I had to run in to Nashville today to take care of a computer issue and on the way I spotted this Hyabusa… one of the fastest production bikes you can buy. That’s the Nashville sky-line in the background… approaching from the East.
While I was downtown I decided to stop off at Arnold’s for a bite to eat. Arnold’s is a Nashville landmark and serves the best home-style country food you will find anywhere. (Check out Arnold’s here.) After stuffing my face I walked out to find the 2 bikes below parked outside.
The Honda is an old GL650. I haven’t seen one in years and it was cool to check out the sideways V-Twin poking out from the frame. The other bike is a 2001 Suzuki SV non “S” version. Mine is an “S” version and the difference is that mine has a fairing and lower bars for a sportier look and feel. Other than that… same bike as mine.
I had been waiting for this weekend all Winter long! After enduring week after week of less-than-desirable riding conditions… the torture ended this Saturday and Sunday as beautiful riding weather prevailed and sunshine and temperatures in the low 70’s were the fashion in Middle Tennessee.
I took full advantage! On Saturday I hopped on the Electra Glide and lead my first group ride of the year. It was a beautiful backroads route and I completely enjoyed riding with 13 of my friends… some that I hadn’t seen in several weeks.
That afternoon I test rode the 2009 Buell SB12XSs (see RANT from 03/21/09) and on Sunday afternoon I escaped for a ride on the SV, enjoying some of my favorite curveys. Below is a short video from Sunday’s excursion. It was a great weekend of riding!
Last night I completed my third workout of the week. Honestly, I wasn’t thrilled about the thought of torturing myself for another hour of my life but I was a good little boy and resisted the urge to blow off the gym and go for a ride. There was a bright side to it though… other than all that good health stuff. When I finished, I dragged my worn-out body to the parking lot where my truck was parked… but before I got to the Swag-mobile I noticed this beauty parked nearby.
A primo condition Honda CBR1000F. Not sure what year it was but based on the trim my best guess would be that it was a ’93 model. You don’t see many 16 year old sport bikes that are this nice. A real gem for sure!
An interesting side note is that this model is equipped with the factory Linked Breaking System that Honda introduced in 92. The official name for it was the Dual Combined Brake System. I’ve never ridden a bike equipped with DCBS but the idea was that front brake lever operates the front calipers but also proportionally applies the rear brake, while the rear brake engages one front calipers.
Is my motorcycle life pathetic or what? My saddle time has been limited lately so alternatively I have been finding pleasure in snapping pics of random bikes I happen to see while I roll around caged like an animal. That’s messed up man!
The problem is that at the moment I am unable to commute on the bike so my riding time is limited to the weekends… which have not been very cooperative as of late. So here you go again… a couple more shots from today.
The first one (above) was shot in the morning while it was still very overcast. The guy had a nice little Honda Shadow… and I had to get the “Gun Show” billboard in the background so everyone would immediately know this was shot in Tennessee… Haha! The second shot (below) was taken after the sun made his appearance… a nice GSXR in the parking lot of the local Road House.
For the past few days we have had near perfect riding weather here in Middle Tennessee and bikers (other than me) all over the area have been taking full advantage of it. In fact, I counted 14 bikes yesterday afternoon just on my 18 mile trek home from the office.
As you can imagine, I was about to have a breakdown so I contacted my buddy from the next town over and we made plans to meet at the local Honda/Suzuki Dealer this morning for their monthly breakfast… and from there we planned to head to the not-so-mythical-land of “Idon’tknowwherewearebutIlikeit”-ville!
I got up early and made sure the SV’s tire pressure was good, checked the oil level and was on my way by 7:30am. About 3 blocks from the house I stopped and topped off with 93 octane and just as I put the nozzle back in the pump… I felt it. A fine mist on my cheek. In a fit of denial I headed on towards the meet-up location and before I hit 5 miles on the trip-odometer the heavens opened up and flooded me and the SV. I was bummed for sure (this was not forecasted) but reluctantly turned around and headed back to the house. Regardless of how bad I wanted to ride, spending the morning fighting wet roads and wet clothes trumped it all.
On a positive not though, I did grab a couple of pics of the SV before I left so getting it out wasn’t a total waste. And I did go on to the breakfast (caged) to meet my friend. We had a good time slamming a few pancakes and looking around the shop at all the bikes. BTW, he did make it there on his Kitana. I grabbed the shot of him below as he headed home.
Everyone that rides has a special place in their heart for their first motorcycle. Like many of you, I started with a Briggs & Stratton powered mini-bike but my first “real” motorcycle was a 1970 Honda CL100 “Scrambler”. My dad bought the bike for me in 1973 and the little red Honda probably had more impact on me than any other bike I’ve owned. You see, back in those days most of the guys in the neighborhood were still riding mini-bikes and the ones that did move up were riding Honda 50’s. But the CL100 was a “real” motorcycle with full-size tires, suspension, five-speed transmission and a blistering 99cc’s of raw power! And although I wasn’t… it was even street legal. This was the motorcycle that took me to the next level of riding and instantly crowned me king of the neighborhood motorcycle brats! You should have seen their faces the first time they saw that red beauty!
It’s funny to look back now and see how small it really was (and how young I was) but I owe a lot to that Scrambler. It taught me how to use a clutch which proved invaluable when it came time to learn how to drive a car. It taught me how to use a front brake and why using it while going down a dirt embankment is a bad idea. It taught me that wheelies without proper execution can result in scars. It even gave me my earliest inkling that bikers get the really pretty girls as evidenced by the sudden interest of the lovely neighbor girl. Ahhhh, to be young again!
In retrospect, I really didn’t have the bike that long before moving on to more powerful motocross bikes like my Suzuki RM-100 but I will always have fond memories of the Honda CL100 Scrambler that thrust me into motorcycle manhood! I wish I still had it.
There are still some around… Last summer I attended a motorcycle event in Nashville and ran into a guy who actually had a restored CL100. It was a different color and not the exact same year as mine but man did it ever bring back a flood of good memories. I’m sorry to say that I don’t remember the guys name but he was kind enough to let me snap a few pics. Some are posted here for your pleasure.