Black Country MAG
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NABD Fund RaisersHelp raise money for the National Association for Bikers with a Disability (NABD):
Moto Challenge UKOn July 10th, Vic set off on a sponsored 3000 mile voyage around the UK.
Read all about it here.
Vic is West Midlands Rep for the NABD and can be contacted here Vic for more information.
All members are invited to write something about themselves or their bikes for their members page. If this doesn't happen, the webmaster reserves the right to make stuff up (you've been warned!)
This Bandit 600 belongs to Vic, and regulary gets him pulled over by the police! Not, as you might imagine for traffic related offences (all BCMAG members are perfectly well behaved on the Queens Highway!), but due to the crutch case attached to the side of the bike. A friend of Vics made it for him, but it looks remarkably like a shotgun case! Click on the first thumbnail image below to see it in it's full glory.
Vic has been stopped quite a few times now - the coppers in question felt a bit daft when they found out what the case was for!
May update 2006 - when he asked me to amend his website info, Vic also promised to send pic and info on his new bike. I've done my bit - it's over to you, now, Vic.
Vic has been true to his word, and today (29th July) I have received the following:
Hi,I'm Vic (also known as "Big Vern") and I've been asked to put together some words about myself for the site. Well, amongst other things, I am the West Midlands rep for the NABD (National Association for Bikers with a Disability) as well my work for MAG.
I've been riding since I can't remember, but I eventually decided to take (and pass) my bike test in 2000. This was mainly because someone said that I wouldn't be able to do it because of my disability (I've got 2 'gammy' legs). This was also the reason I did the HGV and advanced tests, I just hate being told I can't do something! As well as my work for the NABD and MAG, I am also a member of the Time Lords MCC, a national club which is very active in fundraising and social issues. I have plenty of spare time because I was forced to give up work in 1999 when my disability got in the way, a disability I have had since 1982.
As far as my bike owning experience goes, the first bike that I actually bought was a re-sprayed purple 250 Superdream bought off a friend. A 1981 model, that had seen much better days even then. Eventually I upgraded to a 1995, 600 Bandit which was an ideal first big bike to hone my skills on. This was a great bike and I managed to organise it so that loading all my stuff on for rallies was no problem, except for my walking sticks. At first I tried just strapping them to the side, but that proved to be less than satisfactory. Every time I came to use them after a ride they were covered in mud and stuff, so I had my 'shotgun holster' made up. At first I was stopped about 3 times a week by the Police, but they soon got to know what it was for.
Eventually my bad legs made riding the Bandit a pain (literally) so I started to look around for something more suitable. I found my current bike on eBay (not the ideal place to buy a bike) in 2005. It's a Dragstar 1100A Classic. The owner had polished it more than he had ridden it, having only covered 700 dry miles since it was bought new in 2004 and it was in mint condition.
Unfortunately for the bike, I prefer to ride it rather than polish it, so its immaculate condition soon deteriorated. However I have found it to be a perfect bike for me. I can ride it any distance without discomfort and have found that the 1100cc engine pulls like a train. Having been the length and breadth of the country on it, I now intend to cover Europe and beyond as well.
It has had some adaptations and additions from when it was new, but doubtless it will have more changes as time goes on. My wants for it so far are a better set of panniers (preferably hard and lockable), doing away with the pillion seat (no-one wants to ride with me for some reason!), and increasing its luggage carrying capacity. I also have some plans for some carb and engine changes as well.
This means I have a shopping list as long as my arms for it, so I'm waiting for a lottery win to finish it all.
Unfortunately I had an ultimatum off my wife when I bought the Dragstar - 2 of the bikes had to go. So the old Superdream (which by now was a rusting hulk in the corner of the garage) and the Bandit had to go, but at least they went to good homes.
I ride it as often as I can, wherever I can,
and I am often attending rallies and events both in the Midlands and elsewhere,
so if you see me about, come up and say hello.
Thanks for the words and pictures, Vic. At least this is one page brought up to date (and we won't be looking for you on a bike you no longer own - unlike some members!).
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