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David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
3/11/11 6:34 p.m.

We're celebrating Bike Week here in Daytona Beach right now, which begs a question: Anyone here into vintage bikes? If so, what's your poison?

BoxheadTim SuperDork
3/11/11 7:25 p.m.

I've got a bunch of them, but somehow can't get around to put into my Readers Rides:

  • '81 BMW R100RS, made to look like a '79 Motorsport RS special edition, fitted with Krauser 4V heads and a bunch of other speed parts. More midrange punch than a regular R100RS and it's still got the continent-crossing ability of the RS.

  • '76 Morini 3 1/2 Sport, wire wheel/disk brake, which is the rarest combo on these. Gives you brakes that work in the dry while still giving you the classic looks

  • '68-something Morini Corsaro 125cc Supersport. Very long term resto project, extremely rare (rumours mention about 100 made) and completely not sought after . Mainly needs cleaning up and a few rubber parts fixing up, then see if I can get the wheels redone.

Before I came over to the US I reduced my collection somewhat, sold a Ducati 900SS Darmah and a Laverda 750SF2. You could get the impression I like Italian bikes.

DneprDave Reader
3/11/11 7:44 p.m.

I have a Dnepr MT-16. It's where my forum name comes from.

It is a Soviet Army motorcycle with a sidecar. The sidecar wheel is driven through a differential in the final drive. It looks alot like a R60/2 BMW, with an Earls fork front end.

It was designed to carry two soldiers and 600lbs of gear.


blackrabbit New Reader
3/11/11 10:37 p.m.

like my quest for eastbloc cars so too runs my taste for bikes.. I also have a Dnepr, two actually an MT16 and an MT9 as well as a few JAWA's including a speedway machine! 500cc's on wood alcohol w/no brakes.. Pudge in the Dnepr by blackrabbitracing, on Flickr

aeronca65t Dork
3/12/11 6:00 a.m.

That is a great photo of the dog in the sidecar!

And I am now using Google to learn about Dneprs. For what it's worth, I own a Honda 500 Ascot thumper.

Here's my favourite dog/sidecar shot (I took it at the NH Vintage a few years ago)

Leo  Basile
Leo Basile Reader
3/12/11 7:40 a.m.

Soon to be...I have an '08 Buell Lightning 12s, as does my wife. The pic is of my wife and her Lightning...

Im not really a bike guy, but Erik Buell is facinating. He reminds me a bit of Carrol Shelby, thats what got me into the dealership to look at them in the first place.



LaurentGT6 New Reader
3/12/11 10:33 p.m.

In reply to Leo Basile:

I restored 2 BMW about 10 years ago. BMW R75/5 72 and BMW R90S 75

Laurent Triumph GT6+

Series6 Reader
3/13/11 1:25 a.m.

I had a 1954 BMW R68 with a 1951 Steib S500R sidecarfor 30 years. Sold it to a well known BMW collector who is giving it a museum quality restoration. Prior to that I had a 1968 R69S, 1977 R100S, R75/5 SWB (which used to be Butler & Smith's second production racer for 2 years) and my first was a 1969 R60US.

Yup. I like vintage bikes.

BoxheadTim SuperDork
3/13/11 9:18 a.m.

In reply to LaurentGT6:

Ah, my favourite colour R90S (I don't like the smoke orange ones). Looks rather nice.

Andy Reid
Andy Reid Auction Editor
3/13/11 7:46 p.m.

This is where my total madness shines through:

1973 Norton Commando 750

1974 Norton Commando 850

1977 Triumph Bonneville 750 Silver Jubilee

1974 BMW R90S

1971 BSA 650 Thunderbolt

1968 BSA Shooting Star

1973 Triumph Daytona 500

1972 BMW R60/5

1941 BSA M20

1935 Brough Superior SS80(still in many pieces)

1985 Ducati 750 F1

2001 Ducati Monster S4

1973 Triumph Bonneville 750

1967 BSA 441 Victor

1978 Moto Guzzi T3

1981 Moto Guzzi V50

1986 Harley Davidson 883 Sportster

1959 Vespa GS 150

I think that is it. All but the Brough run and are either restored or are in nice unrestored condition.

I love bikes because they are so much more inexpensive than cars are and they take up less space. They are also much easier to restore and service.

oldtin Dork
3/13/11 9:06 p.m.

Recently I've been jonesing for an old honda cb in cafe form. Had a 1973 cb 350 in college. Fun bike. For now I've got a 2002 Triumph Daytona and a little Kawasaki ex 250.

Series6 Reader
3/15/11 7:05 p.m.


If you still have your R60/5 and it's a short wheelbase, I still have Reg Pridmore's seat off his SWB R75/5 Production race bike circa 1972-74. If it's a long wb bike you could use the seat pan and switch over the seat cover and rear section.

Give it that vintage racer look.

Series6 Reader
3/15/11 7:08 p.m.
BoxheadTim wrote: In reply to LaurentGT6: Ah, my favourite colour R90S (I don't like the smoke orange ones). Looks rather nice.

FYI-the color pictured was called Silversmoke and the orange was called Daytona Orange.

Ian F
Ian F SuperDork
3/16/11 8:16 a.m.

I can understand the appeal of vintage bikes - mainly for the reasons Andy mentioned.

Having no real history with motorcycles, I have no leanings towards any particular brand. Right now, the only one the interests me is the early 70's Kawasaki H1 that's been languishing in a (now my mother's) garage for nearly 40 years. It belongs to her husband and has about 4K miles on it. It needs a full tear-down and cleaning and new rubber bits, but it's otherwise complete and in good condition.

Of course, in order to ride it, I would need to spend some time on something smaller... since I'vebeen told a 500cc 2-stroke is not exactly a beginner's bike.

BoxheadTim SuperDork
3/16/11 12:45 p.m.

Especially those - they're not called widow makers for no reason.

Andy Reid
Andy Reid Auction Editor
3/16/11 2:47 p.m.

In reply to Series6:

It is a SWB bike yes. I like them more. I would love the seat.

Bainford New Reader
3/17/11 1:23 p.m.

I have a 76 Kawasaki KH 400 with a 77 engine , a 2 stroke tripple. Been wanting one of these ever since high school when I'd listen to a friend leave the school yard each day, the sound of that bike splitting the air as he fed it gears. It sounded so mean. I bought mine in a basket a few years ago, and there it sits. Been thinking about it a lot over the last year or so, and getting anxious to get it back together. Should make for an enjoyable restoration project.

Series6 Reader
3/17/11 2:04 p.m.


Check your inbox. Just sent pictures.


Ian F
Ian F SuperDork
3/17/11 2:16 p.m.
BoxheadTim wrote: Especially those - they're not called widow makers for no reason.

Yeah... from what I've read, they'll go like a bat-outta-hell in a straight line... but if you try to stop or turn, it completes the journey.

VClassics Reader
3/17/11 3:13 p.m.

The H1 didn't particularly want to go in a straight line, either. It was notorious for wobbling at speed. Sure had some serious power-to-weight ratio for its day, though...

BoxheadTim SuperDork
3/17/11 4:01 p.m.

I think the best description I've heard was that the frame was made out of overcooked spaghetti...

WilD HalfDork
3/19/11 9:48 a.m.

This is a timely topic since I have finally decided to take the MSF course and really jump into the bike world. I've been putting it off for years. No classic bikes yet, but I suspect it's just a matter of time. Older bikes just look so right.

BoxheadTim SuperDork
3/19/11 10:29 p.m.

Older bikes are also often a lot easier to work on.

914Driver SuperDork
3/21/11 4:16 p.m.

I like Chopsicles, but not a fan of spool front ends and drum rears. If I had to narrow the field? BMW Cafe'

Everybody is somebody's weirdo......

Ian F
Ian F SuperDork
3/23/11 8:46 a.m.

I'll admit that the Cafe' Racer series on HD Theater has sparked my interest... although I had a leaning towards those kind of bikes before that.

Unfortunately, most of my friends and family have a dead-set hatred of motorcycles... The mere mention of H-D will make the other half's blood boil...

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