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Loud Harley's on Main Street

Original post made by Furious George on Aug 1, 2009

The roar of a Harley motorcycle may be feel empowering to the rider. It is a nuisance to the rest of us.

I saw an eldely couple sitting on a bench Friday night on Main street in front of the art gallery. Behind them was a parked Harley. The owner walked up and started his bike with absolutely no regard for they elderly couple just 3 feet behind his exhaust pipe. It sounded like a shot gun blast going off. Shocked and shaken, I witnessed the couple scurry down the street to collect themselves. Meanwhile the moron on the Harley was reving his engine as if to say, "look at me"! I was furious.

The fact is most of these knuckleheads illegaly modify their motorcycles to make them louder. The worst thing that can happen to them is a fix it ticket. The police should start aggressively citing them for these violations on Main Street. Until they do, the rest of us will be subjected to annoying cries for attention by Moronic Harley owners going through a mid life crisis.

That's all

Comments (46)

Posted by unclehomerr.., a resident of Downtown
on Aug 1, 2009 at 4:08 pm

If you witnessed this, why didn't you walk up to the motorcycle owner and point out the problem. I'll bet they'd have apologized and stopped 'revving' the engine. Motorcycle owners 'just want to get along'!


Posted by Cholo, a resident of Livermore
on Aug 1, 2009 at 4:26 pm

Maybe it's a leftist plot? ya think? But wait, it could also be about Obama? ya think?


miss sean hannity

Posted by quiet dinner, a resident of Downtown
on Aug 1, 2009 at 4:28 pm

If they 'just want to get along' maybe they shouldn't violate noise ordinances or the generally accepted public policy of keeping the peace. It's just plain rude and they shouldn't need to be told to understand this.

Posted by Cholo, a resident of Livermore
on Aug 1, 2009 at 4:30 pm

Are you a fraidy cat. escair to punch out the biker...sissy georgie pordgy?




Posted by Furious George, a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Aug 1, 2009 at 5:51 pm

Hey Cholo and Biker Bill

Not too scared of these bikers. More annoyed than anything. Why don't they take up bocce or golf like more civilized members of AARP.
Oh yeah, I forgot, they think they are some reincarnate of James Dean or Marlin Brando.

News flash Harley riders: Your not cool, chicks don't dig you, and your are a nuisance. They remind me of flies. They eat crap and bother people.

Posted by NewsFlash, a resident of Castlewood
on Aug 1, 2009 at 6:11 pm

Furious George,

You are stereotyping and the words you use cut like a sword. I am not going to go down a road of insulting you, as you have insulted me and people I know. I know a lot of Harley owners that have quiet pipes and respect others. I know doctors, lawers, pastors, teachers, coaches, Military High Ranking etc.

Posted by annoyed, a resident of Downtown
on Aug 1, 2009 at 6:39 pm

So sad there are arrogant people out there like you. Try being polite and asking that harley rider please not revv the engine. But also loud pipes save lives. Everyone should be aloud to enjoy downtown. Kids bump music and our local police ride harleys. Its your attitude thats disappointing I'm sure he or she didn't do it so he or she could scare the crap out of a older couple enjoying the evening. Maybe that guy did them a favor and scared them away from you and your loud mouth

Posted by Mike, a resident of Highland Oaks
on Aug 2, 2009 at 2:05 pm

Past a certain age, men should avoid certain things in public; namely,
long hair,
and Harleys.


Posted by Qwerty, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 2, 2009 at 2:20 pm

I think Harleys can be cool, but the emphasis is on "can". Far too many riders who frequent the downtown area are guilty of noise pollution. There are supposed to be ordinances governing the noise levels that are permissible in the downtown area. A little bit of a hum or grunting from a motor is fine, but I shouldn't have to put up with something that sounds like a jet engine taking off. It is very difficult to enjoy a peaceful meal outside when the harley riders are revving their engines, while coming and going all day. I wish the cops will do something about the problem because it has become ridiculous.

I haven't ever bothered to go up to them to ask them to stop, because much of the time they are revving their engines as they are riding down the street, or as they are taking off from a parking spot. Like running after them is going to do anything. That's the job of the police.

Posted by The point, a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Aug 2, 2009 at 6:53 pm

The point is that downtown is for everyone - but the Harley riders, loud music in cars, smokers, and the drinkers ruin it for everyone else constantly.

In just a one week time period, I witnessed two drunkards shoving each other outside that bar across from Baci as I took my family to dinner, a truck with ear-deafening music repeatedly driving up and down Main while I talked with some friends on the sidewalk, and finally the fun roars of the Harley guys outside of Tully's smoking it up in an area filled with my kids going to ice cream.

It's a miserable experience downtown and I'm done going downtown. If the downtown association wants to turn the corner on business, perhaps they should revisit the city regarding civic codes on nuissance behavior that limits patronage.

Posted by Vaughn, a resident of Downtown
on Aug 2, 2009 at 8:24 pm

I sure wish they would open up a strip club down there instead of all of those overpriced restaurants to livin it up a bit down there. Pretty dead if you ask me.

Posted by Dennis Hopper & Peter Fonda, a resident of Vineyard Hills
on Aug 2, 2009 at 8:40 pm

we are coming into town using your biking trails-thanks George

Posted by inconsiderates, a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Aug 2, 2009 at 9:01 pm

I was there and witnessed the harley backfire on the couple. there was no effective way to tell the harley owner what he did. . .it was way too loud to communicate to him. . plus he should know the impact of starting the motor.

Doubtful he would have done that to his friends or family members.

maybe not all harley owners but this one had no manners for sure. You know the saying. .can't teach an old dog new tricks.

Posted by annoyed, a resident of Castlewood
on Aug 2, 2009 at 10:37 pm

The fact is downtown is for everyone and people are always going to find things to disagree about. Resturaunts, parking, the music in the park. But people are people no matter where you go, theres bikers and smokers and kids, and sorry to say, some who have had to much to drink and become stupid. 25years ago in downtown P-town people used to say good evening, how ya doing, didn't matter who you were or wern't. Life is to short for me to judge someone else.

Posted by Arroyo, a resident of Pleasanton Valley
on Aug 3, 2009 at 8:14 am

Where's Rodney King's words when we need them...

Posted by Toni, a resident of Vineyard Avenue
on Aug 3, 2009 at 8:17 am

Harley noise isn't any more annoying that the brats that blast their music while driving down main street. Can we agree to disagree and get over it.

Posted by Supporter of Downtown, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 3, 2009 at 8:19 am

Just last week I parked legally in front of Tully's. When I returned to my car a biker had parked his bike illegally between my car and the car parked behind me (that care was also parked legally). The biker was not even in a parking spot--he parked on the lines between the two legal spots. Where is his head, why does he not feel he needs to follow the rules. I had to wait until the car in front of me moved so I could get my car out. I think we need more police patrol downtown--that is the only way to keep our beautiful downtown area beautiful and enjoyable for all. I hope the Pleasanton Weekly sends these messages to the Pleasanton Police Department.

Posted by unknown, a resident of Pleasanton Valley
on Aug 3, 2009 at 8:23 am

I agree with a lot that was said everybody has some ideal way it should go . the last comment was great a good day or good evening!
harleys are loud but they have the right to drive an go were they want but reving excesssively is not .

Posted by Tom, a resident of Jensen Tract
on Aug 3, 2009 at 8:39 am

I think there are points to both sides of this issue and I think too many people are going too far to either side. I agree that the motorcycles are too loud. I have been downtown many times when motorcycles are started or just drive by and some of them are just way too loud. These motorcyclests know exactly who they are and what effect they have but don't care. There are lots of motorcycles that are quite (relatively) and that is not a problem. I shouldn't need to confront someone about that. Whether it is a loud motorcycle, a loud truck, or someone blasting their stereo, it is a lack of concern for others using a common space. Consideration for others will go a long way towards a peacefull community.

Posted by John, a resident of Birdland
on Aug 3, 2009 at 8:55 am

Hey George,

Is your hearing so good that you can tell the difference in just one or two decibels? The pipes may seem loud but still be legal. Your assumption is that the are illegal and also that they are done intentionally. A lot of bikes are made and sold that way and they are perfectly legal, but let's waste our police officers time with things like listening to motorcycles. Maybe we should not allow presumptuous assuming a**holes that stereotype and call names downtown. I like that a lot better.

I hope you get a new neighbor that rides. Have a crapy day George.

Posted by KC, a resident of Country Fair
on Aug 3, 2009 at 9:06 am

Tom, you said it right...CONSIDERATION. that's all it takes. everyone should be free to visit downtown, even the kids. where the heck else do they have to go and have fun? as for the bikers, i like watching the old dudes enjoy themselves. As for the noise their Harleys make..
they could be a little more considerate on how they take off and where they land! But who's going to tell them? I definitely think it should be the police. i bet if they said something to them, there would not be a problem. Maybe if more people would communicate instead of whine about it, things would get accomplished. what a concept!

Posted by Local Neighbor, a resident of Pleasanton Heights
on Aug 3, 2009 at 9:10 am

My husband and I no longer go to Stacey's, the Itialian restaurant across the street, Cold Stone Creamery or High Tech Burrito to sit on the street for dinner and/or dessert because of the loud noise of the motorcycles. Why would we want a peaceful time to be obliterated by the ego of a biker? As was originally commented, it's a nuisance and the police should be out there monitoring the noise on a daily basis until the bikers get the message. Believe me, the bikers are discouraging people to shop and dine in that area.

Posted by The Macho Need, a resident of Laguna Vista
on Aug 3, 2009 at 10:04 am

I say to all of you out there in Pleasanton...How do we all live together? It is hard for any individual to express their freedom and style if others do not agree with what they are doing.

For instance, my space is invaded when the teens lower their base when listening to music. All they want to do is feel the music! My space is also invaded when the bikers pull up to Tully's and back in! UGH!!! Bikers have this thought that they are in the open riding with the wind and that wind carries the noise away, yet when you pull up to a small space full of people the noise invades space.

Countless times I have been peacefully enjoying the laughter of the people to have a BLAST from a motorcycle break it up! Usually, I sneer at the rider and hope they will look at me, so I can sign to them that their modified cycle is way to loud for a small space.

Downtown needs to make a space for the bikes away from the majority of people!

Posted by Joe, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 3, 2009 at 11:08 am

Be gentle towards the bike riders. Know that many of them are not long for this world and will end up serving society as organ donors. Some of them will end up as parapalegics and will provide jobs for 24 hour care workers. Others will drive drunk and kill just themselves instantly, where if they were in cars could kill many others.

The point is, that in all, the obnoxious noise these cool guys create is a small price to pay for the services they provide society.

Posted by Biker Love, a resident of Canyon Oaks
on Aug 3, 2009 at 11:17 am

I think I will put together a rally that ends in downtown Pleasanton. My cusin is a member of a MC that has about 400 members and there are many others out there that will ride to raise money for youth needs. I think I will pick a charity and ask every biker in nor Cal to donate $5 and ride to Pleasanton to give it to the charity. Hell most of them will just come for the fun when I forward this post to them. You should be careful what you say and about whom as you may bite off more than you can chew.

Good times!!!!!

Posted by Biker, a resident of Canyon Creek
on Aug 3, 2009 at 11:19 am

"Consideration for others will go a long way towards a peacefull community."

You mean like we all have consideration on these forums? UG!

Take notice that many of these "bikers" are clean and sober Pleasanton residents. Much better to hang out and drink coffee than to be bozzin it up.

Posted by Qwerty, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 3, 2009 at 1:11 pm

Joe said it.

If you were single, I'd buy you a beer.

Posted by Nosy Neighbors, a resident of Pleasanton Heights
on Aug 3, 2009 at 1:15 pm

Bikers? You're calling these middle-aged, hair-implanted, mid-age crisis'd, over-viagra'd, aging yuppies BIKERS!?? (ROTFLOLPIP!!)

Please. You are offending every scooter, rice rocket, Harley or anything powered with two wheels, rider in the general public with that comment. Bikers do not typically live in Ruby Hills, have jeans with crease marks down the front (c'mon guys, your sending your jeans to the cleaners?) gold Jawbone ear pieces & brand spanking new leather jackets.

25-30 years ago these were the same kids on their skateboards that were "tormenting" the poor citizens of Pleasanton. They've just grown up & acquired bigger, louder & more obnoxious toys.

Next time your feeling your space infringed on just go up to Mr. Harley man, take the keys out of his ignition & toss onto the nearest roof. If done with enough determination you should not have a problem & will have a street full of folks who have your back just in case things get, touchy.

Posted by Harley Hell, a resident of Downtown
on Aug 3, 2009 at 1:27 pm

I can tell you how this problem is handled in the part of the country that is not loon land:
1) They have noise ordinances
2) They enforce their noise ordinances
3) The police just love locking up those that break the noise ordinances (because it also reduces the crime rate)
4) The people love the police for maintaining the peaceful environment.

Note to the Pleasanton Downtown Association - For every $1 of business you get from the Harley crew, you probably lose $1000 from those that can't stand the Harley noise.

Posted by Hearing Loss, a resident of Vineyard Hills
on Aug 3, 2009 at 3:48 pm

An otherwise reasonable friend of mine bought a Harley and had the carb jetted and the exhaust pipes drilled out. He called it "standard modifications." Get a ticket for noise? It's known as the Harley Tax, and a bit of a badge of honor amongst the riders.

When's the last time you saw a police foot patrol on Main Street during high dining time?

Posted by BikerBill, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 3, 2009 at 3:59 pm

With all these comments, it will be really interesting to copy and paste all this and distribute to ALL MC clubs and groups in the entire Valley and Bay Areas!

We ride anyways and it doesn't matter to us where we end up!

P-Town, you will get yours and more!

Posted by Hearing Specialist, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 3, 2009 at 4:02 pm


You wrote: "Hey George, Is your hearing so good that you can tell the difference in just one or two decibels?"

As an audiologist, I can tell you George is more than accurate on the noise level, and I can attest to the damage it can cause. You are more than off on the "1-2 dB" estimate. Speak to that which you know. You obviously know not in this case.

For those of you who would like to further your insight, follow this weblink Web Link to a depiction we audiologists use to demonstrate where environmental noises occur vs. the speech banana that depicts average speaking volume. Sustained exposure to this noise can have permanent damage. I find it interesting that Harley riders don't have a problem with the noise themselves. Perhaps they indeed have an established hearing loss themselves and can't appreciate what the rest of us consider pain.

The noise from any mechanical device is not modulated by what is referred to as a MCL, Most Comfortable Listening level (think what you set your car stereo or TV to when there is no competing noise).

Class dismissed.

Posted by Pleasanton Resident, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 3, 2009 at 4:05 pm

Biker Bill,

Feel free to invite whomever you like. We'll be sure to take the more prudent advice provided by more considerate people and call the police to handle it.

Game over, Bud.

Now go crawl back into your hole.

Posted by Furious George, a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Aug 3, 2009 at 4:11 pm

Biker Love

You prove my point. You are planning to assemble your cousin's motorcycle "club" (400 of them) to rumble down main street to teach us a lesson. That would be really loud huh? Ooooh we are so scared. You are not feared. You are loathed. You ask why? Because your loud displays are a narcisistic cry for attention.
It is a delusion. For if you could see yourself as we do, you would be embarassed.

Posted by Amen!, a resident of Downtown
on Aug 3, 2009 at 4:19 pm

Furious George,

You're 110% correct!

Thank you for saying what we all have thought of these people and for being so accurate!!

I live nearby and look forward to seeing everyone calling the PPD more often.

If a squeaky wheel gets the grease, then we will certainly enjoy the more frequent and regular visits of the police!

Posted by Cholo, a resident of Livermore
on Aug 3, 2009 at 4:59 pm

Oh my...somebody just used the "N" word for attention! My oh my...I am so escair.

What wrong with noise, lots of you don't seem to mind if your brats making the noise...tee hee hee, tee hee hee...


Posted by Furious George, a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Aug 3, 2009 at 5:35 pm

Sorry Cholo

We'll try to slow it down so you can keep up. Now go clean your room or your mom's not gonna let you use her car tonight.

Posted by resident, a resident of Downtown
on Aug 3, 2009 at 8:19 pm

I don't understand why anyone fails to get the deal with loud harley riders. It's a simple equation:
Big noise equals small penis.

Posted by unclehomerr.., a resident of Downtown
on Aug 3, 2009 at 9:53 pm



Posted by John, a resident of Birdland
on Aug 4, 2009 at 8:50 am

Hearing Specialist-

You can not just stand on the street and tell me what DB's a noise is at. You need equieptment for that. Speak to what you know. Now go change the fri oil and flip that burger.

Posted by Biker Love, a resident of Canyon Oaks
on Aug 4, 2009 at 8:54 am

Furious George,

Do not tell me you are not scared. You could not even confront one of us when you were so mad downtown the other night. You had to run home and get behid yoour computer and type it out. Yeah you seem like a real bad ass that I should be worried about. Now I have to go I have some bikes to modify for cruzin downtown.

Posted by Old Folks Home, a resident of Downtown
on Aug 4, 2009 at 10:01 am

Why don't you complainers move to the Old Folks Community above Walnut Creek?

Nice and quiet and you can sit back and judge the rest of the world!

I wonder what all the mommy's and children in Iraq and Afghanistan think of the decible level of all the bombs over the last several years!


Posted by KC, a resident of Country Fair
on Aug 4, 2009 at 11:19 am

everyone still on here talking about the same crap?? one thing is for sure, pleasanton people need to work on their spelling. second thing...Biker Bill~why do you want to prove to these people exactly what they are already thinking of you?

Posted by MCist, a resident of Parkside
on Aug 5, 2009 at 10:32 am

Furious George - Brando and Dean rode Triumphs not Harleys. As did Fonzie (Happy Days) and McQueen in The Great Escape.
Nosy Neighbors - Keys just unlock the steering lock and then are removed. You can't pull the key out (they aren't there) but go ahead and try, motorcyclist love that.
Harley Hell - cops had to have a decibel reader that is also calibrated, when a bike is over 100db you get a ticket, nobody gets locked up.
Pleasanton downtown is part of the Niles, Sunol, Calaveras and many other ride loops so bikes of all kinds are here to stay.
Anyway I love bikes and have three but your complaints are the same ones form the 50's to present. People hate loud bikes even many motorcyclist. I have noticed that SUV' and cell phones are as, if not more, hated here. Pollution, danger, and the ability to wipe out any car they hit are often cited. Motorcycles get between 40 and 100 mpg and cause little damage to the environment and anything they hit. My insurance is $97 a year so insurance companies know this. Also manufacturing pollution from building a bike is much, much less than a care and requires fewer resources. So if air pollution, industrial pollution and danger to the public are considered motorcycles win. If you are from Pleasanton you probably care more about being bothered, startled and noise pollution than real environmental damage. Myopic worries of people that should have larger concerns, but you'll be dead before the environment and natural resources are, so what bothers you today should be addressed.
When we escort soldiers leaving and arriving from the Middle East they love it. It makes them feel special, supported and in the country they fight to protect. They love our freedom and see what is to be somewhere where freedoms don't exist. I'm 35 but most Harley riders are older and far from outlaws. Half the people here seem to be saying HD riders are middle aged credit card cowboys and the other half say they are outlaws. They are just people that dropped at least $25,000 on a machine, that's all that is true of all of them.

Posted by MCist, a resident of Parkside
on Aug 5, 2009 at 8:05 pm

Posted by Hearing Loss - Re jetting a bike does not affect noise levels at all and if your friend is taking a drill bit to his pipe he doesn't know what he's doing. You rejet to usually larger jets so the bike runs richer. Most bikes are FI now anyway. Just FYI.

Posted by IMDUMB, a resident of Deer Oaks/Twelve Oaks
on Aug 8, 2009 at 12:23 pm

I hate all the Harley noise too. I don't mind the custom choppers with SS engines from Canada although they are much louder. Also the Triumphs, Indians, motards, Ducatis, sport bikes, enduros, and Arlen Ness bikes are fine, just the Harleys bother me. I am a Pleasanton ignoramus.

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