Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Winter Solstice Ride













Matariki is a time of year in the Maori calendar that one looks back on the year that has been and looks forward to a new year. We had a good turnout on Sunday for our end of month ride with 11 bikes and riders lining up outside Manawatu Motorcycles. The sunny weather  probably encouraged a few to wheel out the bikes from the garage and they were rewarded with a great morning+ out in our wonderful motorcycle friendly countryside. This bodes well for the new year with a healthy number of fellow enthusiasts wanting to share and enjoy these older bikes. We decided on an easterly direction for our run with the Rongomai loop chosen as our route. We certainly good a good taste of the rural lifestyle not only following a herd of cows for many kays, but also being confronted by a rather grumpy bull who must have escaped his paddock to get in amongst the 'ladies'. He seemed to take a particular dislike to Dion. Not sure why. Maybe he didn't like Yamaha TZRs, or maybe it was Dions new leathers? they might have been a relative? Our stop in Pahiatua was sprinkled with stories of daring and bravery about all the slippery cow 'poo' and facing down a bull in the middle of the road. I wonder what sort of title we could give such a story? Our next stop for a cuppa was greeted with a full house at the Bridge Cafe, so headed through the gorge to the Ashhurst Inn for a very late morning tea which we later called lunch! (Recommended)

Friday, June 27, 2014

Bridge Cafe Run









I haven't been out and about much for a while so when some of the lads suggested a quick Track and Saddle run I was in. Luckily it was a great weather if a little chilly, perfect weather for an air cooled two stroke! Pity all my ones are off the road requiring some major attention. Luckily Dion turned up for the run on his TZR to up hold the Blue Haze logo on our t shirts with the only two stroke. Word has it that a number of two strokes will be returning to the road shortly after some maintenance and rebuilding. Looking forward to those special atmospheric conditions that seem to happen when leaving the city limits on the 2Tees! Michael and Ian showed up with a couple of new purchases. Michaels Aprilia is an earlier carburettored version of Alans 650 Pegaso and the two of them swapped bikes on the run. Consensus was that the carb version ran better versus the snatchy nature of Alans EFI version. It was great to see Ian turn up on his latest purchase, a Suzuki GS450S. I had one for a few years and really enjoyed it and they are surprisingly quick. Ian proved this by having no trouble keeping up with alan and Dion over the Saddle road. Prior to this we had a great chat over coffee and scones at the Bridge Cafe sitting in some warm winter sun.
Roll on the next fine winter Sunday!

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Celebrating Mrs Windsors Birthday 2014


















A big thank you to Sir Al for writing this report on what looks and sounds like a wonderful day out in this great motorcycling country of ours.

Never let a chance go by. So the 3-day weekend to celebrate HMs birthday was a good opportunity to arrange a full day ride on the Sunday. And as luck would have it the weather was perfect all day.
Paul, Dion, Ian, Bruce A, and myself met at Manawatu Motorcycles at 9.30 and made our out to Sanson to meet up with Bruce S, Bruce C from Wellington, Dave, and Alan and Di from Levin.
Then over to Wanganui to collect Wayne on his Yamaha RZ500. This made for an interesting collection of bikes; 71 Kawasaki A7, 72 Suzuki GT750, 74 Suzuki GT750, Honda NS400R, Suzuki GSX600, Moto Guzzi Le Mans, Yamaha TZR250, BMW adventure bike, and a very large Honda cruiser!
From Wanganui we headed up the River Road past Jerusalem and through to Pipiriki. This road is now tar-sealed which looks to have been quite an achievement in places. Some corners won’t see any sun through the winter and there was signs of frost on roadside grass. The locals don’t waste any time traversing this piece of road so it doesn’t pay to be looking around too much.
The ride up from Pipiriki to Raetihi is excellent, a twisting climbing road with quite a few damp corners. We stopped at the Angel Louise Café in Raetihi for lunch about 1.30, and sat outside in the sunshine with jackets off. Good food and good coffee. Great company.
All too soon it was time to get back on the road, and after a fill up for the thirsty 2-strokes, it was off down the Parapara road. This is really a great bit of road starting out with faster corners and getting tighter further down the hill. I followed Paul and Dave all the way and really enjoyed the ride on the A7.
By the time we reached Wanganui it was getting quite cool. We fuelled up the bikes again (a couple of us at least), and headed for home. The dusk was just setting in at Sanson were Bruce C turned south, and we carried on to Palmerston North arriving home in the dark.

The only problem all day was a fuse on the Paul’s Gt that came apart. I hadn’t ridden the A7 for many months due to the amount of smoke being generated (apologies to those that followed in its wake. At least your bikes won’t rust), and was very pleasantly surprised at how well it goes given its 338cc. Comfortable too. New crank seals about to be fitted.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Bazza's Shed Raid

Sir Al has just sent in this great write up from the weekend. Four of the troops headed south to experience one mans passion for the old Jappas. When Barry isn't trying to keep the propellers attached to Kiwi Rail Ferries he is more than likely tinkering around in his shed. When your nearest and dearest question the number of bikes in your collection, send this link to them. Thanks for setting the standard Barry!














One man’s ceiling is another man’s floor
Certainly the case when it comes to collecting old bikes.
Mother’s Day; Kim, Dion, Ian, and myself headed to the capital to visit Barry D and collect a NOS exhaust end for my Kawasaki A7. A perfect day for a ride joining the masses heading up and down SH1. After a coffee stop at Riverstone café in Otaki, we arrived at Bazza’s about 1.30pm.
Ian rode his GSX600, myself on the Aprilia (taking some stick over my choice), and Kim and Dion on Yamaha TZRs, a 3XV and 1KT respectively. The arrival of the TZRs inspired Barry to wheel out his TZR 3MA. Then the RZ 350 and RZ 250. Then the YDS1 (with interesting race pedigree) and YDS2 and YDS6. And then the DT1 and RT3. And that’s just the Yamahas! There were Kawasaki, Honda, and Suzuki. Several of each. We lined the Yamahas up for a photo session in the afternoon sun. Had a good poke around the garage and a small shed that could well be the original Tardus, judging by the selection of bikes and tyres, bars, and parts that came out of it. Clearly none of us are using the space we have at home to best effect. Every nook and cranny at Barry’s had something interesting stored away. Barry’s talent for collecting is surpassed only by the inimitable Paul W!

We headed back about 4pm and filtered through the endless stream of 4-wheeled flotsam & jetsam that clogs SH1 north of the capital on weekends. All went well until the 3XV lost forward momentum just out of Tokomaru. 6 neutrals. So it was a dub home on the Aprilia to get the van. There’s always something to work on during the week when you have old bikes.


Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Four Seasons in One Day








Sunday April 20th dawned overcast in the Manawatu and a group of 7 optimistic riders headed north to Taihape via Kimbolton and Rangiwahia. The roads were wet and we were getting peppered with occasional showers. The plan was to ride over to Hawkes Bay via the Gentle Annie road. After a stop at Taihape for petrol and a hot coffee, we headed off toward Moawhanga and up onto the Central Plateau. As we climbed the sky cleared and the road dried and a we enjoyed a great ride over one of the best motorcycling roads in our region. After the descent to the Kaweka forest (the part of the road originally known as The Gentle Annie) the temperature started to rise and a stop at Omahu was required to remove extra clothing layers. From there a short run into Hastings for petrol and then (eventually, after a short tour of Flaxmere) onto SH50 and down to Tikokino for lunch at the Tikokino Country Hotel. The food was good and the service quick, and we sat outside enjoying the warmth of a Southern Hawkes Bay autumn day. After lunch it was down to Dannivirke, where those of us with wet weather gear should have put it back on! As we headed toward Woodville it became obvious we weren't going to get home dry. The temperature dropped, the wind howled and then about 15km out the hail hit. Then it poured down. By Woodville it was too late to get the rain gear out and we headed into the Manawatu Gorge in very poor visibility. Surprisingly, we emerged from the George into patches of blue, and made it home on dry roads about 4.30.
Between us we had a mixture of bikes from the 70s, 80's, 90s, and modern era. All the bikes went well.
This is definitely a ride we should be organising more often. Well worth making the effort.
Riders & bikes; Ian GSX600F, Paul Moto Guzzi Le Mans, PC Honda Bros, Kim & myself on Kawasaki H2s, Evan KTM Duke 690, and Bruce BMW GS650.

Report from Sir Al