Saturday, 23 December 2017

Sidecar fun

With all the house moving going on there hasn't been enough time for motorcycling fun so we decided today to go out on the sidecar, no painting or moving stuff, just us and our bike. The plan was to do a loop around the Meldins (the scene of last years New year camping trip) bu a road accident had closed the road towards Peebles, the policemen just pointed us up a single track road, no other clues, they were as helpful as a fart in a spacesuit! When the road turned to gravel and mud I had doubts this was the way we should be going but we took the opportunity to do some off roading anyway. Loads of other cars were heading up the road we had found out was a dead end so I had to stop every one and give them directions, my good deed for the day. A really great day out with lunch at the red barn and apart from the mentalists on the Edinburgh bypass most of the other roads were quiet. Kinda glad we still have the outfit for now.
I hope you all have a great Christmas and a fantastic 2018, we are looking forward to our move to Perth in time for 2018 so next year some different bike rides I think. Many thanks to all who take the time to comment, I enjoy the abuse, take care out there.

Looking clean outside Alex's house
We're on a road to nowhere (feel free to sing along like Chris Rea)  
Mud, braw!
Not too shabby a day for motorcycling
At the red barn with a very mucky outfit
It's ok a quick jetwash and its clean again

Thursday, 7 December 2017

Not much going on.........

But then again plenty happening in the background, first some bad news, a good friend of ours from Applecross Ali (Snoddy) McLeod went missing from his boat a couple of weeks ago, he has as yet not been found. If you visited Applecross and went to the Inn then no doubt you would have met him, as well as being front of house for the last few years he was also the fisherman who supplied most of the seafood. He was a pillar of the local community, a passionate Scot and cared deeply for the environment which he lived and worked in, he is and will be sorely missed.
We found this out literally an hour before we gave a talk to the Glamis Vintage club on our recent trip to Nepal, the talk went well but both of us had a weird feeling, not ourselves, thinking about Ali but as they say in showbiz the show must go on.
The same day we also went looking at houses in Perth, we saw one we liked and on the Monday called the lawyer, in 10 minutes it was ours! I have taken longer to buy motorbikes! Hopefully in the fullness of time I can get the whole fleet housed in the same place which will be excellent.
So for now not much bike stuff happening as its all hands to the pump trying to get the flat ready for sale and then it'll be Christmas.

When it comes I hope you all have a great one but spare a thought for our friends who haven't made it into 2018.
Some pics from Alaska, mainly on our trip by ferry up the Inner Sound to end on a happy note...........

Tuesday, 7 November 2017

A different weekend

I was left to my own devices this weekend as Mrs R had a Yoga workshop up North so I decided to get out with the camera(s) and snap some pics of Autumnal Scotland, nice couple of nights at Sunart Camping on the Ardnamurchan peninsula then a night with David and Anne at Minard and then met up with Fiona at Port Appin for the night. To be honest I was glad not to be on the bike for a change, it was pretty dreich a lot of the time despite the blue skies in the photos. Still a lot of tourists around and even the bloody annoying motorhomes are still in evidence and still being driven by in the main selfish bastards! It also reiterated to me the fact that our cousins in the North get a very raw deal when it comes to mobile coverage and Broadband speeds, shocking really.
Railway viaduct in glen Ogle (closed in the 60's)
Loch Sunart
Near Glenuig
Storm clouds rolling in towards Glenuig
Rainbow at Corran ferry
Strontian Sunday morning
Glencoe with a dusting of snow
Rail bridge at the South of the Glen
More steam McPhail
Falls of Dochart
Loch Sunart
Loch Moidart
Corran ferry
Corran ferry lighthouse
Kilchurn Castle
Bus party at Hotel = avoid like the plague 
Lismore ferry
Bleak conditions for the last ferry home
And finally a whisky named after David's Norton

Thursday, 2 November 2017

Day out cut short

Thursday and the sun is shining, a tad cold but no complaints for the 2nd of November, I decided to give the T3 a run and hopefully get some Autumnal photos. I was riding down the A702 towards Biggar and then for a wobble around the borders thinking life was good after a slightly depressing week dealing with my Norton rebuild but being thwarted at every turn by shite parts but even the Guzzi gods conspired against me, just outside Biggar my 850 T3 became a 425 single (again). I pulled into a layby and noticed petrol pissing everywhere, of course as it was a shortish run I made the stupid mistake of not taking tools, not even my swiss army knife which fixes 60% of roadside issues. By pulling and poking I managed to stem the flow of fuel going over my hot exhaust, the fuel pipe (which I've never been happy with and have been meaning to fix was kinked, the kink meant the force of the full tank of fuel was forcing its way out of the tap union which I then  found it was slack, roadside bodgery got it going and with no fuel leaks but that was the end of the run, just a return to base. As I entered the Morrisons triangle (a mile triangle surrounding my local supermarket where all the drivers are blind, stupid and suicidal) I was trying to get away from a particularly nasty Audi owner, who obviously has a small penis when I heard a rattle on acceleration, not good, I limped home despondent. Fast forward a couple of hours, new fuel pipe of more suitable robustness and anti kink fitted and all back together, a test run revealed no rattle and a perfectly running 850 again, I suspect the rattle was due to the bodge I had done to lift the back of the tank, the vibration at 3000 revs setting up a worrying noise. All good now, just thought I'd write it up to let you know that at the moment I'm thinking old bikes are crap!

425 Single Guzzi
Kinked hose

Sunday, 29 October 2017

Dry again

A dry weekend but stormy feeling on Saturday with the high winds and I doubt if the temperature made it to double figures on Sunday but so far no salt on the roads so another chance to wear out some old motorbikes, Nortons were the order of the day on Saturday and a Norton- Moto Guzzi combo on Sunday. We visited some cool places locally and drank tea in several cafe's which was good. I am though getting worried about the Scottish "government" and their headlong race into the electric vehicle abyss without as far as I can see it much thought about the consequences. Matter of fact I'm increasingly concerned about many things they seem to be doing, lowering the drink drive limit so we can barely have a beer before we find ourselves criminalised unlike our fellow countrymen who live South of the imaginary line in the Scottish borders. Our First Minister (the head of the big gravy train that makes these rules) seems determined to make us suffer at every turn, keen to encourage immigration even though its becoming impossible to move around in the Central belt these days, and my personal favourite, increasing taxes for anybody that decides to work hard to no doubt subsidise many of the people coming to live here and choosing not to work. Our economy is staggering along and yet the amount of new houses being built is incredible, it seems every large and small town is growing exponentially, where are all the people getting money to buy them? Soon the Central belt will be one huge concrete jungle from coast to coast and i'm pretty sure no one really wants that.
Now you see why I travel, it stops you thinking too much, how I laughed at some of the crazy political stunts in south America, now its not so funny because I can see now ALL politicians are mental no matter where they are and here in good old Bonnie Scotland they seem more mental than most (no matter which group of loonies they belong to)
Time to get on my bike again I think, before I think too much and get depressed!
Some pictures to cheer you up if you've read this far!
Old bikes admiring the old bridge
Old bikes, old Hoose
Linlithgow palace, birthplace of Mary Queen of Scots
Autumn Colours 
Palace and the Abbey
Not sure why they havent got the double glazing salesman round?
Mary, she was a bit of a gal, lost her head eventually
House of Binns (the same family have lived here for hundreds of years)
with a view over the firth of Forth
Fionas hair showing the wind effect 
Almost like a fairytale castle
Nortons at rest next to the posh hoose
Look almost all day out and still shiney
The 3 bridges, the new one still; has a 40mph limit on it for some inexplicable reason causing major tail back all the time
Looking through the square window
The Kelpies, one eating the grass
The other getting its chin Tickled
We do seem to be good at this shit
Moto Guzzi in view so it must be Sunday
The Falkirk wheel, a boat lift for those boats that don't fancy the stairs
Going up
Going Brown
Going home