Friday, 30 December 2011
Wednesday, 28 December 2011
Marcelo from Brazil sent me a photo of one of his bikes. He says:
"Hello, I´m from Brazil and would like to kindly ask you help to identify the brand and model of one motorcycle I have here. The engine has a "Motori Minarelli" plate .
I really appreciate if you can take a look on the pictures and let me know any information.
Thank you and best regards,
Anyone got any ideas? I haven't - Minarelli motors were used in so many bikes..
Thursday, 22 December 2011
Happy Christmas and a peaceful New Year to you all from ITALIAN MOTOR magazine!
Wednesday, 21 December 2011
I sold it on for a 500 quid profit once I found my S3 not long after. Anyway, I learned so much by doing it myself, and ended up working in motorcycle workshops with the knowledge gained. Do it yourself!!
Friday, 16 December 2011
Up near my way, once a year in summer, a local village is given over to motorcycles, and this year, this lovely Demm Dick-Dick turned up. 50cc of class Italian cafe' racer moped. Great unrestored condition too, let's hope he keeps it that way. I used to see loads of Demms in Italy, but this is the first I've seen over here.
Did Demm change Dik-Dik to Dick-Dick to skirt around possible antelope copyright and patent issues?
Wednesday, 14 December 2011
Everyone, and I mean everyone had one in those days. They were just cool, and were literally big, warm, survival suits for kids, and easy for parents to get their kids to wear then. My brother had one which I considered to be better than mine, and I was so happy the day it was handed down to me. I had always wondered what happened to our parkas. They were like old friends that had disappeared over the time.
Imagine my surprise and joy then this week when I walked into our local charity shop (thrift store) and found this. A new, old stock, never worn Campari Snorkel Parka. Orange quilted lining, buckle on the hood, internal drawstrings, leather reinforced pocket seams, elasticated cuffs...I had forgotten what details these parkas had. Faux fur hood and polyester lining. All 100% nylon. As kids we were walking fire hazards, and by the time we had discovered cigarettes, we had - luckily - moved on to Harringtons, leathers or army jackets.
In a large size 40 and for just £10, I snapped it up without a second thought - and I'm now reliving my childhood winters in my new parka. My daughter gets scared when I peer at her through the snorkel. It's so warm, and comfy, and practical. And brings back very happy memories. Apparently they go on Ebay now for good money, especially the Lord Anthony ones. But I always remembered the Campari, England label (though it then says 'Made in Korea' on the label below..). Good parka info here
To appreciate how virtually all kids wore parkas in those days, watch this classic and famous clip from a football match when Hereford knocked Newcastle out of the FA Cup, from 1972. The pitch invasion is carried out by young parka kids in parkas, strangely enough mostly green in this case, and with some kids with hoods down and some in full snorkel. Classic.
Monday, 12 December 2011
Thursday, 8 December 2011
For as long as I've owned a 750 Guzzi from the V7 Sport/S/S3 range, and in my opinion the best looking 'modern' Guzzis ever built, I've also been fixated by short, black, stubby silencers for them after seeing photos. Factory and production race machines from the early '70s featured all types of silencers and exhaust systems, from long cigar shape, to yawing open wide cut down black things that always look like they were knocked up that day on the test bench. Bruno Scola's race bikes (above) usually featured matt black silencers and they always, to me, looked the bollocks - purposeful and to the point.
I found a (now) very rare full Stucchi system from the 1970s in Italy about 20 years ago, you can hear how it sounds on my S3 here:
I've just bought another two sets of nice period stubbies, for a very good price, from a bloke who was advertising one set on Italian Ebay. It is handy to be able to write in Italian to communicate with sellers over there, because it's stuff you just don't really come across here. One set, with the rounded ends, are period piece silencers for the Guzzi 750s of the time. Yeah a bit battered but who cares? I've seen them on various bikes over the years, and they also sound great, deep and different to the Lafranconis. The second set are also short and stubby, and kick up, not quite as pretty as the others, but interesting nonetheless. I now have great choices for my Le Mans 2 special, and will probably end up selling one of the sets if silencers to pay for other bits. The seller Franco also included a sticker in the package, which would originally have gone on the tank of my S3, advertising the fact the bike had (and still does) have linked brakes. Grazie mille Franco!!
Monday, 5 December 2011
I've met a lot of people around bikes in my time, but Florio Monti is still the best person I have interviewed, and I return to the set of shots I took of him at his workshop in Tuscany often. I was so proud to have him at my wedding, as we all rode in to the church together. He's living history and absolutely fascinating. At 90, he still goes out jogging every day, and continues rides his bikes. He rode in all the big road races in Italy in the 1940s and 1950s, and has some stories to tell.
Full story of Florio Monti in Issue Three
Friday, 2 December 2011
It's also flattering on a creative/personal level because Chris (who runs Bike Exif) doesn't really accept any old bike, or photos, as his stipulation is that the photography must also be of a high standard. One of the main aims of starting the magazine was photograph Italian motors and present them as well as possible with the gear available at our disposal within our budget (i.e. no, we don't own a top of the range Canon EOS-1D X though it'd be nice..), and the fact that we've had a fair few feature bikes on Bike Exif means we must be doing something right.
Nick's beautiful Baines Imola was up there last week, and got a very positive reaction.
Check it out here: http://www.bikeexif.com/ducati-900-supersport
Here's a couple more shots that didn't make it into the mag. Still one of the most enjoyable Italian bikes I've ridden.
Thursday, 1 December 2011
Tuesday, 29 November 2011
We spotted Radical Ducati's slinky little Ducati 50 a good couple of years ago, and featured it proudly in Issuer One of the mag in May 2010 - now it's up on Bike Exif, the holy grail of nice bike shots.
Original blog post here
Full feature on the bike build in Issue One here, or click on the Issue One cover on the right, to buy it...
Sunday, 27 November 2011
Friday, 25 November 2011
Then we all retired to our local village pub afterwards. It has recently been bought by the locals to be run as a free house, and Chris was instrumental in this. And there on the bar when we all piled in was a beer pump handle bearing the words 'Triffic', which was Chris's favourite expression. And it's been decided that this new and lovely, nutty ale, brewed just up the road and named in honour of Chris, will be kept on pump as tribute.
And I for one shall be downing pints of it regularly, starting this evening, in tribute to Chris.
Cheers Chris! Triffic!
Monday, 21 November 2011
By 1949, the Rumi Turismo 125 was the result of high art meeting molten metal and this is it - incredible, especially considering these were gloomy post-war years in a country heavily bombed and torn apart by political differences.
Add a fruity two-stroke parallel twin motor, and you have a motorcycle that looked, performed and sounded like no other in 1950. They also won races so weren't just for show. Like a bright star, Rumi appeared, burned brightly, and by 1962 disappeared. No wonder they're rare now.
We'll be featuring a Rumi or two in a future issue of the magazine.
Thursday, 17 November 2011
This is another bike I own and used to live in our kitchen as I had nowhere else to put it. My wife was very understanding, bless her.
It's a '72 Moto Guzzi Stornello Scrambler 125, in completely original and untouched condition. I got it for nothing really as part of a block purchase of a few bikes while living in Italy. It's a single cylinder four stroke, really simple and robust. I cleaned it, oily ragged it, changed the oil, put on a new battery and off it went. Brought it back to the UK and used it to ride round London for a year. Lovely!
Wednesday, 16 November 2011
Cutter's been riding for 30 years but this is also his first bike build, and as always we at the mag love and encourage the fact it was done in a shed at the bottom of the garden - in Cutter's case, the Chicken Shack. What a result! Read his blog here and learn more. Thanks too to Graham and Barry.
Full feature in the next issue of ITALIAN MOTOR magazine.