On the road, I never stop at any of the H-D boutiques I fly by, unless I need an oil change or a part. I’m an oil-change fanatic in the sense that at every 5,000 miles (8,000 km), the old oil and filter gets dumped, no matter where I am. I use synthetic oil – anything but the H-D brand when I do it myself. After all, the engine in my bagger is air cooled, and the proven high temperature protection against oil breakdown provided by synthetic oil versus dino oil gives my engine all the heat protection that it needs.
Volumes have been written about the differences between synthetic versus dino oil. Early on in the motorcycle synthetic oil debate, mechanics would declare synthetic oil to be “too slippery” for the H-D evo and twinkie engines and their bearings, and thus “bearing skate” would occur. That statement was, and still is, a complete crock of shit, of course. Synthetic oil works just fine, and in fact, H-D now sells its own brand of synthetic oil which comes installed from the factory in many of their newest engines. How times change.
I must give the H-D dealerships their due. In most instances, their service departments will take a traveler just riding through and give him priority for things like tire changes in the event of a flat, or an oil and a filter change. My last flat tire was down south in New Mexico a couple of years ago. I got priority then in Santa Fe.
I was in and out of Winchester’s H-D boutique dealership in an hour, which gave me time for a sandwich in their deli. Not bad, since the deli was completely unexpected.
To make it all easy, I use H-D’s atlas for an annual up to date listing of dealers in all of the western hemisphere. Handy as hell.
My only wish is that indy’s would provide some kind of a listing of their locations, but of course that’s an impossibility. I would prefer to use and support an indy and his business if I could.