It was around 1981, my riding buddy Jim and I were riding around Vancouver and generally enjoying our day on two wheels. The previous year we both purchased matching bikes, brand new Suzuki GS1000L's, mine in Burgundy and his was Blue. Back then we mainly rode around the lower mainland. Riding consisted of merely commuting to work and weekend excursions to Harrison, Horseshoe Bay or perhaps Bellingham. Two years earlier I purchased a new GS400L, then the next year I upgraded to the 4 cylinder GS550L, and then I traded for the GS1000L. Of course, all these bikes were the same colour, burgundy. I also had a matching burgundy helmet with gold stripes. I don't know what happened but the dealer had just received a new shipment of Suzuki's which included the GS1100L which was the fastest production bike of the year with TSCC and 4 valves per cyclinder. I had to have it and what good fortune that it arrived in burgundy, my preferred colour. So with the GS1000L not even two months old I rode away with another new bike. I sucessfully upgraded to my 4th bike without the CEO knowing. It sort of looked something like this . . .
(facsimilie taken from the internet)
Mine had engine case covers, slipsteamer windscreen, oil cooler, throttle lock and sissy bar. It also came standard with tachometer and GPI: gear position indicator. It had more than enough power for me.
We had just finished breakfast and decided to visit the local BMW dealer who was having a clearance sale. This was Phillip Funnel who had moved from their long time East Hastings Street location to Victoria Drive just north of Hastings Street.
This was where I bought my first riding jacket, a Belstaff Trialmaster professional
(faded white tag is still affixed)
There was nothing special about riding apparel back then, no armour in the elbows or shoulders, nothing but a waxed cotton jacket which had to be oiled in order to make it waterproof. The jacket was fine when it was new but as it accumulated road grime it had a distinctive smell. Because of the smell I didn't really use it that much as I must have had other leather jackets to wear. I even had a favourite blue jean type denim jacket
There was a Belstaff logo on the right pocket, and also on the left shoulder
My jacket is in very good condition considering that it is over 30 years old. There are virtually no wear marks, all buttons are there, including the original zipper, but some stitching on the lower part of the zipper needs re-inforcement .
My style has a corduroy type of neck liner which snaps around your neck to keep the wind out
The liner is not removeable and has a checkered pattern
I am a hoarder and in the midst of trying to get rid of stuff I no longer need . I find that it's difficult to dispose of stuff that may have value but I was thinking of going through my closet and culling things that I have not worn for a year or so, which included this jacket, until I saw this . . .
I had no idea that people were looking for vintage motorcyle attire. I did a quick search on eBay and found a couple of listings
Here is a new reproduction, Made in Italy
and here is an original used one from the 70's
I had no idea i was sitting on a gold mine. Better than RED fishing shorts, EH ?
Also Geoff down in Coromandel was interested in photos of the Caterham Lotus 7 . The only Caterham, Lotus Super 7 facility outside of the UK is in Duncan, BC. The car is handbuilt by David Saville Peck. Duncan is located about an hour north of Victoria on Vancouver Island. I have had the pleasure of visiting the factory a few years ago and watched a car under construction. Recently (during August 2010) there was a Lotus 7 gathering at a private residence in North Vancouver where I presumed that David Saville Peck would be in attendance. I was hoping to find him there so I could snap a few photos, as I am not a Lotus owner and probably be kicked out. He was there and I asked permission from the host so all was okay. Here is the website for David's facility
I also have another friend who is currently building a Lotus 7 replicar so maybe by the time Geoff gets here we could go over and see his progress. I believe that the chassis' have already been welded up. By chassis' I mean that he and his friends are building 3 at the same time, and they are going to use them for slaloming.
Here is a teaser photo of a yellow Lotus Super 7, for my buddy Geoff in NZ