Grand Opening

On April 25 2011, I received this $14.95 part.  It was intended to enable me to mount an emblem in two unused (and unsightly) holes on the back of my $22,000.00 BMW R1200RT.


It is a piece of punched-out stainless steel with two threaded studs welded on.  The threaded studs are crooked and off center, with very sloppy welds.  In short, it looked like a 7th grade shop project that was in no way close to being worthy of being attached to a $20K+ motorcycle.  I wasn’t merely disappointed; I was fuming.  I called the vendor and fully expressed my extreme displeasure.  Karen (the parts manager) brought me some degree of satisfaction when she agreed to refund the full purchase price, including the return shipping.

April 28, 2011 was my 55th birthday, and I was treating myself to a custom motorcycle seat from Russell Day-Long saddles in Shasta Lake, CA.  I planned on mailing the emblem holder back to Maryland as soon as I returned from my trip.  I departed mid-morning on the 27th.

The 1400 mile round trip to California and back (via the Pacific coastline) was without incident, and provided for a lot of reflection.  One of the decisions I made during that trip was to contact a local machine shop and pay them whatever it would take to produce a part suitable for my purpose.  I even thought about producing a couple of hundred of them and advertising them in the BMW Motorcycle Owners News magazine.  I decided to keep the 7th grade shop project as a great (albeit ugly) source of inspiration.

After 3 years and four months of sporadic spurts of diligence separated by extended periods of procrastination, here we are.

August 21 2014 is a VERY big day for me.

August 21, 2014 by David Hammond