~Since 2004~
A site about memories, thoughts, photos, and unrepentant opinions about motorcycles and motorcycling after four decades of twisting the throttle.

Friday, January 19, 2007

Love Child

OK, so you're a hot female BMW K1200LT, Euro-cool and stylish. One weekend you get a little a little drunk at a party and meet up with a manly Harley-Davidson RoadGlide.

High octane fuel overcomes common sense and Bavarian propriety and you spend a passionate weekend together. Later you discover you are pregger's with the love child of your drunken weekend fling with the roguish American.

The result:

The Victory Vision

The bizarre love child of a K1200LT and a RoadGlide? Perhaps.

Congratulations to Victory for taking a chance. Yamaha will feel much better now about their GTS1000 experiment.

More pictures here at
Motorcycle Daily if you dare.

Monday, January 08, 2007

Phoenix Antique & Classic Bike Show

Bultaco TSS

There was a "British & European only" antique and classic bike show in Phoenix this past Sunday. "Antique and classic" usually means bikes can be from 1883 to 1978 so it's possible to see everything from a turn of the century Indian to nice mid-seventies Kawasaki triple. The turn out for this past Sunday's event was rather small and especially light on German and Italian machines but there were still some really nice bikes present. The ones that got me most excited were a brace of mid-sixties Bultaco road racers. I've never seen that many TSS model Bultacos at one time. Apparently one fellow (
Donald R. McCullough, with whom I didn't get a chance to talk ), owns them all. I'm not envious of him as we know that envy is a sin...I just wish I had those bikes and he had better ones.

Bultaco with pudding bowl helmet

Now I find myself thinking of buying an old Pursang and turning it into a pretend cafe racer. Think 250lbs (the bike, not me), a total loss lighting system to make it street legal, and a 40 hp single cylinder 2-stroke engine. How could that not be fun? Not the first time I've had that thought and probably won't be the last. Old Pursangs are not that expensive. Of course making one look like a Bultaco TSS would add some dollars to the project but then if I can't look like Steve McQueen on a Triumph maybe I could look like Ramón Torras on a Bultaco grand prix road racer?

Ramon Torras - Bultaco 125cc

Anyway, I snapped some pictures Sunday and you'll find a few more of them here.

The next vintage bike show in the Phoenix area will be in April. Based on last years event it should be quite good. I'll post the exact date later. If you're in the central Arizona area and love old bikes and interesting people it's definitely worth the time to attend.

Monday, January 01, 2007

2007 And Beyond

2003 Aprilia Caponord
I had planned to replace my departed Honda ST1300 with a new Gold Wing. The lure of the comfort of the Gold Wing was strong even as it's $19k price tag loomed over my budget like a fat guy at a dessert bar. Happily, I came to my senses before the wife and and I bought matching riding suits, a stuffed animal for the luggage rack, and plunged headlong into the Gold Wing world.

I made the grievous error of selling my blue Aprilia Caponord, a 2002 model, in December of 2005 and I've regretted the sale ever since. It would be true to say that the Mrs encouraged me to follow my heart and buy another Caponord rather than a Gold Wing. I would imagine that it would also be true that my whining about the old Caponord was getting tiresome.

In a moment of easily encouraged decisiveness I bought an '03 Caponord from my buddy Shane. He'd only put 1800 miles on it because of TMTS (too many toys syndrome) so the bike is near showroom condition and to add a bit of glisten to my moto-lust, it is red. Riding the 50 miles home with my new prize I remember why I love the Caponord so much: Great handling, plenty of power, nice seating position (lousy seat though), and that Italian v-twin uniqueness that is positively addictive. The bike fits me the way the ST1300 never did even after a year of fiddling.

The Capo is my third Aprilia, the 40th bike I've owned, and probably my all time favorite bike after the 1974 BMW R90S I bought brand new in ye olden times. The Capo isn't perfect by any stretch, it's just a ton of fun and a wonderfully unique and enjoyable ride, so much so that it is only the second time ever I've bought the same model of a bike twice. The first was time was in 1987 when I bought another R90S.

Now as we begin 2007 you're no doubt wondering about 2007 and beyond. In case you're sitting there unsure about what to do in 2007 to fill your idle moments when you're not reading motorcycle blogs I thought I'd offer up a few ideas to keep you occupied:

  • Start a boutique motorcycle company using a revived name from motorcycling's glorious past. Since Indian, Norton, and Vincent are spoken for I suggest using Pope. The name has been in the news a good deal lately so there may be some cross promotional possibilities with these folks if Harley-Davidson doesn't land a deal there first.
  • Go to all the Internet motorcycle forums you can find and post porn and stupid political messages thereby polluting otherwise useful resources (oh wait, that's been done already).
  • De-badge your Kawasaki Drifter and ride it to a bike gathering. See how many people say "Nice Indian!" and then tell them it's a Kawasaki. I actually did that. It worked. Guys looked like they'd just got caught kissing their ugly cousin.
  • Create a TV show entitled "Celebrity NASCAR Chopper Builders Play Poker." Sell it to Speed Channel so they have another excuse to cancel coverage of the Isle of Man TT races.
  • Write to animal rights groups. Encourage them to set up a booth this year at Sturgis to stop the unseemly use of leather by bikers.
  • Walk into a big motorcycle shop and ask the salesman what kind of bike he rides. Keep track of how many say "I don't have a bike right now but…"
  • Go to a mile flat track race and see real dirt track racing before it's gone forever.
  • Make a home video of your favorite motorcycle ride and use good background music (yet to be done).
Beyond 2007... (cue eerie music)

The start of the year is time to look to the future and hope for great things, I decided to look ten years or so into the future and see what will be happening in the world of motorcycling. Yes, ten years is a long time but my many decades in the sport give me an uncanny ability to predict the headlines and announcements of the future:

"Honda announces new four door, passenger airbag equipped, air conditioned, retractable top Goldwing. Electric windows still an option."

"MotoGP star Dani Pedrosa crashes into pace car at end of warm up lap. Honda says future MotoGP bikes will be fitted with rubber fairings and nerf bars."

"GPS guided motorcycles and cars limited to posted speed limit. Cities and States expect severe budget shortfalls."

"Kawasaki ZX2000 boasts 500 hp. Top speed limited to 55 kph per European Union regulations for motorbikes."

"BMW stops demo ride program when they discover people were only joy riding and then buying something reasonably priced elsewhere."

"Harley introduces new "TrailerGlide" model with front fender that turns into a loading ramp."

"Valentino Rossi moves from Piaggio to Hyusong. 16th world championship season expected for Rossi."

"Icon Motorcycle Clothing buys Cycle World Magazine. Final ten pages of actual editorial content to be deleted except for Peter Egan's column."

"Chinese company acquires rights to Indian Motorcycle name. Expects to return Indian to the glory days of the Gilroy era. Bikes to be sold through Wal-Mart stores."

"MotoCzysz to have their first ever race-ready bike done in time for new Haitian MotoGP event."

"Speed Channel announces new motorcycle shows: 'Bikes of NASCAR Driver's Wive's Friends' and 'Celebrity NASCAR Chopper Builders Play Poker.' Speed Channel cancels coverage of MotoGP races to make room in schedule."

"Suzuki introduces new line of cruisers. No one notices"

"Yamaha changes name of Star Motorcycles back to Yamaha Motorcycles. No one cares."

"Author of famous motorcycle blog "Forty Years On Two Wheels" retires from writing. Millions mourn."

Ok, maybe that last one was a little embellished.

Happy New Year.

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