I arrived home from work today to find a box full of old photos strewn all over the floor.
Yep, you guessed it, The Pillion got bored and was reminiscing about the old days.
While looking through the photos, she managed to fish out some memories for me to have a look at.
I haven’t seen some of these photos in 30 years and I thought I’d share them with you.
I have not included the “family vehicles” since getting married. That would be silly.
These are my “toys”.
1973, Holden LJ Torana “S” Two Door
My first car; and what a great little car it was too.
Complete with wog antenna on the roof and fat wheels. I spent thousands on this thing, rust removal, re-spray, engine and drive train rebuild and yes it was purple… actually the colour was officially called “champagne”
The last modification I did to her didn’t go so well though.
1971, Holden HQ Monaro “LS” Two Door
After writing off the Torana, I got all funny about small cars and went out and bought a Monaro. It was huge by comparison.
Again, much folding stuff was exchanged for improvements and modifications. Suspension was replaced, vinyl roof and rust was removed, the auto was ditched for a four speed manual and the 253ci donk* was replaced with a 308ci Peter Brock spec effort.
Sadly I had to sell it because The Pillion kept doing burn-outs in the Kentucky Fried Chicken car park. Something about the clutch being too heavy and the accelerator being too light?
Maybe it was the 650 double pumper spread bore Holley carby*?
I dunno, but it had to go.
1971 Honda K2 750/4
I bought this baby for $200 not long after selling the Monaro.
It came in a few milk crates and a couple of boxes and fortunately for me, it was all there, right down to the last nut and bolt.
I spent 12 months rebuilding this bike. In fact it was my first bike, and at the time I figured if I’m going to ride ’em, I better know how to fix ’em.
The best learning curve is a steep one, as they say.
In the end it had a K6 front end and the engine was massaged out to an 810cc with Arias forged pistons and an Ivan Tighe cam amongst other things.
Everything was either replaced, reconditioned, re-chromed or re-sprayed. Even the frame was powder coated.
It cost me a fortune over 12 months… but don’t tell The Pillion. I told her it was going to save us money because it was more economical than the Monaro.
1979 Kawasaki Z1R MKII (With Matching Numbers)
I spotted this bike in the process of being rebuilt.
This time it wasn’t me doing the rebuilding, but a bloke by the name of Phil who owned a motorcycle repair business in Woolloongabba QLD. He was building it up as a show piece for his shop.
After a bit of persuading on my part, and while the bike was still in bits, he let me put a deposit down on the Z.
The rest is history.
Apart from the wooden brakes, which were a combination of cable and hydraulically operated, this bike put a smile on my dial every time I rode it.
Especially on a Friday coming home over Mt Tamborine. Loved that bike.
1986 Kawasaki GPz 1000 RX
What can I say, this bike was an impulse buy and I regretted it afterwards.
I always suspected it had a bent frame and the air adjustable forks and a 16″ front wheel made the thing handle like a pig. The thing was nothing but trouble from the day I bought it.
A split fuel tank and seized engine saw to it that I would never enjoy this bike.
I hated this bike… hate, hate, vomit.
I ended up putting a stone chip into the side of a Mitsubishi Colt with it. I survived, the bike didn’t.
That’s me with the helmet on.
1996 Kawasaki ZZR-1100 (ZX-11) D4
Now this, this was a great bike.
A lot of people bagged these things for being big and cumbersome, but it suited me and my style of riding. Very forgiving and smooth power delivery (all-be-it very quickly).
This is by far the most powerful bike I have ever owned.
147 bhp may not be much by today’s standards, but back in the mid to late ’90’s, this thing was a weapon
A regrettable sale.
2012 Suzuki Bandit 1250 SA
Bluey. My current ride.
Not as powerful as the ZZR with only 100 bhp, but it suits me just fine.
I’ve put more miles on Bluey in 4 years (nearly 5 come to think of it) than I care to admit. But man I love this bike.
Sure, it’s considered by some to be an old mans bike. But in saying that, I’m old.
As you can see, I tend to keep my vehicles for a long time.
I get my moneys worth out of them. It allows me to get to know them, their idiosyncrasies, how they like to be driven or ridden. I guess this way I get to enjoy the bikes as they should be enjoyed… except the GPz, that was a pig.
I wonder what my next bike will be?
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