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

Sunday, 30 September 2012

boxer racer project

cadwell park, last meeting of the season, i pick dangerous up at 0545 hrs, it's cold, dark and cold, [note the two 'cold's'] we are on the a38 at 0600 hrs heading to mansfield, there's nothing on the roads at this hour except the hgv's, i turn the radio on and golden earring comes on 'radar love' just seem's so appropiate, not much conversation, we listen to the prattle of the early morning 'graveyard shift' dj, to be fair, he's playing some good tunes, i suppose at this time no-one's going to ring in and complain anyway, maccee-dee's hoves into view, coffee time, i block an egg mcmuffin and a fresh java, dangerous just has the bean, we sit in the carpark, as the sun rises it becomes apparent that, even though the rubbish bin's are less than 10 feet away from each other, people are so bone idle that they just throw their discarded 'value-meal' or 'happy-meal' rubbish straight out of their vehicle window's, we watch the magpies, gull's, sparrow's and crow's circle around and pick at the remains, fair play to the bird's though, why go through that whole 'worm versus bird' scenario when you can just pop down mcdonald's? who want's to be an extra in a bill oddie bbc documentary when you can hang around the carpark with the local boy-racer's, fuck all that 'life and death' shit, 'large fries, strawberry shake and the remains of a big-mac for me thank's, don't want any of that birdseed malarkey' we get to cadwell at 0815hrs, the paddock is packed, bike out of the hire van, straight down to technical inspection, we fail, no chain guard, i explain it's a shaft, the scroot wink's at me and applies a sticker, noise testing, 100 decibel's on the button, [105db limit at cadwell], leather's, boot's, helmet and gloves, nice lady gives me a sticker for my arai, sign-on at the race office, forfeit my licence and membership card for my transponder, get my practice tab, 'attention paddock, attention paddock, first practice, solo's' down to the holding area' out onto the glorious track that is cadwell park, narrow, uphill, downhill, blind summit's and hairpin's, a rollercoaster drop down from the gooseneck, the famous 'mountain' brilliant, we are flagged off after ten minutes and i immeadiately join the back of the next practice seesion, down to the assembly gate, girl ask's me for my tab, 'been out already, any chance of another session' she gives me a smile and let's me in, another ten minute session, the track is still damp under the tree's and need's to be navigated with caution, flagged off, quick brew and we are out for the first b.e.a.r's race, there's a healthy grid, fifteen bikes, i'm on row eight, light's out and everyone dissapears leaving me in last place, at least i don't get lapped, off the bike, change out of my leather's and do some serious soul searching, i'm riding the wheel's off the bike, i just need more hp, the jota is running 2010 suzuki wheel's, a 180 rear tyre, floating disc's and trick jap caliper's, how the fuck can i compete with that on a bog-stock, probably 40 bhp motor, my bike is built to the rules, very frustrating, i just want to throw the towel in and go home, i get a few spectator's coming and offering me encouragement and it really makes a difference, next race is after dinner, i manage two lap's and the right carb falls off exiting hall bend's, i push my bike off the track and at the invitation of the startline marshall's spend the rest of the race spectating from the pitwall, bike in the recovery van for the ride of shame, good crack with the recovery lad's who drop me off at the van, bloody hell, it's cold, dangerous makes me a brew and nail's the carb back on, i sit in the back of the van, fighting white finger, my nose dribbling and supping tea, at least we are out in the last race, novices and solo motorcycles unlimited up to 1948, it's 1500 hrs and the light is fading, [did i mention it was cold?] by 1815hrs the scooter's are called up, we stand ready to go, waiting for the call to the assembly area, 1830 hrs and that's it, 'race 22 novices and 1948 nunlimited will be run tomorrow, time permitting' i'm gutted, van loaded and hit the road, saw the sun rise and saw it set, it's been a long day, 17 hour's, unload the van, rejig the shed to get everything in, quick peroni, shower and catch the last half hour of 'master and commander' on the box, you know what? i wouldn't change a second of it.......

Friday, 28 September 2012

friday night

friday night, cadwell tomorrow, up extra early door's, 0500 start for the two and a half hour drive up to cadwell,need to check the bike over, [we've had six week's to do it but end up looking at it the night before, go figure?] we are bound to forget something, alway's do, major crisis before we set off, we only have a half full, [half empty?] gas canister, we may run out of gas and not be able to mash, see how hard it is being me? nite, nite everyone, sleep tight.......

hello, hello, it's good to be back, it's good to be back....

ey up.i'm back, sorry for the last post, jessica loveless has hacked me again to post photo's and word's on my blog, top photo is of ben 'fucking' jones,[probably the best tattoo artist this side of er, allenton] and my old time, brotherman, steve marsh, [this wanker tried to kill me first day we met, wired a piece of wire straight off my ht lead into my fuel tank on my puch vs50d moped] we have been through a lot since, both lost our dad's, couple of marriages, girlfriend's, kid's, tattoo's, fight's [dirty, horrible violence, pain, injury, stitches and broken bones sticking out of flesh, blood, snot and excrement] laugh out loud moments, hanging upside down on a barbed wire fence trying to sneak into donington park for the gp's, skateboarding, [both toss at it, major hospital time usually],punk rock, converse, jumping off bridges into the river, [one classic afternoon saw marshy narrowly getting hit by a train, losing his footing and diving headfirst into the murky, pollution filled river derwent and smashing his already ugly fucking mug into a submerged shopping trolley]getting chased around sawley on vinny's [rip] xt 500 yam by the bobbies on pushbikes, fist fighting with the local's in repton, hopelessly outnumbered, steve can't just let it go and keep his fucking gob shut, so, we always end up fighting, i just wanted to go home but can't see this twat getting a right royal kicking, we usually end up beaten black and blue, stripped to the waist, back to back, football on the sand in welsh wales on a bank holiday, barstool's, glasses, fighting everyone in close proximity, gypsy's, the police and fairground workers, labourer's, plasterer's, electricians and site agents the length and breadth of this fair isle, ladies and gentleman, mr steve marsh, [keep your mouth shut wanker, i'm getting too old for this malarkey].........

jessica loveless takes over, read 'em and weep mofo's

Friday afternoon, diet red bull, radio 2, pistols and machine guns, uncle steve and random visitors, mad laughter and ginger beards... Leg twitching, bepanthen and itching... Ribs are a breeze, relaxing into it makes it almost theraputic.. Feet are a different story.. But Ben Jones - "the worlds most handsome man" (second only to Barry Gibb) has done a lovely job! Safe to say that i had an ace day and came out with some awesome artwork. Too bad the old guy (my dad) ditched me for racing his shonky old boxer.. really needs more BHP if he wants to compete.. although, i think theres a sad satisfaction gained from showboating at the back. cruising two fingers up at the crowd and marshals.. amongst several opportune photographs to be achieved as people are just about to lap him.. makes him look like he's winning! He really needs to try harder.. Jessica Loveless x

Thursday, 27 September 2012

number thirteen

thursday is the new friday

with all the excitement of the aermacchi hitting the shed, the boxer has been a little 'neglected' this week, not good, especially as i'm racing it this weekend, dangerous turned up tonight after a week away, we had agreed to spend some time prepping the boxer, instead we end up sitting in the shed looking at the aermacchi, i've done some digging regarding the history of this machine, you wouldn't believe how small a world this is, all will be revealed shortly, but for now, here's a mint picture of a girl on a boxer, i really need to get sorted tomorrow, time is running out, less time admiring the aermacchi, more time preparing the boxer.....

Tuesday, 25 September 2012

aermacchi-metisse

removing the minimal bodywork exposes the frame and you can see the amazing workmanship of the brother's rickman frame building emporium in glorious close up, the frame is massively braced in any area that may flex, check out the tubes on the headstock, there's no way that that is going to do anything but tell you exactly what's happening at the front wheel, i can't decide what the fork's are, they look italian for sure, they are a massive 41mm, [the boxer's are 35mm and it must weigh a third more than the aermacchi]ceriani perhaps, or maybe metal profile?, i'll get some photo's of the bottom of the leg, it's an unusual 'round to square casting' where the front wheel spindle fit's, back to the frame, there's an air of real quality about it, the welding, [or brazing? must look up how they are constructed] is class, the bracket's made with care and attention to detail, the simple rod's to mount the tank, the swing arm and shock mountings and the bracket for the remote float chamber,hand made by an artisan who must have loved his craft, no wonder the frames were nickel plated, why would you want to hide that work under a layer of powder coating? speaking of the nickel coating, it's gone very dull and tarnished from it's quarter of a century sitting under that blanket, i gently rubbed the frame under the seat rail with a rag and some solvol and the finish is still very good, not as 'hard' on the eye as chrome, the nickel has a softer look to it, almost a yellow tinge from the plating process i guess, lovely.....

Monday, 24 September 2012

aermacchi-metisse

with ten minutes to spare before mr's b is serving up our evening meal i drift out into the shed, i'll just have time to remove the front mudguard, fuel tank and seat, the mudguard is a doddle, it just clip's to the fork-legs with jubilee clips, the tank, once you have undone the tiny jubilee clip's holding the petrol feed pipes to the twin pet-cock's, is easily removed, it's held on to the top frame rails with a rubber strap that fit's into a recess on the tank top, the strap has four stainless hooks rivetted to it that hook under two slim mountings welded between the frame rails at the rear of the tank and just behind the headstock, simple, like all the best ideas, just what you need at the track, mrs b puts her head around the shed door, 'it's ready, are you coming?' i note the mild irratation in her voice, 'i've just got to get this seat off and i'll be in' i reply, 'ill put your's back in the oven then' and she's gone, the seat is anything like a quick release item, there are three mountings on the seat, one off the back of the seat hump and the other two that attach the seat base to the upper frame rails, the mounting screws are fibreglassed into the base and have become loose, either through vibration or just wear and tear and are spinning as i try and remove the nuts, to add some comedy value i can see green loctite on the protruding threads, i eventually manage to get the seat pad off and the mounting bolts are revealed as plain head panheads, like a guttering bolt, which i suppose is what they are, i carefully sawcut a slot in the top of each bolt and tap a strike-through driver into the slot, at last it comes free and after an hour i can stand back and admire the naked frame, another fifteen minutes just staring at the bike and i'm in for yet another dried up supper, guess there's going to be a few more of those along the way......

Sunday, 23 September 2012

aermacchi-metisse

late night's, early morning's, can't stop looking at the aermacchi in the shed, the more i look, the more it makes sense, the weight of the machine is low down, the centre of gravity almost perfect, with a wheel-base of 54 and a quarter inches, [that's a quarter of an inch shorter than the boxer and a massive three and a half inches shorter than the sporty, the aermacchi looks long, but in reality, it's shorter than a very short thing, almost up with the wheelbase of a modern cbr 600rr at 54.7 inches, this bike is amazing, we don't know anything about it really, the front wheel for example, to me, it look's like it should be rocking a four-leading shoe drum in that massive casting instead of a little cast iron disc and ap lockheed caliper, why is it twin plugged but only running a single coil/ht lead? at the end of the day though, it's whole point of being is a no-compromise machine, built to go around a race track as fast as possible, i just don't know if i can do it justice.....

the loveless vinyl vault [aka skeletons in the cupboard}

Saturday, 22 September 2012

if you want blood......

strong beer? classic bikes? road racing? absofuckinglutelymental! czechoslavakia, got to get over there, from a link on the british historic racing forum......

aermacchi-metisse

did i really have too much to dream last night? i had to get up very early this morning to make sure that it really did happen, there on the bench is an aermacchi-metisse, after sweary mick's new project arrived in his shed, a 350 aermacchi racer in a replica harris frame, he made the decision that rather than the 250 metisse spending another 25 years under a blanket in the shed me and dangerous should poke it with a stick and race it on a 'you bend it, you mend it' basis, you can't say fairer than that really, what an oppurtunity, we jumped at the chance and went to pick the bike up last night, after some heaving and sweating moving some of sweary mick's other bikes around, we got the metisse on chalky's trailer and mick's 350 aermacchi back up on his bench, no small task as the wheels are out and we had to man-handle it from one shed to the other, after the same amount of grunting and exertion getting the boxer off our bench, the sporty out of the shed and the aermacchi up on the bench then re-packing the increasingly diminutive available shed space with bikes we cracked open a couple of peroni's and just sat looking at the beautiful little race bike, the frame is a work of art, the frame rails look massive, the aermacchi 250cc single cylinder engine hanging between the frame rails as a stressed member, the 30mm dellorto downdraught carb standing straight-up, topped with an open bell mouth, the twin leading shoe rear brake, yep, twin rear brake, the unusual front rim and ap lockheed brakes, the brown suede seat, narrow clip-on's and long slim petrol tank, the bike need's a lot of work to recommission it, the tyres are as hard as a junkyard dog, the brakes are seized, fork seals shot and of course, the engine hasn't run for a quarter of a century, but, well, what else you going to do? watch the x-factor..........

Friday, 21 September 2012

aermacchi-metisse

can you guess what it is yet?

well.it's actually happened,the boxer is off the bench and the other bike is up on it, need's a lot of work to get it race ready, but, hey, it's going to be a long winter.....

Thursday, 20 September 2012

so, we end up doing a job for a mate of dangerous's who is struggling to find a rear sprocket for his bike, the one on his machine is more hooked than captain hook's hook, it's totally f[hooked], we get a blank, right pitch, right number of teeth, [51, erm, rings a bell somewhere in the dark recesses of the 'ol loveless swede]from talon, brilliant, arrives next day, we nick the idea of the person who owned the bike before and rather than re-inventing the wheel, make a carrier out of the old spprocket, bore the centre of the blank sprocket to suit and mount up with some 8mmx25mm hex heads, cleaned up on the lathe and dished on the miller for that 'race' look, which is good because it's for a racer, yep, it's for a ...bugger, anyone got a bob for the meter?

Wednesday, 19 September 2012

the view belongs to everyone

just a little teaser, full details might be revealed on friday, [or might not if it all fall's through]