Author Topic: INTERMOT Motorcycle Show - Cologne Germany - trip report  (Read 8915 times)

Offline Chris

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INTERMOT Motorcycle Show - Cologne Germany - trip report
« on: October 08, 2014, 05:56:27 am »
INTERMOT trip 

Part 1

We were up Saturday morning at 0430 for a 0530 departure to Cologne for the 2014 INTERMOT motorcycle show.  Itís a little over 300 miles away so I was hoping to make it in 5-6 hours.



On this map you can see Cologne on the Rhine near the western border of Germany.  We live near the Czech border.  Our town is just about where the "g" is in Nurnburg.





At first the usual fall foggy mornings persisted but after the sun came up it started to disperse.


]


As things continued to clear it became possible to up the pace a bit.





But even at those speeds we can expect to be passedÖlike by this small BMW station wagon.



As with any trip there were the usual bathroom breaks



And construction zones, especially between Frankfurt and Bonn.



But, eventually they ended.  (The sign loosely translated reads goodbye and arrive safely.)



As we neared Cologne we were well ahead of schedule and in need of coffee.  So we decided to stop in Bonn to hit the Starbucks there.

Entering Bonn:



And crossing the Rhine River to get to the old town center.



Found it!



Since we were ahead of schedule we wandered around the old town center for a bit to stretch our legs.  It seems a bit quieter than when it was the capital of Germany and that seems a good thing.  Our explorations were rewarded by finding an English shop selling all sorts of British snacks and treats.  Yahoo!  Maltesers and real crisps!   



We headed off to Cologne, which is just up the river about 25 miles from Bonn and made it into town without much trouble.  Finding the parking confused me for a bit and I must have passed the entrance to the Koln Messe where the show was being held about three times.  Hereís a shot of one of the display halls (#11) as I drove by it (again!).  The motorcycle show was held in 5 of these halls which were all about the same size.  Itís a huge show.



Since I had bought our tickets online a couple of weeks ago and had printed up the passes we didnít need to bother buying tickets, especially at ďon the dayĒ higher prices.  Seemed like almost everybody had done the same and hence no lines at the ticket booths.




One of the big differences about the INTERMOT show and others I had been to was that this show was both a consumer show and a trade show.  The difference was fascinating.  It was chance to see the infrastructure of the industry as very many booths were for the suppliers who made the parts.  The next 10 or so photos are just smattering of the things I noticed from several different companies.  It was interesting talking to the vendors from countries like India, China and Taiwan.  The basic idea I came away with is these folks would be very glad to make you any part you needed.  One vendor in particular had a poster bragging about their ability to reverse engineer a part and produce it in low production lots.  As a lover of old Brit bikes I spotted a lot of old Norton, Triumph and Lucas reproduction parts on his shelves.  As I made a point of telling him, they were better quality than the originals. I specifically asked if it would be possible to make a reproduction Suzuki mirror in a small quantity of perhaps 100 units.  He assured me it would be quite possible and made sure I had his brochures and his card before I walked away.   HmmmÖ.






















« Last Edit: August 03, 2017, 11:06:14 am by Chris »
CHRIS
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CURRENT BIKES

1978 GS1000C / 1979 GS1000S / 1981 CM400C / 1986 RG500 GAMMA / 1988 R100RS / 1991 K100RS / 1997 GSF1200 BANDIT

Offline Chris

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INTERMOT Motorcycle Show - Cologne Germany - trip report part 2
« Reply #1 on: October 08, 2014, 05:57:01 am »
INTERMOT trip 

Part 2

KOSO gauges were there as well as ACEWELL.  Hereís the KOSO display.  I like them both.







There was every sort of riding gear you could imagine being displayed from dozens of vendors.  I couldnít possibly show you even half of them all so Iíll post a few so you can get a sense of what was there. 

The DANE stand has some really good looking riding jackets.  I was particularly intrigued by the ĺ  length jacket and reflective vest with built in red LEDs on the back and white LEDs on the front.  Iíd think that would help your conspicuity at night.








All the big and little names in helmet manufacturing were there.  I just took this photo because I thought the helmet was a little comical. 



Riding gear from Pakistan.  They specialize in leather gear and will make your design in any quantity you want.  It seemed well made to me and with stouter leather than most.



Really good brake setups from the Netherlands.  I loved the old widow maker Kwacker 750 triple with real brakes on the front wheel.  The Bimmer is pretty cool too.














Nitron shocks from the UK are made better than Ohlins but much less well known.  Cost about the same as the Swedish stuff.



This is new, at least to me.  An automatic bike wash like the ones you run your car through at the gas station.  Iíd love one next to the garage.  From France I think.


KXD very mini bikes.  What is about mini bikes that make even reasonable adults act goofy?






Desmoworld is a German Ducati aftermarkets parts specialist from Furth which is only about 50 miles from my house.  They make nice but pricy Ducati ďblingĒ parts. Naturally, their stand was right next to the Ducati factory display area.






« Last Edit: August 03, 2017, 08:34:40 pm by Chris »
CHRIS
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CURRENT BIKES

1978 GS1000C / 1979 GS1000S / 1981 CM400C / 1986 RG500 GAMMA / 1988 R100RS / 1991 K100RS / 1997 GSF1200 BANDIT

Offline Chris

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INTERMOT Motorcycle Show - Cologne Germany - trip report part 3
« Reply #2 on: October 08, 2014, 05:57:30 am »
INTERMOT trip 

Part 3

The Ducati stand was big and crowded.  There were a lot of people trying the various models out for size as well as a good number of folks just wandering around and lookingÖjust like me.  I didnít think I needed to sit on any of the Ducs since I was pretty sure I already knew the answer as to whether Iíd be a good fit on one.  But I did want to see the new Scrambler model to see if it was really something new or a rehash of the tried and true Ducati cafť racer formula.  You know, the recipe that includes a big L-twin motor, tube frame, and challenging ergos?



As always, the Ducati stand was good for all sorts of eye candy. 

There was a racer:



There was a pretty model with a Duc:







There was a racer AND a pretty model:


All cool stuff youíll agree but where was that Scrambler?

Found itÖ



The Scrambler is the Swiss Army knife of Ducatis.  It can be configured in a variety of ways and comes in a variety of colors.  There are four versions: Icon, Classic, Urban Enduro, and something called Full Throttle.  Each version has individual paint jobs, wheels, fenders, seats and trim parts. Plainly you can mix and match until you get a version you like. Iím sure the aftermarket parts companies wonít waste any time adding to the options.  And surprisingly, for a Duc, its ergos are pretty benign.





I like it.  It looks good and probably goes pretty good too.  But that small and very cool looking front fender also looks pretty darn useless.

I think the Scrambler may be Ducatiís version of the BMW RnineT.  The Beemer has established itself as the customizable platform of choice for a lot of European builders and accessory firms and I think the Ducati Scrambler is aimed for a similar niche.  That the RnineT has succeeded at that was pretty evident wandering around the show.  In both the custom bikes area and as various accessory firms rolling showcase the RnineT kept showing up.  Hereís an example of what I mean at a custom parts and accessories stand, Notice the menu listing whatís available in front of the bike.  And yes, I think they came up with a pretty good looking bike.







In a totally different vein, this was a small helmet makerís stand.  The young fella representing them told me they are designed in Portland, Oregon and manufactured in China.  The ĺ helmets are aimed mostly at scooter riders and the bicycle helmets are a much better looking and way more protective replacement for those lame styrofoam things most bicyclists wear that make you look either like a mushroom or a volunteer for brain surgery.  I liked them myself and enjoyed the whimsy of the designs.  Heck, I thought the name of the firm was cool and appropriate for a helmet makerÖNutcase helmets.





Meanwhile, over at the Kawasaki stand, there was some talk of a new model as well.  Everybody must have heard about it because, as you can see, there were so many folks standing around you couldnít see the motorcycles.



But I was determined to get the shots since I had heard about the new bike too.  Making my way through the crowd I first encountered the mob around the z800 bikes.  They have several in the various colours that are offered and there were people just waiting for an opening to hop on one.  They are nice looking bikes but I didnít feel like bucking the crowd to get too close to one.  Sorry.



My wife, proving sheís smarter than me, headed for the info desk to see what sorts of literature was available.  Note the Deals Gap shirt.  Also note the profound boredom of the girl in charge of handing out the brochures.



I went off looking for information too and found this z1000 cunningly concealed under a girl.


She must be bored too since sheís also looking off into space.  I suspect itís a pretty weird job anyway.  Just sitting on a slowly revolving motorcycle and trying to ignore the fact that herds of motorcyclists are ogling you.  I wonder how many hours they leave the poor girl up on that bike?  I never did see a shift change the whole 6 hours we were there.

Oh, the bikeÖ.yes I like it.  I know it looks like itís a cast member for the next Transformers movie but the styling looks aggressive and integrated into the mechanics to me. I almost said ďedgyĒ but that word has been vastly overworked. I understand that there are a lot of folks who donít think much of the styling.  Thatís good, thatís one less bike they have to think about buying.  You nay-sayers may be paddling against the stream thoughÖthe new Suzuki GSX-S has similar styling so maybe this is a trend.

On to the star of Kawasakiís show.



This is the subject of the most concentrated media hype I can remember ever attending a new models introduction.  There were leaks, teaser videos, and speculative motorcycle press articles by the dozen about this thing.  And, after all that, now that we know something of it, itís even more of a mystery.  What, for example, is someone supposed to do with this very exclusive and hideously expensive motorcycle? (It costs 50,000 pounds according to the Visor down website.)  The H2R, which is what weíre looking at, isnít street legal.  Itís for ďtrack use onlyĒ according to Kawasaki but as far as I know thereís no racing class open to a supercharged limited production 1000cc race bike.  So, whatís it good for?

Well, it looks really good for one thing.  The styling is spot on in a kind of ďBat-BikeĒ sort of way.  The paint is amazing when you see it.  It looks like black chrome and is just impossibly shiny. Except for the many parts that are carbon fiber of course.





Itís pretty darn powerful too with supposedly 300 hp on tap.  Itís also the forerunner of the eventual street legal version due out later this year.  (Which will be pretty pricey tooÖ25,000 pounds.)

And it sure looks good.




I think this bike wasnít built to do anything more than be a technology demonstrator and a means to get people excited about Kawasakiís again.  This is Kawasaki saying itís still got the moxie and resources to build bikes that can compete with the best there is.  Thatís one reason the Kawasaki press releases make such a point that the Kawasaki motorcycle division drew on the whole Kawasaki industrial base, including industrial gas turbines and aviation, to build this bike.  This bikeís chief purpose has to be as a corporate flagship and to drum up interest in the follow on street legal version.

Because if they built this thing thinking theyíd sell enough of them even at $80, 000 USD a pop to recoup the development, tooling, and production costs theyíve been standing way too close to the sake bottle.

Taking our leave of the wacky world of unusable motorcycles as moto art hereís the new model that deserved to be Kawasakiís star at the show.  And itís very usable! 

The 1000cc Versys:




Speaking of really expensive motorcycle goodies, the Ohlins stand was close to the Kawasaki venue.  Good stuff.



Hereís a nice rolling Ohlins display:











« Last Edit: August 04, 2017, 10:22:18 pm by Chris »
CHRIS
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CURRENT BIKES

1978 GS1000C / 1979 GS1000S / 1981 CM400C / 1986 RG500 GAMMA / 1988 R100RS / 1991 K100RS / 1997 GSF1200 BANDIT

Offline Chris

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INTERMOT Motorcycle Show - Cologne Germany - trip report part 4
« Reply #3 on: October 08, 2014, 05:57:56 am »
INTERMOT trip 

Part 4

There was a pretty cool display of old Yamahas in one hall titled ďForty Years of YamahaĒ.  There were some old friends in that group I can assure you!  Hereís just a few:



Here's a fine example of Parker's RADD front suspension we were discussing several months back on Yamaha's GTS1000.



Oh my!  Isn't this '72 just a pretty as a picture?  I bet it didn't look this good when it rolled out of the showroom.







I have to comment on this one.  Itís a 1982 or so RD250LC.  I had the í82 RD350LC in blue when I was stationed in the UK and it remains one of my very favorite bikes.  They werenít sold in the US although the US eventually got the RD350LC YPVS which was known in the US as the RZ350.  But the LC was in some ways a better bike, more balanced and a willing co-conspirator for any sort of looney riding exploit you could dream up.  Itís no wonder they were known in Britain as ďElsie WonderĒ.   The only reason I sold it was to buy my RG500.



This show really did have everything a motorcyclist might need.  That includes custom race vans.  Like here:





A German sidecar association was there as well and brought along some pretty wild machinery:







Iím sorry but this just WRONG!  Turning a Bimota into a sidehack?!?!  Iím surprised people donít chase him down the street waving clubs and throwing bricks.







There was a nice display of about 30 custom bikes of all sorts.  Here are a few that caught my eye.



A chopped NimbusÖnow Iíve seen everything.






Note the BMW 1600cc 6 cylinder engine.





Sym had some nice smaller bikes that really appealed to my wife.  I know theyíre from Taiwan but I think they are sold in the US now.  Is that right?



Since Sym makes cars and bikes it only makes sense that they would try to make something that combines characteristics of both.



Confusingly all Sym bikes seem to be known as ďWulfĒ and only the displacement changes the designation.  Glad Iím not their parts guy at the dealer.  Can you imagine the conversation?  ďWhat kind of bike do you have?Ē  The same answer everytime..ďA Wulf.!Ē





Yamaha didnít have too much but they did have this odd little three wheeler.









Yamaha MT-07



Some old guy's race bike.



Check out the bug spattered French endurance racer.  Did you notice the race number is illuminated?  Look at the LEDs inset into the number on the fairing.   Makes sense


« Last Edit: August 05, 2017, 06:41:11 am by Chris »
CHRIS
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CURRENT BIKES

1978 GS1000C / 1979 GS1000S / 1981 CM400C / 1986 RG500 GAMMA / 1988 R100RS / 1991 K100RS / 1997 GSF1200 BANDIT

Offline Chris

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INTERMOT Motorcycle Show - Cologne Germany - trip report part 5
« Reply #4 on: October 08, 2014, 05:58:31 am »
INTERMOT trip 

Part 5

The Indian stand was a nice surprise.  I wasnít expecting the new Scout and itís a great looking bike.  I particularly like the looks of the Scout engine.  The addition of the Scout model is a big step for a new start up bike maker.  The move to having additional models is very significant.  I hope it means that Indian will finally be around for a while.  Iíd love to see them make a go of it.










OK, this is a fair warning.  I am biased here.  I really like BMWs and have owned quite a few.  So I was already predisposed to like what I saw at the BMW stand at INTERMOT.  But I wasnít expecting to see three new models that moved the bar in their respective genres.  BMW has been on a roll in the last few years with new models and entry into motorcycling areas they previously hadnít competed in.  This weekend I got to see that Beemer isn't slowing down at all.  In fact, they're gathering speed.



The stand was a huge one, noticeably larger than most manufacturers, 





The first bike we saw literally stopped Rose and me in our tracks.  BMW has a new RSÖthe R1200RS!    Thatís Rose taking its photo in this shot.



And here I am looking it over very closely in the photo she took.



Now, you may be wondering why this model means so much to Rose and I.  Simple, the first big expensive bike I owned was a 1976 BMW R100RS. I bought it the year after Rose and I were married and I was stationed at Ramstein AB in the Rhein-Pfalz.  We saved up for months to get that bike. It was a really big deal to buy that top of the line bike as a young E-4! 



We loved that bike and travelled all over Europe on it.  Eventually, just before PCSing back to the states it was stolen in Amsterdam.  Over the years Iíve owned two other R100RSís and wouldnít mind finding another í76 to add to the garage.  So I have a real soft spot for Beemer sport-tourers. BMW arguably invented the sport-tourer genre with that original R-RS.  But, in recent years BMW hasnít really built any bike quite like the original since it left production in the mid 90s.  And it wasnít just me that missed it.  A lot of folks had  found that the original was a genuine do-anything bike that could equally be used to go for a six-pack or groceries (gotta love hard bags!), commute to work, ride to visit the folks 800 miles away, or have fun on a twisty country road.  So a lot of riders in the US mourned the passing of the RS and figured BMW wasnít going to build another.

Till now.

It uses the new liquid cooled boxer twin first used in the R1200GS adventure bike a couple of years ago, and putting out 125 hp and 92 ft-lbs of torque.  Notice that the front suspension is telescopics rather than the trademark Telelever front end that was on most Beemers a few years ago.  The riding position is very neutral and spacious thanks to the 60 inch wheelbase.  Seat height is BMW normalÖslightly tall at 32 inches but not bad.  I tried it and it fits just fine.



I donít know what the weight will be but it looks like somewhere around 500 pounds should be close.  Itís good looking bike in person and Iíll borrow a couple of BMW press shots to show the colour schemes available. (UPDATE:  BMW specs say it's 520 lbs with a full tank of gas and ready to go.)





And yes, hard bags are offered:



Problems?  I only see one so far.  The front fender needs to be a lot longer or the water and road debris being thrown off the front tire will scour the front of the boxer timing cover.  I bet it doesnít take the aftermarket long to come up with a fix for that.

The second new model is really a different version of the RS I was just writing about but without the fairing.  Mechanically and the bodywork except for the fairing seem identical.  Here it is.

The R1200R



So why build this bike since BMW just released the s1000r as their super naked bike.  I think this one fits another niche entirely.  This bikes competition isnít the Aprilia Tuano but the Triumph Speed Triple.  And, looking at the styling, perhaps the Kawasaki z1000 and z800 too.



Sorry, the shot I took of the R1200R front view is no good so Iím going to have to borrow another BMW press shot.



I like it.  But not as much as the faired RS.

The third new model was, of course, the new S1000RR.  For 2015 the double r gets a some frame mods, new cylinder head, slightly tweeked body work, better electonics and cruise control.  The automatically adjustable suspension from the HP4, which has been discontinued, is an option.




Those changes get the bike more power, up to 199ps, and lighter weight, now about 450 lbs, and better handling.  And, perhaps, no speeding tickets for the rider thanks to the cruise control.



At this point I have to point out that the new RR is putting out as much power as Kawasaki is claiming for their as yet unreleased street version of the supercharged H2.  And unlike the Kawi the S1000RR has been raced, and with considerable success.  BMW made that point by decorating the bridge at their stand with racing S1000RRs.

As a matter of fact, one won the Senior TT at the Isle of Man this year.





The last time a BMW won the Senior TT was in 1939.  And that bike was at the Show at the BMW stand too.



I also spotted this one on the bridge containing the other S1000RR racebikes.






I guess you can tell I was pretty impressed by the BMW stand.



Across the hall was the Metzler stand. 




Triumph didnít have very much new but it was a nice stand to visit.





They did show a new version of the Street Triple which has the Daytona tail.  Looked good I thought.



We wandered into the accessories section of the stand to see if there was anything the young Triumph owner would want.  I didnít see anything wonderful enough to reach for my wallet though. My wife kept looking for goodies for Ian and eventually I told her I could try to buy the nice shirt the blonde out front was wearing and even offered to help the blonde out of it.  For some reason my frau didnít see the humor in that.



Nice stand at KTM but when Rose tried the smaller road bikes she didnít care for them.



I like the looks of the old style Royal Enfields but sitting on them they feel pretty small and I would guess that the novelty of having about 30 hp would get old after awhile.  They sure look good though.







I was surprised at the H-D stand.  Some nice bikes but they didnít seem to have that electric bike on show.  I would have guessed they would have put that up there as proof that H-D is a technologically advanced company.  Maybe they werenít sure how the usual HD customers would react to it.



Now this is an advanced technology company!



Honda was introducing the very interesting V-4 powered VFR800X  adventure bike.  It uses the engine out of the 800 Interceptor and knowing Honda, probably works like a charm.  Iím not sure if I really like its looks yet but theyíll probably grow on me.



They also had the CB650F which I donít believe is sold in the US.  I think itís US equivalent is the CBR650 which I think is mechanically identical but faired.  Too bad.  I think the CB650F is a nicely updated version of the great Honda bikes from the mid 70s like the CB400F  and the CB550F.  Looks like fun to me.





They had another successful Honda tucked away by the back wall.



While Rose and I were leaving the hall we passed these folks.  I stopped to look.



Theyíre made in China and so far specialize in pretty modest scooters and motorbikes.  All pretty basic transportation.  But after talking with them watch out for the future.  They plainly have big plans for bigger and better bikes.


« Last Edit: August 08, 2017, 08:46:31 am by Chris »
CHRIS
________________________

CURRENT BIKES

1978 GS1000C / 1979 GS1000S / 1981 CM400C / 1986 RG500 GAMMA / 1988 R100RS / 1991 K100RS / 1997 GSF1200 BANDIT

Offline Chris

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INTERMOT Motorcycle Show - Cologne Germany - trip report part 6
« Reply #5 on: October 08, 2014, 05:59:15 am »
INTERMOT trip 

Part 6



If you liked the photos of the new naked Suzuki roadster that were crowding the internet a few months back youíre in for a treat.  It looks much better in person and the blue paint job that was featured in the internet leak postings isnít nearly as good looking as the black and red paint scheme.  This bike is also dripping with the cool features needed to make it a real alternative for the likes of BMWís S1000R and Kawiís z1000.  Brembro brakes and ABS up front handle the braking and propulsion is furnished by a version of the long stroke GSXR-1000 engine from the mid 2000ís.  One thing I really like about the way Suzuki is handling this is that the same bike is available with, or without a fairing.  So, whether the buyer wants the wind protection or not Suzuki makes sure the lack of plastic isnít a deal breaker. 







They had a cool engine cut away showing the internals of the revamped long stroke engine from the older GSXR-1000.  Looks like good stuff doesnít it?  I love engine cut aways.



I do think itís clever that they have it available either with a fairing or not.  The GSX-1000S is the naked bike.  The GSX-1000F is faired.  BMW is also following the exact same plan with their R1200R and R1200RS models also introduced at INTERMOT.







There were other things to see at the Suzuki stand.  There was a new and bigger V-Strom that I failed to get a photo of.  And there were a couple of what I would assume are concept bikes to show us theyíre still dreaming up stuff. 







There was also a glimpse of the new Suzy MotoGP racer.  Iím sure there are still plenty of blank spots to be finished under that fairing.




No fears for Suzukiís future though.  I spotted at least one enthusiastic future customer trying things out.



There was a German online shop that specializes in video cameras with a stand at the show.  I spotted a very miniature video cam and stopped to talk about it with a very friendly and enthusiastic salesman.  He sold me on the little thing, called the MycroCam, They arenít sold in the US yet, which is too bad for you guys.  Iím thinking about getting a couple of them since they are cheap enough that you can think in multiples. 

The Mycro Cam is pretty amazing.  For starters, it really is pretty microscopic.  Itís smaller than a car key fob and only weighs 17 grams.  Because itís so small and light you can mount it places that would be impossible for a GoPro.  And, itís a lot cheaper than a GoPro, only 99 euro which is $128.62 at the bank on base today.  Itís so small you can mount it on RC aircraft, the tail light of your bike, or on your dog.  Pretty cool!  Hereís the link to the shop that was selling them at the bike show.

http://www.cam-shop-online.com/Mycrocam/Mycrocam-720-HD.html



Here's one mounted on the nose of a small RC helicopter.




Our next stop, and the last at this INTERMOT show, was the combined Moto Guzzi / Aprilia stand.  Letís look at the Moto Gooses first.

Hereís their half of the stand.



I really wanted to see the new V7 Moto Guzzis.  The bike is a very niche item in the sense that itís fairly old fashioned and not a real performance powerhouse.  But, on the plus side, itís good looking, oozes character, has an easy to live with shaft drive, and the engine is fairly robust if not particularly powerful.  Any of the V7 series should be an easy bike to live with and itíd be something different. I think it compares most directly with the Triumph Bonneville and the boys from Hinckley manage to sell a lot of those.  This version of the V7 is an exact counterpart to the Triumph Bonneville Thruxton model.  It looks pretty good I think, but my wife, ever the practical realist, took one look and said it looked like a lot of polishing waiting to happen. Sheís probably right but I still think it looks good.





Itís also available in other colour schemes and trim.





Moto Guzzi also had their monster California cruiser at the show.  The more I looked at it the better I liked it.  Iíll confess, Iím not really a cruiser guy but the California looked pretty good to me.  I particularly like the way to fuel tank wraps around the cylinder heads.  Itís just a good looking bike.  (I have to steal another press release photo to show you since the only photo I had of it had a display stand in the way.)



The view from the saddle emphasizes those two great big jugs sticking out to either side so you can admire your engine even while riding it.  Like this:



I think this would be a great alternative to the run of the mill cruiser.  And hey, itís even still a big 1400cc V-Twin.

The other half of the stand was the Aprilia side. 



Their big news was the 1200 Caponord adventure bike.  And it really was BIG news because that thing seemed huge!





It has some clever features and some things that left me scratching my head in bewilderment.  Things I liked were the big liquid cooled twin cylinder engine and clever wheel rims that had the spokes joining the rim outside of the tire mounting area so you have the strength of straight pull spokes and no possibility of leaks.  I liked having things like cruise control and an adaptive shock as available options.  What made me wonder was having the center stand as an option.  Thatís plainly nuts on an adventure bike which needs a center stand as an essential item.

Still, the Caponord is a serious attempt by Aprilia in perhaps the fastest growing market segment.

I thought you might get a laugh about this one.  Itís the Aprilia RS4 125cc sport bike.  Itís a serious bit of kit with top of the line suspension, brakes and a cutting edge aluminum frame.  But, it only puts out 15 hp and top whack even with a skinny teenager on it is just less than 80 mph.  The bike handles like a dream Iím sure, but I canít imagine paying about $6500 for anything like that.




Thatís it for the photos from the motorcycle show.  We left it late Saturday afternoon and were just about worn out.  We checked into our hotel on the Rhine River near the old city and were just too pooped to even go out to eat.  Fortunately, it turned out the hotel restaurant was pretty good and surprisingly featured Japanese food.  Well!  That worked just fine for us as we spent most of the last decade living in Japan.  So, comforted by gyoza and tonkatsu and enjoying the really excellent beer we had a stay in night.  I collapsed early as our day had started pretty early.  But it was a really good day.

The next morning we made it to hotel restaurant for breakfast and then checked out to go explore Cologne.  We parked right at the Cologne Cathedral, the Dom, in an underground parking garage under the Domplatz.  Hereís a couple of shots showing the Domplatz and the Dom.





The Dom is magnificent and deeply impressive. It took over 600 years to build and was only finished in 1880.  The two spires are over 500 feet tall and just shorter than the Washington monument.  In a pinch it can hold 6000 people for a service but it normally seats 3000. And, itís nothing short of a miracle that itís still standing.  The city of Cologne was bombed many times during WW2 and was the first city subjected to a 1000 plane raid.  The inner city was more than 90% destroyed and rebuilding their city took the citizens of Cologne the next 50 years, only finishing at the end of the 1980s.  Hereís a shot from the end of the war to show you what I mean.




Leaving the DOM we wandered down towards the river as I wanted to check out the riverside park that had been installed since I was last in Cologne.  On the way I encountered an angel.



You can see that Rose just walked on by but I had to stop and look.  The angel even spoke and suggested I take a photoÖso I did.  Then, smiling broadly, the angel stuck out her hand and asked for a tip.  Somehow, thatís not how I thought these heavenly matters workedÖ

Continuing to the park we saw a young fella making bubbles much to the delight of everyone in sight, young and old.  He was really good at it.





You know, it must be very cool to make a little money doing something that is intrinsically quite fun, makes people smile, and make you the hero of every kid in sight.  It even makes pretty girls smile at you.  Sounds like a perfect job to me.



I walked on down the rivers edge to watch the traffic for a little bit.  Those huge river barges can carry about 150 40í standard containers and move up and down the rivers at a pretty good clip. We call them barges but anything 400 feet long and displacing five or six thousand tons is a ship really.  This one was out of Antwerp.  Can you see the crews cars parked on the afterdeck?



Not all the river traffic is that big.

 


Leaving the river we walked towards St. Martin's passing some colorful houses.



St. Martin's is a parish church in the Romanesque style run by the Benidictine's.  It too was almost completely destroyed in 1940s and was only reopened in the mid-1980s, over 40 years after its destruction.   In the 1945 photo I posted earlier you can see the ruin of St. Martin's.  It's the tower sticking up in front of the only remaining bridge arch standing above water.






By early afternoon we needed to start thinking about heading home.  For the first time this weekend I faced being separated from my two constant companions.



Actually, it was fun doing the photography and I enjoyed the challenge of shooting with only available light inside the exhibition halls.  And believe me, I followed the usual digital shooters dictum which is too shoot lots and delete ruthlessly.  I actually shot about four times the number of photos than I posted here.  A third of those were deleted as either not good enough or redundant and remainder were sifted to produce these. I hope they were OK.


But now for home.  First thing we needed to do was gas up the Volvo.  We found an Esso to get the cheaper BX gas rates.  Filling up off base always makes me intensely grateful to not be paying German taxes which make up most of the difference between US and European gas prices.  I pay $3.67 per gallon for E10 Regular gas.  The German price is 7.37 per US gallon.  As you can see, the fill up which cost me $52.88 would have cost a civilian $106.13.  Whew!  But as soon as I leave Germany I pay whatever the pump says so we donít get out of it all the time.






I bet this guy at the next pump isnít worried about what the gas prices are.




The ride home was a pain as we were tired and the traffic was heavy with plenty of traffic snarls around the many constructions zones.  Even with that we managed to make it home in five and a half hours.  This sign was at the end of yet another construction zone near Frankfurt but Iíll use it to close out this trip report.  Loosely translated it reads ďBye and have a good drive.Ē  Works for me.



« Last Edit: August 08, 2017, 09:20:37 am by Chris »
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Offline Sarge

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Re: INTERMOT Motorcycle Show - Cologne Germany - trip report
« Reply #6 on: October 08, 2014, 01:08:45 pm »
Great report Chris. Love the bikes. Cologne is a beautiful city. Brings back fond memories of our trip there and the Dome of Cologne.
Semper Fi

Offline Chris

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Re: INTERMOT Motorcycle Show - Cologne Germany - trip report
« Reply #7 on: October 08, 2014, 02:45:26 pm »
Great report Chris. Love the bikes. Cologne is a beautiful city. Brings back fond memories of our trip there and the Dome of Cologne.

Hey Darrell, 

There will be some photos of the Dom and the alt Stadt at the end of the report.  We went to the bike show on Saturday and on Sunday wandered around the city after breakfast at the hotel.  The Dom is amazing and it's miraculous that it survived WW2.  Koln isn't the prettiest city in Germany but it has made a lot of progress in making things better.  Almost all the damage from WW2 has been repaired now but as late as the 1980's there were still about 2000 buildings in the city still needing to be rebuilt.

Thanks for the kind words and I'm glad you like the photos so far.  I still have about 65 to post.  I managed to go through the 500 or so I took last weekend and get the number I wanted to post down to about 170.

I should be able to get the rest of them up over the next day or so.


Take care buddy,

Chris
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Offline Luvmystar

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Re: INTERMOT Motorcycle Show - Cologne Germany - trip report
« Reply #8 on: October 08, 2014, 06:54:41 pm »
Thanks for the report Chris.That looks like an awesome experience.
Marc

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Offline Marid2apterbilt

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Re: INTERMOT Motorcycle Show - Cologne Germany - trip report
« Reply #9 on: October 08, 2014, 09:07:23 pm »
Thanks for the report Chris.That looks like an awesome experience.

++1
been waiting to comment till the report was done.   Love it so far, Thanks..
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Offline BudLong

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Re: INTERMOT Motorcycle Show - Cologne Germany - trip report
« Reply #10 on: October 09, 2014, 06:52:24 am »
yeah Chris,

really enjoying all the pics with the adjoining commentary

Offline Chris

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Re: INTERMOT Motorcycle Show - Cologne Germany - trip report
« Reply #11 on: October 09, 2014, 12:09:07 pm »
Thanks for the report Chris.That looks like an awesome experience.

++1
been waiting to comment till the report was done.   Love it so far, Thanks..

yeah Chris,

really enjoying all the pics with the adjoining commentary


Thanks guys! I appreciate the kind words.  I added part 5 today and we're almost finished.  One more installment and I can stop overworking my copy of Photoshop elements.  I also added a map to the first installment.


Hope you like the new installment.

Chris
« Last Edit: October 09, 2014, 12:12:50 pm by Chris »
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Offline Sarge

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Re: INTERMOT Motorcycle Show - Cologne Germany - trip report
« Reply #12 on: October 09, 2014, 06:14:53 pm »
The new installments are great. Love the new Indian Scout.
Semper Fi

Offline BudLong

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Re: INTERMOT Motorcycle Show - Cologne Germany - trip report
« Reply #13 on: October 10, 2014, 07:55:02 am »
soaking it all in.  keep it coming brother

Offline PAULRIDES

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Re: INTERMOT Motorcycle Show - Cologne Germany - trip report
« Reply #14 on: October 10, 2014, 05:18:15 pm »
Thanks Chris for taking the time to post all this.  O)

It is like being there or as close as I will ever be.

Pretty amazing shows they have - seem way ahead of the states.

Some of those models (two legged) ain't bad either.  :happypep  From an Old Man's Point of view.  :happypep >:D
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Offline El Borrego

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Re: INTERMOT Motorcycle Show - Cologne Germany - trip report
« Reply #15 on: October 10, 2014, 07:13:35 pm »
Good report and plenty of pics to go with the info.  Great job.  Had I thought of it before you went to the show I would have asked you to get that supplier that replicates everything to make me two front rotors for my Valkyrie.  Glad you and Rose had a good trip.  I'm sorry I didn't get to meet you while you were here this summer.  Don't get to see IanC much anymore either.  Loved visiting Germany even if it was over 30 yrs. ago.

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Re: INTERMOT Motorcycle Show - Cologne Germany - trip report
« Reply #16 on: October 11, 2014, 02:05:02 am »



And tha...tha...that's all folks!


Thanks for the kind words.  I'm glad you liked it.  and Paul, if it really was a little like being there, then I succeeded.


Chris
« Last Edit: August 08, 2017, 09:46:53 am by Chris »
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Offline Sarge

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Re: INTERMOT Motorcycle Show - Cologne Germany - trip report
« Reply #17 on: October 11, 2014, 06:57:20 am »
The Dom was the most impressive thing we saw in Cologne. Especially the inside with all the gold and body parts of the saints. They must have cut them up and spread themaround.
Semper Fi

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Re: INTERMOT Motorcycle Show - Cologne Germany - trip report
« Reply #18 on: October 11, 2014, 09:22:59 pm »
(Comments as I scroll through the posts in another tab so I don't forget anything.)
Thanks for being our man on the ground at INTERMOT and the fantastic write-up!

Definitely interesting about the replica manufacturers, as we've talked about before they could be pretty handy. I'm not sure if I would trust them for critical components but for things like mirrors, lenses, emblems and such I'd say they'd probably work great. I wonder what, if any, quality differences you could expect from China, Taiwan and India?

That RXF Koso looks trick. Maybe for a future streetfighter build or a certain Kwak 650 build if it ever comes back to life. The one on the bottom right is the unit I've been eyeing up for the GS.

The LED jackets are interesting. I'd think in foul weather especially they could be nice to have. Removable, rechargeable battery pack I assume? I guess that could be a bit of a hassle.

The Ducati Scrambler looks nice, but I think the BMW looks better.

The H2R is a useless way for Kawasaki to flex it technological muscles. I appreciate the bike but that is a really expense track day toy and unless that bike has a serious electronics package it'll be spitting riders left and right I think.

The Yamaha MT-07 is hideous. Then I look at it more. Nope, still fugly. But...   OK, ugly can be fun right? Just don't tell your mates.

I really do like the Indian Scout and if I were in the market for that sort of thing..well, it'd be tough to explain at work.

The new RS (and the old one for that matter) looks the biz. Looks pretty comfy too. Hard to tell in the pictures, does the front look like this: o.0 That's what I see when ever I see an S1000RR. I do think they could have color-matched the hard bags a bit. They look bland there. Maybe the top of the bag blue and the lower half silver. Seems like someone just put a dull smudge on the ass of an otherwise edgy and exciting bike. The R1200R, yes please. I've been looking at old air head street fighters and this seems like a modern take on that. Very cool. It does need a plain jane 11" round headlight though.

Triumph is pretty disappointing. Their big news of the year is  sticking a Daytona tail on a STR. While it does look better, I'd hardly call it news worthy. I hope they will have big news next yea, like bumping the 675 up to a more currently competitive 750 or 800.

The red Royal Enfield looks nice.

I am really surprised about H-D's effort or lack there-of at the show. They made the Livewire, for example, to show young people (and Europeans I'm sure) that they can be edgy and modern too and then chose not to show it.

Honda continues to make absolutely brilliant, fantastic machines...that do nothing for me.

The Yamasaki name made me chuckle. The Chinese are so damned original.

That new Zook is sexy. I like it in both versions but I'd have to go nude. I would have liked to see a more comfortable seat. i am curious though, why the faired version? I mean, I like it, I like it a lot but....then I'd get the GSXR.
I dunno about there being blank spots under the skirt of that GP bike. Suzuki has been following the GP series all year pitting themselves against the times of the previous weekend. While they haven't been beating winning times last I looked they have been posting very competitive middle of the pack times.

Neat little cam. With the release  of the GP4, I'm hoping to find a good deal on a used 3.

The v7 looks kiiler. I'd like a sport version with USD forks and big dual discs.

Kris liked the GSXS and the red V7.

Audrey would have been in bubble heaven.

On gas prices, might explain why motorcycles are so popular in Europe.


1978 Suzuki GS1000EC - Completely custom.
2012 Triumph Daytona 675R

Offline Chris

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Re: INTERMOT Motorcycle Show - Cologne Germany - trip report
« Reply #19 on: October 12, 2014, 05:06:08 am »
Ian, thanks for your comments.  Let me address them in turn.


Thanks for being our man on the ground at INTERMOT and the fantastic write-up!


You're very welcome.  I'm glad you liked it.


Definitely interesting about the replica manufacturers, as we've talked about before they could be pretty handy. I'm not sure if I would trust them for critical components but for things like mirrors, lenses, emblems and such I'd say they'd probably work great. I wonder what, if any, quality differences you could expect from China, Taiwan and India?

Good question.  I suspect quality will depend on the individual firm rather than the country of origin.  The quality of the parts and goods from all three countries at the show was fine. I would point out most of us use parts and accessories already from these three countries as that's where major firms go to have some of their stuff produced.  Several of the Chinese firms made a point of stating they were ISO 9001 certified.  The one difference I noticed is that the Taiwanese and Indian firm's representatives more consistently spoke English so perhaps communications with those firms would be easier.  For example your mom and I had a nice chat with a young Taiwanese woman whose stand specialized in very nice lines of motorcycle specific tools. (Good stuff by the way.  I picked up their flier.) Having said that, the Chinese are so eager for your business I bet they won't let language stand in the way. 



The LED jackets are interesting. I'd think in foul weather especially they could be nice to have. Removable, rechargeable battery pack I assume? I guess that could be a bit of a hassle.



They must have a battery pack in there somewhere but a quick pat down didn't reveal it so it must be pretty small and light.  Only one of the garments is a jacket.  The other is a reflective vest like ICON started making for the military riders a few years ago. Those vests are starting to be worn by non military riders, at least in Japan and Europe as I see one every once in a while and the major motorcycle gear lines often have ones for sale.  Obviously, if you're wearing a reflective vest to be seen the addition of the LEDs front and rear just makes sense.  Could make all the difference some foggy morning...


I really do like the Indian Scout and if I were in the market for that sort of thing..well, it'd be tough to explain at work.


Couldn't be harder than explaining the little Trumpet I should think.  Well, let me think about that for a sec.  Yes, I see your point.  With the Triumph you can easily point out that HD doesn't make anything like that.  But with a Scout you'd be in flagrant violation of the HD bro code since you could have had a 1200 Sporty of some sort.


The new RS (and the old one for that matter) looks the biz. Looks pretty comfy too. Hard to tell in the pictures, does the front look like this: o.0 That's what I see when ever I see an S1000RR.


The new RS is comfy and the passenger seat is something to use rather than just decoration as on current sport bikes.  The front end shows a family resemblance to the new model Bimmers but is more symmetrical.  Like this:





I'm going to add some more photos of the R-RS here just because I like the bike.  Guilty as charged.

















I do think they could have color-matched the hard bags a bit. They look bland there. Maybe the top of the bag blue and the lower half silver. Seems like someone just put a dull smudge on the arse of an otherwise edgy and exciting bike.


I agree with the hardbag colour comment.  I think they should have either been plain black or matched the primary colour in the fairing.  Two tone as you suggest would be great too.  Here's the bike in full on pack mule mode.



Note the center stand.  Any real traveling bike has to have one of these or you'll be hating life when you find yourself beside the road in Lower Asswipe, Arizona with a flat tire. Or even just trying to pack the hard bags with them on the bike.  If you try that with the bike on its sidestand the lower bag keeps trying to dump its contents onto the pavement.



The R1200R, yes please. I've been looking at old air head street fighters and this seems like a modern take on that. Very cool. It does need a plain jane 11" round headlight though.



The R1200R and the RnineT both pay homage to that air head street fighter idea.  One is more consciously old school and the other is, as you say, a very modern take on the idea.  Both seem perfectly good bikes so you pays your money and you makes your choice.  Go for the one you like the looks of.  I think the RnineT would be easier to change around to suit your individual tastes but thatís because it was designed to be able to do just that.


That new Zook is sexy. I like it in both versions but I'd have to go nude. I would have liked to see a more comfortable seat. i am curious though, why the faired version? I mean, I like it, I like it a lot but....then I'd get the GSXR.
I dunno about there being blank spots under the skirt of that GP bike. Suzuki has been following the GP series all year pitting themselves against the times of the previous weekend. While they haven't been beating winning times last I looked they have been posting very competitive middle of the pack times.




Yes, I think the new GSX-S1000 is a great looking bike and I have high hopes that it will help lift Suzuki out of the doldrums that have afflicted it since 2011.  As to why the faired version you might consider this.  When was the last time you rode an unfaired bike at autobahn speeds for any distance?  At speeds consistently above 80 mph the wind beats you to, if not death, then exhaustion.  When I rode the Bandit to Denmark last year I ended up a lot more tired than I would have expected based on just hours in the saddle.  Even with the flyscreen on the Bandit the constant wind buffet at 90+ just wears you out.  So, seen in that light, it just makes sense to give the punters a choice as to whether they want a little wind protection or not.

Interestingly, the US Suzuki folks will have quite a few faired non-GSXR street bikes for sale this year.  Go to their website and check it out.


I hope youíre right about the Suzki MotoGP effort.  Iíd hate for them to go out only to be another back marker.



The v7 looks killer. I'd like a sport version with USD forks and big dual discs.


The V7 is a charmer isn't it?  I like that V7 racer you picked and the red paint job too.  I think USD forks would sort of go against the idea of it being a retrospective on the old racing Gooses of the 70s but hey, to each his own.  Iím always in favor of good brakes.

 

Kris liked the GSXS and the red V7.

Audrey would have been in bubble heaven.


Iím with her as I like those two quite a bit too. 

Maybe she just has a thing for red bikes.  I wonder if I could convince her that the 675R would look a lot better red all over instead of just the frame?  Hmm.

Yes, I think Audrey would have a lot of fun here as would you and Kris.  Certainly thereís no shortage of things to see and do. (and eat and drink too!)


« Last Edit: August 08, 2017, 10:28:46 pm by Chris »
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Offline Chris

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Re: INTERMOT Motorcycle Show - Cologne Germany - trip report
« Reply #20 on: October 12, 2014, 07:03:32 am »

The Dom was the most impressive thing we saw in Cologne. Especially the inside with all the gold and body parts of the saints. They must have cut them up and spread them around.


Darrell,

I couldn't agree more.  The Dom is the most impressive thing for miles and miles.  You're right about the importance of holy relics to medieval cities.  The presence of holy relics would have meant your town would be a destination for pilgrims and hence, income.  It's much like modern cities and working for tourist dollars. It's free money in a sense.


Chris
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Offline Marid2apterbilt

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Re: INTERMOT Motorcycle Show - Cologne Germany - trip report
« Reply #21 on: October 13, 2014, 05:40:29 pm »
If anyone disagrees it can be changed but "Sticky worthy" seems an understatement here..

Thank you Chris, Im sure it took a lot to get all this posted..
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Offline Chris

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Re: INTERMOT Motorcycle Show - Cologne Germany - trip report
« Reply #22 on: October 14, 2014, 01:55:55 am »

If anyone disagrees it can be changed but "Sticky worthy" seems an understatement here..

Thank you Chris, I'm sure it took a lot to get all this posted..


Sam,

I'm glad you liked it.  I posted it to share the experience and if my fellow ETBers enjoyed the post that's great...I succeeded and the time was well spent.  What I really enjoy is starting a discussion and reading folks responses to my posts. So, if anyone wished to comment on or disagree with some of my comments and conclusions that's better than fine with me.  

Certainly I appreciate the many kind words folks have shared.  That you think it should be kept around as a sticky is a nice compliment and I'm very appreciative of that.

Chris



« Last Edit: October 14, 2014, 01:57:34 am by Chris »
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Offline Willie

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Re: INTERMOT Motorcycle Show - Cologne Germany - trip report
« Reply #23 on: October 16, 2014, 09:27:36 pm »
Grrrreat trip report Chris! Awesome pics and excellent commentary. Its been about 2 decades since I was in Germany. Your pics of the Rhine and cityscapes brought back some great memories. As did the picture of your speedometer while cruising the autobahn. I'll have to tell you sometime about the rush I got when I almost got rear-ended at about 110 by a little blue haired lady in a Mercedes sedan. 
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Re: INTERMOT Motorcycle Show - Cologne Germany - trip report
« Reply #24 on: August 03, 2017, 10:36:49 am »
I've started restoring this trip report after losing all the photos to the Photobucket disaster.  I hope to finish part 1 today and maybe even part 2.  I'll just keep plugging away at putting all the photos back.

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Offline Luvmystar

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Re: INTERMOT Motorcycle Show - Cologne Germany - trip report
« Reply #25 on: August 03, 2017, 07:14:08 pm »
Massive undertaking sir.
Marc

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Re: INTERMOT Motorcycle Show - Cologne Germany - trip report
« Reply #26 on: August 03, 2017, 09:18:10 pm »
OK...parts 1 & 2 are done.  More images to come.

To keep interest alive until I'm finished I thought I'd share this photo of a nice Yamaha from the show.

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Offline PAULRIDES

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Re: INTERMOT Motorcycle Show - Cologne Germany - trip report
« Reply #27 on: August 04, 2017, 04:41:24 pm »
I'm getting old and have become out of date. I didn't know they called that Yamaha.
« Last Edit: August 06, 2017, 09:22:05 pm by PAULRIDES »
Ride Country Roads - a lot. :-)

Offline Chris

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Re: INTERMOT Motorcycle Show - Cologne Germany - trip report
« Reply #28 on: August 04, 2017, 10:41:50 pm »
I'm getting old and have out of date. I didn't know they called that Yamaha.


I double checked Paul...Yep...that's a Yamaha.   :21

Here's a closer shot so you can confirm.

Oh, Part 3 is rebuilt...May get Part 4 started tonight.





« Last Edit: August 05, 2017, 04:03:52 am by Chris »
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Offline Luvmystar

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Re: INTERMOT Motorcycle Show - Cologne Germany - trip report
« Reply #29 on: August 05, 2017, 05:44:24 am »
And a very nice example she is. :21
Marc

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