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adrenalin rush
mum dad
soda pop
down pipe
granddad
Motorcycles, Affairs Of The Heart
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Motorcycles, Affairs Of the Heart

Motorcycles, an affair of the heart, when did it all start, i must go back 35 years, i was a teenager living in 70s England, with glam rock, long hair and glitter, that's just the blokes.

It was all great fun, record sales were good, no digital downloads then, all lovely vinyl with those fantastic album covers, but music, although i liked it was not my big passion, it was bikes, motorbikes.

One minute i was watching kids T.V and swigging at my cresta soda pop, the next i was hurtling through the countryside on my mates Triumph tiger cub 200, i didn't care i couldn't stop, i didn't care i couldn't see, the noise from that old single through just a down pipe was intoxicating. I had seen them on the roads, on T.V, some of the older kids had them, but to ride one myself and be in control, well sort of, was out of this world.

It was a moment in time, possibly only 10 minutes, but i was in essence, Blown Away.

Then it started, mum, dad, i want a motorbike, what do want one of those noisy smelly things for mum would say and there dangerous and she was bang on, nothing else came remotely close in the excitement stakes. Dad would talk about the old days when his dad, my granddad rode bikes, stories about Panthers, Ariels and BSAs not to mention the many more machines of the day, long since gone. The day my dads BSA A7 caught fire on his way to navel barracks and he left it in the ditch and never went back for it. I have often wondered if that old BSA is still lying in that ditch in Hampshire ? but my dad would finish his enthusiastic reminiscing with, but your safer in a car.

My first bike was a 1965 Honda c95, i paid a mate 20 quid for it, a 150cc i think, twin cylinder four stroke, pressed steel frame. I t was a rather chunky looking thing with big mudguards, square headlight, blue and chrome tank, it was a beauty and it was all mine. It would give me a adrenalin rush to sit astride it and start it up, first kick every time. I rode it around the garages for a while and then, whats inside all this steel, how does it work ?so it slowly became a jumble of parts in my dads shed, only to be purchased by my mates dad as a rebuild project some time later.

35 years on and 15 or so bikes later, i still ride to work and back, not in the snow, my old yamaha fj1200 being a little on the heavy side, but they are in my blood now and there to stay. Although some machines have been problematic and given me many headache at times, they all seem to have their own character. Some would have a sweat engine but the handling was poor, others handle great but have poor engines.

As a rule a machine well maintained and ridden with some respect especially if getting on in years will provide good reliable service year after year. My old yam 1988 still does the business, a heavy bike but still very much a usable machine with exceptional mid range power and comfort, with more than enough top end speed for all but full on petrol heads where 150 mph means your still only half way through the gears, track day material.

Looks like my youngest may have the passion, um ??

Cheers, thanks for reading my brief article. Mark


Street Talk

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