I ran across some pictures I took of Mika's Santa Fe NM shop with a couple of his bikes out front. These pictures are from my 1987 trip out to Santa Fe. It looks like he had added some tank graphics over the years by the looks of the 2004 photo my Ex took in my previous post. I know I have a few more pictures from inside the shop.
As a kid growing up in central Jersey there was one event every summer that was biker heaven. The Iselin Carnival. It was an old time church carnival that attracted bikers from all over the area. These were not the watered down "HOG" members that you see EVERY WHERE today. These were real fuckin' bikers. There were fights, burnouts in the street, wheel stands that go horribly wrong, intimidation, harassment, drunks, the best friggin' ribs I ever ate, everything that made a summer event pleasurable. The above picture was taken by some body's girl (can't remember who) in the early 80s at the Iselin Carnival. Unfortunately you can't see the hundreds of bikes lining this side of the street. As night falls both sides of the street and around the block became filled with bikes. Handle bar to handle bar. The cops would deter girls from walking down the street after dark. My girlfriend at the time (now ex wife) was told by a cop "you don't want to walk down there, they're bad people". Shit man , those were the days! I could get off on a tangent about today's Harley "biker"world but I'll save it... As is the way of all great things the Carnival is gone. They slowly (at first) made changes that eventually killed the thing. They got rid of the Wrestling Bear in the late 70's, fenced in the beer tent and began to impose parking restrictions in the 80's. The police harassment stepped up big time (I had my 52 trike impounded and hauled away on a flatbed). But in it's day this thing was one hell of a good time!
Back in about 82 or 83 I was out in Santa Fe MN and met a guy named Mika he was working out of his house on bikes. We shot the shit about bikes and I went back to the east coast. In 87 I was in Santa Fe for my Honeymoon and thought I would look him up. Driving down a main drag I saw this 45 flathead (less engine) up as a sign. It was Mika's new location. I went in and reintroduced myself. I asked him about the chassis sign and he told me a sign maker wanted $1500 for a sign that size. He said for about $300 worth of parts he put the bike up there! Well that was about 23 years ago and I recall the standard price for a 45 springer fork was $150 and the same $150 would get you a frame...aaahhh those were good times... I just didn't know it. Here's the irony. My now Ex Wife took this picture for me in 2004 when she was in Sante Fe on her (2nd) honeymoon...
Coming up June 12,13&14 is the Rhinebeck NY AMCA Swap Meet. This is not the normal AMCA Antique Motorcycle meet. It has a whole bunch more going on as you can see from the flier. This meet promotes Choppers & Bob Jobs and all kinds of "Period Modified" bikes along with the original antique bikes. There are also hot rods, tractors, machinery, etc. Along with all the diversity there are a bunch of rules imposed by the fairgrounds (mostly for the vendors) but it's worth it! And what the heck they put my old crusty Blue "Dirty Nine" EL on the flier... can't be all bad. I have been going for the past few years since before it became a National AMCA meet it's always a great time.
This Indian 4 has to be one of the coolest Jack Pine bikes I have ever seen. I had the privilege to see it in Oley PA a few years ago when it was first brought out of it's decades long resting place. To my surprise (well maybe not really) I saw it again at Dale Walksler's Wheels through Time Museum last year. The hand made "one off" stuff on this bike is unreal! From the engine powered winch to the optional sidecar wheel drive. These pictures are not the best but you get the idea.
Here's some pictures of my buddy Vic. A National Champion Hillclimber in the late 50's and early 60's. A couple of pictures from back in his Climbing Days and one recent one of him on my Hillclimber (raced by Larry Franz) in the back of my van. I still see Vic quite often at a "biker bar" in PA. He's either riding an old WL or driving the 57 Chevy he's had since about 1960!
This Indian belonged to Herm from Herm's Leather Toggs in Easton PA. It was out and running around the Oley PA meet this year thanks to Dale Walksler from WTT museum. I saw an old article and picture from 1966 on the Nostalgia On Wheels Blog with a picture of Herm and the bike.
I'm not sure if Dr. Sprocket reads my Blog but if you do the friend I referrred to was Dale.
This 45 in flathead engine was salvaged from North Africa years ago. It is a factory "Cut Away" engine used to train GI mechanics during WW II in North Africa. This motor was actually in an entire "Cut Away" training motorcycle that was taken apart and parted out. I would have loved to have had the whole bike.