’Tis The Season

Tis the season for Thanksgiving. And Christmas. And an abundance of cooking and eating. And Christmas banquets. And Christmas decorating. And Christmas shopping. And wrapping gifts. And exchanging gifts. And traveling in cases. And…….

It is a very busy time of year. However, with a few exceptions for those fortunate enough to live in a climate conducive to year round riding, there aren’t many opportunities to enjoy two / three wheel therapy in this season for most of us. With that thought in mind, what do we do as part of the Azuza StreetRiders when we are unable to ride?

I want to encourage each of us to think “outside of the box”. Please remember that the focus of Azuza StreetRiders is to be witnesses and soul winners for our Savior. It is very easy to recognize our motorcycles as being one of our best tools to “break the ice” with other motorcyclists, but the motorcycle isn’t our only tool. I would encourage each of us to discover and implement other approaches to reach lives while not on our motorcycles. This season brings the perfect “excuse” to take an extra step and consciously go out of our way to show ourselves friendly, caring, and loving. May we be reminded of John 3:35. “By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.” It is imperative that we reflect the love of God to those outside of our church buildings AND to those within. I have recognized that people may or may not remember what we ride. They may or may not remember our name. They may or may not even remember the name of the motorcycle ministry that we are a part of. However, they WILL remember how they are treated and any emotions that we stir within them. Our words and actions will also reveal to them our true being. Beyond that, our words and actions show them who, or even what, we serve. So, once again; “By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.”

While Azuza StreetRiders is certainly the “Apostolic Motorcycle Ministry of Jesus Christ”, please remember that we are called to be witnesses even beyond the motorcycle community. We must reach EVERYONE within “our world”; even those who don’t have the slightest interest in motorcycles. While we continue to put forth efforts to reach those within the motorcycle community, we must not lose sight of the “big picture”. Luke 14:23 instructs us to “Go out into the highways and hedges, and compel them to come in, that my house may be filled.” This instruction certainly includes but is not limited to motorcyclists. Although our motorcycles may not be our most effective tool during the winter months (for most of us anyway), we can ill afford to take time off from attempting to pull souls out of the grasps of Hell. We must continue to work while it is day.

I am confident that we have all heard and are hopefully making a conscious decision to be thankful every day and not just on Thanksgiving. Hopefully, we all recognize that the true meaning of Christmas is to set aside a day in each year to reflect upon the birth of Jesus Christ even though we continue to put Him first in our lives 365 days a year. However, I want to encourage each of us to remember that we are called to be witnesses year around; not just during “riding season”. With this in mind, I have been reminded that even during ’Tis The Season, I must be busy for the Kingdom.

Merry Christmas!!
Michael Luttrell
Secretary
Azusa StreetRiders International

Ten Steps to Winterize your Motorcycle

If your idea of storing your bike for winter is just throwing a cover over it, you may be in for some nasty surprises come spring time. The last thing you want to find out when riding season starts is that your bike won’t, so use these tips to make sure your bike is as ready as you are when it’s time to ride!

We may not want to admit it, but winter is just around the corner. And as the air cools off and the snow starts falling, most of us begrudgingly store our bikes and impatiently wait for spring to ride again. I try to ride in the winter if conditions are good for riding.

But storing your bike in the winter isn’t as simple and just throwing a cover over it and hopping in the car. In order to keep your motorcycle in top running condition, there is some work that needs to be done before storing it for several months (talk about adding insult to the injury of not being able to ride!)

However, if you properly get your bike ready for winter storage, it’ll make getting it running again when the riding season begins a whole lot easier, and prevent any unwanted surprises such as dead batteries, corrosion, and rust spots (or worse.)

Depending on what kind of motorcycle you ride there may be different things that will need to be addressed, but there is some general wisdom on how to get it ready to be stored for the winter. Your main enemy during winter storage is damage from moisture, so most of our winterizing efforts will be aimed at keeping that away from your bike. In addition, well give some love to your fuel system, battery, tires, and all your moving parts as well.

With just a little prep work using these ten simple steps, you’ll save yourself a lot of time and hassle come spring time, and your bike will be ready to hit the road as soon as you are!

1) Surface Prep

Washing your bike when nobody will see it for a few months anyway can be a drag, but giving your bike a thorough cleaning before storage is important; letting bug guts or water spots sit on your paint can corrode the finish permanently. Wash your bike and dry it completely to get all the moisture off the surfaces (an electric leaf blower is a great way to get all the nooks and crannies really dry.)

Add a coat of wax, which will act as a barrier against moisture and rust. Finally, spray exposed metal surface with WD-40 to displace all moisture (fun fact: the WD in “WD-40” stands for water displacement) and to give them a protective coating against corrosion.

2) Change Oil and Filter

Change your oil and filter. It’s better for your lubrication system to have fresh oil sitting in it for several months than to have used, broken down oil in it, not to mention the last thing you’ll want to do when riding season begins is change the oil before you can go ride. Using a winter weight oil like 5W30 can help it start up easier come spring time as well.

If you’re going to be storing your bike for a long time (4-6 months or more) you will want to protect your engine’s internals against moisture by coating them lightly with oil. You may not be able to see it with your naked eye, but the cold winter air is perfect for moisture to gather in your engine and cause rust to form on your pistons and cylinder walls.

In order to do this, remove the spark plugs and put a little squirt (about a tablespoon) of engine oil into the holes, then turn your engine over a few times to coat the cylinder walls by spinning the rear wheel with the bike in gear. Once everything is coated, replace the spark plugs.

3) Lube Moving Parts

Keeping moving parts lubed during the winter will help keep moisture from building up on them and causing any rusting or binding. Any part of your motorcycle that needs to be lubed at any point should be lubed again before storage. Some parts to check are: chain drive, cables, controls, fork surfaces, and any other pivot points.

4) Prep Fuel System

Gas tanks have a tendency to rust when not in use, and untreated pump gas breaks down and becomes gummy over time. To prevent rusting and make sure your fuel is ready to run after a few months in storage, you’ll want to fill your tank completely with fuel treated with a product like Sta-Bil Fuel Stabilizer.

On your last ride of the season, stop in at the gas station nearest to where you will be storing your bike and add the proper amount of fuel stabilizer, then top off the tank. A full tank will keep moisture from building up on the tank walls, and adding the stabilizer before the short ride home will help mix the gas and stabilizer together and run it through your fuel system before storage.

Note: Another method that some advocate is to drain the tank and fuel system completely. This is more troublesome to do, and requires that you treat the inside of the tank with fogging oil to prevent rusting. This method may be preferred for very long-term storage (6 months or more), but for winter storage, a full tank of treated fuel is easier and completely safe to do for both carbureted and fuel-injected bikes.

5) Safeguard Battery

Batteries have a tendency to self-discharge when sitting over time, especially when they remain hooked up to the bike. The easiest way to combat this is to hook up a battery tender like the Battery Tender Super Smart Junior which uses smart technology to monitor the charge and keep the battery topped off without overcharging. Normally you should pull the battery from the bike for storage, but with a smart tender you can also connect the tender with the battery left in the bike. Before doing this, make sure the electrodes are clean and corrosion free; if necessary, clean them off and give them a light coating of grease.

6) Protect Tires

If your tires are left to sit in the same position all winter long, they could develop flat spots. Keeping the tires off of the ground will prevent this, so if you have Motorcycle Stands, put the bike up on them for storage. If you don’t have stands, try to get at least the rear tire off the ground, or you can rotate your tires by rolling your motorcycle slightly every few weeks. If you need to leave your tires down on concrete, put a piece of carpet or plywood under them to keep any moisture from seeping into them.

7) Check Coolant/Anti-freeze

If you’ll be storing your bike somewhere that gets below freezing, make sure you have adequate levels of anti-freeze in your coolant system. This is very important; if you run straight water in your coolant system and it freezes, you could come back to a cracked head in the spring!

8) Plug Out Pests

Mice and other rodents are notorious for hiding from the cold inside exhaust pipes and making homes out of air filters. If order to avoid any furry surprises when it’s time to ride again, plug up your pipes. You can also simply stuff your air intake and the ends of your exhaust with some plastic bags – but do use bright colored bags or tie something to them so you don’t forget take them out when you fire up the bike!

9) Keep it Covered

With your motorcycle fully prepped for winter, invest in a proper motorcycle cover. A quality motorcycle cover will not only keep dust off the bike, but will keep the moisture out so it doesn’t get trapped underneath it, and create corrosion or rust. If you’re storing it outside, be sure to get a cover with tie downs to prevent it from blowing loose in wind. If you’re storing it inside you’re in much better shape, but you should still use a cover to prevent dust from building up on it.

10) Theft Protection

If you’re storing your bike outside, bear in mind that being parked unattended for months at a time makes it an easy target for theft. In addition to protecting your bike from weather, using a cover will conceal it from view, and securing it with a heavy lock and chain can give you some peace of mind. If youll be storing your bike anywhere it can be accessed by others, consider investing in some security measures.

With your bike fully prepared for a few months of hibernation, you’ll find that the winter is the perfect time to get done any maintenance or upgrade projects that you’ve had on your mind.

Now There is an 11th step here.

This isn’t what  I meant by “winterizing your bike”  (but hey, This can work)

Michael Theodore
National Road Captain
 

 

Coping With a Skid

A skid – that’s when your heart leaps
up to your throat because your
tires have lost traction!
You might hit a patch of sand on a
mountain curve, or a puddle of oil as
you’re slowing for a stoplight. It’s a
frightening experience on a
motorcycle, but you can handle it.
In a highway-speed, sand-in-the corner
skid, steer slightly in the
direction of the skid. (If you’re leaned
to the left and skidding to the right,
turn those handlebars a bit towards the
right.) Chances are you will clear the
patch of sand, the tires will grip the
pavement again, the bike will stand up,
and you’ll continue on your way.
Should you hit a slippery bit while
you’re braking for a stop sign, and one
or both wheels lock up, you want to
get those wheels rolling right away.
Release the brakes for an instant, then
reapply a little more gently. You want
those tires to have traction.
At higher speeds, when traction is
good and the rear wheel skids when
braking hard, do not release the rear
brake.
If your back end is skidding sideways
because the tire is on a slick spot
and simply spinning, ease off on the
throttle. A spinning wheel provides no
more control than a locked wheel.
You might be in one of those two mile-
per-hour parking lot scenarios, a
mild, low-speed skid when your front
wheel starts to go out from under you.
A foot on the ground may keep the
bike upright and the rubber side down.
This is not an easy thing to do, and
should only be done if all else fails.
Michael Theodore
National Road Captain

 

End of Year Sale at the Azusa StreetRiders Store

Now through December 31st every item on the AzusaStreet Riders online store over $10 will have a 25% discount  applied at check out or before the credit card is processed.

Note: This is new for us so if there is any problem or for some reason the discount doesn’t apply please contact Sis Theodore via email at laureen.theodore@azusastreetriders.com and we’ll get it taken care of right away.

Thank you and God Bless
Brother Thompson

Welcome New Members

Newest Chapter – Kirbyville, TX

New Members:
Pastor Malcolm Hennigan
Brother James Odom III
Sister Charlotte Dawes
– Kirbyville, TX

Brother Christopher Gilbert
Brother Brian Murphy
– Oxford, CT

Pastor Tim Downs
– La Porte, IN

New International Member:
Peter John Lujan
– Yigo, Guam

Robert Thompson
President Azusa StreetRiders International
The Apostolic Motorcycle Ministry of Jesus Christ
email: robert.thompson@AzusaStreetRiders.com
Cell: 305-525-4877

 

Newly Appointed Regional Coordinators

Please help me in welcoming the following new regional coordinators into their new positions! It is with great enthusiasm and faith in their abilities and burden for this ministry that we look forward to what the Lord has in store for us!! We will be updating the names and contact information on the website in a few days to be sure contact them personally to say hello and congratulation.

Rev Clarence Earp (Texas)
Rev Melvin Scroggins (Florida)
Rev Rick Perry (NE United States)
Rev Donnie Grider (Tennessee)
Rev Rodante de Guzman (Philippines)

Pastor Randy Hennigan
ASR National VP

Being Intentional

From my childhood, I have heard phrases like “the older you get, the faster time passes” or “time flies when you’re having fun”. Unfortunately, it has taken me a few years before I began to realize how fast time does indeed pass; regardless of fun or not.

We set alarms to wake up in just enough time to get ready and make it to work on time. We know just how much time is needed to get the kids ready and to school, how much time that we have for breakfast, and how long the drive should take to get to the office. It is not unusual that a calendar dictates our activities for each day. We can block it down to 15 minutes or 30 minutes to increase the efficiency of our time management for the day. We intentionally set aside time for the things that take priority; the things that we feel are valuable and important to us. Upon reviewing our schedules and calendars through those lens, would we be shocked to see the clarity of our priorities?

At the end of the day, whatever is left undone on the calendar or not checked off on our “to do” list is penciled in for attention on the next day. Life is busy and full of distractions in addition to our already busy schedule. It is so easy to allow our prayer time to become a stale laundry list, and our Bible study time to become intermittent, and to go through another day without witnessing or inviting someone to church. How many days has our Bible study been pushed back? How many days has it been since we marked prayer off our list?

I encourage each one of us to reevaluate the necessity and importance of our devotion and witnessing in our life. I suspect that each of us, if completely honest with ourselves, recognize the importance and can admit there are areas that offer room for improvement. I am convinced these improvements will only come through intentional forethought and planning. With intentional planning, our devotions aren’t limited to “if I have time” but can be intentionally placed into our schedules. Now prayer, Bible study, church attendance, witnessing, etc. has a purposeful place in our lives.

Please know that I am not suggesting that we need to turn our devotions into little more than a checklist. On the flipside, I am suggesting that if we want to be consistent and faithful in our devotion to Him, the first step is to make a conscious decision to be intentional.

Our devotion(s) deserve to be intentionally placed on our calendars and are important enough to be prioritized at the top of our lists. There needs to be that spot in our day that is marked out for uninterrupted time with Him. My Savior. My Father. My Friend.

Blessed to serve,
Michael Luttrell
Azusa StreetRiders, Inc.
Secretary

How I was introduced to ASR

I would like to introduce myself to anyone who doesn’t know me. I have been married to Bro. Michael Theodore (Bro. Theo) for 31 years. We have 3 children, Tiffany (McFarland), Michael Jr. and Nicole (Evans). Bro Michael was introduced to the Azusa Street-Riders in 2010 a month after our 19 year old son Michael Jr. was killed while on his way to swear into the United States Marine Corp. He was killed by a drugged up semi driver that crashed into the Marine car and killed the 3 young men in the back seat. Our son rode a motorcycle with us so we wanted to have a memorial ride. Our awesome Pastor (Scott Ardary) and son-in-law Mike McFarland came up with the idea to take my husband to a biker Sunday in southern Ohio where he met some ASR members including Bro. Beall. He had an instant connection and decided to have a memorial biker Sunday in memory of our son. That was the beginning of our love for the Azusa Street-Riders. We couldn’t be more proud of our children. Michael Jr. was part of the praise team at our church and had been to a ministers conference the week before he went to be with the Lord. Tiffany has been married to Mike McFarland for 10 years and have 4 children. Nicole has been married to Chad Evans for 5 years and has 2 children. They are all going to an apostolic church. Tiffany and Mike are ASR members. The first 4 years Michael was involved in ASR I was just kind of tagging along trying to heal while ASR was a part of his healing. The Lord put a lot of you in my life that were key to my healing and I love you beyond measure. Two years ago the Lord put this ministy in my heart and made a way for me to get involved along side of my husband. I am thankful that I was able to serve as the North Eastern ladies Chaplain and am now able to serve you all as your treasurer for this amazing ministry. I am looking forward to working with you all to grow this ministry and reach the lost. It’s all about saving souls while enjoying each others fellowship riding and reaching out to bikers. The Lord bless each and every one of you as we work together for the kingdom of God!
Sis Laureen Theodore
ASR International Treasurer

State Watch Motorcycle Legation

 

I am going to be posting something new in the rumblings newsletter each month which has to do with motorcycle laws and bills. I will be posting a few states every month. If your like me a motorcyclist you want to know what your state or other states are doing to help with motorcycle safety and motorcycle riders.

Did you know that some state’s have motorcycle -only checkpoints?
Hawaii
Bill HB 727 is in legalization that would authorize the state department of transportation to allow motorcycles and motor scooters the use of shoulder lanes when congested.
Massachusetts
Bill H 1917 flied by state Rep .Timothy Whelan (R-Brewster), would allow motorcyclist to proceed through red lights after stopping and “exercising due care,” if the signal is controlled by a vehicle detection device that is not triggered by the motorcycle.
Massachusetts
Motorcyclist are attempting to get the state’s mandatory helmet law repealed again this year, with S.1923 would do just that. The bill was introduced bt state Sen. Anne Gobi There was about 175 riders showed up at the state capital to lobby in favor of this bill.
Michigan
The state Senate voted to raise registration and training fees for motorcyclist. The annual registration fee goes from $23 to $25. Initial endorsement fees go from $13.50 to $16,and renewals from $5 to $7. The additional registration fee revenue will go to the motorcycle safety education program, while some of the endorsement fee revenue will fund a new program promoting motorcycle awareness.
Oregon
The Governor signed into law H.B 2598, which extends the offense of vehicular assault to include contact with a motorcycle operator or motorcycle passenger.
Pennsylvania
The state’s House Consumer Affairs Committee approved a measure that would cover motorcycles under Pennsylvania’s Automobile Lemon Law. H.B. 74, introduced by state Rep Pam Snyder would include motorcycles in the law’s definition of a “new motor vehicle” and require manufacturers to correct any defects that impairs the use, value or safety of the vehicle and occurs within one year following delivery, within the first 12,000 miles of use or during the term of the warranty, whichever comes first.
Pennsylvania
The state House passed H.B.831 which gives motorcycles processions the same rights as funeral processions. State Rep Mark Keller, the bill’s sponsor, said, “As an avid motorcycle rider who has taken part in many large group rides, said his legislation would bring group riders into compliance with the state vehicle code and make them safer for both the participants and other motorists.” If passed by the state Senate and signed into law, the bill would allow motorcycle processions to proceed through red lights and stop signs, control and direct traffic and bypass motorcycle-only checkpoints.
Minnesota
S.F.2405 would permit motorcyclists to split lanes on public roads within the state if the rider does not exceed 40 mph and travels no more than 15 mph faster than surrounding traffic.The bill was referred to the Transportation Finance and Policy committee.
Louisiana
Lawmakers have passed H.B.161, which provides exceptions to Louisiana’s anti-masking law, and sent the bill to the governor for signing. The bill exempts motorcyclist from the state law that prohibits the wearing of masks in public, except on holidays, such as Halloween. Motorcyclist in Louisiana said some overly zealous law enforcement officers have been using the anti-mask law to stop and cite bikers who were using face shields on their helmets.
Washington
A state law that bans the use of hand-held devices while driving a car took effect on July 23. Under the new law, anyone older than 18 may no longer hold a phone while driving,except to call 911 for emergencies or to activate or deactivate a call or select GPS navigation. Those younger than 18 already fell under those restrictions.
Nebraska
Nebraska  officials deployed eight trucks featuring safety messaging around the state as part of a 10-week program to promote motorcycle safety. The campaign by Nebraska Highway Safety Council was promoted by a spate of fatal motorcycle crashes this past summer. The state Department of Transportation, law enforcement agencies and motorcycle safety groups help with the campaign.
Michael Theodore
National Road Captain

 

Ridin’ in the Rain

 

Many, if not most, of us consider riding in the rain a necessary inconvenience when we’re caught out in it while going from point A to point B. The experience is frequently made more burdensome because of: inadequate riding gear, reduced vision of scenery and road hazards, loss of traction, increased navigational challenges, and fogged glasses and face shield—just to name a few. Often we discover too late that we forgot to pack defogger, rain mittens, Rain-X, or some other item critical to reducing the discomfort and increased risk of riding in the rain.

It’s my contention, however, that riding in the rain is often less pleasant than it really has to be, partially because we avoid doing it unless forced to ride in the wet. But like most of motorcycling’s other acquired skills, practice almost always leads to a better riding experience. In that vein, here are my top ten tips for improving your rain proficiency and, yes, even enjoyment:

Expect Rain: Even if the sun is out, and there’s not a cloud in the sky before leaving home, expect the possibility of rain during any ride that lasts more than a couple of hours. That means riders should almost always pack rain gear. And, by the way, most textile riding gear that says it’s rain resistant, or even waterproof, usually isn’t in a long, soaking rainfall. My rain gear is 100% waterproof and if I’m riding all day long in the rain 6 or more hours it the rain does find a way to creep in.

Trust Your Tires: One of the biggest phobias of inexperienced riders, once pavement becomes wet, is that their tires will rapidly lose traction. The soft rubber composition of motorcycle tires (especially compared to car tires) means that most of them retain about 80-percent of their traction on wet pavement. The presence of oil, antifreeze, or any one of a number of other chemical substances on rain-slick roads, however, can significantly compromise traction. If wet asphalt appears to have a reflective sheen, these chemicals may be present. One way to evaluate a road surface is to lightly drag the sole of one riding boot to determine if pavement is actually slippery. I must add that I forgot this my own practice what you preach stuff this summer. And  I laid my bike down one summer on fresh paved Wet asphalt. While riding in a storm. Came in contact with not one but two oil slicks.
Avoid Plastic Strips on Pavement: Pedestrian crossings and some other road markings are actually white plastic strips adhered to the concrete. These strips become slippery when wet. The same is true for metal road surface coverings, tar snakes, wooden planks at railroad crossings, and other similar road materials not made of asphalt or concrete. If these hazards cannot be avoided, then ride over them at a right angle, at moderate speed, with the bike perpendicular to the road surface.
Treat Your Face Shield: Recently On a face shield treated with Rain-X (which works better on glass than it does on plastic) or some other chemical that increases surface slipperiness, wind will largely clear the raindrops from view. It’s also not a bad idea to treat your shield before beginning any ride. If your shield fogs up, don’t open it completely, because that will enable rain to deposit on the inside, which is hard to clear without stopping and removing the helmet to do so. Make sure all helmet vents are open and only crack the shield slightly to increase airflow and exhaust condensation. There is anti fog spray for the inside of your face shield to stop fogging also.
Inspect Rain Gear Integrity: Over time rain gear can loose its ability to repel water. I learned this lesson once, the hard way, when my out dated rain gear began leaking during a daylong ride in heavy rain. The combination of riding wet in the wind caused me to lose body heat, become chilled, and then sick enough that I couldn’t continue riding the next day. Now I replace  worn rain gear and buy suits with heavier gauge material.
Be Visible: I will never understand why some companies make black rain gear, particularly the jacket. It’s hard enough to see riders in rainy, low light conditions without making them virtually invisible to human sight. If your rain gear top isn’t especially colorful or visible, wear a hi-viz vest over it. Because most other vehicles will have their lights turned on in the rain, reflectors also will improve other motorist’s ability to see and avoid you.
Slow Down: Although a relatively small amount of traction is lost on clean wet pavement, it still makes sense to ride more carefully in the rain by avoiding: (1) excessive speed; (2) steep lean angles; (3) close proximity to other vehicles and (4) aggressive stopping maneuvers.
Don’t Push Your Luck: It’s one thing to ride in rain, but quite another to ride into a thunderstorm or even a heavy downpour. If I listen to myself preach I would of not had that accident this summer. Because your riding risk factors are already heightened in rainy conditions, know when to get off the road and take shelter. Remember, your rubber tires won’t provide any protection in the event of a lightening strike and there’s nothing between you and flying debris picked up by high winds. Common sense should tell you when it’s time to “fold ’em.”
Practice: Here’s a radical idea: go riding in the rain, even when you don’t have to! As is true with most other motorcycle riding skills, practice improves ability, confidence, and enjoyment of the experience. The same is true for riding in the rain. Practice effective rain riding techniques close to home so they will be second nature when you need them on a road trip.
Learn to Enjoy the Experience: The rhythmic pitter-patter of raindrops, while ensconced in a warm dry cocoon, can be both enjoyable and relaxing. It only can be so, though, after mastering tips one through nine above. I’ve heard of some motorcyclists who enjoy rain riding so much, they actually look forward to rainy days in the saddle. Ok OK This is Me I like rain riding yes I’m a Nut a Buckeye nut LOL. I would ride to work almost everyday rain or shine.

Long story short, a rainy day doesn’t mean that your two-wheeled adventure has to stop being fun.

Michael Theodore

National Road Captain

 

Azusa StreetRiders Motorcycle Ministry ~ Official Newsletter