Simba the ‘Steamer’

Back in the early 1990’s, Triumph introduced a motorbike to compete with the BMW ‘GS’ series. They dubbed the bike ‘Tiger’, and it is still in production today. In fact, today there’s an entire model line ranging from the Tiger 800/800XC models, the Tiger 1050, and the newly introduced Tiger Explorer. These bikes have one thing in common – they are all powered by 3-cylinder engines.

I found this bike posted for sale on ADV, and immediately fell in lust:

Simba 2

A long-time compadre asked ‘so what does your new bike do for you that the old one didn’t?’. My answer was pretty straightforward. FAR more comfortable, MUCH more power without much more weight, and she’s a triple.

Nick took several more pics for ‘pre-shipment’ documentation. Here’s another one …

Pre-ship 1

She sure will make a great stablemate for Katrina!


After an 18-hour delay to repair a bearing failure on the trailer, Martin arrived, having driven 12 hours straight from Utah. Here are some pics of the delivery:


Simba is about mid-trailer, with a Harley and a race car in front, and a Ducati, a BMW, and a wrecked Gold Wing trike behind. There were two Harleys in the van.


Nick checks underneath for obstructions, she’s almost ready …


She’s on her way down …


I’ve got the front brake and hold her up while Nick lifts her up …


She fired right up and I rode her to her assigned parking spot …


Parked next to Valerie Viffer, safe for the night in Pioneer 😉

Just for the record, other than Simba and the tiny racecar (which was headed for Australia), everything on that trailer and the two Harleys in the van were all destined for China. Hmmm…

Now to get busy! Gotta get her ready for Cambria. 😉

July 26, 2012 – Let the farkleing begin!

Got into a bit of disassembly so I could get at the wiring to connect switched power for GPS/Video accessories, plus she needed a headlight bulb replacement, so…


She’s pretty ugly this way; but ya gotta do it to get at the wiring and headlight bulbs

Let the farkling begin! I spent several hours choosing the ground point and a tap for switched 12V, and also mounted my 2000 lumen LED auxiliary lights and getting the wiring ready for the switch that’s on order. Once all of that was done and tested, I put her lovely clothes back on …


Back together, Simba’s back to being beautiful!


You can just see the Aux lights in this one …

and here’s her cockpit, with GPS and Contour video cam in place. Switched 12V is available now to power them.


You can just see the video camera on the left. GPS is ready to go!

Here’s a closer look at one of the LED Auxiliary lights …

Aux Light

These babies are BRIGHT!

Now Simba is ready for this weekend’s test ride down to Tracy, although I’ll probably install the Gustaffson windscreen before then, so I can get an idea how that performs.


She sure is a gorgeous Steamer!

I installed the Gustaffson windscreen, mostly because the standard ‘windscreen’ really isn’t one.

Gustaffson 1

The Gustaffson screen matches the lines of the bike very well!

another view from the cockpit …


Almost surprising that I still look OVER the screen and not through it.

Tomorrow – a shakedown cruise to visit the BFAM and the godkids, and a true test of everything!

July 28, 2012 – SHAKEDOWN!

Having received the small tank bag I’ll be using as ‘power central’ for GPS, video cams, etc., mounting that and filling her fuel tank, I was ready to head down to Tracy to check things out, visit my BFAM and the godkids, and pickup another video camera (GoPro Hero2). Here are a few pics from the day’s ride …

Shakedown 1

Simba ready for a shakedown launch!

Shakedown 2

At the Clements bakery and produce stand, where Hwy 88 merges with Hwy 12

Shakedown 3

A brief rest at the Countryside Mini Mart, where 88 and 12 diverge

Shakedown 4

The infamous bar/grill just as you enter Waterloo

Shakedown 5

Paused at Ernies General Store, near Hwy 99 on Hwy 88

I arrived in Tracy after a leisurely 2 hour ride, and hung out with John, Kaye, Johnny and Karmela for a few hours. Weather was pleasant enough – if a bit warmer than Pioneer. As with my other bikes, Johnny and Karmela got in a pose or two …

Shakedown 6

Godson Johnny astride Simba, with mama Kaye behind. The kid loves his bikes!

Shakedown 7

Kaye and John’s beautiful daughter Karmela. I told her she made the bike look great! (and she does!)

Now to learn the new camera, figure out a mounting solution, and get ready for Cambria in five days!

July 30, 2012 – New Camera mount points

Spent some time deciding where and how I could add mounts to get some alternate points of view for both the ‘old’ video cameras and the new Hero 2. Added one more mount up front and two on the rear, and can add more if I decide I want to. Here’s what went on today:

Cam Mount 1

This one adds another RAM ball, which I can use for any of the cameras, and I will be adding another in a similar spot on the left side.

Cam Mount 2

Here’s one on the lower rear, another RAM mount.

Cam Mount 3

This is one of the Hero ‘sticky quick-release’ mounts for the Hero 2. The advantage to this one is I can aim the camera forward (looking over the top of the trunk) or rearward from this mount.

I’ll shoot some test video and hopefully get it posted before my Friday departure for Cambria.

FIRST VIDEO CLIPS from the GoPro Hero2 camera:

This will be the last entry on this page; but fear not! Simba will get a lot of time as I ride her here and there. Here is a short video which includes some pics and video clips from Simba’s ride down to the 10th Annual New Bonneville Rally in Cambria (and back). Enjoy!

August 20 – Simba gets a new saddle!

My sweetie placed an order, and the vendor delivered it – a month early. It’s my birthday present (the date is actually September 22), and she decided the large box with ‘Corbin’ all over it might give it away …

Simba's Corbin 1

A beautiful, custom ordered Corbin saddle!

Simba Corbin 2

Looks really good, doncha think?

Simba Corbin 3

Good from this side, too! 🙂

Tomorow she’ll get a test ride!

September 9, 2012

Finally got the pannier mounts squared up. She’s looking good, and ready to go somewhere!

Pannier mounts squared up

Much better to have the panniers hanging square and straight!

Ready for a road trip

I could go on a very long road trip and have plenty of storage!

I’ve put close to 2000 miles on Simba in a little over a month, and she’s a winner. Comfortable in the extreme, zippy enough to keep things interesting, and unbelievably nimble. Yes indeed ….

October 2012 – Simba Goes to Weaverville!

and here’s the proof!

After years of pleasurable riding, I’d given Simba as much time and love as I could. She’d had her front forks rebuilt, got new tires, a new drive chain and chain slider, and a thorough going-over – then I let her move on to a new home. She was a loyal companion for many thousands of miles and brought a lot of smiles and many memories; but with Emma in the stable and two other bikes (Katrina and Sami), she was not going to be ridden as she deserved.

Fare well Simba! Treat your new owner as well as you’ve treated me, and I’m sure he’ll return the favor.

She'll have company in the form of a Ducati Monster.

She’ll have company in the form of a Ducati Monster.

Securely strapped down, she has a 2200 mile voyage to meet her new owner.

Securely strapped down, she has a 2200 mile voyage to meet her new owner.

Ryde on, lady!

  1. Love the bike. Congrats.
    I’m jealous.

  1. Pingback: So here we are… « foothillryder

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