Thread: End of an Era?
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Old 09-24-2011, 01:23 PM
showcaller showcaller is offline
Motorized Bicycle Senior Member
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 69
Default Re: End of an Era?

Originally Posted by Dagwood View Post
I work for a Honda Engine distributor, and I call on the manufacturers that desire to use Honda power for their products here in the USA. I premise this only to explain that I am extremely familiar with the Clean Air Act, its provisions, and its timeline. To begin with, here is a quote from the Act, which you can find in the federal register should you desire. "Any engine manufacturer that supplies an engine to an equipment manufacturer for a non-compliant application shall share in the responsibility of the violation of this act"
Along with verbage such as this, fines of over 34,000.00 are specifically listed per violation, and as of dec 31, 2011, equipment powered by engines below 225 cc will be included in the regulations. 2011, only engines above 225 cc's are. Notice I say "Equipment" powered by...because it is not only the engines..but the entire piece of equipment..MUST be certified and Labeled as compliant with the EPA provisions according to the date of manufacture. Without this is illegal to sell in the USA. And there are 2 for exhaust emmissions, and one for evaporative emmissions, and it is the latter that has changed the landscape drastically. absoultly no vapors can escape from a gas powered piece of equipment..running, or sitting still not running...EVER! Carbs can no longer have vented bowls, gas tanks can no longer have vents, or vented gas caps..fuel lines must be "impermeable"..because some genius decided that fuel vapors can be detected passing thru rubber lines that have been used traditionally and a "new" formula had to be developed. Carbon cannister and complete vapor recovery systems must be in place on every gasiline powered piece of equipment, and it must be certified as built and designed to EPA specs, and all its compenents..before a compliance number will be issued.This number must then be affixed to a label on the equipment.
Furthermore, the CA Act says that "any individual tampering, modifying, or otherwise changing a certified machine shall be in violation of this act"
Do you realize that as of dec, 31st 2011, you will be in violation of the law if you even go to NAPA and buy an aftermarket gas cap for your car?..let alone a carb, a cam, or an aircleaner, or a "chip" for the FADEC...or any of the 30 billion dollars of hot rod parts sold sold for cars relating to the fuel system? Not to mention your lawn mower..or string trimmer. Only the components it was certified with can be used as replacements.
For the last 6 months, I have had at least 3 or 4 customers a month cancel orders for engines, because they are discontinuing products because they are either uable to comply, the dont think the market will bear the increased cost, or simply dont want to invest the money in the compliance process. Yes, my paychecks have been directly affected. But I still have a job, which I am thankful for, unlike the many people who have been laid off at manufacturers I call on because of the decline in production due to these regs. I dont know just how this has affected the Motorized bike folks..but I sure notice, now that I am building one, how many vendors do not have inventory. FEAR of prosecution is a market influence in alot of industries, and with the EPA's budget increase last year to 10 billion..they have hired many , many people, and the new regulations have been flowing like water from a bucket this year and last. Well, after all, thats what a regulatory agency does right?
How do you like the change so far? THE EPA has been running unbridled for years, and now it is a monster that considers only about its appetite for control, and nothing else. Jobs, freedom, personal property rights...nothing.

In re-reading my post, I suppose it may be considered by some here as a rant. Didnt intend that, just pointing out some facts, and they may or may not be the reason there is little inventory for a bike builder out there. Its possible, that most of the vendors have mis-read the demand, and if containers take 90 to 120 days to be filled, shipped and arrive here from China, (as they do Honda engines from japan), it is jsut all sold out, and maybe thats the reason for the shortage. I hope so..but I predict the end of this activity is around the corner due to EPA regs...unless the people of the USA change the way they have been voteing.
Dagwood, thanks for your comments. Everything you have said is totally consistent with what has been going on for years in California starting around twelve, thirteen years ago when "they" outlawed two strokes on Lake Tahoe. The Blue Water group set out to prove that running a two stroke traditionally carburated engine produces more pollution in a day than driving a car 100,000 miles. There are many ironies, alot of ridiculous assumptions, and many people who know that it is politically correct to put down and outlaw two stroke anythings if it means more power. (as in local/state government for them) The initial reason for the law on Lake Tahoe was to get rid of "noisy" personal water craft and jet skis. The outboards were actually the babies thrown out with the bathwater. Yamaha and Kawasaki were not stupid. They set out to produce high performance four strokes thereby allowing personal water craft back on the lake. The Tree huggers have won and continue to gain more and more power through the years with their distaste for two strokes. Evinrude's Two stroke Etec technology actually runs cleaner than any four stroke outboard out there. Try telling that to John Q Public and see how far you get. I will get off my soap box but yes, after December 31st of 2011, it will be illegal to import two strokes, though I have to believe that as long as they are CARB compliant it should be fine like the Etec technology. I know that a couple of shops are loading up on the two strokes so they will be available for quite awhile after Jan 1st, 2012. In the bigger picture I see more attention being paid to higher performance four strokes for our bikes.
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