June 6, 2008

Loud Pipes Play Rap Music

I'm going to load up some huge sub-woofers in my Escalade and start blasting 50 Cent. Not because I like Fitty's music (if you can call it that). I will pump out throbbing bass for safety.

See this on a T-shirt!As ridiculous as that might sound, it's the rationale used by thousands of motorcyclists who yank the exhaust off their bikes. "It's not my libido- it's for safety."

The myth that "loud pipes save lives" appears to be more popular than ever. But even more obvious is the public backlash against annoying exhaust pipes. Almost daily I see news reports of another town or community enacting ordinances to limit motorcycle sound levels.

You might ask, "Doesn't that piss you off?" Not nearly as much as the reaction from the motorcycling community.

Any discussion of the issue is typically off-limits. More often than not the immediate reaction is the old don't-tread-on-me line. The teary-eyed plea from flag-draped bikers is, "We're the real victims here, man." Sorry, it just doesn't hold water. The fact is a self-absorbed minority have created a problem, but everyone who rides is going to suffer the consequences. Playing roshambo with individual rights isn't going to solve anything.

Be Seen and Not Herd T-ShirtAccording to the American Motorcyclists Association: "Of the myriad issues facing motorcyclists today, excessive motorcycle sound has become the single greatest threat to American motorcycling’s future. It’s among the most controversial and potentially divisive issues in motorcycling and, we believe, the issue over which motorcyclists have the most control."

Dude, that's not some government think tank- that's a quote from the AM-freakin' A.

There is no proof whatsoever that excessive sound makes a motorcyclist any safer. Now you can find tons of anecdotal evidence: "I revved her up and the car snapped right back into their lane." Which does prove something- the need for more rider awareness training. Are you riding in someone's blind spot? Then you need to spend money on an MSF course, not drag pipes.

According to the Hurt Report, almost 80% of motorcycle collisions that result in fatalities originate in front of you. The 11:00 o'clock position to be exact. No surprise to me- most of my Oh Shit moments involve a car pulling out of a driveway, left-turners, etc. We drive on the right side of the road so oncoming traffic will be somewhere in that 10 to 12 o'clock area.

It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out that loud pipes, or rap music, won't offer you any protection.


Anonymous said...

iride backroads at night, and day, but i can tell you without doubt that when i put on my vance & hines 2:1 the deer backed off

Anonymous said...

People who are the first to rush to enact laws like this to control others lives are always those that really need to go out and take a riders course. They need to live.

You don't have time to worry about controlling everyone else when you are living for yourself. Get a bike, go ride, be happy and leave me alone. Unless yer offering to buy a round. Then feel free to bug me.

Live free brothers...

Webmaster said...

"You don't have time to worry about controlling everyone else when you are living for yourself."

Yet it is your irresponsible behavior that will affect me and many others. You live for yourself and I pay the price.

Now explain to me again whose liberty is at stake here?

Anonymous said...

Riding, like driving, is a PRIVILEGE not a right! When something one does (eliminating exhaust muffling) results in harm or nuisance to others (disruptively loud bikes) then the freedom to do such ends.

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