Et pendant ce temps, ailleurs sur la toile…

Début de semaine

Certains lundis matins sont différents des autres. Ceux qui suivent un dimanche sur les routes du Vexin pour emmener un grand groupe de passionné(e)s partageant notre énergie positive à chaque instant de ce Ride de célébration de l’arrivée du Printemps. Certes le soleil a mis du temps à percer les nuages pour nous rejoindre en milieu d’après-midi seulement, mais celui-ci était dans le coeur de chacune et de chacun. Alors, en ce lundi matin où une nouvelle semaine se présente à nous, encore embrumés des délices de la veille, notre tasse de café nous donne envie de sortir cartes et guides et de préparer de nouvelles journées sur de nouveaux itinéraires.

Très bon début de semaine à toutes et à tous !

Crédit photo inconnu

Cet article fut rédigé et publié pour la première fois sur Virage8 le 25 mars 2019

L’article Début de semaine est apparu en premier sur Virage8.

King of Cool

Harvey Mushman | today would have been Steve McQueen’s 89th Birthday.

Blue & Ice

The Cat’s Whisker | a sunny early spring day gave me an opportunity to haul the pussycat over back roads across Lake county into Wisconsin and a lap of the still frozen over Lake Geneva. New saddle was extremely comfy, new leather jeans and boots kept me cosy. A perfect flight to broom cobwebs out of the feathers.

Weekend arrival!

Friday Fun | Happy couple cavorting along under a high summer sun looking for antics and shenanigans. BSA single is the mode.
BIRD OF PRAY. Hookie’s Evil ‘Crow’ Honda CB750 Cafe Racer

Written by Martin Hodgson

In just about every ancient culture that spans the globe exists a mythology around the crow, and it almost always leads to death and destruction. So imagine yourself sitting alone in the middle of the night, stopped at a red light in the bad part of town, when as if from nowhere this blacked out harbinger of death rolls up beside you. Lean, mean and snarling through its pipes, comes this blacked-out beast from Dresden’s Hookie Co. A ’91 Honda CB750 that’ll drag you down the road and rip your eyeballs from your skull, this ‘Crow’ is ready to ask, for whom the bell tolls…

But that’s where the dark and disturbing part of this story ends for now. Walk into Hookie Co. and you’re greeted by owners Nico Mueller and Sylvia Petrasch, who surrounded by incredible custom bikes will offer you the perfect coffee from the in-house cafe, a beautiful couch to sit on and even the password for the WiFi. Think of it as Starbucks for the motorcycle lover, except the coffee is perfect, you’re served with a smile and a chat about their latest tyre shredding ideas – so really nothing like Starbucks at all.

But the cafe is just to create a nice environment and keep everyone smiling, the bread and butter is bikes and a new project needed to be found. What Nico stumbled across while searching the internet was a 1981 Honda CB750, perfect given Hookie’s in-house catalogue of parts they produce for the model. The only problem was the Honda was a wreck, it also didn’t run as the engine was a total basket case and it looked as ugly as sin with someone having given it their own Salvador Dali version of a makeover.

But for the talented team from Dresden this was never a concern, no bike leaves their shop without a complete and thorough health check, so it was up on to the operating table and down to work. The engine was pulled from the Honda and set aside, before every other part is disassembled, inspected and marked for later use. “After that part I go straight to the fab time and modify the frame, tank and tail,” Nico explains. Every weld on the frame is checked, re-done if necessary, with excess tabs removed and the whole thing smoothed out.

Next the tank is attacked with the grinder as Hookie like to give a more flowing effect to the otherwise boxy item. Subtle changes give the Honda unit a more rounded appearance, with soft transitions to the knee dents and the side mounts removed. Working further back the entire subframe is cut off and an all new item shaped to suit. From the centre post back, it’s all handcrafted, clean straight lines create a crisp finish and the tail is given an up kick and rounded off to finish.

Now the team can go to their in-house supply of off the shelf parts they create for the Honda CB750 market; with a new kit also on the way for the BMW R nineT. You can either buy it piece by piece or as a kit and of course Nico threw the lot at this build. Hookie’s own electronics tray, rear loop, battery box and stunning ‘hawk tail’ rear cowl all get the call up and bolted into place. With the fabrication work complete the bike is once again broken down and parts sent out to paint and powder, while the mechanicals get an overhaul.

To make a perfect runner from the old wreck, the engine has been broken down to every last nut and bolt and given a full rebuild. Blacked out cases, barrels and heads swing a new set of slugs with a gasket and seal kit returning things to new. The full bank of rebuilt Keihin carbs bolt up with new mounts and draw air from the atmosphere via a set of pod filters. But the real roar comes from the Spark Performance exhaust that Hookie favour for its genuine horsepower boost.

With the big jobs complete the final assembly begins by turning the Honda into a rolling chassis and rebuilt factory forks are slotted into the trees. The wiring loom is run down the back bone and through the new clip-ons that allow for Motogadget switchgear and bar end indicators to fire to life. A classic styled headlight with flush fit LED gives the symmetry of old with a much cleaner look while the analog Motoscope speedo is all class. At the rear things are kept simple and sleek with a single LED light assembly and Progressive shocks for the perfect ride.

“The gloss black paint requires you look closely to truly appreciate, while the subtle details in the feathers come from a true artist’s touch.”

But it’s the final pieces to the puzzle that really catch the eye. The depth and quality of the gloss black paint requires you look closely to truly appreciate, while the subtle details in the feathers come from a true artist’s touch. The same quality paint work goes on the rear cowl, with flat black powder on the rest of the metal and more black on the seat with the Porsche grade Alcantara. Nico and the team couldn’t be happier with the end result and in case you think you’re safe in that bad part of town, the new owner is a rather large chap covered in ‘Crow’ tattoos… the bells toll for thee!

Hookie Co. – Facebook – Instagram | Photos by David Ohl ]

Thinkin’ ’bout the times you drove in my car.

Badge | The story goes that when Eric Clapton was putting the finishing touches to a George Harrison written piece he thought the middle bridge was labeled ‘Badge’ hence the Cream song got its name. George played backing guitar under the name “L’Angelo Misterioso”. This bikers vest is covered in Triumph embroidered patch badges.

Moto Lady
Motorcycle Missions + MotoLady (video)

Check out the Motorcycle Missions + MotoLady interview video and photo gallery by Dalton Campbell!

Motorcycle Missions is a non-profit organization started by my friend Krystal Hess. Their modus operandi is helping Veterans and First Responders with PTS(D) through motorcycle therapy.

From the website–

We are a 501(c)3 Non-Profit Corporation helping Veterans and First Responders with PTS(D) find hope and healing through motorcycle therapy.

At Motorcycle Missions we understand that much of the post traumatic stress (disorder) paradigm is that the need for purpose, camaraderie, and adrenaline is of the utmost importance. Our hope is to encourage our participants to instill a life-long passion for riding and building motorcycles, that will help them enjoy a happy, healthy, and balanced lifestyle after trauma.

Krystal Hess is the real deal; a Nurse, Powdercoater, and all around badass. She brought the very talented Dalton Campbell along with her from Texas to the West Coast for filming and photos! We had a fun day riding together up the 101 chasing the sunset, Krystal on her Suzuki Savage 650 “Spinderella” and me on the 2016 Yamaha FZ09.

In the video we talk about riding keeping my busy brain quiet, leathercraft to stay away from idle hands, and of course… motorcycles.

Check out the photo gallery from Dalton Campbell below! And if you want to support Motorcycle Missions, you can donate through the website here. Additionally, if you’re in Southern California, check out the Doffo + Motorcycle Missions event on March 31!


more: from the blog | charity

The post Motorcycle Missions + MotoLady (video) appeared first on Moto Lady.

L’Alpine Classique 2019

L’Alpine Classique est un évènement unique en son genre, organisé par nos amis de Piece of Chic, qui rassemble chaque année des centaines de passionnés de vieilles mécaniques (auto, moto, scooter) et de ski vintage.

Rendez-vous donc ce week-end à Chamrousse pour revivre l’histoire des sports d’hiver depuis les premières traces hésitantes des pionniers des années 30, jusqu’au style plus moderniste et affûté de la fin des années 60.

Le programme commencera dès vendredi 22 mars à 18h30 avec l’accueil au Village. Les grands moments de ce week-end de passion mécanique et de glisse seront :

Le Slalom vintage et le Concours d’Elégance télémark samedi 23 mars de 15h00 à 16h00

Le moment épique de la manifestion. Les plus téméraires s’affronteront dans un slalom réservé uniquement aux skieurs habillés et équipés d’un matériel datant avant 1960.
2 catégories sont ouvertes :

« Skineandertals » pour les skieurs avec tenues et matériels années 30-40 : chaussures en cuir à lacets, fixations à cables et lanières, skis en bois profilés (carres mais sans semelle)

« Skities » pour les skieurs avec tenues et matériels des années 50-60 : chaussures cuir à crochets, skis stratifiés, fixations à cables avec butées avant.

Pour les spectateurs apportez vos cloches pour encourager les vedettes.

Le Concert, dîner et bal swing samedi 23 mars à partir de 20h00

Dans la salle située sous l’office du tourisme de Chamrousse 1650 (Le Recoin), la soirée débutera dès 20h par un dîner préparé par les amis du bouchon lyonnais « Le Loup Pendu ».  Pour dîner il est impératif de réserver votre place en envoyant une demande par email à

Le diner sera ensuite suivi d’un concert du groupe allemand de Yukulele « Bad Mouse Orchestra ».

Le rassemblement Auto et Moto dimanche 24 mars matin pour une balade sur les routes d’accès à Chamrousse

Avec un tel programme, de vieilles mécaniques (auto, moto, scooter) et de ski vintage, l’Alpine Classique promet à tous les amateurs un week-end inoubliable dans la station de Chamrousse (38).

Crédit photos Alpine Classique

Cet article fut rédigé et publié pour la première fois sur Virage8 le 21 mars 2019

L’article L’Alpine Classique 2019 est apparu en premier sur Virage8.
WERKING CLASS. Schlachtwerk’s Kawasaki W650 Racer

Written by Marlon Slack

Schlachtwerk’s Tommy Thöring is obsessed with the Kawasaki W650. As everyone should be. They’re dead reliable, have handling so neutral it could be described as ‘Swiss’ and look more like a Triumph than a Triumph could ever hope to. If you’re in Germany and you own a Dub you want chopped into something special, it’s Schlachtwerk’s number you’d be punching in your phone. And here’s a great example as to why – their latest creation built around a 2000 Kawasaki W650 dubbed the ‘Silver Racer.’

“The blokes who want to ride a custom-built W650 or W800 in Germany usually find their way to Schlachtwerk HQ,” Tommy laughs. And they should. He’s got a long-standing reputation for building gorgeous, highly-tuned takes on Kawasaki’s modern classic. Some, like the W650 drag racer he built for Sultans of Sprint are off-the-charts insane. But the Silver Racer is a more restrained, practicable bike than that. Which is what Tommy loves to create.

“We specialise in building lightweight, classic looking bikes,” Tommy says. “I build them because I love riding a nice and vintage-looking motorcycle but hate old bikes that are really wobbly through corners, can’t break properly, have weak engines and are as heavy as a cruise ship.” In case you were wondering, a quick scan through Schlachtwerk’s back catalogue shows no Harley Sportsters.

Curiously, Tommy’s inspiration for the Silver Racer was a cancelled project, an idea for a rolling chassis for a very special W650 engine. It was going to be the biggest one ever created – all 1200cc’s of bevel-driven insanity. The customer never quite finished the engine, so Tommy was left with a whole bunch of neat ideas bouncing around inside his head.

“The customer wanted a lightweight, classic racer with a moderate seating position and reliable enough for everyday use.”

That proved fortuitous when a customer approached Schlachtwerk with a very particular set of wants. It damn near married up perfectly with his plans for the W1200. The customer wanted forged wheels, proper brakes, a lightweight swingarm, fully adjustable forks and a 2 into 1 exhaust system. The brief was perfect for Tommy. “The customer wanted a lightweight, classic racer with a moderate seating position and reliable enough for everyday use,” he recalls.

Clean. Simple. Perfect

“The process of building a bike isn’t really that complicated,” Herr Thöring explains. “Find a bike, take off all the useless parts and take a look at what’s left.” It sounds easy when he puts it that way. It’s the bike version of a guide to playing the piano that says ‘just press the right keys at the right time’. He’s right, but he’s simplifying things more than a bit.

Being a man of few words and in the midst of a move to Australia (lucky us!) leaves fellow W650 addicts picking through the finer points of the Silver Racer, with precise details being thin on the ground. The frame’s been trimmed and refinished, the engine painted and electronics squirreled away. There’s a custom swingarm and a stripped-back wiring loom. The bike runs YSS rear shocks and 43mm fully adjustable conventional forks into CNC triple trees.

Engine wise, there’s nothing as spectacular as a beefed up 1200cc engine, but the tidy two into one exhaust, pod filters and a bit of carb tuning on the dyno has it putting out 58 horses. And hell, why mess with the engine? I said before they’re reliable and I mean it – in near-standard trim, one fella in Japan just clicked over two hundred and forty thousand miles on his.

Tommy makes all this look easy. “My favourite parts are the suspension, brakes and the natural beauty of the engine,” he says. “I like simple solutions which work properly. I want to build bikes for riding, not for exhibition. And this one looks like a racer and brakes and corners like one too!” Here’s to more bikes on Pipeburn that fit that brief – and as Tommy starts to settle into his new life in Australia, we can’t wait to see what he turns out next.

“Hallo Herr Hund…”

Schlachtwerk – Facebook – Instagram | Photos by Christine Gabler ]

Got Air?

‘Ump Day | It can be a tricky maneuver to maintain momentum one gains from the first half of the week to establish a decent and stable toehold into the latter half. Given a positive attitude, and topography like a hump-back bridge, one can achieve this translation with assured aplomb. Take this cove on his rigid framed Triumph; he certainly has a serious head on his shoulders, along with an appropriate cool appearance to maintain the professional air about his seemed flawless leap. He’s even smart enough to take on Ballaugh Bridge, the notorious Isle of Man TT circuit to sustain a level of grace and composure for this Wednesday transition.
QUICK SILVER. Stephen Brisken’s Ducati 900 SS Cafe

Written by Andrew Jones

How many 21-year-olds do you know with a killer workshop and an amazing bike collection? The answer is probably zero. That’s because – unlike other things in life – getting older seems to be a distinct benefit in the bike scene. With no more kids, years of riding experience under your belt and the mortgage paid off, many of us find ourselves in a position where those dream bikes we’ve always wanted are finally within reach. Not only that, but you also have the time to actually work on the damn things. California’s Stephen Brisken knows just what we mean and this very shiny Ducati 900 Super Sport is one massive testament to it.

“I am a retired guy with lots of time to waste building custom bikes and maintaining a small collection,” says the very lucky Stephen from his newly minted man cave. “My shop is part of a large metal barn. I have been able to insulate, drywall and heat a good portion of the space. The shop is divided into two areas. One is for the messy work of cutting, grinding, polishing and the like. The other area is closed off from the first and is my assembly area with two bike lifts and hand tools.” And what you’re looking at right now is the latest progeny of this very cool little set-up; a ‘97 Ducati 900 SS fared cafe which Steve calls ‘The 900’.

Mmmm – so chromey

Steve purchased the bike through Craigslist from a track day rider in Southern California who was looking to upgrade to a finer example of the same model. “It was perfect for me; I purchased it through photos and phone conversations without actually seeing it in person and unbelievably, it was just as described and completely disappointment free.” Thank you, human race.

“I purchased it through photos and phone conversations without actually seeing it in person and unbelievably, it was just as described.”

“Once I settled on the 900SS Ducati as a basis for the build I spent a bunch of time scouring the web for photos of other customs using the same starting point. I came across a few bikes that stood out. What they had in common was a very straight-line layout of the frame, seat, tank and fairing.” One of the bikes Steve found was built by Revival Cycles in 2015 using a 1997 Ducati 900SS, called ‘J63.’ From memory, they used their own custom frame with the engine from the old Ducati and – as Steve correctly points out – it was straighter than an arrow from the gods.

Steve makes a cameo appearance in the tail section

Next, the bike was stripped down to the frame, motor and running gear, with Steve modifying the trellis in preparation for the new body work. “The bike was delivered to Evan Wilcox, an amazing West Coast metal worker, for the hand-made aluminum fairing, tank, seat and fender. When I got it back, I tore it down to the bare frame. All unnecessary brackets and tabs were removed and the frame was smoothed. Then new brackets were added where needed and the frame was powder coated. All the other parts were re-anodized, polished, painted or replaced, including the fasteners.”

At this point that lovely Italian motor was removed and the top end was professionally modified by Jason Koschnitzke at VR Garage with enlarged cylinders, high-compression pistons, oversize valves, performance cams and a port and polish of the heads. If a job’s worth doing… “Once the engine was back in the frame, assembly began,” continues Stephen. “An enlarged exhaust and flat slide carbs were mounted on to short manifolds. Almost all of the components were upgraded from stock including the hand controls, triple clamps, wheels, suspension, electrical and ignition system, lighting…” And by all accounts, once they got the carbs dialed in, the bike took on a whole new demeanor. “It is fast and really fun to ride,” says Steve with a broad smile on his dial.

Patience is definitely a big part of custom work when you need help from others, as Steven found out. “The most difficult part of the build was organizing the various outsourced tasks and components to keep the project from stalling. Waiting for parts or outside processes to be completed and delivered would stop progress for weeks at times. I tried to keep a balance between urging shops to make it happen and letting them work without interference. During the wait, I sourced obscure parts and polished everything stainless or aluminum.”

“I had decided on many of the components before starting, but I didn’t know if they would make a cohesive-looking and performing machine. Of course, there were parts that didn’t give the desired look or function and needed to be replaced. This included the rear-sets, grips, electrical components and some color combinations. In the end the best part of the finished bike was seeing it all come together in what is, for me, a very good-looking and functioning machine.” Believe us, Stephen; it’s not just you that thinks that. Not by a long stretch.

The Ducati and her little sister at The One Moto Show. Watch this space…

[ Stephen Brisken ]



Très jeune, il aimait se balader dans le garage paternel où trônaient des engins à deux et à quatre roues plus excitants les uns que les autres. Son jeune âge ne lui permettait pas de les conduire mais déjà il se disait que la croissance aidant, il arriverai un jour où enfin il pourrait chevaucher un de ses engins à deux roues, voire de piloter un de ceux à quatre roues.

Alors, il se consolait en pilotant son tricycle à la position très motardesque quand bien même les pédales qu’il devait actionner pour avancer le ramenaient à sa condition d’enfant. Plus tard, il appris à lire puis compris la signification des ces signes peints sur les murs du garage. La vie est une tartine de miel ou une tartine de m… selon son propre choix. Selon ce que l’on décide d’en faire.

Il décida de la considérer en tartine de miel et elle le fut.

Crédit photo inconnu

Cet article fut rédigé et publié pour la première fois sur Virage8 le 20 mars 2019

L’article Mercredi est apparu en premier sur Virage8.


Royal Flying Corps | A despatch rider in the Women’s Royal Air Force (WRAF) enjoying a tea break while seated on her Phelon & Moore 500cc single cylinder motorcycle circa 1918. On 1 April of that year the Royal Flying Corps and Royal Naval Air Service were amalgamated to become a new service: The Royal Air Force (RAF). Image from the archives of the Imperial War Museum

Un pneu dans la tombe
MêchesMonkeys Créations : une BMW R60/7 façon steampunk…

MêchesMonkeys Créations : une BMW R60/7 façon steampunk...

N’y voyez surtout pas le fantasme de l’homme, mais plutôt si vous voulez, comment dire ? La recherche créative, le délire de l’artiste… Une BMW R60/7 façon steampunk. Et « Pafff » ! Ames sensibles, s’abstenir. Esprits étroits, puristes fermés, faîtes de même. Mesdames et messieurs, voici sous vos yeux ébahis… L’étrange « Pafff » ! Une BMW R60/7 […]

L’article MêchesMonkeys Créations : une BMW R60/7 façon steampunk… est apparu en premier sur Un pneu dans la tombe.

El Solitario MC

This short documentary is about Mike Duff, a Canadian motorcycle racer, and the sport that almost killed him. After a near-fatal crash in Japan and extensive surgery and therapy, Duff returned to racing to claim two victories in Canadian races. Though the sport takes its toll on the lives of his friends and fellow competitors annually, the racer explains he can’t give up just yet – not before winning a world championship.

Her best season was in 1965 when she won the 250cc Finnish Grand Prix and finished the year in second place to Phil Read. Following sex reassignment surgery, the now called Michelle Duff, wrote about her life as a trans woman in Make Haste, Slowly: The Mike Duff story, certainly one of motorcycle history’s most unusual stories.
Animal Farm. Purpose Built Moto’s Yamaha XT250 MX Scrambler

Written by Tom Gilroy

When you mention a Yamaha XT to any bike enthusiast a few things come to mind. Yamaha’s XT series set the bar in off-road racing for a long time, and since then they’ve been synonymous with durability, performance and reliability. So of course, I have one rolled into the garage that looks anything but. Ex-farm bike. Rolling chassis, motor, box of parts and three words, “Make a scrambler.”

The easy route would have been to mount a nice, rounded fender and a run-of-the-mill round tail light with roll-stitched seat – probably lower it so it looked nicer – throw some 50/50 tyres on and be done with it. But I don’t tend to take the easy way out and the Yamaha XT250 MX scrambler wouldn’t be any different. Why not build a custom motocross bike? I couldn’t think of a good enough reason, so that’s exactly what I did.

The tear down was simple; I think the only thing I removed was the old front fender. The rest was already missing. The light frame plus the monoshock of the XT250 lends itself to a simple design. The top seat rail was maintained with the bracing modified to better suit my ideas for the tail and exhaust. Next, I dropped the forks through the triple clamps to sit nice and high on the front and modified the rear suspension to suit. Overall, I lifted the little Yamaha about 35mm.

Stand up and be counted

The wheels were stripped out, the rims were polished up and re-laced with stainless steel spokes. They were then wrapped in a Dunlop K606 off-road tyre with a 17″ rear and a 21″ front. Once the bike was back on its own two feet, the exhaust was fabricated. A stainless steel header was put together piece by piece and finished off with a modified FMF Powercore 4 muffler. The muffler was cut and shut outside and in, and the link pipe was fabricated to snake inside the subframe. This is one of my favourite little details and I think it looks pretty trick.

Taking further styling cues from the motocross bikes I grew up on, I went about hand-making an aluminium fender to finish off the rear of the bike. Built to house an LED brake light and a minimal mud guard, the tail-piece was shaped and welded to accentuate the bare knuckles, off-road feel of the project. An important detail for me here was the opposing angles of the muffler and rear fender from the side; them crossing over each other just slightly is something you’ll often see on 4-stroke motocross and enduro bikes, and something that I always liked the look of.

Completely hidden under the seat, the electrics on this bike are fairly minimal. A 12-volt conversion was needed, with the addition of an Antigravity Battery. There’s no starter motor and the lighting circuits were further simplified with the use of the Purpose Built Moto Black Box control module. It also has a kill switch circuit and it takes care of pretty much everything electrical. It was then run through a set of push-button switches on the handlebars, which delivers a super clean finish.

The XT250 scrambler bars are a Renthal low-rise MX units with standard levers, pro-grip grips, and some custom scrambler mirrors that you can learn how to make here. Staying on the front of the bike, a universal super motard fender was fitted over the 21″ front wheel and a custom aluminium front plate was built to house two LED bar lights plus some of our hollow-tip LED turn signals. The headlight mounting plate was finished with some stainless steel brush guards, which I now know – thanks to Bruce at Iron & Resin Garage – look like a set of kitchen drawer handles! Fuck. I guess these things happen when you spend your life in a garage isolated from the outside world. The digital gauge mounted off the top triple clamp is a Koso enduro style dash, with warning lights and a built-in tacho.

“Everytime someone paints the inside of their carburettor, a motorcyclist buys a step-through scooter. And nobody wants to see that.”

With the styling all but sorted the motor was dropped out, cleaned up and a new clutch put in to handle the mighty 13.5 horses this ball-tearer was putting out. The carb and intake were also upgraded with a Mikuni flat slide carburettor and DNA air filter was put on. When re-building the carburettor I was shocked to see someone had painted INSIDE the intake. Yep, some 100% A-grade matte black was used to make sure the carburettor was blacked out. For those playing along at home, don’t paint the inside of your carburettor. Every time someone paints the inside of their carburettor, a motorcyclist buys a step-through scooter. And nobody wants to see that. Once wired up and firing, the XT250 was serviced and tuned on the dyno by an old mate of mine – Jamie at Dynomite Moto in Brisbane.

‘Screw this. I’m gonna write for Pipeburn full-time!’

The one thing that was retained on the XT from the factory was the tank. One of the last tin tanks on these bikes, the white, yellow and grey combo was too good to change. A set of reproduction factory decals were painted in with the new fenders and hand-made guards were sprayed to suit. The custom MX-style bar seat was finished and upholstered by Jamason from Timeless Autotrim (we share a shop) with some grey and yellow accent pieces.

From where the Yamaha XT250 MX scrambler is now, you would never think it was a once neglected and mistreated farm bike. As with all scramblers, you know you’ve done a good job when they look good clean, but even better dirty. Test riding this bike on a farm property with a few gravel roads and mud puddles soon proved my assumption was right. A motocross-inspired custom scrambler would be a shitload of fun. Box ticked, and onto the next build.

Purpose Built Moto – Facebook – Instagram – Store | Photos by Andy Jackman ]

Trouble Starter

Firestarter | Woke up to the sad news that The Prodigy frontman Keith Flint died over the weekend. If you were at a rave in the mid to late nineties you will have danced to their music. Fluorescent hair and wide-eyed he was the vision of a Century making a last gasp for excitement. He was also an avid motorcyclist to the point that he owned a race team – Team Traction Control – who, with Ian Hutchinson on a Yamaha R6, grabbed some wins at IofM and the Ulster GP. A lot of people said he was a friendly down to earth bloke. Sad day. RIP Keith Flint (1969-2010)


Saddle Up! | here’s the new perch on the Tiger. Like a BarcaLounger it creates a comfy place to enjoy the long road from. Dense foam concave shaped padding support the gluteus maximus as the miles accumulate under wheel.

Début de semaine

Un week-end à la météo en plein progrès, des essais de moto, une balade en cabriolet, une descente en long board sous le soleil de la Méditerranée, une balade entre potes, de quoi était fait votre week-end? La semaine s’annonce changeante du côté de la météo, baisse des températures, quelques retours en arrière et puis un nouveau week-end plein à la météo très alléchante. Ça tombe bien, notre Spring Ride prévu dimanche prochain est complet de chez complet. Vous avez dit géant ?

Excellent début de semaine à toutes et à tous !


Crédit photo inconnu

Cet article fut rédigé et publié pour la première fois sur Virage8 le 18 mars 2019

L’article Début de semaine est apparu en premier sur Virage8.

Lakeside Livin’

Saddle Up! | I recently acquired a Corbin seat for the Tiger and after putting it on the bike went for a very brief spin down to the lake. Firm and comfy. Should make longer trips bearable for the butt.

The luck o’ the Irish

Sergeant Murphy | the stereotypical Irish American Motorcycle cop from the imaginative busy busy world of Richard Scarry was always zooming around on his red bike wearing a white crash helmet ‘lid’. I grew up with these books with a diverse animal citizenry. Happy St Patrick’s Day! The Chicago River is green here in the Windy City.
JEWEL, BRITANNIA. Old Empire’s ‘Gypsy’ Honda CB360 Cafe Racer

Written by Marlon Slack

When you’re as good as Norfolk’s Old Empire Motorcycles you don’t need to go hunting for work. Hell, their incredible history of customising classic motorcycles has customers practically begging them to create a bike. And that’s what’s happened with their latest creation, a 1976 Honda CB360 that the client had to harass, harangue and coerce them into building. And we’re all the better for it.

The customer initially approached the team after ogling one of their first custom jobs, a killer little Vulcan CB250. Old Empire, snowed under with work, had to politely decline another project. But the customer wasn’t one to take no for an answer. He disappeared into the ether and started squirreling away parts for the bike he envisioned. A donor motorcycle. Aprilia RS125 forks. And then a year later he struck again. Thankfully for us all they took on the build.

And it was an interesting time for the team, with the customer so smitten with their original CB250 it gave Empire’s Rafe and Alec a chance to reassess their original build. “As with anything we’ve completed, once it’s done we always look back and wish we had changed this or that or done something differently,” Alec says. “In this case we had a look at what we disliked about the Vulcan. It wasn’t much, but there were some small things.”

“First was the stance,” Alec says, “It was too high at the front. So the first thing we did was shave an inch of the Aprilia forks and lowered the top yoke right down onto the headstock. Secondly was the tank. She always did need a diet up top, so on the Gypsy the tank was carefully narrowed, angled and tapered to get the right profile.”

Don’t just stand there… ride the thing!

Lastly, the team decided the initial engine lacked a bit of chutzpah, so they imported a 360cc engine from the States along with some fresh Mikuni VM carbs. Sorted, right? Well, not quite. “The fun began when we found out the engine actually needed a full rebore and rebuild,” Alec says. The engine was given a thorough going-over by local engine guru Willy Valentine. Some soda blasting and a repaint and it was good to go. But that’s fairly straightforward when you take a look at the work they did on the frame.

“The team decided the initial engine lacked a bit of chutzpah, so they imported a 360cc engine from the States.”

It was cut and shortened, with a new tighter loop installed at the rear, complete with brake lights and new rear shock mounts. In one of the tidiest bits of lighting trickery we’ve seen in a long time the indicators, an Old Empire designed item, are mounted on top of the shock mounts. They perfectly match the indicators at the front – they’re actually attached to the pinch bolts on the bottom yoke. How neat is that?

“Wheel wise we re-laced the original hubs to 19″ stainless rims,” Alec says. “We shod them in maybe not the most well performing tyres but that certainly looked the part.” New brake discs and a CNC adapter plate was made up by Demeanour Customs to get the front stopper working correctly.

The understated metallic paintwork reeks of class

Up top things are particularly neat. A small aluminium cowl was crafted around the triangular headlight, and underneath that Old Empire controls and Kustom Tech levers were fitted to the clip-ons. The Gypsy is outfitted with a whole new charging and ignition system, Shorai battery and Motogadget wizardry, all held together in one of the neatest looms ever, constructed by Richard at the Motorcycle Wiring Specialists.

There’s a whole lot more going on with this bike. The leather grips and footpegs made by Old Empire. The hand-stitched seat made by GB Upholstery. The glorious paintwork done by Black Shuck. Ceracoating by Flying Tiger Coatings. Hell, even the customer-made saddlebags are jaw-dropping. It all rewards a close look. And if the photos aren’t enough, check out the kick ass video the team produced.

For all his dedication and persistence – we can’t thank the customer enough!

Old Empire Motorcycles – Facebook – Instagram | Photos by Rafe Pugh ]

Normandie, We love, 30 Mai au 2 Juin 2019

Nous vous proposons un week-end de l’Ascension sur les routes de la Normandie que nous aimons. Une Normandie que nous découvrirons en formule allégée de nos bagages que nous laisserons à notre hôtel-base à quelque 120 km de Paris. Quatre jours pour rayonner en pétale depuis notre hôtel-base vers la Suisse Normande, le Pays d’Auge et le Perche. Trois hauts lieux de cette superbe région française.

Ouvert à toutes les motos et autos de caractère quel que soit leur âge pour autant que leur état permette un voyage sans encombre.

Chacun roulera à son rythme, lent, moyen ou rapide, en fonction de ses préférences. Nous nous regrouperons au fil de la route pour partager nos impressions. 


Mercredi 29 mai, rendez-vous en fin de journée à notre hôtel-base spécialement réservé pour nous. Un pré-départ pourra être organisé depuis Paris pour celles et ceux qui souhaitent rouler en groupe dès le début de notre week-end. 

Jeudi 30 mai, départ juste après le petit-déjeuner en direction de la Suisse Normande, ses routes au dénivelés changeants, ses paysages enchanteurs, qui nous feront comprendre assez rapidement la référence Helvétique de cette partie de la Normandie.  

Vendredi 31 mai, direction le Pays d’Auge, ses paysages de bocages, avec un petit détour vers la côte normande à l’heure du déjeuner, haut lieu symbolique de la liberté que nous chérissons tant.

Samedi 1er juin, le Perche, la Normandie plus authentique encore avec ses routes plus roulantes, ses prés et quelques surprise comme le château de La Ferté Vidame ou la Chapelle Montligeon, magnifique basilique plantée au milieu des prés.

Dimanche 2 juin, retour vers Paris et la région parisienne par les petites routes avec une arrivée en débuts d’après-midi pour éviter les embouteillages de retour de ce long week-end.

Prix: 280€ pour une chambre double (lits double ou twin), 380€ pour une chambre double en catégorie supérieure (lits double ou twin), comprenant le guide, 4 nuits d’hôtels 3 et 4 étoile, chambres en utilisation single ou double. Ne sont pas compris les petits-déjeuners, les déjeuners et dîners, les entrées des musées, le carburant, les péages, les extras et dépenses personnelles.

Réservation obligatoire avant le 15 mai 2019 :

Conditions de remboursement en cas d’annulation :
14 jours et plus avant la date de départ du voyage : 100%
Entre 7 jours et 13 jours avant la date de départ du voyage : 50%
6 jours et moins avant la date de départ du voyage : pas de remboursement
Toute annulation doit être notifiée par email ( impérativement

Attention: Nombre de places limité

Ça va être géant !


L’article Normandie, We love, 30 Mai au 2 Juin 2019 est apparu en premier sur Virage8.