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Riding My iTrike With iTunes


Most people use an automobile for in-car entertainment, but another solution is a motorcycle. Today's ride on the trike through lower Westchester County, New York was especially enjoyable, because I listened to some great music from the Harley-Davidson MP3 player. The music came from iTunes, hence the term "iTrike Riding", and in this article I'll show you how it works. First I will review the motorcycling and digital technology involved, and then discuss some of the issues and implications.

The trike started out as a Harley-Davidson Ultra Classic Electra Glide - model FLHTCUI for Harley aficionados - and was then converted to a trike by the nice folks at Baer Sport Center in Honesdale, Pennsylvania. I have been buying bikes from the Baers for quite a few years and I trust them completely, and you definitely want somebody you trust to tear a brand new bike apart and convert it into a different vehicle. The conversion kits are made by Lehman Trikes, Inc., a Canadian company. They matched the H-D two tone paint scheme perfectly, and the trike looks like it was made to be that way from the factory.

Riding a trike is quite different from riding a regular motorcycle. It is actually more like driving it than riding it. You have to forcefully turn the handlebars in order to turn, as opposed to a very modest turning of the handlebars and leaning as on a two-wheeler. Turning on a motorcycle is actually a deep topic. If you are traveling at high speed and press on the inside of the left handlebar grip, the wheels turn to the right, as you turn to the left! Seems to defy common sense but it is actually true and the phenomenon is caused by precession. As with a gyroscope, when you try to turn a rotating object (the front wheel), you produce a force at 90 degrees to the direction of rotation. If you are interested in this, take a look at the write-up in the Wikipedia .