Ok, here's the deal...in 2003 I'm leading a creative meeting at work. We're doing this exercise writing down answers to questions about ourselves. One of the questions is, "What is something that most people don't know about you?" I pondered it and shared that deep down I wanted a big ol' motorcycle. That exercise in that meeting germinated a little seed that just wouldn't stop growing in me! And now nearly a year later in '04 it's a reality!!

I also jokingly (or not) tell people, "I'm 39...I'm in my mid-life crisis...which means a motorcycle or an affair. I consulted with my wife and both of us agreed that the bike made the most sense."

The bike is a Suzuki Intruder Volusia, or "Volusia" for short. The name comes from the Florida County that's home to Daytona Beach and Daytona Bike Week.

Once again, wife Sandra reinforces her sainhood status by being into this whole crazy thing. I'll readily admit there's nothing pragmatic, practical or sound about getting a bike. That's ok, because this desire came out of my emotion and soul, not out of my brain. Something in me needed something less tame in my life. Reading Wild at Heart by John Eldredge only poured fuel on the fire.

As a member of a church staff I'm also thirsty to get in some less "churchy" relational orbits....
Just road the bike home from Marion. Happily greeted by Meg & Slate.

Beautiful Sandra snapping the pic. Yes, I had "perma-grin" for a couple days straight!

The Volusia is patterned after the classic Harley Davidson "fatboy"
this is a Harley "fatboy"
This bike is classified as a "mid-sized cruiser" as its engine is 805cc...but i's got plenty of juice...

After  1 week I upgraded to larger saddlebags pictured here.
Yes, Slater, SOME DAY but for now dream on! Meghan loves to go for rides.

It handles BEAUTIFULLY around winding country roads...
One of the things I love about this bike is the big ol' classic rear fender & pipes.  (removed the "Suzuki" logo on fender & the plate frame--also got larger bags)
The "extras" on the bike are:
- windshield
- light bar (small extra lights on front)
- sissy bar
- saddlebags & bag supports
I got a great deal from Reality Motorsports in Marion IN. Little family-owned Suzuki dealer--great people, treated me great.

I tried other dealers in the area but no one came close on price and treating me well.
All the other Japanese Co's build mid-sized cruisers. The reason I went with the Volusia is it's the only one who's physical size of the bike has the same wheel base as the Harley.

As you can see from this shot, the tank is FAT, the bars are wide & the bike feels very BEEFY & substantial. 

It's a mid-sized cruiser that rides like a bigger & more expensive bike. Having ridden bigger bikes this doesn't leave me wanting...
my "gang" is about TWO things ;-)

1. riding bikes

2. riding to cool coffee shops to hang out

my "brain bucket" ...
a Vega shorty  
I always wear a helmet
Vega helmets
the Volusia page
Stock forward controls not as far forward as many would like. I got a set manufactured by a Volusia owner from John's Kits  (who also makes lowering kits) for a "song" complete with instructions that even I could follow. Big improvement in leg-room & overall comfort. It moved them forward 3 1/2 inches.
Kuryakyn shifter & brake covers compliments of bro Jameson & Danette on my birthday!
The family got me this HJC Von Breaker CS- 12 helmet for my birthday! It makes a HUGE difference on cool 50 degree days.
And even matches the bike ;-)
Sandra got me the Crafsman bike jack (see review) for my '05 birthday--GREAT gift. Very handy for oil changes & just general cleaning. List is $99 but it can be had on sale for $79 or less.

Another great tip is to be a member of the Sears Craftsman Club which allows you special Craftsman tool discounts. It's FREE to join, simply call 1-800-682-8691.

Also seen here on the front forks (below turn signals) are the National Cycle chrome lowers. They help reduce wind buffeting around one's head. You can also by clear or tinted lowers but I like the look of the chrome.
Installed Kuryakyn Iso-grips.

Had to use the dremel tool to open up the ends to put the stock end weights back on.

These are very comfortable--a noticeable improvement over stock.
Installed new Harley Davidson fork reflectors.

Removed the round "bicycle" style reflector (cut off the brackets w/Dremel tool).

Pick them up at your local HD shop.
New visor for the headlamp.
($8 at local Honda shop)