....... THE CLUB HISTORY PAGE .......
(photo above posted for Thumper Thursday 08-17-17 and 08-24-17)
Here we are, awaiting another lunch at a ThumperCafe back in 1915 or so ... well, it could be so, all we'd need to do is turn back the clock a few decades, right? I love this shot. It was a photo on the wall at the Route 66 Motorcycle Museum in Miami, Oklahoma, the same place where last week's featured Military Royal Enfield is housed. Pay this place a visit should you be near Miami, OK. when you are in the area at the upcoming ThumperCafes in MO. - AR. - OK.
Visit the Event Page for more information about these ThumperCafe events.
(from a photo post featured on 08-10-17) 1953 MILITARY ROYAL ENFIELD BULLET ... THIS UNRESTORED BEAUTY IS ON DISPLAY AT THE ROUTE 66 MOTORCYCLE MUSEUM IN MIAMI, OKLAHOMA. The Smith's Made in England Chronometric Speedometer is in Miles Per Hour and shows a collective number of 17,950 miles. At a quick glance, this machine appears to be very similar to today's Royal Enfield Bullet models, HOWEVER, take note of the lack of a rear suspension system. It's a "hard tail" as that was the way 1953 model Royal Enfields were built. With that in mind, both saddles are of a sprung design to afford the riders a more supple ride. A very impressive piece...
******************************************************************* post below from 07-27-17)***********************
Hello FSSNOC ...
300 vs. 500 What I'm about to write is probably no surprise. The 500 is everything the 300 isn't, or one could say, the 300 is everything the 500 isn't.
Now that I've written the conclusion, I will attempt to qualify the differences. I was of the mindset that the 500 would be the same as the 300 with more power. More power, it does have. Its seating position is about the same. The gas mileage is just a bit worse than the 300. Initial handling around the garage is noticeably heavier. For my use, pushing it on and off the lift, it is more difficult.
The 500 handles on the curves pretty well but the 300 is noticeably better, probably due to the difference in weight and wheelbase. Maintenance, oil changes, etc, is about the same with the 500 as with the 300. The extra power of the 500 is nice for traveling down the highway, however, the 300 is much more fun to ride.
I do like the 500. For me, this was a great lesson in what handling in a motorcycle means. See you all in a few weeks at the ThumperCafes!
Bob Alumbaugh, #5331 (AZ.)
A little background for the comparison above might be in order here. Bob has ridden motorcycles on and off since his youthful years, and we won't comment on how long ago that has been ... ha! ha! Anyway, a couple of years ago, Bob decides to get back into the sport. His first purchase was a Honda CB300F. At that time, Bob lived about an hour away from ThumperVille and he still had family here so he began to show-up in town and on the Honda on a regular basis. We enjoyed many hours of riding about the many miles of blacktop rural roads in the area.
One day Bob decided to trade the Honda CB300F in at his local dealer for a Honda CBR300R. He had enjoyed the bright red CB300F but he was absolutely smitten with the orange beauty that you see in the masthead photo above. In a relatively short period of time, the odometer read 11,000 plus miles. All was well...
In the meantime, Bob had joined FSSNOC and we started making plans to do the trip out to Washington state for that year's ThumperCafe-West event. We did that ride and, of course, we had a blast! It was a major trip for Bob as he had previously only ventured out a state or two, and this was all the way to Washington, even up into British Columbia, Canada. Bob called it his "trip of a lifetime!"
Sometime after our trip, Bob put his home on the market, and "boom", it sold ... he had 30 days to relocate. He decided to move to Arizona but time was of the essence. The lovely orange Honda above was sold back to the understanding dealer. With his worldly "stuff" packed, Bob moved to the great southwest ... and the orange CBR300R was history.
What? No motorcycle? How would that work? Once settled and with just a wee bit of spare time on his hands, Bob begins to shop. His choice was to go back to what he knew, the Honda 300 ... only this time he went with the 500cc version, hence the comparison above...
Thanks, Bob ... for the details above. As the miles add-up, you'll know even more about the comparo between the Honda CBR300R and your new Honda CBR500R. Keep us posted ... oops, I can't say "Keep On Thumpin" 'cause that Honda CBR500R is a twin...
Oh well ... see you in August, Bob! Ride safely, my friend... - #000.
HISTORY... I hated it in school but love it now. Go figure?
It all started late in 1985, this idea of a club for Four-Stroke Single Cylinder Motorcycle Owners.
I was riding a brand new factory-fresh Honda XL600R ... a red, white, and blue 600cc Single with an advertised dry weight of 295 pounds. It sported 17" gold rims on both ends shod with fat (for the day) sticky Metzler street tires, Magura clip-on stubby handlebars installed upside down, and a sporty low-mount front fender off a Honda Interceptor ... a "Motard" by today's definition and I was years ahead of the "Motard Movement" of modern times.
Friends told me I ruined a perfectly good dirt bike, I contended that I had created a sub-300 pound street/road bike with a 600cc Single Cylinder ("Thumper") motor.
William Least Heat-Moon, author of BLUE HIGHWAYS, begins that particular book with a statement that said, "Beware of thoughts that come in the night." ... The idea of a Thumper Club came to me in that very fashion. I remember the dream well, and that it came to me in that half-awake, half-asleep time in the early morning hours when all thoughts make sense and there are no impossibilities.
It was while in this euphoric mood mode that I decided to assimilate a nationwide coalition of motorcyclists who shared that same strange, almost unexplainable fancy for the Four-Stroke Single Cylinder Motorcycle. Not content with that basic decision, I continued on to make the major decision of committing $5,000 (yet to be earned!) and/or three years of my time to this project. Now, at this point, I'm tossing and turning, unable to go back to sleep, yet not really willing to wake-up, probably fearing that my inspiration wouldn't endure the harsh reality of daylight! Finally I decide to proceed, but with the theory that I'd evaluate my progress at the point where either the three years or the 5,000 bucks ran out, whichever happened first. With that truce in mind, I happily drifted off into a deep sleep, awakening in the morning refreshed.
My feet had hardly hit the floor before I had a plan of action. The club would be called the FOUR-STROKE SINGLES NATIONAL OWNERS CLUB, the now-familiar "FSSNOC" acronym (pronounced Fizz-Knock or the letters F - S - S - N - O - C) was an almost instant by-product of the lengthy title.
Our first member, a definite mile-marker in any club's history, wasn't to happen until April of the next year, 1986. I had related my dreams and plans to a fellow worker at the Honda-Yamaha motorcycle shop where we both worked. His reaction was something like, "Uhhhh, yeah, that's really cool. Well, I better get back to work ..." and he walked away. Not what I wanted to see and hear! Later that same day, he approached me with his folded fist extended, knuckles-up, and, grinning, said, "Go for it! Count me in. I'll be member number one, here's my twenty bucks!" WELCOME TO THE CLUB, FSSNOC #001...
Incidentally, that is how I came to be known as FSSNOC #000, or "Triple Zip" as a fellow member later labeled me.
After that rather heady moment of getting the first member, our club grew at an amazingly slow rate. The $5000 went at an alarming rate. I remember spending $680 for an ad in three issues of CYCLE magazine and realizing only two memberships. That was a heart-breaker! I quickly learned to beg for cheaper rates in those publications that would listen and react with compassion.
May 15, 1986 ... a RED LETTER date! We received an application for membership from Washington state, he became our first Out-Of-State member. I was ecstatic! He remains an enthusiastic member to this day.
January 1, 1987 ... After our first year in "business", we had signed on 103 Thumper enthusiasts! In July of that first year, we had introduced the "FSSNOC", our club newsletter. Issue #1 was a 10 page, 8 x 11 inch leaflet featuring an XT250 Yamaha on the cover. I remember pricking my fingers repeatedly with those metal staples that held these simple publications together ... ahhhh, good stuff! (Back Issues are available to club-members at 4 issues for $20, post paid by the club.)
In the Summer of 1987, our newsletter was renamed THUMPER NEWS to more closely reflect our purpose and its content. In 1988, we started the C A M List, meaning Contact Another Member. This was a list of members who wanted to be available to other members for social and service purposes.
THUMPER NEWS has grown from that ten page leaflet to a magazine style publication suitable for your personal library or coffee table. Page count is usually 24 to 32 pages featuring want ads, trip stories, road tests, event schedules, all put together in a warm vintage style ... and thankfully, no more nasty staples!
Rallies and Events ... started in 1986 and continue as we speak, see the Events Section of this website. To date FSSNOC has hosted events, now called "ThumperCafes" throughout the continental USA, in addition to a gathering in Tok, Alaska in 2001 and two tours of Old Mexico in '91 & '92.
Since those tentative days in 1986, we've enjoyed serving thousands of thumper enthusiasts, many of which remain in the club today ... may we add you to our list of members?
I hope you've enjoyed this mini-version of the early years of FSSNOC growth and activity. The important thing to remember is ... we wouldn't be here today without the support and contributions of those early members, many who are still active participants in the club to this day. Let me use this opportunity to express our heartfelt THANKS to all those members who have supported our club through the years. Little did I know that the "thought that came in the night" would have such an impact on my life and on the lives of our members. In light of that, my comment would be...
"Listen to ... and Live Your Dreams!" Keep On Thumpin', ...Jack Robinson, FSSNOC #000 - Director
....this concludes our Club History Page. Please visit our other pages....