Wired The Wireless

Mr. Slow wants us to communicate when we are riding together. I want my tunes when we’re cruising. The two don’t intermix well. Helmet speakers make your tunes sound like they are being broadcast from the local bar’s urinal; BT helmets are expensive and the ChatterBoxes have proprietary plugs, which could be modified with the pinout I have acquired, but the whole mess just seemed to be not worth it. I have a GPS mounted to my bike, because I do get lost more often than not and I like to ride with it, since my speedo is off and it tells me my actual speed. I am also a curious kitten. I like statistics and modal averages. And my GPS fulfills that need for numbers, when I feel the urge.

My Droid X can do all of these things, with the right adapters and software. It also takes care of the switching between incoming phone calls (which in my case will be sent straight to VM). The Droid X does this very well, by pausing your playback and crossfading the volume (as you have it set for the individual sources) to the call.

Droid X Cradle-Case Setup

The Case: Trident Kraken in red for Droid X; The Cradle: RAM Adjustable Finger Grip Holder

My chosen setup consists of the Trident Kraken, a ruggedized two-part case (hard shell split case with a soft silicone skin/bumper) which is weather resistant and keeps dust and grime out of my phone; and the RAM Mount Adjustable Rugged Universal Finger Grip Holder Cradle (part number: RAM-HOL-UN4U).

All I need now is a USB-to-Powerlet coiled cable in just the right length (so it won’t touch the bike’s painted tank cover or put unnecessary pressure on the plug) or maybe I’ll just go with a battery harness instead and leave the Powerlet outlet free for charging, tire inflation or powering/charging the occasionally carried gadget.

Powerlet Plug

My panel-mounted low-profile Powerlet 12V outlet with the flexible and rugged Stubby Powerlet-To-Cigarette Socket Adapter and a standard micro USB car charger. This obviously isn't going to work long term.

The whisper-capable, sniper-grade throat mic has shipped on Monday and I am waiting impatiently for it to come in. Mr. Slow wants to see how well my chosen option works and if it turns out to be satisfactory to his picky standards, he will want one, too.

I already have the signal splitter to use separate devices for audio and microphone, which work great, according to Mr. Slow’s recent test. This will take care of three major issues I’ve been having with bike-to-bike communication setups: The speakers are crap for anything other than voice or gadget announcements (think GPS routing or radar detector warning beeps); I can’t wear hearing protection; and the microphones are practically useless over anything but the most relaxed of cruising speeds.

Fortunately, I talked Mr. Slow out of buying another set of communicators or two Bluetooth enabled helmets, which leaves me with the same problem of crappy sound, unless the setup lets me use my Big Ears stereo plugs, which most of them don’t. The ones that do (think StarCom, for example) are hideously expensive (but I know, eventually the hubby will want the StarCom unit, for a more technophile-esque integration of all of our must-have gadget needs and I am cool with that, but not at this time, where so much other stuff has priority).

Husband Buys Crotch Rocket In Desperate Attempt To Keep Up With Wife

This is Em Alicia reporting from Augusta, GA where a local area man, who previously thought of himself as the cruiser type, goes to the nearest motorcycle dealership and trades in his 2009 Kawasaki Vulcan 900 SE he had just acquired in January of this year and his wife’s 2008 Harley Davidson Sportster 1200 Low to get his sweaty hands on ‘something bigger’ to keep up with his spouse of 13 years who rides a 2009 Suzuki GSX1300R Hayabusa.

The husband declares, with a slight shrug, that his wife has turned into a speed demon and if he ever wanted to see her again he would have to go to extreme measures. After the trade, he finds himself the proud owner of a 2009 Kawasaki Concours 14, which, as industry insiders tell me, is based on the power plant of Kawasaki’s Ninja ZX-14, retooled with a shaft drive and added amenities for the long distance tourer, but is still just a ‘crotch rocket’ with hard bags standard.

The wife is fairly happy at her spouse’s move as she is not ‘held back by his slow ass on the interstate anymore’. Sources tell us that he also ‘quit cornering like gramps’ and put some style back into his riding. Reportedly, the wife is not embarrassed to be seen riding with her husband any longer, and peace has returned to the household while the family car, a Toyota Prius, sits in the driveway untouched since this story began.

The same undisclosed sources also inform us that the speed limit has not been observed by the husband who formerly scolded his wife for going way too fast on her Hayabusa. It looks to us as if the husband’s male ego needed to compensate for the previous lack of power and top end speed. This story, again, shows that even though men like their women fast won’t admit it until they have a way to keep up.

We will report back to see what happens after the husband gets out of his break-in period which carries a hefty restriction to 4000 RPM for the first 500 miles. The local cop shop is no doubt looking forward to that time, since two-for-the-price-of-one ticket writing is efficient, saves the tax payer money and will ensure that the city of Augusta will not go into bankruptcy any time soon as long as the local crotch rocket jockeys are doing their civic duty.