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Posts Tagged ‘Classic’

NW Hog Lamp - In the Shop

Old motorcycles represent good memories for me and I suspect for many of you reading this blog.

Honda introduced the CB750 motorcycle to the U.S. in 1969.  The bike was targeted directly at the U.S. market after company officials fully understood the opportunity for a larger bike.  It had 750-cc, 4-cylinder SOHC engine, electric start and disc brakes.  The motorcycle set the bar very high for manufactures.  Disc front brake and an inline four cylinder engine were previously unavailable on mainstream production bikes. And with a price under $1500 (U.S.) it had significant advantages over British competition.

All those new motorcycles left Japan for America and some forty odd years later you’ll find them forgotten in the auto wrecking yards across this land.

Finished lamp on the desk

John Ryland scours the Richmond, Virginia junk yards in search of the motorcycles and their recycled parts.  His main business is rescuing and creating retro-cool-custom bikes from the rustic heaps.  Not the West Coast Chopper or OCC slick and polished, rather the brutally sparse and elegant.  You see the steel and welding is straight up and honest.  At the time he worked in an ad agency, but the economy had its way and what was a hobby began as full-time adventure building motorcycles from parts and frames he found in junkyards and classified ads. The operation is called – Classified Moto.

I ran across John while catching the tail end of a CNN segment that featured a custom motorcycle builder who on a whim decided to a build a lamp.  Yes, the kind that lights up your life, or workshop or home décor.

As I watched this behind the scenes video I could almost smell the gasoline, grease and arc welder as John grinded and then aligned the metal springs and shocks on his workbench along with the transmissions gears and brake rotors.  The walls in one corner of his ‘office’ were covered in chalkboards and scribbled notes about how the lamps were built.  I decided right then that I had to have one of these “Road Warrior” welded and hammered out creations and decided to upgrade my desk – Classified Style!

Born Date

I did the ‘Google’ and placed an order a couple months back.  I ordered up “Honda CB750” circa 1980.   Yeah, I run with V-twins these days, but I’m talking about the four-into-four exhaust pipes classic!  Japanese models are widely regarded as the purest specimens and besides many collector’s may well make this invaluable.  John’s wife Betsy helps out in the shop and she kept me up-to-date on the order as it progressed.  They are a real joy to work with.  At one point they were running low on parts and had to run a special ops into S.C. where they scored a truck load of parts to keep up with the high-demand.

So, to the spirit of those who still find adventure behind the grips of an old motorcycle I say check out Classified Moto.  You’ll be humbled as people walk past and look twice while saying cool lamp!

Photos taken by author and courtesy of Classified Moto.

All Rights Reserved © Northwest Harley Blog
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Seaba Station Motorcycle Museum

The Seaba Station was built by John and Alice Seaba back in 1924 as a Sunray DX gas station on the now famous Route 66.

Sun Oil merged with Tulsa, OK-based Sunray DX Oil Company in 1968 which marketed gasoline under the DX brand in several midwestern states.  Sun Oil continued marketing its petroleum products under both the Sunoco and DX brands through the 1970s and into the 1980s. In the late 1980s, Sun began rebranding DX stations in the Midwest to the Sunoco brand which brings us back to Seaba Station.

Museum Location -- Warwick, OK

In 2007 the property was purchased by Jerry Ries and Gerald Tims who restored it to its original look.  They recently opened the property as  Seaba Station Motorcycle Museum on old Route 66.  Interestingly 25 years ago, the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials officially decertified U.S. 66 as a federal highway. In essence, U.S. 66 ceased to exist.  But I’ve digressed.  Mr. Tims owns Performance Cycle in Bethany, OK., and with that motorcycle interest in mind help populate the museum with some classic antiques.  One of the rarest motorcycles in the museum is a 1913 Pope Board Tracker, with a replica section of wooden track from that era to simulate what it would have been driven on.

Future plans include adding antique gas pumps to the front of the building and long-term they want to include a restaurant in one of the side rooms.  The museum is open seven days a week. Admission is free, but donations are accepted.

Route 66 is an old road, but it still “kicks!”   If you happen to be traveling the “Mother Road” then this museum is a  great place to stop and take in some motorcycle history.

Photo courtesy of Seaba Station and Route 66 News.

All Rights Reserved © Northwest Harley Blog

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Harley tells us it’s the real deal — and it’s coming soon.

Using nearly every marketing adjective possible in the dictionary  — raw, slammed, bulldog-stance, classic, radical, straight-on style, bad attitude, distinctive, authentic, broken-in, blacked out, aura of rebellion, custom cool styling and the ever fav “low profile” — to describe the new, but “old” Forty-Eight model.

The new motorcycle is a factory custom in the Sportster line and joins the Dark Custom family which includes the Nightster, Iron 883, Cross Bones, Fat Bob and Street Bob. More on the Dark Custom motorcycles is located HERE.   The 2010 H-D Sportster Forty-Eight is priced at $10,499 in black and $10,789 in silver or orange.

Sportster motorcycles became the starting point for many legendary choppers of the 1960s, and were also getting pumped up for dirt racing and daredevil stunt riding in the 1970s.  The 48 try’s to retain regain the aura of rebellion from the late 50’s, when the custom culture was formed by the hot rod era. 

I hear a lot of guys say they think Sportsters are starter bikes.  I’m not so sure, but they are typically short hop bikes unless you’re into punishment.  Given the economy and the price, H-D has just hit a bunch of folks straight in the face with this machine.  It’s a beauty!

Photo courtesy of H-D

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Münch Mammut 1200 TTS

Münch Mammut 1200 TTS

The results are in for the MidAmerica Vintage Motorcycle auction.  Thirty-six bikes sold for a total of $188,680.  The event took place October 11th in St. Paul, Minnesota. The auction high water mark was set by a Münch Mammut 1200 TTS, which sold at $57,240.  Most of the other bikes sold in well under $5K each. View the complete results here (.pdf) courtesy of SCM.

The Münch Mammut (translated from German), at the time the largest and fastest motorcycle in the world was designed by Friedel Münch of Münch Motorrad, its standard engine was a “massive” NSU automobile 1200 cc, 4-cyl. It offered three engine options, including a supercharged version. The company also offered a varied combination of seats and tanks. It was best known for its comfort and speed. The original company declared bankruptcy in 1971, then again in 1973. Friedl sold the rights to his company, but struggled on with production for several more years.  He attempted a comeback with the Mammut 2000, a DOHC, 1998cc, fuel-injected inline-four, with Cosworth cylinder heads and Schwitzer turbocharger which pushed 260 bhp and had a limited top speed of 159 mph – and sold for more than $80,000.

With banks failing and stock values deteriorating quicker than a rusty Vespa these collectibles are a safe bet in these troubled times…

Photo courtesy of web site.

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