A GREAT RIDE OUT AMIDST THE OXFORD RALLY FUN AND GAMES!

It’s 10.30 on the Saturday of our Oxford HOC rally at The Gate Hangs High and time to start the ride out. After the pre brief for all the riders,  Mark swings his leg over his Honda and settles down onto his furry sheep (by the way this was the name of Mark’s team that won Dave’s excellent quiz the night before). For those of you that are confused I suggest that you take a look at his seat cover next time you get a chance!  Tracy climbed aboard with Mark and with Pete and Jenny riding as our Tail Ender’s we knew we were in good hands at both front and rear. 
 
This proved to be the case with no one getting lost and the route marking spot on. Mark had worked out a ride of about 100 miles around the edge of the Cotswolds with three stops included. The roads had enough bends to satisfy the likes of no’s 46,  93 and 35 from Moto GP with a good mix of A, B and white roads. It wouldn’t have been our Chairman’s ride if he hadn’t included a good section of road with grass growing in the middle and he didn’t disappoint!  Some wonderful views, pretty villages and wooded areas with dappled sunlight all delighted the senses.
 
The first stop for a drinks and toilet rest was at the Toddington Steam Railway Station where a cafe, some shops and platform area along with other train attractions ensured a pleasant break. Lunchtime stop was a quiet, but good quality country pub, where they had laid out a large table in the garden for us to eat and enjoy what was a warm sunny day. 
 
Our final stop was for ice creams in Bibury, – a very touristy Cotswold village which was doing rather well from oversea visitors. Pete’s ice cream van supplied our last treat of the day and I think if anyone could wrest away his concession for this spot you would be able to buy as many new bikes as your heart desired!
All in all a great ride, great stops and great friends to enjoy it all with. I don’t think it gets any better than this, thanks Mark.

Colin

 

Oxford Steaming Ahead!

Our March ride out took place on St Patricks Day and led for the first time by our erstwhile hard working secretary Erica, our very own bundle of energy. She provided a ride out that was really Steaming, she had organised a bright sunny if somewhat chilly day as we were all moaning about our cold hands at the start, wimps that we are.
After Erica had coerced our ultra reliable Terry to be tail ender off we set.

We headed out to Wantage, and then up over the Downs which always provide wide sweeping bends to enjoy, I’m sure there is nothing better in motorcycling than approaching one of these bend, throwing down a couple of gears on the approach and opening the throttle hard at the apex “heaven”.

On to Hungerford for a drink stop at the Garden Centre and this being an Erica led ride of course she supplied us with cake, fruit and lemon drizzle with some slices as big as a family sized cake, but of course we duly scoffed them down.

After this break a pleasing ride through quaint villages with time to enjoy country roads and views. This led us to our destination for the day, if you noticed at the start I said “she gave us a steaming ride” well we were at the Great Western Railway museum in Swindon. Several of our large turn out (20+ bikes) went in and enjoyed spending time in this “well worth a visit” museum. 

All in all what all ride outs should contain fun roads, interesting stops and refreshments and most of all great friends to enjoy it all with. Thanks Erica.

Colin Webb

18.3.2019

Winterising your Bike – Nigel Coulson Chief Operating Officer Aegis Moto Ltd.

There are lots of on-line guides and blog entries dedicated to beating corrosion on your bike over winter and an assortment of chemicals to help do the job. But whatever methods and chemicals you personally prefer, the most important thing that makes the biggest difference is still regular washing. Do as much as you can to remove dust and dirt from your bike, even if it’s just a quick hose-down with cold water after a ride, anything is better than leaving it. This is your starting point, the bare minimum that needs to be done. After that, anything else you do will be a bonus.

Corrosion blockers, of which there are many, offer a great deal of help. However they are not all the same and their various performances range from ineffectual to outstanding, depending for the most part on how they are used. Although many of them are oil-based, it’s not the oil that does the work. The additives in them are the dedicated corrosion-blockers, not the oil itself. Consequently, old engine oil is not a useful corrosion blocker, nor is WD40, 3in1, chain lube or anything else like that.

In almost ten years of exclusively valeting motorcycles, specialising in corrosion prevention, I have only found three dedicated corrosion blockers that deliver what they promise;

XCP Rust Blocker;
the newest and arguably the most effective. Thick and sticky, great for large areas and flatish surfaces where it can form a broad, even, protective layer. Best applied very lightly with a compressor and spray gun.

ACF-50;
the one that everyone’s heard of. Thinner than Rust Blocker, ideal for fiddly, convoluted and deeply recessed areas where it’s runnier nature allows it to spread over difficult-to-access surfaces and creep into tiny gaps. Best applied lightly with a compressor or spray gun again, but can be used from the aerosol can with the straw to get into difficult-to-access areas such as deeply recessed bolt holes.

A word of warning! These two go like jam if you put too much on and will hold every bit of dirt and grit that gets into them against your bike, look nasty and be extremely difficult to remove. Little and often is the way to go, re-apply lightly after thoroughly washing and drying your bike, wiping each fresh application down with a microfibre to remove any excess. If it looks greasy, you have too much on. You’ll gain no extra protection from using too much, you’ll just make a mess and waste money. Also, never ever get these on your tyres or brakes!

Scottoil FS365;
The one that nobody believes in. Being water-based, the behavior of this is very different to the other two. So easy to apply from its trigger-spray bottle, spray it all over your bike, then walk off and leave it. This differs from the other two mostly in that it needs to be re-used every single time the bike has got wet. It’s water soluble, so comes off with water, including rain. However, use it correctly and it does an amazing job at keeping your bike clean as all the dirt that sticks to it washes away as it comes off.

My professional advice for maximum protection is to use a combination of the above as a belt-and-braces approach. Have a corrosion-prevention valet done by a pro, then use FS365 yourself over the top.

Remember, it’s not just the winter road-salt that will corrode your bike. Salt is present everywhere, in all the road-side dust and dirt, all year round. Our prevailing westerly winds come in off the Atlantic ocean, carrying millions of tonnes of rain each year, all of it starting out as salty sea-water.”
 
 

Nigel Coulson
Chief Operating Officer
Aegis Moto Ltd.

07729 002 449

January ride out!

My self, Mark, Glen and John departed from Peartree at 10:30, we decided not to use drop off and we had a flowing ride passing through the centre of Reading only being slowed by two sets of red lights.   South of the M4 we passed through Fleet,   Farnham and the twisting roads of surrey arriving at the Devils Punch Bowl café at exactly 12:15. 

Forty-five minutes later,our bodies refuelled we headed off along the A3 and through the Hindhead tunnels, intending to return via Alton and Basingstoke, the inclusion of some very nice roads around Seale confused the sat nav and it rerouted us via Wokingham and Henley on Thames.

Mark getting low on fuel we decided it was prudent too stop, James Bond was at the same filling station, well someone who must have fancied himself as James Bond, he was driving an Aston Martin DB9 reg XX XX JB and 007 inscribed were the plate manufacture’s name should be

We were blessed with warm sun and dry roads all day, myself and Glen covering circa 180 miles and returning   home in daylight an hour before the sunset and the return of the cold! 

Andy

 

All ready for 2019!

On the first day of 2019 HOC Oxford members met up for their annual New Year’s day lunch at The Gate Hangs High, Hook Norton – where Oxford hold their annual rally (this year on the 12th-14th of July).  A delicious meal and lots of laughter ensued! 
 
With plans for the year now well under way, regular meetings planned, ride outs and events organised plus more in the melting pot for the year, the year is well underway.  See the ‘Events’ page for all the latest information.  
 
If you own, or have owned, a Honda come along to one of our meetings on the 1st and 3rd Tuesday of each month at The Jolly Boatman, Kidlington and find out more.  We meet up around 8pm for a chat or to listen to a speaker and have a chip and sandwich supper at 9pm (£2.50 a head)
 
Look forward to seeing anyone who is interested. 
Erica

OXFORD BRANCH MEET FOR BACON BUTTIES AND THEN ONTO TURWESTON AIRFIELD

Twenty five members of the Oxford Branch headed towards Aderbury to meet up at Pete and Jen’s for Bacon Butties and Sausage Sandwiches which were enjoyed on the patio in the September sunshine.   Everyone then headed off for a great ride around some twisty roads in the Cotswolds, ending up at the Turweston Airfield to watch the planes come whilst enjoying a yummy lunch from the cafe. 

All well fed and watered, it was agreed it was an excellent day with good roads, food and company!
 
 
 
 

 

Oxford’s sunshine rally!

On a very warm Friday afternoon everyone started to arrive at The Gate Hangs High at Hook Norton, casting off their biking gear with great haste before they melted, and starting to erect their tents.  The Oxford team had been there early setting up a marquee and getting the coffee, tea, biscuits and cake  ready.  Twenty-one tents and camper vans were soon in place and the Oxford Rally ‘village’ was set up and ready to start enjoying the weekend, whilst others settled into the B&B facilities at the back of the pub.

 
Time for a visit to the pub for a cold drink and to sample the delicious food – with HOC ‘specials’ to keep the prices reasonable – and prepare for Ted’s brain teasing quiz.  The evening progressed and heads were scratched and answers were sought.  The winning team were  visitors to the Hook Norton Beer Festival but they did share their box of chocolates which were the first prize!  Off to bed not-too-late as there was the ride out to be enjoyed tomorrow!
 
A bright and sunny Saturday morning greeted the ralliers with breakfast – either self cooked or in the pub – before the bikes assembled at a civilised time of 11am for a beautiful ‘twisty’ ride to Kemble Airfield for lunch and to watch the planes come and go.  Then it was off again to enjoy the roads around Stroud as the 28 bikes wended their way back to the camp site – just in time for a freshen up before starting the BBQ or again enjoying a meal in the pub. 
 
Not everyone made the ride out as one bike had a slow slide fall on a bad camber road on the journey in and there were telephone calls and rushing round to locate a new brake lever – which was purchased and fitted, all before the end of the afternoon
 
Evening arrived and so did Pete, our very talented entertainer, who kept everyone singing and laughing till just gone midnight when the last stragglers toddled to their beds before up and off home on Sunday morning.  
 
However, before leaving on Sunday, everyone had to judge the Best Honda Bike at the rally and the first to get their sheets back to the event sponsor, Dave from MIS Newbury, received a cash prize and …….. then for the award.  A very surprised Bob won cleaning goodies and a plaque for his beautifully kept 20 year old plus Honda Africa Twin.  Well deserved Bob!  The winner was closely followed by two very well kept Blackbirds that had been showing off their beauty all weekend.
 
Then it was tents packed, farewells said and off home – sunburnt, well fed and watered!
 

Erica

 

HOC Oxford enjoy gliding at Weston on the Green!

 

At the third attempt seven of the Oxford HOC members  turned up at Oxford Gliding Club on a beautiful hot sunny evening to find all the gliders out and ready for us.

Vince was head of the queue and as he desired to do a loop, went up in the two seater DG505 – a fibreglass slippery glider with extended winglets – and not only did a loop but a half turn loop  (a far worse feeling)!

Gavin and his two children also came along and all went up and enjoyed their flights.

Colin then went up in a K13 (wooden glider) with instructor Andy and did rather well on the controls with Andy complimenting him on his co-ordinated turns (better than some club members!).

Colin’s wife Sue was persuaded to have a go and she went in the DG505 but just took in the view although thoroughly enjoyed her experience.

 I then went in the K13 and told Andy I hadn’t flown for two years so he said I could do the launch, flying and landing – which, like riding a bike, I did OK and arrived back at the launch point without issues!

Vince up again in the DG505 and I did a hanger flight in the DG but did not do the launch or landing – which was a fast ground bumpy run to enable the glider to finish up near the hangar.

A great evening was enjoyed by all.

 

Chris Tristram

1.7.2018

 

 

 

 
 

April Ride out – A Chiltern Conundrum!

After Sunday’s ride out I got to thinking about what makes a good club ride out and came up with these.

Firstly good friendly company, a fun start to the day, a ride with plenty of twists and turns on roads new to us or at least not well traveled, destinations and stops that add to the whole experience, great views along the way and a challenge or difficult section that will stay in the memory and keep as a talking point years after the event.
Well on Sunday Mark & Tracy treated us to just such a ride so thanks to them for a fantastic day out, how they managed to organise such stunning weather as well I don’t know but so glad they did.
 
We started of with bacon butties at the Clargo homestead along with some banter and laughs. They then led us out into the country and those twisty roads along with a zillion cyclists out enjoying the sunshine. Our main stop was in Henley along side the river for ice creams and a drink sat there watching families play sweethearts doing what sweethearts do on a sunny Sunday and all the ducks, swans and boats on the river Thames was a real joy. Our return journey saw us finish up at the H cafe for more refreshments and more good conversation. 
 
Well I know that you are now asking what Mark found for our “Do you remember when-“ moment as if the previous wasn’t enough well Mark had found this road. It was about a mile of up hill single track road with about a foot of very wet mud from the rain the night before stuck right in between the two section of road and these being the width of a car tyre and badly cut up so that it was like riding on cobbles. This road was kept to a car width by dirt banks on either side with woods on both sides making the road quite difficult to see in the dappled sunlight. Mark refused to tell us how much he had paid the group of cyclist half way up on our side which meant that we had to cross over the mud and test our nerves and handling when our back wheels squirmed and slid over onto the other lane.  But cresting over the top of this climb onto safer ground certainly made us all feel good our three passages especially.

So all in all Mark and Tracy had given us all a fantastic and enjoyable club ride it really is what HOC Oxford is all about many thanks to both of you.

 

 

Colin Webb

March ride out – Springtime fun and sun

Fourteen bikes met at Pete and Jen’s to enjoy bacon butties and sausage baps before embarking on a great ride in the sunshine through winding roads and beautiful Cotswold villages to arrive a the very large and busy Stratford Garden Centre ready to choose from a delicious selection of cakes or scrummy lunches before making the journey home again in lovely sunshine!  
 
The Oxford Branch have regular monthly ride outs throughout the year, led by different members of the Branch, to a variety of different destinations ensuring a fun time is had by all,  enjoying our bikes.
 
Erica
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