IT'S BEEN ALMOST 20 YEARS SINCE someone made The Great Decision. That someone was definitely a Japanese. assuredly a high-roller in the Honda organization, maybe even Mr. Honda his own self. And all he did was launch the development of something the rest of the motorcycling world had deemed either impractical or impossible: a four-cylinder motorcycle for the masses.
Regarding Matt Handi's letter in your September. 1985 issue, his statement that the Cagiva 650 has "pushrods as long as pogo sticks" proves that he didn't read the test, and that he knows nothing about motorcycles. The Ducati has had desmodromic valve gear for over 20 years.
German-made Weigl bars are available for all sportbikes. Finished in gold, black or chrome, these bars can be rotated, raised or lowered. Additionally, each bar end is fitted with a weight to dampen vibration. Available in black or chrome for $69.95 and in gold or black chrome for $77.50. For more information, contact The Weigl Company Inc., 1461 Arundell Ave., Ventura, CA 93003; (805) 658-8010.
Weigl Company Inc.
Lok-Lift dirt-bike stand
Tired of hefting that dirt bike onto a box? The Lok-Lift stand extends from 12 inches in height to 17 inches with a step on the pedal. After the platform is extended, it locks in place automatically, and is lowered with another step on the pedal. Finished in white powder-paint, the unit sells for $79.95 direct from Viper Products, 25327 West Avenue Stanford. Valencia, CA 91355; (805) 257-0181.
Weigl Company Inc.
Mustang engraved Magna collection
Customizing that Magna is made easier with the Mustang Magna Collection. Parts are hand-engraved, chrome-plated and gold-inlaid. The kit costs $119.95 or individual pieces can be ordered. The complete kit includes a handlebar clamp ($29.95). air cleaner cover set ($64.95), master cylinder lids ($15.95 ea.) and is available at local motorcycle dealers. Contact Al Simons Co., Town Hill Rd., Terryville. CT 06786-0283: (203) 582-9633.
Weigl Company Inc.
Performance Machine disc brakes
This cast-iron disc with aluminum carrier is available in either 12or 13-inch diameter. A computer-machined, billet-aluminum, four-piston, dual-action caliper is also available to complete the custom look. Many combinations and applications are available. A catalog with prices and applications is available from Performance Machine Inc., 15520 Illinois Ave., P.O. Box 927, Paramount, CA 90723; (213) 634-6532.
Honda for 1986: Works-class street-racers, more-custom customs, and simpler XRs,
CAMRON E. BUSSARD
IF YOU HAVE A HANKERING FOR A brand-new motorcycle but just can't quite scrape together the funds for one, don't throw in the towel quite yet. Because the chances are that your local dealers have some of the most fabulous buys in years sitting in their showrooms these days, brand-new bikes that are selling for such absurdly low prices that they might enable your new-bike dreams to become reality.
In the past several years, many Japanese riders have begun to look for a way to express their individual styles and tastes of motorcycling with their riding apparel. Their tastes are turning out to be complicated and segmented, for they are searching for accessories that appear to be custom-ordered.
New motorcycle chassis designs are increasingly in the news in Europe of late. More and more alternatives to the traditional means of tying two wheels, an engine and a rider to gether have reached the experimental stage. The o1d~'st of these "new wave" chassis concepts is the ELF2 roadracer, a 500cc GP bike powered by a factory Honda three-cylinder NS500 engine.
THE BIKE FROM BRAZIL: A TOURING MACHINE FOR THOSE WHO DARE TO BE DIFFERENT
WHAT IT IS.IS DIFFERENT. Very different. There simply is no other word for the Amazonas, a titanic, made-in-Brazil touring bike draped loosely around a 1600cc Volkswagen Beetle engine. In fact, the Amazonas is so differ ent that Cycle World gave it a perma nent place in infamy when we in cluded the bike in last April's "The Ten Worst Motorcycles," a parody of our annual Ten Best awards.
ENOUGH WAS ENOUGH: SOMEthing had to be done. The poorAmazonas had suffered too long. The jokes about the bike's size were bad enough. But then, the Amazonas is a hit on the portly side. And the abusive comments about the bike's styling did have some basis in fact, although it should be pointed out that, with time, the Amazonas tends to become rather appealingcute, almost.
The world was a different place 25 years ago, but touring was no less fun
"TO HELL WITH THIS." MY friend Duncan Spencer announced one rainy night as we labored over his defunct motorcycle. "Why don't we fly to Germany and buy two new BMWs and see what it's like to go somewhere without breaking down?" With that simple roadside plea, Duncan planted the seed for a summerlong ride in Europe, a heady continental rush that even today, 25 years later, still evokes smiles and fond memories.
ANYONE SHOPPING FOR A SU per-serious, lightweight, four-stroke off-road Single soon learns there are just four: ATK's exotic, extremely limited-production racer, and three versions of Husqvarna's 510-the 510 enduro, the 510 motocross, and the bike you see here, the 510 Cross Country.
Husqvarna's state-of-theart fourstrokes have roots that go back to 1903.
FOR CONTEMPORARY AMERICAN motorcyclists, it's easy to as sume that four-stroke engines are something Husqvarna knows nothing about. After all, ever since the first Huskys came to our shores in the middle Sixties, we've seen nothing but two-strokes from the Swedish firm-right up until the introduction of the new four-stroke Single in 1983.
CHANGE IS IN THE air. It's only a faint scent now, only a first hint. But that odor of revolution is here, presaging things to come. For 30 years now, there has been one standard for motorcycle front suspensions: the telescopic fork. Perhaps there have been slight differences, as some manufacturers located springs inside the fork tubes while others placed them on the outside, or as some companies used air as a springing medium while others disdained it.
From the shores of Lago di Como, a lesson in Style
STEVEN L. THOMPSON
NOBODY CAN DEFINE FLASH, but everybody knows what it is. Cruiser riders know, for sure, and so do café berserkos. Likewise for Gold Wingers and other full-dress touring types. And most certainly, riders of bikes like Moto Guzzi's Le Mans 1000 know precisely what Flash is all about.
WHEN I PICKED UP THE Le Mans from Moto Guzzi's Baltimore, Maryland, headquarters, my plan was to put it through the wringer of a road test, with the emphasis on the kind of sport riding at which the Le Mans series historically excelled.
Seas of people cover the bleachers and grounds of Suzuka Circuit like an explosion of brightly colored confetti. There are more than a quarter-million of them altogether, more than you'd find at any American football or baseball game.
SO YOU THINK THE NEW YEAR STARTS in January, do you? Well, for most people it does. But for motocrossers, 1986 started early in August, in the unlikely location of Ponca City. Oklahoma. That's where the National Motosport Association holds its grand national championship every year.
I have a 1981 Yamaha XT250 that I ride in the winter. But when I start it when the outside temperature is around 10-15 degrees F., it doesn't idle very smoothly for the first 10 minute of riding, especially at altitudes over 8000 feet. A friend suspects the cold temperature of the intake manifold won't allow proper gasoline-droplet atomization.
We need your photos for Slipstream. We're looking for photos that make us smile because they say something about motorcycling. Submissions should be made to Slipstream, Cycle World, 1499 Monrovia, Newport Beach, Calif. 92663. Only black and white prints, 8 by 10 in., should be sent.