mandag 31. desember 2012

Pics from Yesterdaze

The first day of a new year.

A new year in which each day that lies ahead of us is as clean paper sheets. Sheets we need fill with what we like and what make us happy, do I need to suggest motorcycles, riding and more related activities.

Nope I guess not.

Enclosed picture show young and proud members of the NMK`s Drammen department. One of the first branches of the Norwegian Motorcycle club.

From left to right; Thomas Bråthen born in 1893, Knut Espedal born in1898, Narve Wiker born in 1890, Peder Espedal born in 1895 and finally Alf Justad born in 1893.
Bikes in the same order; Harley, Henderson two Harleys and another Henderson.
Knut Espedal we know from a previous post covering his spectacular crash in the 1923 ISDT in Sweden.

I have dug quite a bit in the Espedal brothers history and albums, keep an eye up for more stories on them.

Happy New Years eve!

To all our friends, blog followers and whoever else pass by this little single star on the big big Milky Way generally called the WWW;
We wish you all the best for the year to come, take care of your loved ones and do not take life to seriously at all times, allow time for riding your cicle and have fun with your friends.

Sverre & Øyunn

søndag 30. desember 2012

Dreaming of summer

It's stormy outside and it's hail in the air.

I am dreaming of summer ahead of me.
What is better than getting the camping gear packed on your bike, convince your love to come along in the sidecar and go camping. To ride the country roads looking for the right spot to raise the tent, a location next to a lake or a stream, ideal for a camp fire.

Arghhh! still 3 months till spring is here.

onsdag 26. desember 2012

Mechanical workshop

Another picture swiped in a historical archive, employees at Ørebro mechanical workshop lined up to all be part of the photo.
Quite an impressive horn on the 1917 Harley with sidecar, at right in the picture.

The Harley to the left side is obviously having some issues, lets hope the steering head bearing is not taken apart outside. The bearing is easily misplaced if lost in gravel, I know from experience!

mandag 24. desember 2012

Flying Merkel and a wicked sidecar

Damned, its not always that easy to keep up with a foreign language.

Wicker sidecars, their apperance look so fragile to me. This particular sidecar is attached to a dream of a motorcycle, a deep orange Flying Merkel, aint that nice?
Do me a favour, click the link, enjoy the pictures and learn more on this great machine, once an important player in the American motorcycle scene.

This pic. is gently stolen from a website dedicated to local history.

onsdag 19. desember 2012

Zen and the art of motorcycle maintanance.

Imagine yourself finding an old motorcycle that have been maintained in accordance to the manufactur spesifications.
Theoretically it should be as new, theoretically that is.

When buying a new Harley in Norway back in 1920, it was followed by a 84 pages thick book in how to maintain your new investment.
If just those yesterdaze motorcycle riders had bothered to read this great booklet. We as the restorers of old bikes know many didnt.

Take a look at the pages in this booklet describing where and how often to grease and replace oils, impressive 42 items in need of care, 42!!!

Wonder if modern riders would have been capable of motorcycle maintanance according to Harley Davidson 1920`s spesifications?

Chart for lubrication right side.

A few key words; Lubricate your inlet rocker arms every 70km`s, remove grips and refill with grease avery 11000 km`s, add grease to your saddle post and spring every 700 km`s, ......... 
Chart for lubrication left side.

A selection of care point on the lft side; lubricate horn bearings every 1400 km`s (you better do, if not it wont Oogahh when you need it), the gear change pivot bolt need some grease every 700 km`s, ........

Did Sørensen & Balchen sell many Harleys in Norway in those early years of Norwegian motorcycle culture? YES they did, just check the sales figures as per April 1920; 1336 motorbikes, whow!
In 1917 & 1918 they could not get enough bikes from the factory to meet the demand, this because WWI opted the Milwaukee factory to sell more bikes to the army.

mandag 17. desember 2012

Great times since long forgotten

I just love advertising from the early days of motorcycling. Who would not like to own a Harley Davidson after having seen this double paged add from 1914.

More winter pics from Norway

Today most motorbikes are used as pleasure toys, we ride them on a sunny day and park whenever the weather is wet or cold (at least most do).

Not was the scene like this back in the time of yesterdaze motorcycling.

Motorcycles had to work as commercial vehicles, summer and winter. During winter, skis where added either to the side of the bike or the front whell was replaced by one. The variation of ski setup`s for bikes where as many as the number of inventors.

I have since long planned on making an article digging deeper into motorcycle ski setups and those who made them, hmm I need to get some work done on this eventually.
Below are three different photos showing commercial bikes used in the harsh enviroment of the Norwegian winter.   Look at the clothes these guys carry, fur beeing a keyword, and I am quite sure there is Wolf fur used on the gowns worn by the two passengers in the top picture. They are both sales re-presentatives hence they have their own driver. Both the second and the third picture show postal carriages. One is underway to deliver and the other is ready to take of.
No wonder some used the word "workhorses" when talking on their commercially used motorcycle.    

A mudflap could lead to a pair of beautiful Panheads

I met Tim trough e-bay.
Actually I have learned to know a lot of great people trough e-bay, having spent quite a few hours there looking for just the right part, this is an extra outcome of the effort.

Tim makes some great leather mudflaps with lots of spots and jewels. A mudflap like this will add to the apperance of your old scooter that is for sure, and not to forget it keeps the water from hitting your legs and more.

A joining of practical and estetic joy, that is!

Tim sent me a couple of pics showing his beautiful Panheads, a solo 1950 and a 1958 sidecar rig. Both of them impressive machines, and good to know they get ridden.

If your in a mudflap mood, look out for Tims great looking ones on e-bay.  

torsdag 13. desember 2012

It is winter, that is for sure

Damned, it is depressing when your outside thermometer read below  - 22 degree Celcius, add this with the fact that the inside one, mounted on your workshop wall read zero degrees, and I am quite sure the outcome of this gives less than none inspiration for motorcycle maintanance.

It is almost as it is good to be back on work now, then I dont have to see all this snow coming down, neither do I have to spill my strength in shoveling.

It would be more fun if one could use even winter days for riding like the chaps in the photo below, maybe it is time to convert one of the old hogs to a snowmobile?    

Guys where tougher in the old days, like 85 years old Bernhard pictured a cold winter day in 1965 on his Indian Power Plus. Bernhard was then regularly riding his old Indian that he had owned for years. Wonder where this bike went when bernhard didnt ride it any longer?? Late sixties, well I assume they where still taking bikes like this to the local scrapyard.  

søndag 18. november 2012

Scandinavian Harley racers

Posted this picture on AMCA`s facebook page the other evening, better leave it here as well in case your not by the AMCA site.
What a great photo this is, second from right is "Master" Erik Westerberg, the three others are Danes. Location is Fanø beach, for several years the location for high speed racing with both cars and motor cycles.

The event was hit by a deadly accident in 1923 when Malcolm Campbell lost a front wheel on his 350Hp Sunbeam named Blue bird, this killed a young Danish boy amongst the spectators. This accident made local authorities to forbid the event, hence there where no more speed racing at the Fanø beach.

lørdag 17. november 2012

Harley Nilsen II

I had a previous post on "Harley Nilsen", this mechanical genius , Harley lover, Harley racer and working class hero, hence riding & racing under the AMK (workers union motor club) flag and have tried to get hold of more photos coveringhis career, no success until recently.

This would soon change when discussing historical motorcycle photos with Ole Birger Gjevre, a senior NVMC member who is the only one as far as I know having received King's Medal of Merit for his efforts to preserve the history of vehicles.   As a curiosity I need to tell I first met Ole Birger when I was a very young, though a motorcycle dedicated man. This happened when I joined my first motorcycle rally ever, Trollrally at Kvanhøgd back in -82 (damned, time goes fast). I had ridden my 1939 DKW NZ 350 cc for more than 250 kms away from my parents home, no driving lisence, this was still two years ahead of me.
Ole Birger stayed in the tent next to me, riding a Nimbus 750 inline four. On my other side the guy rode a 1927 Harley, never had I been anywhere in such a crowd of old motorcycles and riders.

OK, enough digressions.
No that aint true, I need to tell Ole Birger collects Norwegian made pedal cars, his collection count more than 50 different cars.

OK, story continues as follows, Ole Birger told me he had got a photo showing an unknown pedal car as well as a old Harley Davidson motorcycle. When receiving the photo I knew I had seen this rather customised Harley IOE before, it once belonged to Harley Nilsen, his daughter still keeping a model of the bike in her living room.   As I knew what capabilities Nilsen had as a craftsman with metals, I had no doubt the unknown pedal car was a Nilsen product, which a phone call to his daughter could confirm. Needless to say Ole Birger was more than pleased when this piece fell into place in his puzzle. Had the pedal car survived? We still dont know, I guess it is like with old motorbikes, the hunt will continue.

I am so excited by old pictures telling so many stories by their details;
The pedal car is actually parked on top of the sidecar roof as the sidecar made by Nilsen had a hard top, no canvass.
The scene is from May 17-1946 when celebrating Norway's National Day. Keep in mind the WWII ended in -45, there was a lot of reasons for celebrating.

Picture source; Frode Andreassen/ the collection off Ole Birger Gjevre

fredag 16. november 2012

I want one of these

Help, I really would like to own one of these oilfilter cooling fin housings, once sold by V-Twin, now unfortunately obsolete.
If anyone have one to many let me have a note on my e-mail and I will try to see if I can afford it!

Ok its a crappy picture but those who know would know!

The V-twin parts number in the catalogue VT No: 40-0201

søndag 11. november 2012

"Oh Damned it Dagny" the story

Those whom have stayed tuned to this blog is familiar with several names once a part of the Norwegian motorcycle racing scene during the late teens and twenties. Names such as Jac. Hansen, Bjarne Wist, Nic. Lunde Sr, Macke Nicolaysen, Herman Oppen, Alf Granheim, Ernst Vaumund and several others.

Were there any women in this male dominated enviroment? Did women drive motorbikes at all in this early days of motorcycling?

Yes there where a few of them.

You might remember I had a previous post on "Oh damned it Dagny".

Since then I did some more research on Dagny with great help of one senior vintage motorcycle owner living in the neighbourhoods of a close relative from since long passed Dagny.

Per Erik living at Kongsvinger was actually one of the founders of the NVMC back in 1974, he have a bunch of nice motorbikes such as Henderson and ACE. Thanks to the help of Per Erik I was able to make a story on Dagny for the NVMC club magazine "Sidevogna".

I will make a translation of this text as a follow up of my previous post and you will all learn the story of "Oh damned it Dagny" as I did.

Who was Dagny, this brave woman riding her Harley in a race as tough as the Korketrekkeren?

The story of Oh damned it Dagny!

Dagny was born on the first of July in 1907 and she grew up at the farm Graff in Hernes close to Elverum in the eastern parts of Norway, just above our biggest lake Mjøsa. Graff was a rich farm in constant development at the times when Dagny grew up.

At the farm a school in household for young woman had its premises, it had many teachers and pupils and was well known in its time.

Dagny soon developed to become a real tomboy, not affected by the nearby school for young women to become perfect wives. Off course a great deal of stubborness was required from young Dagny to live like this in the early 1900`s She became an eager hunter in nearby woods along with her brothers and father and her father got Dagny her first hunting rifle as soon as she became a teen.

Dagny, as she was a tomboy would soon adopt male habits, habits such as swearing. Hence her nick "Oh damned it Dagny", in Norwegian this read "Fy Faen Dagny".

If Dagny was influenced by her older relative Oluf Graf when she at age 18 took her driving licence and bought her first bike we dont know, still I would imagine as Oluf Graf grew up at the nearby farm Sande in Løten. Dagny and Oluf where relatives and their families spent time together.

Oluf, several years older than Dagny had been on twoo wheels since his 18 birthday too, hence I think its fair to believe he lit her interest in motor biking.

Dagny on her first Harley having just got her driving lisence. Check out the smile on her face, redy to hit the road. A girlfriend is on the pillion.

Not only did Dagny ride a motorcycle as was a male sport, as a young woman her father helped her in purchasing a log cabin that was taken apart and moved to the most remote spot in the easter mountains where a truck could go.

When loaded off the truck, the cabin was again erected and Dagny baptized her hiding place "Taboo" (taboo in the Norwegian language is tabu, the word bu is the same as cabin hence this name; Tabu).

Dagny spent a lot of time at Taboo and during the WWII she stayed there for 5 years. At this remote location there where no german soldiers. As she had kept her guns (which in itself was strictly illegal) she hunted and shared the trapping with farmers living close to the mountains in Rendalen. This was truly appreciated as there was a lack of food during those hard times. After the war had ended, Dagny and a guy named Bjøntegård was given the job to bring down the reindeer population in the eastern mountains as there during the war years had been no official hunting.

Dagny and Bjøntegård did in a short time bring down the reindeer population, Dagny herself did kill more than a 1000 deers with her Krag rifle and its said she could kill a deer, flay its skin and cut it apart in ten minutes.

Dagny as a payed rein deer hunter.

Not only did Dagny hunt for reindeers, she allso shot several wolves, foxes and wolverines, selling the skin for cash. In a newspaper article in Dagbladet in 1956 she was refeered to as a Norwegian Davy Crocket, others gave her a new nick, "Dagny the queen of wilderness".

As a fotnote, not only did Dagny kill her own food, she was well known for her quality moonshine, if there was ever a party she would be in charge of the booze.

When not staying at Taboo Dagny lived in Ophus at Storelvdal, this is a farmer comunity in the Rena region (east of the river). How many years her transportation was by means of Harley Davidsons I have not been able to find out, still I know her first Harley, a 1917ìsh magneto model was bought second handed. The second bike a 1926 modelFD 74" (1200cc), the FD another magneto model, this one fitted with acetylene lights. When participating in the Korketrekkeren she used the secon Harley, then with all excess gear such as lights removed.

There is no doubt Dagny had managed to become a NMK member as we can see in pictures from newspaper clips her bike have a small NMK enamel plaque on the handlebars as most NMK members had then.

Dagny and her 74» (1200cc) model FD.

Dagny ready to start in the 1927 Korketrekkern hillclimb.

According to a Aftenposten report on the 1927 Korktrekkeren:

Miss Møystad unfortunately faced technical problems in the end of the event. This was a great shame as she had a remarkably driving technique. Her starts and her gearing is close to perfect and her skills should be envied by many of her male competitors. The unfortunate engine problem made her miss becoming amongst the winners, which would have been well deserved.

Dagny got this plaque when participating in the 1927 Korketrekkeren, according to her relative it was mounted on her bike until sold many years later.

Dagny would stay with motorcycles as transport, even at her older years, though with less engine displacement than the big Harleys she rode as young. This fact would eventually become her faith. At age 71 her motorbike was a Zundapp 90cc, and one day when Dagny had been in a nearby village picking strawberries she on her way home (after dark) met a huge truck loaded with fish from western Norway heading for Oslo. The truck made such a turbulence that Dagny was thrown in the ditch along the road. Even if she wore a helmet hear head injuries was so severe she passed away silently at Elverum hospital in the late summer of 1978.

Even if Dagny passed away far to early, there is no doubt she lived her life as she wanted, motorcycling, fishing and hunting and she was for sure not bound by the norms average in surrounding society.

Trond Berger interviewed by Per Erik ØO. whom in addition to the interview scanned the relevant pictures from Dagnys albums, pictures from albums once owned by Oluf Graff, Dagnys niece Anne Marie at Kirkenær.

tirsdag 6. november 2012

Next generation biker

My grandson!

Soooo close!

Damned it will be a hard time to wait for next summer as the pan is now so close to be done. Got the electrics done, mudguards coated with tectyle inside a really heavy layer of this gory stuff that tectyle is.
Will not be any rust in these mudguards in my time, which is great to know.

Spun the front brake cable with Speedway cable wrap, looks like a bee now.

Now I need to pull myself together to get the gearbox completed!

søndag 28. oktober 2012

First snow, winter is here

Desember is supposedly the first month of winter, still today we faced the first snowfall.
When I know they will now start polluting public roads with salt, I realise the 2012 motorcycle season have come to an end.

Still I feel like I have managed to stretch this season well.

Had one great ride Wednesday when Henning asked me to join on a ride into the countryside. Sun, but still cold as temperatures have been below the freezing point at night for quite a while. Henning rode his most moderrn bike, a customized Suzuki offroad, well it might be more correct to explain the bike as minimized, rather than customised?
Anyway, my pick was easy, the "not so dirty nine" W as this have a sheep fur cover on the seat, its just great when the temperature fall towards freezing.

Reached home just before darkness, a great ride.

Yeasterday night we had 8 degree celcius below, still Friday showed up with blue skies, and a phone call from Villy. He wanted to have a last trip on his Chief before it would be left to hibernation.
OK, both me and my W where ready for another day on the road, after all there was only a couple of degrees below in the shade.

Upon Villys arrival it appeared he had been joined by an odd team of riders, all keen on stretching the season to the limit.
On Russian K750 sidehack, a Chinese ChangJiang bobber, oh yes baby, nothing less than a Chinese bob-job and finally a Jap bike off less interest.

What a strange company touring local country roads that day, two old US made V twins, a Russian sidehack, a Chinese bobber and finally a Japanese racing bike.

This time we did find ice on the roads, had to be pretty carefull when riding in the shadow, still a fantastic day.

And now snow, god grief i already miss summer!

lørdag 27. oktober 2012

"Faster than light", entering the jet age

As Flash Gordon on his way to the planet Mongo I will ride black Bessie streamlining the accompanying fighter jet.

søndag 21. oktober 2012

Chemistry is a messy business

I am slow, a slacker, sometimes.
My friend Geir is restoring a just beautiful FN OHV from the late twenties (Its actually my fault as I pushed him onto the project).
A loooong time ago he asked if I could nickel plate some smaller partts for his engine, yeah sure, no problem.
And then time is going, and there is always something else to do and poor Geir is one of those that neither begs nor yell out, just patiently wait.
Oh well, this weekend my conscience told me to get it going in the nickel plating department, this as well as the fact that none have so far been able to have a bath in my recently refurbished bathroom, this as some home made fittings where still missing(yes you read those words, home made fittings).

I bet there are more folks than me who know the feeling of satisfaction when something you have promised way to long is finally done?

Enclosing a pic of my partially home made bath tub faucet from the late teens and its home made stainless tig-welded post. This now makes it possible to relaxe in my 1912 Norwegian-made cast-iron bath tub.

Why make it simple?
Then we would all ride Japanese or a BMW R1200 GS!!!

Panhead 1948 progress

Engine is back in the bike, all bolts lubricated and tightened as well as secured with cotter pins.
What a tight fit from seat post to rear head, why didnt the inventors leave just a little bit more room?

My black Bessie girl, I dare to admit I`m looking forward to our relationship on the road, Yahoo (big grin).

Autumn ride

As usual October is wet, seriously wet. Its been pissin down for more than a week in what seems to be an endless flow of water from above.

When the sun finally showed up in a glimpse recently it was time to get the ol hog out for just another spin before winter arrives with snow, ice and salted roads.

Colors of the leaves before falling to the earth as well as those already fallen are what I find most fascinating when riding these days, lets hope there is more chances to enjoy October from the saddle.

Ronny`s place

My Swedish e-mail friend Uffe is a constant source for interesting pics. He and his mates have a bunch of early Harleys, Flatheads as well as the earlier IOE`s, and as I have stated in previous posts, they use and abuse them as they where intended to when leaving the brick building in Milwaukee.

Enjoy with me this latest pic from Uffe, its his mate Ronny`s cave, an early Harley heaven!!