My Wheels — Chapter 28
1978? Yamaha 400

In the previous episode of My Wheels I mentioned that both that chapter and this one would suffer from foggy memory regarding timing. I also mentioned that in this installment I would try to at least explain how the vehicles were related even if I couldn’t explain when. That I will and I’ll even tie up a loose end from several chapters back.

Once again the vehicle I actually owned is not the one pictured. I’m not even sure it’s the right year. The photo shows a 1978 model and it looks about right so the model of the motorcycle being discussed must have been within a year or so. The bike was a gift of sorts from my oldest son. Regular readers may recall that the Mazda in the previous chapter came into my possession when that same son could no longer handle a loan I had cosigned. When he moved to California he presented me with the Yamaha more or less as payment for dropping the Mazda in my lap, etc.

I initially shied away from riding the bike because of brakes. My Wheels — Chapter 21 concerned my 1979 Chevy Van and ended with the phrase “until a trade opportunity came along.” This was it. A mechanic friend put new brakes on the Yahama in exchange for the abused Chevy. I rode the bike some after that but not a whole lot. It really wasn’t the bike I would have bought for myself had I gone shopping for a bike which I hadn’t.

Before long another trade opportunity came along. I had ignored the RX7 so long that the rotor became frozen in place. I knew a fellow who was familiar with Mazda rotaries having raced them for awhile, and we worked out a deal to get the idle Mazda running in exchange for the nearly idle Yahama. He did get the rotor free and cleared up some other issues but did not have complete success. The friend who bought the car had to pay someone to get it running. I clearly wasn’t the winner in either of those trades but there was a lot of that sort of thing going on then. It was the season of my second divorce.

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