Teh Squeaky Wheel
That is one creepy helmet.
Happy Friday, GN.
Happy Friday, Gerbil Nation!
Good morning, Sven!
Mac -- I can just imagine you cruising the highways in that helmet.
I might have worn a helmet more if I had that one.
Paddy, Back in the 70s I was riding my big black Norton Commando with my first wife on the back. She was wearing horse riding gear from when she had a horse and I was wearing leathers. We both had helmets. A CHP pulled us over on Highway 17 as we were starting back from Santa Cruz to San Jose. We both removed our helmets and I unzipped my jacket, an old Highway Patrol type jacket. She looked like the girl next door and I had very short hair and was wearing a white shirt and black necktie. The officer was about half way to us when he saw us and stopped and did a double take. It was obviously not what he expected to see and he was visibly off balance. He kind of stammered and said he stopped us because my side mirror was cracked. It was in place and functional, I don’t know if he even saw it before, but he quickly wrote a fix-it ticket and let us get on our way. I think he was embarrassed. We laughed at his reaction for a long time after that. I normally dressed like that, even when working in my yard or working on my car or bike, with an old fatigue jacket over it, so I had seen that surprise before, but it was better with both of us. We are to the far left in the picture. Long, long ago!
That Norton was a good-looking bike. How bad were the vibrations from that big, vertical twin? Rubber engine mounts can only do so much.
True. It was a bit more than just motor mounts, the engine, transmission, and swing arm pivot, were mounted on a sub-frame. This was mounted to the mainframe with a system that was supposed to let the engine move on the vertical plane but not let the main frame flex. It worked well when cruising, I did not find it uncomfortable, but at idol it shook like a jack hammer. A friend was sitting on the bike which was up on the center stand with the engine idling. He blipped the throttle a couple of times, to 2,000 to 2,500 rpm and said it wasn’t so bad.. I just pointed to the 4,000 on the tach. When he revved it up the whole bike rotated on the center stand about 20 to 30 degrees. His eyes got huge and he climbed off quickly. That motor started out as a 500cc and became famous as a hot tuned 750cc. Mine was an 850. They detuned it some, lower compression and less cam, for emission and crappy gas, but it was a beast still. The clutch was from the Morris Minor car. The transmission was only a four speed but until the big Kawasakis it was the fastest quarter mile bike you could buy. Even when it had about half the HP it was 100 pounds or more lighter than the big Japanese bikes and easily out handled them. I replaced my 21 tooth countershaft sprocket with a 23 tooth. I could pull 60 mph in first, 85 in second, and 105 in third. It was a rather awesome bike when it decided to run. Those footpegs were not hinged and I had both those and the muffler clamp bolts scraped in from dragging them at high speeds in turns. The good handling probably saved my from my self.
I rode a friends mid-60’s Triumph 500 in Baja. It was a beast with plenty of low end. I remember when he bought a sand rail with a Porsche engine. Much like your Norton, he could get serious speed out of the first three gears. When he took it out in the dunes, he found it was more vehicle than he could handle.
My dirt riding was very short, up in Hollister Hills on a friends Honda 125 Elsinore. I ended up face down with the bike on top of me. I know several people that gave up street riding and went dirt, but I like traction and unrutted roads, so I preferred street.
That rail sounds like a monster in dirt. What some people did with those things was incredible.
I wanted a thumper for a while, but that twin was hard enough to start. I think I weighed about 140 pounds and if I stood on the kick start lever it just sank through. I had to jump up and kick through with the momentum from coming down. When it was in a good mood it started nicely and was very impressive. When it was in jerk mode it was a beast. Being Lucas electrics and English carbs, it was in jerk mode too often.
That Isolastic frame made the wheelbase a little longer than the competing Triumphs. I once was racing a friend who had a 750 Bonneville on Old Stage Road. I could not get ahead of him on the tight curves, but when things opened up and we were corning at 90 plus his bike got less stable and a bit twitchy. I passed him and ran away. Neither of us were very experienced riders, but the Norton was more comfortable at high speeds.
One of the few times I did not have a tie on.
You were a good looking feller in your younger days, Mac -- not that you aren’t now.
Thank you, but I’m not.
Russia, Russia, Russia. Reading the news about the Pentagon leaks that claim America provided real-time targeting information to Ukraine that led both to the sinking of one, and now maybe two, Russian warships and the killing of Russian generals.
This bullshit is going to get out of control. We are culpable here and essentially at war with Russia. If we gave Ukraine the weapons and then told them where to aim and when to fire, it makes no difference if an American wasn’t the one pulling the actual trigger.
I doubt that Russia won’t retaliate against the US in some fashion -- if the shoe was on the other foot we would, and have. And with Brandon in charge, I’m not hopeful for a favorable outcome.
Doing it is one thing (plausible deniability), but bragging about it just gives Putin a reason to escalate his war efforts. The adults are back in charge!
This is what mine looked like.
Good night everyone.