Friday, 29 April 2011

Right Royal Rarities at the Ace Cafe - this Sunday

If all goes to plan and thanks to a good friend ITALIAN MOTOR is going to have a couple of right rare bikes on our stand at the Ace Cafe Italian Day this Sunday - one of which will be featured in Issue Four of the mag which we're working on right now. Here's a couple of shots in the meantime...

Wednesday, 27 April 2011

ITALIAN MOTOR at Ace Cafe' Italian Bike Day - this Sunday 1st May

We'll be back to our old stomping ground of North London down at the Ace Cafe' this Sunday the 1st of May for the annual Italian Bike Day - from 9am to 5pm. If the weather's decent, which the forecast says it will be, there's always a decent turnout of very different typed and ages of bikes and people. Hope the rusty old Ducati 750GT turns up, one of the best Italian bikes out there.

We'll be there from 9am onwards, flogging the mag and saying hello to old friends so drop by...
More details here

Thursday, 21 April 2011

Last call for the Horsham Piazza Italia - tomorrow

Last call for the goings on at Horsham Piazza tomorrow, Friday. Weather is set Mediterranean sunny, there'll be loads of Italian bikes, cars, food, er, pasta, beer, wine, and anything else from that wonderful country. Ok, so this is a pic of Piazza Navona in Rome, but you get the idea.

All info here, come on down and say buon giorno:

Coke adds life

John's Guzzi gearbox internals after a good soaking in Coca Cola, a going over with a wire brush and a good dribble of gearbox oil. Lovely!!

Monday, 18 April 2011

Does my gearbox need new bearings?

That was question of the day today as John W sent me shots of a Guzzi gearbox he took off his workshop shelf and prised open. The dogs are now soaking in Coca-Cola, yes the proper real strong stuff, not the jekyll stuff from Asda or Tesco. Question is now how much will the Coke need filtering before mixing with rum?

John knows what he's doing (most of the time) - he must do, he built the superb Guzzi cafe' racer in Issue Two here

We'll report back on the Coke-soaked dogs soon...

Saturday, 16 April 2011

Trophy hunter - win one at Horsham Piazza next Friday!!

Because I'm someone that finds it easy to make life difficult for myself, I decided - after looking round at the plastic tat available for awards and trophies - to make my own. Damien Hurst I'm not, but I'm pleased with the results, and whoever wins them next Friday will receive a bespke one-off made with passion and lots of cups of tea. Hardwood base, genuine old school MV Agusta spares (thanks my friend Dorian for both!!) and my basic lockwiring skills have created these 'trophies'.

I'm awarding these on behalf of the magazine next Friday at 2.30pm sharp at Horsham Piazza Italia, see details here:

Categories are:




Looking forward to giving out the best special/custom most of all - see you there...

Thursday, 14 April 2011

Motorcycles only

Been away for a few days in the beautiful land of some of my forefathers, Herefordshire/Welsh border country. Came across this sign - can't ever remember ever seeing a government sign that said clearly  'No entry unless you're on a motorcycle', with the added bonus in this case that you can choose whether it be 'with or without sidecar'.

The trail looked so so inviting - I'll be back there one day with my old Guzzi Scrambler to ride it. And yes that funny language is Welsh.

Saturday, 9 April 2011

Horsham Piazza Italia V - 22/23/24 April 2011

We'll be there on the Friday 22nd April in the main bike square, and we'll be presenting three trophies made by our own fair hand, so completely individual pieces!) at 2.30pm sharp for:

best pre-1990 bike, best post-1990 bike, and best special/custom.

More info on the whole event here:

Thursday, 7 April 2011

Caning the new Moto Guzzi Stelvio and Norge

Just got back from the launch of the new Moto Guzzi Stelvio NTX 1200 and Norge 1200 in Tuscany, both kitted out with the newly revised 8 valve motors. I tried the 8 valve motor a couple of years ago on the Griso SE and thought it was a fantastic engine then - it's now even better. The Stelvio is an exceptional bike, and we were riding on roads north of Florence that in fact I quite well from my days of living out there - Passo della Consuma, Pontassieve and so on - lots of tight, tight bends that open out into long downhill stretches, then up again, great motorcycling roads. The Stelvio's handling is impeccable and I could really chuck it into corners with confidence and ease - I want one! The Norge is also a fine bike, but far softer as it's a tourer, but for a big bike with carrying capacity, still rides like a 250. I challenge anyone who thinks Guzzis are crap to try the Stelvio - I've ridden the BMW GS1200 and the Guzzi is a better bike.
Full review coming up in Issue Four....

Friday, 1 April 2011

Goodbye my friend it's time to go..

Us 'creative' types love Macs and I've used them for for over twenty years now. This G4 I had the longest, and it did me proud for 11 years. It lived through the scorching heat of Italy, its little fans fanning for all they were worth. It allowed me to put up my first website in the days before blogs, broadband, Facebook or Twitter, and send and receive good old 56k modem emails. It's been superseded twice now, by another G4 that quickly gave me problems and I sold it on,  and now I have a beautiful Rolls-Royce of a Mac with 27 inch screen and 1TB hard drive that is the most important tool in my life, and I adore it.

The poor G4 has sat under my desk for a couple of years, redundant, the memory tiny, and the hard drive useless. I even tried to recycle it but no one wanted it, and it's worth 20 pence on Ebay. So I ripped the hard drives out (I felt like I was ripping it's heart out while it was still beating..) and I took the poor G4 to the tip this morning, with almost (but not quite) a tear in my eye...