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American Iron MagazineAmerican Iron Magazine

American Iron Magazine #346

American Iron Magazine: Readers know why we are the world's #1 best selling magazine for American motorcycles. Published every 4 weeks (13 big issues a year), we keep you up on everything you need to know about Harley and Indian motorcycles! We cover the entire riding experience for you. Subscribe today for the latest new motorcycle and product reviews, news and views, real world do-it-yourself tech, customs and classics, as well as great tours and event coverage.

United States
TAM Communications
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13 Issues


access_time3 min.
new faces at american iron?

The life cycles of a magazine must be active and evolving to survive in today’s harsh print environment. We have a new opportunity every four weeks to pres-ent this publication in fresh and inter-esting ways. And as the final decision maker for the growing American Iron family of magazines, I feel our job is to educate and entertain our readers with high-quality editorial and attractive presentations.Easier said than done. I have been the editor-in-chief here since 1991, and I am fortunate to have worked with some of the best and brightest in the business. I feel all of our team has ben-efited from those that came before us. And that is the case once again.Last year, our longtime editor Chris Maida retired and moved south. While Chris continues to contribute…

access_time3 min.
everybody has one

There’s a funny cliché: I hope my widow doesn’t sell my bikes for what I told her I paid for them. And, of course, there are variations on that theme: cars, tools, snowmobiles, rare beer can collec-tions—just fill in the blank. Last weekend I attended an estate sale of a gentleman who fancied himself a motorcycle mechanic and rare beer can collector. After scrounging through piles of what I would describe as junk, I found a few morsels and set about the dance of negotiating with the guy’s heirs. The not-so-lucky family mem-bers tasked with liquidating what they also described as junk were the man’s widow and daughter.If you read my writing in American Iron Magazine, you may have figured out a few things about me. I like swap meets,…

access_time5 min.
daytona bike week giveaway bike, built by american iron magazine

YOU’VE SEEN THIS BIKE being built to completion in the pages of American Iron, and now you need to enter (if you haven’t already!) to win it. With Daytona Bike Week just around the corner, be one of just 4,500 entries in the drawing that will take place at noon on Saturday, March 18. Each ticket is $50, and for every two purchased, you’re awarded an extra entry! Purchasing a ticket to win this one-of-a-kind motorcycle is also tax deductible, as proceeds go toward the management and bet-terment of each Bike Week event. Woo! Head over to to check out the details on entering the contest and peep some sweet photos of AIM’s hard work in conjunction with Street Stuff in Norwich, Connecticut.Erik Buell Racing Debuts At The NYC…

access_time4 min.
conflict-free riding

With technology advancing by leaps and bounds in the automotive industry, to a point that manufacturers are designing and building cars with all kinds of protective sensors and the idea of driverless cars is becoming a reality, you might think that motorcycling would be safer. Personally, I remain wary; we’re not at that point yet.The idea of conflict-free riding with the emphasis on accident avoidance is a great one, but it seems mostly concentrated on drivers that are already in vehicles protected by a multitude of airbags, almost instant satellite communications if in a crash, crumple zones, roll cages, and more. Great for them, but how do we fit into the bigger picture of safety-orientated technology? Granted, engineers incorporate information and imagery of pedestrians, bicyclists, and motorcycles, but the movement…

access_time6 min.

Letters@AmericanIronMag.comKick It Old-School?I was wondering if your magazine accepts any pictures of old-school bikes. This is my 1949 Panhead that I built a few years ago, and I’d like to show off my work. I am 49 years old, and I went to MMI and WYOTech nine years ago. I have a small shop here in Michigan, just south of Detroit, which is a two-car garage that I work out of. I built this from the frame up and went old-school. I really like the look of the choppers from back in the day. Thank you.Ken DavanzoVia InternetSend us your photos and storyWe welcome letters on any subject, whether we agree with the writers or not. Electronic letters, both with and without photos, can be e-mailed to Photos should…

access_time8 min.

Harley-Davidson’s head design has improved dramatically with each engine since the inefficient 45" Flathead (sidevalve), which is the longest serving H-D engine (1929-73). This 750cc workhorse engine wastes much gas and burns even less of what enters the combustion chamber. As a consequence, the bike is slow. The head rocker cover shape is flat because the valves sit upside down (valve stems down, valve heads up) adjacent to the cylinders. Every other engine I discuss in this article has valves above the cylinder (overhead valves, also known as OHV), valve stems up, valve heads down. The valve stems ride on the cam lobes in the timing chest. The cam lobes open the valves into a channel that connects to the combustion chamber, hence the term sidevalve. There is no mechanism…