December 12, 2012

Almost Christmas again and our orders are starting to pick up.  It's funny how our work cycle continues to be the same year after year.  This year our slow time hasn't been as slow in the past but we can definitely see an increase in orders over the past couple of weeks.  One thing I always try to do is improve things when work is slow and we have the time to do so.  This year we decided to work on our bag liner design.  We have made them now where they completely cover the inside of the saddle bags and actually cut the cost of manufacturing also which in turn gave us a better product, less cost to produce and a better value for our customers which we are passing the savings along to.

December is almost full and in another day or two we will be scheduling in January.  This will be our 9th year in business which is freaking awesome and want to thank all of our customers, past present and future for using our services.  It still amazes me that this all started in my dad's garage one afternoon and has grown into what it is today.  I would have never dreamed it would and every year we keep growing.  One thing has never changed since day one and that is we want every customer happy and we do

whatever we have to, to accomplish this.  While my goal is to have every customer happy I have learned that there are a few people out there that no matter what you do or how hard to try you will never make them happy.  When I first started MCC guys would just send their seats in with a brief note explaining their problems and I would fix it but now we have a page full of rules and a order form.  One customer I was talking to said "you must have dealt with some real a-holes to have all these rules in place" I couldn't help but laugh but like our teachers said back in school.  One person messes

everything up for everybody.  While that is true to some point we keep pressing forward to having every customer happy and hopefully one day we will be able to achieve that.

We will be closing the afternoon of December 21st and will be closed till December 26th for the Christmas Holiday then we will be closing on December 28th through January 2nd for New Years.  

Everybody here at Mean City Cycles wishes you and your family a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.  Till next time be safe and enjoy the ride.

Nov 19, 2012

It really amazes me how fast this year has gone by.  Seems just like
yesterday we busy working on seats and bag liner orders for Daytona Bike
week and here we are again and already starting to get orders in for people
getting ready for Daytona again.  

We will be closing early on Wed November the 21st for Thanksgiving, probably
around 2 PM and will be closed through the holiday weekend.  Our Christmas
and New Years schedule will have us closing on December 21st and re-opening
on December 26th then closing on December 28th and re-opening on January 2nd
and then we will be back open for our normal business hours.

We hope everyone has a great and wonderful Thanksgiving.

Till next time be safe and enjoy the ride.

October 15, 2012

I apologize to our faithful readers for a very slow update on what's going on at the shop.  We lost a few employees and it put us in a man power bind big time and we have been working our butts off making other peoples butts happy.  Both positions have been semi-filled though but it will take us some time to get everybody trained and up to speed.  Usually training takes 3-6 months to get people familiar with the basics and at least a good year to get them on their own.  So if you get someone on the phone who sounds a little unsure, it's because they are in the learning process and please be patient with them.

Usually this time of year is slow for us.  October and November have historically been our two slowest months.  The past several weeks we have been wide open and being short handed hasn't helped at all but I am very happy that we have been as busy as we have been.  I remember the first year when I went full time with the business, I was sitting in our old new shop about 2 weeks after moving into it and there were only 2 boxes of seats sitting against the wall waiting to be done...not good and I was worried but right after Thanksgiving the phone starts to ring off the hook but then last year it started about a week before Thanksgiving so our slow time keeps getting shorter and shorter which is great.

I had been previously talking in the past about us venturing out into a new area and four weeks ago we took the plunge.  Being short handed I was somewhat skeptical on doing it but the opportunity was there and we jumped on it.  We have started offering custom car interior work now.  The first project went really good and we are now working on our second car which will be our show piece for us to use at car shows.  We are almost finished with it and should have it all wrapped up this week.  This new business will be a subsidiary of Mean City Cycles, LLC.  We will be using our old shop for the car interior work. I feel this move is going to be a huge step for MCC and I am really excited about it.  We have been getting asked since day one if we do car interiors and we weren't in the position to do them and with all the motorcycle seat work I wasn't sure if we could get there but we are there now and we have several cars lined up waiting to get in the shop so it's been pretty cool so far.  We will be bringing our same customer service and quality and hopefully our prices will be very competitive which from what I am seeing we will be priced a lot less than others are just like our seat modification prices.

This seasons rallies are winding down and unfortunately we were only able to make it to one this year.  I know I said we were short handed the past few months but we have really been short handed about all year and it killed our rally schedule but we have had plenty of work at the shop so it worked out pretty good except for those wanting us to be at a rally to work on their seats...sorry.  With that being said with the addition to our services I am not sure what next year's rally schedule will be right now and I don't know if we will even attempt to make any rallies.  The rising cost of fuel and promoters wanting crazy prices just don't make it worth our while to go honestly.  Sure we get work at the rallies and usually get some afterwards from being there but after all the expenses of going, setting up, labor and so on its just gotten to the point to where it's not worth going.  We have a lot of people call the shop asking if we are going to be at different rallies so maybe you guys need to start telling the promoters they need to pay us to come set up because we do draw a crowd where ever we go.

That's going to wrap up this update.  Hopefully it won't be as long before the next one.  Till next time be safe and enjoy the ride.

August 9, 2012

Hard to believe a month has gone by since my last update.  I guess as they say when you are having fun time flies by...it don't seem that fun most of the time though.

A lot has changed over the past month mostly with us going back down to one seat guy...yours truly.  It has been a very busy past few weeks but we have managed to stay right on schedule which was really good considering we were scheduled for two people to be working on seats but that's not to say I wasn't in here every day including Saturday and Sunday making sure we didn't fall behind.  It seems once you fall behind its hard to dig out and I didn't want that to happen.

It's that time of year for Sturgis and man it's killing me being here in the shop while the rally is going on but you can't be two places in the same time but I sure do miss it.  I have been to a lot of places all around the world and Sturgis South Dakota is one of my favorite places to go.

At the end of August things start winding down a little and we catch our breath again somewhat and while we have been enjoying all our work I think we all are ready for a breather.  But with that being said if things continue on the same path as they have over the past few years we won't be that slow but we do normally start slowing down and maybe I am just trying to see some light at the end of the tunnel early.

 We have a new shirt design that should be getting put up on the web site shortly.  These are really cool and we are offering the same design in two different colors. One is our usually gray shirt and the other is a acid washed black that looks really cool.  We have these in stock and ready to ship.

Till next time be safe and enjoy the ride.

June 25, 2012

Here we are winding down the end of June and wondering where in the heck has this year gone?  We have been very busy but I don't think its been any busier than last year but I swear this year is flying by.  Maybe since its been cooler than normal and not getting to ride much has had some play in but it's not cool anymore and its actually freaking hot now.  Whatever happened to spring and fall?  Seems any more we go straight from 50 degree temps right to high 80's and 90's and vice versa in the fall.

We will be coming out with two new t-shirt designs in the next few weeks to replace last year's designs.  We don't really make much on T-shirt sales actually and to date have yet to actually net a profit on them but we always have people asking about them and it's a nice way to advertise.  The funny thing is though everybody always wants a free t-shirt and nobody will make them for us for free so it's hard to give them away.  The new shirt designs are pretty cool I think and everybody who has seen the concept likes them so we'll see how they do.  Last year's designs were well liked and we are almost sold out of them.

Scheduling has been pretty normal for this time of year and we are in between 3-4 weeks out which is actually a little better than where we were last year at this time which was between 4-5 weeks out.  We added more seats to our daily schedule earlier this year which helped a great deal in getting it where its at.

For the past 8 years we have strictly held to our motorcycle seat only work. This has worked really well for us and we stay real busy 9 months out of the year which is really good but I have been toying with the idea of expanding our services in some other areas.  The people I have run the idea by seems to think it's a good.  I have actually started to test the waters locally a little and we'll see where it goes before I open up the flood gates.

One last thing.  We have been being open on every Saturday and while we stay pretty busy on Saturdays there are some that we are extremely slow on so what we have come up with is we are going to start being open the 1st and 3rd Saturday of the month and be closed on the 2nd and 4th Saturday.

That's going wrap up this update.  Till next time be safe and enjoy the ride.

June 5, 2012

What a great weekend we just had while set up at the Hog Happenin in Lincolnton NC.  This was our 5th year set up for this event and it keeps getting bigger and better every year.  We did have a few problems though. Friday evening we were rolling right along and all of a sudden we started losing air pressure.  Checked out the compressor and it was running just fine but wasn't pumping no air.  Then seen the compressor jumping up and down on its stand where the bolts had worked loose.  Got those tightened up and cranked her back up and still not compressing air then saw the broke fitting.  This was at 8:45 PM.  9 PM I was on the road to run down the parts to fix it and got back to the hauler around 11:30PM  Got her all back together with the exception of a few bolts but it was together enough to test it out.  Working like a champ so started putting the rest of it back together and BAM!  Another part broke.  It's now past 12:30 AM.  So, wasn't no fixing her now so went back to the hotel room and got on the internet looking for tool rental places and found one that opened at 7 AM.  Got to bed around 3 and was back up at 6.  Called the rental place on the dot at 7 and they didn't have one at the nearest location but there was one about an hour away.  On the road at 7:15 and made it back to the event around 8:45. We wasn't supposed to open till 10 but when I got back our first customer was standing there and 5 mins later another walked up.  Got the rented compressor up and running and all was good till we started on the first seat.  The compressor was regulated to 90 PSI and our tools require 120 PSI to work properly so what usually would take 45 mins was taking twice that long.  It made a long day longer but we still had a great time and met a lot of good people.  Can't wait to get back down there next year.

Things at the shop have been hopping and to add to our normal seat work the bag liners have been kicking too so we have been extremely busy trying to keep up with everything going on.  Normally this time of year we are 6 weeks out but we have added to our schedule to keep this down and currently we are about 4 weeks out which is super good with very little wait time to get seats in here to be worked on.  But as I say that I do want to point out that our turnaround time is still overnight because we only need the seat the day before its scheduled date then the next day it is completed and shipped back.

Well as luck would have it I have to get back to work that will be a wrap to this update so as always, till next time be safe and enjoy the ride.

May 23, 2012

Another busy week has coming to an end and a long weekend ahead for us and much needed.  We will be closed Friday May 25th through Monday May 28th for Memorial day.  We will be back at it and wide open on Tuesday May 29th.  Of course we have a full schedule then throw one of our favorite events in at the end of the week in Lincolnton NC for the Hog Happenin.
Everybody here at the shop wants to thank all the troops past, present and future for fighting for our freedom which allows us all to do what we love to do.  I hope everybody has a great Memorial day weekend so till next time be safe and enjoy the ride.

May 5, 2012

Where in the world has time gone?...I know, I know its been over a month since my last update and I apologize for that.  We have been very busy at the shop and I have been working on a few new things that I will be updating at a later date once everything is in place.
Thunder Beach has come and gone and now Myrtle Beach bike week is going on but "No" we will not be there.  Looks like gas prices are dropping with the exception of diesel fuel and I have to ask, whats up with that?  So, with that being said no we are not going to Sturgis this year.  Looks like our one and only road trip this year will be to Hog Happenin in Lincolnton NC the first weekend in June.  We always have a great time there and always have a great turn out.
Like I mentioned before things have been beyond busy at the shop and I just want to thank everyone who has used our serviced and to those of you have scheduled with us for the near future.  I also want to thank the guys and gals at the shop, you guys rock.

Thats going to wrap up this weeks update.  Till next time be safe and enjoy the ride.

April 5, 2012

The weather is really taking a turn for the nice side around here and riding the bike to work is back into the routine again.  Along with warmer weather ride in scheduling has really started picking up also.  This time of year is really busy and that makes our job very interesting juggling everything going on.

Custom cover orders have really picked up this year and we have been having a lot of fun with them.  I have been posting a lot of pictures of the seats on our Facebook page so be sure to check them out over there plus I try to post pictures of some of the interesting seats we get in.  If you're on Facebook be sure to become our friend and like our business page.

Bag liner orders have been going crazy lately and we have been working overtime trying to get all those order filled as quickly as we can.  Right now bag liner orders are taking around 2-3 weeks to fill and we are still trying to get ahead and have some made up and ready to ship when the order is placed which with all the colors we offer it always seems everybody wants what isn't made up naturally.  I am hoping and stress hoping that the Harley Davidson tour pack liners will be ready late this week.  There is just a little tweaking needing to be done to the pattern which shouldn't take very long and I have time set aside this week to finalize them.  Once they are available we will get them posted on the website and also post the release on the forums.

The coming Friday through Monday we will be closed for Easter for some much deserved R&R.

That's it for this week.  We all hope you have a Happy Easter and get to enjoy the time off and get some riding in.  Till next time be safe and enjoy the ride.

March 23, 2012

I have been meaning to write an update for some time now but every time I sat down to do it I would get pulled in another direction so I am sitting here now and I am going to make this happen.  We have had a hard time catching our breath with all of the work we have right now but we are not complaining one bit and we are thankful to have the work.

First thing I want to do is give our condolences to Kevin and his family. Kevin's dad passed away this past Tuesday and it's been tough on them. Please say a little prayer for them and keep them in your thoughts.

I know I keep harping on the rallies we will be attending this year and Sturgis is out of the picture definitely now with Diesel fuel being over $4 a gallon.  I think it's a total rip off which I feel sure most reading this does also but what can we do?  Thunder Beach is still on and I am looking forward to us getting down there.  We will be leaving in five weeks for the rally and I can't wait.  We will also be the Hog Happenin in Lincolnton NC again this year and that is always a lot of fun and they really put on a great show.  I know they have 2 stages and I am thinking there are 3 and Friday night they usually have a big name act on the main stage.  I highly recommend coming to the event it is well worth it and it's free to boot.

We have been having a lot of seat heater orders this year and one thing I really need to stress is if you want a seat heater installed please let us know when you schedule so we can ensure we have everything ready on schedule date.  We try to keep one or two extra heaters in stock but it's been tough. The people who tell us they want one when they schedule get their heater set aside for them or we order one for them if we don't have one so please let us know as soon as you can or you may be waiting an extra week to get your seat back.

Last thing and I am going back to work.  I just want to thank the crew for their hard work the past several months, you guys make this place rock.

Till next time be safe and enjoy the ride.

February 27, 2012

Holy cow has the scheduling been busy this year.  We just made our 3rd and final adjustment on the schedule and are actually scheduling more seats per day than we ever have, the bad news is though we are having to adjust our ride in schedule some to accommodate the extra work load.  We have been scheduling at least one ride in per day but we will be slowing the ride in schedule down a little till things slow down just a little bit.

With the increased work load we have make a few changes in the shop also by hiring two new people.  I want to welcome Kevin and Chasity to the MCC team. We have previously tried running ads in local papers and over some of the social groups we are on but this time we put a sign out in front of the shop and I was amazed at the number of applicants we got.  We ended up having to take the sign down early on the second day it was out because we a lot of great applicants and while we were actually looking for just one person we had two candidates that were greatly qualified and grabbed them.  Like any new employee they have a lot to learn and if you get one of them on the phone please be patient with them, they are both learning and we are trying to teach them as much as we can as quick as we can but there is a tremendous amount to learn.

Just when I thought we were finally getting ahead on the bag liners and had a few sets made up then BAM! What we had made up got ordered and now they are gone so we are hard at work trying to get more made up ahead of ordering.  The bag liners are very time consuming and with the increased number of seats limits us to usually one person just working on bag liners orders each day but things are in motion to up production over the next few weeks.

Well, Diesel fuel has hit $4 a gallon and I know it's early yet but Sturgis is looking like it won't be making the trip this year.  With these prices we would be looking at a $2000 fuel bill and that would cut too much into profit.  I know things could change and I don't want to rule it out just yet but it's not looking very good.  I hate it because I love going to Sturgis but if we can't make money then there is no use in going.  All the other scheduled events we have right now are still on and I don't see any problems going to them.

That's going to wrap up this week's update.  As always enjoy the ride and stay safe.

February 1, 2012

Wow! That's the first word that comes to mind with the way this year has started.  It's hard to believe January is already behinds and we are already four weeks out and we have been adjusting our work load trying to stay under 4 weeks two times already.  Just this past Monday we filled up an entire week with work...WOW!  We may adjust our schedule one more time which is going to hurt the ride in time slots some but sometimes you gotta do what you gotta do to keep up with the demand.  It's going to be a busy year for sure.

We have worked this past winter on two new modifications and have them available.  They are not on the order form yet but should be in the next week or two along with their descriptions.  The first one is for 2011 and 2012 Harley Davidson touring bike stock seats, that's the only seats this modification will work on.  It is called the Super Narrow Modification and is similar to our Memory foam modification but we narrow the seat pan where your legs go down so that the seat isn't keeping the rider's legs spread apart when stopped.  It really helps get your feet planted on the ground a lot better.  The second modification is a Passenger seat modification that is available for all seats.  It is called the Wide Single Memory foam modification.  It is very similar to our wide double decker modification but it has just one layer of memory foam instead of two.  Both of these modifications have been tested thoroughly over the end of last year and we have already started telling people about them when they ask for a recommendation.  Just a quick note on the Super Narrow,  I came up with this modification for my wife who is only 5'3"s tall and got a Street Glide.  I liked the way the seat felt so much that I have went back modified my personal seat to the Super Narrow also so it's not just for vertically challenged riders, it works really good for a lot of different sized riders.

It's Official!  We will be back at the Thunder Beach Spring Rally and we will be setting up at Pineapple Willies.  I just finalized everything this past week and it's a go.  Now all I have to do is put together a crew to work at the rally and re-wire the hauler so we can hook power back up to it. At the NC State HOG rally last year the electricians for the event said we were tripping the electrical breakers so they removed our plug and straight wired us.  We have been going to rallies for over 5 years and never had any trouble except one time at Thunder beach and that was because they didn't give us 2 circuits only one, once we figured out what the deal was we didn't have any trouble after that and it's been working fine for 5 years but you can't tell these guys anything.  We will be at the Thunder Beach rally May 2nd through the 6th.  The next event after that will be Hog Happenin in Lincolnton NC.  This is just a two day event but it totally ROCKS and is less than 30 mins from the shop.  We always have a great time down there and we usually work on a lot seats during the event.  I am hoping we will also have bag liners made up to install for both events but that will be if we can get any extras made up.  Seems like as soon as we start getting some ahead they get gone fast and the orders will come in faster than we can make them...a very good problem to have.  Sturgis is still up in the air right now but with the way gas prices are raising I don't think Sturgis will be in the cards for us this year.  With gas prices like they are right now we are looking at a minimum fuel bill of $1925. That's 500 gallons of Diesel and they are saying gas is going to hit $5 a gallon so then you're talking about a $2500 fuel bill alone just get there and get back and the only way we could do that is if we can get a spot to set up for around $1500 and I don't see that happening.  Usually a spot the size we require is $3500-5000 plus another $650 for the city permit...or as we call it the trash bag fund.  For that $650 we get a roll of trash bags and permit to set up.  Going to rallies isn't cheap and I have said it in the past, if we can't make money there is no use to go.

That's going to wrap up this weeks update.  Everything at the shop is rocking. Till next time be safe and enjoy the ride.

January 9, 2012

Just as in previous years the phone starts ringing a lot more after Thanksgiving and after Christmas it shifts into another gear and after New Years it hits hi gear and wide open.  We have already started adjusting our schedule to accommodate more seats per day to ensure we don't get to far out on scheduling and right now we are at 2 1/2 weeks out but it won't stay there for very long with the way the scheduling has picked up over the past few weeks.

Still working on the events for this coming year and things are still up in the air on some of them.  I feel pretty sure we will be at Thunder Beach for the spring rally and I am almost 100% sure we will be at the Hog Happenin event again.  Sturgis is kind of on a see-saw right now due to the fuel prices.  If the fuel prices stay where they are we will be looking at an $1800-2600 fuel bill and unless we can work out something on spot fees.  I really like going to Sturgis but like I have said in the past it isn't worth going just to fight to break even, we have to be able to make money.

Our cover work has really picked up this year and we have been doing some really cool cover work.  When I first started MCC I always thought that the cover work would be 60 to 70% of our work but really it's only been in the 5 to 6% range.  Most guys are happy with their stock covers and just want the seats to be more comfortable but it is fun when we get a cool cover to do and combine it with our reshaping.  We have a few pictures of our cover work on the website but most of the pictures are posted onto our Facebook page just because it's easier and faster to post them there.  Plus the what's new updates have slowed a little because we are always posting on Facebook again because it's easier and faster to post to.

That's going wrap up this week's update.  Everybody here at MCC hopes you had a great Christmas and we all hope you have a wonderful New Year.  Till next time be safe and enjoy the ride.


How to Schedule your Seat
We schedule all of our work, by doing so this makes our turn around time over night.
Please DO NOT send your seat without scheduling it first.

Click HERE to Schedule Your Seat Today >>>.


Testimonials -

Damn! is all I can say.
I thought the stock seat on my Suzuki C50T was nice until I got the memory foam mod from you guys. Damn! is all I can say. Best money I ever spent on my bike. And your service was excellent and FAS...
Mark Ambrose