Velocette LE MK3 1960

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Page 2

On these pages you'll find pictures of some bikes I've owned and ridden and what I thought of them.

(Click on the thumbnails to see a larger Picture)

Page: 1, 2, (back)

Velocette LE MkII

This is a more recent acquisition (I've only had it for 17 years). Mine is very similar to the one in the picture (I can't find a decent photo of mine). It is a late 1956 model and for those of you who don't know about them here are a few details:

The engine is a 200cc water cooled flat twin side valve, hand start with a 3 speed hand change gear box and a shaft drive. Although it only has a top speed of around 50 mph (at 85 mpg) it is quite fun to ride around town and quiet country roads. But as it cannot keep up with modern traffic it can be a bit hairy traveling on busy main Roads.

Due to it's age it is now undergoing restoration.

Harley Davidson Road King Classic

Ok I admit it I'm a Harley fan. Yes I know that the old ones vibrated fit to remove your fillings. But have you ridden one of the new Harleys with the isolastic mounted engine. If you haven't then I suggest you try it (unless you're a race rep nut cause you won't like it as it is no rocket ship). Having tried one at the 1998 BMF Show I was most impressed, it didn't vibrate and traveling above the legal limit was no hassle at all, the brakes worked too.

Sunbeam

The Sunbeam S7 (left) and S8 (right). 500cc inline twin, shaft drive with isolastic mounted engine. I last rode one of these (S7) in the late 70's and although it was not a fast machine I was impressed with it's smoothness and comfort.

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Ariel VB 600

This is a 600cc side valve single, a big plodder with bags of torque a bike that will take you anywhere, just as long as you've got plenty of time because with a usable top speed of 55mph (any faster and your eyeballs vibrate) it's no rocket.

The version I had in the late 70's was a 59 model with swing arm rear suspension (the photo is of an earlier model). Quite rare now, I can't remember when I last saw one on the road.

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Ok now for something more upto date.

The Kawasaki AR50, a restricted learner bike. Good for learners who want a lean and hungry look. Can be easily derestricted and tuned which is why people race them.

Got this one for my son Jon as his first bike, he road it to death.

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Yamaha FZ 400

Of all the jap bikes I've ridden this is the one that's impressed me most, 400cc's and capable of 120+.

I'd never ridden anything like this before, once you get the engine spinning the performance is phenominal. The only down side is that the riding position is an uncompromising racers crouch, so riding at legal speeds kills your wrists. The only way to comfortably ride it is flat out. So sadly it had to go before I lost my licence.

But boy what fun!

©Spen2008