Archive for ‘Design’

May 20, 2017

Oil & Ink

Selfie Sketch – trying out a new brush tipped drawing pen- here’s the first result. Based on a selfie view sitting astride the Bonnie. Not quite Jack Kirby but not bad for a 10 minute scribble.

April 22, 2017

Indian Brit

Go Skate! – Vert maestro Steve Caballero shows off his immaculate pre-unit ’52 Triumph custom with builder Bryan Thompson giving it a thumb’s up. The nostalgia oozes all over the bike: from the script tank badge and gold pinstriping, to the girder forks and saddle-maker leather seat or the leather handgrips with reversed control levers. It’s called ‘The Scout”. Good name.

April 2, 2017

Citrus Cycle

X-75 Redux – Here’s a good looking beast: a nineties 900 triple revisioned in the punchy orange and yellow color scheme used by Craig Vetter on the mud seventies 750 Trident. 

March 14, 2017

Pi

π – defined as the ratio of a circles circumference to its diameter, this mathematical constant is ubiquitous to the universe. It also has meaning for the motorcycle from Wheels to discs, gears and cogs, dials & caps, and lights. 

February 28, 2017

Liquid Engineering 

Oiler – here’s a stunning graphic advertisement from a late sixties magazine with no. 1 Gary Nixon powering his Triumph flat tracker in a somewhat psychedelic manner. Castrol

February 17, 2017

Try Triumph 

Three Twins and a Triple – let’s close the week off with this clutch of Hinckley goodies. The new cafe 900 Street Cup in bumblebee yellow striping and black engine cases certainly looked the part. A pearly tanked Speed Triple sitting like a repose cat ready to strike its prey. ‘Hard tail’ Bobber sits low and purposeful (I felt a bit cramped on it) ready to customize with a catalogue full of eye candy. Finally the sublime Thruxton in ‘Go-Faster’ red: I could look at this all day…

For some reason I didn’t take any photos of the Tigers… the 800 seems to be the most practical bike out there.

February 15, 2017

Stick & Rudder

A Good Viewpoint – there’s nowt better than being in the pilots seat of a fast motorcycle. Low bar angle, poise for streamlining, and a speedo maxing out at the double ton. The Big Green ZX14 from Kawasaki is one such beast. Surely a rocket of the ballistic type. It feels sturdy. Then there’s the cockpit of the Thruxton. Beautiful detailing and exquisite visual balance. I’ll take one of each please!

February 6, 2017

Tic-Toc

At the third stroke it shal be eight thirty precisely- fancy illuminated dealership wall clock. Backlit with neon it would let salesmen know when it was their tea break or buyers know how long they’d been ogling the latest models.

January 19, 2017

Noble Gassing

Neon – 102 years ago today French inventor Georges Claude patented the gas discharge tube, more commonly known as a Neon Tube. Formed into pictographs and writing they herald a company’s identity or message. 

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. 

December 23, 2016

A Bridge Too Far

Sixty Eight – a pair of freshly minted Bonneville’s with their owners under the delicately suspended span of the Mount Hope Bridge between Bristol & Portsmouth on Rhode Island across Narragansett Bay. Engineering marvel is a backdrop to a motorcycle marvel. The bridge opened in 1929 a decade or so before Ed Turners development of the parallel twin engined machines that would culminate in the classic 60’s Bonnie’s.

December 22, 2016

Hisss

 Serpents Kick – brass pedal and hoof: some brutally ornate bobbers have bespoke components such as this well wrought kick-start lever. Something quite sinuously pleasing about it.

December 11, 2016

Fly the Flag

Poster – strong graphical imagery for the Small Heath armory and motorcycle makers. From gun to enjun they were one of the big British exports during the days of the Empire. The pre unit twin cylinder motor is the centerpiece of this ‘colliery banner’.

December 10, 2016

Red Tank

BSA Bobber print – crisp ink impression of a lowrider Beeza by artist Blake Wiley. Thumbprint signature is a neat touch. 

December 6, 2016

Speed Stripes 

Magic Arrows – Stark graphic with multicolored speedy arrows and definitive action of the (then) new Triumph triple superbike.