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A heated epiphany.

By Wom Battle

Last evening I took a leisurely ride to the big smoke to meet up with some friends.  It'd been too long since I had had my 2009 Harley-Davidson Road King out and the weather was perfect.  Also in my mind was my impending attempt on the Saddlesore 1600k, so with new clear safety glasses for night riding I was keen to try them out.

The trip down the F3 was relaxing, not too much traffic, it was great to be out on the road again.  The function I was heading for was in Strathfield and I decided this time to finally follow the GPS and take Ryde Road rather than my usual Pennant Hills Road - M2 route.  I'm an idiot! Oh well, at least I got to practice my slow riding and made good use of the electric fan I had installed for just that traffic situation.

Now, jumping back in time a week or so... I was talking to a guy about heated grips (for another bike) and I laughed at him, "Never had them, never will need them".  Back to last night - I left Stratfield about 8.30pm, su gone and quite a pleasant temperature, about 12 degrees.  By now Ryde Road was cleared and I had a nice run out on to the Pacific Hwy where I stopped for a drink and threw a long sleeved t-shirt under my jacket and slipped on the BMW Pro Winter 2 gloves, just for comfort on the way home.  I knew it can drop a few degrees heading back through the Central Coast.

It did (about 7 degrees), and as I rode along I got a bit cool, not too uncomfortable mind you but cool all the same.  I did what I've been doing since I entered the world of Harley-Davidsons, with the cruise control on I just alternated dropping one hand down behind the engine and warmed them up. Then it struck me, the Harley already had a twin pot hand warmer installed and I was using it.  Only problem was I had to let go of the bars to use it.  Riding along contemplating this epiphany my mind went back to the Iron Butt ride coming up in less than two weeks where I would be riding this same stretch of road at the same time of night after having ridden 1500k's or so.

This morning I went to the dealership and ordered some heated grips. They go on next Wednesday.

Update:  The heated grips didn't go on.  To cut a long story short - When I ordered them it was based on an indication of two hours to fit them at the dealership.  On the Tuesday I contacted the dealership to confirm they had the parts and indicated that I'd need to pick the bike up at 2.30pm.  I was told that the parts were in and it would be done in time so I organised to get the bike there that afternoon so they could start on it first thing.  I dropped the bike off and was told it might take three hours but they confirmed it would be ready for me to pick up.  I got a call an hour later and was told it might take much more time (not known how long) to fit them and they couldn't guarantee the bike would be ready for me to pick up at 2.30. What a waste of my (&*^%) time.  So I organised transport again to go and get it.

I told the dealership I wanted them to provide a fixed quote to fit the heated grips and after quite some time they came back with 6 hours, clearly covering their bases if they stuffed up or assuming they would.  My independent advice was the job should take three hours max. The logic of spending nearly $700 to have a sub $300 part fitted doesn't make sense to me so I'm not getting them and I'll continue to use the V-Twin as the hand warmer.  If I'd have been given accurate info at the dealership the first time I went in I'd have never ordered them and not been significantly inconvenienced.  I'm not thinking of any nice words right now so I'll stop typing.



Disclaimer: This non commercial website and its content is not affiliated with or associated in any way with the Harley-Davidson Motor Company, Harley-Davidson Australia, the Harley-Davidson Owners Group® or any Harley-Davidson® Dealers in Australia.  The use of the terms Harley-Davidson, and Road King® are unavoidable because that's what I own and ride.  This website,  called "My Harley Davidson" , and any opinions or comments expressed herein are purely about my Harley-Davidson Road King ownership experience, a truly great experience at that. I have no intention whatsoever to infringe on any trademarks or copyright ownership of the Harley-Davidson Motor Company or anyone else.

March 2024