Sunday, 16 July 2017

Busy and some motorcycling

Its been a busy week, picked up the Mk3 Commando from one of my storage locations and my cylinder head from Derek at Engine Resource in Dundee, work started immediately to get the Mk3 ready for an MOT, a service, clean and a check over took until Thursday, some work on my old van to get it also ready for its MOT. Friday a trip to Cherrybank garage to get the bike and van MOT'd, some minor issues with the van which was expected so i took the bike to do some visiting, tax it and by then the van was ready, not a bad morning, 2 vehicles MOT'd and taxed and all by 10.30am.
One good bit of news is my MK3 Commando is now over 40 years old so eligible for historic tax, it was easier than I thought, into the Post Office with my logbook (V5) with a change of taxation class filled in and signed, hand it over with the new mot, a few keystrokes later I got my slip back (The PO will send off the logbook to the DVLA) and tax for a year all for £0 , I smiled, at last all my Nortons are Historic tax now so cost nothing. One good thing about this is I will hopefully be more inclined to have more of the fleet on the road since all it'll cost me is the cost of an MOT test, result!
Today (Sunday) we had an early blast down towards Biggar to see some of the guys from the Vintage club start one of their runs, a brief chat with a few of the guys and a look at the nice bikes topped off with a bacon roll and cup of tea at The Big Red Barn, colder than expected but a great way to spend a Sunday morning.
We have been dog sitting for the last 3 weeks (not my idea!!) so today the dog was returned to its rightful owners, I'm sure it is happy but not as happy as me, a dog in a very small house isn't fair on any of the parties, I'll be sweeping hairs up for the next year I think, mind you it was good at lying outside the garage when I was working and scaring away small children and pests. Normal life has been resumed.

A trio of Nortons at our disposal today
But we took these two
Nice Velo 
A Panther, 600cc single made in Yorkshire, don't challenge the Panther Owners Club to a 5 a side football match (A joke any Bike readers who admired Paul Sample's work will remember)
Honda's are classic now...
Nice pre war Sunbeam with it's STD numberplate 
George Ogg's Velo wearing it's tea cosy
AJS special was interesting
Nice line up
Ariel Red Hunter I think
Plenty Velo Fellow's
Norton & BSA compete for attention
I suspect there has been polishing going on here
The leap of faith
Ready for the off
BSA Single
Scott two stroke making moves
And they're off
The numberplate could be a ticket from the sexual diseases clinic
For Bert
George shouting abuse
Flat tanker getting an assisted start (Mind you a modern BMW also had to get push started!)
I think a beard is compulsory for membership to the Panther club
If you can't bring your classic bike why not tag along in your classic car, very nice

Monday, 3 July 2017

Progress but slow

So progress continues in the garage albeit slower than i'd like, problem is 44 years of dirt and oil accumulating in places you can't normally reach means everything takes an age to clean. I'm doubting now given the current pace of work if MVD will be ready for the International in August so I'll get the Mk3 Interstate ready as a back up.
Finally unboxed (after its sat in my attic for 2 years!)  my new Fullauto head, made in Australia and expensive but hopefully worth it, a few other mods taking place and hopefully it'll see the next 44 years going strong (by which time I may only use it occasionally!)
Work of art, seems a shame to put it on a bike!
Pretty and very new like
Today spent removing the rocker spindles out of the current head for re use, this head was a second when I bought it about 25 years ago but its done the job for a few miles!

Tuesday, 27 June 2017

Ardnamurchan Norton weekend

The 23rd of June is a special day, not only did the battle of Bannockburn start on this day but its also the anniversary of my 21st birthday so what better way to spend it but in company of friends and the Norton Club in Ardnamurchan. A wet and windy run most of the way and colder than of late which wasn't good but an enjoyable hurl up the road anyway. Our destination was Sunart camping at Strontian, an excellent site with great facilities and Tim the owner is also a keen motorcyclist, I can't recommend it highly enough.. A good turnout, Friday evening in the bar and an early bath for me due to peaking too early although judging by the faces on Saturday I suspect there was overindulgence amogst some of the others. Saturday some went for a run but it was pissing down so we just wandered around the area and talked nonsense which was great. Saturday evening the girls organised a BBQ at the campsite which was excellent and with the assistance of some whisky the evening went very well. A great bunch of people and great banter all round. Sunday raining (of course) and to be honest the first part of the run as far as Lix Toll I felt wobbly, some days you get on the bike and it doesn't flow, luckily it doesn't happen often, this was not helped by passing an accident just North of Onich and then riding through Glencoe which is full of tourists braking suddenly to ooh and aah at the scenery (Feckwits!!!!) However by Lix Toll life was good again and we had a splendid dry run home for part 2. Thanks to all for making it a great weekend!
Clean, loaded and ready to go
Stop for a heat and a cuppa at the Green Welly
Ferry crossing makes it feel like a real holiday
Jim's Commando (Not Fiona's)
Fiona's Commando and my 70 roadster
Phils faithful steed
Even in the rain its nice
I predict a fryup, hillarious
Twa craws sat upon the wa!
Twa windswept fowk sittin on a wa!
They make whisky out of this water you know
In the bothy at Sunart, braw
Laurenne in control of the cooking
Anne helping
Fiona tasting!
Good craic
Plenty whisky
Phil and Jim discussing which is the best polish!

Sunday, 18 June 2017

Grand day oot

Surprisingly warm today and no rain, a most unusual kind of weather for us here in Scotland, Martin visited us this morning and I was surprised to see he hadn't brought the West coast rain with him. Off we set for a bimble around the borders, Fi riding the Commando for the first time this year. In Peebles I spotted two Nortons on the pavement, It happened to be Bill and Campbell from Aberdeen returning from a Norton do in Northumberland, Bills Atlas decided to go sick. Some poking and hoping and we managed to get it running but not sure for how long as we hadn't really identified the issue, anyway was glad to be of some help.
Riding down and then along by St Mary's Loch we spotted George Martin on his pushbike (too tight to put petrol in his Triumph or BSA I think) we stopped for a blether and then he joined us at the cafe for further blethering. Plenty bikes in evidence here. A jaunt then over to Meggat Dam and then to Biggar for another stop for tea (you can't have enough tea on a warm Summers day) we said goodbye to Martin and eventually we wobbled home. A great day out with both Nortons running great, Fi getting about 20mpg than me which is annoying but I put it down to the fact I'm twice the size and she has a fairing.
Nortons being worked on!
Fi happy with the Commando
Martin happy with his ER6 (George pedaling furiously )
Tea stop
George and Fi
This is a nice view but glad Fi stopped where she did as its a bit of a drop!
Martin happy with the run I think