• Cameraderie, a friendly photography forum for photographers and camera enthusiasts!
    If you are looking for critique, tips, advice, buying recommendations, or just want to talk to fellow enthusiasts then join now for free!

New (motorized) Family Member

KillRamsey

Super Moderator
Jun 20, 2012
4,288
Hood River, OR
In 2004, just before I got married, a beloved coworker who had heard me rambling about missing the dirt bikes of my youth got me a 1980-something Suzuki GS300L, a road bike, albeit small and weak. I knew nothing about maintenance, so it gave me maybe a year of service, then died. I moved on to a Kawasaki 500cc cruiser, which, while not “my style” bike, I kinda loved. It behaved wonderfully, and we toured New England one summer together before I graduated grad school and upgraded to a brand new (!) 2007 Yamaha FZ6. That bike and I commuted through Boston and its suburbs for 5 years, 5 days a week, most of the year. That’s where I got good at not getting killed. I learned how to push a bike when it’s required, and how to have an abundance of caution. How to navigate through flocks of enormous steel boxes full of gadgets and distracted, bored, angry drivers. In Boston, you get good, or you get a really close look at the asphalt.

Sample image from motocamping, which we did every year for 9 years…

KBRX1002 by gordopuggy, on Flickr

Then, 2 and a half years ago, we moved to the west coast. I thought “I’ll sell this Yamaha while it still has any value (51,000 miles), and then I won’t have to trailer it behind the moving truck. I’LL JUST PICK UP ANOTHER BIKE REAL QUICK once we get there.”

Life happened. Money vanished in lawsuits with a crooked landlord. Then a month ago, for my birthday, the wife surprised me by springing for a bike I had sent her a craigslist ad to check out. She went behind my back, contacted the seller, said “ignore him, I’m surprising him for his birthday” and gave him a deposit.

Then it snowed. A ton. No one could deliver, until this weekend. And suddenly, a 1981 Suzuki GS1000G (the shaft driven variant of the mighty GS1000 muscle bike) arrived…

KBRY8218 by gordopuggy, on Flickr

I immediately hopped on, cranked it up, and took off. Looking in the tank, I saw it was low, so I headed to a gas station. Several hundred feet from it, the bike coughed and died… I forgot to switch the tank to Reserve to get the last 3/4 gallon or so. Thus, I had to push my new bike the last 500 feet.

Amused pump attendant kid has never seen a fuel petcock before. KBRY8220 by gordopuggy, on Flickr

Full tank, starter button thumbed, and the bike positively roared to life, letting me know I need not worry any more. “THAT’S the noise it’s supposed to make,” said I, to the pump kid. Off we went, purring along back roads, through orchards, warily cornering around leftover gravel. The motor on this thing is …. heavenly. A torque monster, but a civilized one. All you might ever need, wherever you might need it. “Yes … this will do nicely.”

KBRY8230P by gordopuggy, on Flickr

KBRY8225P by gordopuggy, on Flickr

Got home, grinning uncontrollably. Went inside to look at my pics, saw the back of the bike in one, and realized …….. I have no license plate on the damned thing. No insurance. Not registered. Haaaaaa ha ha whoops. It’s parked now, til I fix that. BUT IT WORKS, and beautifully.

Here’s to more adventures.
 

KillRamsey

Super Moderator
Jun 20, 2012
4,288
Hood River, OR
Perhaps THE biggest reason we upped and moved so far away was the vastly lower number of knuckleheads out here. Deer, the occasional meth head, and stray corner gravel are my new enemies.

And thank you.
 

KillRamsey

Super Moderator
Jun 20, 2012
4,288
Hood River, OR
Rode it to work 2 days in a row - once to get it plated, then once to drop my daughter off at school / pick her up in the afternoon, back down to work, then home. So I've gone from 1 ride to 5 or 6. The bike is slowly shrinking, which is desperately needed. It gets a little smaller and lighter every time I ride it. I love how bikes do that. Back to a bicycle today, which I much prefer.

Yesterday morning coming in:

KBRY8306P by gordopuggy, on Flickr
 
My seat was different . I remember when I got it my feet would barely reach the ground. The dealership lowered it a bit for me and away I went. Don't remember if mine was an '81 or not but it was in that time. About 10yrs ago I went in to test drive a GX'r but wisely backed out. One reason I'm still alive today.
 

KillRamsey

Super Moderator
Jun 20, 2012
4,288
Hood River, OR
That seat isn't stock. And it's TALLER than stock, and I'm 5'5". Will make a lot of sense when I put a sidecar on it, but til then, it's not ideal. Comfy, but too tall. No GSXR for me, not tempting. My last bike was a 2007 Yamaha FZ6, which has the motor of a 600cc crotch rocket, slightly detuned for more torque, and a more upright position. We did 52k miles together, never a whiff of a problem.
 
Yes the rocket ships are not on my Radar, but the Suzuki V strom I think I would enjoy. Set it up for touring and drop me of in Wyoming or Montana or anywhere I didn't feel like I am a target. Florida is out of the question. Looked at the seat height at 33.? and that's pushing it for me. At 5'10" I have short legs.
 
Last edited:

Latest posts

Latest threads

Top Bottom