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I was 12 and found the frame in a vacant lot - talked a neighbor out of his old lawn mower and I had an engine. I was not educated on a clutch so when I came to a stop sign I had to jump off and hold the rear wheel off the ground. This photo is a "Pretty" version of mine - they were called Doodle-Bugs. Then I went to a moped and then at age 14 a 500cc BSA that broke daily.

Rik DOODLE.jpg
 

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This isn't mine - I don't have any pics of it... ;( But a Yamaha 60 was my first bike - I think I was 13... 2 cycle and didn't run for chit. I didn't know how to work on it and my Dad was always busy... but it was fun when it ran!



I remember my spoiled neighbor that was a year older than me - had to go out and get a Yam 80 to show me up. His last name was "Tendick" - no lie.
 

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Up and down in cc's first bike - 79 GS550 (fun midsize bike). Felt like it had more power than the advertised 49hp but I was a total noob to bikes at that point. My dad might have some pics of me on it but not digital mid 90's.
1979_GS550L_blue_480.jpg

Next was the GSX1200F otherwise known as Bandit. Whew, alot more horses and torque to say the least. Never got caughtdoing more that the speed limit. For me it was exhileratingly fast but always felt too loose in the corners (Suzy are of course notorious for being undersprung). It was a beautiful piece of work but HEAVY for my taste 550lb dry I think. It also got about 30mpg on a good day. Of course no pics available of me on this one either.
bandit.jpg

Now some 8 years later, I've decided that lighter, easy to throw around, great gas mileage, goofy good looks, and a beautiful fat rear end piqued my interest. Thanks to this awful site, I became infatuated with the TW and had to get one. Mine's bone stock for however long my finances force me to keep it that way. Of the three bikes I've owned, this ones a keeper for sure. I may add others to the stable eventually but she's not going anywhere if I have something to say about it.
 

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I started out with riding a friends mini bike, I think it was a Rupp or a Montgomery Wards or something like that. I also had a friend who had a Honda 50 which I loved riding. I think it was the Honda that gave me that first sense of freedom and with the wind blowing in my hair (25 mph felt like I was going a 100) back then, it was a real adrenaline rush to a kid for sure. I was 12 or 13 then and after going home would dream about motorcycles. I really loved them and wanted one so bad.

I had one incident in which my father was not pleased with me at all. I was hanging out with my friends at the schoolgrounds one weekend, just messing around, typically up to no good and one of our friends showed up with his new bike that his Dad had got him. He wasn't supposed to have it out at all without his Dad, but had snuck it out and drove by to show it off to us. We were all out on the baseball field and after begging and begging to ride it and sharing with him my vast (ha ha) experience, he reluctantly let me climb aboard it. It was a new bike, so shiny and cool looking. I think it was a Yamaha in the 80-125cc range, I don't really remember, it was a long long long time ago.

Anyway, after driving it around the field for a minute or two, someone suggested I jump it off the pitchers mound. Great Idea! (I thought)....so.... I drove it out a bit in the field, hit the throttle and headed for the mound. I went flying off the mound probably doing all of about 20-25 mph and suddenly realized that I was headed straight for the backboard. I remember this sinking feeling knowing I was going to crash into it, so laid it down and fell off the bike. The bike continued on, crashing into the backboard and bouncing off (I can still see the whole thing in my head, even though it was almost 50 years ago). Although I tried to convince the guy that his bike was ok, it wasn't. The shifter had punched a hole in the case, oil was leaking everywhere, the handlebars were bent sideways and the mirror was sheared off. He pushed it home, oil leaking all the way with parts dangleing and hanging off the bike. I knew I was going to be in a world of s**t when Dad found out. Well sure enough, my friend and his Dad showed up at the house a couple of hours later. I hadn't said a word to my Dad hoping the whole thing would just go away...and I wouldn't get in any trouble. It took a few months of my hard earned paper route money to pay for it and my friends Dad wouldn't let him hang around with me anymore..ha ha, wonder why?

By the time I was 14, my dream bike was a Triumph 650 Bonneville. I had a poster of one in my room and stared at it daily and dreamed of having one someday. I was still delivering the morning paper and noticed a guy who lived 3 doors down the street from us who had one in his garage. I stopped one day and asked him about it. He was in the military and was getting shipped out and wanted to sell it!!!!!!! WOW!!!!! It wasn't a 650, but was a vintage 57 hardtail 500 in cherry condition. Hey..good enough, right? I asked him how much he wanted for it, figuring I might be able to get it since I was going to get my license in another year and a half. He was selling the bike, two helmets, leather jackets and two toolboxes of tools and was asking 85 bucks for the whole works, believe it or not! I went home as fast as I could thinking about how I might obtain this deal of a lifetime bike. I guess I could live with a 500, if I had too, ha ha. I remember going home, being a real good boy and cutting the yard without being asked or pleaded with. Then, casually mentioning to Dad this bike I had found and what a good deal it was and that I should get it before it's gone,...bla bla bla...and that I would soon have my license, bla bla bla...that I could park it in the garage and not ride it till then...bla bla bla...hoping within, that good ol Dad would see my wisdom in getting it now before its too late.

Well....
Dad said No and that was it. No amount of begging, pleading, crying or falling on the floor kicking my feet and pitching a fit would help either. I suppose there was wisdom in his saying no, but I didn't forgive him for a long time for that one. Yeah, I know, I probably would have killed myself on it for sure.

** I got even with Dad later when I stole 2 Zildjian Cymbals and a Samuri Sword that he had brought back from WW2 from him and traded them for 2 hours of riding time on a friends 125.

And....
I still dream of riding motorcycles...;)

** Next bike, I'm gettin me one of these!

 

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It was 1966. I was 15 years old............ I was in the house when my dad opened the door and signaled to come out...... "WOW" There sat a brand new yammie twin-jet 100cc mini hot rod. I only drove it from my house to the circle drive of the lake 1/4 mile away. I put on 3,000 miles that summer. When I turned 16 I bought a new 1967 305cc yammie.. Put on 30,000+ miles on it.. Bought a 1973 TX 500cc yammie and put 35,000 miles on it.. Next came my first touring style bike. A 1977 XS 750 yammie. Put 35,000 miles on it.. Now came my favorite bike. A seca 750, put 53,000 miles on it.. Now came my dub. 2006 that I still ride. 11,500 miles so far.. Last but not least my 2009 triumph america now with 16,000 miles.. OMM.
 

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Brian...Give ya 50 bucks for the ol panhead...snicker snicker he he
 
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I kinda do like those old ones Brian, but you always had to be tightening stuff up all the time and tinkering with it, didn't you? I bet you wish you still had it now, you looked good on it. Sweet ride. ;)
 
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i haven't found pics of my first two bikes: a blue '69 z50, a '68 ct90,
but heres my '78 yamaha dt175 (the feather river, quincy ca. circa 1985)

(i wish i had never sold my mongoose bmx!)

and my '77 it175 (eagle lake, ca. circa 1987)



after i had an honda xr350... fast forward nearly 20 yrs and now back to my current stable of a '79 ct90 and my t-dub
 

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It started here for me, a Sears Mini bike.
 

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That's funny ya ol geezer! (older than I thought) :)
Cool Chopper!
 
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I have thought about one of those for a long time. I would love to get a chance to try one! ha ha
Still can't believe that chopper, that has to be one of the first raked and extended front ends built!
 
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