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Thread: The history of BMW Motorrad clubs in the USA...

  1. #31
    Quote Originally Posted by Voni View Post



    Voni
    sMiling


    Last edited by Visian; 12-18-2021 at 05:23 PM.

  2. #32

    Logo, oh no!

    A brief story heard from someone who was there. He was a 26 year-old "outrider"... which is somewhat the equivalent to an Ironbutt rider today.

    In 1971 the outrider crossed the country on his /5, showing up at daybreak on the porch of Bill Harmer's house in San Diego. Bill was a leader in the San Diego club and one of the Californians calling for the formation of a national BMW motorrad club.

    The outrider was responding to an article describing that very idea, written by Harmer and published by Roger Hull in Road Rider magazine.

    But first, a big to Vince Winkel, who led a large number of volunteers in publishing this book 15 years ago.



    At the front of this book we see....



    ... The BMW Owners of America's first logo.

    Interestingly, the outrider played a key role in this logo's design. You see, it turns out that the logo that Harmer had been working on looked exactly like Japan Airlines' logo (of all things)... so it could not be used.

    The outrider had seen the logo for the newly-formed BMW Owners of the UK... and suggested to Harmer that the American club could follow suit. And he sketched with a pencil the map of the USA over the BMW's Roundel / Tank Badge.

    Back then, there was no such thing as Corporate Identity... or, um, the willingness of a BMW club to actually pay a real graphic designer!

    Ian

    ps -> another part of the story is that Harmer's advice to the young outrider was to go back home to Alabama and start a state-wide BMW motorrad club. The outrider was so enthusiastic... he became one of the founders of both the Alabama club and the Vintage BMW Owners Club.
    Last edited by Visian; 11-22-2021 at 03:06 PM. Reason: Had the outrider's model information wrong.

  3. #33
    I wonder why they chose the word “owners” rather than “riders”.
    Do you suppose they thought of including car owners in the original club?

    FWIW, that hand drawn logo might look better to some than the one used now ...
    -Live as fully as you can as long as you can-

  4. #34
    Quote Originally Posted by OldCamper View Post
    I wonder why they chose the word “owners” rather than “riders”.
    Do you suppose they thought of including car owners in the original club?
    Well, there's a story in that....

    FWIW, that hand drawn logo might look better to some than the one used now ...
    In large part, logos are a matter of taste. As a marketing guy, I like logos that are an expression of the brand.

    For example, the Roundel is both a stylization of the Bavarian flag and a symbol of precision. Both are key aspects of BMW's brand.

  5. #35
    I believe the Ural logo is also a roundel …
    Fiat too?

    The BMW logo does look like registration markings.
    Probably not a propeller after all.
    -Live as fully as you can as long as you can-

  6. #36
    Registered User drneo66's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OldCamper View Post
    I believe the Ural logo is also a roundel …
    Fiat too?

    The BMW logo does look like registration markings.
    Probably not a propeller after all.
    Inverted Bavarian flag - the propeller connection was from a 1929's ad
    Current: 2007 BMW R1200RT, 2013 F800GS
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  7. #37
    Quote Originally Posted by OldCamper View Post
    I believe the Ural logo is also a roundel …
    The Ural logo (or at least the tank badge) is a stylized mountain, as in, the Ural Mountains.
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  8. #38
    Quote Originally Posted by OldCamper View Post
    I wonder why they chose the word “owners” rather than “riders”.
    Do you suppose they thought of including car owners in the original club?

    FWIW, that hand drawn logo might look better to some than the one used now ...
    That is subject matter that a founding fathers of the MOA only know, and is only talk about in dark ally ways between the chosen few.
    MJ

  9. #39

    The BMW Touring Club of Detroit



    As I research this subject, I am coming up short on info/contacts with The BMW Touring Club of Detroit. It would be so cool to hear some stories about the club's founding and early days. I would love to know if Vern Hanson is still around and if he can be contacted.

    Reading about the club, I see they're pretty active in advriding, too. Good for them!

    Tried contacting them via their web site but no answer yet. afaik, it could be in a spam bucket.

    If anyone reading this has any contacts, please PM me.

    Ian

    ps -> and THANK YOUT HSVPhil!

  10. #40
    Quote Originally Posted by OldCamper View Post
    I wonder why they chose the word “owners” rather than “riders”.
    Do you suppose they thought of including car owners in the original club?
    So here is part of the story, this is dated March 23, 1972


  11. #41
    #13338 PGlaves's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Visian View Post
    So here is part of the story, this is dated March 23, 1972

    This must, I assume, refer to the BMW RA since riders is not in the name of the BMW MOA. Or was this just the San Diego Club?

    My own feeling without any substantiation ass to 1972 is that people take pride in "ownership." Especially with property and "luxury" goods. So the word owners was used in reference to those high falutin German motorcycles!!
    Paul Glaves - "Big Bend", Texas U.S.A
    "The greatest challenge to any thinker is stating the problem in a way that will allow a solution." - Bertrand Russell
    http://web.bigbend.net/~glaves/

  12. #42
    Quote Originally Posted by PGlaves View Post
    This must, I assume, refer to the BMW RA since riders is not in the name of the BMW MOA. Or was this just the San Diego Club?
    I don't know... honestly, I am working from incomplete information.

    In the book that Vince put together with many volunteers, there is an article written by Frank Diederich, who is one of the BMW MOA founders. He mentions that the BMW MOA came into being on the 15th of January, 1972. The copy of the BMW MOA's Articles of Incorporation are signed by Vern Hanson on March 24, 1972 and by the California Secretary of State on April 6th 1972.

    There was a whole lot going on then and it's not my main mission to find out the details of the national clubs. The thing that impresses me most is that there was a lot of local/state activity going on with (mostly) enthusiastic young BMW riders that led to bigger things... and I have heard a few new names in the process. I honestly think that is the story, which is why I wrote the title of this thread the way I did.

    Figuring that the MOA and RA will both focus on their 50th year in 2022, the story of all USA motorrad clubs needs telling, as much as I can, all in one place. I am hoping that there are some people reading this that might be able to contribute here.

    It would really be helpful to this work if I could view copies of the early years of the BMW Owners News. You were President back when there was a big discussion about digitizing those, but I am not aware if that ever happened?

    If that information is available, I'd still be afraid to ask to see it... fearing I would be told


  13. #43
    #13338 PGlaves's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Visian View Post
    It would really be helpful to this work if I could view copies of the early years of the BMW Owners News. You were President back when there was a big discussion about digitizing those, but I am not aware if that ever happened?

    If that information is available, I'd still be afraid to ask to see it... fearing I would be told

    That effort halted when one key tech contributor refused to agree that the magazine contents could be released in a different format. He feared that some of the information in his articles was out of date and thus should not be re-released. That led to some consideration of excising parts from the material. Once things got difficult - ie needing an editor in addition to turning magazines over to be digitized - the whole thing died. As far as I now know it was never revived. However, the Owners News contributors boiler plate consent was altered to henceforth allow the republication in alternative formats, allowing for example a magazine article to also be on the website.
    Paul Glaves - "Big Bend", Texas U.S.A
    "The greatest challenge to any thinker is stating the problem in a way that will allow a solution." - Bertrand Russell
    http://web.bigbend.net/~glaves/

  14. #44

    AMA News, April 1971 Issue

    When I was doing some consulting work with the AMA some time ago, they had just wrapped up a project of digitizing their magazine from ancient history to the current day. I just remembered they did that (getting old is hell!)

    These docs are on Google and on Page 48 of the April, 1971 issue, the following turned up in a search. It was written by Bill Harroll, the AMA's Ambassador to local clubs (I am assuming Chartered with the AMA)....


  15. #45
    Quote Originally Posted by PGlaves View Post
    That effort halted when one key tech contributor refused to agree that the magazine contents could be released in a different format.
    OK, this is pretty much how I remembered it, but wasn't sure if anything ever progressed.

    fwiw, I spent a good amount of time talking with that same person at a rally, explaining how his concerns could be addressed in a BMW MOA technical wiki (Greg Feeler's idea), where his knowledge could be preserved and attributed, and updated to be current.

    He wouldn't budge!

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