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April 2007 Club News

Perth Branch | Economy | Indian Harley 2 Day  | Coalmine | Narrikup | Calendar

Indian Harley 2 Day Rally

THE 2 Day Rally is the Bunbury Indian Harley Club’s biggest event of the year, and a great opportunity to sample the hospitality of this great club and to meet other members of the old bike movement.
1949 500cc Norton International

Your bike has to be 25 years old to take part in the Rally - this is a rolling 25 year rule by the way. Apart from Indian Harley members there were members from the Perth Vintage Motorcycle Club, Velocette Owners Club, Classic Club, Early American Club, Historic Motorcycle Racing Club, BMW Owners Club, Scott Owners club and of course our club, represented by Huw Jones, John Bond, Matt Wells, Andrew Haydock, Bob Rees and Reg Bostock (DNA - details below).

We were down one member from the previous year, I think maybe he felt the excitement from last year (just getting there) was enough for one life time! ha ha. So Bondy, Reg and Matt were around to pick me up at 8.30 on the Friday. On the road once more. Andrew was to meet us in Bunbury and return with us to Albany and Huw was riding down on Friday afternoon.
1942 Indian 750cc side-valve Bobber

Off we went, once more in sheer madness, attempting to reach Bunbury and do the 2 Day Rally with no back-up. Bondy did have Jan follow in the car with camper towed behind, so if he did break down at least he had somewhere nice to sleep. Bondy rode his 70’s BMW and sidecar (once in Bunbury Jan would be navigator in the sidecar - good thinking).

Matt rode my 1952 Sunbeam S8, which was running well but was leaking a bit of oil, actually it ended up as a total loss oil system. I rode my 1962 BMW with sidecar (to put all our camping gear in, as well as a heap of tools).

Reg rode his early 80’s R65, which didn’t qualify for the event, but thought it would be nice to enjoy the ride anyway. Didn’t like to bring the BSA as he was saving it for the April week away. Off we sailed to the South-West and appropriately it started to rain, on and off all the way to this side of Manjimup - first time its rained for ages.

So I pulled over in Lockyer (in the gravel by the side of the road) to get my wet weather gear out, which I had of course stowed at the front of the Steib sidecar. This has a long torpedo shaped nose and I needed to take the cover and screen completely off to reach it.

By now I was quite wet as well as most of the stuff in the sidecar. Never mind I was rolling again. I caught up with the others in Denmark. We continued on. A coffee break in Walpole before we headed to Manjimup for fuel and lunch. One of our mob was complaining of a sore bum (that’s through riding of course) - can’t remember who it was now.

We continued on to Donnybrook for the next break. The old bikes were starting to attract a bit of attention wherever we stopped. “You’re never alone on an old bike!” Disaster, saw Reg heading back the other way, Bondy had disappeared too. It appeared Reg had lost his tent - fell off the back of the bike by the Collie turn-off. A lady noticed it fall off and followed Reg to tell him where it happened. It most probably would have been a better idea to have picked it up and given it to him - but there you go.

They had a good look around, but could not find it. Reg decided that camping wasn’t meant to be and turned around heading back to Albany which was a shame, I’m sure we could have found someone for him to sleep with but . . . Finally we arrived at the Bunbury Motorcycle Club Rooms, quite a bit earlier than last year.
And the Sunbeam was ticking away beautifully, although spewing out a fair bit of oil on the left side.

Shortly after we arrived Huw arrived on his R90S BMW.
By now there were quite a lot of tents, campers, caravans etc in the grounds with all types of bikes, early American Indians and Harleys were in abundance as were older British bikes. We headed into town for some dinner, found a nice little cafe where we could park the bikes and sat outside soaking up the Bunbury ambiance - I think that’s what you call it?
1974 Harley-Aermacchi 350cc single

We then headed back to camp with a carton to share between us and to mingle with the other campers.
By this time Andrew had arrived from Perth on his 70’s BMW - popular aren’t they? Next morning over 140 bikes were lined up for the start of the Rally, and the weather was perfect. We were on the long course, some 200-240kms, kick-off was at 10 am.

It really is great fun, following the route sheet, getting your card stamped at various check-in points and hopefully not getting too lost. I’ve been on five 2 Day Rallies over the years and this is the first one I haven’t got lost on!

The organisation that goes on behind the scenes at the event is a credit to the Bunbury Club. We finished the day’s ride just before 4 pm, and I’m pleased to say that all our bikes were still rattling along. An excellent meal was devoured in the evening put on by the Club’s many volunteers, and only for $10. There’s also a fully licensed bar manned as well to quest your thirst.

A quiz followed, we assembled who we thought were the more brainy people on our table, but unfortunately we were wrong and did as well as we did last year. Good laugh though - which is what its all about.

Next morning 8.30 start for the second day of the rally. We poured about 2/3 of a litre of oil in the Sunbeam, which was getting the benefit of an oil change as Matt rode along - not missing a beat though. (Although Matt missed a few checkpoints I hear).
Morning tea stop on Sunday - great lineup of old bikes

On the Saturday there is a short and long ride, but on Sunday everyone is on the same route - so its great seeing bikes from veteran onwards on the road at the same time. Lunch was provided on Sunday at the Club Rooms, same price as the evening meal and once again very nice as well.

Presentation took place afterwards with a heap of prizes, unfortunately none of our mob qualified for any. If they had one for “Most Oil Used” we would have been OK. Matt and I thought we’d ride down to Balingup and then along the road to Nannup (one of the best roads in the State) and camp there the night.

Huw headed back to Perth, Bondy, Jan and Andrew decided to stay in Bunbury the night and we would meet up at Bob and Mary’s place in Boyup Brook. After discovering there was no meal at the pub in Nannup we dined in the cafe next door before returning to the pub for a few beers and a couple of games of pool.

Topped up the Sunbeam again, using the rest of Penrite’s best. After packing everything away we headed to Bridgetown, another great road. Here I managed to find another bottle of Straight 50 and the Sunbeam managed to drink the lot, but it was running very well.

We then found Bob and Mary’s place - no Bob as he was having his knee done. John and Jan and Andrew were already there - the Bonds were about to leave. Mary gave us a tour of the house and shed, great house, and I’d love to have a shed like that, Bob has 2 old trucks in there, the bikes in a smaller shed next door.

After polishing off some of Mary’s Anzacs and coffee, the three of us decided to head for home. This time heading towards Frankland on the newly completed bitumen road. And what a great road it is, and, relatively free of traffic. There’s also a brilliant rest area by the side of the Tone River, with shelter, toilets, BBQ’s etc, immaculately kept (even got a visitor’s book).

At the Frankland River Roadhouse we were greeted by Glenn and Kathy Dickerson, where we had an excellent lunch. Glenn and Kathy have a 1934 Norton outfit which is on display in the workshop. They were very keen to join the Club and indeed did. So if you’re passing through, call in and introduce yourself.

Finally we arrived in Albany, by this stage Andrew had gone ahead and it was me and Matt making the triumphant arrival in Albany on bikes with a combined age of 100 years. We’d ridden just under 1000kms in the 4 days. The BMW had a loose muffler nut which I tightened, and the Sunbeam lost a nut and devoured nearly 2 litres of oil!
Great to arrive home with bikes still going after a long ride.

This will be rectified shortly as I’ve now a new set of gaskets to replace the old hardened ones. Great ride, company and weekend. You only live once, so fix that old bike up and make next year’s rally your target and see what you’ve been missing out on.

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