Sunday, August 31, 2008

The AMOCAT boys are at it again

85 mph in this is like 130 in a modern car. If you took it up to 100 you could fly around the country. Granted, you wouldn't get to choose where you were going, but you could fly there.

It's Sunday market day

How you doin?

They taste good but stain everything.

H8ful thing

The absolute scurge of my Panhead from days gone by. When I bought the bike the owner had this God-Awful Dell Orto carburetor on it. I decided to work with what I had, read up on the thing, rebuilt it, and put it back into service.

It sucked.

I rebuilt this carburetor three times, changed every conceivable thing I could in it, talked with all of the smart people, and I still couldn't get the bike to run properly with it. H8.

Friday, August 29, 2008

Monkey stylee

Thursday, August 28, 2008

New issue of R&K arrived today

Pretty good issue that can be bought here. I did an OK story on Billetproof NW, a show they put on for the first time up here in Washington a few months back. The show originated in Southern California as a back-lash to the high dollar, trailer queen shows of the 90's.

I'm not really one for car shows. It's more fun to see one old car at the grocery store or out in front of a bar. That said, I was grateful for the opportunity to put a little something together for the magazine that shows what the Pacific Northwest folks are up to.

Pusher man

Pusher rubbers for an old front engine digger. Because the cars didn't have radiators they'd push them to the start line so they wouldn't overheat. Then they'd light em' up, let em' go, and the push vehicle would meet the car at the other end of the track to push it back to the pits. These rubber thingers are what the push vehicle (a wagon or pickup) would push against.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Pink skies at night, sailors delight

Pink skies in the morning, sailors take warning. It was night. The following day was nice.

Two great things that go great together

Expensive chocolate and cheap beer. Rainier is an acquired taste. It's strong like bull and has a price point of $5 for a six'er of tall boys. One might think the stuff was marketed to vagrants, deviants, and the like. I say no.

Michael Cluizel chocolate on the other hand is equally serious. The higher cocoa content bars in their line-up are gnarly. A bar of the stuff costs the same amount as said six'er of the rain dog, but it's worth it.

I love living in the city

Danko Jones loves living in the city too.

The Fun Loving Criminals love living in the city.

And of course FEAR loves living in the city.

One from the Panama Red days

Good Luck Gary shot this a couple summers back. I need to find a place in my house to hang the tank.

Monday, August 25, 2008



Sunday, August 24, 2008

The Path to Glory is Strewn with Discarded Parts

These are bars that Jake and I did. I took an eared springer top clamp, turned down the ears to the size of the inside of the cut up handlebars, stuck the bars over the ears, and Jake TIG'd it all up.

I like having one part that does the job of three. That said, I went a different direction and these didn't end up on the bike.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

The Hat n' Boots

This picture is nuts. The "Premium Tex", Texaco gas station was better known as the Hat n' Boots. It opened in 1954 in Seattle's Georgetown neighborhood. The hat was where you paid for your gas, and the boots were the restrooms.

Here's a shot of the station shortly after it opened.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Gone surfin'

A line of female tires waiting to be married

The male tires wear black.

Thursday, August 21, 2008


Rick Clayton. 1987. Deep.

My little buddy Gracie's handy work

Gracie is quite the artists with Microsoft Paint.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008


Not sure who took it or who is driving, but it's quite the picture.


The guy doesn't get the credit he deserves. He inspired kids and adults alike to get off their asses and make things. He inspired them to bite off more than they could chew and learn to do things they never dreamnt possible. He showed that life sucks sometimes and it isn't all a bed of hippied out, it'll-all-be-OK roses.

Don't forget that he grew a tiny little business into a multi-million dollar pocket padding machine that's allowed him to live the life so many of us dream of too. Then there's the wife. Who would have thought some guy who messes around with motorcycles and cars could have a beautiful, smart, and succesful wife? Me, I thought that. I have one.

Thanks Jesse. Photo by Adam Wright.

Maximum battery destroyer

The dude vacuums the power out of cell phones. It's weird. Half way into a story, beep, battery gone, done. Could have half or 3/4 power at start of call, doesn't matter. Every time. Awful good picture by Maurice I think.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Dave and the girls

Dave is one hell of a nice guy.

Corie and her Long Island friend having fun.

Big guy got a new toy

This may not have been a good idea, but I think it rules.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Berried alive

Late summer/early fall is my favorite time of year in Seattle. You can go to any number of Sunday Farmer's Markets and pick up all sorts of good fresh stuff. The blueberries are great right now, and my favorite, blackberries are just around the corner.

Tom Waits

He can be the guy above and he can be the guy below and he can be a bunch of other ones too.

Just an amazing musician.

Upside down Hemi

Sunday, August 17, 2008


These are some handshift tanks I'm selling. They were painted in the 70's and never made it onto the project bike I got them with. $420 shipped to your door.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

The push-back brake

Logan does great push-back brake sliders down
the sidewalk. Man, those were the days.

Geared up for the weekend

No big events, no commitments, no
social engagements...

Friday, August 15, 2008

Jason's Truck

Real nice one I'm working up a story on for Rod & Kulture. It should be a pretty good layout because this is in it too-

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Marshall's 36

A little something my buddy Marshall cooked up a couple years back. Massively custom 36' Ford roadster that started life as a five window coupe. Lots of work, lots of hours. Stick this in your Cole Foster and smoke it.

Just kidding. I have the utmost respect for Cole and his art. Incredibly talented guy.

Girl beer

Cut out the drinking for a while and switched over to this garbage on the re-up. It tastes sort of OK but you can drink about 19 of them in a sitting, so I'm not sure a lot is being accomplished here. Back to 'The Green Death' I think.

The Box

When my grandfather was a kid, a box was fun. When my dad was a kid, a box was still fun. Me, box, you guessed it- fun. The cycle continues with the L kids, and it will continue with their kids. Simplicity is king. And if you look real hard you'll see a set of Mustang scooter tanks over on the stand there. Motorcycle parts make for lovely decorations.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Neat stuff

My buddies Steve and Josh have hoards of this stuff at their shop, AMOCAT. You pick up something interesting, and you find something interesting underneath it.


Thanks to Laura, Leah, and Logan

In the post about our Portland ride below I neglected to mention my team and the fact that they were very understanding of our little adventure. I truly appreciate it. I'm really great at forgetting things and I need to work on it, but I do have excellent hygiene. That's got to be worth something, right?

12 Spokes

I'd like to set a bike up with a 15/18 12 spoke magnesium combo. at some point. They're pretty wheels but are a real bear if you're trying to keep them polished. Apparently the ones for Anglia spindles have enough meat in the bearing area to machine them for discs. That'd be cool.

Monday, August 11, 2008

I can't explain, you won't understand

I can't explain, I don't understand.

Seattle to Portland the hard way

Jake and I rode down to Portland this past weekend. We decided to just see if we could get sick of riding and go say hi to Max and Jasin, who were up visiting. **Not sure who shot the pic. below, but it's nice. M on left, J on right. Maybe Pommier?**

We headed south from Seattle for 1.5 hours, cut due west for another couple to the coast, and caught 101. The first hour of the ride was dry. The rest was wet. Wet clothes aren't that bad. Wet shoes are bad. The wind dries everything but your shoes.

We stopped a lot for gas, as we both have small tanks. We had burgers with a lot of onions on them.

The ride across the Columbia river bridge was amazing. Epic. Huge expanse of water, huge bridge, huge wind, huge rain. That rain hurt bad, but It helped me find my "special place." When things are tough, you here people say "go to your special place inside your head." I found mine on that bridge.

Bare down. Go fast. Don't think.

An hour outside of Portland the bike was unhappy. Jake's bike was fine. Jake's bike is always fine. Vibration had snapped what was left of my rear exhaust spiggot and the bike was sorely limping along. The plug fouled, I'd used up my last set, and the only thing I could think to do was get up to speed and hope the plug burned clean. I pulled second gear for a few minutes with that rear plug popping to life a little here and a little there. I wasn't ready for what was coming, and when that plug came back to life it was violent. Being right in the middle of the power band of second gear, lots of torque hit hard. The rear tire broke loose and the bike went sideways. I'm glad those roads were wet and slippery, because a dry patch and traction would have killed me.

The final hour of the ride into Portland was tough. The bike still wasn't that happy and only wanted to run wide open. No exhaust backpressure does bad things to plugs. We figured out where we were going, upset some Ben & Jerry's patrons, and got stuck waiting for the longest, slowest moving train I've ever seen. We made it to the hotel, got one of the last three available rooms from a desk guy who quickly stashed his gallon jug of Vodka upon our arrival, ate and drank, and slept. With the normal company I keep the drinking would have continued, but Jake keeps me grounded like that. Somebody needs to, I wish it could be me.

We slept in the next day and then made a run to the parts store for bulbs, plugs, and hose clamps to secure my waggling pipe. I'm glad I wasn't hung over; I wouldn't have dealt with the young kids trying to be condescending if I would have been. Kill em' with kindness, they never know how to take that one.

Lunch with Max and Jasin was good. It took a long time to get our Chorrizo, but it gave us some time to talk and drink coffee. I think a lot of Max, that's common knowledge- what surprised me though was how nice and friendly Jasin was. What a neat guy. No ego, no cool guy act, no fear of smiling and joking, nothing. And man, it was just hilarious to see this big, gnarly biker with full beard in effect come rolling out of that restaurant with a little tea cup with flowers on it and his pinkey out. It was beautiful.

We hit the road after breakfast, rode hard up I5 until we hit traffic, and just rolled with it, but not before an intervention.

I'm impatient and dangerous on a motorcycle. If the bike fits through a hole, I go through the hole. If there's stop and go traffic and the break down lane is open, I ride in the break down lane. I'll ride in it for an hour. I'll always be 16 on a motorcycle because it's the ultimate toy to me. Always has been. Burn outs, wheelies, and repetitive hole shots in traffic are just a way to pass the time. It's all I know.

I'm 75 years old in a car. It's a way to get from point a to point b.

The one thing I don't do is drive for a living. Jake does. If I get a ticket I pay it and my insurance goes up. If I get ten I take the bus or ride or drive without a license. I can still get to work. The livelihood of Jake's family depends on him driving, so I appreciated his stepping up and telling me that. Honesty and frankness are two of the most important ingredients of friendships. I also suspect that Jake may be just a bit more cautious and responsible than me. I need someone like that around. I hope the guy gets something from me too.

Home. Things to fix. Fun.

Stuff that broke on the Pan

1. Rear exhaust spiggot- It was all cracked up before we took off, but it's completely gone now. Internal combustion things like smooth exhaust flow and only run wide open without it. Time to pull the head.

2. Plate/light bracket- Don't quench metal after you weld it, it'll get brittle. Jake's welds were great, the bracket snapped right in the middle of a piece of flat bar.

3. Hand shift lever- Those little bolts sure do back out and snap easy, even with Red Loctite. I'm drilling and tapping to a larger size.

Things I learned

1. Mechanical brakes suck. They just do. They look real neat but they suck.

2. Jasin Phares is really nice and that Generator Shovel he did is amazing. Just amazing. Such a smart chopper that stops on a dime, goes like hell, and looks great. I'd never bite on it, but it changed my whole outlook on this stuff. I guess it's what you'd call "an important bike."

3. Max and Jasin's bikes are much cooler in person than in pictures, and they've got this shit figured out. 600 miles up the coast and nothing broke or fell off on either one. It'll probably be the same story for them on the way home. I hope so. The Oakland boys rule.

4. When planning your ride, plan an extra 8 hours in for weather, fixing things, closed bridges, etc. Your wife will appreciate it.

5. The next bike I put together after finishing the 64 will be a road bike, not a stylized historical representation of blah, blah, blah. Big stroker, flowed heads, highway geared or close ratio 6 speed, disc brakes, reworked bob tanks, magneto, super E, no switches, Nyloc or drilled and safety wired everything, and as few welds as possible. 100 miles between gas stops or bust.

6. Jake is cool, his wife is cool, and his kids are cool. A special "I'm sorry" to his wife for keeping him away longer than we'd intended.

Sorry I didn't take any pictures, but this ride wasn't really about that for me. I just wanted an adventure. We got it.

Friday, August 8, 2008

The video is lame...

The song on the other hand...poetry. Go drink a bottle of Thunderbird now, you'll be a better person for it and will get into heaven.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Complete tweaker picture

Every time I get in a 30's car with these I trip out on them. Complete perfection in design. So much function from so little engineering.


Zombie, owner of Rod & Kulture Magazine and really fun grass roots type of guy. He may not be super famous like Oprah, but he can party way harder than she can. Other dude is a nobody, but can shoot lazer beam tracers out of his hair so gets to be in the picture.

Far out Chuck

Hey, it's 'Far Out Chuck!' In addition to his little 45 here he has a Moto Guzzi, a Ducati, two other 45's, and an original Denver's long bike with a gold plated Pan motor.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Microsoft doesn't love fitting

"Hey, somebody get me a beer on the way back!"

Sister of 'The Destroyer' and a completely amazing kid. We had a great pre-bedtime dollhouse session last night. It's the little things...take your happiness where you can get it.