Posted: November 17, 2018 in British Bikes






Posted: September 26, 2018 in British Bikes

Norvin   (Norton frame with a Vincent engine)

Here’s a customer’s project that turned out very nicely indeed. By using a leftover Commando frame, he created a “poor man’s Egli”.  I guess poor man’s anything when you’re talking Vincent is relative but he certainly kept to a script on this one. Not over the top or hopelessly blinged out I think he hit home run here. Just a little snip here and there and you’ve got a frame that makes it look like it was made for the job.   Good on yer lad!        

Norton was facing federal regulations in the early 70’s and the “crossover exhaust” was a quick and easy way to take some of the bark out of the Commando exhaust. It boosted the midrange, and  toned down the racket.

Everyone was so happy that they knocked off early and called it a day and went off to the pub . However the storm clouds didn’t go away and Norton was history in the US after the 1975 Mark III….

I also won a trophy from the Larz Anderson European bike day show for best Norton!

Jolly good then!



Time for the biggest bike event in the Boston area, Sunday Sept 9, 2018 at Larz Anderson Museum in Brookline MA




Sunday August 5 @ Larz Anderson Museum of Transportation in Brookline MA. As usual, I didn’t edit this (obviously) but in the end you get the idea. It was HOT; upper 90’s and the crowds were blocking the fancy cars so it was hard to get proper shots but overall not too bad. Did I mention it was HOT? We sat in the shade in the Alfa area and chatted up Tom Lesko the el presidente of AONE. More Alfas than I usually see at this show and it was a welcome change. Lots of beautifully restored cars and many drivers. Bene, ciao’ baby



This is about the Yamaha 180 Bonanza twin coils but it applies to all motorcycles, hey there’s a Norton in the background! 

The bike was running OK  but not really up to what it should be, I mean I ran the Vermont Moto Giro on it and the Tiddler Tour in Connecticut for a total of about 450 miles and lived to tell the tale. Since the bike wasn’t a runner when I bought it (far from it!) I wasn’t completely sure what to expect but I have owned Yamaha two strokes and generally they punch way above their weight. This one not so much.

So after monkeying around with the timing and carburetion for the 99th time I was scratching my head and considering employing a clairvoyant to help me out. These problem children seem to seek me out and I was determined to determine what was going on. So I rolled the bike outside to go for yet another test ride and fate intervened, the left cylinder went dead so I finally had some rock solid clues.

As you will see in the video the coil had finally given up the ghost after working well enough to throw me off the scent. When it went Tango Uniform it was clear what I had been chasing. The windings had shorted to ground but in a way that it still had some resistance and enough continuity to actually make some sparks when it wasn’t under a heavy load. (high BMEP for you eggheads out there).

Anyway needless to say I slapped on some nice PVL coils (made in Germany) that I had in the spare parts bin and she woke up and smelled the coffee so to speak. Full power throughout the rev range. Now I can do some carb tuning and get on to some other projects.


Decided to play hooky with some friends and we rode down to the Newport Car Museum in Newport Rhode Island.

It’s located on unused Raytheon property and is a top notch museum containing a selection of muscle cars and imported exotica. First time I’ve been up close and personal with a Porsche 918 and a Jag XJ220.

All the cars run, and docents wander around if you have questions. The facility is used for conventions and meetings, and also has a brace of video simulators. 

Definitely worth a look if you’re in the area.