Friday, April 8, 2011

My Bikes...up to the present

As mentioned in my last post, on this subject, my wife and I looked at new BMWs in 1985, but at $14,000 plus they were just too expensive. Late in that year the NZ Government announced that a duty charged on imported motorcycles would be removed as from the 1st of January 1986. I had no idea how much difference this would make to the price. On the 2nd of January (a public holiday in NZ) we went for a ride on the GS850 to Wellington. Whilst there we looked through the window of the BMW dealership. On the floor was a new R80RT. Although the new single rear shock models were out, this was one of the last of the twin shock models. A sign on it had the $14,000 odd price tag crossed out and added below the words "NOW $9800".
"Wow", I said.
"Why don't you get one. You've always wanted one." said my wife.
She didn't have to tell me twice. Two days later we travelled to Palmerston North, visited the BMW dealer, and ordered a new R80RT. As I mentioned earlier the new model was already available, but these were around $1600 dearer. Finances were a bit critical so I chose the cheaper option. I would have liked a blue one ,but there was only red available. On the 9th of January we went to Palmerston North and picked up our new machine. 25 years later we still own the same bike
Stopped for a rest in the Manawatu Gorge, which is one route from here to Palmerston North.

On a nice winding motorcycling road within half an hour of my home. Sheepskin seat covers are an item I rarely travel without. 

Summertime in the Wairarapa (the region Masterton is in) can be very dry.

Castlepoint Beach is about 45 minutes drive from here. This photo taken late in the day. Castle Rock (that big lump behind the bike) was named by Captain Cook, who thought it looked like a castle from out at sea. I'm not really a beach person, but this has got to be one of my favourites.

Parked at Hood Aerodrome.  Sometimes referred to as Masterton Airport now that we have a regular air service.

One of our first trips on the Beemer was a quick trip around the South Island. This is on the Lewis Pass road.

One of the very long bridges over the very wide Waimakariri River in the South Island.

In 2004 with 120,000kms on the clock it was time to do a bit of maintenance. The gearbox needed new bearings, the exhaust was rusting out and the paint was fading. I had a complete stainless exhaust system installed, removed /installed the gearbox myself, but got a BMW mechanic to do the bearings and had the bike repainted in blue. The colour is actually a Ford colour called "Galaxie". It may not be standard, but I like it. Speaking of non-standard, I was never happy with the fact that many parts on the bike were painted black, whereas the pannier racks and crash-bars were chrome. So at the time of painting I got chrome plating on the carrier, the rear indicator stem, the front mudguard mount/fork brace and the handle for lifting it on to the main stand. There is a separate post on the maintenance and repairs I have endured.
I have now covered 160,000kms and if you think that is not much in 25 years then please consider in that time I have purchased my own home (and all the upkeep that entails) and fathered and help raise two daughters who are now grown up and left the nest. I now only register the bike in the Summer except for this year when finances have been a struggle with me having been made redundant in February 2009 and not having  managed to find full-time permanent work since.
This is the first time in over 30 years I haven't been on a motorcycle in the Summer.
The painting of my BMW at the top of this blog under my photo, is a copy of artwork done by my daughter. I thought it was a great effort for someone who is not mechanically minded. Check out her art (amongst other things) on


The Old Vic said...

I'm glad to see that you have a BMW, Trev. I also ride a BMW, an R850R. It's a 2003 model but I bought it "new" in 2005 and have now done just on 90,000km on it. Makes a change from driving an International!

Trev Jones said...

You embarass me with the mileage you have covered Vic. Having been out of full-time work for a few months, I put my rego on hold. First time I haven't ridden a bike in the Summer for over 30 years. Now working 5 days a week again (2 jobs), so should be back in action next Summer.