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photo by Paul Noble taken at last year's show ... (Easyriders Show 2015 is January 24th)

January 13th Edition

In This Issue:

Riding BE-cause - Charitable & Educational Events in the Carolinas

"This One's for Carlo" - a friend asks for help

Lil' Weather

Free Thinking with FancyFree

The Tarheel Tornado checks in

TCR Classifieds

(For Sale: Road King Trike & a Corvette too, Custom Roadglide + Trailer, Switchback)

Ron Lofts: Cold Weather Riding

Loose Talk with Jon


This One’s for Carlo

My name is Vincent Esposito, but this story isn't about me.  I have wanted to write stories for The Carolina Rider many times and send them in, but they would have been stories about me and experiences I had riding my motorcycle.  I never wrote those stories because I thought they would sound egotistical, and honestly, I didn’t think most people would care to read about a guy riding around on a 1983 Suzuki GS450A, the Suzukimatic.  This story is for my dear friend, Carlo Gagliardo, or Carlo G., as so many know him....

Carlo is the owner/operator of Carolina Cycle Service in Indian Trail, NC and is one of the best motorcycle mechanics anywhere around.  He is well-known and deeply respected by the entire motorcycle community around Charlotte, NC.  He is also the guy that single-handedly rebuilt my bike for me, from a $600 pile of barely running parts into a bike that draws stares everywhere it goes and can run the superslab with anything.  Nobody believes it is a 450 and nobody can imagine it is a 2-speed semi-automatic.  Carlo Gagliardo is truly a mechanic’s mechanic and a fabricator’s fabricator. 
Carlo is also a Champion Motocross racer and has been for over 20 years.  His legend and career  are so great that a DVD was made about him:  "A Day in the Life of Carlo Gagliardo."  If you don’t believe me, just Google it for more information.  You are probably asking yourself by now why did this guy write this story?  More so, you may be asking why The Carolina Rider has decided to publish it?  The real reason answer to both of those questions is because on Wednesday, January 7, 2015, Carlo's life changed forever.

After completing the rebuild on a bike's engine he proceeded to take the bike out for a test ride, like he would for any other repair he had done.  However, on this test ride, something went wrong, horribly wrong.  You see, Carlo rebuilt the engine, but the problem went wrong in the steering and witnesses say they saw the bike appear to jump.  All Carlo remembers is something broke in the steering and the bike went into an uncontrollable tank-slapper.  He lost the bike, flying off of it and Carlo’s body physically collided with a truck coming from the opposite direction.
Carlo suffered a compound fracture of one leg, severe lacerations and loss of muscle/skin from the other, multiple broken ribs, chipped vertebrae, a lacerated liver, and a collapsed lung.  He was rushed to CMC-Pineville before being airlifted to Carolina's Medical Center in Charlotte where he still is in ICU.  He has undergone several surgeries already and has more already lined up with weeks if not months of rehabilitation waiting for him.
As Carlo is a small business owner, he will be out of work for a long time and will obviously have a huge amount of medical bills.  Please help this pillar of the motorcycle and Motocross community any way you can.
We will be having a Benefit Ride for Carlo on Saturday, March 21, 2015.  It will begin at Iron Horse Motorcycles in Monroe, NC at 9am with the last bike out at 11am.  More details and information will be relayed as they are finalized.

If you are able to assist Carlo, donations may be submitted to:

If you are willing to assist with donations for or the organizing of the Benefit Ride, please contact Vincent Esposito through the GoFundMe link.  Thank you!


The Little Weather Quickie for the Greater Charlotte Area

for Week of January 13-20 2015

Wednesday 42 ice pellets, Thursday 47 chance of snow, Friday 52 clear, Saturday 56 clear, Sunday 57 m-cloudy, Monday 52 clear, Tuesday 52 p-cloudy (as per on 1/13/15)

The temp on my dash said it was in the low 40's outside and as I looked through the flop-flop of my windshield wipers clearing the day's mist away from view, he passed by. All in black, of course. Black bike and helmet, black jacket and black jeans or chaps; I couldn't tell which. Even his long scraggly beard was black. On that drippy cold day, all was kinda black and grey anyway; a greyscale landscape all around me: Winter.

I was snuggled up in my own warm layers but inside my four-wheeled, four-doored box with my thermostat cranked to 70 and the heated seats on. My bike was garaged and I wouldn't have even considered a ride that day. But he did.

He was on his way to or from work I'm guessing. A devoted rider, perhaps one without any cage. Unfettered and free he rides it all; the rain, the cold, the heat. The ride is all he knows and wants. A testament to what it's all about. He's The Carolina Rider and I'm so glad I got to witness his roll as he swept past at the light and turned down the ramp to the highway. Off on his ride ... his ride done his way.

He's The Carolina Rider ... and so am I ... and so are you!

Next Saturday the show comes to town. It's the Winter reminder for all in hibernation to not forget the ride. The photo above was taken by Paul of folks waiting out the fire drill that halted last year's show. Footloose and I were stopped by flu and didn't make it at all. Let's hope for a better time this year! In fact, let's MAKE it a better time this year!!

You know, Shaggy wrote about his dissappointment in today's shows compared to the edgy biker-filled parties of the past and he's got a point. But I wonder why participant and vendor attendance is down and the flavor has lost its spice? Can we bring back what's been lost?

Easyriders has dropped to a one-day event now. What used to be a weekend of wildness is down to a day of just quiet ease. Maybe that's it. Maybe, like warmed-over rock 'n roll that's been made into easy listening elevator music, maybe Easyriders has gotten too Easy.

Now I'm not calling for anything out-of-control here brothers and sisters. Let's keep it safe for us all. But why not let our hair down a little more this year? Why not make the only big biker scene of January feel a little more biker? Let's go to the show, damnit! Let's go and have some fun and be crazy and show our pride and joy in being FREE. Let's get out of our cages and find our own unfettered, scraggly-bearded, all-weather-riding biker selves! The Easyriders Show is our Winter chance to shine so let's get to it!

Where you gonna be January 24th?

Show us your Easyriders Spirit!

I know, I know, I might've gone a bit too bubbly here .. but I'm gonna be there and I'd love for you to be too. Several of our TCR writers are planning to appear and the new BIG RIDE 2 - The Phoenix will sit proudly for its first time in The Charlotte Convention Center. We're happy to still be here and able to attend. Come see us and show us your Easyrider spirit! .. if you impress us enough with it, we might give you a TCR Tuff!

I'm on Facebook ... "friend me!"

Happy New Year! Not much going on right now except trying to get 2015 off and running on the right track, and still getting excited about and making plans for Sturgis.

Looking toward Sturgis ...

The plan is to do Sturgis, then move on to the copper mines in Michigan (I love to prospect for precious metals and gems,) on to the Football Hall of Fame, the Rock 'n Roll Hall of Fame, and then on to the 60th Anniversary Tri Five Chevy Show in Bowling Green, KY. That should be a blast too. I only wish my own '57 Belair 2D HD was ready to roll in on its own for that one.

For all of you that are thinking about the 75th Anniversary in Sturgis this year, let me just say you better have your ducks in a row. My original prediction was 750,000 people. Based on what I am hearing and finding out about bookings, I probably should up that to 1,000,000. Everyone is telling me the demand is up a lot. Every RV park was booked solid for an RV my size by late October. I know, I was trying to find one, but I just got a lead on someone who is willing to let me stay in their yard.  I know at the big rally camp grounds around Sturgis, they will park you in there as long as they have space. It’s not like a normal RV park, it’s hard to determine when they are full, and with some you have to purchase ticket packages for the music events. Also, because of the demand, people I know that normally do not rent out their house, are doing so this year. They are getting $7000 and up for that week, ouch! By the way, I know someone who has their house for rent in Belle Fourche if you are interested? So unless you are very adventurous and don’t mind chancing sleeping under a bridge, you better get it in gear quick. Why don’t you give “The Carolina  Rider" a shout out and let us know what you are running into, and we can pass it on.

I enjoyed Windjammers Toy Run in Shelby last month...

The Toy Run in Shelby on Dec 20th was great. There was a good crowd even though it was expected to rain hard all day. I hung out with Shaggy, Bob, Jan , and Jon at The BIG RIDE 2. We served a good amount of hot coco that day, got to meet some really nice bikers, including Moon Pie of the Windjammers. I don’t understand why I did not run into RC Cola or Grape NeHi anywhere, but you never know?? Maybe next year? You know, last year the toy run was rainy as well, but again like last year the rain held off long enough for the toy run, must be karma? Anyway it was a great time. Many thanks to the Windjammers for supporting a good cause.

Good luck and good riding to all,


1996 ROAD KING TRIKE – 14,000 miles - Lady rider, Garage kept, Red/black. No reverse. $25,000.00  828-208-7579

1994 CORVETTE - White w/red interior - all original, 65,000 miles, garage kept, Extremely clean. $13,000.00  828-208-7579


2002 Custom Road Glide & Trailer - PRICE REDUCED: $23,900 with trailer!- One of a kind built by Camtech & tons of customizations: Custom House of Color Paint, Black with Candy Red Pearl host Flames, Low Miles, Diamond Cut Barrels, 88 punched out to 95 inch, Sachs Racing Head, 10:1 Pistons-Compression Releases, Cams, 42 Mikuni Carb, Wimmer Velocity Intake, Screaming Eagle Adj Push Rods, Fueling Lifters, FBI 2-1 hidden exhaust, Slash cut and tucked under bag, 6 piston front brake caliper, Metalsport Roxxy 26 inch Front Wheel, Camtech Stretched & Raked Front End, Camtech Stretched Tank, Custom Dash with Flush Gas Cap, Custom Chin Spoiler, Flared Side Covers, Camtech Stretched Extended Bags w/ LED Flush Integrated Signals/Brakes, Full Width Solid Fender, Sinister Drag Bars, Dakota Digital Gauges, Snakeskin Seats(Solo and Dual,) Custom Back Rest, Arnott Rear Air Rear Suspension with Handle bar controls, Flame Kick Stand/ Mirrors/ Grips/ Hwy Pegs, Banana Floorboards, Extended Rear Brake and Shifter, High Watt Stereo system & Speakers with Hand Grip Controls, & much more! Barry Pollack, call 386-212-3201

As seen in The Litigator 2013 calendar ... (Sorry, beautiful girl not included! ...)

Check out THIS Custom Chopper!

1998 Custom Rigid, 120CC Delkron motor - This is a great custom chopper, has many upgrades including, ape hanger handle bars, 5 speed baker trans, custom wheels, new tires, open primary, JB brakes and a chain drive. This bike screams with 120 hp and low miles. One owner. Call 704-236-9222 to see. Owner is motivated. $8500

Written in early December ...

The cold weather is here.  We’ve had temperature below freezing, and even some snow as far south as Orangeburg.  We’ve gone many winters without any snow and to have snow in the first of November is unusual to say the least.  I’ll just set out some things I do for riding in the cold weather...

Now, I know for some "cold weather" has different meanings.  For some there is no lower limit, for others it varies.  I will say for me my threshold is 40 degrees.  If it is raining I up that some to the 50’s, but basically going to and from work, only 13 miles one way, my lower limit is the 40 degree mark.

Upper Body

As such I don’t wear the typical insulated undergarments such as under armor or what I would wear for a longer ride or out hunting in Michigan for the morning.  But I do use layers, which is one of the important tips.  Other articles I’ve read also recommend the layering approach.  I try to use clothes that move moisture from the body and still provide warmth, such as a thermal fabric, fleece or wool.  I often use a moisture wicking shirt followed by a thermal shirt or sweater, or fleece.  I prefer the zip up one that I can zip around my neck and then unzip when I stop.  Then I often use my leather vest, it is hard to beat leather for wind and warmth.  I top that with a thin wind barrier of some sort.  I often use an unlined Harley jacket that serves the purpose and then top that with my leather coat.  That covers the top part.

Lower Body

I don’t have a windshield on my bike.  I know Bill (Orangeburg Cycle) Furr, drag racing champion, doesn’t like my bike because I won’t put even a small windshield on it, or footboards instead of pegs, but to each his own. He doesn’t have one on his racing bike either, although he does on his road bike.
For the bottom, I just use my jeans and chaps. Those have sufficed well.  I know some articles do not recommend denim because it isn’t waterproof or windproof, but the leather chaps cover and do well for me.  Many recommend a base layer, such as under armor or silk and then windproof, waterproof or leather pants, but the chaps seem to work for me.

Head and Face

The head is next and for me I just use my helmet.  I’ve tried the doo rag, and I know many people that wear one all the time to prevent sweat absorption in the helmet.  I haven’t found that comfortable for me, but it could be a help.  I do check to close the little vents.  I don’t notice them until winter and the cold air comes in.  I do wear a kerchief over my mouth and nose when it is in the 50’s and below.  That seems to work for me, but it does fog my visor.  I know many that use the full face helmet in the cold weather. My snowmobile friends in Michigan usually use a full face for that reason.  I’ve had full face and it does help, but the kerchief works for me.  Bill (Orangeburg Cycle) has the half helmet and wears the neoprene face mask which works very well.


The toughest thing is my hands.  I have ‘winter’ leather gloves that are lined and have a gauntlet and I also have some snowmobile gloves that are nylon and thicker.  I’ve ridden to Columbia (hour away) in the upper 40’s and they work well. I’ve been looking for something for rain, but haven’t found it yet.  I’ve been thinking of the Gore-Tex gloves I’ve seen in some hiking stores.


I’ve never had any trouble with my feet and just wear regular socks and my regular boots.
Of course if you have the heated suit, or heated gloves or even the heated hand grips much of this becomes a moot point....!

This Season is coming ... soon!

I just returned from New Orleans for some training, I have an MSF Class this week at Harley-Davidson of Charlotte, next week I have the Easyriders Show on Saturday and an MSF update on Sunday. The following week I will be in Detroit to help out Harley-Davidson. And this is the off season!

The point is for us all to make sure we have blocked off some riding time ... because if we don't life will pass us by...
Come see us at the Easyriders Show.

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