American Chopper, the end of a 10 year Saga

American-Chopper-Cast
From left to right, Paul Sr., Mikie, and Paul Jr. of American Choppers

Well tonight the last episode of American Chopper was aired and after a 10 year run, the show is finally over.

On August 13, 2012 I paid a little visit to Orange County Chopper and you can read a little post about it by clicking here. I will post extensive video on my trip to OCC later on.

The gist of this article is about the American Chopper show.

I will admit, I have watched the show for the past 10 years and have written several articles about it here in the Biker Law Blog. If you want to read my previous articles go to the search box on the top of the right sidebar and type in American Chopper. A list of the articles I have written will appear.

No matter what you or I think about the motorcycles Orange County Chopper and Paul Junior Designs built over the years, you have to admit, these guys out lasted most of the bike builders that I have become familiar with over the past decade. There is a long list of motorcycle builders including Jesse James who basically disappeared, all the while, Orange County Choppers and American Chopper continued plugging along.

I am not sure if the show was cancelled or the players did not want to be on the show anymore, it seems to me that their entire operation revolved around the show. Who knows if Orange County Choppers and Paul Junior Designs will survive without American Chopper? Maybe the Discovery Channel will do some kind of spin-off.

I am going to miss watching these guys build bikes. What is ironic is that I am I am sure all of you have gone though many things over the 10 years that American Chopper had its run.

I think that the years 2000-2010 consisted of one hell of a biker and motorcycle popularity craze, which the bad economy and other factors has ended. I have seen many acquaintances that I have ridden with over the past 10 years die in motorcycle accidents, disappear, or quit riding motorcycles.

So at least to me with American Choppers going away, it also signals an end of an era to me in my personal life and so on.

The good news is that the biker and motorcycle scene is still going very strong, albeit not as strong as years past. I am going to miss watching America Choppers and the dysfunctional family behind it building funky motorcycles. I am sure they made a small fortune over the past 10 years while entertaining us all.

Good by American Choppers.

  • If you or a loved one has been involved in a motorcycle accident anywhere in the State of California, call the real California Biker Lawyer Norman Gregory Fernandez for a free consultation at 800-816-1529 x. 1.

By California Motorcycle Accident Attorney and Biker Lawyer Norman Gregory Fernandez, © December 18, 2012

Day 36, Somewhere near Cleveland, OH

The United States Capital Building
The United States Capital Building

I have been on a RV vacation and trip of a lifetime for the past 36 days. I am presently sitting at the table in my RV in a campground somewhere near Cleveland, OH typing this update for all of you. It is now day 36 of my trip.

My last real update was on August 4, 2012 from the Washington DC area. I am giving another update now.

So far we have driven through or stayed in California, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina, Virginia, Washington D.C., Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, and Ohio. We have many more places to stay and drive through before we get home.

We ended up staying in the Washington D.C, College Park, Maryland area for about 11 days. Washington D.C. was an important stop for us, and with so many things to see, and such a great RV resort, we were in no rush to leave. We toured the Smithsonian museums’ and major monuments, among other things. I have tons of video that I will process when I get home and upload onto here.

The only negative part of the Washington D.C. trip was the hot balmy weather on some days, coupled with thunder storms and rain on other days, and the horrendous drivers in the Washington D.C. area.

My Harley Electra Glide enabled me to park near monuments and areas where people in cars just cannot go. On a few days Liz and I used the bus and train due to the weather. We also took the double decker tour bus for 48 hours as well.

The RV resort in College Park, MA was off of the charts. I went swimming every night with all of the other tourist. Hell on one night I found myself alone in the pool with 20 or so bikini clad coed girls from Europe. I could not decipher what language they were speaking, but my god it was a very nice sight.

I did not want to leave Washington D.C.; it was almost as if I needed to stay there longer. Maybe I should run for Congress?

When we finally left Washington D.C., we drove through Maryland and New Jersey. Maryland and most of New Jersey are truly beautiful states.

I found myself getting pinched for tolls every few miles. It turns out I was on a toll turnpike. My GPS was not set up to avoid tolls. By the time the day was over I had paid almost $100 in tolls because my RV and motorcycle trailer have 3 total axels. They were charging me like I was a bus. It really sucked.

When we got to New York we were led to an expensive KOA campground north of Newburgh, New York that was billed as the New York City KOA campground; talk about fraud, we were about 70 miles northwest of New York City in the middle of a forest.

Upstate New York is a truly beautiful state let me tell you, I had no clue. When we got to the campground it was kind of late and almost dark because of the trees. When we hooked up I discovered that the trees prevented my Satellite TV from working, my cell phone did not work, nor did I have Wi-Fi. Then it started raining as well. I had to rough it with DVD’s from Redbox for the night. Further, we only had a 30amp hookup, so I could not run both air conditioners and my microwave at the same time :]

Anyway, we got the hell out of there first thing in the morning, opting to go to the Liberty Park RV resort in Jersey City, New Jersey instead where we would have to dry camp for $50 a day. The Liberty Park RV resort was billed as the closest RV Park to New York City just 15 minutes away from Manhattan, and with a local water taxi that takes you to the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island. All of this turned out to be true.

On the way in to the campground I noticed that we were in Orange County New York, so I figured I would check and see if Orange County Choppers was nearby. As it turns out, Orange County Choppers was on the way to Liberty Park in Jersey City, so I figured I would stop in and check it out.

All I can say about Orange County Choppers is that it was a huge disappointment. It is the only motorcycle operation I have ever seen that does not sell motorcycle stuff. They have all sorts of shirts and other crap with OCC all over it, but no motorcycle stuff. They don’t even have examples of their production motorcycles in the showroom; all they have is motorcycles that they built in the past. I did not even like those. It is what it is. I got some video and got the hell out of there. It is nothing more than a tourist trap. The bikes on display seem un-ride able and not practical to me.

It was a very interesting trip through narrow streets in New Jersey to the Liberty Park RV resort in Jersey City, New Jersey. My rig is 35’ long with an attached 10’ motorcycle trailer. Some of the streets and turns I had to make near the Holland Tunnel on the Jersey side were monumental, but I finally made it to the RV Park. The RV Park was a combo Liberty Park Marina and RV park. There were ocean going boats, sailboats and the like dry docked on the other side of the park, with an actual marina and a bar and restaurant there.

Since the RV Park was totally full, we had to dry camp which basically means that we had no external electrical, water, or sewer hookups. We had to rely on our RV, and our generator. There was a dump and water site in the park that we could use as needed.

Since we wanted to run our generator past 10pm they basically put us in an area that was by itself in the middle of a field next to a bunch of boats. On the other side of the fence was a construction site in Jersey City. The setup was kind of like in New Orleans where we were 3 blocks away from Bourbon Street but smack dab in the middle of a bad neighborhood.

The Liberty Park RV area of Jersey City was kind of like a small island of a good area in a real bad area if you know what I mean.

We were so close to NY City in the Liberty RV Park that we could see the World Trade Center and Wall Street just across the Hudson River, and I could see the Statue of Liberty from my RV.

Due to a breaker on my generator, I did not get full power until just at dark on our first day in NY City, so we decided to wait until the next day to hit the city.

The next day we immediately went to the World Trade Center site and the 911 memorial. It was a very rainy day.

We did so much in New York over the next week that it is too much to write about here. Like Washington D.C., I felt attracted to the city; as a matter of fact I fell in love with the city. We rode the subway and went all over the place.

Three days before I left New York I ended up partially tearing my calf muscle walking down the subway steps. The reason I know it is partially torn is because three nights ago I spent most of the evening at Jersey Medical Center ER where they confirmed the tear with an ultra sound.

My years of sports and injuries have made me kind of tough when it comes to injuries like this. I tooled around New York City for three days in severe pain because I did not want to miss anything.

We finally left New York City two days ago on August 20, 2012. It took a while getting out of the city, we did not really want to leave, but we had to so we could finish the 3rd and final leg of this great trip that we are on.

We ended up driving to Northumberland, PA where we found a killer RV resort right on the Susquehanna River in Pennsylvania. We got there just before dark. I swear I could live in this place. Pennsylvania is one of the most beautiful and big states in the United States.

The locals there upon seeing my Harley Davison in tow assumed I was there for “PA Rally on the River” which was set to begin on August 23, 2012, or the day after we were set to leave the campground.

Unfortunately the campground was booked and full months in advance for the rally. I was told that if I paid $50 a night, I could dry camp there with my RV. Had they gave me a regular camp site, I would have stayed for the rally. I think if they knew who I was, that they would have accommodated me. Liz called even after we left asking if there were cancellations; there were none.

Based on what I was told 2k people would fill up the camp grounds for the event which is adults only. I knew that if I stayed for the event, I would be stuck in the campgrounds until it was over due to the number of people. Further, there would be no way to dump the brown water tank or refill the fresh water tanks for the next week.

I decided to not stay for the rally but to instead spend the time tooling around Sturgis, SD when I get there. We left today on August 22, 2012. We drove all the way to near Cleveland, Ohio where I now sit writing this update.

We still have a long way to go on our trip and further updates will come soon.

By California Personal Injury Attorney Norman Gregory Fernandez

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