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New Motorcycle (and a Capped Bust Half Dime trade!)

BikergeekBikergeek Posts: 179 ✭✭✭✭

Why am I posting about a motorcycle here on the Coin forum? Well, because @pursuitofliberty told me that a trip report was expected!

Having just reached one of those birthdays that's evenly divisible by ten, I decided that it was time to relive a bit of my youth. So I set about looking for a classic Kawasaki motorcycle. Found the right one - a 1974 Z1A 900 - that checked many of my boxes. It was in Knoxville, TN - just barely inside my "I can ride it home to Kansas City" zone. And I've got coin friends in Knoxville! After working with the seller and chatting with my coin buddies, I had a plan.

I flew down to Knoxville on Friday, arriving in the mid-afternoon. The seller picked me up at the airport and took me to see the bike. It was smaller than I remembered the 900 to be... or maybe I had just gotten a little bit, um, wider. The deal was struck and I headed down the road. However, the speedo wasn't working - so I called the guy and he invited me back up to take a look. A few connecting bolts tightened at either end of the cable, and it looked like I was golden! (Spoiler alert: no.)

I checked in at the Quality Inn and unstrapped my gear off the back seat of the bike and tossed it inside. Apparently, when there's a college football game in Tennessee, hotels fill up. This was the last place I could find a room that didn't require me to sell a kidney. And now I can confidently say, if you ever need to go to Knoxville and are considering a stay at the Quality Inn on Campbell Lakes Drive, buy a tent and locate a quiet grove to camp in instead. The best thing I can say about this place is that I didn't find bedbugs, so they got that goin' for them.

Headed out to meet "JRCS323" and "Paleofiles," who aren't members here. These are two of the pre-eminent capped bust half dime collectors in the entire galaxy, and they happen to live in the same small town! I parked the bike in 323's garage and we took a more civilized mode of conveyance to get to Chesapeake's where I could gorge on tasty seafood. At dinner, I was able to inform Paleofiles that I'm gaining on his PCGS registry set. Check these links out:
Paleofiles set. Bikergeek set. I'm convinced that we aren't competing against each other; we're merely competing against ourselves, both of us trying to improve our sets when the chance arises.

After a nice meal and conversation with the guys and their lovely wives, Paleofiles and his missus went on home and I went to talk half dimes with JRCS323. I'd recently acquired an 1836 LM-6 half dime in NGC MS64. These are tough to find in nice Mint State. But a week or so earlier, when I'd told him about this coin, he reminded me that that's one that he'd been really looking for, to upgrade his NGC 61. So, after looking at some of his other recent acquisitions, including a SUPER nice, very scarce, 1831 LM-1.1 in MS64, we got down to brass tacks. His 1836 LM-6 was also in an NGC holder, and I've found that it can be hard to predict how an N coin will cross to my preferred plastic. But he is happy without needing to cross, and I wanted to help my friend, so we struck a deal for a trade. I'll still have to cross my new MS61 LM-6, but no hurry on that as I have a decent set piece in lower grade.

My friend drove me back to the Quality (lol) Inn. My bike spent the night in his garage. The next morning, JRCS323 and his missus picked me up and we had a lovely Cracker Barrel breakfast - and then I was off! He snapped this pic before I left his home.

Epilog: I made it 3.6 miles before the speedo cable broke once and for all. Not a show-stopper, just a small thing to fix later. But I only made it 100 miles that day, instead of the planned 500, due to a rough engine that could have been caused by a number of (mostly small) things. I decided not to try to debug those things on the road, and rented a pickup truck to get the bike home. I'm not mad at the seller (who thought, as many did, that it was crazy to ride a 50-year-old machine across four states). The issue will be resolved soon, and I was going to do some upgrades and tune-ups anyway so this isn't anything that I wouldn't have touched in the first place. All in all, a pleasant trip!

New website: Groovycoins.com Capped Bust Half Dime registry set: Bikergeek CBHD LM Set

Comments

  • LukeMarshallLukeMarshall Posts: 1,881 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited October 3, 2023 10:15AM

    penny for my thoughts… (not mine I wish, found on inter webs and same year as your bike )

    Nice bike, my coworker was showing me this same one earlier today accompanied by stories of his youth.

    Have fun !

    It's all about what the people want...

  • Pnies20Pnies20 Posts: 1,959 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Hey I recognize that driveway!

    Sounds like you had quite the adventure 😂

    There are VERY FEW things I’m willing to spend extra on. One of them is a hotel.

    BHNC #248 … 103 and counting.

  • RobertScotLoverRobertScotLover Posts: 509 ✭✭✭✭

    You are a better man than I.

  • jacrispiesjacrispies Posts: 667 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited October 3, 2023 12:13PM

    Those kinds of trips with newly purchased older vehicles are so fun. For you to tie it into a coin trip as well sounds like a dream!! The few I've been on will be remembered forever. Glad you were able to make it home safely without much trouble.

    One of the last longer trips I went with my 1960 corvair, it was night and the car was barely trotting on 3/6 cylinders. I could not slow down the car or else it would turn off. Later found the point gap to be 0. Lol oopsies!

    "For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord" Romans 6:23. Young fellow suffering from Bust Half fever.

  • habaracahabaraca Posts: 1,949 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Mr. Bust Half Dime also lives in Knoxville...... If I remember correctly he also wrote a book on such.....

  • breakdownbreakdown Posts: 1,947 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I enjoyed the story and your upbeat attitude about the adventure for the sake of it.
    (By the way, I agree that that bike looks small for a 900 as I remember them from my youth).

    "Look up, old boy, and see what you get." -William Bonney.

  • OAKSTAROAKSTAR Posts: 5,452 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited October 3, 2023 2:53PM

    I don't know.

    What I do know is, a fender bender in a car is a fender bender. A fender bender on a bike, is a leg probably worse! Be careful out there!

    Disclaimer: I'm not a dealer, trader, grader, investor or professional numismatist. I'm just a hobbyist. (To protect me but mostly you! 🤣 )

  • pursuitoflibertypursuitofliberty Posts: 6,502 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Nice report Sean! Glad you made a good trip of it!!


    “We are only their care-takers,” he posed, “if we take good care of them, then centuries from now they may still be here … ”

    Todd - BHNC #242
  • BikergeekBikergeek Posts: 179 ✭✭✭✭

    @jacrispies said:

    One of the last longer trips I went with my 1960 corvair, it was night and the car was barely trotting on 3/6 cylinders. I could not slow down the car or else it would turn off. Later found the point gap to be 0. Lol oopsies!

    In the parking lot of a gas station, I pulled off the points cover just to eyeball them. Ran a piece of paper between them to see if they were gunked up, but I don't think that was the issue - and I wasn't about to take extreme measures. I'm gonna install an electronic ignition and put the old points/condenser in a box on a shelf!

    New website: Groovycoins.com Capped Bust Half Dime registry set: Bikergeek CBHD LM Set

  • jacrispiesjacrispies Posts: 667 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Bikergeek said:

    @jacrispies said:

    One of the last longer trips I went with my 1960 corvair, it was night and the car was barely trotting on 3/6 cylinders. I could not slow down the car or else it would turn off. Later found the point gap to be 0. Lol oopsies!

    In the parking lot of a gas station, I pulled off the points cover just to eyeball them. Ran a piece of paper between them to see if they were gunked up, but I don't think that was the issue - and I wasn't about to take extreme measures. I'm gonna install an electronic ignition and put the old points/condenser in a box on a shelf!

    Good idea! With fresh plugs and wires, and set carbs, the bike should run like a top!

    "For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord" Romans 6:23. Young fellow suffering from Bust Half fever.

  • Pnies20Pnies20 Posts: 1,959 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @jacrispies said:

    @Bikergeek said:

    @jacrispies said:

    One of the last longer trips I went with my 1960 corvair, it was night and the car was barely trotting on 3/6 cylinders. I could not slow down the car or else it would turn off. Later found the point gap to be 0. Lol oopsies!

    In the parking lot of a gas station, I pulled off the points cover just to eyeball them. Ran a piece of paper between them to see if they were gunked up, but I don't think that was the issue - and I wasn't about to take extreme measures. I'm gonna install an electronic ignition and put the old points/condenser in a box on a shelf!

    Good idea! With fresh plugs and wires, and set carbs, the bike should run like a top!

    Do you even have a driver license?

    BHNC #248 … 103 and counting.

  • MeltdownMeltdown Posts: 8,603 ✭✭✭✭✭

    What a fun trip despite the inconveniences. That's a nice looking bike... B)

  • jacrispiesjacrispies Posts: 667 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Pnies20 said:

    @jacrispies said:

    @Bikergeek said:

    @jacrispies said:

    One of the last longer trips I went with my 1960 corvair, it was night and the car was barely trotting on 3/6 cylinders. I could not slow down the car or else it would turn off. Later found the point gap to be 0. Lol oopsies!

    In the parking lot of a gas station, I pulled off the points cover just to eyeball them. Ran a piece of paper between them to see if they were gunked up, but I don't think that was the issue - and I wasn't about to take extreme measures. I'm gonna install an electronic ignition and put the old points/condenser in a box on a shelf!

    Good idea! With fresh plugs and wires, and set carbs, the bike should run like a top!

    Do you even have a driver license?

    I have all Class A - Class Q licenses.

    "For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord" Romans 6:23. Young fellow suffering from Bust Half fever.

  • Pnies20Pnies20 Posts: 1,959 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @jacrispies said:

    @Pnies20 said:

    @jacrispies said:

    @Bikergeek said:

    @jacrispies said:

    One of the last longer trips I went with my 1960 corvair, it was night and the car was barely trotting on 3/6 cylinders. I could not slow down the car or else it would turn off. Later found the point gap to be 0. Lol oopsies!

    In the parking lot of a gas station, I pulled off the points cover just to eyeball them. Ran a piece of paper between them to see if they were gunked up, but I don't think that was the issue - and I wasn't about to take extreme measures. I'm gonna install an electronic ignition and put the old points/condenser in a box on a shelf!

    Good idea! With fresh plugs and wires, and set carbs, the bike should run like a top!

    Do you even have a driver license?

    I have all Class A - Class Q licenses.

    😜

    BHNC #248 … 103 and counting.

  • johnny010johnny010 Posts: 1,041 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Nice coins btw. Impressive set you’ve assembled.

  • sfs2002usasfs2002usa Posts: 809 ✭✭✭

    Great Story - Those vintage bikes. If you are ever in the area of Marquette - Salinas, Kansas
    please check out the Motorcycle Museum. It is unbelievably awesome with a collection and
    history that is out of this world !

    https://ksmotorcyclemuseum.org/


  • sfs2002usasfs2002usa Posts: 809 ✭✭✭

    I Just realized that you are actually in the "near" neighborhood !

    Give the Museum your gift of a motorcycle ride visit. The area is quite nice !

  • sfs2002usasfs2002usa Posts: 809 ✭✭✭

    Oh! and before I forget - there is a great ice cream shop on Main Street.

  • BikergeekBikergeek Posts: 179 ✭✭✭✭

    @johnny010, thanks for the kind words!

    @sfs2002usa I will definitely check out the motorcycle museum! If I ride on a chilly day, I may forego the ice cream though. :-)

    New website: Groovycoins.com Capped Bust Half Dime registry set: Bikergeek CBHD LM Set

  • breakdownbreakdown Posts: 1,947 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited October 4, 2023 10:05PM

    And if you ever ride to Denver, take a slight detour off I-70 in the western end of the state to see the St Francis Motorcycle Museum:
    https://stfrancismotorcyclemuseum.org/

    "Look up, old boy, and see what you get." -William Bonney.

  • BikergeekBikergeek Posts: 179 ✭✭✭✭

    @breakdown great tip, and another cool thing to do (among the thousands!) in Colorado. Love riding there! Problem is, I gotta go thru Kansas to get there... lol

    New website: Groovycoins.com Capped Bust Half Dime registry set: Bikergeek CBHD LM Set

  • BarberianBarberian Posts: 2,879 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited October 6, 2023 4:47AM

    @Bikergeek said:
    @breakdown great tip, and another cool thing to do (among the thousands!) in Colorado. Love riding there! Problem is, I gotta go thru Kansas to get there... lol

    I like riding through Nebraska to get to Colorado.

    I checked out your friends' sets. Yowza! I call them "Little Jewels." I wish I had collected them more, but my eyes gave out. I bought an 1868 in G4 many years ago just to have a half dime and a coin with a 5-figure mintage (88,600).

    3 rim nicks away from Good
  • BustDMsBustDMs Posts: 1,557 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I also recognize that driveway. My car is currently parked in it.

    Did 323 buy breakfast? He got alligator arms today and I had to pay!!!!!

    I liberated two of his half dimes into my collection today and made him jealous on another one.

    Q: When does a collector become a numismatist?



    A: The year they spend more on their library than their coin collection.



    A numismatist is judged more on the content of their library than the content of their cabinet.
  • BikergeekBikergeek Posts: 179 ✭✭✭✭

    @BustDMs said:
    I also recognize that driveway. My car is currently parked in it.

    Unlike my motorcycle, your car will probably make it all the way home. heheh.

    Did 323 buy breakfast? He got alligator arms today and I had to pay!!!!!

    >
    He did not buy my breakfast - I didn't know that was an option! I'll have to explore that next visit!

    I liberated two of his half dimes into my collection today and made him jealous on another one.

    >
    Nice - sounds like I missed a nice half dime session.

    New website: Groovycoins.com Capped Bust Half Dime registry set: Bikergeek CBHD LM Set

  • pmh1nicpmh1nic Posts: 3,116 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Enjoyed the story. Yes, you are crazy for trying to ride an untested 50 year old motorcycle across four states. But it's a good kind of crazy and you got to talk coins with some friends and make a nice trade. The picture of the bike brought back memories of the style of bikes I rode in my younger years when my wife was still healthy enough to ride with me. Still riding (2022 HD Lowrider S) but solo due to her health issues.

    The longer I live the more convincing proofs I see of this truth, that God governs in the affairs of men. And if a sparrow cannot fall to the ground without His notice is it possible for an empire to rise without His aid? Benjamin Franklin
  • Steven59Steven59 Posts: 8,157 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Nice story. Once fixed it will be a great vintage bike.

  • SeattleSlammerSeattleSlammer Posts: 9,953 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited October 27, 2023 12:40PM

    Nice report and congrats on the Z !

    I happen to own its grandchild, the Z900RS …. ride safe buddy. 🤘🏻☮️

  • BikergeekBikergeek Posts: 179 ✭✭✭✭

    @SeattleSlammer said:
    Nice report and congrats on the Z !

    I happen to own its grandchild, the Z900RS …. ride safe buddy. 🤘🏻☮️

    Hey Seattle, I'm not sure I saw your post back in October. Here it is late January, and my '74 Z is in the c.c.c.cold garage in pieces and parts, and I haven't had the gumption to finish the project because my hands get numb. (Two space heaters out there don't do the trick when it's sub-zero as it has been for parts of the winter.) Today the sun is out and it'll actually hit 45 degrees in Kansas City and when I saw your Z900RS I got a big touch of motivation. Gorgeous bike!

    New website: Groovycoins.com Capped Bust Half Dime registry set: Bikergeek CBHD LM Set

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