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Thread: The story of your first bike.

  1. #1
    2 Wheeled Troubador oldhway's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jenunn View Post
    Like Oldhway my father (Mom died when I was 12) absolutely forbid talk of any motorcycle in our household. I had been lusting for a motorcycle since age 6 after a ride on the back of a cousin's HD. When my father died unexpectedly when I was 17 I was pretty much on my own. Late summer following his passing I was living with my sister in Ann Arbor and playing drums in various bands. I wasn't making much money and couldn't afford a car. I happened to see an ad in the local paper placed by the equipment manager of a newly formed band (The Stooges of Iggy Pop fame) offering to trade a 1959 BMW R59 for a set of drums. It was a win win situation...Iggy needed drums and I needed to put as much distance between my sister and I as I could. As I had never actually driven a motorcycle before, the ride home after the trade was pretty interesting, but the R59 was a pretty tame beast and I managed to make it safely. After a couple of weeks of self training I decided I was ready for the road. I bought an old leather jacket in a Goodwill store, threw a couple of pairs of blue jeans in an old duffel an attached the pack to the seat with a couple of old belts. It was 1967.....riots in Detroit, war in Viet Nam was in full swing, and the Rolling Stones still couldn't get any satisfaction and I had met a girl that summer who lived in Sarasota, FL. It was a cooler than normal October morning. Leaves were falling as was a light rain and I headed south................
    Good stuff. Now you have me waiting for part II........
    Steve Marquardt

  2. #2
    Has the GS-Lust The_Veg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oldhway View Post
    Good stuff. Now you have me waiting for part II........
    +1!
    2012 R1200GS
    "If you can't fix it with a hammer, it's electrical." -somebody's dad
    http://www.thethingaboutcars.com/

  3. #3
    Firefighter Randy
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    Thumbs up First Bike

    I was intoduced to bikes by my uncle who showed up at our house on a new 650
    BSA. Wow, what a machine. He took me for a ride to my grandparents house by
    going on the twisty backroads. Its scary to see the road getting closer to you as
    you lean over. Years later, as a much more mature 14 year old, I tried to talk my folks into helping me buy a motorcycle. I finally won and the trophy was a '62
    98cc Ducati without an exhaust pipe. It sounded like it was underwater. My first
    corner sort of included a neighbor's yard as well as the entire road. This beauty lasted about 2 months before its mysterious death. I must have pushed it more than a mile trying to start it. Later, in the family basement, I tried to disassemble
    the engine and found that none of Dad's wrenches would work (who ever heard of metric). I got so frustrated, I threw a wrench at the bike, it bounced off the front tire and hit me in the forehead. I got rid of that bike and didn't get another
    until '69 when I graduated high school and had to have the Kawasaki 500 triple.
    After learning to be a mechanic on this bike for a year and 6 months, it was traded
    at a dealership for a new '71 R75/5 BMW. I haven't been the same since.

  4. #4
    I Used to Be Someone sheridesabeemer's Avatar
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    10 Years Ago...



    About a week after obtaining my motorcycle endorsement, my office mate, a Yamaha rider, told me he passed a BMW for sale on the way to work.
    We rode over at lunch to check it out. I didn't know a K bike from an R bike.
    But I knew it was a BMW and was purty. It was an 11 year old K75 with 38K miles on it.
    Sometimes ignorance is bliss. That lunch time trip was the extent of my shopping and research.
    It was in my price range and that was good enough for me. My friend took it out for a spin, after all I had a 3 day old license and all of 5 minutes experience on a 250cc. He thought it was ok. I bought it. We trucked it home a few days later. I promptly dropped it like a million times learning to do a U turn.

    My first bike is now 21 years old with 86K miles, it's no longer intimidating tall nor heavy and I love riding it as much as ever.

    Last Weekend
    Gail Hatch
    SheRidesABeemer's Blog
    05 R12GS
    87 K75CT

  5. #5
    Registered User Rod Sheridan's Avatar
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    It was 1974, and I purchased a used 1973 Triumph Bonneville, despite my mothers objections.

    The bike was certainly a learning experience, although being a slow learner, I later traded in the Triumph (and all my cash) to purchase a 1975 Norton Commando, that I still own.

    The present ride is a 1976 R90/6 that was purchased to replace my previous 74 R90/6, which was killed by an SUV, just shy of 500,000Km.

    It took almost a year to find a replacement R90/6, which was the unhappy offspring of a divorce. When I gave the cheque to the woman who owned it, she started crying.

    I felt so bad that I offered to loan her the bike for the occasional trip or ride. Normally people only cry when they try to cash my cheques.

    As for my mother, 34 years later she still asks me when I'm going to smarten up and give up motorcycles. My answer, hopefuly not until I'm dead.

    I guess I'm lucky that Diann rides (an R60/7), it certainly makes spending time and money on this hobby easier.

    Keep up the stories, I enjoy reading them.............Rod.
    Last edited by RODSHERIDAN; 08-06-2008 at 04:39 PM. Reason: Forgot what my age was.
    Work is the curse of the riding class

  6. #6
    WDaigle
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    Great stories everyone, keep em coming

  7. #7
    TNSTAAFL Troutluck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SheRidesABeemer View Post
    My first bike is now 21 years old with 86K miles, it's no longer intimidating tall nor heavy and I love riding it as much as ever.
    And you *still* have that windshield?
    Jack Pate | '09G650GS | '95 R100RT | Previously: '00R1100R, '87K75T
    NW Arkansawyer |
    BMWMOA #125430 | Fraternal Order of the Mudshark (FOM #0001)

  8. #8

    Part 2 - Rough cops, spiders, kind priests and gunrunners

    Quote Originally Posted by The_Veg View Post
    +1!
    I made a decision early on to avoid expressways though there weren't that may completed by 1967 anyway. I chose US 23 as a good route to follow in my journey to Florida, not that I put a lot of thought into it. I recall buying a map, looking at it briefly and chucking it into a waste basket. Too much planning would take the adventure out of any trip. My new (old) R59 had a dual seat so all my belongings, which included a duffel and a sleeping bag and a couple of cans of Dinty Moore were wrapped together in a plastic tarp and held in place by the aforementioned belts. I was in no hurry. A couple of hours earlier in the day I had been sitting in a morning class at Ann Arbor Pioneer High School staring out the window and now I was riding in the rain south of Toledo headed toward the sun. I had never been to Florida. My grandfather used to winter in Punta Gorda and would send us oranges and grapefruits every Christmas, but the farthest south I had ever traveled was to Nashville when I was 12 to attend a cousins wedding. The bike was running well and was pretty economical to operate, which was good because I had about $40.00 in my pocket as I recall. I had ridden a couple of times at night...enough to know that the headlight in the old bike did not provide much light, so my plan was to ride until dusk and find a place to camp. The rain eventually stopped, but I was pretty well soaked by the time I pulled into Portsmouth in Southern Ohio and started to look for a place to spend the night. At 17, sporting shoulder length hair and riding a motorcycle, I was pretty cautious about choosing a place to sleep....I didn't want Easy Rider Redux if you know what I mean. Safety in numbers. I recall finding a park in the center of town where I pulled my bike into a parking spot. Unpacking my gear I spread out my tarp and sleeping bag at the foot of a civil war monument......some general on a horse. I had one of the cans of stew for dinner.
    It was about 8:00 or 8:30 by then and the town and the park were pretty much deserted. I figured I'd get up with the sun and continue my trip south. I fell asleep pretty quickly. I slept longer than I anticipated and didn't hear the two police officers approach. The first kick woke me up, and took my breath away. The second caught me in the ribs and sent me scurrying on all fours. It was 1967 and this was not San Francisco...................

  9. #9
    535IS
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    Quote Originally Posted by RNowell View Post
    I got so frustrated, I threw a wrench at the bike, it bounced off the front tire and hit me in the forehead. I haven't been the same since. I got rid of that bike and didn't get another until '69 when I graduated high school and had to have the Kawasaki 500 triple. After learning to be a mechanic on this bike for a year and 6 months, it was traded
    at a dealership for a new '71 R75/5 BMW.
    There! Fixed!

  10. #10
    Registered User
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    I too had a Rupp at the age of 14 or 15. My best friend next door had a dirt bike and we rode in his back field. Round and round and round. It wasn't until my late 30's when this same friend had a Suzuki 650 he had bought in Texas and brought it home to Connecticut. It had been sitting in his basement and he sold it to me for 200 bucks. I took the riders course, registered it (after fixing it and getting it running) and off I went.
    My wife at the time (now ex) thought what a hoot and got her license. We found her a 1981 Honda-matic, 2-speed automatic, 400cc engine. We even took our son Oliver, our four legged son, with us in a book bag hung on her chest. (Lots of padding ) He thought it was a hoot too . Actually she could have jumped out of building and he be right behind her

    During our divorce I gave the bike back to my friend where it continues to rot in his basement. In 2005 I got the itch again and was living in Maine and visited a dealer in Falmouth (can't recall the name), saw a K1100 and fell in love with it. It had 82k on the ticker and now it has 103k or so.

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