This page for all our members in Victoria different States of Australia & N.Z Have their own pages it contains all state & local events that are relevant to each section.Double click highlighted headers to read articles. (Note: to Section contributors if supplying photos please provide Articles as a Word Document)
Phillip White & Dorothy Le Claire’s Adventures in Europe
Dear all. Okay – we are finally back but not exactly as we wanted to arrive!!!! The bike broke down outside of Amsterdam – about 1.5 hours into our big adventure! This is the barren field and windmill just off the road where we suddenly heard this loud crunching/mechanical noise. We pulled off the motorway into a petrol station – thank god – and Phillip proceeded to take the bike apart to the dismay of some young ‘go-fast’ riders who had pulled in behind us to have a look. He couldn’t see anything so we got back on to try to limp it at least to a town – supposedly only 5km away….We pulled back out onto the motorway and about 1 km along it suddenly made a very loud bang!!! and stopped completely. We were so awestruck by this time ourselves that neither of us said a word and the noise just seemed to suck all of the air out of the surrounding area – it was really weird! We pushed it then to the next exit – thank goodness only about a km and down the ramp into what we thought was another servo – it was but remember this was Sunday and nothing open!!!! The servo though does give petrol if you use a credit card at the pump. As we were nearly in tears at this stage – along came a white van with the name of some company on the side and Phillip about tackled the guy explaining our plight and offering money if he would take us to the nearest hotel in the next town. The guy had two children in the front seat in baby seats but did help Phillip get the bike in the back along with him in the total darkness and said I could ride up front with him and the kids…….only problem is the child seats took up all the front seat except for the driver’s seat so I had to stand with my back to the windscreen and my face about two inches from the 2 year old. He kept beating my face with his crushed drink box and pelting me in the stomach with his little shoes! At one point I asked the man what he did – said he was a builder and had his kids for the day as his wife was at work. So I asked what the wife did……….she’s a cop! I’m standing in a van – no seatbelt with my big red ass (don’t forget I had my big red down jacket on as we were on the bike) plastered across half of the windscreen! I was not exactly thinking about taking pix but wish I had. 14 km. later – a bit more than the 5 we were considering pushing the bike – he dropped us off at a motel and I waddled in to see if they had a room – I swear I would have dropped on the floor if they were full. Luckily they had a room – Phillip gave the guy a $50 – offered him $100 but he wouldn’t take it – and we fell into the bar for a long night of tales of whoa and broken dreams! NOTHING is open on Sunday so we couldn’t check out the car hire situation or shipping arrangements until the next day. Two bottles of wine later we had definitely decided we would take whatever car they had and Phillip would break down the bike further and we would put it in the boot if we had to – sounded like a good idea at the time!! Remember a rod was sticking out of the crankcase and it was hemoraghing oil. Phillip had locked it up near a bush for the night in hopes that most of the oil would drain out before morning. Monday – rang Europcar only to find out they had no French cars as we were wanting to drop in Avignon or Aix if possible and this was Holland. Phillip was about to hang up when the man said well….he did have a large van with French plates and if we wanted we could have that at small car rates if we wanted to take that and drop in Avignon! Phillip about choked and couldn’t answer fast enough that we would take it. A quick taxi ride to Europcar in Breda and we were back at the motel by 10:30 with the task of loading up – how do you get a motorcycle into a 9 seater – brand new Mercedes van???? Phillip had to take out the seats (off their tracks) and go to the nearby McDonalds to get some young lads to help him lift the bike into the back of the van!! Voila! We checked out about noon and headed south. The motorway through Antwerp was a nightmare and I was driving with Phillip holding the GPS that by now had lost its voice for some strange reason even though he hot-wired it to the battery he took out of the bike….Twice when he wanted me to turn right from one motorway onto another I had to cross the hatched area and go down into the ditch before coming out on the exit – I’m sure there were some swearing truck drivers behind me but somehow we made it out and were on our way to France at last! Stopped for the night in the champagne region at a lovely hotel/vineyard. The food was magnificent (as all French food is) and a good night’s sleep was a welcome repas! Tuesday woke to thundering rain and it was another nightmare on the paige with trucks spraying gallons of water across the road and into my windscreen as Phillip kept saying faster, faster! To say our marriage has lasted this adventure is an understatement! Pulled into St. Remy about 7 last night and were very happy to be home. Beautiful blue sky – no rain, flowers out everywhere. Much different picture than the morning we left at 2 degrees and rain. Returned the hire van with no problems and the broken bike is safely in to huge under house garage come workshop at our house.
It is beautiful here now and lots more people about/in town. We are off on a motorcycle trip next week for 3 days – Neil (Friend) had a trip to Cevennes with some overseas customers and wants us to come along to help – chat and drink with – I’m sure not really a hard role for us to play. Then we will settle down for a week or two and May will roll around and you will be here! Hurray. Can’t wait to see you both. As Phillip has the bike to fix now we won’t be planning Turkey until he finds out more about what he needs to arrange in the way of parts. He has lots of contacts here in Europe and they have already all offered to help in some way. So that was our adventurous trip to Scotland! It was barely above zero most days and certainly below zero most nights of our 10 day stay. Andrew and Elaine Wilson are old bike chums of Phillip’s and they live in a charming, old stone house in a small town outside of Edinburgh called Haddington. They were very hospitable and Elaine had taken a few days off work to show me around. We spent a day in Edinburgh and saw all the sites of the Castle, Royal Mile, Museum, etc. No shopping in that part of the UK as I found the prices very high and the exchange rate too low for my liking. Elaine is a very good cook so between us we ate very well every night. They boys would work in Andrew’s large workshop and we would sit around a large fire at night watching old British motorcycle series (Quest) not sure if you ever heard of it. Watched the Wild One with Marlon Brando one night a well, took long walks along the Firth of Fourth and generally had a very nice time despite the cold.
Dorothy Le Clair
Sunday 3rd of Feb, the IIRA first club ride for the year
Daryl Colt kindly organized a great tour. We meet at the Shell Laverton out bound service station 9am for a 9.30 blast off. A great number of fellow riders gathered around wondering what was it and how can one ride an Indian Chief ? At the blast off moment Ian Rhook calls to say that he’s just leaving his home, so everyone fought hard the urge to rev up and go!
Bonnie and I did back up in our car, a pleasure to see the fine country ahead in Holden’s finest. That Cheeky Mr Rhook and his trusty seven forty and a one finally putt putts into view Chitty chit sounds was signal to all that had there bikes to start kicking there Indians to life. Well that said the only ones kicking the starters were Daryl and Rhook as the other eight bikes were of the push button VROOM VROOM variety, stamped out on the shores of the great rice consuming nations.
The weather was a little over cast in the morning and cleared up soon enough, into this Daryl led us all into the back roads skirting Mount Cotterell heading for Bacas Marsh. Here we found in the town sporting grounds a car show, live bands and many folk. Daryl looked at his watch and aloud us one hour to have a look around, if we stayed for three hours i don’t think we would have scratch the surface. As many cars of all types kept rolling in. Our two shy members were stopped by the ticket lady telling them; “entry five bucks walking in or with your bikes love ” Both men looked at one another as if deciding were to make the first insition in theater. The others looked at there Jap bikes and said ” nah stuff it ”
Finally the Harley camp was ruffeled as the sight of the only Indians rolled into there patch. We walked a wee bit saw lots of interesting Machinery as we drank our coffees, the stand out would have to have been a rusty old 34 chev lowerd into the weeds copped roof that would make a midget uncomfortable running a big block truck motor straining under the wait of an enormous blower. What exhausts? only short eight inch pipes screaming look at me and the plates read WAKEUP !
Back on the road again we headed for Meredith, the pleasent roads made for easy riding for the old bikes, the bush land was yellow mostly, needing a good drink from above. One road began to steepen then suddenly hairpinned to the right to climb even higher, this would have tested our two heros.
Meredith pub was happy to see us good folk, they showed there kindness with delicious food that we all enjoyed . From here we headed to Anakie then turned to the last stop the You Yangs . Here we looked over the great land we call home views that seem to go for ever. Stevie on his trusty Bonnie meet us telling us stories of times gone by. i kept seeing a great late Rod Leaman, for my last time at this sacrad place Rod came too as back up in Ken the fwd.
Well from here we all headed for home, Daryl did us all proud a great day out was had by all, check out the pics.
Many many requests on FaceBook for the Gypsie Tour 2012 Article which has been held back for the Smoke Signal’s now that is out I have re-produced it here, the esteemed contributor Phillip White pictured above has written another great article for you to enjoy (click on the links below)
Gypsie Tour 2012 article
The Little River Run August 2012
Happy travellers at Little River: (l to r) Daryl, Chrissy, Steve, Phillip and Mark.
The Little River Run turned up an interesting mix of machinery – even by our standards – plus one of two challenges for young Chris Horner.The bikes included two Gilroy Chiefs, a Kings Mountain bike, a rigid frame Army Scout, a plunger rear Sport Scout (albeit using Holden power rather than its own) a BSA Hornet, two Bonnevilles, a Virago, plus a Springfield Chief.Horner’s lovely Sport Scout is still at the being-sorted stage and ended up throwing in the towel. Which meant Peter Kime dashed off to the rescue with his trusty HR Holden. That wasn’t before Horner had the unusual thrill of pushing a motorcycle over the Westgate Bridge.So does he have any advice for anyone thinking of undertaking this unusual form of exercise? ”Don’t,” is the emphatic response ”And if you do, don’t look back!” Apparently the sight of six solid lanes of angry traffic heading straight at you is a somewhat daunting one, but in the end it all ended well. The Little River pub was flat out and serves a pretty decent meal. Also, Ian Rhook did his usual great job of finding some weird and wonderful back roads.
Ian Rhook on his Scout.
Anniversary Run 2012
They said it wouldn’t last, 2nd Anniversary Run since our Association was founded, we all went to Noojee Trout Farm for a BBQ, the day started grey & overcast & temp was going to be 16C , unfortunately Daryl Colt & Peter Kime pulled out at the last moment & a couple of others that were worried about rain that never really came, so “eat your heart out”. Our V-Prez was on his new Dark Horse one of ten made in this fetching blue colour, everyone admired it which was good to see, Mark also modelled his genuine Indian leather jacket so that was in good use on the day as well.The ride was fairly easy Mark was tail-end Charlie & managed to not crash into any older Indian’s while enjoying the slow running in period, Chris Horner was on his 1966 Bonneville as the newly acquired 1941 Sports Scout is not yet finished Stevie & partner Chrissy were on the Bavarian Indian as I once was told by a IMCA Committee member! Thanks to Chrissy for a sterling job with the supplies for lunch sausages, vegetables, sauces,drinks & cooking the fish we all caught, Sammy Vella was in his element must be the Maltese blood, they all love fishing we had a fabulous day plenty to eat & amongst good friends Rod Leamon & his mate were in the Toyota Land- Fill (Cruiser) and carried all the food Connie & Paul brought the kids to highlight that we are a family orientated Association, Mark’s fiancé, Sandi turned up later in the afternoon enthusiastic as ever it was good to see her as well in all a great day roll on 3rd Anniversary Run
A small report on The Great Race kindly forwarded by Rally Co-Ordinator David Reidie
Good day out for a ride to Williamstown BIKES by the Bay 2012
Good day out for a ride to Williamstown ,had to drive – 1 bike in Tassie,2 bikes having surgery. Arrived at 9:30am and the bikes were rolling in to the Seaworks shed. Spent couple of hours wandering around the bikes on display and watching more bikes roll in. The weather outside was perfect and it was just as good watching the Boats on the Bay as it was watching Bikes by the Bay. Excellent display and variety of bikes, from Ducati desmo 250 , Chris’s Invincible Jap look resplendent with its wicker side car , Leigh Goodall”s Brough look alike with the Harley motor to a whole range of Jap / English and American bikes. Counted about 8 Indians , only a handful of old Harleys (Lot of new Harleys). 1 Harley that really stuck out was a very well restored civilian WLA, although you needed sunglasses for the bright Yellow and Red colour scheme. Some very nice Ducatis , always fancied a 250 or 450 Desmo, the 250 on display was done up nicely as a café racer. A V- twin you do not see much of was a 350 Morini, 2 units on display, very pretty and delicate looking bike.The Williamstown Club have been doing Bikes by the Bay for quite awhile now and it only seems to be getting better – always a good turn up. Caught up with Mark at his Zorros Apparel stand , business was brisk even had an enquiry to join the club from a bloke interested in joining the club who had a 58 Enfield Indian. As I was about to leave Sammy rode in on his Indian and Rod and Ian arrived also to have a club get together around Sammy’s bike. Sammy struck some striking poses on his Indian for those wanting to take advantage of a photo opportunity Missed Stevie on his BMW, he arrived as I left. Left at 11:00am and as I went down Williamstown road there were still more old bikes on the way in, I would say that the shed would have been packed in the afternoon as there was not much room when I left.
The Vic Creswick run and shed tour got a good turn-out, though not everyone made it.
Creswick Run (Vic) – Nov 7, 2011
Surveying the morning weather report was a mixed bag: hot day, turning to thunderstorms in the afternoon. It looked like Association ride mascot Chief Rain in the Face was lining up a special treat.
In any case a gang of nine lined up at the departure point in Deer Park, with five Springfield Chiefs, a Gilroy, plus three Japanese products – all of them V-twins!
Ian Rhook played tour leader, until the local fauna decided otherwise. Up to that point he’d led us on a fantastic little mystery tour of the backroads towards Ballarat and Creswick, when he suddenly stopped, got off the bike and started staggering around in circles. It wasn’t, as it turned out, a demonstration of the new club touring dance, but the poor chap had been hit in the face by a bee and was suffering a nasty allergic reaction.
He was bundled off to hospital, while Peter Kime kindly sorted out the bike. The good news is Ian is now fine, if a little miffed he missed out on the trip.
We were to meet up with Don McRae and spouse Yvonne, in Creswick, for a tour of the gent’s shed. The catch was we had no idea what either of them look like – how would we recognise them? It turned out the 1924 Chief outfit was a bit of a give-away. The American Hotel was the lunch venue. Don’t order a meal unless you’re really hungry. The serves are big and the food tasty.
Don is quite a character, with several old Indians in various states of repair, plus a number of modern bikes, including a Suzuki TLR1000 and a customised Buell. We fell in love with his immaculate Matchless single, and ogled the sparse frame parts of his vintage BSA, being prepared for a cross-continent run.
He has a substantial engineering shop in place and reckons it’s a good thing he’s retired – otherwise he’d have no hope of keeping up with the resto projects.
As it turned out, Chief Rain- in- the Face was in a good mood. We copped only a tiny amount of rain, so the ride home was a quick jaunt back down the freeway. Our thanks to Don and Yvonne for the quick backroads run, the shed tour and of course the conversation and the tea!
Healesville Run 04/09/11
Healseville Ride Weekend by Stevie Higginbotham (click Highlight)
Yea Run (Vic) 07/08/2011
Four souls ventured out into some notoriously moody weather for the Yea run on August 7: Phil Pilgrim (1947 Chief), Phillip White (1953 Police Chief), Vice-President Mark Barthelmie (Indian-less that weekend and therefore on his Hogley) plus Guy Allen (2003 Gilroy Chief).
We tripped over the local Aston Martin club in Strath Creek, the members of which steadfastly refused offers of a swap…something to do with the impending rain, apparently. They did offer us large slices of delicious buttered date loaf for morning tea stop which we “Hogged Down” (sorry, Mark).
Lunch was in Yea, where it rained but only while we were eating. The run home was finished by 3.00pm – still very cold but enjoyable.
Pilgrim obliged with the token breakdown, with his ammeter bezel making a bid for freedom. Fortunately it was unsuccessful.
Presidents Report 2011 ( double click highlight)
Bikes by the Bay April 2011
SITTING BULL RALLY March 2011 by Phillip White (Click highlighted area for full report)
Iron Indian Riders Midnight Express Run.2011 as reported by Guy Allen Editor of M/cycle Trader/ BikePoint
We started in Mill Park, north of Melbourne, at (coincidentally) midnight, and blundered around in the dark for a few hours.The experience convinced Yours Etc of two things: I really would like an old Indian in the shed; And, temporarily dodgy knee aside, there’s nothing wrong with a gallop on your Triumph Daytona 1200, no matter what time it is. Travelling at well past witching hour with a couple of 60-plus-year-old Indians is a little surreal, and probably the best medicine you could ask for. Sharing a coffee at 3.30 in the morning, and slithering home an hourlater, changes your outlook on life and makes you concentrate on the basics. Stick to the saddle and get home
FEBRUARY BEAFORT RUN 2011 by Phillip White
Sammy Vella’s Review of the Tassie Tour (Click on link Titus on Tour of Tassie 2011) is a great read for the people that missed out this is how it all panned out, “eat your heart out”
The Midnight Express Run 2010 by Phil Pilgrim