Velocity is a state of grace

Gosh talking to a fellow here about bikes and I had bike back in the day that might well have killed me had I not become too poor to keep it. But I miss the clarity of it all, that comfortable feel of nothing else going on you only get on a bike at a certain speed, on a certain corner you like, on a nice day when your out and about for no reason. I wonder if this only happens when your young, or does it continue in a more muted way as I get older…

I came close to buying a motorbike in a cardboard boxes recently. It was a 750 Commando and I think I wanted it because I am trying to find that line in the corner, at the right speed in the right place again, get that old feeling back. Being locked down has amplified all my other noisy stupid annoying distractions to a point that pisses me off to no end?

WOW even the back of my head looks really stuffy and old now. When did that happen?
And I need a haircut, because it ain’t cool looking. Sort a gray Skullet happening…
Why doesn’t this dam Gazebo top fit right?
Next I will be sitting in lawn chair in the front yard yelling at the traffic to slow down if I don’t change path HA HA…

Just a thought I wanted to share.
Maybe you fellows and ladies have some feedback or are sharing a similar experience on lock down. Nothing else has really changed in my life since Covid I can’t honestly say I am missing anything outside the confines of my property here I just am becoming deeply reflective.

Good grief you can see the elastic at the back of my head from one side of my glass to the other. This is to keep them from sliding off my nose and hitting the ground when I bend down because of the dam masks.
If that is not the driest, stuffiest, old, nerdiest thing ever…

old bald (2)


I’m jealous cause you still have hair :rofl::rofl:


And i’m jealous cause there are no cardboard boxes of the smoothest riding British bike ever being offered my way .


I used to work on Norton’s, Triumph’s and BSA’s but they were too complicated for my pea brain so I went exclusively to Harleys. Couldn’t get more basic. Just a carb and a magneto on mine. When I was 20 I had a garage full of bike parts, probably enough to assemble three running machines. If I ever get to heaven I’m hoping it will be in that garage but maybe with a nice lathe and TIG welder, neither of which I had back then. I worked at a chopper shop mostly welding extensions into springer forks and turning swing arm frames into hard tails so idiots could look cool on unrideable machines. My street bike was an XLCH and I put Ceriani forks and shocks on it. I don’t know about now, but half a century ago they were top of the line. No extended 1940 springers that you couldn’t do a 180 turn on a two lane highway with for this boy. There were some hard years between then and now and all those toys didn’t survive but I still occasionally dream about riding.


Someone was most likely trying to customize it and the seller was dodgy about a lot of my questions and had few answers. The longer I sit in lock down the more I am left wondering with questions about a lot of things.


I read your post and felt the exact feelings you describe when I saw this bike for sale…of course I want drop everything, screw everybody, grab my cash, and drive 500 bazillion miles to go buy this. Then you posted a picture of the back of my head, and I realized this was not 1984…


Weird eh?
Its like it is 1984 and I am looking at the back of my Dad’s head as he walks out of the garage and tells me to get rid of that G… Dam bike…

Wow I see it now. My bad Covid hair looks like a pretty rough approximation of that post 1970s hair-do the old man sported…

I thought I was cooler than that.


Lol, I was never cool…but I wasn’t a cager either…now I am a passenger in a minivan…I need to rebel!


Never was interested in motorcycles. I was and still am interested in homebuilt trikes. The ones built with car engines. Don’t see them any more. When I was taking machining classes there was a welder student that built one. That was a sweet build.

I have not been in the lock down. Technically but not practically. Live in the country so no mask needed outside. No people in sight, most of the time. Normal shopping is at essential stores and McDonald’s drive through and pizza pick up stores.

Lost some hair from the chemo treatment. When it grew back it was black. Wonder what this next round of chemo will do.


Jeff when i was a in my early 20’s before i had a car license we were allowed to drive 3 wheelers /trikes on our full bike licenses was fun at that age and i have to admit i had a Berkley 3 wheeler and instead on the normal twin cylinder 2 stroke engine this one came with a mini 1275 gt engine , it went like stink ,nothing on 4 wheels around where i lived could touch this little thing .
I also had the 4 wheel version as well and was in the process of doing it up when i came across a Marcos GT so just had to have that instead

That’s one of my old BSA lightings and my 1938 500 side valve Triumph , nearly all my bikes arrived in cardboard boxes in those days it was amazing how many people could strip a bike ,/ engine and never be able to put them back together and so sold them for next to nothing . Happy days


For the past 10 days or so that name has been trending on my Google/YouTube feeds. Now you bring it up that can not be a coincidence.

I am very much a fan of that little 4 wheeler after seeing them on youtube.

They have TV shows up here all abut car and bike customization and people watch them. BORED people locked in their homes have probably dismantled perfectly good bikes with the intention of building a bobber and completely screwing the job up.

A chum of mine picked up a late 40s 500cc BSA. I had a look at it and noticed the gear case was held closed with Tech screws ( a self taping AN thread screw ). Its just a horror story of stripped fasteners now.

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Haha tech screw’s lovely we had a saying us old brit bike riders that when we broke down at least if we have a empty cornflake box and a bit of wire we can normally get back up and running again in no time , how many gaskets we made out of a cornflakes box was great , even stuffed grass into a tyre when i had a flat miles and miles away from no where :grin:


I never thought of that before…
Good idea.

Tyre, Arse Colour, Sulphur, Carburettor. Its nice to see someone who spells like me…

Way up north we used a lot of Petter diesels to run pumps and generators on the diamond drills. It was not quite so easy to get Whitworth nuts and bolts or tools for that matter. I walked into Acklands ( Canadian Grainger ) and asked one time if they had an whitworth tools because I wanted some sockets and wrenches. The sales guy told me they don;t sell that brand.

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If i was away from home and in the back of beyond all nuts bolts screws or any type of fastener always became what ever thread i was willing to recut with what ever it was i screwing in, for so many years all my spanners and sockets were whit even to this day i have a mix of all types of spanners in my box and so now with failing eye sight its what ever fits the tightest works the best .
by the way did you notice i had stuck a bonnie front end on the A65 , was in the days when they first put disk brakes onto bikes so had to have one and get rid of the old shoe’s

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I really did not notice until you brought it up that is out of place. I had the drum on my 67.
That was probably the single best improvement because the stock drum left a lot to be desired once you got it warm.

You want to know what I really looked at was the carb and I was wondering if you had as many problems with one of them vibrating lose at the worst times.

Never had a problem with my carbs working lose in fact the only thing that ever did unscrew and come loose were the barrel bolts on a Norton commando i was borrowing off my brother inlaw to get home from Devon to Birmingham on the motorway late one night i heard this clattering noise and felt wet feet , thought i had blown it up and started wondering how i was going to explain it was not my fault , managed to get a recovery truck to collect us on a pitch black motorway with no street lighting at all , dropped us and the bike off at home , next morning i went out looked at the bike and there were no nuts at all on the barrels holding them down onto the crankcase :face_with_hand_over_mouth: once re tightened down alomg with new nuts and spring washers and a top up of oil she fired up with no problems at all ! pheeew
BTW mine was also a 67 and probably started out its life as a thunderbolt as well but being young we always wanted more and better or so we thought , its only when we got our hands on a 67 spitfire mk2 that the difference was noticed the stock thunderbolt and lighting were like little old ladies compared to the spitfire with its upgrades

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Oh, I see now Dave. You were a Brit that got sent to the penal colony because you and your mates used to pull the Lorry out of the gar-age so you could drink stout and turn spanners with the other Rockers.

Very first thing I did when I got out of High school was buy a 1965 Triumph TT. I bought the Triumph because I didn’t know any better and Bob Dylan had a Triumph tee shirt on an album cover. Rode the crap out of it but it was always a matter of adjusting valve lash and trying to balance those damned carbs. It was always a good bike but after I put a better cam in it, it would lift the front tire even at 50 mph if I wanted it to. That cam was a Harmon-Collins 6 grind. After I wreck the front end on that bike I decided to make it a full out drag bike. Put a H-C 9 grind cam in it, 12 to 1 com pistons, forged connecting rods and a ton of money and the best I ever ran with it was High 12’s. Later Kawasaki came out with a 750 that ran middle 12’s right out of the box. I think much later, decades after I got out of the game, Suzuki came out with something Stock, that ran 10’s. The best I ever ran, with a maxed out Sportster was 11.70. That was still a major rush.

I considered myself to be a decent mechanic back then. Now you have to be a technician. I never made the transition. This is the carb I ended up using on all my bikes. Ever simpler than a Linkert. Both pretty crude and simple but you could tune them while rolling down the road.


Well Wallace you have set up a reflective-back once-was topic alright.
This happens to all of us at some stage of Life.
Covid shutdowns just forced a whole bunch of all-stops; what-now thinking at the same time.

Ha! Ha! Me? it was about 12-14 years ago realizing I never did get around to getting that missed- opportunity 1967-69 Plymouth Barracuda. And still could for $10-15 grand.
Had Ford/Chevy V-8’s. Had Volvo/MG sedans/Saab/VW watercooled fours. Had a bunch of AMC/Chevy/Ford I-6’s. But never the slick Plymouth 2-door coupe.
Ha! So I bought a die-cast zinc display model. In Racing green. No rust restorations then. No insurance then. No road driving DON’T you dare hit me!! Anxieties then.
But . . . not the velocity itch’s scratched.
Still missing . . . . something.
So. Two years ago in the winter I step by step pieced together a 1X 13 speed gravel bicycle. Spent 6 months building up strength-stamina solo training for that next Falls mountain road hunting season. Then spent the $150 USD for the limited access permit.
Damn. Just could not get the breathing wind back to not hold up the younger fellows. I was 65+. They were 30’s, early 40’s.

Yep. Indeed. Some things in my life it was British-better. SU constant velocity carburetors. Hand crafted lug brazed Reynolds Metals bicycles frames.
My 70’s bicycles it was it was forged aluminum components from Italy, Germany, Japan.

Motorcycles I was 100% Japanese 2-strokes. Singles.

This Forums Administrator, young man ChrisS had as his Internet name KYMetro for the (Suzuki) Metro street Mileage racers he built and drove. And him from Kentucky.
Someday 30 years down the road he’ll pine back for a hotted-up twin-cam Swift he never got around to setting up. Pining away for a velocity-ride that could be fixed with just a satchel of tools.

Some of the old school stuff it is thank-God goodby. Front drum brakes. Single hydraulic circuit braking systems. Seats with no anti-whiplash head rests. Bias-ply tires. Rust out annually exhaust systems. Twice a year tune ups because you had too.

All-in-all; the wood-for-power that we do is better as a Today provider. And a pass-on-to-tomorrow spring board.
And hey! We still get to purpose-use tune engines!! Wrench. Burn and weld metals.
Steve unruh


Yep. Gasifiers are scratching a itch that has long annoyed me. Now there is something to experiment with, slap together out of different junk and try and tune to some kind of efficiency. Not there on the last part but still enjoying the experimentation.


I thought my teeth were going to come lose at some speeds HA HA…
My bike was a basket case that had been butchered with the intent to build a chopper and it was a lot of effort to turn it back into a real bike including a second bike for parts. In the end I know the title on the bike I road was a 67, but it was a mix or worn parts I found.
I wish I had a photo but flood took care of those for me a long time ago