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Friday, May 27, 2011

Back in the day!

I try and explain to people that my Kawasaki, being a 91 model, is actually very much a classic in todays MC market. But when your brought up with looking at pictures of Eddie Lawson riding the Moriwaki kawasaki monsters , you realise just how much changed from that bike and then up to the delta boxed ZXR.
Air cooled, steel frame, underslung swing arms and dual gas shocks, which engines tuned to burst and of course those flat tracker bars giving everything away.
Cool that they released a modern version of the bike, but as usual the weights increase (as well as power of course) but the whole retro thing doesn't really get it as the bikes are too rider friendly! They weren't back in the day, with a 130 Pirelli on the back you were working with large tyres :-)
I suppose the generation prior to that probably felt that was also massive compared to what they had to use.
Those old kawaski Eddie Lawson replicas go for big bucks nowadays.

Another bike to die for was, in my opinion, the Mike Hailwood replica. These bikes are such dinasaurs nowadays compared to whats happened since the time that Brembo Goldlines were considered the best one could buy, alongside Lockheeds that is.Keeping in mind that in 1981 you still had to have a wee carpet under the bike in case it decided to remind you that the Italians had a different concept of Quality Assurance...
As always with the Dukes, it was that sound. I had a friend who owned the standard 900ss and it looked and sounded tremendous..but reliability versus know the rest...
Then came the beast I never owned but always wanted..back then that is..the RG500..Look at the rear tyre..didn't even stretch to a 130..but it worked..The number of times I went down Leith walk in Edinburgh and just sat on an RG , looking at the clean lines of the cockpit and wondering how she'd fair against my yamaha 350 at the time..which had powerjet 38's and Swarbrick pipes on a tuned engine...

Funny when you look back and what was and what is available out fo the crate nowadays..
Seems like the aftermarket frame constructors have been closed down as the factories are providing the bikes that everybody wants out of the crate. 
I reckon the ZXR750R K1 is more than enough for me nowadays..gettin' old and paying classic insurance on a bile with a Japan full power engine...sign of the times... 

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