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 Post subject: Re: SV-Wolf's Bike Blog
Unread postPosted: Sat Dec 24, 2011 9:33 pm 
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 Post subject: Re: SV-Wolf's Bike Blog
Unread postPosted: Sun Dec 25, 2011 12:06 am 
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Merry Christmas to you as well. I hope the New Year brings great things your way...

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 Post subject: Re: SV-Wolf's Bike Blog
Unread postPosted: Fri Dec 30, 2011 8:24 am 
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sv-wolf wrote:
jstark47 wrote:
sv-wolf wrote:
jstark47 wrote:
sv-wolf wrote:
For someone whose idea of heaven is either riding into the sunset on a big yellow three cylinder beast......

Walked into the local Triumph dealership this Thursday past, and there's a big yellow three cylinder beast for sale..... yellow Daytona 955i, a 2003, I think. When I saw it, I thought of you immediately!

It didn't have an undamaged left fairing, did it?

Actually the whole bike was immaculate. Destined to be a collectors' item some day, that's not a common bike over here, especially in that color.


Weep!

That's interesting about them being uncommon though. I put out a Google alert for anyone selling fairings for a 2006 Daytona 955i and practically the only ones that have turned up (three to date) have come from the West Coast of the US. So if it's not a common bike in the US, what's going on? Maybe you crash them more than we do? Or maybe we are just hoarders and don't like letting go of stuff. Second-hand parts for the 955i are like gold dust over here, and Triumph are milking that for all its worth. A new left-hand fairing from Triumph would set me back £280.

The yellow Daytona's still in the showroom, I took another look on Wednesday. It has 16 miles on it. 16 miles!!! Apparently it was in someone's collection, no wonder it is immaculate. They want $9,900 for it.

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 Post subject: Re: SV-Wolf's Bike Blog
Unread postPosted: Fri Dec 30, 2011 1:58 pm 
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jstark47 wrote:
sv-wolf wrote:
jstark47 wrote:
sv-wolf wrote:
jstark47 wrote:
sv-wolf wrote:
For someone whose idea of heaven is either riding into the sunset on a big yellow three cylinder beast......

Walked into the local Triumph dealership this Thursday past, and there's a big yellow three cylinder beast for sale..... yellow Daytona 955i, a 2003, I think. When I saw it, I thought of you immediately!

It didn't have an undamaged left fairing, did it?

Actually the whole bike was immaculate. Destined to be a collectors' item some day, that's not a common bike over here, especially in that color.


Weep!

That's interesting about them being uncommon though. I put out a Google alert for anyone selling fairings for a 2006 Daytona 955i and practically the only ones that have turned up (three to date) have come from the West Coast of the US. So if it's not a common bike in the US, what's going on? Maybe you crash them more than we do? Or maybe we are just hoarders and don't like letting go of stuff. Second-hand parts for the 955i are like gold dust over here, and Triumph are milking that for all its worth. A new left-hand fairing from Triumph would set me back £280.

The yellow Daytona's still in the showroom, I took another look on Wednesday. It has 16 miles on it. 16 miles!!! Apparently it was in someone's collection, no wonder it is immaculate. They want $9,900 for it.


Hi JS

What do you think of that price? It sounds a lot to me for a 2003 Daytona even if it is in mint condition. It doesn't exactly appear as though there is a lot of demand for it.

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Percy Bysshe Shelley

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 Post subject: Re: SV-Wolf's Bike Blog
Unread postPosted: Fri Dec 30, 2011 5:46 pm 
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sv-wolf wrote:
Hi JS

What do you think of that price? It sounds a lot to me for a 2003 Daytona even if it is in mint condition. It doesn't exactly appear as though there is a lot of demand for it.

Kelly Blue Book estimates $4,100 for an '03 955i in excellent condition. But they also allow for a 2003 bike in excellent condition to have 40,000 miles on it. I doubt their pricing norms have this sort of sale in mind.

This particular dealership does a modest business in new Triumphs, and only very occasionally will a used Triumph show up on their sales floor. When one does, it tends to sit a while. There's other local dealerships that do much greater trade in used bikes, so there aren't many folks looking to buy used that would come to this place shopping. Sort of a self-fulfilling prophecy.

It might be a consignment sale, I didn't ask. If I were them, I'd try to sell it on eBay, or at a bike show where there's a concentration of well-heeled folk looking to buy unusual bikes. The poor thing needs to be taken out and ridden hard: at eight years old and no significant usage, I'd be suspicious of the state of anything rubber, gaskets, seals, etc.

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 Post subject: Re: SV-Wolf's Bike Blog
Unread postPosted: Fri Dec 30, 2011 7:30 pm 
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jstark47 wrote:
sv-wolf wrote:
Hi JS

What do you think of that price? It sounds a lot to me for a 2003 Daytona even if it is in mint condition. It doesn't exactly appear as though there is a lot of demand for it.

Kelly Blue Book estimates $4,100 for an '03 955i in excellent condition. But they also allow for a 2003 bike in excellent condition to have 40,000 miles on it. I doubt their pricing norms have this sort of sale in mind.

This particular dealership does a modest business in new Triumphs, and only very occasionally will a used Triumph show up on their sales floor. When one does, it tends to sit a while. There's other local dealerships that do much greater trade in used bikes, so there aren't many folks looking to buy used that would come to this place shopping. Sort of a self-fulfilling prophecy.

It might be a consignment sale, I didn't ask. If I were them, I'd try to sell it on eBay, or at a bike show where there's a concentration of well-heeled folk looking to buy unusual bikes. The poor thing needs to be taken out and ridden hard: at eight years old and no significant usage, I'd be suspicious of the state of anything rubber, gaskets, seals, etc.



He he! "Unusual bikes!" Love it. Vive la differance!

Quite right about the gaskets, seals etc - and everything else, too. The bike never had the best of components. Triumph stopped making the Daytona before it was able to negotiate for top quality parts. Until then it was thought to be a fly-by-night company and few of the major suppliers would give it decent terms.

I bought my 2006 Daytona, brand new for £5,500. Admittedly, that was a thousand quid off the list price - special offer once Triumph had stopped making them. (Shame!) What's the exchange rate at the moment? I haven't been keeping tabs.

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Percy Bysshe Shelley

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 Post subject: Re: SV-Wolf's Bike Blog
Unread postPosted: Sun Jan 01, 2012 5:24 pm 
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I got out the Daytona, Saturday morning and rode down into London. I called in at a friend's place, changed into some walking boots and put on a rucksack, and then went for a hike around the city. I walked from Drayton Park down to St Pancras, where I dropped in at the British Library to look at a new exhibition of medieval manuscripts - fourteenth century Manga - amazing stuff. I used to think this kind of art was boring. Doh!

I pushed on through Bloomsbury, past the British Museum, into the West End and Trafalgar Square, and then on down Whitehall to Westminster and Pimlico. As I paced it out along The Embankment at Millbank (a fairly bleak part of town) a set of mega-speakers somewhere near the London Eye were blasting out music right across the river. The volume was tremendous. (I don't suppose the buskers made much money that evening.)

I scooted across the Thames at Vauxhall Bridge, past the weird MI5/MI6 building and dropped into the Triumph dealer under the railway arches for a quick shuftie to see if there was anything worth looking at. I cut through the station tunnel, up past the City Farm and the site of the eighteenth-century pleasure gardens to Lambeth and the Imperial War Museum. I hadn't intended to visit the museum but just happened to need a widdle as I was passing by. Having made use of its hospitality, I spent a couple of hours till closing time looking at the holocaust exhibition. (It was even more stomach churning than I'd been led to believe!). The Imperial War Museum is housed in a large building which was once the home of the Bethlehem Hospital or 'Bedlam' for short - the city's principal 'lunatic asylum'. Some things don't change, I guess. I walked on to St George's Circus where at the end of the 18th century, 'good' King George's troops massacred a huge crowd of people gathered for a 'Wilks and Liberty' protest. From there I headed back west towards Waterloo and the South Bank to get something to eat. And then it was (and only then) that I realised it must be New Year's Eve.

OK, I know. So, I must have eaten too much christmas pudding and watched too many DVDs over the last week and had too much time with nothing much to do, but I'd really forgotten what day it was. One day just flows into another at Christmas time. The first clue to the date was a huge metallic clanking sound all around me as hundreds of blokes in flourescent jackets were busy erecting crowd control barriers in streets and squares all across the South Bank and Bankside areas and, as I later found out, as far north on the other side of the river as Piccadilly Circus. New Year's festivities in the West End are traditional, and in recent years our Boris (the distinctly lunatic Mayor of London) has put on a spectacular fireworks display down on the river. The BBC were out, as usual, broadcasting the festivities on giant screens in Trafalgar Square.

Even by Europen standards, London is an unusual city, and for all sorts of reasons. For one thing, no-one has ever been able to plan it. As a result it has no real centre, just lots of districts, each with its open and closed spaces. This means tht there is no single area for people to congregate. It's really quite an anarchic place.

European cities usually get planned as a result of war, revolution or fire, and London has seen plenty of those. It was bombed to pieces in the last war and has been burned to the ground more times than anyone can count but despite all the efforts of the authorities, no-one has ever been able to force any rational order on it. They've tried, and failed. London crowds are like that too. They lack focus. And crowd management in the city is a nightmare for the police. How do you get a lot of people in an out of a city whose roads are narrow and tend to wiggle about as though they have no idea where they are going?

By the time I hit the giant Imax cinema at Waterloo, there were hundreds of security people milling about the streets in little groups of four or five. At the Waterloo Cut I listened in as a group of about thirty of them were getting a talk about looking out for knives. (Knife carrying is getting to be a problem, in parts of South London in particular). Everywhere the loud metallic clatter continued, as more and more barriers went up to channel people into and out of the city in ways that the roads themselves would fail to do.

I couldn't get anything to eat at the South Bank concert halls as all the restaurants near the river had closed down early. Instead I had to hurry across Hungerford Bridge and on to Leicester Square. I never get tired of the views up and down river, no-matter how often I cross it, but tonight my eyes were fixed on the far side and the paving slabs beneath my feet. I needed to get food. I cut through Charing Cross station to St Martins in the Fields and then headed for a favourite eating place just off Leicester Square. Once inside I shared a table with an Arab family. They were going down to the river for the entertainment. The two sprogs were wide-eyed with excitement, and their dad was pretty wired himself. Mum just giggled a lot.

There were relatively few people around when I had entered the restaurant. When I came out there were thousands. I had to push my way northwards against a tide of party-goers making their way down to the river for the fireworks - and the binge drinking, brawls, general hullabaloo and merry making. I passed packs of half-naked London lasses, frivolous in their spangly glad-rags, and foreign visitors from warmer parts of the world bulked up in their padded jackets against this mildest of northern climates. There were a lot of excited but sober-looking families, and mindlessly giggling teenage lads on the look-out for god knows what kind of entertainment.

I love big events but I came down to Central London for the New Year's festivities several years go and never want to do it again. It's a phenomenal atmosphere, but down by the river, on the bridges and embankments and in the waterside gardens where it all kicks off, you get packed into the crowd so tightly that you can't even raise your arms. If you get squashed up against some nutter off his head on booze or drugs life can get pretty hair-raising. And getting out of the city when it's all over can be pretty scary, too. On my way back to the station, I spent an hour squeezed between people all trying to get across Hungerford Bridge.

As I made my way northwards against the tide of people, the West End and Soho took on a strange empty appearance - empty because there were no cars. All the roads in the central West End had been closed off. Many of the tube stations near the river had shutters across their entrances. The crowd was coming in by foot. On New Year's Night, the busses run into and out of the city all night long but they don't come down to the river. You have to pick them up further out. After 11.00 pm they are all free. But London without cars is a strange experience; like bread without butter.

Once I hit Holborn, the crowds were less dense, and there were a few vehicles sheepishly roaming about. The boroughs crowding around the inner cities of London and Westminster began to take on their usual severe and spooky night-time appearance. London darkness is not like the darkness in other places. It's like polished tar. It's casts a dense shiney blackness over everything, and it glitters with highlights. It's hypnotic, and attractive too, in an odd sort of way, but not beautiful. Some of the strangeness of London at night comes from the narrow, chaotic quality of the city streets and some from its lighting. Many central parts are still lit by gas lamp. At dusk you can hear the hiss and pop as the old-fashioned mantles flicker into life before they start to cast an eerie glow over the buildings and streets.

By the time I got back to the bike up at Drayton Park it was nearly 11.00 and I was knackered. I was tempted to accept an offer to stay overnight, but though I was tired I was also wound up tight and still wanting to move. The traffic was light on the way home and I began to feel more mellowed out. There's nothing like a fast night ride to clear your mind.

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“Man has no right to kill his brother. It is no excuse that he does so in uniform: he only adds the infamy of servitude to the crime of murder.”
Percy Bysshe Shelley

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 Post subject: Re: SV-Wolf's Bike Blog
Unread postPosted: Tue Jan 03, 2012 12:19 am 
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Happy New Year 2012.

There were no celebrations planned for Vancouver this year. The city decided that after the hockey riots and the damage and the cost...they were not going to plan a big NY event. There were a few thousand people downtown...but it was not like the thousands and thousands that would normally go to an organized event.

The hooligans spoiled it.

I wish you well for 2012. :)

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 Post subject: Re: SV-Wolf's Bike Blog
Unread postPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2012 8:09 pm 
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Suddenly, it's hard to keep the house warm. The central heating is struggling even to keep the chill off the air. Tonight, I put a few logs on the open fire - not something I often do - and huddled up close to the grate for warmth. Cooking my evening meal in the kitchen, I wore a fleece over my jumper and, when that didn't do the job, plugged in a powerful little electric fire that I keep on hand for days like this. The fire is actually a greenhouse heater that used to belong to my parents back in the days when I was still hopeful and had a family home. My parents were mad keen gardeners. Sometimes, I suspect the greenhouse plants were kept warmer than me.

At midnight, tonight, I stood by the back door, looking out over the kitchen garden, and over the huge, white walnut tree and willow hedge to the rooftops beyond. Despite the hour, everything looked clear and bright with that special brightness that comes when there is high cloud and a thick covering of pure white snow. Winter was here at last. In a matter of hours my little domestic plot had changed into something quietly beautiful. Big dry flakes were falling steadily. They had been falling since I arrived back from London on the train at eight o'clock. They are still falling now. By tomorrow morning the drifts could be several feet deep - or more.

So here it is: the cold snap the Met Office have been promising us for weeks, a huge depression pushing in over the UK from northern Russia. The 'experts' tell us that it will cover the country in Siberian gloom (or what passes for 'Siberian gloom' in the British imagination) for several weeks. There'll be no more riding for a while, then - perhaps not until the spring. Ah well, at least I got round to buying two new waterproof covers for the bikes before the snows came. I'm glad of that. The old ones were going rotten and starting to tear. Tomorrow, or whenever the snow stops, I'll go out and oil the chains and spray the frames with AC50 - jobs I've been putting off 'till tomorrow' because they weren't necessary 'today'. OK: I got that wrong! It's the classic lazy man's gambit. I should know by now that it never pays off.

Huddling around the fire this evening, I tucked into a thick chicken stew with lots of root veg and big frothy dumplings. After that, I got my head stuck into a book: "There and Back Again to see how far it is" by Tim Watson. It's a hardback I picked up last week. It's rather grandly subtitled: "Cultural observations of an Englishman aboard a Harley-Davidson motorcycle around small-town America." It was the words "small-town America" that took my fancy. That's what I'd want to see on a trip to the States. My rule would be: stay off the Interstate and avoid the cities. I'm not a city boy. Definitely not! It's the spaces in between that attract me - the big wide-open spaces where a deepened sense of reality settles in and drives out all the obsessive fretfulness of daily life. As cities go, I make a special exception for London, of course : I've grown up and lived within its huge gravitational pull for most of my life and learned to love it despite myself. In the States, there are one or two exceptions too. I'd like to see Chicago - I've always been facinated by its folklore - and San Diego and maybe Memphis. Otherwise, it's the Appalachians and states like Wyoming that call loudest to my imagination.

I picked up the book from Sam Manicom at the London Excel motorcycle show - I look out for him every year. He is always there at his stand, talking riders into buying motorcycle travel books and persuading them to live out their dream. Sam is an adventure biker and a prolific writer - a great advocate of the "just do it" motorcyclist philosophy. He also gives talks about his life on two wheels. He's an inspiration to a lot of people. He handed me, "There and Back Again" and asked me to review it for him since he didn't have time himself. Well, no problem, Sam! My pleasure. Just the job for a snowy winter evening. So I'd better get back to it - and put a few more logs on the fire.

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“Man has no right to kill his brother. It is no excuse that he does so in uniform: he only adds the infamy of servitude to the crime of murder.”
Percy Bysshe Shelley

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 Post subject: Re: SV-Wolf's Bike Blog
Unread postPosted: Tue Feb 07, 2012 11:13 am 
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I'm a bit indignant about the "Siberian" weather we were promised. Yes, a couple of feet of snow accumulated in my back garden for 24 hours, but then we had a complete lack of sub-zero temperatures or night frosts, and it was rapidly reduced it to dirty grey slush. It has now almost disappeared. If it wasn't for the salt and the slush, the mild temperatures would have had the usual winter bikers out in force. As it was, I saw only one jet black Yamaha around town on Monday. It's exhaust had the most amazing deep-throated growl I've heard in years. God knows what the owner had done to achieve that.

We did have one proper snowy day, though. And when it snows in Hitchin, there's only one place to go: Windmill Hill.

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Percy Bysshe Shelley

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