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SoCal Trip, pt.1, California, USA

SoCal Trip, pt.1, California, USA

Ain't it great when you have the time to see some old friends on the way to a bike show. The other day we went to the Palm Springs Paradies Road Show, in the state of California, USA. SoCal is crammed with choppers and chopper builders, and who knows, you might even meet people who invite you over to their shop.

Anyway, the first stop was yellow. Now, what place in California is yellow to the max? Right, it's Mooneyes in Santa Fe Springs. They had been kind enough to let us send them some brand new parts over from Europe. Among them the Cannonball Stealth Starter electric start system for vintage Big Twins, new engine cases and new 4.00-18 Bates Baja tires, stuff we wanted to exhibit at the show. Big thanks for the support, Shige san and Chico!

Next waypoint on our GPS was San Marcos, near San Diego.

It's the lair of Vee Choppers, head honcho Arie Vanschyndel, who ever since Born Free 7 came to international fame with his exquisite Panhead chop. He gave us a tour of his upcoming projects and we gave him a private car boot preview of the goodies we had brought for the Paradise Road Show. Which diverted us into a discussion about the merits of Bates Baja tires, scramblers and the (debatable) need for choppers to be offroad capable.

Talking about offroad capabilites: loads of these were apparent in Joshua Tree Park, one of the great natural spectacles in the area. Though we did bring extra time, we didn't have enough of it to appreciate the park properly, just managed to snap a few rocks and cacti driving thru. But, it's not far from here to Expensive Trash of Martin McLaughlin und Machi Kosaka, who not only had shown some awesome chopper style at the Paradise show: Machi showed us a few two-wheeled gems tucked away in their garage over in San Jacinto. Plus a load of promising parts, that may, or may not, develop into yet more great bikes. If you have a lot of time and patience. Which we didn't have, regrettably. But, we'll see the stuff at the next Born Free, we reckon.

To be continued …