Sunday, December 11, 2011

Hatt's San Quentin Toy Run 2011

I can't believe its December already, time for Hatt's San Quentin Toy Run. The weather was great this year, its usually cold and rainy this time of year. The good weather brought out some nice machinery.

A Vincent masquerading as a Norton.

After our first stop at San Quentin, we headed out on a tour of Marin County. Next stop was Peri's in Fairfax. Then after a stop at San Geronimo Valley, we headed for great mexican food at Los Guitaros in Novato. It was a great December ride, t-shirt weather most of the day and I won a couple of sweat shirts in the raffle.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Pat's Chopper

I've started looking for a bike to put together for next years Stampede. I found this little Yamaha XJ-750 on S.F. Craig's List. I rode over to South San Francisco to take a look. I met Sal who greeted me llike an old friend. Sal said that the bike belongs to his wife, Patricia, but she is ready for a bike with shock absorbers.
Sal's garage has a lot of character and is one of those places where people, like me, like to hang around. So over a cup of coffee, we talked motorcycles.  Sal has a soft spot for 500cc singles, SR an XT Yamahas. I spied an XT with a polished aluminium tank in a corner of the garage.

Pat's chopper is a little small for my idea of a Stampede bike. But if anyone is interested, drop me an email and I'll hook you up with Sal. He makes good coffee.

 Oh yea, Sal, those cigs are gonna kill ya!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

I call it, The Compassionate Medical Motorcycle Act

TRADE PROP 215 BLUE DREAM MEDS FOR RELIABLE MOTORCYCLE (san jose south)___________________________________
Date: 2011-10-24, 9:38PM PDT
Reply to: [Errors when replying to ads?]
I have some extra prop 215 blue dream meds, also have Haze\ Skunk. Both are 100% Organic. Great taste and smell. I am a valid CA.MM.card holder and you must be as well. I am looking to trade for a reliable motorcycle to get around town. I am open to make and model but reliabilaty and overall condition of bike is the most important factor. If you are interested in this trade then please hit me up, Thanks
JAY     (408) 555-0100     Please no texts, Thanks
When I read Jay's add on SF Bay Area's, Craig's List, my heart went out to him. Poor, brave Jay, gravely ill but still willing to do without some of his much needed medication in order to secure two wheeled transportation.
Yet there are millions of Californians, who, like Jay are forced to forgo much need medication in order to secure basic transportation. I call on the California Legislature to ignore the cost, as they have done so many times in the past, and immediately pass legislation to provide two wheeled transportation to those unfortunate Californians who are being forced to ride partially medicated.  
In a state where we have so much, surely no one should be forced to ride less than fully medicated!  

Friday, October 14, 2011

Scars on Scars

1972 BMW R75/5 Kick Start Lever

We have a match.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Chilly Billy Memorial Run 2011

After weeks of perfect weather the Rip City Riders, 6th annual Chilly Billy Memorial Run began under cloudy, threatening skys. Attendance for the poker run seemed good, Rip City Riders gave ride pins to the first 700 riders.
Marie and I signed up for the poker run at Michael's Harley Davidson. Then we hit the Redwood Cafe in Cotati where me met our friends for breakfast. Rocky was riding his wife's V-Rod, because of a slight malfunction of his own bike and Lance was on his Suzuki Hayabusa after a major malfunction of his Electra Glide. So, after coffee we headed north on Highway 101 to River Road.

River Road follows the Russian River and it's a good ride but heavy traffic and bicycles made sightseeing a passenger activity. Our first stop was at the Rio Nido road house, a good choice as there was plenty of parking. I drew a six of diamonds, not a great start for a poker hand. 
Our next stop was at The Blue Heron in Duncan Mills, after I drew my card my poker hand was pretty well shot and the people in the bar showed no sympathy.  After leaving Duncan Mills it was a few miles to Highway 1, then south to Bodega Bay and east to Petaluma. 

We arrived at the Petaluma fairgrounds and the weather was warming. There were a lot of people there. The local newspaper said that 10,000 people showed up for the bike show, car show, vendors, food and of maybe a cocktail.
If they could find the bar.

I really liked this sweet little Triumph. Simple and clean, I couldn't stop staring at it.

The Rip City Riders put on a great show. This was the 6th annual Chilly Billy Memorial run and the event gets bigger and better every year. Everyone had a great time, and funds were raised for two local carities, Zero Breast Cancer and Mentor Me Petaluma.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Famous Road Signs

 Zzyzx Road is on Highway 15 near Baker, California. I had a theory about what a Zzyzx was but I was wrong.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

The Town of Locke

The town of Locke, in the Sacramento Delta, was built by the Chinese. If you look up information about the town, you will find that it was founded in 1915 by Chinese businessmen after a fire in the Chinese section of nearby Walnut Grove. In 1934 Al Admai opened a restaurant called Al's Place, later called Al the Wops, and Al only served steaks. 

If you dig a little deeper into Locke's history you will find that Locke in the 1920's and 1930's was a rockin' town with Opium dens, gambling parlors, and of course girls. I have good information that Al Adami served more than steak. In the back room Al's "Ladies" were busy. Locke's close proximity to Sacramento, the State Capitol, gave our lawmakers a much needed break from the rigors of their lawmaking duties. The only door bell in town was wired to the gambling parlor to warn if the Sheriff came into town.

Now Locke is pretty tame but it's a fine ride to good destination where you can get a good meal but it sure would be interesting to see it back when.

Monday, August 1, 2011

The Real McCoy and the J-Mack

Lee and I took a ride to the town of Locke for lunch at Ed the Wop's.  Locke is on one of the hundreds of "islands" in the Sacramento River Delta.  There are several ways to get to Locke, I like to go by way of the Real McCoy and the J-Mack.
From Rio Vista on Hwy 12, we turned north along the main shipping channel.  After a few miles on the levee, we took the car ferry called the Real McCoy across Cache Slough to Ryer Island. 
We rode around Ryer Island to a smaller ferry named the J-Mack on Steamboat Slough.  The J-Mack is one of the last operating cable ferries.  A cable ferry pulls itself along a cable that is fixed between the banks of the river.  The ferries are free and even though the rides are short they are a lot of fun.

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Stampede News

I have just learned some news from the Stampede, it looks like Charlie The Nomad came in first. Chris Price came in second. It looks like 14 riders finished the race, 26 started. Weather caused problems this year, the riders had to dodge thunderstorms and tornadoes.

El Nomads bike was obviously well prepared. I think the engine is a late 70's Kawasaki 900 with a truly unique exhaust system.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Jim's KZ750 at the Stampede

I talked to Jim who had ridden from Alberta Canada to compete in the Stampede. Jim calls his Kawasaki KZ750, "Calamity Ensues" after the two female devils on the tank. Get it? Calamity and Sue, yes, Canadian humor.
Jim's bike had developed a intake manifold leak so he was in the motel parking lot with the carbs off using a little RTV to seal things up.
Jim took time from his repairs to talk with me and that's no small thing with the start of the race just hours away.
By now the Stampede is over, and though I don't know how anyone did, I hope Jim did well and had a good time.

Friday, June 24, 2011

The Brits Take on The Stampede

This is the sixth Stampede and there has never been a British bike entered, until now. This year with the Stampede off the Interstates, three Brit bikes, Norton, BSA and Triumph, stepped up to the challenge.

1970 BSA A65 Lightening #2

#5 1979 Triumph Bonneville

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Stampede 2011

The Stampede 6 is underway.  The Stampede is a race for hardtail choppers.  No windshields or fairings, no hard saddle bags and no rubber mounted engines are allowed. This year the Stampede started at South Lake Tahoe, California and will finish at the Greenleafe Inn in Pine Bluff, North Carolina. As I write this entry the 26 riders who started are about half way across the country.

The course is not revealed until the evening before the race. It was known that this year the course would avoid the interstate highways. It was to be two lane highway most of the way. I snapped a photo over some one's shoulder as the course sheets were passed out.
The race follows Highway 50, the Loneliest Highway in America, for 3100 miles then turns south to finish at Greenleafe Inn.
The people who are riding in the Stampede come from all over, and they rode their bikes to get to the starting line. You won't find any trailers hidden in the neighborhood.
I've got a load of photos and as soon as I can I'll post more.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Honda CL-77

     We hear about barn finds all the time, but the real gold is in garages. So when I'm in the neighborhoods I'm checking out garages for interesting machinery. If you leave your garage door open, I'll take a peek.
     I was really surprised to see a Honda Scrambler in a garage just around the corner from my house. Since I'm not shy, so I stopped and knocked on the door. I met Spence, who turned out to be a really nice guy. He was happy to show me his 1977 Honda 305 Scrambler.
     The 305 Scrambler, designated the CL-77, was produced between 1965 and 1968. There were about 64,000 bikes produced during that time.


The 305 Scrambler had up swept side pipes for more ground clearance that ended in a stylish muffler. Most people removed the muffler and either put a baffle in each pipe or put on a set of "Snuff-or-Nots." Here's a photo from the Internet that should explain Snuff-or-Nots. I think the muffler looks very stylish especially when compared to the really ugly black box on the later CL-350. Spence says he plans to restore the bike and has been collecting correct parts. He also plans an electronic ignition upgrade. The bike only has 12600 miles on the clock and has a nice patina. I urged Spence bring the bike back to stock and clean it without removing the patina of age that it has earned.

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Gordon Shuffles the Deck


My Friend Gordon send some photos of his new bikes. He sold his '77 XLCR, and bought a '75 Sportster XLCH which he turned into a (Then Came) Bronson bike.
XLCH-In, but changed
to a Bronson bike.

Gordon sold an Enfield, of which I don't have a photo and bought a '71 Triumph Daytona 500. 
Enfield-Out   Triumph-In

I think Gordon's latest adjustment to his collection is the sale of his XR883 in favor of XR1200X, which Gordon tells me he is going to set up for the track.



While some eschew possessions in their search for perfection. Gordon nears that state of contentment as he continues to shuffle the deck in the eternal struggle to find motorcycling perfection.