Monday, April 30, 2007

Burnouts, Old Bikes & Bad Stomachs

Gaz discovered a nail in his tyre which was unrepairable, so the only thing to do was buy another tyre and finish his old one off good and proper with a series of burnouts and rolling burnouts.

That was Friday. Sunday I headed over to the Classic Bike Show at Stafford County Show Ground. The most annoying thing about this was, I never found ANYTHING to buy. Not one single item. Well OK, I did actually end up buying something. It was a piece of diesel marinated cardboard impersonating a cheeseburger at a cost of £3.30!

Forget your Vincents and such like, this Triumph was my favourite bike of the show.

A superb BSA Goldstar.

Back to the burger...... it's poisoned me! Without going into too much detail, ever since yesterday afternoon I've had murky water exiting me with the force of a fire extinguisher. This morning I seem to have swapped from a water based extinguisher to one of foam. Not a good way to start my week. And sorry for sharing that one with you.

Any suitable donations would be greatly appreciated.... ice, cork, more toilet paper.......

Monday, April 23, 2007


Finally Neil has managed to get the Yellow Belly on the road so we celebrated with a trip to Bourton-on-the-Water, riding at what Neil described as a "sustainable pace". Having said that, this description only came to light later on after a couple of beers down the pub.

A "sustainable pace"? Isn't that something you aim to achieve on an all day drinking binge?

Neil's Yellow Belly sporting one of Loz's home made Givi Luggage mounting racks. No bike should be seen without one!

Anyway, after a tedious slog down the M42/M40 we turned off onto the A429 in the direction of Bourton. After a few roundabouts that were, according to Neil, taken at "impressive lean angle" (again, beer induced conclusions) we were greeted with some fine twisty bends that put more than the odd smile on our faces. I remember riding down this road last year and not enjoying it but now I've had another go at it I've changed my mind.

Loz with his new "To the pub" £8 T-shirt

Loz with his daughter Ebony in Morton-in-the-Marsh, and Yellow Belly in the background.

Ebony's first trike.

Some superb old bikes on display outside Bourton Motor Museum

Neil, myself and Ebs

A jangle wouldn't be a jangle without some food along the way so we plumped to eat at the Mad Hatter Tea Shop on the banks of the river.

A fine beef in ale pie with chips, peas and carrots.

Apparently this was supposed to be an omelette. I'm surprised they've never been prosecuted under the Trade Descriptions Act! Not good at all. And if that wasn't bad enough, a bird decided to poop straight onto our table. Had it have landed on the omelette it might have added some flavour!

That sort of wraps up our day. There's not a lot else to say really apart from we managed to avoid the motorway on the way back which was an altogether much pleasanter experience.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Happy Birthday

Let me tell you something. Today our blog is one year old.

I can hardly believe the amount of crap I've written on here over the last twelve months. Don't quote me on this but I think the figures are one hundred and eight posts by me, two by Matt, two by Gaz, one by Loz and one by Neil.

Whilst the writing has been enjoyable it's also been a right pain in the ass at times, but it's all been worth it just for the comments alone.

I'd really like to thank everyone who stops by here and comments. It's you people out there that help make the blog what it is.... you know, on the whole fairly shit and boring. Wait, that doesn't sound good does it. What I was trying to say was the blog would be fairly shit and boring if it wasn't for all those that comment. Redeemed?

I also know by our site stats that there are a lot of people who regularly come back and read what's on here (presumably because they find it of some sort of interest) who never comment. So to you people, a big thanks for coming by.

Here's to the next twelve months of drivel

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Tutbury Castle

On Easter Sunday I took a ride out to Tutbury Castle which was once home to the Mercian Kings and afterwards the Earls and Dukes of Lancaster. It's recently featured on the television series Most Haunted. That's largely down to the fact a lot of people think it's haunted. I didn't see any ghosts but I did see a right fit youngish lady dressed up in Viking Attire.

To be honest there isn't really a fat lot left of it to see but they do host quite a lot of event days. On Easter Sunday and Monday they had a Viking re-enactment event on which would have been fairly entertaining had I stuck around long enough to watch it and hadn't been distracted by the fit lady in Viking attire.

The South Wing/Hall/what ever they called it and a hanging man. Don't be alarmed, he's not real.

Hang in there matey

Sponsored by NEXT


Call me sad but the most thrilling part of the visit was clapping eyes on a right fit youngish lady dressed up in Viking attire (Yeah I know, I've already mentioned the right fit youngish lady dressed in the Viking attire).... But listen, talk about the wrong place at the wrong time, she only went and got her ass right in the middle of my photo (rolls eyes).

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Matlock Bath & Arbor Low

Loz, Dean, Gaz, Cara and myself all met up at the Bowling Green in Lichfield yesterday morning for a ride out to the Peak District. After a five minute natter and another five minutes fitting the Pilligrip to Gaz's bike we were off.

The Bowling Green - More of a pub than a bowling green

Rig from Rigsville asked us if we could test a product called Pilligrip. It's basically a piece of rubber matting which is designed to fit snuggly over the pillion seat of any motorcycle, helping prevent the poor pillion's ass from skidding all over the place. Cara's first impressions after a hundred or so miles were positive.

Our first stop off was Matlock Bath, a favourite meeting point for bikers. We conveniently managed to find a parking space right outside a cafe that happened to have an empty table outside. Quite a feat on Bank Holiday Easter Monday!

"A nice cup of tea and a piece of cake Aunt Sally". Anyone remember Worzel Gummidge?

Matlock Bath main street

Sadly I'm afraid it IS a strawberry milkshake!

From Matlock, much to Loz's disgust, we headed off in search of a bit of culture and ended up at Arbor Low, a Stone Age henge built about 4500 years ago. After studying the undulating landscape of this fine piece of English heritage, Loz concluded it would make a fine motorcycle trials playground! As amazing as the henge is, I did secretly agree with him though.

With the culture over and done with we were just in time to enjoy a thoroughly unpleasant journey home in the rain (Moaning from Loz because he spent hours cleaning his bike the day before). Being stupid, I decided in my wisdom to ride in jeans and trainers yesterday, only to find when we arrived at the pub, it looked like I'd pissed myself. "That'll LEARN you." as Gaz so eloquently put it.

What else went wrong? Well my shoe lace came undone and decided to melt itself all over my exhaust GRRRRR, and Dean on occasions forgot what country he was in and decided to veer off onto the wrong side of the road, usually whilst trying to negotiate a bend.

That just about sums up the days events.

For those that are interested, there's an A road between Matlock and the A515 called the A5012 that is awesome on a bike. It's well worth checking out. It's also worth noting that there's a petrol station at the A515 end of it in case you're running low on fuel.

Monday, April 02, 2007

Red Light District

Written by Neil

Well it’s Sunday morning and the clocks have gone forward which can mean only one thing….. Lighter nights, better weather and jangling. It also means I’ve got to put my money where my mouth is and get the infamous Yella Belly (Alias XJR1300) standing on its own two rubbery round things.

Can’t be difficult, I only took it apart to “fettle” (mind you that was eight months ago!). So eyes down and on with juggling four down pipes, the bottom box, a tube of exhaust paste, a selection of spanners and the must have “cuppa tea”, its funny where you can wedge your big toe when you run out of hands. Two hours later and all's looking good, the queen bee is ready to buzz, battery in and a final smirk before hitting the go button……. NOTHING! Flatter than Loz’s finger after a day’s tool setting!!

Okay that’s cool, charger on, kettle singing, Sunday paper in hand , I’ll see you later my stripy friend.

(Tick tock , tick tock……. Times up)

So I’m back, obligatory smirk and hit the button…….. Oh yes boys she’s humming, warm her gently through, listen to those pipes burble, bring it on.

Hang on, what's that RED LIGHT mean???? Doh, switch it off quick it’s the oil pressure. There’s eighteen quid of Castrol’s finest sloppy stuff in there, what’s going on??

I know, what’s through the round window?…… NOWT , its empty. Now I know that’s not true and the floor's not wet so come on Mr Castrol where are you hiding? So I drop the sump plug and out he runs, I check (Again) the pressure relief on the filter, nope that’s happy. OK time for the big guns ….. Enter stage left Mr Haynes with a Cuppa. Bit of reading later and oh yes there’s two pressure relief's in the sump. Now, it's stood eight months minus any sloppy liquid so there’s half a chance me thinks that the little blighters are stuck. OK exhausts off, sump off, got Ya !! ….. Oh no I haven’t, they're fine. Blow through the pipes, check the sump filter, all happier than Michael Barrymore in his swimming pool.

So now what???????

Enter stage Right Mr Haynes. The tea is starting to kick in by now and that hour I lost in bed this morning is a distant memory…. HOW MUCH OIL SHOULD THERE BE???

3000ml without a filter, 3350ml with a filter ….. Yep that’s me I’m OK with that one………… BUT Wait! What’s this sneaky little sub note previously written in early morning invisible ink. Total capacity 4.2litres….. NAAAARGH !