Just finished uploading a batch of contemporary ads so, until more stories come my way, the listing for 1925 is now complete. A change being as good as a rest I’m now taking a break from the 1920s to concentrate on 1969, the year I caught the motor cycling obssesion (though truth be told the Villiers 2T-powered Ambassador I bought from a school chum nearly cured me of it). So farewell Wal Handley and cool, man to Peter Fonda. Easyriders and CB750s here I come.
Having started updating the stories in 1925 I was happily engaged in sorting out some pics of the glorious Czech Bohmerland when I came across the Bohmerland 21, a resurrected “Bohmerland for the 21st century” which, unlike the reserrected Jawas, is produced in the Czech Republic. You’ll find pics in 2019. Also in 1925 you’ll find a report on the TT, including mention of a scarily close shave. Pics will be added soon with more stories and pics to follow. And, while I think of it, Happy New Year. My resolutions incolve a 1936 Panther M100, a 1952 BSA Golden Flash and a 1971 MZ ES250/2. May your motor cycling resolutions come to pass.
The MSS and MSS500 are on-line and they are magnificent hunks of motor cycle. Look for them in 1949 and 1957. The Antwerp Demon story is in place too, complete with a surprising BSA connection; Jan Oliesagers (in the A-Z Galimaufry under ‘O’ for obviously) had two cool nicknames and earned them both. The King of the Belgians was certainly an admirer. And by good chance I came across not one, nor even two, but three gorgeous streamliners which you’ll find in 1938 and 1947.
Just uploaded to the 1911 features list: The Motor Cycling Club’s Boxing Day Run, which took 100 hardy souls from London to Exter and back. Uploading it even inspired me to get off my backside, still suffering from a Christmas surfeit, and go for a ride. It’s a great yarn, including personal reminiscences from the likes of Dreadnought builder and rider Oily Karslake who concluded: “Every man who has won a medal thoroughly deserves it.” I’ve also been adding lots of pics to Le Melange and to most years from 1910-23 as well as unearthing details of what happened to the The Shilovsky Gyrocar in 1912 and the 4.5-litre V-twin MSS in 1949. And the Gallimaufry, which has been sadly neglected, is about to gain a few words on the Demon of Antwerp (look under O for Olieslagers; yet another ripping yarn).
I’ve been busy sorting and posting illustrations in 1908-12 as well as more contemporary adverts, including a particularly interesting selection from 1912.
You don’t need a computer laden adventure bike to go mountaineering. Check out the 1912 features section for a lengthy touring yarn concerning two plucky chaps who took their single-speed, pedal assisted bikes on a tour of the Tyrol. It really is a smashing read.
Having uploaded a report on the 1904 London show I’ve added a se;ection of illustrations from the event and the first batch of the ads that accompanied the report. One of these includes a list of vehicles for sale that makes interesting reading.
Hardy rallyists braved blocked passes in Wales and bitter cold in the Eifel mountains to drink, tall tall tales, sing their hearts out and mourn missing friends. Motor Cycle staffers joined them at the Dragon and Elephant Rallies. Indians were reborn with plans for a range stretching from 50s to an ohc 1,200cc four. Kawasaki upped the ante with a 500 triple—and Honda changed everything with the awesome CB750. Take a look at 1969 for this and much more (including the ticket collector who was given an Ariel) then back up a year where two of the finest roadtesters on the planet reviewed a year’s worth of bikes from the mighty Rocket 3s to the cute Suzuki B100P. After which do pop back to 1904 for a show report and an essay on one of the hot topics of the day: were motor cycles better off with or without pedals? That’s a lot of new copy. I’m going for a lie down.
More pics have been upoloaded to the melange but variety being the spice of something other I’d been working on 1969. That’s the year I bought my first bike (a 1959 Ambassador) and the year the last Panther M120s and the first Honda CB750s rolled onto British roads. Would Agostini put a movie career ahead of bikes? Would Mike the Bike really retire? It was a busy year; a batch of stories and pics are on the page now with much more to come.
Nigh on 100 more pics have been added to the melange, including lots of Indians and Harleys , one and four-pot FNs and a dozen more Great War snaps. There are getting on for 400 images to gladden your eye. Looking up dates for captions led to updated entries on the (1901) California and (1902) Bradbury. Which in turn reminded me to take another look at the (1903) feature on George Wyman, who rode/carried/dragged his California across the USA. Well worth a read. (And while you’re in the 1903 features section do take a look at the story ‘Dogs: Shoot, hang or poison?’ It says does just what it says on the packet (prussic acid, in case you were wondering).