Archive for ‘Design’

March 17, 2018

Lean and Green

Saint Pádraig – The Emerald Isle’s 5th C apostle Paddy is celebrated worldwide by the Irish in green colored jubilation. March 17th celebrates his life and gives Gaelic peoples an excuse to eat and drink and revel. This Triumph bobber looks like it was fed on corned beef and cabbage with a petrol tank topped-up with Guinness.

February 2, 2018

Sex Sells

Descriptive Leader – when illustrating the superlative virtues of a new and better item it was all the rage to label obvious physical particulars as top-notch characteristics you couldn’t do without. Of course… draping a lassie along the length of it goes a long way too…

January 27, 2018

Side by Side

Combination Lock – ready to drive around the Ring of Kerry with your partner by your side is this emerald patterned sidecar outfit a la Trident. Quite daring in its appearance but back in those days all this psychedelic were the rage.

“Oh, we ain’t got a barrel of money,

Maybe we’re ragged and funny

But we’ll travel along

Singing a song

Side by side.”

January 21, 2018

Mr & Mrs

Stylin’! – Motorcycle clothing can ensure unqualified coolness; but make sure you have the hair-do, heels and neckscarf to compliment the look otherwise forget it! Cafe’d moto is a late Sixties Honda CB450 Black Bomber. Sunglasses are aviator. Silk cravat? Pure Carnaby Street…

January 19, 2018

We Can Do It!

Sassy Siren – sunny smile under a blue sky. Personalized scrambler with funky tank graphics and well lagged pipes. Workmanlike clogs too. Rosie the Riveter lives!

January 13, 2018

The Best Thing since Sliced Bread

Use your Loaf – here is what I would call a “nippin’ clean” example of a Triumph Trident. Immaculate from head to toe with what I believe is a well proportioned look complete with the idiosyncratic “bread bin” tank.

Historical note: the first commercially produced sliced bread was July 7th 1928.

January 9, 2018

Toy Motorbike

Tinman – clockwork motor wound up with a small key. These brightly colored toys are fun to look at; both the illustrated mechanics as well as the riders clothing. Some original examples can reach prices like a real motorcycle… my favorite is the couple riding smartly on the top right.

January 3, 2018

The Rob Roy Bike

Sage Rage – a wonderfully detailed Thruxton in mint green with a nicely balanced Dunstall fairing. Built by Mike Sadler of Division Motorworks in Canada as directed by owner Patrick McGregor. The side panel is adorned with the clan crest and the motto: Royal is my Race.

December 18, 2017

Trois sur Cinq

Five of Three – though only in production from 1968 until 1975 the deathbed gasp of Meriden based Triumph was a stout hearted machine that came a little lacking and a little late with the appearance of Honda’s CB750. But in those short 7 years while the company was self destructing the model adapted as it could to meet the demands of the riding public. The first part of its life as the T150 saw a 750cc three cylinder, dry-clutch, with drum brake giving way to disc, and imaginative detailing such as the now classic ray-gun silencers. It’s final iteration under the T160 designation saw an electric start fitted, gear shifting moved to the left, and the confine tilted forward to improve weight distribution. The tank colors aren’t bright primary or indeed complementary ones, but are quite sophisticated hues that are very much associated with the late sixties and early seventies.

December 17, 2017

Cyclone Cycle

X75 Variant- typically the orange and yellow blaze tanked three cylinder Hurricane sits under a Triumph badge. Developed by bodywork guru Craig Vetter they have become much sought after Motorcycles. Here’s something a little more different and in some ways even better looking. A BSA Rocket Three ‘gin shoehorned into a Norton Featherbed frame… NorBSA X75s is the sublime creation. One-Two pipes, alloy rimmed wheels and decent front stoppers say this bike means business.

December 14, 2017

Newton’s Inspiration

Green Goddess- one of my favorite colors is apple green (well, Kawasaki Green to some…) so I particularly like that hue perfectly used on this late 60’s Trident. The black accent swoops on the tank balance perfectly with the eyebrow tank badges.

December 9, 2017

Hunting Dog

Buonacittà – the Triumph twin engine used in the Bonneville was imported to a town called San Lazzaro in Italy where Leopoldo Tartarini designed a limited run motorcycle called the Grifon. Built by Italjet around 600 were made between 1968 & 1971.

December 7, 2017


Wooler – one of the more esoteric motorcycles from the mid Twentieth Century was the swansong of John Wooler. A vertical flat four with truly inspiring styling for its day – (vertical H) The petrol tank extending beyond the steering head with front mounted headlight are signature.

Sidenote: I grew up in a village in North Northumberland called Wooler.

December 5, 2017

A to B

Black Electrical Tape – this about sums it up. After poring over maps to memorize roads, junctions, towns, and other landmarks; you’d take a folded-up map and either stuff it in a front pocket or, as in this case, tape it onto your bike. Ideally in a waterproof Ortlieb clear map case.

December 1, 2017

A Hooligan

Oranges are not the only fruit – singer Julia Haltigan sitting pretty in rust colored jacket, sienna corduroy pants