Monday, July 2, 2012

June 30th was the Doug and Amy Roper 4th annual Tiddler Tour.  First arrival and winner of the Long Distance award was Mike Gontesky, from Hampton, Va., via Binghamton, N.Y., where he was visiting relatives.  Mike brought an early '60 Lambretta 150 which he had recently been given and had just rebuilt and was using the TT as a shakedown for the fall Giro.  A fender mount on Mike's trailer had broken, so we dragged out the MIG welder and Douglas welded it back on.

Because of the small wheels on the scooter, it's forks were fouling the chock so, while we had the welder out, we widened the chock to clear the forks.
Later Fri., Leif Gustavson arrived with his comical TW200 Yamaha.
Sat. Tiddlers showed up from as far away as N.H., Dorchester, Ma., and Sparta, N.J.  The oldest bike was probably Bill Burke's '55 NSU Max Special and smallest bike was a '81 AR 80 Kawasaki.  A total of 19 bikes took to the Sat. am  loop: ten Japanese, four German, two Italian, two Spanish and one Czech.

Bill Burke in front of the 175 CZ talks to Mike Gontesky behind his 150 Lambretta.

Rich Hosley stands near his Ossa Wildfire with Henry Sypher's 175 Bridgestone in the foreground
As my Moto Guzzi Airone is still apart with crankshaft woes. I rode Doug's 65 CZ 175 again.  The CZ is a great little bike; very comfortable, handles well and good brakes.  But, it's no fireball, as the AR80 could out drag me on the CZ.  Once again, my brother had chosen great roads, heading south and west in the morning down to the shore in Guilford then back up through Durham.  There was a bit more traffic than we usually see in that area, but we still got plenty of empty roads.  Near the end of the morning loop there was a long uphill slog followed by a fast downhill section that I though would finally allow me to break 60 mph.  But, when I rolled off slightlly for a bend, the motor started to tighten and I clutched it and coasted to the bottom.  I let out the clutch just before I stopped and the motor started up and seemed none the worse for it.  We carried on and got some lunch at Higgies in Higganum and brought it back to Doug and Amy's house, a total of 85 miles.  After lunch, Douglas decided he was going to ride his 200 Bridgestone and offered me his 260 Benelli that he had ridden in the morning.  I didn't find it as pleasant as the CZ.  While the engine is much more powerful, the shift was bad, esp. on the downshift.  This combined with a very grabby front brake made corner entry awkward.  The seat was hard and rear shocks oversprung for me.  I didn't like the handling as well, it feeling top heavy.  Which isn't to say I couldn't have fun on it.  We rode on the east side of the Ct. River in the afternoon and Douglas made a loop that incorporated three legendary roads in both directions in Lyme and East Haddam.  I rode with Rich Hosley on his Ossa Wildfire, Leif on his TW, Henry Syphers on his 175 Bridgestone and Rich Midgley on his CB175 Honda, and we had a great 65 mile scratch.
After we got back, I was admiring Dale Hoyt's '63? Bultaco Mecurio 175 and he suggested I take it for a ride.  I did and it's a sweetheart.  It has a very willing motor with a surprisingly wide powerband,  is extremely agile, and has a very comfortable seat.  The brakes, as Dale warned me, were marginal at best.

The food and drink ensued with many non tiddlers showing up, some in some interesting cages.

Beth Braun admires a '60 Triumph TR3 and '56 Buick Skylark and a '38? Chevy.
We capped off the evening with fireworks that were good enough to bring two cop cars.  No one went to jail and, in fact, the cops let us do the final shoot.

1 comment:

  1. Great writeup Dave! My little group didn't want to ride the PM loop so we just relaxed then switched to "evening attire" and the '76 Suburban cage"