Will have the opportunity very soon, but until now I never rode a 30 inch front wheel bagger. But moto journalist and friend of the industry Horst Roesler did it for me. And for this test ride, both in the Blackwood Forest mountain roads next to Baden-Baden and on the German autobahn, he borrowed the new ultra custom bagger of builder Rick’s Motorcycles. So, was riding “Dirty Thirty” a challenge? Below a few of his impressions:
“Although the saddle is positioned low, when “pumped up” the chassis feels unusually high from the ground, ready to offer greater lean angles and to preserve the bags from scratching during sharp turns. At low speed, a combination of the bike high center of gravity with the immediate response of the front wheel with each small twist of the throttle, gave me an “Enduro” bike feeling. A feeling that is unlike what I have ever experienced on any Harley Big Twin Touring bikes. “Dirty Thirty” felt very light, very nimble. Around 80 km/h (50mph) the gyroscopic effect of the huge 30” front wheel becomes extremely present . The wheel stabilizes the ride quite a lot and Rick’s obviously has the practice to use that effect to ride his 30” bagger bike on very twisted roads where sport bikes have always supremacy..
On the autobahn, I pushed the bagger to 160 km/h (100 mph.) Even with some cross winds, “Dirty Thirty” felt very stable, offering precise handling but requiring greater and greater steering force at speed increases. I must mention that Rick’s being also an official Harley dealer, he is obsessed with his custom bikes keeping as close as possible to each Harley model handling characteristics. The custom rims he cut specifically for this bagger were trimmed of as much possible of unnecessary aluminum. So, handling of this same bike with heavier wheels could produce very different results. For a 30’’ front wheel bagger, Rick felt necessary to create his own 15-Inch rotors to accept 6-piston calipers.
At all times, I felt extremely safe riding “Dirty Thirty”. This 30” bagger and all its custom components have been developed to achieve TUV homologation for the fastest public roads on the planet, the ones of the German Autobahn.” Rick’s Motorcycles.