5 Minute Histories: The Indian Chief

Introduction The story of the Indian Chief is one that is not quite of the order of sadness of a Shakespearean tragedy but it is nonetheless one that evokes a number of “what if” questions from motorcycle enthusiasts and especially Indian enthusiasts. The Chief was first produced in 1922 fitted with a 62 cu. in….

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A Brief History of the UJM – The Universal Japanese Motorcycle

The creation of the Japanese sword gives us an insight into the thinking behind the creation of the Universal Japanese Motorcycle (UJM). In the time prior to the Japanese creating their own sword design they used a variety of design concepts mostly borrowed from China. But there came a point at which they seem to have collectively decided that the two handed sabre was the best choice…

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5 Minute Histories: The Norton Commando

Introduction The Norton Commando is a vintage British motorcycle whose name would become so iconic it’s still a household name decades after the originals left production. Most people with even a passing interest in motorcycles will have heard of it. Given that the Norton Commando was created using a dated parallel twin engine and certainly…

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5 Minute Histories: The Honda CB750

Motorcycles were a market that was to be a natural opening for Japanese industry. Although the British, Americans, Italians, and Germans were making motorcycles that sold well they were steeped in traditional ideas of what a motorcycle should and should not be. The Japanese were not. Japan had worked on creating a motorcycle industry especially in the post war period.

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5 Minute Histories: The Story of the Yamaha XS650

The Beginning The Japanese are an interesting people. When US Commodore Matthew Perry engaged in a bit of American “gunboat diplomacy” back in 1853 the Japanese were forced to emerge from their two hundred and fifty years of isolation from the world. In just fifty years they went from being a sixteenth century nation with…

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