Breganze’s Best Rally in B.C. — RoadRUNNER Motorcycle Touring & Travel…

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Laverda 1200 TS

Breganze’s Best Rally in

If Ducati is the Ferrari of motorcycles, Laverda must be the Lamborghini.

in small numbers, and always oriented, Laverda’s big twins and defied the established paradigm Italian motorcycles were and light with suspect systems. Massimo Laverda’s were robust and hugely with ancillaries chosen the best available sources: Nippon Denso, Brembo, and Lafranconi. And when bought-in weren’t up to snuff, as happened drum brakes and cast Laverda simply made own.

The story

In 1948, was reeling from the devastation of and much of the country’s transportation was in ruins. The people needed to get inexpensively, spurring a demand for rugged motorcycles; and many especially former defense – Piaggio, Innocenti, Ducati and for example – moved into the business.

Seventy-five years Pietro Laverda had begun farm machinery at a small in Breganze, in the foothills of the Italian The company thrived, but the post-war depression meant Laverda had capacity to spare. So Pietro’s Francesco designed a 75cc, OHV motorcycle with a three-speed and acceding to the enthusiastic demands of his he decided to go into production.

The first batch of 500 Laverda was built in 1951.

Now committed to manufacture, Laverda needed and in order to sell motorcycles in you have to go racing. Laverda a 75 in the 1951 Milano-Taranto race, and carburetion problems forced the bike proved competitive. Two later, in the same race, filled the first 14 places in class!

Success followed in the class until 1956, which OHC Ceccatos and Ducati (both designed by Fabio dominated the class.

By the late Italians, now more affluent, trading in their motorcycles and for small cars, especially the 500cc cinquecento. Francesco’s son Massimo realized that motorcycle business needed to He correctly predicted a shift to capacity machines as motorcycles from basic transportation to

And he realized Laverda needed to be in the market.

The Laverda 750 twin of used a 360-degree crankshaft a British twin, but it also an overhead camshaft, five-speed and electric start like the Japanese bikes. In 1972 the sportier 750S, followed up by the of Laverda’s own drum front in the 750SF (Super Freno). The SF2 Brembo disc brakes in 1973, and then the final with Laverda’s own cast became the SF3.

The most of them all is the highly collectible (Super Freni Competizione) model.

Even more was Laverda’s next project, a 1000cc, overhead cam bike at the 1969 Milan show. Laverda had earned a reputation for motors, the triple was even with a five main crankshaft using ball and a needle roller outrigger for the

A unique feature of the engine was its crankshaft layout with the two pistons moving up and down alternating with the center and creating the triple’s signature sound. It took Laverda three years to get the triple, the 3C, production, and a further two years to out ignition and mechanical problems. For the upgraded 3CL came with Brembo discs and Laverda’s own wheels.

Following up on their success in racing, UK importer Slater persuaded the factory to build a bike using their modifications. This became the Laverda’s best known and successful model. At the time, the was the fastest production motorcycle with a top speed of over

Less successful, a “1200″ version never fully its potential.

In 1983, a conventional crank was adopted and vibration with rubber engine The new bikes became the Jota RGA, RGS (with touring Executive (hard luggage) and the The final batch of around 250 was produced in 1988: over 20 fewer than 20,000 and triples had been produced.

Italian motorcycle conglomerate now owns the dormant Laverda although Piero (Massimo’s brother) and his son Giovanni still the flame alive through Corse, a demonstration fleet of factory racers used to Italian race fans

The Pacific Northwest Laverda

The backwoods of British Columbia are not you’d expect to find the principal supplier of Laverda but in the lake-spa resort town of Wolfgang Haerter operates his and hosts each July’s Northwest Laverda Rally. all Italian makes are welcome, the is on the bikes from Breganze.

Two or so enthusiasts parked on Wolfgang’s forty this year for an weekend of comparing notes and passions, which also them with a chance to their bikes under all-knowing supervision. Wolfgang with his comprehensive inventory of parts and considerable experience) is the that holds the Northwest’s bike community together, owners of these two-wheeled to keep the spirit alive.

And their reputation for longevity and it’s not surprising that Laverdas arrived under own steam – mine included. I more than 1,000 in four days on my 1982 Mirage “TS” sport traveling to, around, and back the Nakusp area.

My Mirage is like no other I’ve ridden. It’s heavy, and requires some around at low speeds. In the curves, its takes a little effort to in, but once set up, it holds its line

The soft-tuned TS motor produces of grunt but doesn’t like to rev too a result of its “EPA” restrictive Wolfgang tells me there are more potential ponies the hood” that a set of Jota and a new exhaust system would and I plan to open those doors sometime

Two of the nicest at Wolfgang’s gathering came of Calgary’s Paul LeClair. has been steadily improving and his 1978 1200 with aftermarket accessories and performance all incorporated with care and The result is a glorious-sounding ground-pounder to concours finish with sport-bike capabilities.

For example, Paul has tamed the notoriously heavy clutch, it into a single-finger operation.

other entry in the field sold) was one of the rarest and most of all Laverdas (save for the experimental V-6 a 1974 750 Super Freni Eletronica, a production racer and the Laverda with electronic If you had to ask the price

Yet, although Laverda ownership is still I paid just $5,000 for my TS and the 750 twins sell for even Collectors ought to get one while can.

Laverda 1200 TS
Laverda 1200 TS
Laverda 1200 TS
Laverda 1200 TS
Laverda 1200 TS

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