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

Friday, January 14, 2011

Radical Ride, 1977

Another from my personal photos Wayback Machine.  This one a street legal Honda 750 powered "kneeler" sidecar outfit owned by sidecar guru Doug Bingham.  Photo taken at the Griffith Park Sidecar Rally in 1977.   Looks like an E-ticket ride to me.

Update: See comments below by "Ruckus."  The rig was built by Doug Bingham but owned by others.  Also Ruckus comments "On the left handlebar you can just make out a bicycle bell. This was used to let the passenger know that a turn was approaching and which way we were going to go so you could set up for that corner."

"wake up" bell.
Thanks for the additional insight!


Swapan Pradhan said...

Thats indeed a very nice pic you got! But its the no that i loved the most and color as well. Sir, I salute to your devotion for moto-bikes

FLHX_Dave said...

I always thought that this would be a kick to rip around on.

Wow Doug...I had totally forgot about the kneeler. I think the last time I saw one was on the "Wide World of Sports" when I was 6

Webster World said...

That is pretty cool. They still ice race with something like take around here. Should be coming up soon.

toshi said...

Now,this picture is an answer for my long time question! this 21s!
I was looking for this street leagal kneeler for over 20years.since i saw this kneeler on tom petty's you got lucky music video and i was clash on this bike at first sight.
since then i had try to find about
this bike but couldnt find any information.first i thought was kawasaki GT-500 couse coler was green. thank you for up this picture and please check tom petty's music video on you tube.

rider from japan

Ruckus said...

I believe this bike was not owned in 1977 by Doug. The reason I say that is that I have ridden as the passenger of a bike that looked exactly like this and it was built by Doug but owned by a friend and his brother. I don't think there was more than one of these in 1977 so I assume that it is the same bike.
Anyway. If it is the same bike it was a blast to ride. Very stable, turns reasonably quick, enough power to be fun and more comfortable than I would have imagined. One of my favorites in over 40 years of riding and owning bikes.

Doug Klassen said...

Ruckus, thanks for your comment. My assumption that the rig was owned by Doug B. was based on the large Bingham decal on the front fairing but of course that doesn't necessarily indicate ownership. Sadly, I have no other picture of the rig from that day so we can't see a rider's name that might be on the opposite side. I saw this bike or a similar one up at the Rock Store about 1974 but have no pictures at all of that one.

No doubt lots of people got a thrilling ride on the machine; I wish I'd been one of them!

I've always found myself wondering what has become of interesting one-off machines like this one.

Ruckus said...

The bike was built by Doug B. and the brothers were friends of his. I have lost track of them a bit so I don't know where the bike is. And they used to take it to the Rock Store semi regularly. That's where I saw it for the first time in 73 or 74 don't remember xactly.
I'll bet it's in the garage of one of the brothers, they didn't seem like they were in any mood to sell it, last I heard.

Ruckus said...

Forgot to add a little fun info. On the left handlebar you can just make out a bicycle bell. This was used to let the passenger know that a turn was approaching and which way we were going to go so you could set up for that corner. Usually of course you could tell, like if you were on a twisty road, but not always. Right hand turns against the curb were fun, you had to hang out if the speed was anything at all but there was always the curb/head thing to look out for. Also my racing leathers have only one scrape on them. It was right shoulder from hanging off at a, let's just say, slightly illegal speed. I can still remember almost every foot of one ride of about an hour and a half and that was 35 years ago.

Doug Klassen said...

Ruckus, thanks for the fun insight into the kneeler. I've updated the entry with a close up of the bell.

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