Archive for September, 2017

September 30, 2017

Twist the throttle, corner, repeat

Half Mile – grand day out to the Walworth County Fairground located in Elkhorn Wisconsin to see the limestone track racing. Fast motorcycles of sixties iron to modern 2-stroke screamers were run to great effect. Here is Jake Zender, son of Morries Place owner Ed who raced this Triumph twin. Steel shoe scuffing around the gravelly track as knobbly tires throw up stone and dust into the crowd. Perfect weather too!

Advertisements
September 29, 2017

.. they shall inherit the Earth

Blessed are the Rockers – on this day in 1916 the cartoonist known simply as Giles was born. His inked single panels were both full of detail yet graphically spare. Typically commenting on topical news items or daily English life the collection annuals became a record of the years events. This splendid piece shows the Ton-Up Club 59 having their Cafe racers blessed by the Reverend Bill Shergold. Also known as ‘Farv’ – cockney accented father, he owned the original of this particular strip.

September 28, 2017

Bunny

Entertainment for Men – Playboy was first published 63 years ago here in Chicago by bon vivant Hugh Hefter, who died yesterday aged 91. It promoted a sophisticated male lifestyle with writing, art, fashion, and a Playmate of the month who adorned the cover as well as centerfold. 

September 27, 2017

Rocket

Mach 3 – Redhot firestarter. Three cylinder 500cc two-stroke in immaculate restored condition. This hooligan toy was loud, fast, and dangerous. Kawasaki H1 was the quarter mile king for a short while in the early 70’s

September 26, 2017

Countin’ 

NBT DGR FAB – plenty of vintage motorcycles out on the road last Sunday. These ones in particular piqued my interest. A pre-unit featherbed framed Triton (owned by organizer Larry Fletcher), a BSA C11 single , and a clean example of the great Triumph Trident. Like a one, two, three..

September 25, 2017

Framed

DGL LSD DGR – found this great ‘in-action’ shot of yours truly as some photos from yesterday’s ride emerge. Photo: Grant Schwingle

September 24, 2017

DGR

Distinguished Gentlemen’s Ride – a huge turnout for the mass ride in Chicago today. Everyone dressed up to the nines and a super route was taken directly through downtown and along Lake Shore Drive. 90 degree weather was eased by a pleasant breeze off the azure waters of Michigan. There was about 700 riders all told. 

September 23, 2017

Flat Track Men

Oval Dirt – history in color! The greats Dick Mann (2) BSA, Gene Romero (20) Triumph, and Mart Lawwill (18) H-D, look beat after what will have been a ‘edge-of-your-seats race. 

September 22, 2017

K West – 23 Heddon Street

Lady Stardust-

People stared at the makeup on his face 

Laughed at his long black hair, his animal grace 

The boy in the bright blue jeans 

Jumped up on the stage 

And lady stardust sang his songs 

Of darkness and disgrace

And he was alright, the band was altogether 

Yes he was alright, the song went on forever 

And he was awful nice 

Really quite out of sight

And he sang all night long 

Femme fatales emerged from shadows 

To watch this creature fair 

Boys stood upon their chairs 

To make their point of view 

I smiled sadly for a love 

I could not obey 

Lady stardust sang his songs 

Of darkness and dismay

David Bowie – Tge Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust & the Spiders from Mars (1972)

September 21, 2017

Nine

Three by Three – something like this would make a terrific early birthday present for me… boxes of components; frame and wheels; engine cases with crank and head. Would need a parts book, workshop manual, clear workbench, and several spare evenings (honey?). Well, I don’t smoke, gamble or drink heavily… gotta have at least one vice!

September 20, 2017

On Patrol 

Vietnam – there is currently a phenomenal documentary on PBS by Ken Burns about the dreadful conflict in south west Asia during the sixties. Though mostly fought on foot through dense jungle, of from helicopters, here are some images and information about the use of some lightweight motorcycles utilized for single-track reconnaissance…

You Meet The Nicest People On the Trails of War Zone C

TAY NINH – Like Hell’s Angeles, the Rat Patrol, and the Wild Ones all rolled into one, the Reconnaissance Patrol of the 3d Battalion, 22d Infantry Regulars prowls War Zone C with 175-cc motorcycles leading the rest of the patrol.

The four motorcycles were introduced into the patrol by the Regulars’ battalion commander, Lieutenant Colonel Robert Carmichael, who wanted a fast and efficient way for his reconnaissance element to investigate the swarm of trails that twist through the marshes and jungles of what used to be a reliable sanctuary for enemy troops.

“Knowing where the enemy is not is almost as good as knowing where he is,” Carmichael says. “This mobile unit can cover a great deal of territory in a very short time, which enables us to gain information on the whereabouts of the enemy.

In addition to the motorcycles, the reconnaissance unit includes Rat Patrol Type vehicles equipped with machine guns.

Patrol Leader First Lieutenant Stephen Campbell, Falls Church, Va., takes his men out at dawn every morning, with the flack jacket, crash helmet-clad cyclists leading the way. The unit has already uncovered several mortar and rocket sites used by enemy forces.

Major Jospeh Hacia, the Regulars’ executive officer, is convinced of the value of using the motorcycles. “At first I was very leery of the whole idea, but now I am confident it was a good one,” Hacia says. “Recon has provided us with valuable information which normally we would not have.”

September 19, 2017

Dealer

Repairs under Warranty – that’s what was behind the dealers doors in the 70’s. Poor management, product, and development back in the U.K. Meant shiploads of Bonneville’s, Trophy’s, and Tridents were sent ‘Statesward in various levels of quality… the red overlay hints at the bloodshed that was to be… well as they said back then: “You meet the nicest people on a Honda!”

September 18, 2017

Three is the Magic Number 

Triptych- I’m starting to put feelers out for a project. This time instead of a rebuild using a plethora of parts from all points of the compass I’d like to start with a solid mostly original titled bike that runs and do a clean restoration to make it more Show-worthy. These Triumph triple Tridents seem like a worthy undertaking.

September 17, 2017

Parthenocissus tricuspidata

Ivy League – dusted-off and kicked the wee green tiger to life earlier today. Took it along a few alleys and around a couple of parking lots. It’s a friendly little thumper that is light to maneuver in tight turns and when bumpy undertire. Need to plan for a trip to some off-road facility to get it around a trail, over a dune, or through some woods.

September 16, 2017

A Door Ajar

When is a Triumph not a Triumph? When it’s a Kawasaki KZ400… some youth punk has blacked-out his little twin; draped an old anorak over the back as a saddle; and daubed the Triumph logo across its tank in red, the modern Hinckley logo mind you! Like some Lisbeth Salander (she with the Dragon Tattoo) heap- it’s both goth and grunge.