Tuesday 31 March 2015

Cop Magnet

"Daddy why is that man pushing that gold motorbike?" I'm taking the kids swimming in the car, 500 yards away, obliquely to my left, on the top edge of the park there is a man sweating it out in the daffodils. "Huh?!" It does look 'interesting' so I do a quick detour to cut him off before he escapes the undergrowth.
It's a 1956 US import Thunderbird forced through a funk mangle. Alvin has just assembled it and was pushing to the local garage to get an MOT so he can get it registered with a UK plate (then it won't need another MOT - or road tax, as its of such a venerable age. And no it doesn't legally need lights either). BP

Monday 30 March 2015

Sideburn Lists

Loved this list of favourites from one of our mates... Feel free to join in with your own Sideburn-related lists. Email them to dirt @ sideburnmagazine.com

Sideburn is a bit moreish in an addictive sort of way, it costs about £20 a kilo from official outlets, but has a street value of a whole lot more... 

I mean come on, which other publication`s front cover would have a guy riding around a backyard swimming pool at his Wigan home on a Honda Dax, and then two issues later the front cover has possibly the most famous motorcycle rider ever riding his own backyard dirt track in Italy?

Sideburn issue 4 is the copy I pick up and re read the most often.

Mule Motorcycles are the builders whose adverts leave me feeling the most envious.

The trophy queen replies (if on my coolness podium) would be 
1st ...John Hateley (issue 4) 
2nd.. Eddie Mulder (issue 7) 
3rd... Skip Aksland (issue 11) 

The bikes (in each issue) I'd most like to own are:

Issue 1 Holy Cow.. Bonneville Performance 
Issue 2 TZ 750... Kenny Roberts 
Issue 3 Tangerine Dream... Triumph Tracker 
Issue 4 The Phantom EG... 750 Norton 
Issue 5 Smokin Seagul... YZ 450 Issue 6 Project FT 500.... Sideburn Honda 
Issue 7 The Outlaw ... Red Line framed Triumph 
Issue 8 The Reverend.... Red Max Norton 
Issue 9 Luyckx... Belgian old school racer 
Issue 10 Pull your finger out.. Sideburn Royal Enfield and  Fashion Victimisation .. 1940 Indian sport scout 
Issue 11 DT TM Italian Tracker.... Zaeta 
Issue 12 Grasshopper..... 650 Bonneville 
Issue 13 The Swindler.... Red Max Norton 
Issue 14 8 Valve Racer... 1924 Harley Davidson 
Issue 15 Americana... 1956 Gilera 300 
Issue 16 Petardo..... El Solitario Ducati  
Issue 17 RSD Tracker..... KTM 690 
Issue 18 Pikes Peak GSXR and    Harley Ice Racer.... Benderwerks 
Issue 19 Ronin 47... 1125 Buell 
Issue 20 Trackmaster Titan..... Suzuki 500 

Keep up the superb work Sideburn Team...
Col, Scarborough, England

Sunday 29 March 2015

Highland UPDATED

What ever happened to the Highland flat tracker? Did any complete bikes make it to the competition circuit? The American owned company, born from the original Swedish brand in 1997, now only makes engines rather than whole bikes. BP

From Jan-Willem and Tom of the Dutch Brothers...

Tom did some research on this and more know more details and accuracies 

I spoke to the owner at the Intermot or EICMA during the period the XR1200 was launched (2009?) This prototype was build by Dale Lineaweaver, the same person who build Kenny Noyes formula USA-winning Husaberg. 

That's most likely the connection for this project. 

Highland modified the bike, put it on 18" (streetlegal) tires and made some ugly bodywork on it.

At some point the found an American investor and made big plans. They built a new factory in america and shortly after all key people crashed in a little air plane.

Saturday 28 March 2015


I first contacted Raid71 for the book I wrote and collated called Motorcycle Graphics.  Lenny Schuurmans brought me to his attention.
Raid71's work is clever and original and Sideburn commissioned him to create a Mad Max illustration (above) to accompany an essay by film director Alex Cox for Sideburn 17.
We wanted a new take on Dirt Quake posters for this year's event, our fourth UK DQ, and Raid71 was top of the list. This post is just to share some of the other work he's produced. Hope you like it. G

Friday 27 March 2015

Durt Gurl Shirt

New T-shirt on the loose!
  • Front and rear print designed by Australian legend, Jeff Raglus. 
  • Pink print on a charcoal shirt. 
  • £18 plus post.
  • S-XL plus lady cut medium. 
These are modern/European not hefty US sizes so check the chart before ordering.

Get yours at the Sideburn webshop.

Thursday 26 March 2015

Coste Contemplation

Sideburn first met Dimitri when Ben, Steve Redmax and I went over to Paris to visit Ruby Helmets, not long after they'd just launched, and attend a local bike club meet (that turned out to be crap, but we became good friends with Sonic Seb through it).
Dimitri visited the offices of Ruby (his brother is the founder) and we got along so well he invited us to lunch at his house the next day. He had just bought a Triumph TR6C that wasn't running right. Steve Redmax tuned it up and made it fly and Ben shot a feature for Sideburn 5 there and then, perhaps the first on Dimitri Coste and his motorcycle passion.
Since then we've raced together, and the 'French Steve McQueen' has contributed a number of stories and attended all the UK Dirt Quakes, plus become a regular DTRA racer, and raced all over the world.
First and foremost, he's a great photographer and, for Sideburn 20, we have an eight-page portfolio on some of his favourite recent images.
If you want to see that first feature on Dimitri and his Triumph, you can read it in Sideburn 5. We have a very limited amount of this issue in our Back Issue Deal.
There is also a feature on Dimitri racing Pikes Peak in Sideburn 10 (available individually or as part of the back issue deal)

Above is a short video made at Dirt Quake III in 2014, featuring his two children. G

Spirit of the Seventies Speed Triples

Spirit of the Seventies are working on some very exciting projects.
These are the renders Kev works up, but they have an uncanny ability of making bike that are exactly like these concept drawings. G

Wednesday 25 March 2015

Garrett Replies!

In response to the post below...

Aw man! I love that! Thank you! 

Honestly, Sideburn gets a huge amount of credit for getting my lazy old butt back into racing after a 25-year break from MX! Thanks so much for the inspiration and motivation. 

BTW, the ol' Aermacchi is coming out of retirement this summer... 

I'm digging getting my copies of Sideburn from Travis these days. Great excuse to get up to his shop. 

Heading to Waco, TX for a 1/2 mile this weekend. My first race back since a broken leg/torn ACL last spring

Always strap up your helmet, kids! G

Garrett B: A special place in our hearts

Found this photo of Garrett B over on Travis's 747 Rider blog.

Long time Sideburn blog readers might remember Garrett has a special place in our hearts, because his gorgeous Aermacchi was the subject of our very first blog back in March 2008 (we started the blog after the mag, how very old-fashioned, eh?).

Since then and now we have made 4928 posts. If you look on the sidebar on the right and scroll to the bottom you will see we have added a list of all the labels we semi-religously use to link posts from the SEVEN years of this blog. Only enter the tangled web if you have two hours to lose.

Garrett and his son and daughter all race on the Colorado flat tracks. In this photo Garrett is wearing the very first T-shirt design we made, the Dick shirt. G

UPDATE: Following our own label trail reminded me I'd already posted this photo. It works!

Tuesday 24 March 2015

Sideburn Back Issue Deal

One back issue and one T-shirt for £15 plus postage.

Back issues included in this deal are:

Make sure you select the correct T-shirt size when you choose your issue.

Sizes S to XXL.

Get yours at the Sideburn shop.
*We have limited quantities of the long sold out issue 5 in this offer. They are very, very slight seconds because the laminate cover on the cover is curled along on part of one edge, but this issue is long gone, so it's a good way of filling a gap.

London Grime

You makes your choices. Photo by Bonzorro. BP

SB DTRA Bolt party snaps

Thanks to everybody that came down and made this a great launch party - some revelers came all the way from Belgium. The original schedule of 2-6pm bled to 12am-12pm. Good times. BP

Monday 23 March 2015

Flattrack by Dial M Films

Flattrack from Dial M Films on Vimeo.

Shot at the DTRA meeting before last year's Dirt Quake. The first voice you hear is Sideburn Ben. Then there's Drogo, more Ben, me and David Death Spray. G

Directed and Edited by Joe Marcantonio
Produced by Death Spray Custom and Dial M Films
Camera by Andrew Lawrence and Joe Marcantonio
Sound by Neil Johnston and Tom Joyce at Factory

Metalsport Wheels

We had an email from a friend in California telling us about a new wheel company. MetalSports wheels is run by Rodney Aguiar, a custom bike builder who worked at Roland Sands Designs and Performance Machine for years. Here's what he says...

I'm just a regular guy not a big business. I knew there was a demand in the flat track world for billet wheels so I stepped up and spent my money to get people a quality well-designed wheel. I worked designing product for Roland Sands for the last five years and quit there in Feb of last year. I knew it was a gamble making them but I wanted people to have the option of running a billet wheel if they so choose. I've been an amateur roadracer and have been riding motorcycles since I was 5. My friend, Mark Cernicky, introduced me to flat track four or five years back and I thought it was so cool that it was such a grass roots form of racing. People were doing it for the love of racing and I wanted to try and help out those racers that wanted something new and fresh. Long story short I was trying to stoke people out.

See more at MetalSports Wheels

Sunday 22 March 2015

Sammy's Framer

After years of racing his own Harley XR twin, Sammy got on a Kawasaki twin and won. The Savannah, Georgia race was a non-AMA event, but with plenty of top riders all in the South-East for Daytona Speed Week.
I thought Sammy had done a deal with Yamaha, so I was surprised to see photos of him on this bike.
If he is running his own show again, it's likely he'll keep his XR750 for the half-miles, that Harleys still  do so well on.
Not tied to one manufacturer, Jake Johnson had Harley, Ducati and Kawasaki to choose from in the twin races last year. G

Saturday 21 March 2015

0mm off-set

Can any BMX heads please help me identify this flatland 1 1/8" head stem, American I presume? I think the 'H' stands for Hart? or Hurley? I'm flogging it on eBay. BP

Friday 20 March 2015

Sideburn and DTRA at Bolt Tomorrow

Don't forget about this tomorrow.

Gorgeous race bikes
Slightly less gorgeous racers to quiz about getting started
DTRA Photo expo
New number board font launch
New Sideburn mag and merch

The day event is followed by an evening knees up hosted by near-legendary clothing brand Eat Dust.

Thursday 19 March 2015

Mees By Quickfall

We have a ton of new products coming up in the next week or so. Stuff we've made and stuff we've bought in because we really like it.
First up is the latest screenprint made in conjunction with Ryan Quickfall. He created the artwork of Jared Mees for the exclusive interview with the current US Grand National Champ for Sideburn 20. He also screen printed these posters himself, clever fella.
  • Printed on premium stock 300gsm Somerset. 
  • Size: approx 500 x 380mm (looks great even in a cheap frame)
  • Hand numbered and signed by artist. 
  • Posted in heavy-duty mailing tube. 
  • Limited edition of 30.
£40 plus post.

NOTE: If you order with any other items your art print and the other items will be posted separately to protect the art print.

Get it at the Sideburn shop

Day 13

Day 13 of my regime, and no stones, or even single pebble, have been lost. Disappointing, considering that's plodding every day except Sunday and the last two days as Man Flu has grounded me.
Blogging hours traded for jogging miles have not given me healthy enlightenment, although I should feel slightly self righteous. I'm certain that I've gone down a cup size from an E to a double D. My wife says I 'look' slimmer.
Then I thought running to up-tempo music might up my RPM and increase calorie burn. It sort of worked for 20 minutes but made me want to puke, and I don't like going to discos in daylight hours anyway.
Seeing as this is all in aid of a Sahara adventure, it makes sense to better replicate the stifling atmospheric conditions with a fur lined coat and my new Barstow 100% goggles. Combined with the oversize DJ headphones, I look like a weekender bender escapee. Jog on. BP

Wednesday 18 March 2015

New GNC Framers in Progress

DTX bikes*  can produce good racing, and they're a good way for some into the sport, but the hope that killing framers** would bring more mainstream advertising and support into AMA Pro Flat Track has been proven not to work.
Instead, the main thing it's done, from my fan's perspective, is lost some of flat track's unique identity. Imagine you were a motorbike enthusiast, travelling through the US on holiday and heard that a big flat track race was happening just up the road and you could get along to see it.
You don't do any research; you don't know much about the sport, except what you've seen in On Any Sunday. So you just roll up and pay your money at the turnstiles and take a seat with a beer. But it's a short track race. And everyone looks like a motocrosser. No one is in the cool leathers you've seen photos of. And the bikes don't look like you expected. They all look like motocross guys. But they're not even doing jumps!
Eventually you might get into the racing, because that's still good, but the whole experience is dulled. And sport has to be an experience if it's going to reach beyond the hardcore.

I don't blame the AMA for trying, but go back through the blog and you'll see we were never fans of the idea. And neither are we Luddites, kicking against progress and digging our heels in. But pro flat track isn't growing and no one is addressing this issue, yet. The aesthetic appeal of flat track bikes and flat track riders in their leathers is one of its great strengths.

So I was pretty excited when our friend Roger F sent us links to photos of brand new framers being built around engines that haven't been used in pro flat track before. Thanks Roger!

* modified modern motocross 450s
** modern engines in custom, dirt track specific chassis, with dirt track tanks and bodywork
This first one uses Harley-Davidson's new liquid-cooled 750 Street engine. It's being built by a dealer from Maryland, Harley-Davidson of Frederick. This is an engine Jared Mees talks about in his exclusive interview in Sideburn 20.
The chassis is a traditional cradle frame, but with a twin backbone. This is a wet-sump engine, so no need for oil-in-frame.
I don't think H-D of Frederick have plans to race this actual bike, they are developing the chassis to sell for road and track.
An update on H-D of Frederick's Facebook shows the exhaust in progress.
 The project on its 19in wheels.
The amazing rear suspension linkages made by M3 Racing.

C and J Yamaha FZ-O7
The other interesting brand new framer is the Yamaha FZ-07 in a C and J chassis. 
Because Yamaha designed this twin to hang from a frame, not be surrounded by a cradle frame, the design is less traditional and, in many ways, more modern.

According to Southland Fabrications (where these shots are taken from), C and J have already shipped ten chassis with another ten coming soon.
Can it have similar success to that of the Kawasaki 650 framers?
Southland Fabrications add that:
Race Tech Suspension has shocks available already. 
Grand Prix Glass has tail sections available
Metalsports Racing wheels have wheels available.
Fred @ RaceTec Racecraft has aluminum tanks available as well.
Cory Texter was racing the Babe DeMay/ Memphis Shades Yamaha FZ framer out in Florida and Georgia before Daytona (below). He had some teething problems, but the twins season doesn't start till the end of May, so they have time to shake it down. He said it was fast straight out of the box as a stock engine.

And that's another thing, AMA, why have 10 weeks of hibernation between Daytona and the next round? I know the weather is unpredictable in the mid-west, but surely there's a better way. G
Static photo: Flat Track Live