Archive for ‘80’s’

June 22, 2019

Two Wheels Good

Motoblot | The annual pilgrimage to Chicago’s main open air motorcycle gathering was had today. Weather cooperated after stormy forecasts. Plenty to look at amongst the offering. The KZ900 in sparkly brown and oranges was a notable example; as was a display of the Danish in-line 4 workpony’s Nimbus.

April 22, 2019

The Earth Roared

Earth Day | What better way to go out there and explore what our planet has to offer and see how beautifully fragile our home rally is than on the back of a Tiger. For nearly a Century there have been sharp clawed Moto’s roaming the globe looking for earthly adventure.

March 27, 2019

Most Excellent!

Theodore “Ted” Logan | Keanu Reeves is known for many iconic movie roles (Johnny Utah, Neo, John Wick) but the first was as one half of the dim witted Californian duo Bill & Ted. They travel through time, in a phone booth, meeting historical figure thus ensuring good high school grades and eventual fame for their band Wyld Stallyn’s. A future utopian society based on their music depends on them not flunking high school.

It was just announced last week that a third B&T film is going to be made for release in 2020. Bodacious dude!

Keanu is a very keen motorcyclist, being seen on all kinds of rides including this contemporary Norton. He also formed a company called Arch Motorcycles building high end custom bikes. We’ll cover this in a separate post.

“Strange things are afoot at the Circle-K”

March 11, 2019

“…I’d rather be happy than right any day.”

Slartibartfast | The renowned Magrathean planet designer who won awards for his coastline design of the Norwegian fjords. These are roads I would most certainly like to travel upon with two wheels.

Today -11th March – is interstellar Towel day; being the birthday of Douglas Adams (1952-2001)

February 5, 2019

Arcade Games

TRON – here’s a blast from the past. Early CGI from 1982’s outing into the realm of the program and user. Light Cycles race for domination of the grid with wall like trails. Jeff Bridges played main character Flynn in his typical laconic style.

January 24, 2019

Toon Time

The Hill – climbing up from the historic and commercial center of Newcastle is Westgate Road. It literally was the west gate of the medieval town that following the line of the older Hadrians Wall towards the sunset. Its role as a meeting spot for travelers is therefore ingrained. For several decades it has been the popular venue for motorcycle gatherings centered around the numerous bike shops, chippy’s and cafes. I remember as a wee un coming down from North Northumberland twice a year to go to see an ophthalmologist at the General Hospital at the top of the road. My mother and I would take a bus from the City Center to the appointment and I’d look out of the window at the bikes; exciting stuff for a young lad! It’s popularity is waning but there are some stalwarts holding the flame aloft for any roaming bikers needing an excuse to gawp at new models; or enjoy a lunch at a greasy spoon washed doon wi’ a mug o’tea.

January 19, 2019

Playtime

LEGO – always a favorite for learning about building and creating. Here is a motorcycle themed set I’d never seen before. A motorbike dealership set from 1984. Complete with showroom, helmet display and office, as well as a little flower bed out front.

January 9, 2019

Fettled & Fast

Pops – The post-war period in Japan saw a push in engine tuning to wring out any available additional horsepower to not just be faster but the fastest. This would eventually lead to the superbikes of the seventies and eighties and the current flock of hyper sports.

Leading this evolution of power and speed was Hideo ‘Pops’ Yoshimuro (1922-1995). After maintaining aircraft for the Japanese Empire during WW2 he redirected his masterful talents to the British bikes being brought to the land of the rising sun by American servicemen. This photo shows our man astride a fettled BSA preunit drag bike readying for a speed run.

Later he shifted his works and racing team to California where big reliable Japanese superbikes like the Kawasaki KZ and Suzuki GS’s went on to dominate the burgeoning AMA road racing circuit.

December 19, 2018

… or Bust!

Mini Me – latest update from my cousin Keith Wallace and his Mini project. Engine in, wheels on, steering and suspension fitted. I’m recommending red body with white roof like a mid-sixties Monte Carlo rally in Cooper regalia.

November 13, 2018

Curiosity is the lust of the Mind

Calvin & Hobbes – my favorite comic strip of ALL time is the wonderful adventures of a boy and his tiger. The world needs more insights of a curious six year old and his feline companion.

October 28, 2018

All I wanna do is…

I want to ride my bicycle- So goes the Queen song from their ’78 LP Jazz. Well, about that time riding your bike was the best thing to do! I had a couple of Raleigh’s, a chopper, a racer and friends who had BMX’s and other kinds of two-wheeled fun. Top Left is the king of kid cool: The Chopper, long seat, ape bars, three speed gear changing with central stick. Wobbly to ride by who cares! Top Center: The Grifter, heavy off road looking monster, precursor to the Bicycle Moto X of a later date. It’s rear hub made a distinctive clickety sound. Top Right: The Bomber, another weighty dreadnaught of a bike. It’s lines were driven from the US stumpjumpers being ridden in the Rockies and copied by youth sticking cow horn handlebars on their roadsters. Lower Left: The Arena, a road bike for speed, with true derailleur gearing, narrow seat and drop bars. Lower Center: BMX Burner, a true BMX offering for dirt tracks where knee and elbow padded racers could swoop berms, hit whoop-de-woos, and soar across tabletops. Lower Right The Maverick: an early iteration of the Mountain Bike craze that we’re still in to this day. It’s knobbly tires were good for muddy roads, cantilever brakes to stop on a dime, 15 gears for any adventure laden trail.

Two Wheels Good!

September 4, 2018

Survivor

The Eye of the Tiger –

“Risin’ up, back on the street

Did my time, took my chances

Went the distance, now I’m back on my feet

Just a man and his will to survive

So many times, it happens too fast

You trade your passion for glory

Don’t lose your grip on the dreams of the past

You must fight just to keep them alive

It’s the eye of the tiger, it’s the thrill of the fight

Risin’ up to the challenge of our rival

And the last known survivor stalks his prey in the night

And he’s watchin’ us all with the eye of the tiger”

August 24, 2018

Magnifying Moto’s

Close-Up – finishing off the week with some choice details of several motorbikes from last weekend. From Arial, Honda, Kawasaki, BMW, to Norton and Triumph. Some original, some personalized; from badges to pinstripes; tank, fairing, frame and fender.

August 16, 2018

Michigan Music Ma’am’s

Like a Prayer- the Queen of Pop reached the age of 60 today. Madonna has spent the last several decades rewriting the lyrical content and reinventing a visual style in the music industry. Here she pouts in true Vogue style with a BSA .

Today also sadly saw the passing of the Queen of Soul Aretha Franklin, whose voice sang across the ages from the social unrest of the Sixties, The Blues Brothers in Reagan’s 80’s, to Obama’s inauguration in 2009. R-E-S-P-E-C-T

July 12, 2018

Silver Dream Racer

Break a Leg! Period post seventies shenanigans as singer David Essex and the late great racing driver James Hunt lad it up on a Triumph T-140. Hunt broke his leg skiing thwarting a possible comeback in 80′ with McLaren.