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  1. #1
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    Default The one that got away!

    Ive only been into bikes for about 10 years now but when I jumped in I went in deep real quick. I've had a ton of old Hondas cb350 175 and other Japanese bikes in between old Yamahas, suzuki and then into a handful of Evo Sportsters a 62 Ironhead Chopper couple rigid Sportsters and Evo Softail, my shovelhead. I always buy a bike with the intention to make a few bucks on it but as long as I break even I just enjoy riding it for a few months and then selling it when I need a few bucks back in my bank to help fund the project bikes I'm working on. Of all the ones I've had my paws on for a little while the one I wish I would have kept was this 1978 kick only Ironhead. It was a short drive from Charleston to Myrtle Beach South Carolina to pick this thing up for $1,600 running and riding with a good set of tires. This bike seemed to have that's soul that people talk about old bikes having like it had some experience under its belt. It also had such a sweet feel and sound just like out of an old B biker movie. The nicest part on the bike was the Corbin seat! Trailered it to Birmingham for Barber festival and road It to and from camp and enjoyed the Alabama hills. It was actually one of the first bikes that I didn't want to chop up or change at all it just felt cool like it was even amongst all the choppers. This was only just a few years ago. Sold it for exactly what i paid for it* after only having it less than a year. Im not a good business man and get annoyed with the Craigslist hustle so cash was king when someone actually shows up to do the deal. Now...id much rather have it in the garage, just like it was, than that $1600 in my bank account. Guess I'm just getting sentimental today!

    Which one do you wish you kept?



  2. #2
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    * in my best Farmall voice* "Having sentimental attachment to a piece of soul-less machinery is a fool's game!"
    For me, I guess my '72 Norton 810 Dunstall. It was my first street bike and I was a big deal 18yo.

  3. #3
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    The Sporty in my avatar, really wish I had kept that one

  4. #4

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    Having a sentimental attachment to a soulless piece of machinery proves you have a soul. But in my experience, that attachment is accrued over years.

    I hear you, BlackCloud, some bikes are just better than others. I had a Triumph in the seventies that was way more than the sum of its parts. It just felt "right." But I never formed the sentiment attachment to it that I did for the old family car, for instance.

    Jim

  5. #5
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    Must say out of the seventeen Sporties that I have owned in my lifetime ...
    The XR-1000 should have been a keeper ...

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    Although .... This 75 CH that I spun together was also perhaps a keeper ...
    It wasn't a fast scooter, but I loved how well it rode...

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    Then again my 72 CH seen a world of miles ....

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    Does a K-Model count .. ??

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    Last edited by Dragstews; 12-15-2019 at 10:51 AM.

  6. #6
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    My '88 1200 sportster. I had years of fun , spent 3 months stripping and rebuilding it, then sold it after one more summer.

  7. #7
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    My '75 Kawasaki H1, which was my first bike.

    That three cylinder two-stroke was just evil.

    It'd lift the front wheel in third gear if you weren't careful.

    I learned to respect the machine after that.

    Which is one reason why I'm still here today.

  8. #8
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    Default

    /Users/donaldbranscom/Desktop/Color-corrected.jpg

    A color corrected photo for you.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Color-corrected.jpg  

  9. #9
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    the two bikes I wish I was able to keep were a 1949 Panther 600 I built in 1977, had it about 5 years and only sold it for my first WLA45,.. yea the Harley was a no brainer but still wish I was able to have kept it, and there was my 45 Magnum I built about 8 years ago, that I had to sell to pay for my Moms Funeral,... she deserved a good send off so don't mind, it had to go ..
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails 223.jpg   222.jpg   magnum rebuild 37.jpg   magnum rebuild 34.jpg  

  10. #10
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    Every one I ever got rid of

  11. #11
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    This guy, sooooo fast, monster torque, very comfortable, smooth.


    this was me and one of my buds back when I was about 20, man wish i still had those guns.

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    All the above except the Panther are easy to replace (Dunstall bits aren't too difficult to source, and the XR 1000 community seems to buy 'em, not ride 'em, then resell them), so the real question is if they were that good, where's the BETTER one (IIRC the old Easyriders term was "leg wettin') ya'all could easily whip up in your sleep after years more experience? Ya now know how to install "soul".

    If Sportsters get any cheaper people will be forcing you to take theirs at gunpoint. It practically rains Ironheads in the US and four speed Evos are plentiful and cheap most places.

    A slight twinge of nostalgia at callously pimping off your first love for destruction by equine ravishment at a Tijuana donkey show is one thing, but as mechanics we don't have much excuse for not having what we want....unless we don't really want it that much because we have one or multiple better rides we would actually RIDE more often.
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    Last edited by farmall; 12-17-2019 at 12:19 PM.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by markwade74 View Post
    Every one I ever got rid of
    Maybe why I have 10 now, js.

    I mean, yes I have let many go, but the ones I have kept fill a niche in my mind on what I want to have.
    Last edited by 10scDust; 12-18-2019 at 6:13 AM.

  14. #14
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    Hey Farmall - I have a feeling we are here for the same reasons. We think we can make a better FXR and the purists thumb their noses at it like a shiney stock FXR is special. Seen one, seen 'em all. I'm sure the chopper guys here don't even care.HaHa!
    As far as building a custom Norton, It has always been a dream and I am getting near the end of what I want to do to my FXR so hopefully... soon.
    Maybe some sort of a tracker/ street fighter that I can hit the dirt roads with.

  15. #15
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    If I was gonna flog something vintage-style on fire roads I'd do an Evo Sporty Dirtster/scrambler since it's a much tougher motorcycle with a considerably thicker frame (remember Commando frames are near tinfoil for weight) and stronger components all around, cheaper to buy and trivially cheap to hotrod by comparison. xlforum has some cool examples.

    Much love for my Nortons but they're delicate as a wine glass compared to Sporties. Alternate option, a Triumph 650 since there are so many takeout engines blowing 'em up is affordable and the OIF variety are cheap used without original sheet metal and sit low stock. Nortons are more expensive acquire (roughly twice typical Triumph 650 cost) and to break. OTOH a period cafe (Dunstall, Rickman etc) is perfect for a Norton and they look fine as stock-ish Roadsters or Interstates (if you don't mind the large tank).

    About seven or nine grand between acquisition and axle-to-axle overhaul gets a Commando or Atlas, Turnips about three or four. Evo Sporties are in the teens needing minor or no work beyond snatching whatever stock shit ya don't want off them and a handlebar and tire swap.

    All of the above are hopelessly brutal to the rider compared to a DRZ or other somewhat current dual purpose machine because of hideously bad frame geometry and no suspension travel worth mentioning, and DRZs etc make nice supermotos and trackers. They look nice parked though.

  16. #16
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    I miss my FXR. It was the best bike I owned and rode x country on it and never let me down once. I sold it to fund a van build which I also sold so it hurts knowing I maybe should’ve kept it. Oh well. The guy who bought it loved the FXR as much as I did so that made me feel better.

    Ps that red van is real cool!

  17. #17
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    This 1963 Panhead Police Special. In 1993 I was just getting out of working on cars for the last 15 years or so. My brother had this Panhead with a bad first gear or a 1991 1200 sportster for sale for $5500.00 for either one. I had rewired the bike for him and got everything working. I always wanted a Harley and had been riding his on and off for about 3 years . I loved the Panhead but didn't know anything about working on bikes and was burned out on working on cars. I asked him if I could think about it for a week and I'd buy one or the other. He said there was no rush they weren't going anywhere. After biting my nails for the week wondering weather I wanted something reliable or venture into new ground with my wrenches I finally said to myself. " Fuck it , I'd be crazy not to buy that Pan."
    I came home and he was laughing on my answering machine telling me how he sold it on the day I was going to buy it. That taught me a very valuable lesson that day - Trust no one and pounce on what you want.
    My New Years resolution is to forgive him in 2020.
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  18. #18
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    Fucking photo editor on this site blows. Never any rhyme or reason you can take a pic the same way every time and you have a 33% chance of having it show up correctly.
    Maybe that's what "being a 33er" stands for.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by 47str8leg View Post
    Fucking photo editor on this site blows. Never any rhyme or reason you can take a pic the same way every time and you have a 33% chance of having it show up correctly.
    Maybe that's what "being a 33er" stands for.
    What exactly are you doing?????? What are you using to post a pic????? You know a phone PC what?????? What are you being told is wrong??????? I will try and help as I have NO problems what so ever posting a pic here on CC..............

  20. #20
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    I take a picture the same way on my phone every time and upload it. Gets it right 1/3rd of the time . Other two times are sideways or upside down .Don't see a way to rotate them either.
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    Last edited by 47str8leg; 12-31-2019 at 9:51 PM.

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