Two stories of UK to Australia
Western Australia & South Coast, NSW.


Tom's Story

I'm 75 this month and have been interested in bikes since I was 16. I started life as an apprentice truck mechanic but I have always preferred working on bikes having never owned a new one, always projects and the like.

After a 20 year break from bikes whilst our daughters were growing up, in 1998, I got into "pre 65" trials after spotting a 1959 DOT in the local free paper. It was about a mile away, so I walked to the guy's house, bought it (£300) and pushed it back home. I wanted a DOT having lusted after one since I was 16 and saw one in a shop window. The DOT factory building still existed in Manchester. Most of the building was now rented out as small industrial units but there was still a DOT presence with mountains of dusty spares. It was great to "compete" with my childhood heroes but I was pretty crap as a rider riding against guys with 40 years experience and ex works riders as well but I loved it.

I tried a 1955 350 Royal Enfield Bullet and then a Beamish Suzuki, still a crap rider! I bought a Yamaha SR250, a TT250 and a Suzuki TS185, total cost $150!.

After moving to Western Australia from UK in 2014 with my wife to be with our two daughters and six grandchildren, I found a 1987 Honda VF700C "Super" Magna on Gumtree for $1400.

What attracted me was the four exhaust pipes, so reminiscent of the first CB750 launched in the late 60s and Mike Hailwood's Hondas. Also, pretty rare in WA, which is kind of good but getting spares has been a problem although i do enjoy making things. I'm happy enough to potter solving all of the little problems that cropped up. Progress was slow. The odd hour every couple of days or so. Sometimes I wouldn't touch it for weeks

Over 5 years later, having straightened the frame, repaired the bodywork, (replaced a carb that was held together with araldite!) junked what was left of the California emissions system and overhauled pretty much everything except the engine. I now have a bike ready for it's inspection. It' doesn't bother me that it's not concours. Polishing can come later!

Luckily, I get more fun out of fixing than riding nowadays!


John's Story 

My name is John and I am a new member. (just another Pommie git with some jap bikes).

I retired 2 years ago & moved down from the Gong to Batemans Bay. I owned lots of bikes in the UK, mainly RD's & a few 4 stroke Kwaker's. I have almost completed restoring my current RD's (see photo) and would like to rego one a year.

I'm now working on restoring the TZ250 and hope to do a few fast safe laps around Wakefield Park near me. I just purchased the T500 from a guy up in Newcastle area.

I look forward to any members living in or passing by this area!


This item was first published in the Welcome to the VJMC section of the VJMC Forum available to VJMC members on this website. If you are a new member, please share a bit about yourself or your bikes in "Welcome to the Forum" (top item in the Forum).