Ever since the original appearance of its first single-cylinder engine (followed by its twin cylinders), the Harley-Davidson has distinguished itself with the introduction of models known for their trustworthiness and endurance and by how many competitions they won. In spite of the competition that sprang up in later years from America, the United Kingdom and Japan, Harley-Davidson has prevailed because of the innovations it has introduced (at times belatedly, but always the fruit of sensible reflection). The company has endured, too, because it diversified its family of motorcycles to make them correspond to the public's expectations. All you need to do is climb onto the saddle and rev up a Harley-Davidson to discover a new motorcycling universe, where the concept of pleasure reveals new meaning. This is the universe that this book invites you to discover, through the history of the brand's main models (embodying nearly 110 years of motorcycling adventures), and touching upon touring, sport, customization, and a simple and outright passion for motorcycles.
Author of Honda Mini Trail: Enthusiast's Guide, Jeremy Polson has put together another vintage Honda guide. It covers the third-best-selling Honda in American Honda history, the long-running Mini Trail CT-70, along with the CL, SL, and XL 72-cc motorcycles manufactured from 1969 to 1994. Polson begins with a brief introduction of the models that led to the first CL-70, and then jumps into a thorough analysis of the many models and iterations that Honda offered through the years. With more than 25 years of experience collecting, restoring, and selling more than 200 small-displacement Hondas, Polson is the ideal author for this must-have look at a group of Honda's most popular motorcycles.
In addition to the hard facts, this book is filled with many rare photos that track the evolution of Honda's 72-cc motorcycles and unravels their mystery. Rare models covered include the first CT-70 "Silver Tags" with more than 30 features not found on the majority of later-model CT-70s, as well as many other low-production 72-cc motorcycles.
What's old is new again, and the newest trend on the block is Café Racers.
Written by well-known motorcycle and automotive author Doug Mitchel, How to Build a Café Racer starts with a history lesson. While those first bikes were built in the UK for racing from café to café, the current rage for Café Racers has definitely spread to the US.
Converting a stock motorcycle to a Café Racer requires more than a fairing and a few decals. The book starts with chapters on planning and choosing an appropriate bike, followed by chapters that detail the modifications that will likely be embraced by anyone converting a stocker to a rocker. From shocks and tires to engine modifications, Doug's book lays out each type of modification and how it's best carried through.
The center of the book holds a gallery of finished bikes. These are not just Triumphs or Nortons, but nearly every brand imaginable from Japan, Italy, the UK, and Germany.
The final chapters include two, start-to-finish Café builds. This is the chance for the reader to see how professional shops take a stock Honda, Triumph, or Ducati and convert it into a fast, sexy, and functional Café Racer, ready to race from cafe to cafe on Saturday night, or around the race track on Sunday afternoon.
When Honda released the CX500, the sales brochure stated “First into the Future,” and described the bike as a road sports V-twin. Honda’s first venture into the V-twin engine market, with water cooling and shaft drive, was certainly different from their previous twin- and four-cylinder models. Known for its good handling and fuel economy, the low-maintenance Honda was comfortable, loved by tourers and couriers alike and, after overcoming early teething troubles, developed a reputation for reliability. Sportier models incorporating turbochargers were also released for those looking for an additional adrenaline rush. After 30 years, there’s now a resurgence of interest in the CX models, both from restorers and custom builders, with aftermarket café racer kits available, too.
The techniques, tips and tricks used by an experienced restorer will save you time and money. You’ll see that you don’t need expert knowledge or a fully fitted workshop for a restoration project. Packed with photographs and detailed instructions, this book is your perfect guide from start to finish.
In 1969 the Honda Motor Company launched a motorcycle that many consider to be the world's first Superbike. The Honda CB750 had the first mass-produced 4-cylinder inline engine, a single overhead camshaft with four carburetors, a 4-into-4 exhaust system and came with electric start and front disc brakes as standard. This specification set the bar higher than had been seen before on a production motorcycle and led to the other Japanese motorcycle manufacturers introducing their own 4-cylinder motorcycles, albeit some time later. Following the success for the original CB750, Honda went on to produce a range of motorcycles using SOHC 4-cylinder engines. All with their own characteristics, they proved to be reliable and smooth-running, and even today they can offer reliable transport on modern roads if restored correctly. Now with some examples more than 40 years old, many enthusiasts wish to restore these classic machines. How to Restore Honda Fours has been written to guide the enthusiast through his or her restoration of these fine classic motorcycles.
Indian Motorcycle: America's First Motorcycle Company tells the complete story of America's first mass-produced motorcycle maker, from its start as a bicycle manufacturer to the purchase of the brand by Polaris Industries in 2011 and the subsequent new Indian motorcycles. In the early years of the 20th century, Indian dominated the world's racetracks, earning the brand a worldwide reputation for quality, performance, reliability, and technical innovation. The once-mighty company fell on hard times, however, and in 1953 was forced to file for bankruptcy. The Indian brand never quite died, though, thanks in large part to fanatically devoted enthusiasts, who tried to resurrect it for more than half a century. Finally Polaris, maker of the highly regarded Victory brand of motorcycles, purchased the brand and released the Chief and Scout, models that once again restored Indian to its rightful place in the motorcycle pantheon.
Kawasaki W, H & Z is the story of the air-cooled “big” Kawasaki bikes in definitive detail, researched and written in Japan with the full cooperation of the factory. This series of models put the Kawasaki company on the map during the 1960s and 1970s, helping it survive a difficult era that saw hundreds of Japanese motorcycle makers reduced to just four.
Successful immediately, these models defended Kawasaki’s honor on the track as well as in the showroom, handing the company numerous world championship victories. The series was recently revived as part of a retro boom, and a new machine has been launched, delivering the same thrill and charm as its predecessors.
Paul Ritter's autobiography tells the story of the early days of Superbike racing. Ritter raced a Ducati 750SS and 900SS during the formative days of American Superbike racing. He shocked the racing community by winning the first AMA pro Superbike race he entered. His quick success, good nature and competitive spirit made him one of racing's beloved characters.
His account of those days gives readers an up close and personal look into the days when professional racers in the sport were weekend warriors who traveled on shoestring budgets and fueled their bikes with passion and (if they were good) a few dollars of winnings. Ritter tells of racing with legends like Reg Pridmore, Wes Cooley, Mike Baldwin and Keith Code.
Nearly 20 years after retiring from top-level racing, Ritter was hurt in tragic accident at a vintage race that left him without the use of his legs. His story of dealing with a tragic loss is as powerful and inspiring as his remarkable success on the race track.
Ritter's passion for riding, racing and life carries through his book. For anyone who loves motorcycles or appreciates a great story, Racing the Gods is an engrossing, inspirational tale.
The Art of BMW Motorcycles presents the rolling sculptures that are BMW motorcycles in studio portraits, each bike accompanied by a short history of the machine.
All the classic bikes are here: pre-World War II BMWs like the R5 that defined performance in that era; the military R12 that carried the Wehrmacht as it blitzkrieged its way across Europe; the R75M that accompanied Rommel’s Panzers in North Africa; the Earles-forked R69S that offered the perfect platform for mounting a Steib sidecar; the R90S café racer; and the GS (Gelände Sport) series that launched a dual-sport revolution. All the bike families are covered: the side-valve machines from the early years, the early overhead-valve performance bikes, the postwar Airheads and Oilheads, the four-cylinder and six-cylinder touring bikes, the early pushrod singles, the modern overhead-cam singles, the latest parallel twins, and inline-four cylinder sport bikes.
From the first model (the R32 that launched BMW's motorcycle dynasty) to the latest (and fastest) one (the World Super Bike-dominating S1000RR), this book captures nearly a century of motorcycling excellence.
More than 60 years ago in Bologna, Italy, a small company called Ducati began manufacturing simple, inexpensive 50cc motorcycles … really no more than 2-stroke-powered bicycles. Since then, Ducati has evolved into one of the most storied names in the motorcycling world, its lineup of beautiful machines revered for their technical excellence and extreme performance. In The Art of Ducati, Ducati expert Ian Falloon teams with renowned British photographer James Mann to present a gorgeously illustrated, wonderfully curated review of more than six decades of Ducati excitement. From the single-cylinder bikes of the 1950s and 1960s to the bevel-drive twins of the 1970s and early 1980s to the high-performance bikes of the 21st century, The Art of Ducati showcases a motorcycle marque that has never rested on its laurels. Ducati's style and technology have constantly evolved, engineering timeless classics like the 900SS, Darmah, Mike Hailwood Replica, 851, 916, Monster, and ST sports touring series, bikes that laid the foundation for today's cutting-edge models: the Panigale superbike, Multistrada adventure bike, all-new Monster, Hypermotard, and Diavel power cruiser. While there's no end in sight for Ducati's dominance, The Art of Ducati pays homage to their past six-plus decades of masterful motorcycle engineering.
A lavishly illustrated and definitive look at the design evolution of the racing motorcycle. The dynamic between competition and design has always fueled the evolution of racing motorcycles and inspired astonishing feats of design and engineering. This book traces the development of the sport bike, from the earliest French motorcycles to the dominance of British machinery in the 1930s, the exotic Italian motorcycles of the 1950s and 1960s, the influence of American racing in the 1970s and 1980s, and today’s Japanese superbikes.
More than 50 classic motorcycles — from Harley-Davidsons to Peugeots, Velocettes, Moto Guzzis, BMWs, Kawasakis and Ducatis — are presented chronologically illustrated with stunning studio photographs that present the machines as works of art and wonders of design in themselves. They are accompanied by rare and beautiful archival images that place the subjects in the context of classic races, rallies and motorcycle shows, and essays reveal the legends behind the machines. Some of the championship motorcycles featured include the 1902 Manon, the 1922 Harley-Davidson 8-valve, the 1935 Terrot 500, the 1948 AJS Porcupine, the 1954 Moto Guzzi V8, the 1965 Honda GP 250, the 1976 Suzuki RK67, the 1986 Cagiva GP and the 1990 Ducati Supermono.
About the Author
Phillip Tooth has been a journalist for more than 20 years. For 10 years he was editor of U.K. magazines Classic Bike and The Classic MotorCycle, and also Motorcyclenews.com, before becoming a freelance writer so that he could spend more time with his motorcycles. He now writes for magazines throughout the world, including Klassic Motorrad (Germany), Moto Légende (France), BMW Bikes (Japan), Motorcycle Classics (US), and Motor (Netherlands). Jean-Pierre Pradères ran a studio in Paris where his clients included famous fashion house Hermès, and now devotes his time to photographing motorcycles and bicycles. His work has also been featured in the Guggenheim's The Art of the Motorcycle and The Golden Age of the Hand-Built Bicycle.
Although manufactured for only one year, 1974, the Ducati 750 Super Sport was immediately touted as a future classic. It was a pioneer motorcycle – expensive and rare, and produced by Ducati’s race department to celebrate victory in the 1972 Imola 200 Formula 750 race. Owing to its uniqueness and rarity, the 750 SS has become extremely expensive and desirable, fetching prices beyond the most expensive contemporary Ducati; for Ducatisti, it is the Holy Grail.