April 20, 2016


Ever since riding my brother's LeMans MKI, I've become a big Guzzi fan. The handling, the steering precision, that amazingly smooth engine with its cylinder heads coming up from below, just waiting for a pat on the head. And don't get me started on the sound...especialy if it's amplified by a pair of Contis.

Ahh Guzzi, mon amour!

But this post is not about my brother's LeMans. It's about my very own Moto Guzzi, specifically a 1981 V1000 G5. The 81 model is the second series, which differs from the first series for the cast alloy wheels and the black side bags.
The G5 is almost identical to the I-Convert, but has a 5 gear gearbox (hence G5) instead of the automatic 2 speed gearbox, and has conventional footrests instead of the floorboards of the Convert.

The story goes that I've been infected by the "Guzzite" and it has been lingering in my head for months. The fact that my brother just bought a much bigger garage to store the bikes, encouraged me to search the classifieds for my very own Guzzi. The smaller V35, V50, V65 were too small and the various modern Guzzis were too.....well, too modern.
My final choice was between a T3 (beautifully restored, but with over 100.000km) and an equally pristine G5 with only 37.000 original km. Needless to say, the G5 won.

What makes me write this post is the fact that in 5 days I will fly to Italy for my yearly holiday, and rarely have I been so excited to go home. So excited in fact, that I've planned a 5 day GuzziTour around north Italy and this is what I'd like to share with you today.


The first day will be the longest ride (274km) and a Guzzi triumph, with a visit to the Guzzi HQ in Mandello del Lario and the Guzzi museum. 5 minutes away from there is the Antica Officina B&B, where Carlo Guzzi, one of the founders of Moto Guzzi built his first motorcycles almost 100 years ago. Antica Officina, which translates to 'ancient garage' is now a B&B and a small museum.

The second day we'll ride about 170km to the Santuario D'Oropa, a monastery in the piedmontese mountains. We'll pass the night in Castello di Montecavallo, a farmstay/castle in the vicinity of Biella.

Santuario D'Oropa

Castello di Montecavallo

Day 3 will be another special day. It will start with a visit to Damanhur, a commune, ecovillage and spiritual communityThey gained fame in 1992 through the disclosure of their secret excavation of an extensive underground temple, the Temples of Humankind, which was begun in 1978 under complete secrecy. The Italian authorities ordered construction work to stop because it had been constructed without planning approval, although artwork could continue. Retroactive permission was subsequently granted. (Wiki)
The cherry on the cake will be a night in the famous and utterly beautiful Castello di Pavone.

D'Annunzio's abode
Day 4 we'll ride on the motorway for 250km to the Lake Garda to another farmstay and some relaxing hours on the banks of Italy's biggest lake.

On the last day, we're going to visit 'Il Vittoriale', a stunning estate of D'Annunzio, one of Italy's most famous writers, a poet, journalist, playwright and soldier during World War I.

5 days of riding, nice food, culture and spiritual renewal. I could be the best trip of my life or a giant flop. Reality might be very different, but this is the plan at least. Hopefully it won't rain (too much) and hopefully my trusty G5 will live up to its reputation of being a reliable touring bike.

Fingers crossed!

April 17, 2016

DBS full exhaust system for Honda NSR150SP

I really like my NSR150SP. It takes me back to the times when at 16, I used to ride my Gilera SP02 in the golden age for 125cc 2 stroke racing bikes in Italy.

Maybe it's due to a distorted perception after all these years, but I wasn't quite convinced with the power output of my NSR. I expected more... and I wanted more!

So, the obvious first step was to look for an aftermarket exhaust to free the bike and let all those 30+ horses run unrestricted. After some 'window shopping", I found a full stainless steel exhaust system with aluminium muffler made by DBS for an acceptable price of 5.700Baht (shipping in Thailand included).
Communication with Mr Visit was smooth and straightforward and after about 10 days I got my exhaust.

Packing was sufficient.

Straight away I was impressed by the overall quality of the pipe.

Very nice welds!

Soundcheck with the original exhaust

The first thing you notice when taking off the original pipe is the weight. The DBS weights probably a 1/4 of the Honda exhaust!

Soundcheck with the DBS pipe.


The DBS stainless steel exhaust and aluminium muffler is a very fine piece of equipment and performance is on a par with its good looks. Installation was pretty easy. The holes on the flanges were a tiny bit too small, but it took only 5 minutes and a dremel to enlarge them enough. Fitting my NSR with this pipe gave it back its vigor and spirit. Going up the RPMs feels easy and smooth, especially around 7.000 to 10.000rpm. This is how my bike is supposed to sound and perform. Recommended!

After about 30minutes of test riding the bike, the color on the back tip of the muffler started to peel off. Mr. Visit offered to get it repainted at no extra cost.

EDIT 2: The exchange was done fast and painlessly. I now used the new muffler for several months and it's just like the first day.
I can now say the pipe has improved midrange and dramatically increased top end power. I'm very happy with it!

April 1, 2016

Sunmaster 14: seat cowl ready

It took a while, but it is finally finished. Designed by me and built by my aluminium parts supplier, it now got a custom made leather seat made by famous Thai custom builders "The Sports".

They did a great job with this brown leather seat with diamond stitching and a classy "Yamaha" aluminium tag.