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

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Casa Grande Swap Meet 2010

The wife and wandered on out the annual swap meet at the Pinal Country Fairgrounds.  There wasn't anything in particular I needed but the chance to browse bits and pieces and old bikes and non-standard people is always worth the $5 each to get in.

First, of course, going in you have to get your hand stamped at the gate.  No silly picture or symbol but a proper skull as befits a biker event.   I believe this is my first skull other than the thick one around my brain.  Does this qualify as a tattoo or am I still not hip?

The vendor attendance seemed about the same as last year but there were way more people this year.  The swap meet doesn't attract much of the Gold Wing crowd, it's pretty much a V-twin sort of group with representation from both ends of the M/C spectrum from the Hells Angels to Bikers For Christ and Black Sheep.  I like the diversity.

Why is it that it's always the men who want to walk around with their shirt off?
H-D Headlight nacelle parts.  Like abstract art in aluminum.
Skulls aplenty. They seemed to be a theme today.

BSA single.  I kept shooting pictures of it and the owner finally said "If you like it that much why don't you just buy it?"  I didn't buy it.  I'm not as dumb as I look.

Possibly the oldest bike present. Another BSA with a few modern bits on it.  I'm not sure of the model but I'd judge it to be from the 1930s.
Continuing with the British thing, someone was offering a Triumph engine shoehorned
into a Greeves dirt bike frame.  This isn't unknown, they are called "Grumphs" but this is only the second one I've ever seen.

Naturally there were the usual lifestyle accessories to be found.
I love gas tank shots for some reason.  There were bunches of used tanks for sale. 
Some were aftermarket but many were OEM items. What happened to the rest of the bike?

Buyer's remorse?  "Ok, you got your roller, now my mother gets to visit us for a month."

Not to worry, the new paint will hide it.

More decor for the home. I've heard that Martha Stewart has one just like it.

There has to be a story behind this tank.  A pretty girl, sexy pose, now sanded over.  "Me bitter?  Nah!"

I talked to this fellow for a couple of minutes.  Larry seemed like a really nice guy. 
He has some health issues, uses supplemental oxygen. I asked him if he was still
riding and said "Every chance I get.  The bike is always gassed, tires aired up
and ready when I am."  I'm pretty sure I've seen him cruising around town. It's a
small town and Larry's a big guy.
Larry told me he made sure his oxygen tank was small
enough to fit in the saddlebag of his bike. Right on.

We saw several riders who have health or disability issues and got the impression that none of them were going to go gently into that good night.  One lady appeared to be about 80 years old, in a wheel chair, and later out in the parking lot her son had lifted her onto the back of his bagger and fastened some belts around her to hold her up.  I gave her the big thumbs up and she smiled happily.

Out in the parking lot there were some very nice bikes.  It looks like the chopper fad is well and truly over and baggers have taken their place.  I'm good with that.  A motorcycle should be rideable for more than 25 miles before it needs gas or the rider needs a chiropractor.
A customized Yamaha with a fake gun for a passenger footrest.
I have to think that it might cause some stress when or if the rider of the bike is
pulled over by the cops.

I understand the skull thing, you have to show everyone how
dangerous you are, that you embrace death and don't fear it.
I'd think that since motorcycle riding is fairly dangerous on it's own there wouldn't
be a big need to add pseudo-danger to the game.

These photos were taken with my new Olympus E-PL1 camera, the Sony NEX-3 having disappointed me enough in the using to send it back.  The Oly takes extraordinarly good photos although it has it's own short comings.

Next week we are off to the Great Southwest Scooter Fiesta.  I'm pretty sure it will be a different crowd there and probably not as interesting.  Should be fun though.  I wonder if the 81 crew from Mesa will have a booth?  Probably not but I'd pay $5 to see the reactions if they did.


Jac Brown said...

Wonderful shots. Great commentary. And I agree with you, the Oly is taking good pics. It seems especially nice and clear in the shadows. A good range from bright sunshine to deep shadow. Also, nice depth of focus. Are you shooting manually?

One question. In the last picture, how could you crop out the tank with the girl tied up?

Doug Klassen said...


Generally I shoot in aperture priority mode to control depth of field, adjust ISO accordingly, and let the camera pick a shutter speed. If I'm feeling lazy I'll put it in Program mode and let the camera make the decisions.

Cropping out the girl in the tank photo was very easy. Debbie told me I had to "or else."


FLHX_Dave said...

You have to let us know next time one of these things come up. WillyD and I have been to several "swap meets"...there are never any bikes there...just homemade mailboxes and planters made from old parts.

Awesome pictures. I loved this. I have not figured out the whole skull thing either...but I have to admit, I have been obsessed with skeletons since I was 8. Dunno' why though. Maybe it was "Jason and the Argonauts"...maybe.

Thanks for the trip!

Timothy Frazier said...

I have a $1,000.00 camera, but ten cent shaky hands and a 5 cent photography education. You do excellent photo blogging, my friend.

I wish I could locate a similar event in the Dallas Fort Worth area. I would happily spend days at such an event.

Doug Klassen said...

Dave, you guys need to hit the annual El Camino Swap Meet down in Long Beach. As far as I know it's the biggest on the west coast.

Timothy, my photo education is largely self-inflicted. Modern image stabilization in the camera helps with the shaky hand thing and auto-focus covers for the dimming eyes. Mostly if you just shoot a lot you slowly get better. I've been shooting since the '70s and I'm slowly getting better.

Unknown said...

I need to get to more of these swap meet type of affairs. I'm pretty sure my wife disagrees, the last one I came back from I told her I needed a '69 Triumph. She told me I did not. It's fun to dream, anyhow.

WooleyBugger said...

Enjoyed the post and pictures. Skulls are an over done deal anymore and I guess it's to show how bad ass the banker is on weekends.
I echo the comment on the last picture with the roped woman, but then ...that's just the pig in me. So you cropped it but you still have it in the archives don't you. Yep, you do. lmao

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