April 2011
Issue 18

Before I get started on the editorial I just want to introduce you to what's in this months newsletter and some of the new products we have added on this month! More info below and on the website.

HydroElectric: The NEW KID ON THE BLOCK! Our NEW IN-Charge HE "HydroElectric" Tankbag series!! This may be the price point and the style for you!

CamelBak: The NEW HE bag (with a play on words) will hydrate you with a CamelBak, which we have added to the lineup.

Contour: We have the "Contour" helmet camera on board now with an iPhone app to use for an on screen view! WAY COOL!

PIAA: I have wanted to add running lights to my ride for some time now so I did this last month and we are making them available to you.

FJR: We have added the FJR liners so if you or a friend has one of the baby's check it out.

VIDEOS: Make sure you subscribe to our You-Tube channel so you will get notices when a new video appears which will be often from now on.

Gift Certificates: Lastly we want to remind you we have Gift Certificates for your hubby, wife, or friends, so check it out.

Editorial, by Richard Battles
Who the hell are we and where did we come from.

This is a recent photo of my baby, yes we still have this puppy.
The RKA idea bloomed in 1983 when I traded my Dodge Aspen wagon in on a Suzuki, Katana 750, I also financed riding gear, a riding suit, TWO new helmets, tankbag and saddlebags.

This is the Cafe Racer from the past
Now I had NO car and two motorcycles, the other a Suzuki 550 inline four which I had made into a Café
racer. This was to be the first motorcycle Kathy rode on her own.

Then I rode it to Southern California to spend Christmas with my new girlfriend, Kathy. I wound up staying there and got a job in the valley 30 miles away and I needed a COOL piece of luggage to carry my stuff.

The Katana was cooler than cool and the saddlebags I felt did not do it justice.
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Kathy and I were both in the thoroughbred race horse industry at the time, I was an owner trainer and Kathy made the Jockey silks you see the jockeys wearing on the track on raceday.

I went to her shop and with a grocery bag and some duct tape built the first RKA "Mirage" seatbag and asked Kathy if she could make me one like this. She used material and zippers from the silks, elastic from horse blinkers, a bent cloths hanger for support and assembled the first real seatbag. That was in 1984.

We moved to Northern California and started RKA in my mother's garage in March of 1985 and then got married a month later. In reality the business was under way in November of 1984 when we got a PO Box in Windsor, CA. and submitted our first ad which appeared in "Motorcyclist" magazine in March of 1985. We were positive we would be millionaires in a year or two.

Why RKA is designed the way it is.

The "Sportbike" of today was born right around this time. I saw my first GSXR in the USA on Interstate 280 above San Francisco and almost died! Single mono shock, bodywork, wind screen, dual headlamps! WOW what a machine!

So our mission was now formed in cement. Motorcycles now have bodywork, Motorcycle friendly soft luggage that does not mess with your motorcycle.

From the "Mirage" we added tankbags but we also decided that a THREE point system was better.

Sure the tankbags of that time came with two buckles on the front and one on the back but the front strap went around the steering head, ONE POINT! The bag would slip and slide all over the place. Our design is one on the right, one on the left, one under the seat. A TRUE three point system. When installed propery the RKA tankbag does not move.

Saddlebags were next and needed to be beautiful and functional. We designed the first support system so our bags did not sag, and we installed hard plastic sides and a Sherpa Fleece material on the backs and bottoms of ALL our luggage, it was very motorcycle friendly.

Has the materials got better we changed to what we use today, SLIP-NOT rubberized material.

We have continued on with Rackbags, and communications bags which you see on the website today.

We also give the customer the option to customize their luggage with color. This really personalizes the luggage and make it YOURS.

The mission was to make beautiful, functional, luggage for sportbikes. And we did and do.

 Why do we love what we do?

Bottom line is we are enthusiasts! We love motorcycles, W
Halfway to Silverton
e actually wave at every one of them, if it's got two wheels we love them.

Kathy learned to ride shortly after we moved to Nor Cal (Words of advice;


In 1987 she got a CBR600 Hurricane, and has owned a Ducati 906 Paso, MV Scorpion, Honda Transalp, BMW F650, and her current 11 year old ride a SV650 with Carburetors, a REAL motorcycle she says

..........Continued above

Continued from column one

I have been ridin
Halfway to Batopilas
(Bottom of Copper Canyon)
g for 49 years now, started on a little Yamaha twin, and have had to many to say, but my favorites have been the twins, TL1000S, 900SS, Transalp, and my current BMW R1200ST.

Kathy and I have been to Batoplias, the bottom of Copper Canyon,

I road raced for four years. We have done a lot and hope to do more.

What sets us apart?

This is a good question I ask myself many times during the year and it comes down to. We love what we do.

No, we did not become millionaires yet, but we have survived so far and we enjoy helping folks get the right stuff for their needs and applications.
WSB Tooele, UT 2010

We are a SMALL hands on business, Kathy and I do almost everything. I thinkthis comes out more and more has the communications part of the business grows.

Sure we want to make money but we also do not what to sell you something that will not work for you. Many of you know for a fact I spend a very large amount of time on the phone at a show or rally talking with you to find out what you really want and need.

Kathy is the same way she love this business and loves working with people. I tell it like it is and stand by what I say and If I make a mistake I will take the beating if necessary. Kathy and I would like to make every customer happy all the time, an impossible dream but we'll keep working on that.

We DO listen and most of the changes we have made to our prod
Allez helping hold down the material on the cut table.
ucts has come from customers input. What you need to understand is we have to think outside the box and try to design ONE product that works well with MOST of the motorcycles. Some of the ideas customers have are great ideas but it may only work for their specific application and not well with other motorcycles.

So if you have any ideas send them to us and address your ideas to "Allez", our kitty is very much into helping make a GREAT product.

We hope you enjoy the rest of the newsletter.



Kathy and I have been talking it over and with the economy and fuel prices the way they are we have decided to stay close to home this year and ride our motorcycles to events whenever possible.

So we are going to cancel any tentative plans east of the Mississippi river.

So here is the NEW TENTATIVE Schedule

Location State
April . . . .
May 13th to 15th AMA Superbikes Infineon raceway CA
May 28th to 30th Miller Motorsports Park Tooele UT
May 26th to 30th 49er Rally (Team Two) Mariposa CA
June 3rd to 5th Chief Joseph Rally John Day CA
July 28th to 30th Top O the Rockies Paonia CO
Aug 4th to 7th 38th Stanley Stomp Grandjean ID
Aug 30th to 2nd CCR (Doubletree Hotel) Boise ID
September  .  .  .  .
October  .  .  .  .
November  .  .  .  .
December  .  .  .  .

More to follow, check out our Events Page which I will be updating when things finalize.

Words of Wisdom
Words of Wisdom

(1) Fine: This is the word women use to end an argument when they are right and you need to shut up.

(2) Five Minutes: If she is getting dressed, this means a half an hour. Five minutes is only five minutes if you have just been given five more minutes to watch the game before helping around the house.

(3) Nothing: This is the calm before the storm. This means something, and you should be on your toes. Arguments that begin with nothing usually end in fine.

(4) Go Ahead: This is a dare, not permission. Don't Do It!

(5) Loud Sigh: This is actually a word, but is a non-verbal statement often misunderstood by men. A loud sigh means she thinks you are an idiot and wonders why she is wasting her time standing here and arguing with you about nothing. (Refer back to # 3 for the meaning of nothing.)

(6) That's Okay: This is one of the most dangerous statements a women can make to a man. That's okay means she wants to think long and hard before deciding how and when you will pay for your mistake.

(7) Thanks: A woman is thanking you, do not question, or faint. Just say you're welcome. (I want to add in a clause here - This is true, unless she says 'Thanks a lot' - that is PURE sarcasm and she is not thanking you at all. DO NOT say 'you're welcome' . That will bring on a 'whatever').

(8) Whatever: Is a woman's way of saying F-- YOU!

(9) Don't worry about it, I got it: Another dangerous statement, meaning this is something that a woman has told a man to do several times, but is now doing it herself. This will later result in a man asking 'What's wrong?' For the woman's response refer to # 3.
When Insults Had Class

These glorious insults are from an era before the English language got boiled down to 4-letter words;

"He had delusions of adequacy." - Walter Kerr

"He has all the virtues I dislike and none of the vices I admire." - Winston Churchill

"I have never killed a man, but I have read many obituaries with great pleasure." Clarence Darrow

"He has never been known to use a word that might send a reader to the dictionary." - William Faulkner (about Ernest Hemingway).

"I didn't attend the funeral, but I sent a nice letter saying I approved of it." - Mark Twain

"He has no enemies, but is intensely disliked by his friends.." - Oscar Wilde

"I am enclosing two tickets to the first night of my new play; bring a friend.... if you have one." - George Bernard Shaw to Winston Churchill

"Cannot possibly attend first night, will attend second.... if there is one." - Winston Churchill, in response.

"I feel so miserable without you; it's almost like having you here." - Stephen Bishop

"I've just learned about his illness. Let's hope it's nothing trivial." - Irvin S. Cobb

"He is simply a shiver looking for a spine to run up." - Paul Keating

"Why do you sit there looking like an envelope without any address on it?" - Mark Twain

"Some cause happiness wherever they go; others, whenever they go..." - Oscar Wilde

"I've had a perfectly wonderful evening. But this wasn't it." - Groucho Marx

Favorite Stuff
Steve's a Happy Camper!
IN-Charge GEN III all Charcoal
Toms' Kawasaki Z1 WOW
26 liter Tankbag and 50 liter Saddlebags

VOTE FOR ....... Bobby Baker

One million Miles in Five Minutes
Bobby Baker is one of our best friends, a fireman in Healdsburg, and great father.
Bobby is also my cameraman and rider in some of the videos we do.
After watching his video I am going to make him director and producer of the RKA videos !!
So read on and help him win this contest.

"I am trying to win a six month test on a CanAm Spyder.
With all the pay reductions there is no way I can afford one, or the trip to Alaska. But if I was to win....who knows.
If you can go to youtube and comment on my video I would totally appreciate it!
youtube link : YouTube - CANAM Entry
I wanted it sort of rough, so I didnt edit out where I misspoke and such.
Hope everyone is doing great!

Bobby Baker"

IN-Charge "HE" HydroElectric

What is a "HE" HydroElectric Tankbag?

We have added The RKA portal system to the right side of our regular tankbags.

Allowing you to insert Cables, Wires, Cords or even a CamelBak drinking hose, hence
"Hydro", Hydrate and drink - "Electric", Power up your tankbag.

Now you can add a power lead, a cigar charger if you like to power and charge your iPhone or smartphone, or an input for your electric liner so your thermostat is easily accessible.
To go a step further we are adding our "Dashboard" cradle (which is still in prototype stage) has another optional accessory.

This cool cradle will attach to the top of the tankbag along with a mapcase allowing you to mount your iPhone or Smart phone on the tankbag so you can see and interact with your navigation, music, and phone calls.

YES, if you already own a regular RKA tankbag this "Dashboard" cradle will fit.

NOW RKA with the IN-Charge "HE " series and the IN-Charge GEN III we have FOURTEEN different styles and sizes to meet your needs in the communications area!

Visit the "HE" HydroElectric webpage for more information.


The new Antidote(TM) Reservoir with Quick Link(TM) System-- the ultimate cure for dehydration.

Antidote features:

- Quick-snap cap that tightens in just a quarter turn

- Low-profile fit for unmatched stability

- Air-light fillport cuts weight

- CamelBak Got Your Bak Guarantee(TM).

If we built it, we'll Bak it(TM) with our lifetime guarantee

Visit the CamelBak webpage for more information.

What is Contour?

Contour is the maker of the world's first (and lightest) HD helmet cam and the world's first wearable GPS video camera.

ContourGPS and ContourHD are the ideal hands-free video cameras to shoot and share HD video for your active lifestyle.

Light enough to fit on your goggles, our compact and rugged helmet cameras make high def video affordable. Wanna see how it works?

ContourGPS, the first hands-free video camera to capture video and location, has a built-in Bluetooth chip that works with the new Contour app to enable your phone to become a live viewfinder.

Now you can configure your camera settings in real-time and preview what your camera sees, all from the most remote locations.

The Contour Mobile App gives you the preview screen you've always wanted for your ContourGPS camera: a screen that fits in the palm of your hand. Now you can preview what your camera sees before you begin recording.

Line up your shot, check the battery life, and see if GPS is locked all from your mobile phone! The days of crooked, misaligned videos are a thing of the past.

Check out my test video I did during my Feb dealer trip.
Pretty cool stuff! 2011 Feb Dealer Trip

Visit the Contour webpage for more information.

FJR 1300 Liners
Long awaited.

Finally Here.

Visit the FJR 1300 Liner webpage for more information.


Available in April

Webpage will be up shortly

Product review
coming next month

Available in April

Webpage will be up shortly

Product review
coming next month

I'm just sayin.......AGAIN!

The snows gonna melt pretty soon.
You're gonna what some stuff.
You're gonna want it NOW, so you can get it on your moto and ready for your rides this year. when the snow melts..

I'm just sayin..

What if you just wanted a CB radio or FRS radio, OR BOTH on your motor so you could talk to your buddies?
What if you wanted a little music you could actually HEAR in quality sound and amplification?
What if you wanted to talk to your passenger, and actually hear every word they say ALL the time?
What if you wanted the very best speakers & mic for your money?
Well here they are.. And that TIME is NOW.
All deals below are FedX ground shipping FREE and the savings on the products is substantial!


The two up riders that want a BLUETOOTH system with Intercom, FRS, GPS, Phone, Radar, Music,
J&M DNG05 systems!
(Main Bluetooth module charged by the moto)    

$1009.94 Sale + free Shipping 
$1219.94 MSRP Save SHIPPING COST PLUS $211.00.

Now you are ready to plug in your Intercom GPS, FRS radio and Radar detector for a complete Bluetooth experience.


J&M DNG05 systems! !
(Main Bluetooth module charged by the moto)        
The two up riders that want a BLUETOOTH system with Intercom, CB radio, AND FRS radio, GPS,Phone, Radar, Music,

$1387.94 Sale + free Shipping 
$1639.94 MSRP Save SHIPPING COST PLUS $252.00.

Now you are ready to plug in your Intercom, GPS, CB radio, FRS radio and Radar detector for a complete Bluetooth experience.



The solo rider that wants a BLUETOOTH system with FRS, GPS, Phone, Radar, Music.
$625.00 Sale + free Shipping   
$834.96 MSRP Save SHIPPING COST PLUS $210.00.

Now you are ready to plug you your GPS, FRS radio, Music, and Radar detector for a complete Bluetooth experience.

All sales listed above go away on April 10th

If you did not know before you know now, We have Gift Certificates!

Treat a loved one or good riding buddy to one of these puppys.

Check out the Gift Certificate Page for different dollar amounts.

Just in case you are wondering, and I know you are :-),
"inquring minds need to know".

That is me into turn two at Buttonwillow about 13 years ago on my Suzuki TL1000!!!!

This is the Cafe Racer from the past
The photos in the editorial are the Archive photos of the month.

My Suzuki 550 Cafe Racer and the Great Katana 750!!

This is a recent photo of my baby, yes we still have this puppy.

See ya all next month and hopefully out on the road somewhere this year.
Feel free to call us at
or pop us an e-mail at


Richard Battles & Kathy Storin