image
image
image

The story of a guy and his motorcycles.


I originally created this site to chronicle my continuing experiences with a specific motorcycle: Honda's 1983 VF1100C V65 Magna. It was a fine machine, but she has been sold. My wonderful experience with her is documented here forever.

This site is now chronicling my continuing experiences with a 2006 BMW R1200GS Adventure!

 







About the Honda:

Honda's 1983 V65 Magna hit the street like a 600-pound chrome sledgehammer. Americans had built a long-term relationship with horsepower and high style on four wheels, but a motorcycle with acres of both was news. This was more than a new model. The V65 made big muscle look cool. Thus the power cruiser was born. "The best part of the V65," according to Cycle magazine's March 1983 road test, " is a mid-range punch that would do justice to Larry Holmes."

The liquid-cooled, 1098cc, 90-degree V-4 engine delivered a staggering flow of power from 1500 rpm to its 10,000 rpm redline. But how quick was it? On October 3, 1982, Honda brought drag-strip maestro Jay "Pee-Wee" Gleason and a standard V65 to Southern California's Orange County International Raceway to find out. Gleason's 10.92 — second 1/4-mile sprint made the V65 America's fastest production street machine, inspiring ads with one powerfully simple headline: Bad News Travels Fast.

For street riders, the good news was Honda engineers made sure the bike was easy to live with as well as fast. The four-cam, 16-valve V-4 cruised through a daily commute as happily as it devoured drag strips. Around town, the V65 was surprisingly agile for its size. A durable, diaphragm-type hydraulic clutch modulated power to the shaft drive, and one-way sprag clutch kept downshifts from chirping the rear tire. Anti-dive valving in the 41mm front fork helped stabilize the chassis under braking. An overdrive top gear in the six-speed transmission kept the V-4 serene at freeway speeds. Tired of cruising your hometown? Strap on some saddlebags and the Magna was comfortable enough to cruise to some town three or four states away.

Riders expected such well-mannered versatility from Honda. The V65's magnetism came from its totally radical fusion of bad boy good looks and world-class quickness. According to Cycle's March, 1983 test, "Its horsepower translates directly into an immediate gut-wrenching rush, unmatched by any other production street machine." To anyone who ever felt it, that V65 rush boils down to one word. Unforgettable.













image
 
image