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Old 03-29-2014, 06:52 AM   #21
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Sorry about hijacking the thread, but I bet you could carry a whole fleet of Vespas in the PA. Jim
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Old 03-29-2014, 06:54 AM   #22
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Great posts. Fascinated to see where this goes!

Tom
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Old 03-29-2014, 07:20 AM   #23
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I love cruising around on the 300 wearing a Harley t-shirt, passing cars on the highway, people pointing and laughing-
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Old 03-29-2014, 10:01 AM   #24
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I got my wife a Vespa 250 LXV in late 2008. She rode it in the sub-division once (she did get a motorcycle endorsement a few years earlier). She says it is too heavy for here.

We took it to Santa Fe on a trailer and I have put most of the nearly 500 (yes 500) miles on it there.

Our subdivision in Phoenix dumps one immediately onto a dual lane highway where the posted speed limit recently was dropped to 55. Before that change, most flew past with one wing low. Not exactly scooter friendly territory.

Maybe a front carrying hitch might work, but then it would be all "bugged" up going down the road. I did put a front hitch on the truck and it is rated 500 pounds....
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Old 03-29-2014, 10:41 AM   #25
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Sorry about hijacking the thread, but I bet you could carry a whole fleet of Vespas in the PA. Jim
Jim,

Just for the record and as far as I'm concerned, you couldn't hijack this thread if you wanted to. It is for entertainment purposes only and it just goes where ever it goes. Vespas are definitely cool. My niece wanted a scooter so I bought her one as a Christmas gift. I encourage people to migrate towards two wheels. As much joy as I have gotten out of them over the past 40+ years, it would be selfish not to.



She is very fashion conscience so now she is sporting a Davida helmet, knuckle-less driving gloves, Halcyon goggles and Italian boots. She's had it two years now and I joke with her about me being a "Rocker" and her being a "Mod". Two wheelers are much more than transportation.

So what ever path this thread wonders down is fine by me. Enjoy life isn't just a catchy phrase.


Z
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Old 03-29-2014, 11:07 AM   #26
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Hey Zack - nice to meet you here too - did not know you own an airstream !
Tom (ST1100 in motocampers)
Hey, Tom,

I was drawing a blank there temporarily as I didn't expect to find you here. It is actually a small world after all. I have followed the progress of your project with enthusiasm. I like what you have done...I like the fact that you have stuck to your plan and I like the fact that you are nuts enough to take on a project like that. It takes a certain kind of fellow to start a project like that and yet, another type of fellow to see it through to the end. Any project like that requires 25x more effort than meets the eye. It takes initiative, motivation and most of all dedication to see it through. Good on you.

I know you are busy trying to get it wrapped up but I would be proud to see you post a couple of pics of you trailer here on this thread. It's out of the box, a compliment to AS and we are just shooting the breeze here anyway.

It's raining here today and I'm having trouble coming up with an excuse not to get out and do some cleaning in my shop.

Z
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Old 03-29-2014, 12:13 PM   #27
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Well, as long as we're showing off our bike pix:

1956 Matchless Café


For riding in the canyons, a Steve McQueen Triumph Bonneville custom


The long distance rig, an FJR 1300


A Husky TE310 for playing in the woods


For cruising the flats of Bonneville, a TTR50 pit bike



Bonnie also does well on the flats



Waiting for a KTM 1190R to arrive shortly, to fill in the gaps between the bikes.

Methinks all of us AS/MC types should plan a rally and bring the bikes.
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Old 03-29-2014, 02:44 PM   #28
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hi from AZ. . .it's clear to me Zacky that you are gonna win that ' He who dies with the most toys wins ' thing !! ( course LaraMe may be not far behind). . .love the old bike pics on this thread, keep them coming, regards, Craig
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Old 03-30-2014, 08:16 AM   #29
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Well, as long as we're showing off our bike pix:

1956 Matchless Café

Methinks all of us AS/MC types should plan a rally and bring the bikes.
LM,

I like all your bikes but the Matchless takes the cake for me. You seem to be able to relate to the fact that an artist needs more than one paint brush in his quiver. It isn't a sickness, its just filling in the gaps between brushes....yea, that's the ticket. Airstreams represent a certain kind of nomadic freedom and so do motorcycles, mix them together and I don't see it getting much better.

Agreed on the get together, Ouray, CO might be a good place for the first annual gathering.

Thanks for posting the pics and don't be a stranger.

Z
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Old 03-30-2014, 09:52 AM   #30
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As an Airstream nut and former owner of four classic Triumph's, I gotta say I love this thread!
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Old 03-30-2014, 09:56 AM   #31
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hi from AZ. . .it's clear to me Zacky that you are gonna win that ' He who dies with the most toys wins ' thing !! ( course LaraMe may be not far behind). . .love the old bike pics on this thread, keep them coming, regards, Craig
Craig,

My philosophy on motorcycles has never changed since grade school...just my budget improved over time. The winner isn't who has the most toys but who has come the closest to completely wearing out and using up those toys before he or she dies. I have gotten pretty good at putting motorcycles to good use and now, really need to focus on putting the Airstreams through hard labor.

I've had a steady diet of Airstreams since the early 80's but will be the first to admit that I haven't been able to push their boundaries due to work and pesky schedules. The earlier Airstreams, aside from infrequent family camping, I was eventually able to use them through work (and charge +/-$3K a month for them) which made work seem a little less like work getting to play in my trailers in the off hours. I was essentially "full timing" for about 8 years though I would travel home on some weekends. Over the years, I became quite comfortable in my "silver cocoons" and it beat staying in hotels by a country mile.

And like motorcycles, I get quite a bit of enjoyment tinkering on them, rigging them out, strategizing on what I need or don't need for them, etc. Every place I've lived since owning ASs, I've always had the ability to have the trailer at my home and always had full hook-ups. I may be preaching to the choir here, but I enjoy my trailers almost as much even when they are parked at home. They serve as spare bedrooms for friends & family, they served as my bedroom when the in-laws come to visit, they serve as a personal viewing room if there is a TV show or football game I want to watch undisturbed, serves as an on-site personal retreat, they are exceptionally handy during power outages, you get the picture. I get a little aggravated with the newer trailers and quality issues but it's usually something that is not insurmountable. Airstreams have never been cheap but the quality and lack of weight was a plus on the earlier trailers. I don't really care what others (non-AS people) think about them because there is a certain kind of coolness, to me, about them that I have trouble explaining...to others or to myself. At some point, I will have a single axle AS, too.


I really haven't given all that much consideration to it but yesterday, I was doing some spring cleaning and rolled most of my bikes outside (except for a couple that are in ICU or in the OR) and I'm simply amazed that I'm able to cram that much stuff into my shop...and now that I've got them back in and compressed, I think I could shoe-horn a couple more in there. My son pointed out yesterday that if I added a second mezzanine, I'd have plenty of room for more. He's got sixteen guitars...either he understands or it's genetic.

If you haven't guessed already, I'm in to what makes me happy or is fun...and I don't care if it hair-lips the Pope. I've done my time. I don't neglect anyone, anything or incur any debt to have my toys or to act irresponsible so I'm not dealing with a guilty conscience, creditors or touching my nest-egg. If I wait until I'm dead, I've waited too long. Although I don't believe in hand-outs, all my kids have been provided with the education (both formal and informal) and the tools (a thriving, growing, lucrative business) for them and their kids to live a comfortable life. I left home when I was 17 years old with a 1/2 duffel bag of clothes, a rough '71 Monte Carlo and a 13" black & white TV. It's been solid labor ever since...and during that time, not once did I lose my sense of humor or my desire to live life. Pretty heavy stuff, huh?

So, today, it's Phase II of the shop cleaning process...I b:tch about cleaning the shop, but deep down, I enjoy that too....as its all related to some of the things I enjoy about life. Now that the rain has passed, this afternoon, I will start the arduous job of breaking in that damn Indian.

Just when you thought it couldn't get any worse.

Z
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Old 03-30-2014, 11:57 AM   #32
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What an awesome thread, please keep us updated on your Pan America adventures!
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Old 03-30-2014, 12:31 PM   #33
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http://youtu.be/j0kJdrfzjAg


Said James, "in my opinion there's nothin' in this world like a '52 Vincent and a red-headed girl."


All the bikes here look fantastic - no offense meant by the song; more an ode to one that could easily have been written about any brand...and c'mon - Richard Thompson!! :-)

By the way - I LOVE your Pan America and the deal you got on it. Good on you!!
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Old 03-31-2014, 12:45 AM   #34
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Craig,

My philosophy on motorcycles has never changed since grade school
Z, my philosophy on bikes is the same as my philosophy on tools: only buy, rarely sell.

SteveSueMac, right there with you on the Vincent. While at Bonneville, we ran into this guy, attempting a record on a ultra rare Vincent Black Lightning, a methanol powered bike which is one of 16, and the same model as used by Rollie Free in that iconic photo.

You haven't lived until you've watched a Vincent attempt its record on the flats, and heard the crackle of that engine as it carefully winds up.

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Old 04-09-2014, 04:40 PM   #35
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And so it goes....

Been out of pocket for a few days so I got in some meditation on the Pan America project. I'm pleased to report that I got seven Sendel wheels (T03 with black inlay) with steel valve stems and SS centers, seven Michelins and a set and a half of Centramatics on order today. The PA tires had a "born on" date of early 2008 (original tires I suspect) which appear flawless but they are GYM's which I consider to be damn GYM's even when new and a malfunction just waiting to happen at their age. I've seen what a POS tire can do to an Airstream and don't want to experience it first hand. This upgrade ran roughly $2.8K but if I were sitting on the shoulder of the road with a smoking tire carcass and my pretty aluminum beat to hell and back, that would seem cheap...not to mention, the peace of mind in the mean time. I'm very familiar with after-market TPMS (on bikes) but am still doing research on a 6-wheel application...I'll start that research on this forum and go from there when I get some surfing/reading time. On the Sendels, I'm going to engrave numbers on the back of them to be able to keep track of the wheel history over time.

I chose to run a Sendel as a spare...if I have a tire problem, I don't want to add to the problem by putting a questionable spare on the ground. If I have to use the spare, then I don't have to worry about swapping a steel wheel back into the spare tire rack, etc. I'll just leave the spare in the wheel rotation as usually age, not mileage, is what gets mine gone first. The only regrets I've had with money and tires is when I didn't spend the money on them. I don't know about you but fresh rubber makes me feel young, care-free and border-line vibrant.

The Centramatics balancers have saved me a boat-load in motorcycle tires (5 Goldwings) over the years and therefore, were a no-brainer for me. I have Centramatics on speed dial from all my motorcycling project that required them. I always balance my wheels as a good starting point and let the Centramatics do their thing over the life of the tire. On motorcycles, the equated into a 50% increase in tire life while providing a smoother ride as an added bonus. Their sales literature and demo video sold me on the first set....their performance sold me on all subsequent sets. Good people, good product.

The brakes were "checked" and the bearings were "packed" just before I received the trailer but until I've seen it with my own eyes....a good side project after I've mounted the tires on the wheels and start the swap.

While I was out of pocket, I received some plastic strips (glides) from McMaster Carr to go under the rear of the PA where the loading ramp will actually glide in and out. I plan to start on this (hopefully quick) project this evening and will have some before and after pics just for the helluvit. Also received two front wheel motorcycle chocks for the garage area but I have to do some experimenting with various size bikes before I can make a commitment on how to position them in the garage. While at it, I'm replacing the TowRax tie down system which includes adding a third rail up the center. The TowRax stuff I pull out will get mounted on my open, flat-bed M/C trailer.

I'm looking forward to getting this basic stuff out of the way so I can justify starting on some "specialty" projects in the PA....you know....the fun stuff.

Onward and upward....or at the very least, onward.


Z
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Old 04-09-2014, 04:54 PM   #36
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After years owning various Harley's to include one softtail Fatboy, two CVO Street Glides and my last two Hog's being CVO Ultra Classics, I find for me the best bike I have ever owned and one that is a long term keeper is my new Ducati Multistrada GT...


The difference between the Hog's and the Ducati are "night & day" and for me, the Ducati is the best bike in the world to match my riding!!!


Oops - am I off topic?
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Old 04-09-2014, 05:26 PM   #37
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The only regrets I've had with money and tires is when I didn't spend the money on them.
No truer words have been spoken, er, typed!

Tom
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Old 04-10-2014, 08:29 AM   #38
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.....I find for me the best bike I have ever owned and one that is a long term keeper is my new Ducati Multistrada GT...

The difference between the Hog's and the Ducati are "night & day" and for me, the Ducati is the best bike in the world to match my riding!!!

Oops - am I off topic?

John...there is no off topic here. To me, the Ducs with desmodromic valve train are an engineering marvel. Probably not a lot of fun to work on, but remarkable as far as valves go. No valve bounce, no valve float, no spring force to buck. I don't care who you are....that's cool man stuff right there.


Where is the back-drop for your photos? Gettysburg?


Z
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Old 04-10-2014, 08:50 AM   #39
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No truer words have been spoken, er, typed!

Tom

You can relate on the tires, huh, Tom? I don't cut corners on tires. I've seen people destroy a $20K motorcycle because they were trying to milk too much out of an $180 tire. The juice just isn't worth the squeeze. If I do wind up on the shoulder of the road, I want it to be because of something unavoidable.

My quick ramp glide fix was a bust last evening. Should have known better than to even mention it would be a quick project. The glide material I ordered was perfect but, as it turns out, that isn't all I was dealing with.

On the "box" under the rear of the trailer that houses the ramp when rolling, there are some 3/16" x 1" angle-iron cross members that stiffen the sides of the box. On one end, a weld appeared cracked so I yanked on it to determine if it was sound...it was not. Where I have the trailer positioned, I couldn't get my MIG welder close enough to re-weld. Dark was closing in on me so I'm going to get that done today, with any luck.

When I ordered the glide material, I also ordered some SS latches for the underbelly storage boxes...they appear to be the same configuration as the galvanized/rusting ones on the trailer so I'm happy about that. You would think that Airstream would spring for the extra $0.40 per latch and provide them with SS to start with on such an expensive trailer. There I go preaching to the choir again.

Thanks for dropping by.

Z
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Old 04-11-2014, 06:45 AM   #40
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You can relate on the tires, huh, Tom? I don't cut corners on tires. I've seen people destroy a $20K motorcycle because they were trying to milk too much out of an $180 tire.
Yep. I'm a car guy (have my motorcycle license but never quite felt comfortable with it - a Miata is more my thing). Spent lots of time telling people why winter tires are a good thing -- yes, even better than all-seasons.

Even the trailer has $$$ Nokian European commercial van tires on each corner, even the spare (like yours, on a matching alloy.)

So many people buy tires by price, or just fixate on tread life. That misses the joy, and the safety, that a good tire can provide.

Enjoying this thread immensely!

Tom
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