TRF ride around Kineton & Gloucestershire

I know there’s been a lot of stuff about the DRZ recently but its a new toy and the weathers starting to get a bit mucky for the shiny ones…

So met up with a few of the Gloucestershire TRF (Trail Riders Fellowship) members the other weekend, had a great time, Cliff lead the ride on the road sections while his son Iain led the off road trails, 6 of us in total, a good time was had by all and looking forward to the next one.

On any Sunday

A little bit more fun on the DRZ this Sunday, I met up with Justin on his KTM and we had a little blat up through the lanes in the Stroud valley, great fun…including my first ‘off’..good to get that out of the way, no damage done to me or the bike as it was all pretty low speed and a soft landing.

Membership of the TRF (Trail Riders Fellowship) has now been sorted and hopefully will be joining them on a ride shortly.

As always the camera was running so knocked up a little video…

Thunderbird 24,000 mile service

Well, more like 26,000 mile service as with the Italy trip then the LEJOG trip it kinda got away from me a bit.

Contacted David aka MuddySump he did the 18k service, click on the link to find out more but David travels around the countryside servicing Triumph motorcycles, because he’s Triumph trained does mean that not only do you benefit with cheaper servicing cost you do still keep your factory warranty intact. If you need a service give him a call, you won’t be disappointed.

The service,Valve clearances checked (all within spec) all the fluids changed, bearings greased, everything thoroughly checked over, arrived at 9.00 and finished a 4,00, don’t think that the big service on these Thunderbirds is a small job, it isn’t.

If you got a Triumph and need a service give MuddySump a call, he’s on Facebook and Twitter,,,

24k service
24k service
24k service 1
24k service 1

New bike… 2002 Suzuki DRZ400e

Suzuki DRZ 400e
Suzuki DRZ 400e

Been thinking about this for a while and now with winter on its way it seems the perfect time to explore some of the green lanes we have, a hidden network of roads, mostly only passable in either 4 wheel drives or off road motorcycles.

Of course having friends ‘encouraging’ you doesn’t help, thanks Justin !

Anyway first little run out today, nothing too challenging, a run up the old Fosseway to the Cotswold Airport for a cuppa in the AV8 cafe and then back again, only about 50 miles round trip but great fun and looking forward to the next outing…looks like a membership to the TRF is on the cards, took the drift camera out with me as well, first time I’ve done that for a while too…


I read an article the other day that more motorcycles are stolen each year than are bought brand new, it takes on average 20 seconds to steal a bike worth £10,000, 80% are stolen from outside the owners home and of the estimated 20,000 bikes stolen every year 12,000 are never seen again, broken up for parts I guess, or shipped out overseas if it was a Ducati Panigale or such like..

So some while ago I was looking at additional security as we all do from time to time, weighing up the pro’s and cons of alarm systems, mostly cons it has to be said, doesn’t seem to matter what alarm system you have they all seem to cause hassle at some point…even if its just with French radio masts ! came across the Oxford tracker, put a post up a while ago, see here, looked good but I wanted something a little more professional, not knocking the Oxford product at all..I certainly decided a tracker was for me…further looking led me to Biketrac, a far more complete system…the unit itself is small enough to be hidden on most bikes but once wired in tidily you wouldn’t even know it wasn’t part of the bikes components, very clever, you do have to be a little careful with the positioning as you don’t want too much metal on top of the unit as this can stop the GPS signal, although from a recovery point of view this isn’t too much of a problem as the unit uses GPS, GPRS, GSM and RF signals but as the GPS signal is used on the tracking maps, that can be accessed through their secure web page, some drop out does occur if travelling under a heavy tree canopy for example…frustrated me for a while until I had a chat with the guys, once explained it all made sense..


You can see a few places where the signal was lost…

The unit self arms, you can set a geofence around it or temporally disable if, for travelling on a ferry for example but as soon as you turn the ignition on it auto arms again…the unit has a 30 day back up battery, this can also be remotely charged so it can be used on things without a power supply like dirt bikes or any plant and equipment.

Other features include, battery voltage monitor, also a biker down feature, if the bike does over more than 80 degrees with the ignition on it will send a text to your nominated person saying there may be an issue, you can turn this feature off though…

A couple of occasions I have moved the bike, or had work done on it and forgot to disable it, the alerts come through in minutes by email and text along with a phone call to see if every was OK

The cost of the unit to buy is £299 you will need the optional wiring harness if your going to hard wire it to the bike. the monthly subscriptions start from £99 a year but if you have 3 years subscription its £229.99, so a decent saving to be had, Biketrac is Thatcham catagory 6&7 accredited so should save you a few quid on your insurance but as its only 3 wires to connect if you want to install yourself its no problem.

Motorcycle News did a test back last year, view it here….personally I think its a good bit of kit,ignoring the initial purchase price the running costs are under £100 a year, less than a pint of beer a week 🙂

Contact info for Biketrac 



Phone 01327 855586

The Distinguished Gentleman’s Ride (Bristol)

What a great day !

In the early morning sunshine both myself and Justin headed of on our Bonnies, mine leaning towards a cafe racer and Justin’s heading towards a scrambler.

Not a lot of protective gear was worn by me but as the ride was a low speed affair and the route to and from the event was again low speed ish 🙂 

The dress code was ‘dapper’ and with the help of the local charity shops the look was achieved although the facial hair didn’t last the day, Love the jacket, that’s going to be worn again for sure. 

Arriving at Gordano Services there were already quite a few bikes there, soon started chatting to others, should of taken more photos as there were some fine machines present but it was good to chat to others, good chilled out start to the day, along with a decent coffee of course..

The ride wasn’t a particularly long one, highlight was crossing the Clifton Suspension Bridge and we certainly turned a few heads as we headed down Park Street in Clifton..great day and all for a great cause, thanks to those that sponsored me and help raised $2.2 million worldwide, you can still donate if you wish..

A few pictures from the day..

Me on the Bonnie

Morning Coffee
Me on the Bonnie and good to go
Justin on his Bonnie
All very dapper
Chilled start to the day
Some of the bikes
A few more bikes

Filtering, Ride to Survive

Excellent piece written by Glos Thinkbike..we have had some discussions in the past on filtering, some say it’s dangerous others say it’s why you have a bike, if your not comfortable doing it don’t…give this a read though and other stuff on his site..Thinkbike do good work to promote road safety for all road users..
We have seen many articles, some from law firms stating ‘Filtering is legal’ these articles have caused much celebration amongst bikers but how many of those articles have gone on to define the legal definition of filtering? Rule 88 Highway Code; when filtering in slow-moving traffic, take care and keep your speed low. This rule doesn’t really […]

Goodwood revival

Always wanted to go to this but only remember at the last minute and as it sells out well in advance there’s no hope of getting any tickets..

This year however I was fortunate to be given some tickets for Christmas, they have been stuck on the fridge for some months but eventually the day was an ‘improving picture’ which means a wet ride first thing, wasn’t to bad though, put the screen on the Thunderbird as most of the 130 miles or so was on motorways or fast A roads and a stop at Loomies for breakfast helped too.

Beating the traffic in to the event, of course being on a bike helped a lot. Great bike parking facilities, steel roadway to park on and a helmet park, donations for charity of course.

The whole event is huge, you need a couple of days there at least, and you really need to dress up, anything between the 1930’s up to the 1960’s, it’s a great atmosphere, so much going on outside the main circuit but the classic cars and bikes are just awesome, just an incredible event, if you ever get the chance go..

Few pictures, shaky videos and a tracking map…

Ton up boys on Triumphs of course !
Motorcycle racing…
60’s machines and they still move on..
No holding back..
The racing was close..
Busy and the dress code was anything from the 1930’3 to 1960’s
Not just cars & bikes…
I’m no plane expert..
But I know a Spitfire when I see one…
Lots of Spitfires
One of the biggest collections of Spitfires…
Ferraris of course..
Lots of Ferraris..
Old BMW’s..
I liked this…
Motorcycle pits…

Tracking Map Goodwood Revival
Tracking Map Goodwood Revival

Bovington Tank Museum & Bike Meet

After Saturdays trip out to The Dorset Steam Fair and my ride in a Scorpion Tank it just so happened that Bovington Tank Museum were having a motorcycle ride in day this was also the selected monthly meeting place for the Idiot Collective, a motley crew of assorted motorcycle enthusiasts, that don’t take themselves to seriously.

Meeting bright and early I met Allan, Gary, Tony, Kerrie & Justin at Junction 18 on the M4 and set off for the Lock Inn for breakfast…well, it would be rude not too, I think it was pretty much boatmans breakfasts all round (check out the menu)

Breakfast done we headed down to the Tank museum in Dorset, great weather for it, sun was out and it was lovely ride down, bit of traffic around but that’s to be expected, popular holiday spot.

Parking up at the museum on the grass, pucks provided, a much needed coffee was bought and an hour or so chilling out on the grass talking bikes before we went into the museum. Its a well laid out museum with plenty to see, you wouldn’t think there were so many different types of tank !

Few pictures from the day, along with Kerrie, The sharp shooter…

Sharp shooting Kerrie
Sharp shooting Kerrie
Tank 4
Tank 4
Tank 3
Tank 3
Tank 5
Tank 5
Tank 1
Tank 1
Tank 2
Tank 2

Bumped into Kurt and his good lady while wandering around, always seem to bump into them somewhere once a year !

As Kerrie & Justin had to get back for the kids the ride back was a little more ‘progressive’ with the holiday traffic not holding us up too much, me and Allan finished the day up with a stop for some food and drink in Bath…Excellent day out, good company & fantastic weather.

The Great Dorset Steam Fair

Had a last minute invite from my sisters and brother in law Andy, to join them at the steam fair in Blandford Forum, Dorset today. It meant an early start, leaving my house just gone 6am to meet them as they are exhibitors in the military section and had to get in early. Firing the Bonnie up at that time of the morning with her straight through pipes was done as quietly as possible..not easy, made good time to Blandford and was soon parked and in the show…it’s a huge show, biggest in the country I believe, so big you won’t see it all in a day..took a few pictures… 

Steam Engines everywhere.
I’ll have one in each size !
A fire breathing wheelie truck
Heavy Horse ploughing
I even found a bike noisier than the Bonnie..this was really loud ! 

It was a Douglas…some king of grass tracker perhaps, was bloody loud that’s for sure !

Last of all Andys tanks.. 

Andys Tanks

….and then I was offered a ride around the show arena in one, well, it would have be rude to refuse 🙂 awesome…no pictures or film though as it was decided iPhones and tanks probably don’t mix to well, great fun….definitely be back next year..


Travels & Tribulations on a Triumph Motorcyle

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