Gerry..... and the Motorbikes

I Motorbikes......

My Nickname:Gerry the Viking

How it began..........
In the early age I already sat on the tank of my father's ZUENDAPP 200 when the family made an excursion. Later with 14 or 15 years I rode this bike secretly on back roads and in the woods, when my parents were not at home.
(The bike was kept in the barn, because my father had bought a car).

When I was 15 years old my grandfather gave me the money for a GoPed, with the advice that this will have to do until I was 18. In those times, we had many small bikes with 50cc on the German market which made up to 100 Km/h. The driving license for those bikes could be acquired with 16, but the insurance-rates were very high because many accidents happened.

My real driving license for motorcycles I made at the age of 18.
From 1970-74 I learned to ride a (real) bike on a ADLER MB 250 (2-stroke) that was not very reliable and made many problems and later on a 1956 NSU-Max 250cc (acquired on a police-auction DM 350,- ).

The green police-bike was succesfully painted blue. Some weeks later the way home from a party ended in the ditch and the lamp had to be replaced. Several month later a accident which was not my fault helped me to a professional repair-job with new paint and a chrome-tank.
(Here is a photo of the repaired bike and my blond cousin.)

To the end of the year 1974 I had to sell the bike when I bought my fist car. At that time I could not afford to have a bike and a car. For several years I rode the bikes of friends and relatives, whenever I had a chance. Many thanks to my brother in law Manfred who let me ride all of his bikes including his precious Honda Goldwing.

One year before my oldest son Dominik turned 16 years old a new driving-license was introduced, that permitted bikes with 125cc at this age. This was the final trigger for me to buy a bike for my son. Of course I also wanted to use it for myself.
I decided to buy a Suzuki GN 125 because it was a good offer. My wife saw this new hobby very skeptical and refused to ride on a bike from the beginning up to today.
Needless to say, that this is not always a disadvantage.

Suzuki GN 125
Technical data: Engine 124cc, 4-stroke, SOHC, one-cylinder, aircooled,11 HP at 9600/RPM, 5 shift-gearbox Weight: 112 KG, top speed 105 Km/h

The first year on this bike was wonderful. It's quite astonishing how far you get around a that speed and no hill is to high to be climbed......something you can hardly believe when you own a powercruiser.
After my son had the driving license we had to share the bike. This proved to be more complicated then I expected, because according to the laws the topsspeed hat to be reduced to 80 Km/h, so I decided to by another (bigger) one for myself..

A lucky incident helped my acquire a Kawasaki 440 LTD for small money. I liked this bike from the spot and I loved the sound, not restricted as much as usual with newer bikes. After some minor repairs the bike was ready to be used and served us well for many years. Occasional troubles with the belt, that made funny noises could not be solved for good, but where easy to ignore. After two years I gave it to my older son, and its now used by his younger brother.

Technical data: Engine 440cc, 4-stroke,OHC, two-cylinder, air cooled 36 HP at 9000 RPM,
6 shift-gearbox, weight: 184 KG, top speed 150 Km/h.

After two years my son had "outgrown" the Suzuki and passed it on to his brother.... Since he had upgraded his driving licence and wanted my LTD 440 I had to look for something else.
Again a lucky incident helped me to a Yamaha Virago XV 1100. Before I found that bike I "tested" several other bikes among them a Kawasaki VN1500 Vulcan that proved to be too heavy and unwieldy.
Due to sufficient ground clearance and good handling the Virago XV1100 is a exception among the cruisers/choppers. The cornering abilities can not match those of a streetbike, but are good enough for fast driving, even on winding roads. The drive-shaft needs almost no care and proved to be a reliable power-transmission.

Yamaha Virago XV 1100
Technical data: Engine:1063cc, 4-stroke, V2-Cylinder,air cooled,weight: 239 KG, 62 HP bei 6000/RPM,
5 shift-gearbox (68 HP with Dynajet) Torque 85 Nm at 3000/RPM, Top speed 185 Km/h
The installation of a Dynajet Kit with K&N air filter gave some additional horsepower and helped me increase the torque.

the lovely heart of the bike.....
- The V2 -
Such sweet thunder..........

After 5 happy years with the XV1100 I felt a growing urge for more power.................................
But I could not decide either to stay in the cruiser/chopper "division" or to buy a powerful street bike.
I tested several bikes. The successor of the Virago, the Dragstar XV1100 did not convince me. The cornering abilities were - especially with floor pads - hopelessly inferior to those I was used with the Virago and in spite of the engine revision by Yamaha I could hardly perceive a increase in power.
My next favorite, the Yamaha BT1100 Bulldog combined the revised engine of the Dragstar with a street frame and offered a good handling and cornering abilities. I almost bought one, but the Yamaha made the mistake to avoid a thorough revision of the dragstar-engine. For a BT1100 with 75 HP, 1200cc and fuel injection I would not have hesitated to crack my piggy-bank. So I stayed indecisive.
Through the internet I made the acquaintance of the german "Starbikers" and went to one of their meetings.
I was impressed by the XV 1600 Wildstars and especially by the Roadstar Warrior. After I came home from the meeting I decided to make a test drive with a Warrior.

After some hints and a research in the internet I found a dealer who offered a 04 Warrior at a reasonable price. He even agreed to take my Virago for an acceptable rate. After a short drive over winding country roads my decision was made. I shed a minor tear for my Virago and bought the Warrior.

Technical data: Yamaha Roadstar Warrior XV1700
Engine: Air cooled 48 V-Twin 4-stroke, 1.670ccm, OHV, 86 HP at 4500/RPM 5-shift-gearbox, belt drive, weight: 275kg tank: 15 Liter, top speed 185 Km/h

Since 2005 I ride this Warrior and I think I will never trade her for adifferent bike. Apart from a ripped belt and some minor electrical proböes during a long drive in the rain the bike never let me down. When I still had my Virago I came into contact with a local group of "Starbikers" who rode bikes of the Yamaha Star series. After I had the Warrios I stared to search the Internet for other Warrior-Riders. I found a group in northern Germany which had already held a small meeting. We agreed to meet regularly and I helped to organize the second annual meeting at Wernigerode/Harz because this place was somewhat in the center of Germany. At this meeting already we had particpants from Switzerland and we decided to make the meetings international. The next group were Warriors from England and then from Hungary, Poland and other countries. To make it easier for our Warriors from abroad we decided to switch locations every year.
At our website are pictures and reports form the meetings.

As you can read above, my first real bike was an NSU Max 250cc that I had to sell in 1974 when I bought my first car. I always regretted that for various reasons and out of a sentimental feeling I decided to buy one again sometimes. With the help of a friend I managed to buy one last year at a reasonable price and in acceptable conditon.
The first Kilometers with that "Oldtimer" were quite diffent from what I was used to. Even starting the bike with a kickstarter was not easy and required some experience. There were also some minor repairs to make but riding that old bike is fun.

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