The Rough Draft

If you can't go through it. Go around it.

I had every intention of going to the Motorcycle Spring Show early on Saturday but my Mini Cooper S decided to have an engine issue about five minutes from my house, which required me to turn around and limp it to my mechanic’s just round the corner. Then by the time I’d gotten my wife’s car and got to the venue, the lineup to get inside was well out into the parking lot. I had my son with me and the plan was to get in, run around for a couple of hours and then drop him off at his Saturday activity program. Well obviously, that didn’t happen, so we grabbed some lunch and I dropped him off at his thing and then picked him up later that day. Seeing as the show was going to run till 9pm, I decided to go in the afternoon.

This was the better choice.

This is the last show of the year before riding season starts and all of the usual suspects are there. I managed to pick up a copy of, “Road,” a documentary about the Dunlops and their Road Racing history narrated by Liam Neeson. It is both inspiring and tragic and I highly recommend you give it a watch if you can get your hands on it. Colin as he usually does, took off into the crowd. This time I wasn’t as worried about losing him as the Canadian Tire Motorsports Track pavillion was in the center of the venue and he would circle back to it about every twenty minutes.

As is the case with any bike show, you see things you like, thing’s you’d like to own and things that just sort of make you shake your head. I’ve always been a form follows function sort of guy. I can appreciate a street bike made into a cafe racer or a custom built off road bike. I can even appreciate cruisers kitted out for ultimate lounging travel. Choppers however have always left me a little confused. I’m not talking about the chop jobs where guys have cut the bike apart to try a new esthetic, I’m talking about the chrome and custom fitting monsters, the Tuttles were always struggling to complete. Because for me, at the end of the day. you still need to be able to ride the bike for more than a mile and not be reduced to tears by the brutality of the ride.

I get that they’re sort of an extreme art installation revolving around a bike motor but some do leave you scratching you head wondering what the inspiration was for the final form. Which is why this post is started with what used to be a Buell 1200. You’ll also note in the picture that the design won an award. I didn’t look to see for what. Maybe for best use of wood applique on a motorcycle?

Ultimately to me, there’s nothing offered on this bike that doesn’t make me sad for the loss of the Buell it came out from.

I’m not going to bore you with snap after snap of new bikes because for the most part they’re better covered in the bike mags and I’m still working with my 04 V-Strom so I’m not in the market for a new bike. Oh I’ll sit on this or that, just to see how the ergo’s feel but really to get a feel for a bike you need to ride it on the road and seeing as it’s still -11C outside, that’s going to have to wait for a few more weeks.

There was a very nice Triton in the British Bikes Display.

It did seem however that turnout was down this year to the venue, so not as many older bikes to see as there have been in past years.

On the way out we passed the Elklas booth. It looks like they sell an aftermarket body kit of the 250 and 300 Ninjas. Their kits, look to be made from fairly substantial aircraft grade anodized aluminum. The end result is part street fighter, part stealth look. Though I am a fan of mud guards.

I’m not going to say I’m a total fan of the look but it does give me ideas about doing some similar fairing work on my Strom to thin it out a bit.

With the last of the shows now behind me, I’m looking forward to finally getting some road time with me bike again, now it’s warming up.

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