Archive for the ‘vintage bikes’ Category

It’s that time of year again folks!

It may be hard to believe but the biking season will be starting again, no really I promise…


40th ANNUAL British MC Meet

CHANGE: June 10, 2018
318 Seven Bridge Road
Route 117, Lancaster, Mass.


The Annual British Motorcycle Meet™, held every spring, is the oldest British Motorcycle Meet in the United States. It is a non-profit event sponsored by the BSA Owners Club of New England.

Held in Auburn, Mass. for many years, in 2014 the Meet moved to the Bolton Fair fairgrounds in Lancaster, Mass. The Lancaster site offers many benefits including easy access from all directions, covered paviilions for inclement weather bike parking, food options for attendees, substantial parking for non-exhibitors. attractive grounds, and more.

All motorcycles welcome. Display area is for British motorcycles only.

• Tech sessions, trophies and awards
• Door prizes (must register British bike to qualify)
• Spacious, attractive grounds • Food available
• Free parking for cars and non-British bikes* Show and Flea Market open to British motorcycles only. Plenty of parking for cars and non-British motorcyckes * Trophies and Awards: Oldest Bike, Longest Distance, Most Technical Interest,People’s Choice, Best Custom, Best BSA, Best Norton, Best Triumph, and many more! Admission — $10 Adults – Under age 16 free with paying adult.


• Bike display area and Flea Market for British motorcycles and parts only. Plenty of parking for cars and non-British motorcyckes

• Trophies and Awards: Oldest Bike, Longest Distance, Most Technical Interest, People’s Choice, Best Custom, Best BSA, Best Norton, Best Triumph, and many more! Admission — $10 Adults – Under age 16 free with paying adult.


© BSA Owners’ Club of New England Inc. All rights reserved.



Fall can be a dangerous time as people tend to sell off bikes they don’t have the space for or just generally tire of looking at. Dangerous time indeed as I usually get snagged into a winter project that may or may not work out for the best.

It has been a few years since I entered a bike in the Moto Giro so I was intrigued when I saw a Yamaha 180 Bonanza pop up for sale on Craigs list. The YDS3 would be more of what I was looking for but good ones seem to be going for a lot of money these days. The YCS1 may only be 180cc but Yamaha twins tend to over deliver and this one is rated at 21 HP so it’s not exactly in the moped territory. They claim a 90 MPH top speed but I think that may be a little optimistic. 

The owner had rescued this from a shop in Vermont and it looked to have a good repaint and some new chrome. I made my usual low ball offer which he jumped at so I probably could have gone even lower.

To make a long story even longer, I did my usual routine of digging in way too deep and wound up doing more restoration than intended. New 2nd over pistons went in along with hours and hours of correcting earlier bodges. When I got it running I ran it up my street (between snowstorms) only to find out it was jumping out of second gear. AAAArrrrgggghhhh.

I cracked open the cases to find evidence of a previous hacker who only owned a hammer and chisel. The main fault was bent shift fork and some shoddy assembly work. The shift mechanism was a little iffy so that finally responded to treatment and after a quick freezing short test run it seems to work fine.

Anyway, here’s a video if the first startup but before the gearbox rebuild. So now she’s got new pistons, crank seals etc etc etc…..

I’d like to put some shakedown miles on it but it looks like another Noreaster snow storm headed our way (fourth this month) so I guess that plan is on hold

Here’s a quick rundown of the front isolastic installation on my 1974 Commando. I did it by stringing together a bunch of clips as I wasn’t sure I could make decent edit of a long video so I could just redo a segment if I had to. You Tube doesn’t offer their resident editor which was easy but did lack some flexibility. DaVinci 12.5 is very good but very complex for a neophyte ( like me ). Anyway it got done and in the future I may do some editing if I feel ambitious. 

(Looks like I did the first segment twice so you can skip the first minute and a half or so.)

So here it is warts and all:


This was on the adv rider site, it gives a pretty good cross section of different years and models of US import Norton commandos.

It’s been a nasty winter we need stuff like this to keep us going!




Not too long ago I received an email from someone looking for parts who lives in the UK and you can see his bike above.

This is probably one of the nicest if not THE nicest MKIII I have seen, and if you have a long look you can see a lot of mods that are not obvious to the casual observer. 

Fat rims and tires stand out along with the twin discs and probably a big bore exhaust. The 5 speed sticker gives away the transmission upgrade, the rear sets are more discreet along with the finned valve covers etc etc. 

There are (a lot) more mods, but suffice to say this one is a labor of love and I’m sure it goes as well as it looks.

‘Good on yer lad…


I haven’t posted in a while so I thought it’s a good time to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Here’s a couple pics that should bring a smile to even the Scroogiest among us…


A very natty Paul Dunstall