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Thread: motorbike memories

  1. #31
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    York
    Posts
    62

    Default Re: motorbike memories

    My family have always been involved in motorcycles - my dad was owner/manager of a Yamaha dealership, and he and my older brother (12 years my senior) raced motorcycles, including at the TT. Motorcycle sales were at their height (certainly here in York) in the late 1970's/early 1980's; the largest market being the commuter one. The Yamaha RXS100 was a top seller. On the sportier end of the market, the RD250/RD400 and the later watercooled RD350LC (powervalve) were the models with the most street cred, and popularity. It seemed like every 16 year old in those days had a moped - Honda Express; Yamaha "Fizzy" etc. However, as time went on, into the 1990's, the practicalities and expense of putting a moped on the road soared - the necessity to pass a "CBT"; rocketing insurance costs; fewer second hand bikes for sale due to decreased demand for them in the commuting market, etc. - The appeal of passing a "car test" at the age of 17 meant the hassle of messing about for a year getting a moped was really too much of an effort for the majority of teenagers.

    Of course, one or two did carry on the traditions of those before them. On my sixteenth birthday in February 1996, I passed my CBT (on a borrowed Yamaha BWS automatic moped) and had a year riding a "Suzuki Love" step-thru. Zero street cred, but it did the job and got me about town, and even on one occasion all the way to Scarborough - an 85 mile round trip from home! I passed my theory test (one of the first to complete one - using pen/answer sheet, not computer) the following year, and completed my full bike test. I was restricted to machinery of 33bhp for two years, before being allowed to take my pick of the bikes on sale! I picked up a seven year old Suzuki GP-100 two-stroke, which I had a lot of fun with for two years; before graduating to a Yamaha FZR600R (the forerunner to the "Thundercat"). After plodding through university, I finally opted to take my car test (outwith the period we're concerned about here, 2003), but only for the practicalities of mundane chores, such as shopping/gaining employment.

    These days, I restrict my biking activities to track days; the bikes of the 1960's to 1980's have a certain character and charm to them - not as fast or reliable as todays plastic rocket-ships, but at least they all looked, sounded and smelt unique! (Sorry for the ramble)

  2. #32
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    Liverpool
    Posts
    11

    Default Re: motorbike memories

    Been motorbikes in my family for a very long time. My nan had an Indian many moons ago, used to ride it around the Isle of Anglesey where she lived. My dad had a Norton as a young man on the isle. By the time the 70s arrived, my brothers had bikes. There was an array of BSA's, Ducati, Triumphs and even a Gilera. As we went into the 80s, they swapped their bikes for Jap bikes. I myself got into the bike scene, pillion only I hasten to add, and loved and married my biker man. Sadly when the kids came along out went the bikes. My brothers continued to ride and one still has his old BSA C15 plus a Yamaha. My other brother no longer rides. I got a new boyfriend 7 years ago after my divorce and enjoyed a brief spell of being a pillion once more on a Bandit 1200. We broke up after 2 years and I have just sold my biker gear only 2 weeks ago.
    I doubt I'll ever go on a bike again, but then again, who knows!
    I am good, but not an angel. I do sin, but I am not the devil. I am just a small girl in a big world trying to find someone to love.

  3. #33
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    York
    Posts
    62

    Default Re: motorbike memories



    Found a pic of my old Suzuki GP100 today, after I had got her back in decent shape as a bit of a "restoration" project. This must have been 1998/99 at a guess (bike was registered on a J Plate). Wish I still had it now, old two-strokes are becoming collectors items, even old run-of-the-mill workhorses like this.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails 162862_10150158774744619_965126_n.jpg  

  4. #34
    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    Rhondda Valley
    Posts
    536

    Default Re: motorbike memories

    I wanted a motorbike from the age of 14. My mother was dead set against it. At 15 I was determined I was going to have one. My intention was to have a moped at 16, then upgrade to a proper motorbike at 17.

    I bought a book titled, The Motorcyclists Handbook, at 15. It is long out of print, but gave good advice about road-craft, safety, maintenance, long distance riding and motorcycling in general. I read it from cover to cover numerous times. I've still got the book.

    Sixteen came and went. Seventeen came and went. Eighteen came...and almost went. It was now 1986, I was on a government scheme. Some money was now being earned. The government had changed the law on provisional motorcycle licences. Two years to pass your test, or be disqualified for one year before you could re-apply. My mother's friend's husband had been riding his motorbike on a provisional licence. He decided he was no longer interested in riding under the new law. The motorbike was put in a shed and largely forgotten about. I had been wondering what had happened to it for some time. My mother relented and decided she would ask about it. IT WAS STILL THERE! She was told if I wanted to buy it, I could.

    Things now started to fall into place. I went over to have a word with him. The motorbike was a Honda CG125. 1982 model, 4 stroke engine, single cylinder. He took it out of the shed. It was sold has seen. Therefore there was no MOT or road tax on it. I was a bit apprehensive about it, but it looked OK. It started without any problem. I was interested.

    Several days later I arranged to have a go on it, up and down the back lane. NO LICENSE, ROAD TAX OR INSURANCE. For about 15 minutes I rode it up and down the lane until it started to draw attention. Nosey old women mostly. I decide I would buy it. There was just 17000 miles on the clock. 250 he wanted for it. He agreed I could pay the remainder off weekly has I had most of the money to give him anyway.

    A quick application for my provisional licence, arrange insurance (my mother paid that) and arrange the MOT.

    Everything was now in place. I would collect the motorbike, bring it home, then arrange the MOT.

    The afternoon came to collect it. The bike was waiting in the garden, all cleaned up. I rolled it out into the lane. Problem, IT WOULD NOT START. It had a kick start on it, so even if the battery was flat, the engine would turn over and there would be a spark at the plug. I tried several times, nothing. I tried to bump start it, nothing. I rolled it back into his garden. His wife then told me to come back in two days time.

    Two days later, I returned. The bike was back in the garden. "It starts ok." He said to me. In goes the ignition key, turned the electrics on, kick down on the kick starter. NOTHING. He tried again nothing. He had changed the spark plug but tested it before screwing it into the cylinder. (Connect the high tension lead to the plug, rest plug against one of the cylinder fins, turn on the ignition then start. There should be a visible spark at the end of the plug.) There was petrol in the tank, and it was flowing through the carburettor with out problem. No reason why it would not start. The points were checked again, the gap was perfect. There was compression in the cylinder. There was no reason for it not to start. By now, I was getting a little fed up when I mentioned the lead to the plug. He had an idea. Cut approximately a quarter of an inch of the spark plug lead. This was done, reconnected to the plug, the motorbike started first time. I was all smiles.

    I rode the bike home, and duly secured it. The following day, I arranged for the MOT to be done. It would have to be done after the weekend. It was arranged for the Monday.

    Monday came. There was no reason for it to fail. Off I set. About two miles from the MOT centre, the bike seemed to slide about. Stopping I looked down. To my horror, the back tyre was flat. I HAD A PUNCTURE.

    Luck was on my side. The man I bought it off worked about a hundred yards away. Around the corner was a garage that could put a new inner tube in and put the tyre back on. Although we had to take the wheel off and put it back on ourselves.

    I arrived late at the MOT centre, but it was not a problem. The bike was tested. It passed.

    This was my first experience with motorbikes. It was surprising what I had already learned.

    Less than a year later, 1987, I had a permanent job....A dispatch rider. I was a dispatch rider from 1987-2004. I could write a book about that.



    This was like the first motorbike I had. It was coloured black. Unfortunately, it had a fire fly in it's death moments has a headlight. The dreaded 6 volt electrics.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails HondaCG125-1976.jpg  
    Who cared about rules when you were young?

  5. #35
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Location
    Christchurch uk
    Posts
    2,266

    Default Re: motorbike memories

    At school in the seventies pre CBT sixteen year old kids could buy a Yamaha 125 on HP

    Quite a lot six formers had them to the delight of the girls,

    Do you really believe the other side without provocation would launch so many ICBM's, subs and ships knowing that we would have no option to launch as well? It would break our MAD Treaty (Mutually Assured Destruction) not to mention the end of the world as we know it.


  6. #36
    Join Date
    Jul 2017
    Location
    London
    Posts
    215

    Default Re: motorbike memories

    Use to ride a klr 250 in the late 80s.
    But as a kid I use to have lots of stickers of racing motorbikes on my bed headboard. Click image for larger version. 

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    Click image for larger version. 

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  7. #37
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Brisbane
    Posts
    885

    Default Re: motorbike memories

    I can't remember if it was my 15th or 17th Birthday but a bloke up my road was selling a late 70s Yamaha DT50 for 50quid. I asked my dad if I could have it as my birthday present, he agreed.

    It was pretty much like this:



    It wasn't road legal as it didn't have a plate or anything so I wasn't allowed to ride it on the road. I used to wheel it to a mate's house nearby as he had a big garden to ride it in where my other mate also had his trials bike. We had to have the back wheel about 3" off the floor apparently due to laws when transporting it on the roads to his. I also used to ride it up and down my parents' driveway. The one time I did decide to take it for a blast up the road (sans helmet also) when i got back the local bobby was standing at the end of the driveway, i got a ticking off.
    Another mate's family were well into bikes and he'd bought a box of bits which they built, made a Yamaha trials Bike and a little honda monkey bike (plus a hotchpotch thing made with jap parts which we called the "itchifanni"), we took those and his brother's KTM250 (with wooden block instead of rear shock) around ont he back of his dad's flatbed (with us on the back holding them) to various public land to ride them. We also went to a local bike track, but by then my mate had got rid of his trials bike and had a Suzuki RM80.

    I can't remember when or why i got rid of it, but at the time it was great fun, taught me how to ride a bike and also basic mechanics on it, i think my dad quite enjoyed the odd ride too and working on it with me.

    that was my only motorbike, never had one after that especially on the road, perhaps due to the injuries my friends and uncle sustained on theirs on the roads.
    Last edited by Mulletino; 28-08-2017 at 03:48.

  8. #38
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Location
    Christchurch uk
    Posts
    2,266

    Default Re: motorbike memories

    Guy was studying at Leith Nautical College. On the way home one afternoon got stopped for speeding on his motorbike. The copper read the riot act about all the times he'd had to pick dead bikers off the road. The biker sat through this nodding humbly and eventually the copper sent him on my way with just a warning.

    When he got back to his digs he was asked why he was late.

    He replied: "It's hard to say."

    "What do you mean ?" they asked.

    "The Leith Police Dismissethed me."

    (Try saying that fast .. ) lol

    Do you really believe the other side without provocation would launch so many ICBM's, subs and ships knowing that we would have no option to launch as well? It would break our MAD Treaty (Mutually Assured Destruction) not to mention the end of the world as we know it.


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