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Essex Advanced Motorcyclist Group

August 2020

Welcome to T.U.G. Dear Members, Although direct training and testing have resumed, all other normal EAMG activities are still tucked away at the back of the fridge. Once again this has been a nightmare edition of T.U.G. to produce. You will read rather more of the exquisite prose crafted by your beloved editor than is strictly desirable, but in the absence of other activities and contributions there is little choice. Please send me something so that the October issue is less of a one man band. We currently have 3 editions of T.U.G. waiting to be printed and distributed so when normality returns (if it ever does) there be a bumper crop to read. As to what I have been doing personally during lockdown and restriction; as little as possible! Chris

Chairman’s Piece


Test Passes


Membership Info


New Members


Training Team News


Old This & That …


Inflating Tyres


Membership Form


Dates for the Diary?


Old Picture Gallery


Milton Keynes!


Old Event Report


Member Profile


Further Training


Editor (TUG@eamg.org.uk)

What’s happening next?

Log into www.eamg.org.uk, then

Runs and Rides Forum

And follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

Essex Advanced Motorcyclist Group Promoting Excellence in Motorcycling Since 1982

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I hope you are all keeping well and getting used to the new normal. It’s been great to see some bikes out on the road in small groups, and Tony Seaman organising some rides. Writtle have been in touch asking our requirements going forward and now the restaurants and pubs are opening I hope we will be able to make some arrangements with Channels soon. I will be making arrangements to have virtual meetings with committee and observers in the coming week or two and see what ideas we can come up with a view to get some activities going while keeping to government guidelines. Personally after 2 month of furlough my part-time job has become almost full time. I work in a testing centre and the bulk of our testing is DVSA theory tests and CSCS construction site health and safety. We have had to reduce the testing stations from 12 to 7 seats and to try to cover the normal demand we are open 7 days with some 12 hour days. Along with a round of golf a week I don’t seem to have time for much else. Please feel free to use the forum or Facebook to post any events or


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rides you want to organise but to maintain our reputation please continue to observe social distancing and guidelines and not ride in groups of more than 6. Anything organised will not be classed as official ride so you will be responsible for organisation and any repercussions.

It seems like the summer is slipping by I do hope we can all meet up again soon. Hoping you and your loved ones stay safe. Jill

Editor: Please note that while Training, Testing and FMTs have started again, many normal EAMG activities, Group Nights, AGTs, Rides etc. , are at time of writing still suspended until the current restrictions are relaxed. The situation is fluid so please keep an eye open for developments.

Essex Advanced Motorcyclist Group Promoting Excellence in Motorcycling Since 1982

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Pandemic Place Filler




Jaques de Klerk

Brian Rickerby

25th July 2020 RoSPA Gold (re-test)

30th July 2020 RoSPA Gold (re-test)

Examiner: John Taylor

Observer: Mick Hewitt & Joe Johal Examiner: Mick Jones

Steve Page

Nick Franklin

16th July 2020 RoSPA Gold

2nd July 2020 RoSPA Gold

Observer Jill Winn Examiner: Mick Jones

Observer: Mick Heitt & Joe Johal Examiner: JMick Jones

Jill Winn 26th June 2020 RoSPA Gold (re-test)

Examiner: John Taylor

John Herring

Stephen Fletcher

24th June 2020 RoSPA Silver

15th July 2020 RoSPA Silver

Observer: Graham Cooper Examiner: Mark Anderson

Observer: John Tullett Examiner: Mick Jones

Terry Sullivan

Phil Jones

24th May 2020 EAMG Observer Assessor: Chris Reed

6th July 2020 EAMG Observer (re-test) Assessor: Richard Parker

Jaques de Klerk 12th October 2019 EAMG Observer (re-test) Assessor: John Tullett

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Membership Information Dear Members & Prospective Members, The membership form is on the website or page 22 if you wish to join or if you are renewing. Also please remember to spread the word about EAMG, recommendation is such a valuable tool and current members are always the best advocates for what a good group this is. The membership appears to dip in the first quarter because renewals have not all been made promptly! The membership figures are not currently being updated

Membership Fees for 2020 

New Associate Members


Associate Member Renewal


Full Member Renewal


Social Member


Full Member Training


(For more information on Full Member Training see page 42) This is in addition to the Full Member Fee















Essex Advanced Motorcyclist Group Promoting Excellence in Motorcycling Since 1982

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New Members

Unsurprisingly, no details of new members have been received.


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Essex Advanced Motorcyclist Group Promoting Excellence in Motorcycling Since 1982

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Coronavirus While we are a long way from being " back to normal" , the recent easing of Coronavirus restrictions has allowed the resumption of some training activities.

June Observer Meeting The Observer meeting on 10th June was held remotely via Z oom to formulate EAMG's 'Start Up Plan'. The full range of training activities were discussed and the following conclusions were reached: ¡

1-to-1 Training - To resume from 15th June with social distancing in mind. Observers will contact their trainees to establish whether they are happy to resume training and check memberships have been renewed. Radios will not be used, ride reports will be sent via email or other means. Observers will check toilet facilities are available en-route prior to ride if considered necessary. Observee to be advised to take own drink and food if required.


Associate Member Training / Full Member Training (26th July) This ride will proceed, subject to social distancing, taking own


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food & drink, etc. At the time of writing this column six Full members are booked to attend. ·

Associate Group Training (AGT) - July's AGT would not take place. A decision relating to August's event will be taken nearer the time. Should Government guidelines permit this event to proceed, we will meet at an outside venue and allocate Observers to Associates and Full members signed up for FTFM as usual. There will be no talk and no full member social ride.


Slow Riding Day (20th September) - The feasibility of proceeding with this event will be discussed at August's Observer meeting.


Full / Associate / Midweek Social Rides - All suspended for the time being. This decision will be reviewed at the next Committee and Observer meetings.

RoSPA & IAM Tests RoSPA and 15th June.

the IAM





Training Team Update I am pleased to confirm that Terry Sullivan has returned to active observing and successfully passed his recent Observer test with Chris Reed.

Essex Advanced Motorcyclist Group Promoting Excellence in Motorcycling Since 1982

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Online Training Feedback Form I would like to thank Andy Smith and Brain Rickerby for becoming the second and third Group members to provide feedback via the new Online Training Feedback facility (which can be accessed via the home page of EAMG's website http: / / www.eamg.org.uk/ ). Andy's comments for Paul Carden included " Paul has an easy friendly manner and communicates ideas, riding concepts and areas for

improvement very well. This is my second observed ride and we both feel good progress is being made from 1st to 2nd. " .

Brian's comments for Mick Hewitt & Joe Johal were " Just passed my ROSPA gold re-test. Went out with Mick and Joe prior to the retest and found their advice and comments invaluable" .

---ooo0ooo--Should any members have any training related queries then please contact me via e-mail to training@eamg.org.uk , or on 07570 992801 or speak to the most relevant member of the Training Team.


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Old This and That Dave Iszard This article first appeared in TUG (as it was then before Woke culture sprinkled it with dots) in October 2007. It is a pleasure to have the excuse to reprint some of Dave’s pieces.

I’ve been looking for a reasonable Honda CB500 as a winter bike and recently found one in Kent. The ad read, very good condition, one careful owner from new so I went for a look. I assume the VGC excluded the totally worn out fork legs, damaged and blocked radiator, cracked plastics, front pads down to the metal, rear light hanging off, completely knackered chain and sprockets, non functioning thermostat switch and totally filthy. Apart from that it was ok??? So I bought it (at my price not his). Fortunately the engine and gearbox were sweet and after replacing all the worn out parts, with genuine Honda parts I might add, it is beginning to look ‘fit’ again but for the money I spent I could have bought a ready to ride example. Then again it wouldn’t have had all those new parts on, would it? Where does ‘very good condition’ fit in you may ask and ‘one careful owner’. Well VGC didn’t come in to it. One careful owner - - - well maybe. Perhaps he was very careful in his general approach to life or perhaps he was very careful when spending money. Caring for his bike, oh no! It was a typing error I’m sure, it should have read ‘one careless owner’. The worn out fork legs had repeatedly pumped out all the oil over the bike (keeping the rust at bay) and then all the road dirt had stuck to the oil creating a cake layer (blocking the rad). Presumably not being able to keep oil in the forks, he filled them with grease, the fork seals not being able to keep oil in, also wouldn’t keep the rain ‘out’ so I had fork legs filled with water and grease creating a substance called gloop. - - - Still the hot grips work! And I’ve got AA recovery. Confucius he say, “A fool and his money are soon parted”. I’ve attended a few social rides lately and they have been most enjoyable. Chris Johnson lead one from the August AGT and on the briefing I understood him to say,” We will be having breakfast at The Hard Times café and then skirt around Bury St Edmunds”. How surprised was I when we had breakfast at High Beech and skirted around Bishops Stortford. I suppose I subconsciously wanted to go north.

Essex Advanced Motorcyclist Group Promoting Excellence in Motorcycling Since 1982

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(Editor: I remember this ride. At the briefing Dave did seem to have his mind set on higher things). A good ride all the same but he lead us through a puddle on a route that was otherwise dry. By the smell, it was either a pond or a cesspool being pumped out and I arrived home with splashes of green grunge up the bike. Chris, must try harder. If Paul Steggles and the amazing VFR had been with us I’m sure legal action would have followed. While on the subject of Chris I have observed that rides which he leads are generally good, whereas rides where he is led are another story. On the Seven Counties ride we all stopped to regroup in a lay-by (26 bikes) but Chris didn’t notice us, he seemed to be transfixed with a scooter club we had become entwined with and followed through with them. Perhaps he was trying to tell us something. Anyway, I think Chris is probably a leader of men rather than a led man. Not forgetting Guy’s charity ride to Cambridge of which I only did half, a Rolling Stones concert beckoned. A good turnout, good weather and I understand a good collection. I think the kitty stands at about £560 for children’s hospice. It’s good to see the girls in the group riding their own bikes notably three ladies, coincidently on Suzuki SV650’s. One such was clearly distraught, considering herself to be out of her depth. Having followed her for a good distance I would say that she was doing well and has nothing to worry about (stick at it missus) unlike a couple of ‘plebs’ on the ride who displayed some dangerous s practices and pissed a lot of people off. Of course not forgetting our Smurf when I mention lady motor cyclists. Where is Sue Saunders these days? Ken tells me they have become grand parents recently so I guess she is knitting instead of riding. Cranes Corner . Well it’s a bit disappointing this month. I expected so much of the of the little Honda turbo on Guys ride because Gary had found some stickers at home and decorated the CB5 increasing its value by £2.50. Just west of Dunmow Gary suffered a ‘twanged’ clutch cable and I never saw him again that day. I understand by a bizarre set of circumstances someone made him a new one just down the road and on a Sunday (luck of the Irish)

Editor: For those who missed the Gary Crane era, he was a prominent character, a very colourful character indeed, in EAMG with a turn of phrase which would make a sailor blush.


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Inflating Tyres Chris Johnson Since we are good little Advanced Riders we always check our tyre pressures before we set out, don't we? How do we check them? We use a tyre gauge! When the pressures are not right, and they seldom are due to leakage, changed temperature, and the fact that just measuring the pressure can lead to air loss, how do we inflate them? Using a pump, of course! The delightful simplicity of this is unfortunately coloured by the reality of motorcycle wheels. They are crowded. You have a couple of beefy discs at the front and a single disc and a large chain and sprocket at the rear. The space around the valve stem is restricted. Anything you press onto it, for pumping or measuring purposes, has to seat reliably and be applied and removed quickly and cleanly. This immediately restricts your choices. Measuring Pressure The free-standing gauge requirements are that it can fit onto the valve stem easily, that it be small enough to take with you for the inevitable punctures, and that it be accurate, An old school 'pencil' style gauge will satisfy the first two requirements but, with any mechanical gauge, the accuracy is suspect. A digital gauge self-calibrates when you turn it on and they are cheap and accurate. I favour a tiny keychain blob to take with me, and a trusty Halfords hand held unit which has the nozzle for the valve stem at right angles to the body of the gauge so that even this fumble-fingered Fred can apply and release it fairly cleanly. Battery has lasted nearly 18 years now and it is still going strong. If you have a gauge on your airline inflator gun or footpump then it will normally be a mechanical dial unit, and thus not be accurate or, even worse, consistent. If you knew it always read 10% high then it might be usable. Essex Advanced Motorcyclist Group Promoting Excellence in Motorcycling Since 1982

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Pumping Up At home I have a compressor in the bike shed, so in principle I should have an easy life. Turn on, take line to bike, pump up, check pressure and adjust, repeat on other wheel. The delightful simplicity of this is rather spoiled by the fact that until recently I only had tyre inflation accessories with a Type 1 or 2 connector. Type 1 would not seat reliably and Type 2 was difficult to seat, causing considerable pressure loss in the process, and equally difficult to unseat without undoing all your good work, This meant that you had to overpressure the tyre considerably and then laboriously bring it down to the correct pressure hiss by cautious hiss. Recently I have managed to buy an inflator accessory with a type 3 connector, which will undoubtedly make life much simpler but, since I am not riding the bike during the pandemic, I have had little joy from it so far. Another feature of my compressor is that from day one the motor pressure cut-off has not worked, so that every minute or so the pressure relief valve opens to emit what sounds like an explosively noisy fart, which makes me jump even though I know it is coming.. The stalwart for home use has to be the foot pump, which normally features a Type 3 connector, Cheap, reliable, moderately effective and, of course, normally plagued with an inaccurate and inconsistent dial gauge. You know where you are with a foot pump. It is not an ideal place but it is not a bad one. The front tyre pumps up easily, the rear tyre seems to contain a small air-gobbling monster and takes a lot more effort. Very good for getting your circulation going on a cold morning. One advantage of using it as a biker is that you are wearing stout boots so that when, as


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periodically happens, your foot slides off the pump you do not suffer the grazed ankle from the kick-back which you get when using the pump on a car tyre wearing shoes. On The Move This is where it starts to get interesting. A foot pump is too heavy and bulky to take with you unless you have a top box or panniers which are not already grossly overloaded. Furthermore when you get a puncture you are not just topping up by a couple of psi, you have a lot of pumping to do. Let us start with what I consider to be the ideal method; the cheap AA electric compressor. Readily bought at petrol stations (the make may be other than AA) and light and compact enough for underseat storage or a tail pack, these are little Godsends. You do need a 12V outlet on your bike or you are going to have to arrange battery clips and suffer more inconvenience. They are normally fitted with a short hose and what looks like a Type 2 connector, but it is short and screws on so I guess it is a Type 2.5. The good news is that this will chatter away and pump a flat rear tyre up to well over 42psi with no further effort on your part. The bad news is that it takes a devil of a time to do it.. Certainly well over 5 minutes and it feels like 20. With the number of punctures I get mine has become a treasured possession. The next option is a hand pump..(I did also once have a tiny foot pump, but it tended to fall over and broke very quickly). They are very light and compact, have a type 3 connection, and can be double or single action. Do not think that double action will speed up inflation. The major problem with these is that to pump up the rear tyre of a Pan to 42 psi will probably take over a thousand strokes. We do not know for certain because nobody has ever done it! You start merrily enough but after the first hundred strokes the Essex Advanced Motorcyclist Group Promoting Excellence in Motorcycling Since 1982

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tyre has some pressure in it, and each stroke becomes progressively harder. This is why the double action pump is no more effective because you are the limiting factor. Lactic acid builds up, you are in agony, and after 500 strokes your arm is on fire and your hand has cramped to a rigid claw. You massage it until you can pick up a pressure gauge and discover that you have reached a little over 20 psi. At that point you sensibly decide that it is good enough for riding gently to the nearest garage and finding an air line. Do not think that will be the end of your problems. Garage airlines seldom have a Type 3 connector and there are few things more frustrating than, having used up your last coins, having the line time out whilst you are still trying to seat the nozzle. I think on average I have lost more pressure using garage airlines than ever I have put in. One approach which many take for inflation after a puncture is to use cartridges of CO2 gas, obtainable in 16g or 22g sizes. These are admirably compact, and may be your only option if you have a sportsbike with limited underseat storage, When I used them I had a simple inline connector which meant the cylinders were affected by the wheel congestion., but I see they are now normally distributed with a right angle connector with built in control tap which should make life easier. Once the cylinder starts filling the tyre its temperature drops to about -40C, so unless you are wearing gloves or being very careful you stand a sporting chance of bits of you freezing to it. I also found that I needed at least 2 of the larger cylinders to get a working pressure in the tyre. With the new connector type, if I didn't have my trusty AA pump, I might be tempted to try these again, particularly if I ever put the Blade back on the road.. The final approach is one which I view with grave suspicion. You can buy bulky cans containing a gunk which is supposed to both seal and inflate. Not an option if your bike lacks storage space. My experience has been entirely (Continued on page 30)


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Please note that all events in the Diary are now suspended until further notice February Sunday, 2nd Tuesday, 4th Sunday, 9th Sunday, 23rd

Richard's Full Member Ride Group Night - AGM Associate Group Training (AGT) Mick & Alan’s Associate/Member Ride

Sunday, 1st Tuesday, 3rd Sunday, 8th Sunday, 15th Sunday, 22nd Sunday, 29th

Richard's Full Member Ride Group Night— Triumph Lings? Associate Group Training (AGT) Mick & Alan’s Associate/Member Ride Observer Peer to Peer Ride (2001) Associate/Full Member Training (AMT/FMT 2001)

Sunday, 5th Tuesday, 7th Saturday, 11th Sunday, 12th Tuesday, 21st Sunday, 26th

Richard's Full Member Ride Group Night Super Sausage Run Associate Group Training (AGT) Bob's Midweek Ride - TBC Mick & Alan’s Associate/Member Ride

Sunday, 3rd Tuesday, 5th Sunday, 10th Sunday, ??? Sunday, 17th Tuesday, 19th Sunday, 24th Sunday, 31st

Richard's Full Member Ride Group Night — KTM Associate Group Training (AGT) Essex Motorcycle Show, North Weald Observer Peer to Peer Ride (2002) Bob's Midweek Ride - TBC Associate/Full Member Training (AMT/FMT 2002) Mick & Alan’s Associate/Member Ride

Tuesday, 2nd Sunday, 7th Sunday, 14th Sunday, 14th Tuesday, 16th Sunday, 28th

Group Night Associate Group Training (AGT) Slow Riding Day Richard's Full Member Ride Bob's Midweek Ride - TBC Mick & Alan’s Associate/Member Ride

Sunday, ?5?th Sunday, 5th

Maldon Motor Show Richard's Full Member Ride





Diary 20 20





Richard's Full Member Ride Group Night Associate Group Training (AGT) Mick & Alan’s Associate/Member Ride Bob's Midweek Ride - TBC Audrey & John's Cotswolds Ride (to be confirmed)

Group Night Associate Group Training (AGT) Essex Air Ambulance Run/Show Richard's Full Member Ride Mick & Alan’s Associate/Member Ride Bob's Midweek Ride - TBC Slow Riding Day Observer Peer to Peer Ride (2004) Copdock Show Richard's Full Member Ride Group Night Associate Group Training (AGT) Associate/Full Member Training (AMT/FMT 2004) Bob's Midweek Ride - TBC Mick & Alan’s Associate/Member Ride Richard's Full Member Ride Group Night Associate Group Training (AGT) Bob's Midweek Ride - TBC Mick & Alan’s Associate/Member Ride Group Night - Xmas Quiz Associate Group Training (AGT) Richard's Full Member Ride Mick & Alan’s Associate/Member Ride

Diary 20 20

Sunday, 2nd Tuesday, 4th Sunday, 9th Sunday, 16th Tuesday, 18th Sunday, 23rd September Tuesday, 1st Sunday, 6th Sunday, 13th Sunday, 13th Sunday, 13th Tuesday, 15th Sunday, 20th Sunday, 27th October Sunday, 4th Sunday, 4th Tuesday, 6th Sunday, 11th Sunday, 18th Tuesday, 20th Sunday, 25th November Sunday, 1st Tuesday, 3rd Sunday, 8th Tuesday, 17th Sunday, 22nd December Tuesday, 1st Sunday, 6th Sunday, 13th Sunday, 20th

Group Night Associate Group Training (AGT) Observer Peer to Peer Ride (2003) Bob's Midweek Ride - TBC Mick & Alan’s Associate/Member Ride Associate/Full Member Training (AMT/FMT 2003)

Group Nigh ts @ 19 : 30 , AGTs @ 9 : 15 am

Tuesday, 7th Sunday, 12th Sunday, 19th Tuesday, 21st Sunday, 26th Sunday, 26th

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Picture Gallery ■ Picture Gallery ■ Ol


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ld Pictures ■ 20 0 7 ■ Picture Gallery

Essex Advanced Motorcyclist Group Promoting Excellence in Motorcycling Since 1982

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negative; starting nearly 50 years ago when I used it on a tubed rear tyre (remember those?). Not only did it inflate poorly but the only sealing it did was to the valve, which it clogged up completely. That was a long walk home. Much more recently, on one of the Tipper runs to the Cotswalds, I managed to get simultaneously one major and two minor unsuspected punctures. Thanks to the unsuspected ones the puncture repair never seemed to work and eventually, in desperation, Geoff Preston produced one of these cans. We used it as well as pumping the tyre up to pressure. I rode with this whilst keeping a close eye on the TPMS readings. The tyre did not seem to lose pressure, in fact it slowly and inexorably started rising, and I watched with increasing nervousness as it rose to well over 50psi.before gradually starting to decline again. The rest of the journey home involved stopping every few miles to top up the tyre so I suppose the gunk, even if it failed to seal, at least gave me a 20 mile respite from this. On the only other occasion on a run when I have seen it used it failed to seal, but dribbled out of the puncture to create the sickest looking rear tyre it has been my misfortune to encounter. Other people may have had happier experiences, but I can only report mine. It occurs to me that there is one further possibility for handling punctures. Ensure that you are riding with John Tipper. That guy is an absolute ace at fixing them and, for you, this is the most effective, reliable, and trouble -free solution!

Essex Advanced Motorcyclist Group Promoting Excellence in Motorcycling Since 1982

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Milton Keynes—An Alternative Approach Chris Johnson (again) Editor: This article appeared in the June 2004 issue of TUG. Unfortunately I cannot find the GPS track image it refers to. This is actually no disadvantage, since it leaves you in a fog of geographical uncertainty, which is what this article is really about. ‘Stuart’ is Stuart Daniels, who re-joined EAMG not that long ago. It was Easter Saturday, and the first social ride of the year; Chris & Gary's Super Sausage Run. It was also the first anniversary of the incident which led to my being publicly 'outed' by Chris Reed; I refer, of course, to my conspicuous lack of any significant navigational skills. I was determined that this year would be different. Firstly, I now carry a GPS mapping receiver (Editor: a primitive precursor of the SatNav) which shows exactly where one is with astonishing accuracy. Unfortunately the route for the ride was not announced beforehand so I couldn't program it into the unit and thus avoid the major weakness of GPS - knowing where you are only helps if you know where you ought to be. Secondly, I attached myself to Stuart's group. I have had great respect for him since the Fish & Chip run last year; this was a man who was not afraid to lay down a string of markers every ten yards on difficult intersections, block off roundabout exits with borrowed traffic cones etc. etc. He also plainly has great strength of character since his smile remained in place when he saw me drift over to his group, and his reflex flinch was almost imperceptible. The pre-ride briefing was good. Apparently the only real problem might be at Milton Keynes. We were given full instructions which, on entering the left ear, encountered no significant obstacle and exited promptly from the right one, leaving only an echo which said that you turned left at a roundabout and then turned right at another one signposted A5. Since Milton Keynes appears to have been designed by someone who had a childhood fixation with spaghetti hoops, and consists of innumerable feaEssex Advanced Motorcyclist Group Promoting Excellence in Motorcycling Since 1982

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tureless roundabouts, I was going to be heavily dependent on good use of markers. The ride started. What can I say about it? We had motorcycles, there were roads, we rode along them. All went well until Milton Keynes. In retrospect I know exactly what happened then, because the GPS unit tracks the route you take. There may, or may not, be a picture of the GPS route map attached to this article and it may, or may not, be legible. If it is, then we should have come up from the south at the right of the picture to roundabout A, turned left there, proceeded westwards until roundabout H, and then turned right towards the A5. The reality was somewhat different. At roundabout A the rider in front of me turned right with great selfassurance. This puzzled me slightly, since I felt sure that the first turn should have been to the left, but there was no marker before the roundabout and I was not going to strike out alone this year. His confidence seemed to evaporate fairly rapidly, and after a few hundred yards he stopped, made a U-turn, and we rode back ahead across roundabout A. Sure enough, on the exit road was a very bored marker who appeared to have been reduced to counting the number of dead insects on her(?) machine. With confidence restored we reached the next roundabout B, at which point the guy ahead got an attack of Star Trek bravado and, deciding to boldly go where no man had gone before, turned left. Those of us less familiar with voyages into uncharted Deep Space followed with some misgivings. At the next roundabout, undoubtedly reacting to long-range sensor detection of a Klingon battle cruiser, he made a diversion right, turned left at the following roundabout to resume a parallel course out of alien sensor range, and then suffered an apparent warp core failure and came to a halt at point C. Our splinter group consisted of only 3 bikes, the leading Trekkie, a couple on something agricultural with a bulgy tank, and myself. A lively discussion ensued. I produced the GPS unit and could show the others exactly where we were; heading south from a roundabout at Milton Keynes. For some unaccountable reason this information was not received with the awe and respect which I had expected; the others feeling that all it told them was that we were lost, and they knew that anyway! The couple assumed command, the Trekkie having been temporarily unmanned by failure, and I have such a


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terrible reputation that nobody would trust me to lead them to the beer at a brewery piss-up. The plan was to re-trace our steps and hope to encounter a scouting and rescue mission from the main group. They did a good job on getting us back to roundabout B, but then carried on north to point D. The couple stopped, had an animated discussion between themselves which I suspect I should be grateful for not hearing, and then it was a U-turn and back to our old friend roundabout B again. There we turned right and were actually back on the correct route again, although we did not know it. After that everything went fine until point E, where the couple experienced what even the charitable would describe as an inexplicable loss of bottle. We backtracked to roundabout F and turned right to head in the wrong direction once again. The apparent simplicity of the GPS track does not really do justice to the magical mystery tour which we then seemed to follow. I can remember at one point seeing a sign for "A5 Dunstable". A5 was good but was Dunstable north or south of Milton Keynes? We eventually went ahead over roundabout H and were now back on the official route. I would like to say that our problems were over but in fact we chickened out and turned back again a couple of hundred yards short of the Super Sausage CafĂŠ. This, however, was soon sorted out. The rest of the day was, navigationally, without major incident..

Stuart, with the red trimmed jacket, and my Blade in its youth Essex Advanced Motorcyclist Group Promoting Excellence in Motorcycling Since 1982

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Old Events Report Chris Johnson This report appeared in the August 2015 issue of TUG. Nothing special about it, but it seemed fairly typical, especially the weather, and should give you a nice warm familiar feeling. I am due to set out on a 2500 mile bike trip to Scandinavia in a week, so I had intended getting this report in early. There may be no hurry. Editor Colin sent round an email last night to say that he had precisely nothing for TUG, and even if the usual suspects submitted their pieces there would still not be enough for an issue. Since he was off on holiday (again?) next week, unless there was a massive influx of contributions in the next two days TUG would not be appearing until September! I duly dusted off an old, relatively harmless, article which was published in TUG twelve years ago and sent it off to him, and I suppose I now have to create an outstanding report for him as well. No pressure. There was a consistent theme for all the rides during this period; rain. The first of them was Ian Taylor's Richard Replacement Ride to Swaffham on 31st May. Richard was off gallivanting in France at the time. We had eight riders and, with Paula tailing, set off for a first coffee stop at Lakeside near Stowmarket. I have a vague memory of parking the bikes at a pub not far off in order to have more stable ground for them since it was, of course, raining. Fortunately they had an awning outside so we could avoid the scourge of putting our helmets back on with wet hair; something which normally defeats even the best of anti-mist sprays and pinlock inserts. We reached Swaffham without incident and there had lunch at Bridget's, an establishment which had only been open for three weeks. We were crammed into a yard at the back. It is true that there were only eight of us but it was a very small yard. The tables had umbrellas and, providing you kept tucked in over the table and avoided any expansive gestures, you stayed relatively dry. It was merely damp on the way back. I think Andy must have done something truly terrible in a previous incarnation because the poor guy seems to get more than his share of bad luck.


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On this run it was a puncture. It took a while to locate it, but he was then inundated with offers from all who had their own favourite repair outfits with them. Unaccountably passing over my clearly superior Tyre Plugger, he chose something with a name like 'Silly String'. It involved driving a bradawl deep into the tyre, something which on a KTM would result in an impossibleto-fix hole in the spoke sealing belt, and left me feeling quite faint. However the questionable technology did seem to fix the puncture and Andy reported that there was no loss of pressure during the rest of the journey. Various people peeled off at various points as we got closer to Chelmsford, but the official distance of 190 miles for the run was about right. I was just too busy to be able to attend the AGT on 7th June, so the next social ride for me was Richard's run to Melton Mowbray on 28th June. This was the destination which had been postponed from the previous month because it was a long run which really needed dry weather. I was looking forward to this because it was a new destination which promised new roads. Seventeen bikes started, including Richard's day-old BMW S1000XR and Spider's new Versys which, as we waited to set out, was having its tank decorated with bits of colour-clash insulating tape because the connections for the heated grips were scratching it at full lock. By the coffee stop at St Neots we were pretty soaked, and Richard checked to see if we wanted to continue. Five decided to call it a day but the remainder felt that they were not going to get any wetter. This resolute attitude was rewarded by the rain abating as we rode interesting new roads to Melton Mowbray. Lunch there was at a Wetherspoons, and I resisted the temptation to have pie and contented myself with a simple Sunday roast. The sun came out with a vengeance for the journey back and the stop at St Neots contrasted markedly with the journey out. We were sprawled out in the open working on our tans whereas in the

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morning we had been huddled under awnings. I left at Royston to get a shorter journey home, but the total distance must have been close to 250 miles. Geoff acted as back marker and, since he had been unable to get a replacement yellow helmet in time for his recent trip to France, being left as a marker meant you were back to counting bikes and anxiously trying to spot him when the number got critical. A week later on 7th July we had another of Richard's rides; this time to another new destination at Harleston, midway between Bury St Edmunds and Great Yarmouth. This was closer and less radical than Melton. but still a welcome addition to Richard's repertoire. It was actually two rides in one. At Chelmsford initially we had 20 bikes, but the band of very heavy rain which was sweeping northwards reached there before we started, and the ride kept pace with it to give everyone the benefit of a constant soaking. Some gave up at the start and some a little past Finchingfield. One effect of this was that bike-counting when left as marker went badly wrong, and on one occasion I was totally surprised when Geoff 'suddenly' appeared and waited patiently behind me. After the coffee stop at Wally's in Acton only six stout fellows (or masochistic nutters) chose to continue. The moral to be drawn from this is that you should always bring your rain gear with you. I took over as back marker, but with such a small tight group it was largely a formality. We proceeded to Harleston at a pace appropriate to the miserable conditions, but experienced no significant delays until entering the town, where the parade for a rally of female tractor drivers brought us to a standstill. At the designated cafe parking had been reserved for us in the yard. Since the small yard was on a slope and surfaced with a deep layer of very wet gravel getting the bikes in and parked securely was a bit of a challenge. I hate to think how it would have been if the group had stayed at twenty bikes. In the cafe we had a long table in the window reserved for us. It was a clean little cafe, although rather expensive, but it must have been even cleaner after we departed, since under our table we left a small lake which would have needed a lot of mopping up. Everyone joined in to help each other get the bikes back out of the gravel pit.


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Part two of the ride started early into the journey back, because the rain had passed over and the roads dried out very quickly in the sun, allowing a much better pace. By the time we were south of Sudbury it was a very fine day indeed, and some favourite twisty bits could be ridden to get some use out of the edges of the tyres. It was great fun, and the nutters definitely had the best of the day. Total distance covered was 186 miles, and we were very grateful to Richard for keeping the faith and persisting with the ride after Acton. I had an 80th birthday party to attend on 12th June (not my own - I still have a few years to go before that) so I could not attend the AGT. Apparently very few people turned up, so I doubt if there was much of a ride afterwards. That brings us up to date, and this report can be submitted, leaving me time to consider one of life's great dilemmas. Do I have enough meat left on the front tyre for 2,500 miles, or should I get it changed early before I set out? The tyre shop think it should be changed, but they would, wouldn't they? Wind forward one month. Colin did not have enough material for TUG in August, and a three-line whip has now appeared requiring me to pad out the previous submission for publication in September. This I shall dutifully try to do. I did get the tyre changed. After all the faldediddle with the rear I was a bit nervous, but the sealing belt was not disturbed and neither tyre lost any pressure in 2,500 miles. The trip itself was unremarkable; I just let the Satnav guide me on major roads, since the purpose of the visit was to help my son build his new veranda in Linkoping, a couple of hundred kilometres short of Stockholm, and

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not to ride any interesting roads. I took the bike because I wanted to cross the Oresund bridge between Copenhagen and Malmo. I had thought that I would be crossing in Denmark by the Rodby ferry, but the Satnav took me up through Odense and across the Storebaelt bridge, which was an even better one so the journey gave me two bridges for the price of .. two bridges (they have hefty tolls). The journey back was in appalling weather which included hailstorms and flooded motorways. Although Calais was headline news at the time, and I was delayed on the outward journey because striking port workers were making bonfires of old tyres on the main roads, it was very quiet on my return. Then I hit Operation Stack and the trip up from Folkestone took over three hours. I have become a born-again Satnav lover, and have asked mine to marry me. My wife Mary likes them too so she is OK with this. I was back in time for Richard's third 'new destination' run of the year on 2nd August. This was to Bourne in Lincolnshire, a historic market town between Peterborough and Grantham. It would be good to give the sides of the tyres a bit of exercise again, and being able to mount and dismount the bike without having to struggle over the panniers would be a relief (by the end of the trip to Sweden I had lost all shame, and used to reach back to drag my leg over them in a comical series of hops and jerks. The combination of advancing age and short legs is a pitiful thing). The weather was superb and we set out with sixteen bikes. Geoff 'Yellow Peril' Preston acted as back marker. The roads up to the first stop at Chatteris were reasonably familiar. A few made that into a destination and, after sampling the renowned cuisine of the Green Welly, made their own way back. The remainder forged on into territory unknown. Thanks to a major diversion around a closed bridge I think a lot of it was unknown to Richard too! We arrived in Bourne, struggled a bit to find parking, and then piled into Cafe 35 for lunch. It was a pleasant place with a menu varying from the familiar to the exotic. Resisting the temptation to try Lincolnshire specialities such as potatoes, sausage and, because of the famous Lincolnshire Poacher, possibly pheasant. I

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settled on a chicken and sweet chilli salad. Very good. On the return journey even the diversions had diversions, the route got long and complicated and by the time we had belatedly reached the tea stop at Walkers we had covered 195 miles. The group had managed to hold together despite having to loop-the-loop on occasions. I broke off there to be able to take the boring, but familiar, A11/M11 route home and arrive back within a couple of hours of the promised time. I went on, yet another, Bikesafe course on 6th August. Lewisham were giving out vouchers for them and I am a sucker for a freebie. The riding was good, but they are no longer allowed to do any 'teaching' so we got not even the rudiments of roadcraft. The goody bag we got pushed the IAM more strongly than previously, and I suspect they may have something to do with the absence of any formal training, about which the speakers were apologetic. A consequence of this is that when the AGT rolled around on 9th August I did not attend. I felt that, very temporarily, I had had my fill of riding.

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Member Profile Andy Smith When and why did you develop an interest in riding a motorcycle?

Living in rural Northamptonshire bikes meant freedom as we had no public transport. Living close to Silverstone British GP got me hooked, we had BSA Banthams BSA C15 an old Greaves trials bike on the fields and disused Railway lines How old were you when you first rode a bike? Around 15 or 16 I bought a Puch 2 gear Moped I saved up for working in the summer holidays, with the baffels out and air cleaner of it did 50 mph. First proper bike was a Honda CB160 first bike with an electric starter. I had to bet a car for work at 19 but rode with my mates for years after. Bought a Honda CB 125 TWIN in 1986 which I kept fir 20 years, passed my test and bought a Kawasaki er6 F followed a year later with a Z1000 10 years later bought YAMAHA MT10 but Arthritis stopped me riding that so I bought a new KTM SAS 1290. Of the bikes you've ever owned which was your favourite if you had one? I loved my Z1000 it suited me I was at home on her and was so reliable.


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First trip to Europe with my old school friends to Austria I was wringing her neck to keep up and bought the MT10 and did three more trips on that but the riding position did my knee in. I really love the KTM simply the best bike I have ever owned its fast comfortable handles like a dream and the brakes are good If you were given the opportunity to own any bike on the market which would it be? I would like modern Norton Commando. What is your favourite motorcycle gadget?

I know my KTM is loaded with kit but I did not buy it for that but the riding position. I like my Sena 20s Evo coms system so I can play my music whilst riding. I think ABS has saved my arse a few times down the years. Where is your prefered place to ride in the UK? I like country roads North Essex into Suffolk, Cotswolds are great, so is Northamptonshire And Abroad? The Pyrenees were fantastic the Tarn Valley in France Voges Mountains, B500 in Germany If you were offered the opportunity to go on an extended bike tour, who family members aside who would you choose as a riding companion?

My mate Brian is the best all round rider I know, he's just bought an Aprilla RSV4 for his 60th birthday. Trying to keep up with that on the KTM will be Essex Advanced Motorcyclist Group Promoting Excellence in Motorcycling Since 1982

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very interesting. How would you describe to a non-rider the attraction of riding a bike as opposed to driving a car? Biking to me is the ultimate stress relief, on smaller bikes I would ride like a tit as hard and fast as I could until I scared myself, it makes you feel alive, life is too safe generally these days. With bigger bikes it is the sense of sheer freedom, you the bike the road. Its a massive test of skill too

KTM SAS 1290


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Further Training Opportunities for Full Members EAMG FMT & AMT - 2020 1st January 2020 celebrated EAMG’s fifteen years of independence enabling the Group to draw upon the most appropriate riding techniques to meet the training needs of our members, without having to accommodate restrictions imposed by a governing body. With independence, came the responsibility to ensure our training standards progressed and maintained at the highest level. EAMG Observers fulfill a crucial role within the Group. All are required to hold a current RoSPA Gold qualification before they can be considered for observer training. Once qualified, Observers are re-tested internally every two years by one of four Senior Observer Assessors (SOA’s) who, in turn, are re-tested externally every two years by Police Class: 1 riders. Full Members and Associates can therefore be assured that EAMG’s training is of the highest standard. EAMG; ‘Promoting Motorcycling Excellence’.

Full Member Training (FMT) FMT format allows greater focus on many aspects of advanced motorcycling over longer distances on less familiar roads. Make no mistake, passing an advanced motorcycle test is an excellent achievement but it’s only a measure of your riding standard on test day. Riding skills require continued practice to be retained or they will sadly be lost. Associate Member Training (AMT) Similar training courses are now available for Associate Members who may be approaching test standard, have been recommended to apply by their 1 to 1 Observers or those familiar with riding greater distances than covered on a typical Observed ride. Associates will be encouraged to make their most recent Ride Report Forms available to ensure the Observer on the day has the necessary information to identify needs and address any issues that may be apparent.. Ride Format Duration of rides will be circa 200 mls for Full Members and 100-120 mls for Associates. Regular stops, most including refreshments, will include debriefs so that issues identified can be addressed during subsequent legs. We will NOT be riding in one large group. Allocation will usually be on a 2 to 1 basis to avoid continuous Observation. Every effort will be


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made to match riding ability and/or aspirations. Routes will be pre-planned and forwarded to all participants beforehand. Initial briefing will be comprehensive and a full Ride Report Form will be provided.

2020 Events Joining Fees Please note that this program is suspended for the duration of the pandemic! FMT—(£45)

AMT— (£35)

Sunday, July 26th

Sunday, October 18th

Register by completing and returning this form to: John Tipper Email: john@reveillerrides.co.uk Tel: 0208 360 8590 or Mbl: 07860 773711 Pay direct to Sort Code: 30-96-94 a/c no: 00791646 Ref: FMT or AMT + your name Cash or Cheques payable to Essex Advanced Motorcyclists Group Ltd on the day Name:

Address: Postcode:


Email: Riding Experience Aspirations: Annual Mileage:


FTFM - 2020 Membership Secretary

Observer Co-ordinator

Paula Hockey

John Tullett



Additional Membership Fee

Contribution to Observer

£20 pa

£10 per ride

Essex Advanced Motorcyclist Group Promoting Excellence in Motorcycling Since 1982

Chris Johnson, Editor Printed by Colchester Press. Please mention EAMG when replying to advertisers - it identifies you!

http://www.eamg.org.uk Affiliated to the British Motorcyclists Federation Registered Charity Number 1107703

Disclaimer and Copyright Notice: The articles published herein do not necessarily represent the views of the Essex Advanced Motorcyclists Group. They are the opinions of individual contributors and are published with a view that free expression promotes discussion and interest. Any spelling or grammatical errors are the responsibility of the editor .. Inclusion of adverts is not to be construed as EAMG endorsement, although most advertisers are excellent, but seek personal recommendations.Text Š EAMG 2020 Illustrations Š EAMG 2020, except where indicated otherwise. Group material may be reproduced provided acknowledgement is given to EAMG and the original author.

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Essex Advanced Motorcyclists Group Ltd, Registered Office, St Laurence House, 2 Gridiron Place, Upminster, Essex, RM14 2BE Registered in England & Wales, Registration No. 5258261


Essex Advanced Motorcyclist Group Promoting Excellence in Motorcycling Since 1982