another perfectly good motorcycle ruined.......

Saturday, 31 July 2010


trophy on e-bay, saturday night bike-porn.

#30, dangerous dave crofts, 248 ducati, sticking it up 'em since 1964.

dangerous dropped another race programe off today, he's in it, there's a bloke called john cooper from derby in it, racing at the same meeting, you might have heard of him, he beat some italian bloke called agostini at mallory in what a lot of people reckoned was one of the best races ever

the lads look on in disbelief as i fuck up my bid on e-bay for a spare 250 mz engine, i'm a luddite when it comes to computers, i'm confident i'm going to score a 251 etz motor for £80 and i hold off my bid until 30 seconds before the end of the auction, i press my bid button laughing as i confirm......... only to discover i'm not logged in, twat.....

cadwell, two weeks, entry in to bemsee, i'm buzzing!

Thursday, 29 July 2010



sporties rule.

dragged the ducati out for a good thrashing today, down to racing lines to pick up my spark plugs, got my '10's, rob had sold my '9's this morning, up to john carrs for a new pair of gloves, rst's , carbon knuckle guards, vented, mint, up the a38 to mansfield to drop a piece of stainless off with kev at le-rock, his sporty/buell project, 'green meenie' was on the front leaning against the railings that seperate the railway line from the industrial units, got a bit of history with this bike, the number plate was off my old bmw project that i sold to barse, the engine, a buell fuel injection model was mine, i bought it off kev for a hillclimber project that i started and binned due to a lack of funds, [same as it ever was], i stripped the motor and started to re-build it then ran out of green-folding and kev bought it back off me, slapped it in a cut -down sporty frame, added supertrapp down pipes, no silencers, a subaru air filter, [on standard cv carb, 42mm hsr mikuni to follow] rattle-canned spoke wheels, [big, big back end to follow], loveless rearsets off dangerous's sporty and a batman stylee, joker, half black, half green spray job, fucking mint, de de de de, de de de de, frisky, de de de de, de de de de , frisky.....



























had some time off this week, booked a week off to sort a few jobs out and chill, been up early every day, out in the garden with a mug of tea and gus sitting on my knee, [can't get ted up, he isn't a 'morning' dog], visited a few antique shops, junk shops, charity shops and book shops, i took the kid's to meadow hall [meadow-hell] yesterday, it's a massive shopping mall on the outskirts of sheffield, imagine being blind folded and spun around three times and then the blind fold being taken off, i bet you couldn't guess which city you are in, every shop exactly the same, the clothes exactly the same, the layout, exactly the same, i sat outside the apple shop waiting for jack who was lusting after the new i-pad, i clocked the shop assistants, i'm well travelled and i swear they look exactly like the assistants in los angeles, or florida or nevada or wherever, i reckon they shrinkwrap them onto a pallett and deliver them to the shop, put the batteries in and away they go, thats why i like [delete as applicable, junk/charity/antique/secondhand bookshops/autojumbles/old vinyl record shops/builders skips], i love rooting through stuff where everything is different, iv'e bagged a couple of gems this week, the derby county book for £1.60, [featuring legends such as stimac, carbonari, bloomer, mcfarland, hector, mackay, gemmill, charlie george, franny lee, eranio,wanchope and raich carter], the classic motorcycles book by vic willoughby for £2, and the mike hailwood poster riding the honda six at the french gp in 1967 in a tatty frame for £4, i love old stuff me.

Tuesday, 27 July 2010


got tipped off that this photo of me was on a photography site, [can't tell you which one though!], the photo is copyright to them, even though it's a photo of me, how does that work then? anyway, enough of that, been hard at it in the shed making spares for the racer last couple of nights, made replacement footpeg hangers and tomorrow it's going to be two more pairs of footpegs, finally seem to have got the float hights sorted and the bike starts easily now, got a good range of jets from burwins and my spare spark plugs need picking up from rob at racing lines, we are trying to get a load of spares ready for when i crash so that we can sort the bike out at a meeting if needs be, going to get my entry in this week for cadwell next month, thats when the bullshit stops.....

here's a picture of me sitting on my mz trophy, barse is the bloke on the right with the jogger bottoms and hands on his hips, the little lad is ben the tattoo artist wearing his 'lederhosen', the bloke with the dodgy shades is dangerous and the man with the red shirt and his arms folded is an undercover policeman from the derbyshire constabulary questioning us about what gearing we should use for cadwell park, 'bollock's copper, we aint sayin' nuffin!'

my bike was on e-bay for a seven day listing, it was up tonight at 1950 hours, top bid was £1550, one thousand, five hundred and fifty pounds, bollocks to that, this bike is the cleanest, best maintained 750ss in the country, every nut and bolt is high grade stainless steel or titanium, it's got a carbon and stainless remus high level exhaust system, k+n air filter, modded air box and re-chip, new chain and sprockets, battery, the brake lines have been replaced with earls performance stainless and carbon lines, even the bleed nipples, banjo's and caliper bolts are stainless, it's got a ducati performance carbon front mudguard, shorty footpegs, single seat conversion, heel plates and front sprocket cover, full service history, brand new bridgestone bt 016 battlax tyres, the aluminium is polished and the paintwork is flawless, you had your chance suckers, this bike ain't for sale now, fuck you.








Sunday, 25 July 2010


sunday, barse, gordy and chris w turn up at mine at 11am, i've left a message with mucker marsh but he doesn't trap, ben is having new wheels fitted to his bimmer and picking his suit up, [fuck me, ben is jay-z!], dangerous turns up, we are off to curborough for the national hillclimber club meeting on the twisty sprint track, into the lion garage for fuel, 50 miles max on a tankfull on the sporty, i brim the tank and pay, we turn left onto the 517 to ashbourne, into ashbourne and onto the a515, past darley moor, there's a meeting on there today, down past the prison at sudbury, onto the a50 and back onto the 515 for the quick ride down towards lichfield, pick up signs for fradley and i know we are almost there, nearly miss the entrance to the sprint and we park up, barse get's the tea's in and we wander around the pits, there's some great stuff here, i'm looking at the 250cc velo and decide to have some sport, 'you should be ashamed of yourself'', i say, 'you should restore it and put it on display in a museum', 'fuck off', says one of the lads, 'mate, i'm taking the piss' i say, 'i know you are son',
say's the bikes owner, his mate chips in, 'he'll pay you to take a photo', brilliant, no over restored precious motorcycles, just bikes used and abused, we lunch on fried egg butties and tea, barse, chris w and gordie skin out, me and dangerous watch some more racing and skin out to darley-moor, things are different here, a different type of vibe, tension, if someone needed a clutch lever for a r1 or whatever you can picture them saying 'sorry mate, ain't got one' even if they have 5 in the van, you ain't valentino youth, your'e just a clubman racer, one of the feature races gets red flagged when one of the novice's has a big off, the leader slaps his bike and starts giving it the big 'whaddafuck' shoulder thing, mate, your fellow racer is down and injured, show some respect you twat.







































Friday, 23 July 2010


......so, friday afternoon, finish work, quick shave and shower and i'm at second-skin for a session with ben, 'the world's most handsome man', quick brew and down to work, we talk about 'festival of a 1000 bikes', tattoo's, mutual 'friend's', my ducati, rat's running across the road and getting squashed, ben's cat, my dog's, football, mz's, led zeppelin, the weather, roy, [ben's brother-in-law and my mate who sit's behind me at pride park or the home of the mighty, mighty, ram's, two week's 'til the new season, away to dirty, dirty leed's first match], the knocking shop across the street, chocolate hob-nobs, barse and jake turn up, we have a brew, ben get's his ape-hanger's out, [well, not his actual ape-hangers but the packaging that they arrived in, the bar's are at the powdercoaters for a good thrashing and painting in black], just another typical loveless afternoon then....



kicked the idea of trying to get to brand's this weekend into touch, we have to be realistic, the bike isn't ready and as ed [of fingy moto blog], told me we need to get the bike sorted before committing loads of money on race entries, van hire and days off work, i don't want to be standing in the pit's watching, i want to be out there, so i need to get my entry in for the cadwell meeting in august, get my finger out and sort the bike, found this lovely picture on e-bay believe it or not, love it, headlamp canked up at the stars, rust, paint peeling off the shed doors, mz badge on tank upside down, brilliant.........

Thursday, 22 July 2010


been looking for a cover for the carb for ages, had a bit of rag stuck in there but having nightmares about forgetting to remove it before starting the bike and it getting sucked into the motor, walked in the kitchen last night to wash my hands before having my tea at 10pm [again] and found this on the work top, fits great..........

.......i flick through the programme and
there it is black and white, d.crofts, 248 ducati, but then i look at the other riders on the list, tommy robb, 250, works honda, bill ivy, 250 yamaha, alan dugdale, 248 yamaha, terry grotefeld, 246 aermacchi, mick chatterton, 246 ducati, dangerous was there back in the day, big-up, d. crofts, 248 ducati...........

we get home around 7pm, unload the hire van quick beer and dangerous is gone, i sit in the shed, have another beer, my emotions are all over the place, quick shower and settle down to watch the second half of the world cup final, i pick up a couple of old race programmes that dangerous has left with me, mallory park...........

out onto the track for the sighting lap, mick comes past me on the rudge, bloody hell it's loud!, i follow him round until we come around the devils elbow and everyone starts to jockey for position, over the start and finish line and we are off, i pass mick into gerrads and don't see him again, mr fzr comes past down the straight but hasn't got a clue as we reach the esses, i stuff him on the inside and i'm away, round the hairpin, devils elbow and past he comes again down the straight, i stuff him again around gerrads, i'm flat on the tank, tucked in and he doesn't pass, my confidence in the bike is rising, the tyres are well scrubbed in, the handling is ok, no horrors like i expected, i'm 'old school', i can remember riding old brit's, twitchy 'strokers, bikes with bad suspension, tyres made from rubber out of a john bull printing set and big jappers, heavy, skinny tyres and loads of horsepower, i used to ride all year round until a few years ago so know about cold tyres, shit weather, dark, freezing winter mornings so riding an mz in lovely warm weather shouldn't be a problem, all of a sudden it all clicks into place and my nerves disappear, i become one with the bike, i can feel what's happening and my riding becomes smoother, one thing about riding on a track is that you get to go around the same corners over and over so you can get the line, find out where the bumps are and you don't have to worry about going 'round a corner and meeting a john deere head on, it's the way forward, my fingers are still wrapped around the clutch lever though, i can feel myself getting quicker and i start to lap some of the other lad's out there, all of a sudden the black and white flag is being waved and it's all over, i sit up and as i cruise back to the pits feeling good the bike stops, i scoot it back to the van, forty minutes untill the next session, i keep my leathers on as we go over the bike, it's frigging hot and i'm overheating, we wipe the bike down, check the plug, we need to jet down, too much fuel, tighten up the fasteners that have come loose, i'm drinking water likes it's going out of fashion, i'm dehydrated, i wheel the bike around to john's starter roller, he's given up now and changed into his civvies, '2nd gear, drop the clutch......', the bike starts but doesn't feel right, down to the holding area, marshall checks, onto pit lane, bike stops, bastard, onto starter rollers, bike starts, stops, onto starter roller, bike starts, bike stops, i push back to the pits, dangerous has the stand out, my day is over, too hot, jettted too big, don't want to damage the bike, i slump in one of the fold-out camping chairs still in my leathers, i'm gutted........ then, nige, des's team mate in the bmzrc championship turns up, we met at cadwell a couple of weeks previous, 'been timing you mate, 1minute 20's', ' sorry mate', i say, 'is that anygood?', nige gives me the good news, 'the 600's are doing 1 minutes dead around here with about 90 brake, youv'e got about 30 brake and your'e doing 1minute 20, do the math' i change into my shorts, put a brew on and we pack up to leave.

Tuesday, 20 July 2010


second session, everybody is watching carl fogarty and freddie spencer so the pit's are a lot quieter, i get changed into my leathers, our mate john is zipped up, helmet on and ready to go, we help him push his bike onto the starter rollers, three tries, nothing, i back the 'zed onto the rollers and she fires up straight away, dangerous is running backwards and forwards down the pits trying to bump start john, i ride down to the holding area, i'm first there this time, the marshall checks the scrutineering tag and my wristband, shows me the session number, 42 and i nod confirmation, i get a hefty slap across the shoulders, it's mick wild on his 1931 500 tt rudge, 'bloody clutch is slipping like a bastard, where were you yesterday?, i bought you a bike!', mick had promised me a ride on one of his other rudge's on saturday, but, as you know, we were trying to get the 'zed ready until 10pm on the saturday, i make my apologies and mick laughs, 'don't worry about it son', the holding area is rapidly filling up and i glance over my shoulder, everybody looks nervous just like me........ except the bloke on the yamaha fzr750 who appears to be sneering at my mz.......... and the other bikes in the line, your card's marked matey.

put the ducati on e-bay tonight, great bike and i'll be sad to see it go but i've been doing the maths and i can't afford to keep four bikes especially as i want to go racing, three meetings left this season, won;t make brands this weekend due to machine problems, [and lack of funds], that leaves cadwell and snetterton, got to get at least these two meetings under my belt and then get ready for next season, talking to some of the other lads in the club it seems you need to budget for around 6 grand, lot of money i know but i'm addicted so it's goodbye to the duc i'm afraid.....

Sunday, 18 July 2010


...........i change out of my leathers and boots, shorts and t-shirt and con's the order of the day, it's getting hot now, i put the kettle on and dangerous goes to work on the bike, it's filthy, oil and petrol from the overflow all over the bike, the two brass tubes araldited into the top of the float bowl to ease cavitation have fractured adding to the mix, there's brake dust and chain lube everywhere, we work in silence wiping down the bike and checking fasteners, the earth lead off the cylinder head to the top engine mount is loose, there's not enough thread left on the studs to fit nylock's, the bottom exhaust bracket has shaken itself loose so i tighten that, as we wipe the bike down we are tightening fasteners and checking the lock-wire to see if anything has moved, i check the fuel level, we have used loads so i carefully mix some more fuel and oil and top up the tank, i check the plug, we are running rich, not a bad thing on a new motor, i then realise how naive i've been, i haven't even got any spare jets or plugs with me, what a dickhead, real school boy error, my mood is lifted when 'the world's most handsome man' benjamin jones, debbie and steve marsh turn up, i'm touched that they have come to support me, ben has his 'los bastardos de le muerte' [the bastards of death], t-shirt on, los bastardos was one of those ideas we had when i was in for a long tattoo session and developed from there into a running joke, debbie and steve?, well iv'e known debbie for 30 years, way back from the 'telegraph' years and steve 'mucker' marsh over 35 years, i was his dad's apprentice and when steve started work a year after me after he got kicked out of school, i was a cocky sixteen year old and tried to tell him what to do, he sabotaged my puch vs50d and nearly killed me, we have been best mates ever since, i make more tea and we sit in the sunshine and watch dangerous helping john re-fuel his goldie and try and sort out his starting problems, [he changed the tank and knocked one of the leads off the coil], mucker offers me some pork pie, i tell him to fuck off and we then have twenty minutes of piss-taking out of me about being a vegetarian, 'meat is murder' i say, ben and steve give it me big-time, bastards!














.......so i'm off after matey on the bonneville, he starts to pull away from me down the straight but i'm tucked in and catch him on the esses, he is fighting the big triumph and it's weaving under braking, i drop down a gear and pass him but have to drop another gear mid-corner to give me the speed up the rise to the hairpin, we are side by side into the hairpin but i keep the inside line and the little 'zed turns in tight, i accelerate into the devils elbow and miss a gear, the revs are ridiculously high and i think about my engine turning into an improvised explosive device, my fingers wrap around the clutch a little more, to be honest i haven't taken my fingers off the clutch lever yet, and thinking about it in hindsight i still ride my four-strokes like this, must be a legacy of the seizures on my rd400's, bonny-boy passes me down the main straight but he's not pulling away as i get in his slipstream, into gerrads again and i make up more ground, into the esses and i hold the outside line he starts to brake and his bike sits up, he desperatley tries to scrub some speed off mid corner, i'm in too deep myself and have to feather the brake mid corner, bonny-boy loses the fight and heads onto the grass the bike bucking and weaving as he tries to keep it upright, i do another lap and as i approach the shaws hairpin again bonny-boy is re-joining the track, i pull over to let him back on and his side panel flicks up into the air and almost hits me on the head!, he must have knocked it with his knee when he was fighting his bike, the rest of the session goes in a flash, a couple of the 350 manxes and a 7r frighten me to death as they roar past me at twice the speed i'm going and the chequered flag comes out, i ride back into the pits, and my mouth is as dry as ghandi's flip-flop, i'm deaf and my head feels like it going to explode, the adrenaline is unbelievable, dangerous is shouting something at me but i don't comprehend and he gives up and just gives me a thumbs-up, i get off the bike and dangerous has the paddock stand under it in a flash........