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About Coolbreeze

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About Coolbreeze
I learned to ride on my brother's '47 Chief on dirt farm roads in western Illinois ~9 miles from the birth place of Wyatt Earp. It was left hand throttle and right hand shift. In 1966, I found a '56 H-D KHK ex flat track racer in a shed and bought it for $200. Less than 2 years later, I found myself ground up under the KHK. I sold the damaged bike to my roommate for $100 in '68 and bought a '48 Chief with a seized engine from Jim Morrison* that spring for $40.

In 1970, my girlfriend made a derogatory comment about my old bike. I told her, "Hey, I've had the bike longer than I've had you. Don't ever ask me to make a choice. To her credit, she never has. I still have that girlfriend and the bike!

The Indian burned under me at speed in 1970. It took until 1973 to get it running again. The engine seized big time in 1975; so, I saved some money and bought a '64 BMW R69S -- and stored the Chief. After getting fed up with difficulty starting my second engine in the R69S, I left it at my brother's motorcycle shop at the end of 1986 and bought a used Moto Guzzi V65Sp from him.

Somewhere in the late 1990s, I bought the bike I should have had in high school: a 1960 Harley CH. I left it with a private shop with instructions on how I wanted it configured and with the admonition that I did not want it back until I could start it easily. It is still there!

After the start of the new millennium, I re-joined AMCA, helped form Vintage Iron Riders MC, and bought another '56 KHK and an Indian 841. Also, a lady I knew gave me her late husband's partially complete 1966 Honda "Touring Benly" (aka "150 Dream).

So, my tally is now 7 bikes. The CH still is a bear to start. The KHK needs a new battery. The Chief needs a head gasket replaced. The 841 has new gears on order. The V65Sp runs, but needs a new coil that I have for it. The BMW is still hard to start. That leaves the Honda. What I tell people is, "It is bit rough, but it is all there. Everything works, and it starts on the first kick. I wish I could say the same thing about me!"

* Now, it could have been Jim Morrison from the Doors or it could have been a farm kid from Berwick, IL named Jim Morrision; but that is my story.
Central Illinois
Sports cars, motorcycles (of course), camping, Scouting, history / genealogy
farmer / lawyer


George Tinkham
Vintage Iron Riders, AMCA, AMA, ABATE of Illinois, MRF, Springfield Milers BMW MC
'56 H-D KHK
'60 H-D CH
'42 Indian 841
'48 Chief
1 each of German (R69S), Italian (V65Sp), & Japanese (150 Touring Benly)


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