I had an absolute ball in Toronto!
Toronto is one of those melting pot cities that celebrates diversity.
Nowhere was that diversity more apparent than in the bikes that were on display.
For two days I got a dose of medication that pushed the PMS back.
It’s tough to be a reporter and run a booth, but with the help of our Ontario sales rep and reporter, Cookie, we got the job done and I had the opportunity to go for a walk about before the show opened to the public on Saturday morning. I was able to spend some time with the different vendors, meet with the different riding clubs and see the bikes!
Ahhh, the bikes…
It matters not what brand you ride, the discipline that fuels your passion or what club or group of friends you ride with or don’t – put a motorcycle, ANY motorcycle in front of two riders and conversation will take place, sometimes debate will transpire but whether or not they like what they see, conversation will ensue.
There were many antique and vintage bikes on display, and Don Hart from Napanee who is one of the bigger collectors in the province of Ontario had a great variety of bikes in his booth.
Indians and Harley’s reign supreme in the Don Hart booth, grand old ladies that have been nurtured and preserved not only for posterity but also out of love and passion. The perfection of the machines that this man has restored is awe-inspiring. No detail has been ignored or left out.
One of my favorite machines in his display was the 1942 Indian with the inline 4 engine. I am partial to Indians and spent a good amount of time drooling over that red beauty.
Then there were the trikes, one rat trike caught my eye – all psychedelic and 1960’s…the Anaconda trike was probably one of the most bizarre machines I have ever laid my eyes on. It is definitely not something I would consider for my garage, but it was filled with all sorts of details that kept your mind and eye busy.
Steve Shuller from Industrial Custom Cycles was on hand with four of his creations; my two favorites were his Indian Larry tribute bike and the Peterbuilt bike. The Indian Larry tribute bike was filled with the signature question mark of Larry and all done up in the metal flake and twisted metal that Larry made famous.
In the tank of the Peterbuilt bike are a pistol, a set of cards and a tattoo gun – encased in resin and that’s just the beginning of the unique touches that grace this beauty.
If blinged out barges are your style, then you would not have been disappointed with the offering from Spartucus from Quebec. The bike won the best of show trophy. There is a phenomenon that many riders may not be aware of; Quebec is a hot bed of custom builders with talent and imagination that would blow your mind. Spartucus showed us a great example of that creativity, as did Concept & Design Cycle – also from Quebec. The Black Widow bike was a favorite of many as they saw it as highly rideable and admired all of the little touches and details that set this Night Rod apart from the norm.
Yes, the Toronto National Motorcycle & Tattoo show was filled with motorcycles that sparked one’s imagination, created dialogue and ignited some interesting debates with regards to ride ability, aesthetics and the would you ride it question.