August 23, 2016

Omega Racer is 4!

Omega Racer is 4 years old, and to celebrate we've decided to give away free Omega T-shirts with every tank, seat or helmet you purchase!

August 17, 2016

Bubba's final trip

Bubba's story has come full circle. After 3 years on the move, passing through Italy, Romania, Greece, Thailand and Australia, he found his final garage stop at my brother's garage. I entrusted him to my brother because I thought it was quite fitting to the whole story. My brother is a work animal and rarely enjoys a holiday, having never even used an aeroplane. In fact, it's safe to say, bubba has travelled more in 3 years than my brother in 40! On top of that he just acquired a new garage to have more space for his bike collection and this I thought, would make the perfect inauguration present.
Unfortunately, during his last (and longest) stay in Australia, no pictures were taken. The only consolation is that he got the signatures of Freddie Spencer and Steve Parish.

The cherry on the cake though, is that his story was just published on Germany's largest motorcycle magazine 'MOTORRAD' (issue 17, 2016), the very same that sent him to me in Thailand 3 years ago.
Funnily, they put a picture of my brother but used my name in the caption. We do look similar, but still.... :-)

July 7, 2016

Project SUNMASTER 14: Completed

It's been one and a half years in the making, with up and downs and lots of newly gained experiences, but it's finally done. You've probably seen some of the work I've done here on the blog but I've been careful not to give too much away.

Last week she had an appointment with the guys @ FAT pictures, who shot some great photos at an abandoned car dealer.

People are quick to label everything out of the ordinary as cafĂ© racers these days, but my bike is definitely not one. My inspiration comes from the racing bikes of the 60’s and 70’s, where every part had the specific objective to make the bike go faster. My goal was to create a bike with simple, timeless lines and with an eye for the essential.

The first thing you notice are the sensual curves of the one-off custom made aluminium fairing, made by the same supplier who also crafted the brushed aluminium tank and the seat cowl. The leather seat was made by the guys at The Sports, one of Thailand’s best customizers. The tank strap, the plexiglass fender under the seat and the tank badge on the other hand, are my own work.

The frame has been powder coated….3 times! “The first shop I’ve sent the frame to, managed to do an awful job, twice! It was only when I found Cog’n’Roll, a powder coating shop in Bangkok, that it turned out the way I had envisioned it. I think this satin dark bronze color looks great and matches the dark brown leather parts on the bike.

The engine was stripped down, cleaned and rebuilt and while the internals haven’t been touched, lots of goodies have been added on the outside. It now inhales through an open Keihin FCR39 carburetor and exhales through a powerful sounding megaphone muffler. Several engine add-ons like an oil cooler and bigger sized cooling fins ensure the proper cooling in Thailand’s hot weather.

A special mention should go to Nose at Paknam 2 Wheels, the only guy I trust to work on my SR. He got me out of an electrical nightmare and I’m forever grateful for that.

Sunmaster 14 doesn’t just look the part, it runs on quality parts as a racing bike should: Akront rims, Ohlins rear shocks and WP progressive springs at the front, Over rear sets, as well as a lightweight aluminium swingarm. 

This is my first custom job from the ground up. It has been a challenge at times and a great learning experience. I must say, I’m very happy with the final result.
Next week it will go to Siam Discovery, a very big shopping centre in Bangkok, to be shown as part of an exhibition called "Art on the move". Fitting, very fitting.

A detail shot of the seat cowl and the real leather upholstering done by The Sports.
The Yamaha aluminium badge was something I had laying around and wanted to incorporate it.

A freely breathing FCR39 makes a lot of difference!

All lines flowing the way they should

The leather tank strap I made

The proud owner :-)

The Plexiglas fender I made

The brass badge I made 2 days before the shooting. It looks better from a distance, believe me.

June 7, 2016

GuzziTour 2016

After a week back in Thailand and the effects of jet lag mostly gone, I now find the time and peace of mind to look back at what has been an amazing 5 weeks holiday in Italy. It's been especially memorable because there was my "new" Moto Guzzi G5 waiting for me.
Let me say it right from the start: the G5 is an amazing bike! The level of comfort, the handling, the majestic performed far beyond my expectations and I couldn't have been happier. I wish and hope MG will start producing such gorgeous bike again in the future.

The very first ride on my G5 around South Tyrol

On the 9th of May, my wife and I started a 5 day journey through Northern Italy.

The first day took us from Bolzano to Mandello del Lario (260km), the birthpace of Moto Guzzi and still the only place manufacturing MG. We arrived right in front of the MG gates at 3pm. That's the time the museum opens, only for 1 hour, every day. 95 years of motorcycle history is a lot to take in in only 1 hour, so we had to rush through it a bit.

Passo del Tonale

Lake Como

Carlo Guzzi at Mandello del Lario

Antica Officina

Some highlights at the Guzzi Museum

Taking orders for new Guzzis

This really reminded me of a pharaoh taken over by the Borgs

For our accommodation I chose Antica Officina (Antique Workshop). This is where Carlo Guzzi came to build his first bikes with the current owner's grand uncle. Giuseppe and his wife were great hosts and made us feel welcome right from the arrival. Giuseppe gave me a tour of the whole workshop, the cellar and even the attic.

The next day we rode to Biella, to the beautiful Castle of Montecavallo (170km). Montecavallo is a B&B and a vineyard. The owner and only person living in the castle came right up to us and started telling us stories of her extensive bike travels throughout Europe. What a great start, I thought.
The accommodation was absolutely top notch and in retrospective, my favourite place during our trip.

So far we got miserable weather and the third day was no exception. 60km took us from one castle to another. Castello di Pavone was quite different from Montecavallo, though. It was more upscale and maybe because of that, we felt a bit detached from the whole experience. The scenery was breathtaking nonetheless.

Thursday we rode to the nearby mountains, where the 8th Wonder of the World lies underground. Damanhur, a spiritual commune founded 40 years ago have continuously been building the Temples of Humankind, crafting a truly unique place, full of artistic mastery and spiritual energy. Our jaws dropped when we first stepped in and only closed after we came back up. Taking pictures inside the temple was not allowed, so I took some from the net. I wholeheartedly recommend visiting this place!

In the afternoon I rode on a motorway for the first time in my life. Not the most exciting of rides I have to admit, but riding my G5 makes even the most boring stretch of road a great experience.
After about 260km we arrived at the shores of lake Garda, the biggest lake in Italy, to the farm stay La Filanda, where we spent the last night of our GuzziTour.

15km from home we finally got the first rays of light and a stretch of dry road. Better late than never I guess

Obviously there would be much more to say and tales to tell, but it would take up too much space and a lot of your time.
If you have any comments, feel free to say something below.

See ya