Archive for ‘30’s’

December 23, 2017


Murder is Easy – Agatha Christie jape with multi-talented actor Benedict Cumberbatch as the lead detective in a 2008 television adaptation. Originally published in 1939 it was the successful mystery writers first step away from Hercule Poirot, though this TV show rolled in Miss Marple as the main protagonist with Benedict’s character Luke Fitzwilliam as a younger less-experienced ‘sidekick’. More to the point: what’s ‘e ridin’? Well a marvelous 1950 or 51 Triumph Speed Twin in glorious amaranth red. When are Triumph bringing that color back? It would look smashing on their new Bobber.

The blue car, tell us about the blue car! Well, that’s in the story too, the love interest, Bridget Conway, drives a powder blue 1960 MGA open top roadster.

Leather driving gloves, silk scarves and cases lashed to the parcel rack… how very English!

October 21, 2017

Autumn Day

All Fall in – we’re still experiencing unseasonably mild weather for late October day. A good ride out was planned, undertaken and enjoyed.

We stopped off at Morries Place in Ringwood McHenry County before a 40 mike sojourn into Wisconsin. I always enjoy peering at the old stuff Ed Zender has in his ‘showroom’ . A sample of vintage ‘cycles from the 30’s to the 70’s. The signs on the walls a suitable backdrop too. His workshop is lined up with many projects, maintenance jobs and carefully catalogued and shelved parts. 

August 23, 2017

The details are not the details. They make the Design

B&W – beautiful ’38 Velocette KSS. This single cylinder 350cc is vintage platinum best. Kam (Camshaft) Super Sport these saw racing success in the Twenties.  It’s the same model Charles & Ray Eames sat on in this wonderful portrait.

August 21, 2017

Red ‘n’ Green

On Show – there was some superb vintage cycles on show yesterday; here’s a small selection: a forest green Triumph TRW. The military 500cc side-valve developed for multi-use tasks: courier, sidecar, MP. A smart item that’ll keep service like a Sam Browne belt holding a holstered Webley revolver.

Orion’s Belt – This ’37 Ariel Red Hunter was parked up with a polished engine, gauge cluster, and high pipes. Tomato red tank accent and gold pin-stripe adds a splash of color. These were the sports bikes in the pre-war period. 

The Green Enduro – New knobbly off road tires behoove this ’68 Sachs powered Penton 125 Six-Days KTM built ‘crosser. Would be a good woods bike to hare through the forests of Michigan; which it looks like this one already does!

July 10, 2017


Fill ‘er up! Or so you would have asked Dick Dunkle, proprietor of the Gulf service station on the old Lincoln Highway (Route 30) that went cross country in the days before the Interstate system was laid. The terra-cotta tile work and old mechanical pumps as atmosphere. As did the rain stotting down on Bedford PA. The Minx sits in the forecourt: “one for the album!”

January 23, 2017

Wattle & Daub

Thatched – perfect English scene of a pair of couples heading out for a jaunt along some country lanes in the Home Counties. Stopping off for a pint at The Bull Inn, the local pub at Arborfield in Berkshire where this photo was taken. 

January 17, 2017

Doughnut Delivery

Giant Scarab – I spotted this patina-rich coffee & doughnut van scuttling about the City recently. Elegant hand painted script cheerily advertising a morning refreshment for construction and office worker alike. It’s a doughty International Harvester Metro Van, produced between 1938 and 1975 keeping its distinctive flowing form well into the sixties when its edges were squared off to meet a demand for something new. The flowing gumdrop lines were created by the capable hand of Mr Streamline himself, Raymond Loewy. 

January 6, 2017

Pretty Panthera 

Feline Friday – here’s one to chase away yesterday’s posted Mickey! Tigress lounges across the burly single 1930’s Triumph. 

March 22, 2016

Seeing Red

Belgium took the brunt of World affairs today with the heinous and cowardly attacks by terrorists in Brussels. Many dead, a shocked population and a further need to eliminate crazed fundamental belief systems that wish ordinary folk just trying to get on with their lives to be murdered for their empty cause. Just plain Wrong! Civilization needs to advance folks! Not degenerate into a Dark Ages.

Here’s a beautiful 1933 Belgian 500cc Gillet Herstal Supersport to remember that there are great things in the world to enjoy. 

Oh. And Belgian Chocolate…

July 6, 2015


My favorite Harley is the mid thirties 61c.i. Overhead valve E or EL models offering sporty 1000cc of engine in a beautiful machine. Engineering detail which epitomized the technology of its day.  

The very distinctive valve covers give the bike its unofficial name looking like a clenched knuckle.

A period article extols the virtues of the good oil supply used to cool these power thirsty engines.

July 5, 2015

Hog Wild

We  had a day out to Milwaukee… Finally went to the Harley Davison Museum. 

I static test rode a Fat Boy: comfy saddle and fairly slick operation. The wind-blown effect was an (appropriately orange) fan. 

Early grey fellows commenced a yearly procession of models. Basically bicycles with engines in ’em! 

 A wall of engines: flathead, knuckle, pan, evo… Even the BMW-like flat twin for desert warfare. The rorting sounds could be conjured at the press on an interaction screen. 

One view was a complete motorcycle…

Another its component parts…

Beautiful examples of all golden age bikes.

And an illuminated wall of tanks of the ages. 

A worthwhile destination when visiting Wisconsins Brew City.

July 1, 2015

More Goodies

there was plenty of eye candy at Motoblot. Each belonged to a dedicated owner who loves showing off their steed. Each washed to a mirror shine reflecting admirers faces in their perfectly designed curves. Each represents a history unto itself.

What was old now is new:

Indian. The new cruiser looks set for a haul along Route 66 from Chicago to Los Angeles. The old police bike would be a great ‘big road’ rider. 

  Kawasaki? Team Green knows about power – like this canny Eddie Lawson bicep is set for action.  
The Purple People Eater:  two stoke powerband terror of the seventies would scare the mane off a lion. The Mach IV 

The bumblebee world traveller is the much desired BMW GS1000. Big legs for long distances. 

A weary looking edge worn Beemer yearns for Barvarian strasse to plod along…

 More fun than a barrel of baby sloth (look it up you’ll agree that’s a lot of fun!)

June 25, 2015

  Hugh (the other) Laurie on his chosen ride: a Triumph Bonnie. We also know him as Bertie.  


Wooster with indispensable essential valet Jeeves. The perfect pairing for a perfect comedy fro PG Wodehouse… 

June 20, 2015

Le rouge drapeu à damier

If you just so happen to be at the old banked racetrack in Montlhery France this weekend you could do a lot worse that go and see vintage racers haring around the velodrome. This years promotional poster is aptly graphic for a period event. Three color screen is just perfect! (Well a couple of other colors too) Red haired checker waver is suitably elegant. 

June 4, 2015

Put that in your pipe and smoke it


Quite a dapper chap in his spats, plus fours, cardigan and briar pipe perched on his lip. Missus looks on in glamorous attitude: no doubt looking forward to a wind blown spin letting her coat drift behind.  Das ist ein gut mottorad.