle

We have no new contributions this month. Our last safe riding tip # 163 was sent in by Dwight Manuel of Asheville, NC!
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

We have a new contribution for December. A perfect way to end the year. Check out the
How-To Install an Air Filter Replacement on K1600 contributed by Sir Joe Phelan. Thx, buddy.

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

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Guess that kinda wraps this one up. This will be the last communiqué for 2014. It's been a challenging year for Amber and I (and Pirates' Lair) thanks to the Obama regime, but we survived another year. Who knows what the future will bring. Amber and I appreciate everyone's help, advice, encouragement, and occasional naked pics throughout this past year. Best wishes to you all for a prosperous 2015...

In spite of what the far left ACLU would like us to say, we sincerely hope that you and yours (no matter what bike you ride and/or religion) have a a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. Remember if you're gonna drink...stop by here and of course... leave the bike at home... For our secularist customers... Happy Winter Season.

For the US troops serving all over the world thank you for everything you are doing for us and our country. Godspeed, soldier.

Take care.. ride safe...stay warm.. watch out for flying reindeer...see you in the New Year..

Pirates Lair Cheesy Newsletters .. Past Issues