NoCo IMRG Informer Newsletter (March 2024)

Northern Colorado IMRG Informer Newsletter


In a world dominated by four-wheeled vehicles, there’s a unique and exhilarating experience that comes with straddling a two-wheeled machine and hitting the road. Riding a motorcycle is more than just a mode of transportation; it’s a lifestyle and a source of unparalleled joy for enthusiasts everywhere. These are some of the compelling reasons why you should embrace the thrill of riding.

Freedom on Two Wheels

One of the most alluring aspects of riding a motorcycle is the sense of freedom it provides. Unlike being enclosed in a car, a motorcycle allows you to truly connect with the environment around you. The unobstructed view of the landscape creates a liberating experience. Riding a motorcycle is not just a means of getting from point A to B; it’s about the journey itself, offering a unique perspective on the world that is unmatched by any other mode of transportation. Every twist and turn becomes an adventure, and every mile is a chance to explore and discover.

A Symphony of Senses

Cars cocoon you in a bubble of filtered air and muted sounds. Motorcycles, on the other hand, throw you right into the heart of the sensory experience. The rumble of the engine, the smell of the open air, the feel of the wind in your face, and the sun on your skin–it’s a symphony for your senses that awakens every part of you. Every ride becomes a journey of discovery, a chance to appreciate the subtle nuances of the world around you.

Fitness Perks of Motorcycling

Motorcycle riding isn’t just a leisurely cruise; it actively engages your body, torching between 100 and 600 calories per hour. Of course those numbers depend on what type of riding you’re doing, but nevertheless you are burning those calories. It makes sense when you think about it because you are using your whole body. You’re using your muscles to control and maneuver the bike. It’s a great excuse to go riding often and longer–an enjoyable calorie-burning reward.

Wind Therapy

Riding a motorcycle is not just a physical activity; it can also be a powerful form of stress relief. The combination of the rhythmic hum of the engine, the focused attention required for riding, and the freedom of the open road can create a meditative and calming experience. Many riders find the solitude and concentration demanded by motorcycling provide a welcome escape from the stresses of daily life, promoting mental well-being and mindfulness.

Pure Joy on Two Wheels

Riding is just plain fun! There’s something undeniably exhilarating about cruising down a scenic road with your knees in the breeze, and the engine humming beneath you. Motorcycle journeys become unforgettable adventures, filled with breathtaking views, spontaneous detours, and shared laughter with fellow riders. Winding mountain roads, hidden coastal paths, and remote countryside villages become your playground when you’re on a motorcycle. Every weekend can be an escape to a new adventure, a chance to discover hidden gems and create memories that will last a lifetime.

A Brotherhood of Passion

The motorcycle community is more than just a group of riders; it’s a family bound by a shared passion of motorcycles and venturing out on two wheels. Whether you’re a seasoned veteran or a wide-eyed newbie, you’ll find camaraderie, support, and encouragement from fellow riders. There’s a sense of belonging, a shared understanding of the joys and challenges of the two-wheeled life that creates lasting friendships and a feeling of being part of something bigger than yourself. Even a simple biker wave on the highway speaks volumes about the unity we share. Riding ignites conversation, sparking connections with strangers who share the passion (or dream of it!). Whether they’re fellow riders, curious onlookers, or reminiscing about past journeys, a motorcycle instantly breaks the ice.

Sharpen Your Car Driving Skills on Two Wheels

Riding motorcycles will also improve how you drive your car. Riding motorcycles forces you to be more observant of what’s around you including the potential hazards. Sharpening these senses carries over to you while driving your car. There’s less room for error on a motorcycle because the stakes are higher. As such, when you ride, you ride more defensively because it gives you the best opportunity to get where you want to go safely. You watch out for everyone else because almost no one actually gets in their car and thinks, “I need to look out for motorcyclists.” These defensive practices translate over to when you’re driving a car. You start thinking about the same things in your car as you do riding a motorcycle. You’re constantly scanning everything around you and looking for any risk factors.

Transform Mundane Into Excitement and Adventure

Forget bland errands! Straddling a motorcycle, even for a quick trip to the store, ignites adventure. It can transform the mundane into an escapade. Riding a motorcycle can add a little excitement. It’s not just cruising; it’s a symphony of balance, coordination, and quick thinking. Every corner demands precision, every obstacle requires focus. It’s a constant mental and physical challenge that pushes you to your limits and hones your reflexes. Mastering this dance is incredibly rewarding, building confidence and a sense of accomplishment that stays with you long after you dismount.

If you’re looking for an escape from the ordinary, a chance to challenge yourself, and connect with the world around you in a whole new way, motorcycles are the way. It’s not just a mode of transportation; it’s a way of life, and it’s one that’s waiting to be experienced.


Who cares about engine specs, right? Most riders are perfectly content cruising along, blissfully unaware of the torque-horsepower-weight tango happening beneath them. Those that crave raw power with every twist of the throttle, understand this dynamic. If you secretly dream of wheelies and neck-snapping acceleration, deciphering this code unlocks the motorcycle’s true potential.

Let’s be honest, though, engine talk can feel like a snoozefest, so we’ll quickly accelerate into what each of these elements has to do with the performance of your motorcycle and go through them “fast” without a lot of jargon.

Let’s get started…

Torque: Imagine it as the “twisting force” the engine produces. This is like your muscle strength, the raw power you use to push yourself up each step. High torque is like having strong legs that can propel you even on steep inclines with ease. Think of it as the initial “oomph” you need to get moving. The more torque, the easier it is to accelerate from a standstill, climb hills, or carry a heavy load. High torque is particularly important for low-speed maneuvers and pulling power.

Horsepower: This relates to how quickly the engine can do work (in this case, accelerate the motorcycle). It’s like your cardiovascular endurance, how long you can sustain that effort. High horsepower is like having a heart and lungs that can keep you going for long distances without getting winded. It helps you maintain speed once you’ve gained momentum. Horsepower becomes more relevant as speed increases and for maintaining that speed against resistance like wind drag.

Weight: The heavier the motorcycle, the more force (torque and horsepower) is needed to get it moving and keep it moving. It’s like trying to push a loaded shopping cart vs. an empty one. Weight also affects handling and braking.

How Do These Interplay?

Acceleration: While both torque and horsepower contribute, torque generally determines the initial “punch” from a stop or during low-speed maneuvers. However, as speed increases, horsepower takes over in maintaining and increasing that pace.

Top Speed: High horsepower allows the engine to reach higher RPMs, translating to potentially higher top speeds. But remember, weight plays a role – even a powerful engine can be bogged down by a heavy bike.

Power-to-Weight Ratio: This combines both horsepower and weight, giving a broader picture of performance. A higher ratio (more horsepower for less weight) generally means faster acceleration and better overall performance.

Choosing the Right Balance

The ideal combination depends on the desired riding style and needs. Cruisers prioritize low-end torque for pulling power and relaxed cruising. Sport bikes focus on high horsepower for exhilarating acceleration and top speed. Touring motorcycles aim for a balance between the two for comfortable long-distance travel.


A safety tip from Paul Carroll, Northern Colorado IMRG Safety Advisor

Northern Colorado IMRG Safety Tip of the Month… it’s a long one so bear with me and read to the end. Enjoy!!

I get many questions while out on the road about my Clearwater lights that are mounted on each side of the fender of my motorcycle. The common theme is why? While not trying to sound too technical, there is a scientific reason for these lights.

A 1980 study titled “Human Factors in Transport Research” found that “The most important issue with [gear] is the contrast a motorcyclist makes with its background.” A more recent Dutch study concluded that “…contrast with the environment is a major factor to improve conspicuity.”

Another study by Honda Research and Development determined The LONG (Longitudinal Oriented Normative time Gap compensation) concept describes a lighting system that enhances the conspicuity of motorcycles by enhancing the ability of oncoming drivers to evaluate the distance and speed of a motorcycle equipped with lighting in the LONG configuration. It is based on the hypothesis that a motorcycle observed at the same distance and speed as an automobile may be perceived farther away and traveling more slowly than the automobile because of the motorcycle’s higher lamp location and narrower lighting layout compared with that of an automobile. To address this, the LONG configured are spread farther apart along a vertical axis compared to the relatively tightly grouped lighting layout found on a typical motorcycle. This configuration of lighting is known as the “triangle of conspicuity,” which allows a motorist to differentiate between a motorcycle and a car with a headlight out.

How you may ask?

As the triangle gets larger, the human brain can better determine the triangle is getting closer. No matter what grade you received in your geometry and trigonometry classes, your brain automatically performs thousands of geometric and trigonometric calculations per second when it is viewing an approaching motorcycle with a triangular array of lights. Cut that down to one single headlight, and your brain has much less information to process. Because of this, adding a set of auxiliary lights to a motorcycle increases motorists’ ability to judge a motorcyclist’s distance by approximately 10%, and speed by approximately 20%, as well as their direction. This is particularly useful in preventing the most common motorcycle crash situation – the oncoming left turn.

The color of these lights are extremely important! We see color based on the distance between the peaks of waves of energy (wavelengths) of the spectrum generated by light-emitting sources, and how the rods and cones in our eyes are stimulated by these wavelengths. For example, our eyes perceive wavelengths of light between 620 and 750 nanometers (nm) as red, 590 to 620 nm as orange, 570-590 nm as yellow, and 495 to 570 nm as green.

So, what’s the deal with selective yellow? Scientists have found that the human eye is most sensitive to light at a wavelength of 555 nanometers, which corresponds to the bright shade of yellow-green that we’re used to seeing in industrial and motorcycle safety gear. This is why Clearwater day running protective lens covers filter out all wavelengths of light except for 555 nm. I know this is a ton of technical mumbo-jumbo, but the bottom line is these lights will mitigate the risk of someone pulling out in front of you!

Until next time, Ride Safe!


For motorcycle enthusiasts nothing beats the thrill of twisting the throttle on two wheels, but ensuring your safety is paramount.

That’s where T-CLOCS comes in, a simple yet comprehensive pre-ride inspection checklist developed by the Motorcycle Safety Foundation (MSF). By taking a few minutes before each ride to go through the T-CLOCS points you can identify potential problems and avoid getting stranded or, worse, injured.

This acronym stands for:

Lights & Mirrors,
Oil & Fluids,
Chassis &

It’s your pre-ride ritual for a safe and enjoyable journey.

Why is T-CLOCS important?

Simple: it identifies potential problems before they become bigger issues on the road. A worn-out tire, a faulty brake light, or low oil levels can all lead to accidents or breakdowns. By taking a few minutes for a T-CLOCS check, you’re investing in your safety and peace of mind. Each letter represents a crucial aspect of your motorcycle:

Tires and Wheels

Check for proper inflation, tread wear, and any cuts or damage.

● Air Pressure ● Tread ● Cracked sidewalls, dented wheels, loose spokes


Ensure handlebars, levers, cables, and brakes are functioning smoothly and securely.
● Levers and pedals ● Hoses ● Cables ● Throttle

Lights and Mirrors

Verify all lights, including headlights, taillights, turn signals, and brake lights, are working properly. Check that your mirrors are positioned properly.

● Headlight ● Auxiliary lights ● Switches
● Taillights and brake lights ● Turn Signals ● Mirrors

Oil and Other Fluids
Check oil level, coolant, and brake fluid for leaks and proper levels.

● Levels ● Leaks

Inspect the frame and suspension for cracks, bends, leaks, excessive rusting, or loose bolts.

● Suspension ● Chain, driveshaft, or belt ● Frame

Check the condition and operation of your kickstand, and center stand if you have one.

● Side stand (kickstand) ● Center stand

This is just a brief overview. For a more detailed checklist and instructions, download the T-CLOCS Inspection Checklist from the Motorcycle Safety Foundation website.

T-CLOCS doesn’t take long, but it can make a world of difference. Make it a habit before every ride, and enjoy the peace of mind that comes with knowing your motorcycle is ready for the road.

Bonus tips:

  • Print the T-CLOCS checklist: Keep a copy handy, laminated for durability, and use it every time you ride.
  • Incorporate it into your routine: Make checking your motorcycle part of your pre-ride ritual, just like putting on your helmet and gear.
  • Get help if needed: If you’re unsure about anything, don’t hesitate to consult your motorcycle manual or seek help from a qualified mechanic.
  • Consider carrying a small toolkit and a tire pressure gauge in case you need to make minor adjustments on the go.

Your safety is your responsibility. By taking a few minutes to perform a T-CLOCS inspection before each ride, you can help to ensure a smooth, enjoyable, and most importantly, safe journey on your motorcycle.


Remember that insightful talk from Patrick of Law Tigers at our October Chapter meeting? Patrick stressed the importance of gathering as much information as possible at the scene of a motorcycle accident, as it can significantly increase your chances of a successful claim. So, if you’re ever in an accident, don’t forget to document everything you can!

Stay put after a motorcycle accident, unless immediate medical attention is crucial. If possible, check others for injuries and offer first aid. Call emergency services (ambulance and police) as needed. Alert approaching traffic with caution signals (hazard lights, bright safety vests).

After a motorcycle accident, gather identifying information from everyone involved:

  • Full names, addresses, and phone numbers: This includes all drivers, passengers, and witnesses.
  • Vehicle information: Note down the make, model, year, and license plate number of all vehicles involved.
  • Driver’s licenses and registrations: Record the driver’s license number and state of issuance for each involved driver. If possible, get a copy of their vehicle registration.
  • Insurance details: Write down the insurance company name and policy number for each vehicle involved.

Try to collect witness information in addition to driver details after a motorcycle accident. This includes:

  • Names, phone numbers, and addresses: Get contact information for anyone who witnessed the accident.
  • Brief written statements: If witnesses are willing, ask them to write down a short, factual description of what they observed, focusing on key details like vehicle movements, traffic signals, and potential contributing factors.

After a motorcycle accident, limit your discussion to factual details with the investigating officer. Focus on providing an accurate account of the events without speculating on fault or blame. Do not admit liability, even to the officer. Remember, anything you say can be used in the investigation, so stick to the facts and avoid expressing opinions or apologies. If you sustained injuries, consult with a qualified legal professional before making any further statements. Ask the investigating officer to provide you with his or her business card and the incident number so that you can obtain a copy of the accident report.

Immediately after a motorcycle accident, document the event as best you can. This will help preserve valuable details for later:

  • Write down specific details: Include the time, location, weather conditions, road features (like traffic signals, lanes, etc.), and anything else relevant to the accident.
  • Sketch the scene: Draw a simple diagram showing the positions of vehicles, debris, skid marks, and other important elements. Remember to note the direction of travel for each vehicle.
  • Take photographs: Capture close-up and wide-angle shots of the scene, vehicles, and any damage. Include photos of traffic signals, skid marks, and other relevant details.

Once you have cooperated with the police and collected the necessary personal information from other drivers and witnesses, you may leave the scene. See your doctor immediately. Even serious injuries may not be apparent. Notify your insurance company of the accident immediately. Make sure you document this notification. If you fail to alert your insurance company of the accident, it may have grounds to deny any accident claims you file. Do not make any statements without first consulting your attorney.

If you receive any insurance claim documents related to a motorcycle accident, it’s important to handle them carefully. Do not communicate directly with the claimant or their insurance company. Instead, forward all documents you receive to your own insurance company immediately or to your legal advisor.

Avoid making any payments or promises of payment. This could negatively impact your claim. Do not sign any documents without consulting with a legal professional.

Uninsured/Underinsured Coverage

Patrick also wisely emphasized the importance of maximizing your uninsured/underinsured motorist (UM/UIM) coverage within your budget. This coverage protects you in two crucial situations:

  1. Uninsured Drivers: Unfortunately, many drivers operate without liability insurance. If you’re hit by one, it can be incredibly difficult to recover compensation for injuries, leading to significant financial burdens. UM coverage helps in these situations by providing financial support for your medical bills and other losses.
  2. Underinsured Drivers: Even if the at-fault driver has liability insurance, their coverage amount might not be enough to cover your full medical expenses, especially if you experience severe injuries. This is where UIM comes in. It kicks in after the at-fault driver’s insurance is exhausted, helping you bridge the gap and ensuring you receive proper financial compensation.


Here are some random fun facts that you may or may not know about motorcycles…

…They are completely useless, but perhaps you will find them entertaining nevertheless!

Keanu Reeves isn’t just dodging bullets on screen, he’s building badass motorcycles, too! Back in 2011, he and his buddy Gard Hollinger launched Arch Motorcycle, a company that churns out seriously cool, hand-built bikes.

More motorcycles vanish in July and August than any other months, quicker than ice cream cones at a kid’s birthday party! California is the land of stolen steeds. In 2020, a whopping 9,838 bikes went missing in the Golden State, almost double the number in Florida, which came in a distant second with 4,563. Looks like sunshine and palm trees aren’t the only things attracting unwanted attention in these states!

The Honda NR750 is considered one of the most complex commercially produced motorcycles ever made. In 1992, Honda “pushed the boundaries” on its 125 horsepower oval-piston V4 engine with eight valves per cylinder. The NR750 engine design was considered so complex that it was never used in another production motorcycle. The original price tag was around $50,000, making it one of the most expensive motorcycles of its time. Today, finding a well-maintained NR750 can cost upwards of $100,000!

The first Harley-Davidson motorcycle had a single-cylinder engine, sporting a top speed of 25 mph and using a tomato can for a carburetor. Q: What do you call a Harley-Davidson that can’t keep up with a tomato? A: Slow-ketchup!

The first Vespa scooter was created from spare aircraft parts that were actual pieces of landing gears from Mussolini’s airplanes. Because of the unique design, especially the front handle bars, and its sound, it was named Vespa, the Italian word for wasp. Not really sure which is faster – a Vespa or a wasp.

Motorcycles are fuel efficient. The most fuel efficient motorcycle is the Verucci Nitro 50, and can travel about 106.9 miles on a single gallon of gas. While it’s true this scooter sips gas like a hummingbird on sugar water, it will likely take you all day to travel that far.

The most popular brand of motorcycle stolen in the U.S. is Honda, like stealing all the candy from an unattended candy bowl at Halloween.

The record for the longest motorcycle jump belongs to Robbie Maddison, an Australian stuntman who achieved an incredible 346 foot jump on March 29, 2008. His motorcycle was a heavily modified Honda CR500X. His speed was 102 mph at takeoff and reached a jump height of 66 feet.

Ride. Seek. Explore.