From the dusty hills and rolling valleys of California comes a motorcycle that, to be honest, would have flown completely over my head (pun intended), had I not checked the morning’s lists. WebBikeWorld, meet THE SPEEDER – the world’s flying motorcycle, the brainchild of JetPack Aviation, and all-around contender for man’s new best friend. Check …

Triumph has just announced they’re working on a series of off-road competition motorcycles – and who better to contribute than off-road championship giants Ricky Carmichael and Ivan Cervantes? The all-new competition-level MX and Enduro bikes are currently under development and will purportedly ‘bring all of Triumph’s engineering expertise to riders and racers worldwide.’ Question is, …

THE FIRST RIDE OF THE SEASON The Rio Vista Delta Ride 2011, on Saturday, March 5, 2011, was just the latest installment of this popular ride through the scenic & historic Sacramento River Delta country, northeast of the Bay Area. NEW MEMBER WELCOME I just recently joined the BSAOCNC (BSA Owners Club-Northern California), and volunteered …

RICKMAN MOTORCYCLES – THE RICKMAN BROTHERS Don & Derek Rickman raced scrambles and motocross throughout England in the 1950s and were quite good, and had achieved great renown. By the late 50s however, they were growing increasingly disgusted with the motorcycle offerings of the major British manufacturers. Most were essentially street bikes that had been …

Rickman 250 Restoration Project: RICKMAN 250 RESTORATION PROJECT – GERM OF AN IDEA This one is a little different for me. I am a regular attendee of MidAmerica Auctions HUGE Classic Motorcycle Auction in Las Vegas every January. Whether I’m buying or selling, there are over 500 incredible classic bikes there for sale, and it’s …

The Return of the Yellow Bike: THE RETURN OF THE YELLOW BIKE First off, what is the Yellow Bike? It’s my personal favorite motorcycle that I’ve ever owned, and I’ve owned several. It started out life as a ’73 Triumph TR7 that I built from scratch, nearly down to the last nut-and-bolt. It’s the bike …

CLASSIC BRITISH RAT BIKES – BORN OF CHOPPERS When I was growing up and learning to ride, around 1970, people were chopping all kinds of things, not just Harleys. Lots of guys were chopping their Honda 350s, 450s & 750s. I even saw a Kawasaki Mach3 chopper once, with extended forks & no additional rake. …

IT’S A RIDE, IT’S A SHOW…IT’S A SHOW & A RIDE! The Quail Ride is part of the Quail Motorcycle Gathering held at the Quail Lodge in Carmel Valley CA on Saturday, May 14th, 2011. The Quail Ride was on the day before. Okay, first off it was Friday the 13th. And it was my …

THE QUAIL MOTORCYCLE GATHERING: A RIDE, A SHOW & AN AUCTION ALL ROLLED INTO ONE I attended this year’s Third Annual Quail Motorcycle Gathering at the beautiful Quail Lodge in Carmel Valley CA, and what an experience! To begin with, these ‘Gatherings’ are far more than just an awesome Classic Motorcycle Show, they’ve evolved very …

BACKGROUND OF NORTON ROTARY MOTORCYCLES Norton’s air-cooled, twin-rotor Wankel motorcycles made up a unique and interesting chapter in the history of this legendary classic British marque. After the last Commando rolled off the assembly line in 1975, things grew quiet at Norton until the early 1980s. Norton and merged with BSA in 1973 just as …

1959 Velocette Venom 1959 VELOCETTE VENOM BACKGROUND The Venom was Velocette’s hottest bike from its inception in 1955. In 1961 a factory-prepared Venom with a small fairing set the world’s 24-hour endurance speed record of 100.05 MPH at the Montlhery race track in France. The record stood until 2008 for 500cc motorcycles. The 499cc Venom …

1973 Triumph Trident 1973 Triumph Trident T150V THE 1973 TRIUMPH TRIDENT IS A TURNING POINT 1973 was a very important year for Triumph, and in particular for its star player, the Bonneville. Because that year, the legendary 650 “Bonnie” got punched out to a 750, got a much-need and long-overdue 5-speed gearbox, and a front …

The Mother Lode Ride THE MOTHER LODE RIDE: ANOTHER GREAT BSAOC RIDE The boys & girls of the BSAOC-NorCal have been busy planning a full calendar of rides for the year. I’m now on the Ride Committee & so will help with the planning for next year, and based on what I’m seeing this year, …

Morning After Ride 2012 ABOVE: We meet behind Hobbe’s. THE MORNING AFTER RIDE 2012 RIDE ‘EM, DON’T HIDE ‘EM! As a follow-on to the Clubmans Show on Saturday, March 31, 2012, the BSA Owners Club of Northern California (BSAOCNC) sponsors the Morning After Ride. It’s their invitation to the show entrants to take their lovely …

1988 Norton Classic Rotary 1988 NORTON CLASSIC ROTARY BACKGROUND Norton’s air-cooled, twin-rotor Wankel motorcycle was a one-year-only run, with just 100 of them built in 1987 as 1987 and 1988 models. This makes it one of the world’s rarest production Nortons, and one of the rarest classic British motorcycles overall. It came at a time …

BSA-MAHINDRA UPDATE, December 9, 2020 When Indian tractor giant Mahindra & Mahindra (M&M) bought the old BSA brand for $5.4 Million USD in October 2016, they had big, ambitious plans to launch the revived brand as an upscale retro bike for the US and European markets. Now, 4 years later, we’re still waiting. What happened? …

Old School BSA Choppers BSA CHOPPERS WERE HIP Back in the very-late-1970s and very-early-1970s, crazy guys (usually without a whole lot of money to work with) were chopping everything with two wheels. I had a couple of buddies who chopped their 350 Hondas, and Honda 750 choppers weren’t uncommon. For the guys who couldn’t afford …

ABOVE: The Brooks Cycles Auction was conducted by Auctioneer Doug Neale, who is also the patriarch of Neale & Sons Auction Company. BROOKS CYCLERY – A LOCAL LEGEND Brooks Cycle Shop was THE Motorcycle Shop in San Jose CA in the 1950s & 1960s. They carried at various times, Triumph, BSA, Hodaka, Suzuki, Lambretta & …

MECUM AUCTIONS MONTEREY 2011 – 200 CLASSIC MOTORCYCLES ON THE BLOCK Mecum Auctions put on one heckuva show, this past Thur-Sat, August 18-20 in Monterey CA at the gorgeous Hyatt Regency Hotel & Spa. On the lush, sprawling grounds of the Del Monte Golf Course, over 600 classic cars & trucks lined up to be …

taken september 1937 Dear sir, can you please identify the model of this bike for me. I am trying to compile my family history and this picture (not very good i’m afraid) is of my dad on his matchless bike taken in 1937 – the date on the back of the pic. I would be …

The Lotus C-01 Motorcycle THE LOTUS C-01 MOTORCYCLE: LOTUS BUILDS MOTORCYCLES? Have you ever seen a Lotus motorcycle before? I hadnʼt. Until I saw this one at the big Mecum classic motorcycle auction in Las Vegas in January. The looks of the Lotus C-01 are jaw-dropping, other-worldly, like nothing Iʼd ever seen before. Sitting there …

The Clubmans Show 2011 DON’T MISS THIS SHOW!! The Clubmans Show 2011 promises, as do all Clubmans Shows, to be a Must-See event for anyone with a love of Classic British Motorcycles. This is the 24th year of this amazing event. Sponsored by the Northern California Chapter of the BSA Owners Club, or BSAOC, the …

CLUBMANS ALL-BRITISH WEEKEND 2017 MAKES 30 YEARS Every year for the last 30 years, the BSA Owners Club of Northern California (BSAOCNC) has put on an all-British motorcycle show and ride that has been billed as the biggest in the West. This year’s Clubman’s All-British Weekend-2017, the 30th Annual, was on Saturday, March 25 this …

We not only covered the Clubmans All-British Weekend 2012, we set up a photo booth to take studio-grade pics of gorgeous classic British motoryclces. For more coverage of the show, and lots more eye-popping photos, go to our Clubmans Show 2012 Pictures page.   CLUBMANS All-BRITISH WEEKEND 2012 – The 25th Annual CLUBMAN’S SHOW If …

My Classic Motorcycle Restoration Project: My next cheap Classic Motorcycle Restoration Project: This sweet 1979 Triumph T140D Bonneville Special, pictured here in our state-of-the-art Research & Development Center (my garage). CLASSIC MOTORCYCLE RESTORATION PROJECT: THESE BIKES ARE CHEAP! Obviously, ‘cheap’ is a relative thing. But, when you think of what it costs to get into …

CLASSIC MOTORCYCLE RESTORATION – THE HEART OF OUR HOBBY In many ways, our love of Classic British Motorcycles (or classic motorcycles of any kind for that matter) is reliant upon restorers who bring these fantastic machines back to life. As the popularity of classic motorcycles spreads, more & more ‘barn finds’ will be restored. Still …

Central Coast Motorcycle Show 2011 CENTRAL COAST MOTORCYCLE SHOW 2011 IS A HIT! This is the 4th year for the Central Coast Classic Motorcycle Show in San Luis Obispo CA. It’s put on by the Central Coast Classic Motorcycle Club & they did one heck of a job! It takes place in the large parking …

OVERVIEW Ariel Motorcycles have acquired an image & a level of respect that is perhaps greater than the volume of motorcycles it sold would dictate. The legendary Ariel Square Four, designed by Edward Turner (who would go on to create the seminal 1937 Triumph Speed Twin), has gone a long way to establish the marque …

BSA MOTORCYCLES RULE THE WORLD! From the mid-1930’s through the early 1960’s, BSA was the world’s largest producer of motorcycles. But their motorcycle division was just one small corner of the gigantic BSA financial empire at that time. In fact, BSA was one of the largest companies in the world for many years. At the …

CROWDED MARKET The Norton Dominator was Norton’s entry into the crowded vertical twin market, & it was intended to capitalize on the success of, & hopefully steal some sales from, the trend-setting Triumph Speed Twin. When it was introduced in 1949, the 500cc Dominator Model 7 was a handsome enough machine. The new engine was …

BSA A65: THE MOVE TO UNIT CONSTRUCTION The BSA A65-A50 twins, the A65 being a 650 twin & it’s smaller sister-bike the BSA A10 500 twin, were the natural result of the trend, then sweeping the British motorcycle industry, to unitize engine construction. Prior, most engine packages were made up of separate crankcase, primary case …

TANGLED ROOTS The BSA Rocket 3 is something of an anomaly in the history of BSA Motorcycles. Designed by Triumph, (BSA owned Triumph) in their Meriden Plant as the Triumph T150 Trident 750 triple, , and morphed into the BSA A65 Rocket 3, both were produced in BSA’s Small Heath factory. ABOVE: The 1969 BSA …

Corndogs, live music, tattoo contests…what’s not to love about a motorcycle rally? Given that restrictions are finally loosening up, it’s a relief to announce the revival of a couple of well-loved favorites to Muskegon, Michigan – just in time for the heat. Buckle up and bring some water bottles – according to a report from …

ABOVE: 1982 Triumph Bonneville T140E Electro, with electric start. This one has the optional 7-spoke cast aluminum “mag wheels”. MODEL DESIGNATIONS As the skies continued to darken at Triumph, the resourceful fellows at Meriden Co-op needed to come up with ever new ways to dress up the same old antiquated design. They had hit on …

1989 Norton F1 Rotary 1989 NORTON F1 ROTARY BACKGROUND Norton’s liquid-cooled, twin-rotor Wankel motorcycle, the F1, was produced from 1989-1991, and was produced in very low numbers, typical of Norton’s rotary motorcycle business of the day . It was the ultimate development of Norton’s rotary engine program, following several generations of air-cooled twin-rotor Wankel-powered bikes, …

WHATEVER HAPPENED TO YELLOW BIKE? After a 7-year absence, I tracked down my favorite old bike and bought it back. After hand-building it, riding it all over the state, winning shows with it, it was even written up in a bike magazine.  Then, for some unknown reason, I sold it in 2009.  It took until …

TRIUMPH TRIDENT: AHEAD OF THE CURVE? The story of the Triumph Trident and her sister-bike, the BSA Rocket 3, is one of the most interesting, and at the same time most exasperating, tales in all the annals of Classic British Motorcycles. Interesting because the Triumph Trident might actually have been one of the few instances …

Got the itch to put some miles in? Fear not – there’s still a couple of things to do in the country before pockets are emptied into gas tanks, and parking receipts are exchanged for plane tickets.  The Peterson Automotive Museum in Los Angeles has a treat that they have installed for July 3rd – …

Getting to Grips with the Sena 10C Evo As so many of us gear up for a new riding season, with related planning that goes with it, there is obviously a new or renewed appreciation for the ability to just get out and ride, whether alone or together, locally, or farther afield. We all have …

With energy efficiency on the rise, it was only a matter of time before an American somebody decided to marry off-roading elements with clean energy in pursuit of the ultimate motorcycle mountain goat – and Volcon Powersports has done just that with the release of their electric motorcycle lineup.    Purported on their website as …