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We at Ohio City Moto love new motorcycles, glistening machines fresh out of the crates, put together with care. We also love refurbished vintage bikes, pitted metal re-made, classic paint colors matched, decals duplicated. But to tell the truth, the best looking bikes are the ones we see on the road.

Vehicles of a certain age and historic importance can certainly become museum pieces. And we’re happy that groups like the AMA and Barber Vintage Motorsports Museum are out preserving examples of wonderful design or fragile historical artifacts. But part of the appeal of motorcycling is being out in the elements, on the road, in the dirt. If a motorcycle rider didn’t want to be out in the elements, he or she would probably be in the comfort of a car.

So what makes a bike look good? seeing it being used for what it was designed (or modified to do). Come on, that dirt bike or scrambler looks cool covered in mud. Gouges and scratches on that fairing mean you had a good time on those gravel roads. Blue pipes? Sometimes it’s good to push your machine. Your bike is like a great pair of jeans or boots. The wear and fading mean you enjoyed them; they conform to who you are. You had fun in the damn things.

Sure, wash that motorcycle, get out the touch-up paint, the polish, just don’t forget the most important thing, the ride.

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