You may not expect a non-Harley rider to say this, but the best motorcycle magazine was Iron Horse under its best editor, David Snow.
I discovered Iron Horse during my want-a-Harley days in the mid-1990s. Iron Horse was a Harley-specific mag with a few British bikes thrown in.
Snow and the staff didn’t like the way Harley and most of its dealers were doing business — Harley taking credit for style changes that were pioneered by others and dealers for marking up prices when the bikes were objects of lust.
Snow held them accountable for their actions, and he also criticized other motorcycle magazines for their inaccurate — and often sycophantic — coverage of the Harley scene. He did it with wit, erudition, profanity, humor, and dead-on respect for the facts.
Most motorcycle magazines (with the exception of Motorcycle Consumer News) exist only to sell you something. There’s usually very little in the way of interesting content.
Not so in Snow’s Iron Horse. Every issue had something interesting in it. He could ride bikes, work on them, and build them. Snow was a genuine hard-core rider and he was a master at writing about his rides. It wasn’t just a recitation of where he’d been; reading it, you felt as if you were on the ride yourself.
The magazine’s writers were pretty good, too. Some are still deeply involved in motorcycles:
— Scott “Genghis” Wong
— Noyes B. Livingston III
— J.T. Nesbitt
Snow left Iron Horse in 1997, after more than 10 years at the helm. He came back for a few issues when the magazine reopened under a new owner, but he didn’t last long under the slapdash regime. It’s a shame this talented guy is not writing about motorcycles. It’s like Stephen Hawking leaving physics to work at McDonald’s.
17 thoughts on “The Best Motorcycle Magazine”
I couldn’t agree more!
God I miss David Snow! Words cannot describe how much so. I shall not try.
Whatever happened to Rob Sager? He shot my Triumph Chopper sometime in the 1990s on Long Island but nothing was published.
I agree 100%. I would read every issue cover to cover as soon as it would hit the stands. Don’t forget Fritz and the mags super hero Chopper Man
Time for Scott and Snow to start a new mag, ehh?
The truth and nothing but the truth!
Hey, I was in the March ’93 or 94 issue the article was titled Little Sister…any one have extra copies?….twin towers in background of one of the pics…
Yes, a very good magazine in those days it was. I subscribed for a long time and still have every issue. The one pictured above, it’s right over here close to me as i just reread it. I read constantly but these old Iron Horse magazines are the only magazines that I ever reread. They are timeless classics.
The hardcore chopper bible, period !
My favorite magazine of any kind, ever. It was unlike any other product on the market, at the time or since.
It was truly a kickass magazine! im proud to say I met Snow and Sager when they shot me and my dad for that cover #145 about FAMILY VALUES, amazing how crappy the so called bike mags are now just useless even for toilet paper!
Is there such a magazine still around
(Iron horse) I used to get it in the 90s
Then it disappeared did it morph into
The horse backstreet choppers
I had a passion to buy a bike in the early 90’s, but had zero money for one. I bought a few issues and loved the magazine. it was the best, most realistic biker magazine ever. if anybody can help me to find some issues from that 90’s period, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org