Unrest At Harley-Davidson

Sex sells almost everything and paint jobs sell a lot of bikes. Through the Sheet Metal Exchange, Harley-Davidson is launching the Unrest Series Paint Set available now with a price from $2199.95 to $5,199.95. This theme paint job features Day of the Dead skull, tribal designs and helter-skelter Harley lettering over a matte black background on the tank, fenders, fairing and saddlebags. Limited in quantity to 200 sets and available only for one year, this show-quality paint set is hand-numbered for the ultimate in exclusivity. This set is available on factory-fresh sheet metal, or through the Sheet Metal Exchange Program.

The Sheet Metal Exchange program allows Harley-Davidson owners to install factory-quality, custom-painted sheet metal to older-model motorcycles. Under the program, an authorized Harley-Davidson dealer removes the undamaged sheet metal from an owner’s motorcycle and ships it to the Harley-Davidson Color Shop for application of original-equipment quality paint in cutting-edge designs by air-brush artists and pin-stripers. Turn-around time is about 90 days, and the cost is $200 to $600 less than buying the same paint set applied to new sheet metal. See an authorized Harley-Davidson dealer for details. (pictures copyright Harley-Davidson)

34 Responses to “Unrest At Harley-Davidson”

  1. 1 Gas Man Dec 23rd, 2010 at 10:06 am

    Saving $400 +/- and they have all my tins for 3 months. Plus the added cost of “an authorized Harley-Davidson dealer removes the undamaged sheet metal from an owner’s motorcycle and ships it to the Harley-Davidson Color Shop for application…” I wonder if they considered that last bit in their “cost savings”???

    Screw that! Especially for those south of the mason dixon.

    Cool paint but like any factory “custom” you’d be better off with a truely one off custom airbrush job done by a private artist/painter.

  2. 2 Knucklehead Dec 23rd, 2010 at 10:46 am

    Theres always a winer. Good for HD. Folks have been asking for this for years. Bout time.

  3. 3 zyon Dec 23rd, 2010 at 12:07 pm

    Does Harley even have an R&D department? People don’t want crappy flat black paint jobs with some lame graphics…they want innovative motorcycles that mark this generation’s motorcycle riders.

    The Only R&D Harley does any more is come up with new badges to label the same old motorcycles with a different name….

  4. 4 bigitch Dec 23rd, 2010 at 2:34 pm

    this is just what is needed….

    lets attract those who are into voodoo and the occult while we chase away the religious right who will believe that harley owners are devil worshippers.
    not that the general public thinks bikers are devil worshippers with this poser paint job. but is it the motor company’s intent to attract buyers by playing to cultural symbolism?

  5. 5 winterman Dec 23rd, 2010 at 2:43 pm

    90 days? Too long!

  6. 6 bigitch Dec 23rd, 2010 at 3:33 pm

    so i guess i/m being blocked

  7. 7 nicker Dec 23rd, 2010 at 3:45 pm

    The term “Hale Mary” comes to mind.


  8. 8 alan Dec 23rd, 2010 at 4:08 pm

    Too much for a flat black with pinstriping

    $500 to 1000 maximun

    harley dont know how to make money any more

  9. 9 J Dec 23rd, 2010 at 4:39 pm

    Tins from Ebay- $400

    Two cans of flat black from True Value- $8.98

    Six pack of beer for Bennie the local airbrush hero/surfer dude- $4.99

    Let Bennie number my tins “#1 of 1”- priceless.

  10. 10 QDAG Dec 23rd, 2010 at 5:47 pm

    90 Days, maybe being done in China? NO

  11. 11 NickD Dec 23rd, 2010 at 6:45 pm

    Kinda screams desperation . . .

  12. 12 Woody Dec 23rd, 2010 at 7:48 pm

    Very sad, on many levels. Sigh. Does it come with a free SOA Tee?

  13. 13 1550tc Dec 24th, 2010 at 12:17 am


    Two cans of flat black from True Value- $8.98,,,,,ah come on man…… step up and get the HD ones 🙂

    $2199.95 to $5,199.95. unreal what u get SOME OF the look at me look at me look at me HD RIDERS TO BUY

    Yeah Woody its really sad when think about what you can do to improve a stocker with $5199 and i wont even mention that E??? Place……. how much better the braking, handling, comfort and performing you can make a stock HD with $5199 of aftermarket parts

    lets start with stock 96:

    drop all the shit harley fluids even the brake fluid
    Pirelli tires
    decent full floating rotors rotors and pads
    corbin seat or le pera seat
    tw 555 cams
    slips on
    air cleaner
    fuel map and power commander

    i think we still enough $$$$ for J ‘s paint job and 1/2 ton”s box full of beer for Bennie

  14. 14 Wiz Dec 24th, 2010 at 2:49 am

    What’s with all this skull stuff? Celebrate Life, not Death! Death is certaian, Life is not! A positive outlook on life is allot more fun, negativity sucks! Been there for 53 years ‘an the last four have been wonderful since I changed my attitude. It works, try it out, whadda ya got to lose but a frown! Everyone have a Great Christmas!!! Wiz

  15. 15 Septic the Sceptic Dec 24th, 2010 at 6:51 am

    The Day of the Dead is a celebration of life. All the lives that have come before yours.

  16. 16 Dr Robert Harms Dec 24th, 2010 at 7:24 am

    The “Day of the Dead” . Wow. Is this the “Lowry Special” ? I have visions of the Consul on a Harley. No that is a scary vision.

  17. 17 SCOTT Dec 24th, 2010 at 8:26 am

    I could just turn my kids loose with some model car paints and little brushes, will cost about five bucks and I bet it has some wild color combinations in it.

    After thinking about that for a while I just might do it.

  18. 18 A DudE Dec 24th, 2010 at 8:53 am

    How much SKULL stuff can we have!!! some one have new idea PLEASE!!!!!!!

  19. 19 Larry R Dec 24th, 2010 at 11:01 am


  20. 20 Woody Dec 24th, 2010 at 12:22 pm

    I keep looking at it and feeling bad for Harley employees that this is what the “big people” could actually sign off on. Like seeing someone’s grandma go-go dancing to make the rent.
    I like Harley. I like the bikes, I like the branding, I like the tradition. That makes it even worse seeing this mindset from leadership. If you GAVE me that bike I’d have two major expenditures before I could ride it;
    1) The gift taxes & registration.
    2) Get it re-painted.

  21. 21 just my opinion Dec 24th, 2010 at 1:19 pm

    Does anyone know if the graphics are paint or are they stickers that have been cleared over? I would bet stickers. Either way I think the comments here pretty much tell the story. Nothing new or innovative here, just over priced BS from the top of HD that is so out of touch with the folks that buy their bikes. I wish Hd would stop trying to make money by doing stupid stuff like this and spend the time and resources to develope a bike these young guys will buy. If they don’t they better start looking for the next AMF

  22. 22 Woody Dec 24th, 2010 at 4:23 pm

    If someone rode up on one and said, “I did it myself” I’d be thinking, “shoulda stopped after the primer”. It’s actually painful for me to look at this story/bike. I like Harley. I like the bikes, I like the tradition, I hope they go another 100 years. I just feel so bad for the production people working there knowing they have to see this kind of mindset from the top, knowing their lives depend on people who would would actually sign off on this instead of rolling their eyes and moving on to the next meeting item. If Harley GAVE me the bike pictured, I have two major expenses before I could take it out on the road;
    1) gift taxes & registration
    2) re-painting

  23. 23 Woody Dec 24th, 2010 at 6:30 pm

    Just figured out who’s image that is on the tank-it’s Curious George!

  24. 24 1550tc Dec 24th, 2010 at 7:03 pm

    Woody man your a role……..thanks for putting me in the holiday, patron mode

    isnt day of the dead, right after Halloween and a big holiday in mexico

    day of the dead sounds like creative dept at hd mantra

  25. 25 Conrad Nicklus Dec 25th, 2010 at 12:01 am

    Way to be 15 years behind as usual, HD. This is all old looks and being more and more outdated daily. The price is absolutely outlandish and the look is nothing far from 3rd grade level, my little cousins could paint this. I mean seriously, step up the damn game if you want to be a competitor in the “custom” market. Go sit back in the million cubicles that you have there at HD headquarters and think of a way to make something that will actually be beneficial for the cost.

  26. 26 Wiz Dec 25th, 2010 at 5:37 am

    How about Bunnys ‘an Rainbows fer the next one? Wiz

  27. 27 Spot's Cycle Dec 25th, 2010 at 8:53 am

    i hate to say it but most of ya’ll are idiots. actually i don’t hate to say it

  28. 28 Woody Dec 26th, 2010 at 11:40 am

    Feel free to elaborate Spot, always ready to hear another point of view (as opposed to name-calling).

  29. 29 Todd8080 Dec 26th, 2010 at 3:49 pm

    If you want to be a totally unique and original trendsetter, do what all the other totally unique and original trendsetters do and paint your Harley flat black.

    I honestly think most of the people buying into this look don’t even know how it originated. It came from guys who were too broke to afford a paint job for their car or bike, but needed to keep it from rusting because it was their daily driver/rider, so they kept it primered. Adding graphics meant they’d officially given up on ever getting a real paint job.

    But I guess paying big bucks to have somebody deface your Harley is the RUB’s way of proving how “bad to the bone” and “old school” they are, ignoring of course the fact that by definition neither can be purchased.

    You want to show some true originality? Try putting some real miles on that Harley.

  30. 30 1550tc Dec 27th, 2010 at 12:37 am


    Go sit back in the million cubicles that you have there at HD headquarters and think of a way to make something that will actually be beneficial for the cost.

    lil do you what their doing????? here take look


  31. 31 Bigwoody Dec 27th, 2010 at 8:58 am

    Justy another reason Harley is in trouble, a hundred in materials ,severl hours prep,application of paint ,less than five hundred total. Individuality,None..

    Just more corpoRate greed. I’ll keep mine.

  32. 32 1/4 20 Dec 27th, 2010 at 10:19 am

    What were they thinking someone get the crack pipe out of old willys hand!!

  33. 33 TPEvans Dec 27th, 2010 at 10:30 am

    Jeez, can Harley do anything right? No, I mean to all of you. You want innovation – Kawasaki is waiting. So is Suzuki. All the high-revving weedeaters on steroids you can handle. As for me, I like a pushrod V-Twin and hope Harley and the damn EPA never do away with it.

    So you don’t like the paint job. Big deal. Somoebody else does.

    By the way, Harley has to make a profit. Kinda like everybody else that runs a business. If you don’t for long enough, you go out of business. I know – this seems to be a straightforward concept, but judging from the collection of comments that parrot-like uses the phrase “corporate greed”, I thought it best to go over it one more time.

    One more thing, there is no such thing as a corporation. It’s a legal fiction that allows for a large group of owners (called shareholders) to conduct business in an orderly manner. Harley-Davidson, Inc. is a piece of paper in a file cabinet somewhere. Harley is actiually every shareholder, employee, dealer and customer that derives their living and enjoyment from the product. So – bash Harley – bash the fellow on the assembly line, the dealer, and yes, management (the place don’t run itself).

    Do htey make mistakes? Are they human? Two yes answers will be marked correct.

  34. 34 Axel Jan 4th, 2011 at 3:51 pm

    I like satin(satan?) black. And skulls. Good taste never goes out of style.

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Cyril Huze