Are we becoming dinosaurs?

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Yesterday I was looking through local Craigslist ads, and I set the parameters for 1956 to 1990, just to see the older bikes. I was surprised to see not one but two fully restored Norton’s, three old Triumphs, one BSA, and old BMW airhead and a number of vintage Japanese including an RD350. Before I began looking for my first old bike to restore ( nearly 20 years ago ) the first thing I looked for was a Norton. They just never came up here locally, then I looked for a Triumph, same thing.
I eventually found a BMW, then a couple years later wound up buying my old Triumph from Baxter Cycles in Iowa.
I think what I’m seeing now is a bunch of baby boomers who are aging out of riding or are no longer interested in working on these old bikes that have to be kick started. Frankly I’m not sure how much longer, these younger guys , are going to be interested in such machinery.
For guys who are in their mid 50’s now, the bikes from their teenage years are sport bikes from the 80’s.
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I suppose that when I check out, my bikes will end up scrap, no matter their condition. That is, unless I check out today or tomorrow.
Not mine, they are willed to my young friend whom I trust and is big-time into bikes. He rides an Aprilia RSV4 Factory and is an A rider in the 450 class on his RMZ 450.
 
I don't believe it will end By the way the Kawasaki 900 from that era is a future collectors bike
Pricing on these bikes is high going down to a minimum and the increasing again as for cars.

Early eighties I was offered buy at Ford mustang 6 cylinder one of the first year model for $ 800 dollars
Sure it was rusty and 6 cylinder but still something to buy.
Today .I don't know the price but would be surprised if it is under $ 5000

So the older objects Kick starters are not there anymore in the barns .They have been hauled out
Young people cannot buy them at reasonable prices So for them it can make more sense going for cheaper newer models
Cheaper to purchase and more likely finding parts at a salvage.

A worn Britt bike is also getting expensive Not long ago these could be found fairly cheap.

A rebuilt fex BMW airhead are getting closer to $ 20 000 Nothing for a young enthusiast normally.

Not having the cash and not many cheap objects of that era left $ 800 Mustangs or $ 800 Triumphs
Rebuilt is to expensive and no guarantee the quality of the rebuild Unless I know who have done it. I would be careful buying
one
Here a sub $ 2 k -- XS 650 is gone within an hour or day from the net
3.5 k and upwards can take a while

and as GLJ says every age has its role models " Chetah " had a Mustang fast back and " Riot " a Bonneville.
It talks more to us. We have been riding in and on them
But I don't think it will end at least not here.
 
Yes and no. Those of us who grew up learning to ride in the 60's and 70's are indeed aging out. The number of us still riding and wrenching these old bikes is dwindling... no question, but there are those in younger generations picking up the torch, so to speak.

Consider that there are still bikes and cars... mostly cars, from the 40's and 50's still on the road. The owners, riders and wrenchers are definitely not from that generation. The generations after them are keeping them alive. You can go back to the era of the Model A and such. They're few and far between now, but there's still a dedicated bunch looking after 'em.
The bikes we grew up with and love will get the same treatment. Their numbers will dwindle, no doubt, but they'll still be here.

This is actually pretty timely Bob. I just finished helping my neighbor Jeff load his big Beemer on the trailer so he could take it out to his hanger in Topeka for the big winter snooze.
Jeff is only a few yrs younger than me... about 65 I'd guess. The whole time we were loading it, we were discussing just this issue. We came to the conclusion that yes, our ol' bikes will still be alive and kicking long after we are gone.
50-75 yrs from now, some kid will point his '79 XS650 down the highway and wind it out through the gears... with a shit eatin' grin on his face while all the little electric contrivances dodge and weave trying to figure out what the hell that was. I only regret that I won't be there to enjoy the moment. ;)
 
Speaking of Norton’s, yet another one just popped up. Look at this ridiculous ad, guy wants $20,000 for a bike that hasn’t been ran in almost two decades, is covered in dirt, and this is the best photo of it. What’s wrong with these people? 🤨

I am convinced that people like that seller live in some kind of bubble that prevents them from putting two and two together. He thinks his 1975 Commando is "rare" because it is old....and because he looked at the Las Vegas auctions and concluded he would easily rake in the bucks. Of course, he is wrong, but will probably try to justify that the reason nobody is buying his bike at that seriously over-inflated price, is because they are all a bunch of cheap skates, that don't understand its true value and weren't really serious anyway. He knows its value and that's that :rolleyes:
 
I don't think the 60 and under age group look at older Brit bikes like we do.
Same thing happened to Model T's.

Totally not true! I just turned 55, and have been owning and riding Brit bikes, since I got my first Brit bike, a 1968 BSA A65L Lightning 650, at age 16 in 1984. I rode with other guys my age who also rode Brit bikes, and have even met guys younger than me over the years who have been into/are owners of Brit bikes. I also got my first Harley at 19, but still, the Brits just have that certain mystique, and by my mid-twenties, I had become a certified Brit bike fanatic!

Just throwing that out there!
 
Totally not true! I just turned 55, and have been owning and riding Brit bikes, since I got my first Brit bike, a 1968 BSA A65L Lightning 650, at age 16 in 1984. I rode with other guys my age who also rode Brit bikes, and have even met guys younger than me over the years who have been into/are owners of Brit bikes. I also got my first Harley at 19, but still, the Brits just have that certain mystique, and by my mid-twenties, I had become a certified Brit bike fanatic!

Just throwing that out there!
The world needs more of you! Let’s ride!
 
It’s interesting what stays relevant , and what didn’t . There are more spitfires and mustangs in the air now than 40 years ago , their original pilots and crews , long passed ..but, I digress

One thing I see that’s “broken” is the chain of knowledge. Many of us grew up turning wrenches , fixing busted stuff, cause hey? If you were young and wanted wheels , you had to work to buy a heap , then fix it
Many of us had great mentors teaching us the ropes, and honestly, automotive tech hadn’t moved that much ( now , people drive appliances)

I just don’t see that mentorship anymore. Now, I live in a rural area , and not a rich one , by choice , as I grew up this way and I wanted my daughters to be raised rural and learn self sufficiency.

I see all kinds of teens in their families garages wrenching old cars , and I gotta tell ya , it warms my heart. I make a point of stopping in to visit their dads, and normally , the dads and I are working with those kids to lend a hand, encourage or just listen to how they think it should be done(sometimes, gentle advice follows!)

I show them them the mystery of the carburetor and points . I learned from a couple of the teens doing automotive school, that these subjects are no longer taught, haven’t been for years !, one guy wants to get into restoration, so he’s a sponge about “ the old ways “

I’m not sure many kids have access to a mentor, and that’s kinda sad

My kids are into old things, thankfully , and they enjoy wrenching on our old vw bus and leaning things like “ reading the sky “ ( short for understanding weather lol)

When I’m in town with one of my old rides , at the range with my antique guns , if someone comes up , and has the gumption to ask questions , I try and give them as much time as they want , sparks turn into fires of passion only when kindled . I recall a kid , about 10, at an Italian festival in Ottawa , the city an hour away , all kinds of expensive cars and bikes , and me with my rebuilt but presentable 750 Ducati…he spend an hour at a distance looking at the bikes ….you could just tell he wanted to touch one so badly. So, i motion him over , run though the bikes controls and how they work . Bike up on its Center Stand , explain to the kid how to mount up ….

I kept the clutch pulled in for the next bit ! Had him start it , showed him the idle speed. And . He. Reved it right to the soft limiter !! It was awesome , he was the most excited kid I’ve ever seen.

His parents were beaming , lots of pics etc.

They stayed in touch now and then , the boy is now a man, a motorcycle riding instructor and has bikes of his own . Full circle
 
Totally not true! I just turned 55, and have been owning and riding Brit bikes, since I got my first Brit bike, a 1968 BSA A65L Lightning 650, at age 16 in 1984. I rode with other guys my age who also rode Brit bikes, and have even met guys younger than me over the years who have been into/are owners of Brit bikes. I also got my first Harley at 19, but still, the Brits just have that certain mystique, and by my mid-twenties, I had become a certified Brit bike fanatic!

Just throwing that out there!
Ok there's one in every crowd.:) I still think that for every 10 Brit guys that pass there will only be 1 or 2 new guys that take there place.
 
I tend to bookmark Nortons for sale near me (three state area) lol
Checked today and all the old ads were marked sold.
Someone's buying...................
 
Speaking of mentors.... :wink2:

Open the video and click the "share" button.
Click "copy".
Come back here, right click in the comment box and click paste.... then Post reply.
Enjoy.

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