Cuban Harlistas - a travelling museum of unique bikes

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Cubanharlistas
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Cuban Harlistas - a travelling museum of unique bikes

#1 Unread post by Cubanharlistas »

Dear all,
it's our first post so let us congrats for this huge and enthusiast community.
We would like to share a story because we think it can be a true example of passion and devotion that every biker should know.

We love motorbikes and travels and during a trip to Cuba years ago, we discovered an incredible passion for Harley Davidson that leads a team of Cuban bikers to keep alive their unique models against the Embargo that make impossible to get any replacement parts.
The devotion to their motorbikes, mechanical and engineering skills (they build replacement parts by themselves!), the unique models they ride, the fantastic Cuban scenario and the story of MOCLA (Classic Motorcycles of Cuba) with its founder "Pepe Milesima" and the now president Louis Enrique lead us to come back to Cuba and shoot an hi res documentary to tell their story.
It's not just a movie, but we are trying to help those riders to get replacement parts and to increase their visibility across the web in order to help them keeping alive their passion and this travelling museum of unique motorbikes.
Big companies, we have contacted, have joined the cause providing tires and support although it's almost impossible to import anything in Cuba.

---EDITED----

A little History:

According to the National Register of Vehicles in Cuba, there are about 150 classic Harley-Davidsons on the island, of which at list 80 are still working perfectly.

Luis Breto was the first importer of Harleys on the island. In 1920, he opened a shop in Santiago de Cuba, which subsequently moved to Havana at 314 calle San Lazaro. During those years the, at the time, President Gerardo Machado made Harley-Davidson the official motorcycles of the Police.

At the success of the Revolution in 1959 and the few years following, there were about one thousand Harleys on the island, between the ones belonging to good families' young people and those used by the Army and the Police.

In 1962, the United States of America established the ‘bloqueo', the economic embargo that is still on today, making it impossible to get replacement parts. Meanwhile, the Cuban Government started to consider Harley-Davidson as a symbol of American imperialism and for the bikes started a quick agony.

In the following years, José Lorenzo Cortes, better known as ‘Pepe Milesima' for the millimetrical precision he put into his work, started restoring old Harley-Davidson. Thanks to him, many beautiful HD motorcycles went back on the road again. His example was followed by other Harley passionate who, directly or by word of mouth, treasured his teachings.

José Lorenzo Cortes was so admired by the HD community that every year since 1991, one year after his disappearance, all Harley bikers on the island meet on the third sunday of June in the Colon, the monumental cemetery where he rest, to pay him homage. The celebration took the name of Dia del Motorista Ausente (the Day of the Absent Motorcyclist).

In 1992, the Club of Classical Motorbikes in Cuba (MOCLA) was founded to help its members exchange information and spare parts, and to organize rides on the beautiful and uneven roads of the island.Among the various activities the MOCLA organizes are some important social initiatives, such as special amusement days for young kids in hospitals.

Today, this incredible traveling museum has become a major tourist attraction. In fact, some MOCLA members even organize tours of the island for Harley bikers coming from all parts of the world, who either bring their own bikes or use those of the Club for a unique experience.

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If you want to get more info, see fantastic pictures, we are building a community on Myspace www.myspace.com/cubanharlistas and Facebook.

We have also launched the official movie website on www.cubanharlistas.com

Thank you for your attention

All the best
Cubanharlistas

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totalmotorcycle
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#2 Unread post by totalmotorcycle »

APPROVED to help support the effort to help riders in Cuba. It is the least Total Motorcycle can do to bring awareness to this cause.

Cubanharlistas PMed me before posting (which helped the approval).

Mike
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totalmotorcycle
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Re: Cuban Harlistas - a travelling museum of unique bikes

#3 Unread post by totalmotorcycle »

Cubanharlistas wrote:Big companies, we have contacted, have joined the cause providing tires and support although it's almost impossible to import anything in Cuba.
Please keep us updated on your progress.

Mike
NEW 2023 Motorcycle Model Guides
2022 Motorcycle Model Guides

Total Motorcycle is official Media/Press for Aprilia, Benelli, Beta, Bimota, BMW, Brammo, Buell, Can-Am, CCW, Ducati, EBR, Harley-Davidson, Honda, Husqvarna, Husaberg, Hyosung, Indian, Kawasaki, KTM, KYMCO, Moto Guzzi, Moto Morini, MV Agusta, Norton, Phantom, Piaggio, Polaris, Ridley, Roehr, Royal Enfield, Suzuki, Triumph, Ural, Vespa, Victory, Yamaha and Zero.

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