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
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.