Got Charge?

On Memorial Day, I was out running errands in my car (which included way too many bags of groceries to carry on a motorcycle, which is why I wasn’t on my bike). I drove past a guy pushing his Honda ST1300, and then backtracked to see if he needed help. Not that I could fix the bike, mind you, but maybe I could help him push the bike off the street, offer him a ride or the use of my cell phone. Anyways, I thought it was kinda rude that people were driving by looking at him, but nobody was stopping to offer help. What impressed me about the rider was that he was outfitted from head to toe in all the proper riding gear. Poor guy, he probably was out trying to enjoy a nice Memorial Day ride on a beautiful Southern California day when his bike quit!

2011 Zero S battery
All you need is a 110-volt outlet and four hours to charge the Zero S's battery.

He looked rather out of breath and grateful that I’d stopped. He figured that the battery had died and if he could just get it to the top of that semi-steep driveway we were near, he could get it bump started. So I helped him push it up the driveway, and waited for him to catch his breath. He made the comment that it was a lot of work to push around a 700-pound motorcycle. Technically, it’s 716 pounds (we weighed one on our Rider scale when we tested it), but I wasn’t about to tell him he was pushing around more weight! Ha!

About that time a fellow stopped to offer help. Mr. ST explained that it’d be great if he could help me push the bike down the driveway. “Pop it into second gear!” Mr. Good Samaritan and I said together as we ran behind the bike. It worked! And Mr. ST shouted his thank you’s to us from the bottom of the driveway.

“Always second gear, darlin’,” Mr. Good Samaritan said to me as we high-fived and banged knuckles.

I continued on home feeling good about helping out a fellow motorcyclist. All this took under 10 minutes (for me, at least!) and I’d like to think that Mr. ST’s Memorial Day ride wasn’t a complete disappointment; maybe just a tad more memorable because of a little pushing and a side trip up and down a steep driveway. Plus, if I ever find myself in that situation, I’d be grateful for the help.

When I got home and saw the electric Zero S that we’re testing parked in my garage, I thought “now there’s a doozy of a battery to rely on.” Although—all it takes is time and a 110 outlet to recharge it. And if you need to push the Zero, which I have—only for a couple of blocks—because I just had to push my luck and see how far it would go on a charge, at less than 300 pounds it’s certainly a lot easier than a 700-pound ST1300. Make that a 716-pound ST1300



  1. Dorothy Parker once said: “No good deed goes unpunished.” But she was a New Yorker!

    A tip of the cap to you, Donya.

  2. I’m so glad you were able to help the ST1300 rider. The ST weighs almost as much as my old 1200 Voyager. I’m also glad you are looking at E bikes. Baring some unexpected breakthrough, or a change in the laws of physics, E bikes will be ready for prime time way before electric cars. I’d like one as a commuter bike.


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