Motorcycle Madness.

After 9 months away from motorcycling I recently bought a used Indian FTR1200:

I loved the styling, the 1200cc engine… This bike was perfect because the previous owner added a tail delete, Corbin seat, custom mirrors and custom exhaust. All the mods I would have done… but in this case all I have to do is ride it!

The FTR was for sale just down the street from Tampa Bay Solar’s new warehouse on Adamo Dr. in Brandon. I had been haunting the dealership to check it out for the past month or so… this is the coolest looking bike I’ve ever owned.

All the torque on the FTR 1200 is below 100mph. This Indian is for cruising, not fleeing law enforcement. The seating position is upright, the V-twin engine is a bit loud… but overall this is a very easy bike to ride all day over the country roads up around Dade City.

The 1200cc’s FTR engine gets off the line fast, but not like a crotch rocket.

4rth gear is real fun… it takes you from 40mph to 80mph RIGHT away!

Sold my last 2 bikes after my accident in January :::

(Harley Davidson Nightrod on LEFT, Kawasaki ZX-14R on RIGHT)

The “Green Machine” Kawasaki ZX14R had 200hp and topped out at 186mph. STOCK.

1,440cc engine… almost the size of a car engine, really.

Fastest bike I’ve ever owned. Started to go 160mph on the highway, on a regular basis.

NOT a comfortable bike, crotch rockets never are.

4rth gear in a ZX-14? I would look down and realize I was going 140mph!

Many times I found myself going 160 to 175mph on this monster… and I really don’t think I ever rode it to the 186mph redline. It was easy to run out of road at that speed!

There is a specific level of insanity to riding any machine this fast, but I’m glad I owned it.

2017 ZX-14R… lotsa YouTube clips about the ZX.
Check out that Faux Alligator seat!

The black Harley VROD was a fun bike, too LOUD to ride without earplugs. Porche designed the engine!

The Nightrod / VROD is a really fast cruiser, and you can’t beat the LOOK of the bike, with that massive rear tire, straight pipes, and the low seat stance…

The VROD / Nightrod was a unique bike, lotsa power, weighed a chunky 670 pounds. One of the very few liquid cooled Harley’s, it rumbled at idle and roared at full throttle. It was the heaviest bike I’ve ever owned, and it nearly killed me in January of 2021.

Took this pic in Ybor City, downtown Tampa:

(2014 Harley Davidson Nightrod with 1200cc engine)

Before the Harley I owned a Kawasaki Vulcan. Great starter bike! With 650 cc’s it ran like a lawnmower, VERY easy to ride and control. The exposed rear shock spring is a cool design element on the Vulcan.

I bought this bike for $4,000 and traded it for $4,800 a few months later!

Had the Vulcan and a Honda CB1000r at the same time:

(650cc Kawasaki Vulcan and 1,000cc Honda CB1000r)

I rescued this 1978 Honda from a barn and rode it from 1996 until 2015. Pretty slow at 400 cc’s, had drum brakes in the rear… very much obsolete technology.

(1978 Honda Hawk.. rode this 400cc dinosaur until 2015)

Rode a 2013 Honda CB1000R for a few years, Honda makes a stellar bike, loved the one sided swing arm:

(2013 Honda CB1000r)

The Honda CB1000r was the first MODERN bike that I’ve owned, and it went like scalded spit!

My first 2 bikes were purchased in Taiwan when I lived there in 1995. They were both smaller than 250cc’s, just barely above scooter power.

I bought a 250cc Yamaha for my daughter Grace a few years ago… she went as far as getting her license, but on her first ride she took a turn too wide, wiped out in the grass, and vowed to never ride again!

That was Grace’s first and LAST motorcycle crash, she was NOT injured that day, just traumatized.

(2013 Yamaha 250cc Vstar + Grace)

Later on my girlfriend Winni bought Grace’s Yamaha and learned how to ride on it:

(2013 250cc Yamaha Vstar + Winni)

Winni was just shy of 5 feet tall, so she needed a lighter bike with a low seat height.

We dated in 2019 and 2020, fyi. She dumped me, but still has the bike… I don’t know how much she rides anymore, she’s no longer in my life.

Oh well.


The key to riding safely is to wear the right gear and be really careful when you’re out in traffic.

Don’t have pics on every bike I’ve owned, but wish I did.

Stay safe out there!

Ben Alexander

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