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THE TIME MACHINE – Unobtanium Deluxe

January 7, 2010


Some days I hate working with the WordPress interface.  I was unable to upload these pictures to WP directly so I had to post them on my Bimmerboard account and then link them back to the article.  Arg.  Anyway, to the story.

This purchase was a combination of too many drinks and late night e-bay surfing.  I woke up in the morning and my inbox had one of those “You won” e-mails.  Won what?  I thought. 

I had drunkenly purchased a 1988 Kawasaki ZX-10 Ninja – BRAND NEW IN THE BOX, UNASSEMBLED.  Bullshit.  I thought.  That’s not possible this is 2008 and all those bikes are either crashed or painted purple with chrome extended swingarms and a wolf with red eyes painted on the fairing.   A friend and I drove to Rhode Island with a trailer and a money order.   My wingman had strict instructions to keep the car running if this turned out to be too good to be true.   It was not.   THIS is what I bought. 

How is it possible to buy a bike that old that is new in the box?  Well I’ll tell you.  In 1988 the United States Congress was considering banning Superbike motorcycles.  The popularity of the Honda Hurricane, Kawasaki Ninja, FZR1000, and others were providing Darwin awards on a daily basis.  Several enterprising dealers decided to hedge their bets by keeping a few new bikes boxed if legislation deemed these things outlawed.   This particular bike was kept in a dealer’s warehouse for twenty years and forgotten.

I’m working on the rest of the story.  To be posted shortly.  In the MEANTIME take a look on the right side of this page for more.

7 Comments leave one →
  1. Mark Rooney permalink
    January 18, 2010 4:05 pm

    Absolutely beautiful(of what I can see from the one photo)! A piece of 1980’s motorcycle history on two wheels. What a fantastic find!

    I want you to pick my number for the lottery, luck must be your first/middle/last name. Congrats on the purchase!

    • January 18, 2010 10:13 pm

      Thank you! I’m way behind on posting new stories and reviews. Keep watching there should be more content up in the next few days.

  2. James permalink
    August 28, 2010 7:13 am

    I would be curious as to how this bike compares to modern bikes, at least for the average user. With the exception of ABS and radial tires, I’ll bet it is pretty comparable with todays offerings for street use by a rider of average skill.

    • August 28, 2010 7:33 am

      Bikes of that vintage had radial tires. The most significant difference for me is handling and brakes. The Ninja steers very slowly and the brakes are nothing like the radial monoblock Brembo’s on a Ducati 1198 or a ZX-14 Kawasaki. Accelleration is another matter entirely. The Ninja will absolutely keep up with just about anything created since. When you hit 7000 rpm it’s like lighting the afterburner on an F-16 fighter jet – BOOM! you’re gone. It is an enjoyable motorcycle and I’m sorry every day that I had to sell it.

  3. bondichook permalink
    August 10, 2015 10:24 pm

    Did you ever write the rest of this story?

    • August 18, 2015 12:15 pm

      Never did. Someday.

      • bondichook permalink
        August 18, 2015 5:20 pm

        Do you still have it? I’ve just bought one and would love to hear how it panned out with yours.

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