no politics...just ridin'

Pink Ribbon Ride 2007

The annual Pink Ribbon Ride organised by WIMA was held on Sunday and a few of us took part. More than 1000 bikes assembled in the Griffith Uni car park for the short 50km ride down to the Bearded Dragon Hotel at Tamborine Village. Lots of pinked-up bikes and riders getting together to raise funds for a great cause, however, I will not be participating in it again unless the format changes somewhat.

I understand that finding a muster point to fit 1000 odd bikes is hard, but Griffith Uni is such a pain to ride out of in a large group. The cops were forced into breaking the bikes up into smaller groups for release out on to the SE Freeway, because there was a fair bit of traffic. We decided to sit at the back and so waited the 30 to 40 minutes for all bikes to leave. Once out on the motorway it became a fight for position with all the traffic, and when not riding in a large group this can become a little dangerous.

Once we turned off the M1 at Exit 38 for the journey out to the Bearded Dragon, the ride improved, but it was then only 30 odd kms, so what's the point? I just think that it is now too big to continue in it's current format and the organisers need to seriously review both the muster point and the route to keep people interested. For me, the ride is way too short and the start time of 10am is too late, forcing the riders to contend with Sunday traffic on the motorway.

If it remains the same next year, I will just give em the $10 and take off for a decent ride.

On a more positive note, I finally got to meet Connie, the lady who purchased my re-birthed VTX from Eddie and Dodge. She seems nice and from what I saw knows how to handle a bike, so I assume we will be seeing more of her and my old X on some of our rides. Unfortunately she was not riding it on Sunday due to a bad batch of watery fuel she copped so was on Eddie's VTX bling-bike.

Eddie's Place - Connie, Lyn and the Grasshopper in his getup

The queue of bikes waiting to register for the ride

Lotsa bikes

The crew

Some of the getups

Love those uggys mate!

A couple of gals

...even the blokes were into it!

Pink flag?? No way!

At the Bearded Dragon


Blingin' My Girl...

I haven't really felt the need to buy too much bling for the GSX, unlike the VTX. However, there was one thing that I decided she really needed - an LED rear light that incorporated the indicators. This would allow me to remove the standard type stork indicators and really tidy up her rear - and believe me, there is nothing sexier than a nice rear end.

Fitting the unit was a piece of cake once I removed the rear tail section of the bike - this turned out to be a bit of a pain due to the plastic retainer clips for fastening the under tray. The previous owner used screw type fasteners instead of the standard, easily removable clip type and so it was a bit of a job getting my hand in to secure the nuts. Once the tail section was off, the light fitment was simple - unscrew the stock unit and replace with the new LED unit. The light wiring was a simple plug but for the indicators, I did need to use resistors to stop the fast flash you usually get with LED's. Luckily I did have LED stork type indicators on the rear previously and so I was able to use the resistors from these.

All up a simple and cheap mod that really makes these bikes look 100% better.

This is the factory look for the rear end with all that plastic and the standard indicators

This is the cleaned up look of my rear - mmmm

She looks real sexy now!!

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Ride Free Adam

I went to a funeral yesterday arvo, the first I have been to since my old man died 11 years ago. The chapel was overflowing and the service was really moving, but it was so well done. Adam Sutton was only 26 - he lost his life doing what he loved - his bike left the road near Bairnsdale in Victoria. He was returning from Phillip Island with his old man and some mates.

I didn't know him that well, but I had ridden with him on the Honda Fours Tin Can Bay weekend for the past two years - the last time I saw him he was asking me about the GSX and considering getting one to replace his old green CB750. He sat on it and I think he had made his mind up then and there! Apparently he did end up getting hold of a new GSX about 3 months ago and that is what he went out on.

From what I knew of him he was a really nice bloke and it was hard watching his loved ones and his mates deliver their eulogies.

Remember your loved ones and ride safe.


The Lonely Roads To Mapleton

I had planned to do a ride up to Kenilworth & Mapleton on Saturday to capture video of some of the great roads north of Brisbane. I have ridden the planned route many times, knew which bits I wanted to video and was really looking forward to getting amongst it again. I also managed to talk a friend from work, Nina, in to coming along for a ride on the back.

I picked her up from her place on Saturday morning and we headed out through Samford, stopping at the Crown Hotel in Dayboro for a drink. We were the only bike parked out the front and there were very few passing - it felt kind of weird, as I am used to seeing at least a few bikes parked under the big Moreton Bay Fig's at the pub and a steady stream of passers-by riding this very popular route. We sat out on the deck enjoying our drinks and watching the few vehicles and the odd bike rounding the corner. Maybe the lack of traffic was due to Indy being on down on the Gold Coast - don't really know, but it didn't worry us coz that meant the roads were ours!

We took off from Dayboro and headed along Mt Mee Rd - this is where I was able to get my first bit of video. This part of road would be really great if the council did some re-surfacing - in it's current state it is fairly rough and it is really easy to overcook some of the corners on decent into Dayboro if not careful. Going the other way as we were, the climb up to Ocean View is not quite as hairy and these corners do allow you to throw the bike around a little, although riding two up I took it easier than what I would on my own. Check out the first video below.

We continued along for another 20 or so minutes and decided to pull up at the lookout on Mt Mee to take in the view. Not long after, a guy and girl pulled in from the same direction as us on their two bikes - an old Katana and a GSXR750. They came over for a chat and were also surprised at the lack of traffic - so much so that they planned to head back towards Dayboro and have some more fun with the curves. Good on em!

From the lookout, we followed Mt Mee Rd down to D'Aguilar and onto the highway for a short stretch, cruising through Woodford before turning onto Kilcoy-Beerwah Rd for the run up to Maleny. Again, very little traffic on the straightish, flat stretch and so I took the opportunity to stretch the GSX's legs a bit - actually, quite a bit! We reached the twisty's just before Peachester Rd and then took a left turn on to Stanley River Rd. This was magic - nothing at all going our way for the whole 20 odd kms, and this road is in good nick. It really made the whole day worthwhile. Check out the second video below for the entire stretch.

On reaching Maleny, we were getting hungry and so decided to head towards Mapleton via Montville instead of via the longer route through Kenilworth. Both Maleny and Montville were very busy (as per usual) but on riding into Mapleton, we found very few people along th main drag. We headed to the pub for some lunch and were able to score a good table out on the balcony, which I have never been able to do in my 4 or 5 prior visits. The meal was good as usual and after about an hour we decided to head back.

The route home was pretty much the same except for the diversion along Mountain View Rd instead of through Maleny, and a stop at Mary Cairncross Park to take in the views of the Glasshouse Mtns. We did strike a little bit of traffic on the D'Aguilar Hwy as well as Mt Mee Rd during our decent into Dayboro, but other than that, all roads for the entire return trip to Samford were clear - no cops either which was good.

I dropped Nina off at her place and made it home by 5:30. Another fantastic day riding a few of the better roads around Brisbane.

The view from Mary Cairncross Park on Mountain View Rd

My pillion for the day, Nina

Great view of the Glasshouse Mountains

Cool mirror shot

These cows grazed along the ridge in a line, like a giant lawn mower

The twisty bits on Mt Mee Rd just outside Dayboro

Stanley River Rd heading into Maleny

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Mater Hospital Cord Blood Bank Run

A few pics and a video from the annual Mater Hospital fund raiser. The ride started from Woolloongabba at 8am and ended at the Logan Village Bike and Hot Rod Show around midday. Was a nice little run and was good to catch up with the village people again.

The meeting point

...they just kept rollin in.

About 500 bikes showed

Different looking Z900

Painted can on this R6 grabbed my attention

Cool Buell

The flames on this Gixxer's fairing stood out.

VTX trike - cool green paint

How skinny is this??

A couple of hangers-on!

The Shake

Kataaaanaaa - really nicely restored too

Parking round the back of the first stop

Not too many hung around once we reached Logan Village

An old wartime HD with sidecar

AJS for sale

Royal Enfield - from India with love!

Grunty - a two wheeled V8

Some of the cars on show

...and the band played.

The beer enclosure was THE place to be.

The crew posed for a photo - not for me though!!




Ride For A Cure

I did ride on Sunday which was a first for me - I took a paying pillion on a ride through the Gold Coast Hinterland out to Jimboomba and then back to the Sharks Footy Club for lunch. The good thing is that the money that my pillion paid was donated to the Leukaemia Foundation.

Got a call from Eddie on Saturday afternoon asking if I wanted to do a ride with him, Lyn and John in the morning. He didn't tell me too much about it other than we would meet at the Sharks Footy Club, Southport at 7am and that the ride itself was a fund raising ride for the Leukaemia Foundation. Sunday morning started overcast but warm - I made my way up the coast to Southport arriving at the club just after 7 and at the same time as the others. We rode in and were asked if we would like to take a pillion - a pillion?? It was then explained to me that the Ride For A Cure was all about providing non-bikers the opportunity to get on the back of a bike and experience some of the better roads on the Gold Coast, for a fee. This donation of $125 would cover their breakfast, morning tea and lunch as well as a tee and cap - the remainder of the money would go to the Leukaemia Foundation. Now I thought this was a great idea, so I volunteered to take a pillion and registered.

We parked our bikes and headed towards the food, grabbing a snag on bread (with lotsa onions) and a drink. I was surprised by how many blue vested volunteers were helping out with the food, drink and merchandise. We wandered around the lot checking out the bikes and chatting to a few people. All bikes that were taking pillions were parked away from the others - all up I think there were about 70 or 80 - and there were all types, which was great for the pillions as it offered a bit more variety from which to choose. I was a little surprised at how few bikes & paying pillions there were, but I don't think they had marketed it right - I am sure you could have easily doubled numbers if word had gotten out. I had heard nothing about this ride until the day before, and I try to make myself aware of what is going on.

Anyway, after greeting, eating and wandering about, the organisers called us all in for a pre-ride brief. We were to head out to Jimboomba via Canungra and then return via Tamborine and Eagle Heights. They took a few photos of us all together and then we headed back to the bikes. This is where I met my pillion, Sylvia. She seemed very at ease and mentioned that it was the fourth time she had done this event, so I need not worry too much. She had come along with her daughter, who was participating in the event for the first time. I had to find a helmet as I had come along not expecting to be pillioning - I managed to find a spare from one of the other riders and we then geared up, jumped on the bike and were ready to roll.

The ride left Sharks at about 9am, and what a relief it was to be on the road at last! After about 5 minutes of riding, I could tell that Sylvia knew how to sit and lean on the back of a bike and so settled in for the ride. Now the ride itself was nothing spectacular to me, as I regularly ride these roads - the Smith St motorway onto the M1 to exit 73, on to Canungra then out via Mundoolun Rd to Jimboomba. I was more concentrating on riding in the group - some of these riders, mainly on cruisers*, were starting to worry me, riding way too close and taking my line. I eventually decided to move away from them and position myself elsewhere in amongst riders who I felt more at ease with.

We rolled into Jimboomba and out onto the sportsfield for morning tea - and it was impressive. Donuts, cakes, fruit, drinks - just about all you would need after a long ride, let alone the short squirt we had just completed. But I would never knock back a free feed!! After about 40 minutes the call went out and we hit the road for the return run.

The ride back was a lot more fun - through Tamborine, then the climb up the mountain which although slow was still good, along past the Eagle Heights Pub and then down via the Tamborine-Oxenford Rd to the motorway. I hardly even knew I still had a pillion on the back - I thought she handled the ride very well. We arrived back at the Sharks Footy Club just on midday. Sylvia got off the bike and told me that she had a great time and really enjoyed the ride - I was happy with the result of being able to take a usually non-riding pillion for a squirt whilst raising money for a worthy cause.

Unfortunately I was unable to use the voucher for lunch at Sharks I was given as I had something organised - I caught up with Eddie, Lyn and John, passed on the voucher to them and took off for Kat's place. I will be doing this one again next year for sure.

*Now for you cruiser riders, I'm sure you all realise that the comment above was not a swipe at you - I ride regularly with people who own cruisers and feel very safe amongst them. It was about the skill level of a few of these guys, especially when I had someone on the back of my bike that I really did not know. I did not feel comfortable being hemmed in amongst them whilst they were treating it as more of a race than a leisurely ride - it just so happens that these guys were on cruisers and appeared to me to be the weekend-warrior type, so I took it upon myself to get away from them.

I must be gettin old coz I reckon I'm over the close group runs.


Some Real Action From The Road...

Well I've been playing around with my new camera for the past few days trying to determine the best place to mount it. After much stuffing around I have decided that on the bars is the best place, mainly because I wanted to include the lean angles in the shot. I had previously trialed my helmet and the headlight as mounts.

The video below is part of my run into work this morning - I decided to add music to it as the recorded audio is pretty crappy. Overall, I'm happy with the picture - it's not TV quality by any means, but I didn't want to have to part with huge wads of cash.

Let me know what you think!


Confederate Motor Company

A couple of stylish looking machines by a company with a passion for design and engineering. Check their website here for more pics and info.

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Far out - I spent Saturday arvo watching my footy team get hammered when I could have been doing something a lot more enjoyable like the Barbwire Poker Run put on by the Vietnam Vets MC. I did this last year and really enjoyed it and from the pics it looks like this years was just as good. There's a few familiar faces in amongst the pics from the day as well!!

Hope you guys had a much better day than what I had.