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Thread: FZ1S In OZ

  1. #1
    Methanol (OP)
    Junior Member Methanol's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2018
    Central Coast NSW Australia

    Default FZ1S In OZ

    G'day riders

    Didn't find the intro page at first, have now so I'll say hello to everyone and share a bit of background.

    My first ride was at 5 years old on a paddock bike. A 1950s British something (Excelsior?) step thru. Chasing the older cousins around the paddock and hoping to get a ride when one fell off. No such thing as minibikes then, though my dad and uncle built our own in the early 70s. I think the old Excelsior supplied the donor motor, wheels & forks for our home built minibike.
    First bike at 10 years old, that was all mine, was a BSA Bantam custom build trials bike. The bike had been ridden by previous owner to claim the Australian 1961 Australian Trials tittle. Should have kept it, as it belongs in a museum.

    Grew up in a racing family (3rd generation back to the 1930s) with lots of very early memories of race meetings and the smell of castor oil and methanol. Lots of family friends were racers, bike shop owners or involved in the motor industry.
    One of the extended family clan was a successful World Grand Prix racer in the 50s & 60s (maybe my grandfather's 2nd cousin).

    The family bike stable was often fluid as we bought and sold bikes regularly, so there was always a choice of bikes to ride. This is back when bikes were still left and right foot shifts with up or down shift patterns.
    Never had the opportunity to ride a hand shifter or a speedway bike and didn't like trikes, but outfits (sidecars) were interesting.

    I didn't start racing till I was about 22 years old - too busy tearing around the Aussie continent on a Honda sports bike seeing the sights and doing the things young blokes did in the 1970s. Back then, there was no junior racing.
    Started racing MX, Dirt Track, a few Enduros and dabbling in Trials. MX was my great passion. Never chased sponsorship or got fully committed - too busy working, night college and looking to buy an investment property.
    Mostly rode club days and invite meetings, was an office holder of the old family race club, plus also a delegate director of a consortium of race clubs the owned and operated a Dirt Track racing complex that also promoted national and international race meetings. A great opportunity to put into practice some of my management skills I had studied and to meet lots of interesting people committed to promoting motorcycle racing.

    Had to give away racing mid 1980s after a couple of my race bikes were stolen, just before getting married to the most wonderful girl in the known world. With home loan repayments and getting started, there just was not enough spare cash to cover racing and all our other pursuits.
    Then two years later I voluntarily stopped road riding. Probably my subconscious kicking in and realizing I had been riding excessively hard and would be either locked up or smashed up.
    Rugby Union helped fill the adrenaline vacuum - I started late at 25 years old. Rugby Union and motorcycle racing are perfect bookend sports. Play on Saturday and race on Sunday. I later combined the two for about five years.
    Now I think about it, I did mange to often combine three competitive sports all at ounce over the years.

    Jumping forward to the mid 1990s and with two young kids in the family, that had got to know their father, I pulled a mothballed MXer out, and went back racing in VMX on a pre 75 bike with my dad, but still no meaningful road riding then. Fairly quickly we collected a few more bikes and had fun times riding lots of meetings in VMX and Dirt Track.
    Then by the late 1990s my new shift work commitments cut me off from being able to race consistently, so I retired from racing again. I also realized that for all the time and work involved, there wasn't much saddle time achieved. The amount of time needed to keep a stable of bikes prepped, burnt a lot of midnight and beyond oil. Just to switch bikes over from MX to Dirt Track, most of them needed wheel and gearing changes and then there was servicing and just keeping post classic bikes in competitive riding condition. If the part wasn't available it had to be fabricated.
    How I missed those old bachelor days, of weekends away with the mates and riding our dirt bikes all day long in the mountain forests.

    Moving forward again, I finally found the bike for long outback reliable dirt riding, a DR650 Suzuki with the added bonus of a tyre change it could double as a usable twisty back-roads ride to the Phillip Island for MotoGP.
    The DR did need lots of upgrades to get it to level that I wanted, but there was no chance I was going to ride it half way around Australia next year with all the riding mates on our planned trip to Darwin.

    Reading online bike sites and I saw a write-up of the FZ1 and new it was the bike. Based on a R1 motor and not overly endowed with mind numbing rider gizmos, I was sold.
    Searched for awhile and found the package that I was after in Melbourne at a dealer. Full Givi luggage, Yoshi slip-on, taller screen, RAD guard, after market seat, one owner and well looked after with no doubtful mods. Not sure if the NG front brake discs are OEM or fitted by original owner. Did a bit of searching about NG discs and discovered they do supply OEM to some bike manufacturers.
    Some heated hand grips and maybe an ECU remap and it its ready for a big lap.
    Still waiting to get some serious distance under its wheels before riding to the MotoGP in October. Planning to do an all day ride next week so I can get some fuel economy data.

    FZ1S In OZ-lxnduba.png
    Last edited by Methanol; 09-04-2018 at 03:27 PM.

  2. #2
    Threadhead Dicko's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Adelaide - Sth Australia


    Welcome aboard from a fellow Aussie!

    You have chosen a great bike for touring. you can also drop the luggage in the shed and have some fun on the weekends in the twisties as well!

    Interesting background. Did you ever get a sidecar? I have one I use to pick my daughter up from school in. She's too young to legally ride pillion, was desperate to get on a bike, so I bought a sidecar and spent a weekend with a friend installing it on a Royal Enfield classic 500. She's the coolest kid in school when I do pickup.

    I'll be at the Island for MotoGP again this year, but will be driving over from Adelaide, We did the ride a few years ago and destroyed a set of tires on the long straight sections. The Great Ocean Road was OK, but far too many tourist vans driving well beow the limit to have a lot of fun.

    Enjoy the FZ and keep us up to date on your round Aussie trip.
    Brembo 16mm Radial MC, ASV short Levers, Brembo GP4-RX calipers, Hell braided lines, R1 Fender, Ohlins FGRT 206 forks, Ohlins shock (tuned - Racebike Services), Marchesini rims, Vortex 48t sprocket, Arrow Headers - Micron GP slipon, tailtidy, Rizoma (risers, conical bars, Lux grips, bar ends, 744 mirrors, fluid reservoir, Rev rearsets/B Pro pegs), Speedo healer, BMC filter, AIS Block off, PCV (tuned - Neville Lush Racing), Pirelli DR III, Ivan's ECU, GF-Design LED Blinkers, DID gold chain

  3. #3
    Methanol (OP)
    Junior Member Methanol's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2018
    Central Coast NSW Australia


    Thanks again Dicko

    The Givi luggage is quick and easy to take off. Added bonus was the inner soft bags that came with it. I had already started looking to buy some before the bike was frighted up from Melbourne as the bike dealer had said there was none in the luggage.
    When the bike arrived I opened the top box first and surprise. It had an inner soft bag and same for panniers.
    Watching a couple of mates quickly slip out their inner bags, after fulls days of road riding, while I was mucking around undoing soft panniers, Ventura and dry bag had quickly sold me on the benefits.

    The other registered bike.
    FZ1S In OZ-pzprisb.jpg

    And in dirt touring trim.
    FZ1S In OZ-dyowisd.jpg

    The outfit I rode, was back in the early 1970s before I had a license. Dad had bought a custom built Dirt Track outfit and was probably thinking of racing it, when I was old enough to monkey.
    We were lucky to have a neighbor across the street with four vacant quarter acre blocks. This was in the middle of Sydney at Merrylands, where I grew up. The old guy that owned the land was a bit of a recluse, but we got on OK, so I had my own private riding area across the street.
    The outfit had a Honda Dream motor and rode well. Dad and I would take turns riding it in the in paddocks. Dad rode mostly and I fell off mostly, while trying to hang on and swing as the monkey.
    Had lots of fun riding the outfit on my own solo, and practicing to keep the sidecar pointing skywards for as long as possible on left turns, then marveling at how much I could slide it on right turns.

    Some of my best bike memories were of family dirt ride days. We would load up dads VW kombi ute with lots of bikes and drive 10kms to Lansdown, where there was a lot of vacant crown land with all sorts tracks This was back in the liberal days, before things started getting out of hand from inexperienced new riders getting injured or just being nuisances.
    I would have my BSA Bantam to ride, then could come in and swap over to other bikes. Riding a Matchless 500 scrambler at 12 years old was awesome and I had the time of my life, till I stalled it and couldn't kick it over.

    This year's trip to Phillip Island will be a bit quite, with only four riders committed so far. The big challenge laterly, after riding to the Island for the last 10 years, is trying to find new interesting roads to incorporate into the map.

    I understand your pain Dicko about ruining good tyres on uninteresting open roads. Two trips to Birdsville demonstrated how to demolish dirt tyres on the long straight bitumen sections. A set of good FZ tyres are about double the cost of a set of road knobbies for my DR.
    Two years ago we road to Phillip Island on a dirt trip, just for something different.

    We have a planning meeting in two weeks for the Darwin ride and there are eleven riders interested.
    Last edited by Methanol; 09-04-2018 at 04:52 PM. Reason: Image attachment



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