Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Fettling 500s

From Fettling 500s
From Fettling 500s
From Fettling 500s
From Fettling 500s

It is always very exciting seeing a bike finally on the road after a restoration, whether it be your own or someone elses. In the last couple of weeks a couple of the troops have done just that and after the initial first start up comes the fettling process. Don turned up for a ride with his very dazzling Suzuki GT500 that has just been through a whole restoration process from motor to running gear to tins. The fact that he and Sir Al were due to leave for Nelson and the Nelson Classic Motorcycle Club Rally in Collingwood gave the fettling some urgency. Oil feed issues seemed to be the most urgent as we looked for oil making its way down the opaque oil lines at our first stop at Raumai. After some discussion and application of tools we carried on to our next stop at the Ballance Bridge Cafe. The food and beverages were up to the usual standard and after much verbal fettling of Dons bike we then made our way back to Palmy over the Pahiatua track.
It was a great little ride in brilliant weather. It was great to have Alan De Lautour along for the ride on his Suzuki RG500. It certainly has a sound all of its own and nice to see Alan using it on the road. Alan has just about completed a full restoration of his Kawasaki H1500 and the photo above shows what a wonderful job hes done on it. He is still waiting for an exhaust to finish of the job.
Pleased to report that Dons GT500 made it down and back to Collingwood, but as can be expected with old bikes, still some issues to resolve!
Roll call
Kim De Lautour - Yamaha RZ250
Don Mardle - Suzuki GT500
Alan De Lautour- Suzuki RG500
Alan Clark - Kawasaki A7350
Gary Whiting - Kawasaki KH250

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

2011 VJMC National Rally

From 2011 VJMC Rally Whanganui
Quick stop at Turakina.

From 2011 VJMC Rally Whanganui
Kims mount for the weekend was the mighty Suzuki RE5Wankel

From 2011 VJMC Rally Whanganui
Damn rain!

From 2011 VJMC Rally Whanganui
Your truely on the T500. Thanks to David Glenday for the photo

From 2011 VJMC Rally Whanganui
The George and Mildred mobile.

From 2011 VJMC Rally Whanganui
Wet on the inside and wet on the outside.

From 2011 VJMC Rally Whanganui
A happy Barry.

From 2011 VJMC Rally Whanganui
Waiting for the steam boat.

From 2011 VJMC Rally Whanganui
These lads love their Heavy Metal!

From 2011 VJMC Rally Whanganui
See you next year!



After leaving from palmy at 5:30 on the Friday the Manawatu chapter of the VJMC made its way to Whanganui the long way. This was through the back of Halcombe and Marton and finally into town via Fordell. We were greeted by a garage full of bikes and the Barbie on full. We quickly found our accommodation and the bar and caught up with others from around the country. The next morning we awoke to the sound of rain on the roof and questions being asked about the the ride out up to the Tawhiti Museum in Hawera. After looking at the rain radar and the forecast everyone decided to stay put and if the rain stopped go for a smaller run closer to Whanganui. Luckily some interesting bike videos appeared out of the woodwork and the morning was spent watching them. After lunch the the weather started changing and so by 2:30 a brief ride was organised around the town. This included a a couple of circuits around the the famous Cemetery circuit. Arriving back at HQ we all gathered for the prize giving which some enjoyed from the comfort of the sauna. As with previous rallies everyone got a prize with a lot of fun alround as people responded to there good fortune with some interesting banter.
Next on the timetable was the BBQ dinner on board the Waimarie, a very old restored paddle steamer. She used to do runs up the Whanganui river when it was the main means of transport before rail and road became widespread. After boarding we had a very pleasant run up the river and ate our BBQ to the chuffing sound of the steam engine. With no wind and at last no rain it was a real highlight of the weekend and highly recommended if you are traveling to Whanganui. As the light faded we came back into port and those of a more partying nature headed off into town whilst the rest of us headed back to the Anndion to continue conversations around the bikes in the garage. The following morning greeted us with more promises of rain so we dragged out the wet weather gear yet again. Luckily we didn't have to travel to far back to Palmy and the only incident was Dions KH400 running out of sparks. A battery swap with Don had us back on the road again and back home in time for morning tea.
It was a great weekend. Judy, Ross, Angela had out done themselves and found us a venue that was very bike friendly and the Saturday night dinner on the river added to a memorable weekend.
Thanks heaps
Roll on next years rally!

Prizes were awarded to
Best 80s - Don Mardle Yamaha RZ350
Best 70s - Dion Tornquist Kawasaki KH400
Best 60s - Murray Smith Suzuki TC250
Best Yamaha - Barry Cooper Yamaha TDR250
Best Suzuki - Alan Clark Suzuki TS250
Best Honda - Ray Bokkerink Honda CB750
Best Kawasaki - Ross Charlton Kawasaki S2350
1st Rally entry - Barry Drummond
Peoples Choice - Bruce Currie Suzuki GT750

Friday, March 18, 2011

Valley and Track run

From PacificMCC@Manfield run
From PacificMCC@Manfield run
From PacificMCC@Manfield run
From PacificMCC@Manfield run

Here are some photos and video from another January run some of the VJMC/Blue Haze Manawatu crew went on. Hard to beat a morning run up the Pohangina Valley just as the day is beginning to warm up. Great to see Paul Whitings daughter Teia along for the ride to see what Dad gets up to when he disappears some Sunday mornings on his bike and comes back smiling. The run up to the Pilgrims Rest found it closed, so back down the valley to the Waterford for a coffee and tea. After a chat we were back on the bikes and heading to Feilding and Manfeild to see how Tim was doing on his Honda CBR600. This was his second outing on it and it was great to see the Hawkes Bay based Pacific Motorcycle Club giving a lot of club riders from the lower half of the North Island the opportunity to get out on the track. It was neat to see Tim and four generations of his family having a day out at the track. Nothing like a Manfeild hotdog and chips while you watch Dad tear around a race track! Great for morning talks at school on Monday morning. Our bikes generated some interest with some talk of organising rallys and/or shows around these sort of race meetings. Not a bad idea.
It was a great way to spend a summers day and add another golden weather memory to the memory bank.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Out for a run with the Manawatu Classic Motorcycle Club

From Classic Bike Club to Ruapuna
From Classic Bike Club to Ruapuna
From Classic Bike Club to Ruapuna
From Classic Bike Club to Ruapuna
From Classic Bike Club to Ruapuna

Three of us from the VJMC/Blue Haze Manawatu and four from VJMC Hawkes Bay decided to take up the invitation from Manawatu Classic Motorcycle Club to go on a run with them up to a the Ruapuna Park and Museum at Rangiwahia. Don and Alan and myself arrived at the Linton St departure point as the rumble from a mixture of British twins and singles were kicked into life ready for the ride north. After some discussion we decided to head north via Feilding rather than Colyton so we could top up with petrol as the return journey via Apiti would definitely push the range of Sir Als A7. I wasn't to sure how the mighty T500 was going to fare as she was back to smoking on one cylinder tricks again, but after a couple of minutes on the open road she seemed to clear so i carried on. I think the center seals may have gone. That's what happens when you leave a two stroke sitting around for years!
After the a brief stop North End BP we headed up towards Kimblton looking for the others. After a few stops whilst Don got his Helmet Cam running we caught up with the crew just north of Kimbolton. The heat was starting to melt the tar so some caution was needed but it was good to back on this wonderful motorcycling road yet again. Just before Rangiwahia a couple of familiar faces appeared on the side of the road as we caught up with the Hawkes Bay crew. we then rode a few more kms to Ruapuna. It was getting really hot by this stage so people pulled out there lunches and munched away as the owner of the collection gave us the rundown on how it all happened. The cottage was just as it would have been in the 1930s and is a great reminder of how dramatically our living conditions have changed. The 1000 year old totara tree is a must see as it years humble you when you realise how short a time we have been on this land. Our return journey through Apiti was punctuated by a cool drink at The Waterford and making sure Sir Al made to Ashhurst after going on to reserve. A great day out with some like minded company and one that i am sure will be especially remembered during the depths of winter.
http://www.irongates.co.nz/Iron_Gates/Ruapuna_Park.html

Thursday, March 10, 2011

VJMC Blue Hazes first run for 2011

From 10,000 mile Kawasaki H2
From 10,000 mile Kawasaki H2
From 10,000 mile Kawasaki H2
From 10,000 mile Kawasaki H2
From 10,000 mile Kawasaki H2
From 10,000 mile Kawasaki H2


Weather wise, January 2011 was very kind to motorcyclists in the Manawatu. And so it was for our first monthly run of 2011. The run was to finish with a sausage and bread BBQ at Paul and Janices. After meeting at Manawatu Motorcycles, Hunterville was decided on as a suitable culinary destination that could top up the cholesterol count. The roll call for the ride was
Paul De Lautour - Kawasaki H1a,
Bruce Andrews - Yamaha YPVS RD350,
Alan Clark - Kawasaki H2,
Kim De Lautour - Yamaha RZ250,
Don Mardle - Yamaha RZ350,
Geoff Noyes - Kawasaki KR150,
Paul Whiting - Kawasaki GPz750
Dion Tornquist - Kawasaki KH400
Gary Whiting - Suzuki T500
First stop was Cheltenham hill after going through Colyton and the outskirts of Feilding and then on to Stormy Point along the Vinegar Hill road and finally to Hunterville. We enjoyed the food and drink along with the banter from the waitress at the cafe. A great place to stop. Great to see Sir Als odometer just tick over the 10000 miles. With such an immaculate and valuable bike it would be very easy to be precious with it and hide it away in the garage. Not Alan, hes out there using very regularly each month. Ride it dont hide it!
For our return journey we decided on the long way home so we could avoid most of State Highway One. Rangatira Road was new for us, but turned out to be a great road with a nice mix of tight and open corners through some great countryside. A short scoot down state highway one to Porewa Road then had us not to far from the turnoff at Kakariki. Through to Halcombe and then on to Mt Stewart and then to Pauls place. The bread and sausages turned out to be an absolutely lovely 5+ a day meal. Thanks Paul and Janice.
A great start to the year and lets hope every last Sunday of the month is a fine one!

PS. Our thoughts and feelings go out to everyone in Christchurch after the latest earthquake. I will never forget our visit down to the CCJMG show in Christchurch last year and how the crew pulled it together so soon after the first quake. I am sure that the spirit displayed then will stand you in good stead for the challenges that lye ahead.
Kia kaha