Well, folks.. I guess i am not the only one who did ask myself sometimes; Why the heck i am still riding my BSATRIUMPHNORTONAJSENFIELD or whatever britbike. To be honest: If you run an old bike and would write down all the little and big services in a diary; a never ending story for years and decades. Try to count together what you had to spend for a mechanic, each minute cost you 1€, 1,25$, or 1Pound roughly. Multiply with number of bikes you own.Thats some big money, i guess. Think about all the breakdowns, the phonecalls home to your wife, friends or breakdown services for recovering. There must be something special that make us go on with this old iron. Just saying: me myself and i are into BSA`s since the early eighties, all year round, riding even under rough conditions. You know, there must be a very special relationship with a bike, if you start a trip in miserable weather, like pouring rain. Would be nice to hear your story; what are the reasons that you still ride a britbike. Maybe we can collect some points: -we are britbikers because we are waterproof -we are britbikers because we can fix our bikes on our own -we are britbikers because we dont want to recognize our bike by the numberplate at big parkinglots. -we are britbikers because we need an excuse for our dirty fingernails -we are britbikers....now its up to you, to name it.
Dieter lad, cos when it's right, it's RIGHT.. D'ya hear me brother, no matter how much stinking luca ya throw at em, when that engine is throbbing, and that road is right, NOTHING on this sweet Earth comes close to a good Olde Brit bike...
Not even a Hundred Dollar bike lad..
And I should know, the amount of blood sweat & tears I've thrown at the A10 over the years, would've bought me a brand spanking new Hundred Dollar a long time ago..
I'm an individualist. I do what I decide to do. And I decided I want to listen to the sound of two BSA exhausts and feel the power in the steering bars and in the footrests and in my... below my backside
Modern bikes do not bore me. I even have one, though she also has the ripe age of 18 years. Maybe its her almond shaped eyes I fell for. I like both my bikes. Both Brits.
This will come as no surprise to you all, but I am not a "britbiker" per se, I am a motorcyclist, and I don't care if it is new, old, British, or made in outer mongolia. As long as it has a beating heart and two wheels, it is good to me.
I like almost everything on two wheels, even them hundurd dollah bikes aren't really too bad, it's the attitude them real 1%'ers affect, and them durn fool wannabies get into that hurts them in my eyes...
But, if I was to catagorize why I still ride brit, I'd have to say; it's because they are PAID for, I know, mostly, how to work on 'em sufficiently that I won't go into hock for life if they fail to run, they let me ride to my limit or more, I can pick 'em up if they fall over, they've got their own soul, I get more looks than most appliance riders ever will, and best of all, MOST other brit riders know how to be just plain ol' good folks, they'll bend over backwards to assist with a problem, try to help think of solutions, help find those hard to find parts so another brit bike will be back on the road, and try to look out for other brit riders.
THANKS everyone, for all the help I've received from all youse guys!
Yes, I also have had some soul-less appliances [ sewing machines ], even wouldn't mind another road bike of some such, but I'm getting to the point I cannot lift a REAL road bike up off the ground anymore, and I KNOW it. There is not much draw for me to want to go on any real long road trips on a bike any more either, so a reasonably sized bike is all I want or need any more... My respect goes out to the guys like Semper Gumby.
Re: I am a britbiker because..although..
#574679 12/01/147:45 pm12/01/147:45 pm
The big commercial Adler sewing machines aren't soul-less. Modern bikes bore me- I am not a plastician. Ancient motorcycles allow me to travel in time and know what people in the earlier part of the last century experienced.
I like bikes with 50HP, skinney tires, and marginal brakes. Vide my Bonnies. and, thinking more on it, skinny with no sense of when to stop, that is the kind of girl I used to like, too, back in those old days.
my father was....and HIS father was....Grandpa rode Harleys and Indians...he lived not far from the Indian factory in MA.
My father was the one with British taste in machinery: MG's and Austin Healys when he was a teenager/young man. He sold his '60 Sprite when I came along because you can't fit three people in one (safely). He then branched into Triumph motorcycles in 1971....we spent countless hours with me on pillion as a young teenager.
I am a britbiker because:
the nut doesn't fall far from the tree.
Last edited by JubeePrince; 12/01/149:43 pm.
'77 T140J "Vintage Bike". What's in your garage?
"The paying customer is always right."
Fitting round pegs into square holes since 1961...
I grew up on a Schwinn Fastback bicycle and experienced the freedom of two wheels from an early age in the late sixties early seventies. Wheelies a few blocks long and ramps built at the bottom of every hill. A few minibikes in-between but then I became a muscle car guy. Novas, Chevelles, Corvettes, Tri5 Chevys, GTOs - that was my cup of tea. Still Is. However , living in NYC for the last 20 years kept me from my passion of cars and sort of my identity . As one of my hangouts in the neighborhood was a bar called Motorcity and the owner was a motorhead, he rode a BSA bobber,I started to fall in love with that bike. He parked it in the bar and on the sidewalk in front of the bar everyday. Eventually I had to ask about the bike and what BSA was. When I couldn't talk him into selling his bike to me I found one on eBay that needed a clutch. 2 years in a no good Harley shop and a lot of money later I was riding my beautiful red Lightning. THEN I met you lot and the rest is history!! Many more Brit bikes and fantastic trips around the world with the best of you!!! Life could not be any better! And that is why I ride British bikes my friends....
(Of note- three glasses of wine already downed, so maybe a bit of truth in ther writing.....)
When I grew up, it was either Harley or Brit. Period. I can't say that I usta' ride an old 350 Hindu, because the first one I ever bought was in 2013! I grew up in a time when you rode Harley if you could, and Brit was the second choice. I got out of the Harley game when Easyriders ran an article that stated, "If you own a 45, keep it cause values are gonna go up!"
Fuck 'em, that's when I quit.
It ain't about "VALUE" anymore.
I like my old Triumphs, with their points I know I can be stuck in West Africa and find a bloody part that will keep me going. I can grab the wrenches by feel these days, I know what sounds they make and which ones are happy and which ones aren't. (Damn, time for the fourth glass....) I can wrench on the old girl and keep her running forever- cylinder bore wear be damned!
When I hop onto Miss Penny -or that newly acquired rigid 1966 that's gonna be built- I'm going to where I belong. Real metal, knowing what it's gonna do, and the ability to keep it all happening, all with the little itty bitty set of tools mounted on the bike.
Money? Fuck it. This ain't about that. She's the better part of my life, and there ain't no dollar signs that can make any difference there. Hell, I didn't want to own a "CLASSIC",the rest of the world DECIDED that this is what I have by choosing some arbitrary timeframe to make her one, no, all I want to do is keep riding my bike! (Also note that most of this post is aimed directly at Miss Penny, as the new bike has yet to be fully incorporated into my life...but wrenches are slowly getting twisted!) Yep, gimme an old Triumph anyday, that's where I BELONG!!
(P.S. Mental note- include wine rack in newly designed trailer for motorcycle....)
I ride old Brit because: I started out with a T150v, and everything after that is easy to keep running, though slightly slower. They handle intuitively, enter a corner at the proper speed and the bike finds the correct line. For the most part, the mechanical parts make sense, to a Luddite. Mostly I ride old Brit bikes because it's too much trouble, or impossible, to get anything else to shift on the correct side.
The first bike I got after that crappy two stroke Jap bike was a 650 BSA. Since then I've had a British bike or three in the garage every year but one when I thought I would try just driving a car for a while. That was the worst year of my life.
Bikes 1974 Commando 1985 Honda Nighthawk 650 1957 Thunderbird/T110 "Flying Tiger" Antique Fans: Loads of Emersons (Two six wingers) plus gyros and orbiters.
My interest in britbikes was awakened by a guy at school who ran a 350 AJS, I immediately was impressed by its sound, and the looks of that bike. Not to mention the fact that he and his bike attracted girls in away that left me dead in the water with the humble moped that I was riding at the time.
I started to buy bike magazines, and found out that the more sporty high performance machines at that time were british.
Of course there were BMW's and Harleys, but these machines looked boring, just like the DKW RT250 two stroke, that my dad sold a few years earlier before he made the "upward" move to a car.
Japanese bikes were just emerging on the european markets, and were mostly two strokes that burned holes in their pistons, although the Honda CB450 was a step into the right direction, it still was no match for the british twins, at least in my imagination..
I was 17, and still one year too young to apply for a motorcycle driving licence when I bought my first Britbike, an ex dutch army Matchless G3L. Of course, I always had to "defend" myself when friends tried to convince me that a Honda CB750 four was a better bike than a BSA/Triumph 3. in fact, none of these guys still ride bikes today, is that perhaps the proof that britbikes are the real thing?
Anyway, I never lost my 'faith', and still ride British bikes today, If you want an explanation for this peculiar behaviour, sorry I can't help, I don't have one. Is there a psychologist on this forum ?
PS: my latest aquisition was a small Italian bike, so maybe there is hope after all.
Last edited by Peter R; 12/02/145:06 pm.
Peter. 1974 Commando 850 1972 Trident T150T 1961 Goldie DBD34 1969 Benelli 250 sport special
Re: I am a britbiker because..although..
[Re: Peter R]
#574763 12/02/141:06 pm12/02/141:06 pm
I started riding at 16, a 1962 triumph trophy 500, tag number ma185. I bought it to ride the streets of kuala lumpur, which were already full of export triumphs; Norton's, ajs' s, matchless, and all the rest of 50 years of colonial two wheelers in Malaya and British Borneo. Plus two stroke step throughs of various makes, premix being available at the pump and all that.
British machinery was all that was, springers, Lucas, roadholders, and featherbeds. I learned to ride wearing my raincoat backwards in the monsoon thunderstorms wishing I could own a Bonneville, the mightiest machine available, although everyone acknowledged that the i s o l a s t I c Norton's were far more comfortable to ride all day.
Today I ride them still because they still evoke the same interest and curiosity about machinery they always have for me. Im much more intelligent about them than I was at 16, and I spend more money. But essentially nothing has changed-- I love them when they howl on the way up to the ton, and I love the involvement they demand to make them work correctly.
And I cant ride a bike when they shift on the left anyway, so we're stuck with each other.
Fun read. I started with BSAs because I could still recall that HS senior, Phil Dustin, roaring to school in the morning as my Buddy and I walked. His hair was always straight back when he got there, and looked just like the motor. He was cool, but would still talk to younger guys..... Paul Nettinger had a Vincent,...... so beyond, never even thought about it! Now, it's just because I like'em, and they have soul. Love'em and hate'em, sometimes on the same day.
Britbikes are like my friends who I've known for over 40 years. We've grown old together, shared good times and bad. I'm comfortable with their quirks. Even when they let me down, I know their intentions were good.
wow, looks like this thread wakes some interest. well,my own history with bikes didnt start with britbikes, to be honest. But it was the time of so called "Windgesichter",MC guys with leatherfaces. Riding reliable classics like Horex, BMWs, Zuendapp, going to winter rallys like Elefantentreffen in the Blackforest and camp in the snow. I guess, its the same kind of people, just like britbikers. Enthusiasts, who like to be on the road, feel the wind, go wherever they want to go, meet others with the same interest. See the world, like i did when exploring the new world lately, 9000 miles with friends of britbike.com. Traveling to see big nature, meet icon BSA riders of the golden age of britbikes, doing some fantastic rides with friends... i think you can call me blessed.. ..and already sacrified by Morgan, not to forget.
I love the Brit bikes more than any other but I can never figure out how anyone can be bored with a motorcycle. Just the act of riding is enough for me. Add the sound, the looks, and the feel,of a Brit Twin, and the world just gets a little -OK a LOT- better. I learned to drive in a Triumph TR2, and Triumph motorcycles were first in my early awareness of motorcycles. So there's that. But I love all my bikes- each one has its own spirit and pulse. Boring? Pah. Each bike, or type of bike, is good in its own way, IF you're open to its qualities. OH BTW, I hung out with all the Harley 1% types, also, back in the day. Now THAT didn't exactly bore me. Neither did it entice me into wanting a Harley. Maybe when I get old....
"It is no measure of health, to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society."