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Bike history

  1. Yamaha XT500 (loaned)
  2. Something vague
  3. 1992 Moto Guzzi California III IE
  4. 1995 Triumph Daytona 900
  5. 1999 KTM 640 Duke II
  6. 2003 KTM 660 SMC

Yamaha XT500

I started of on a classic bike, which I could loan of a friend of my sister.
In hindsight it started pretty good. At that time I was more into the flashy kind of motorbikes, little did I know.
I got my license so I could rent a bike once or twice during holidays but that changed pretty quick. I rode it during wintertime, had the occasionally off's on icy bridges.

1992 Moto Guzzi California III IE

After some time being fashionable I wanted something with more character. Also size-wise this bike was a better match. I loved the fact you could ride forever into nowhere. Made some nice trips to England, Spain, Denmark, Czechoslovakia (in communist time and forgot my passport... and still I got in/out).
This was also my first bike I got on a dyno... it produced a whopping 50hp, not bad for a FI 1100cc twin cylinder ;)
When I got the bike a month, and rode about 6000km through places like Austria, it threw me off when riding in a straight line, doing 150km/h on the highway. It got into a speed-wobble and violently threw me off... hardly any damage to me (in jeans mind you) , the bike was nearly totalled.
I got a new one but I never was totally at ease when riding 5000rpm's ... the trust was gone.
I was also obsessed with another riding style... I wanted pegs, no footboards... bended knees instead of stretched legs, a more active riding position on the bike.
I test-rode a Moto Guzzi 1100 Daytona, a brand new drop dead gorgiuos bike at that time, but also on that bike I was not at ease when reaching the rpms that had bad associations, the same vibrations and guzziness...  so no more Guzzi's for me.
My Guzzi dealer was also a Triumph dealer, so I also took a test ride on a ....

1995 Triumph Daytona 900

... and I was sold.
So stable... doing 200 without a scare in my body... that was a big relieve after the Guzzi.
This bike felt really good but it required a very different riding style.
I was going through the rear brake-pads in no time... a result of the Guzzi combined rear-front brake, I used the footbrake a lot. That became less very soon.
Being online at that time and showing of my Triumph on a website, I met a few guys from Amsterdam who would be later known as DemolitionMan and KTMax. Monomaniacs to be but riding Triumph at that time.
I had already got rid of my chicken lines on a circuit but they lifted my riding style to a new level. Following them, thinking that if their Triumph can go so fast through corners mine could too, I was soon scrapping pegs, sliders and even the exhaust over the tarmac.
So it was pimping time....
The front forks got adjusted by Technoflex and the rear shock replaced by a fully adjustable Technoflex rear shock. It lifted the bike a lot so no more fear of touching the ground with solid bike parts.
The exhaust was replaced with a BOS 3-1 system... great roar and saved many MANY kilo's!
The airbox was removed and replaced with 3 K&N airfilters.
Front brakediscs where made floating, brakelines replaced with steal ones.
Wheels replaced by Dymag Magnesium wheels. Looked great, saved a lot of weight but it also needed al lot of adjusting to... maybe it was too much.
I also transformed the front making it look a bit likt the 'new' T509 Speed Triple. I had stripped the fairing before because I really liked the naked look. And finished it off with a new colour.

(to be continued)

Last modified: 24-10-2009