Up here in Norcal we have this neat motorcycle chapter called CJMC, which is short for Classic Japanese Motorcycle Club. The internationally known club offers a variety of cruises, meets, and motorcycle shows for the vintage bike fanatic. Luckily for me, last weekend marked CJMC’s 17th annual motorcycle show/swap meet in Auburn, CA. Since Auburn is a mere 45 minutes away from where I lived, it was no biggie for me to head out there and cover the classics.
Before heading to this event, I primarily covered car events such as Formula D, road race events, and/or stance related shindigs. However, this would be my first time covering a motorcycle show. I didn’t know what to suspect, but the element of surprise was ever so present when I reached the show’s location. There were plenty of nice classics sporting around the venue.
Heading down the hill towards the show, I spotted this neat Honda Scrambler CL77. You know up until know I had no clue why these bikes were called scrambler until I finally got out the books and started to do my research. A scrambler is a bike that is an all-terrain bike whether it be street or dirt. Also note the height of the exhaust pipes as it’s raised. From my understanding, this designed prevented low level water from seeping into the exhaust.
The show portion of the event was packed with different types of categories. The show sections included bikes that were unrestored originals, custom motorcycles, restored originals, classics, vintage, race bikes, and my favorite section (besides the race bike section), cafe racers. The vintage category contained bikes from the early 50′s and 60′s and the classics revolved around the 70′s up to some of the 80′s.
Now the above bicycle has quite the interesting story especially for a Honda fanatic. Back in 1946, Soichiro Honda thought of an idea to use military surplus engines, originally used to power a No.6 wireless radio, to power bicycles. From this moment forward, this was the beginning of Mr. Honda’s legacy. This Honda Cub bicycle marked the start of a great run for Mr. Honda and his company. I was pretty thrilled to see this historical piece in person.
I shouldn’t be surprised to see cafe racers at a motorcycle show, but this was a treat. I tend to think that the Norcal cafe racer scene is a bit conservative, but seeing these cafe racers at the show proved me wrong. There were tons of nice minimalistic bikes. Better yet, some of these bikes were actually built by some of the original guys from the cafe racer scene. I could hear a couple of British accents chatting it up about the old school cafe runs.
This cafe racer was a nice clean bike. I really liked the color way and how the bump stop seat flowed well into the tank. The 89 embellished into the cowl was a cool blend as well.
At the end of the cafe section line was this Honda CB550. It was a tight fit to get this shot, but I managed to snap its front end sporting some cool clubmans.
While I was looking for my first bike, I came across some neat Yamaha SR400s and SR500s. Though they were out of my price range, I’ve always wanted them for their neat tank and frame setup. Compared to the Honda CB tanks, the Yamaha SR tanks had a nice tear drop slope. This SR I spotted fancied a very well done colorway. I like the whole mint/silver look and its minimal approach was a favorite of mine.
This bike was the only bobber I spotted under the custom category. It isn’t all out bobber style, but it was a decent build approach.
After scoping out the show, I checked out what the swap meet had to offer. There were some neat classic articles on motorcycles, old magazines and such, and this neat Schwinn Stingray! My dad mentioned this was one of the bicycles that he wanted as a kid. This bike wasn’t in tip top condition, but with the right owner, I can see the potential in what this bike has to offer.
Here’s a few more bikes from the swap meet vendors. Note the 3rd picture down and a blast from the past. Dating from the 80′s is this Suzuki RG 500. Back in the days, it was used to contend against Yamaha’s RZ 500. In its prime it was pricey for the average consumer and owning a race bike for the street was still an overkill idea for many consumers. Yet, owning crotch rockets nowadays seem like the general norm. But nevertheless, it was a beautiful bike for the road racing warrior.
Lastly, I want to leave our readers with this scuffed up and bruised race bike. Sure it doesn’t look perfect to the average consumer, but to me this bike sparks so many emotions. This bike reminds of the many racers that have graced the Isle of Man TT. This bike reminds me of the first time I started up a motorcycle and revved its engine. This bike reminds me that regardless of what bike you own, we all can agree that motorcycles are fun when ridden at their true potential. Show them off and ride them like they were meant to be ridden!