2019 Strathalbyn SwapMeet and short ride...

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Prof
Founder, Choppers Australia
Posts: 5914
Joined: Sat Oct 22, 2005 3:54 pm
Location: Willunga, South Australia
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2019 Strathalbyn SwapMeet and short ride...

Post by Prof » Sun Oct 20, 2019 4:15 pm

Strathalbyn swap meet today. Begins at 6.30. 5.15am and the alarm's incessant beeping wakes me out of a rather silly dream.

Crawl out of bed. Unlock workshop. My trusty steed waiting there in the dark, packed and ready to roll. Heat breakfast and get changed. Fires almost out. Damn! Go outside to get kindling to get it going again. Swallow my porridge. Vest and jacket on. Grab phone. Throw some big wood on the fire. Be nice for Rilda to wake up to. Turn down fire. Out the back door. Lock up. Wheel shovel out into the dark yard. Three squirts on the throttle. Choke on. Ignition on. Hit the starter button and after a few revolutions the big V twin fires into life. Choke down to 1/3rd position and don helmet and gloves. Slips into gear without a sound, throttle on and out we go.

Early morning air is very cold but not 'freezing'. Swing onto Edward's Road and 50 feet in front is a medium size roo sitting on the white line staring at me and not budging. Open up the throttle and skippy finally condescends to move out of the way. Three hundred yards on and two more roos hop across the road in front of me. Looks like I'll have to be extra careful this morning.

Keep the shovel at a steady 90k. My new QI lights are brilliant and give me excellent range and width. As it turns out, no more roos are interested in this humble biker and I enjoy an uneventful ride. Throttling back for a sharp left and the motor coughs a number of times. Ohoh! A problem or just the carby icing up in the cold. Icing turns out to be the case and I keep up the revs and focus on the road ahead and to my side. Modern warning signs are a real pain. So reflective they are so bright out to 100 yards that for a short time one is almost riding blind. Heaven help a rider if a roo comes across the road at that point!

Through Meadows, get stuck behind a slow moving car . Get past while the road is straight? No. Will behave myself and hope they turn off. They don't and I endure five miles of annoying slowness until I can drop a gear and roar past. Now into the curvy section of road through Paris Creek and enjoy putting the chopper with its new springer through it paces. I can speed up now as the sky is quickly lightening.

Swoop down into Strathalbyn and back off closer to the 60k speed limit and right straight through to the Swap Meet at the trotting track. Attendants know me and say G'day. Pay my fiver and pick a spot close to the entrance. Park and unpack. Put out the CA flags and brochures. Grab a shopping bag and start the familiar activity of zigzagging through the rows of stalls along the trotting track and then on the inner dog track.

Pick up a few small tools and reject a couple of way overpriced bike parts...

Old HD for sale...
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This one was for sale at Balhannah...
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More old HD parts. Wanted $650 for a set of WLA springer back legs!...
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Jason and Kevin rolled up some time after I'd finished my tour. Kevin stayed away on the grass. Doesn't like dusting his bike. Here a biker trying out the shovel. Recently had a minor stroke and waiting to get tested for return of his licence...
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Not much interest in the choppers or CA this time. A couple of members and TCS customers came up to chat. A couple of other folks admired the choppers. One well dressed lady (in her sixties I guess) asked to take a photo and Jason and I got her talking. As a nineteen year old her 16 year old cousin talked her into coming on the back of his bike. Like so many thoughtless young riders, he took her for a crazy ride and that convinced her to stay off bikes for good. Was in the days when they didn't need to wear helmets. She had no backrest and thought she'd fall off on every corner and with every bit of acceleration as they raced down the road between Mt Gambier and Pt McDonnell. He had just become a member of The Mongrels. Some of you may remember the DVD we had of their antics back in the 70's. Seems she married a bloke who rode at Rowley Park and now has a collection of classic cars and bikes.

Two morals to this story; 1. never assume an older person was not a part of the bike scene back in their youth, 2. Be really careful to make a new passenger feel at ease on their first ride... no showing off, its their moment not yours.

At one point it came in very cold by by late morning the sun was finally able to make its presence known and the day became quite pleasant. 11.30 and time to leave. I had to pick up a 19" wheel for the VTX1300 from Bob a little way out of Strath. By this time our little group consisted of Kevin, Jon, Jason, Peter, myself and a bloke who we met and whose named I did't get...
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They all liked the idea of an extra bit of cruising and we a roared out of the swap meet grounds. Kevin needed to pick up some go juice, so the rest of us pulled up and waited...
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Bob and Martha were a bit surprised by the rowdy roll up, but conversations quickly developed and we ended up spending well over a half hour... and very enjoyable it was, particularly as Bob has been around bikes and choppers since the late sixties and is very obligingly entertaining...
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My suggestion to ride back to Willunga via Nangkita and Yundi was enthusiastically accepted and the line of six bikes stretched out behind me looked pretty cool. The roads around this part of the world, unlike the Strath road are reasonably smooth and were traffic free, however, with lots of sweeping bends and lots of tight corners. It was just a case of hunker down and cruise, braking, then powering through the corners and opening up on the straights. Jon stayed close behind me the whole ride...
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We finally rolled through the main street of Willunga after having fun negotiating all the tight corners down Old Willunga Hill. In the lead I swung right up our street assuming most of the riders would drop into the Workshop and have a coffee etc, but all rode straight ahead, obviously needing to get home as it was now around 2pm.
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Well. I enjoyed the ride to and from the swap meet and the added bonus of meeting an new fellow rider and riding for a while with 5 other blokes. Home now and after a bit of lunch, this write up. Hope you enjoyed it.
Chopit'nrideit... Prof

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