Tuesday, 4 August 2015

Every Picture Tells a Story #2 - Washing Bikes, 1982.

This photograph shows a mass bike washing session at our family home in a photograph dated March 1982. The bikes are my Suzuki GT500 and my bother Norman's BMW R75 & Yamaha SR500. Missing is my MZ TS150 that I used for commuting. I would have just started riding again after a bad accident the previous year when I broke my leg that took a long time to heal.

My GT has its mirrors removed for some reason. Also the carrier has pannier loops attached. I generally only fitted them for touring. This was likely for a trip the next month I took to Ireland. Note the blocks of wood taped to the loops to prevent the panniers burning on the silencers and the cheap cycle type lock.

Norman bought the BMW to replace the SR which seems to have a plastic cover over the tank for some reason. He disputes the date saying he'd sold the SR by then, but I'm pretty sure I'm right.  ***update*** - no I'm not - it's September 1981.

The neighbours' children playing in the street will be middle aged by now - gulp.


  1. Still think it was earlier than 1982. I'd bought the bike from a friend who'd used it on holiday in Spain, so that would make it autumn. I'd just bought the bike as the first things I did were replace the cracked headlight (covered with tape), and fit a rack. I went to France on the BMW in 1982 and by that time the fairing had been painted to match. I would have done this over winter when I wasn't using the bike so much, so I think the photo is Autumn 1981 at the latest.

    The paint on the SR 500 was very thin and I'd worn it to the bare metal with my knees. I fitted a 'Tector Tank Cover', made in Lochgoilhead, they were very popular at the time.
    The SR also had a 'Furlong Chain Case', an after market fully enclosed chaincase very similar to that on the MZ 2 strokes I'd ride some years later. The pannier frames look really rusty – must be a trick of the light as I would have painted them if they had been that bad!

  2. I think you are right. I found another photo of the GT dated "Sept '81" with the pannier loops fitted & no mirrors. I think the March date was when the film was developed having been in the camera since the previous year.