TAG : richard backus


Looking Forward 2020

When I first got into motorcycling, a major draw was the solo nature of riding, the opportunity to head out on my own to discover the world around me. I was already in love with riding on two wheels — my first job in junior high school was at a bicycle shop — and the self-powered part of ...


(re) Learning the Basics

On a sunny Saturday morning this February, I busied myself getting the 1974 Laverda 750SF ready for the first Wheelsport Vintage Motorcycle Club ride of the new year. Championed by Tech Editor Keith Fellenstein, the club meets on the third Saturday of the month at Gaslight Gardens, a bar housed ...


Old Motorcycle Parts and Passion

Working on a friend’s recent “vintage” Japanese purchase got me wondering if “true” classics like the Norton Commando and Triumph Bonneville are easier to own than we acknowledge. No question they can have their share of mechanical gremlins and dodgy electrics, but compared to the ...


Two of the Same: 1983 and 1984 Laverda RGS

My interest in the storied Laverda motorcycle brand is no secret. Launched in the energetic post-World War II European market when motorcycles were the personal transportation of choice owing to their affordability, Laverda went on to become one of the most famous of the many Italian motorcycle ...


Vintage Bikes Are Cool. The People Are Cooler

Vintage motorcycles are cool. No argument there. Cooler still are the people who collect and ride them, a fact that hit home again in a big way during the 4th Annual Motorcycle Classics Ride ’Em, Don’t Hide ’Em Getaway this past August, a two-day romp through Pennsylvania’s beautiful ...


2019 Ride ’Em, Don’t Hide ’Em Getaway

Way back in August 2016, we invited readers to join us at Seven Springs Mountain Resort in Pennsylvania for the very first Ride 'Em, Don't Hide 'Em Getaway. More than 80 readers showed up that first year, and we're thrilled that you keep coming back every year since. Our 4th Annual Getaway was ...


Looking for the Right Bike

My modest stable of motorcycles is occupied by less than a half dozen machines, each one bought not so much on a predicated search for that specific bike but the simple expedience of opportunity. The 1983 Laverda RGS is the dream machine, a bike I never thought I’d own until one miraculously ...


Learning Curves on the Training Course

Hard as it is for me to accept — because it means damn, I’m getting old — I’ve been riding motorcycles for over 40 years. When I got my motorcycle license at the tender age of 18, motorcycle safety classes were still something of a rarity. They were available, but at least in the ...


Shifting Gears

For the first time since I can remember, I’m heading into spring with every bike in my garage — even my 1981 Honda Express moped! — running. The ’83 Laverda RGS got a top-end freshening last fall (and while the engine was out, a frame strip and repaint, along with new steering head ...


Forward Motion as a Community

One of the best – if not the best – aspects of motorcycling is the people. When I first got into motorcycles, the motivation was simple: I wanted to ride. An immediate and unanticipated bonus was being introduced to the motorcycling community, and discovering what an incredible resource of ...

Motorcycle Classics Magazine

Featuring the most brilliant, unusual and popular motorcycles ever made!