This was the weekend of the Vancouver motorcycle show. I wasn't really planning on going but complimentary tickets fell into my hands so we were off to Abbotsford
From home it takes a little over one hour to get there through a convoluted route south and east taking backroads so as to avoid the freeway
I would say that from my experience visiting the Progressive International Motorcycle show down in Seattle the past two years that our show is many times larger with all the manufacturers in attendance. This includes: Triumph, BMW, Harley-Davidson, Aprilia, Motoguzzi, Ducati, Can-Am (among many others) and many accessories suppliers. I was interested to see two bikes which were just introduced and I knew would be there . . . the Triumph Tiger 800 and the Yamaha Tenere.
You all know the old saying, It just starts with a look and swinging your leg over . . . While my bike is too new to think about changing for another one I was really, really tempted to put a down payment on a bike today to hold incoming stock, if only Mrs Skoot wasn't with me. I must confess that many years ago I had a red Suzuki and within the span of only 6 months I had traded up 3 times until I ended up with the Suzuki GS1100. She never noticed and I never said anything. The trick was to make sure all the bikes were the same colour. So I was thinking that if I got a black one then all would be right with the world. One day about a year after I got the 3rd bike she finally came out to look at it and mentioned that it appeared to look larger than she thought. Whew, close call
I will say that in our household I have left in the morning only to come home with a different car many times. I have owned nearly 15 bikes since I started riding back in the early 60's and nearly that many cars.
With the exception of the Tiger, I will try not to duplicate what SonjaM has already posted .
Many times when I attend motorcycle shows I just stare and look at all the machines and hardly ever sit on them. In Seattle I never sat on any motorcycle. I have not taken any bikes on any demo rides even when dealers have open houses. I have an internal philosophy which prevents me from doing so unless I was actively looking for a bike and that particular model was under consideration. I also don't ride bikes belonging to others.
BUT this year was different and I came out of my mould and was trying them all out for size. I know many people looking at small dual sports as a second bike but I think that anything under 300cc is too small for occasional freeway use
but this one looked like it might fit the bill, or perhaps a Suzuki DR400, which I also sat on. I have a friend who has a Sherpa 250 and likes to take challenging forest service roads.
Honda had a neat display for their new 250R where you could lean the bike into corners
Notice anything missing here ? This is Honda's new . . .
Look MA, no clutch lever. It is fully automatic with paddle shifters . Here's a view of the cockpit
There are two modes: Fully automatic where the transmission will shift up and down the same as in a car, and manual mode where you use the paddles to shift up and down manually, but without a clutch to worry about.
The RCMP: Royal Canadian Mounted Police also had their usual display there. They use HD's and "R" type Beemers. Not those wimply K bikes with outdated cooling systems
I was making my way around the building sitting on many bikes along the way and my eyes finally spotted the Triumph Tiger, so naturally I had to try it out
I'm not really sure I like it, and it is very tall for my short legs. As SonjaM mentioned, Pacific Yamaha-BMW has been rebadged to PacificMotoSports and they will became the new Triumph Dealer, as well as also carrying the other famous Italian brands.
I am very attracted to both Yellow and Orange bikes so naturally I had to sit on this one
As I was perched on the seat making those motor sounds I was imagining the scenery of NZ flashing by. I am not sure I was riding on the left side of the road or not. Those KIWIs do everything backwards
The dash appears very spartan and there is not much bulk ahead of the handlebars like on the V-strom but you get a very good view of the blurred road ahead as I am sure that Geoff will attest
Here's a decked out Honda Veradero
I did manage to look at one before I purchased the V-strom but they seemed very heavy and overpriced . The Strom has a loyal following and there are many accessories available for it
I went down to the HD: Harley-Davison display and sat on a few down there. The new Nightster, and found this bike which sort of looked like the one Gary rode across the USA
When Gary was having problems shipping his bike back to the UK I was dreaming of riding it back to NY as a favour for him but I had never ridden a HD, or cruiser type bike before. It seemed very heavy for my frail, weak frame. I don't know how anyone could learn how to balance on it with its long wheelbase.
Right next to it was a custom HD single seater. I liked this one
There is no room for any storage but it would be good for going to Starbucks to have a coffee and pose with the other bikes
There was an Ace Cafe display with period British bikes, and period girls perched too, courtesy of the BMOC: British Motorcyle Owner's Club
This is a closer view for Geoff, who admires these machines of his youth. I had a hard time trying to crop the girl out
I don't know what this is but the V configuration of the engine was very attractive
and also, it is Yellow
There was a display of custom bikes, and I just had to snap a photo of this beautifully restored Ariel tucked in the corner, nearly hidden from view
I was specifically looking for a pair of gloves to replace my tattered ones which are falling apart when I noticed these very soft deer skin gloves. Not as good as the pair Jackie uses but they felt so very nice. I heard some one mention that they were $60. but I don't really know as i didn't want to wait for service.
I managed to get these cheapo leather ones, which also felt very soft
They were so cheap I had to purchase two pairs. One is short perforated leather on top for summer use, and the other are gauntlet type for cooler weather. Most other vendors were selling for over $50. but I snagged these two for only $20. each including Tax.
Other than that I only purchased a power cable for my heated gloves which I purchased two years ago. Heated gloves are warmer than heated grips as there are heated wires along each finger.
I was also glad to bump into Mr Lee who is the distributor for IMC and had a booth for rider communication.
I already have helmet speakers and boom mic and use FRS/GMRS radios, but I wanted to delete having to connect the wires to my helmet everytime I got off the bike. He has a bluetooth receiver and with the BTA: BlueTooth Adapter I can stream from the GMRS, satellite radio and also pair with my BT phone and GPS.
Yes, I am making plans for 2011 and I want to be able to communicate with others "on the road". I think GMRS radios are the way to go with larger groups as BT is only limited to two riders.
Nearly forgot, if I were purchasing a bike today it would be this
perhaps more impressions on a subsequent post. Just have to make sure it comes in Black