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John Bonham's motorcycle at auction

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John Bonham's motorcycle at auction

(Google Translation):AARHUS

Many famous motorbike "Captain America" on nethinden from the 1969 film Easy Rider with Peter Fonda in the saddle. It was sold Saturday for eight mio. kr. at auction in Los Angeles. Nu Rogaland restaurateur Mickey Lee's famous motorbike at the same auction.

Under a besøg in the århusianske pizza king in his Mackie's Pizza is the almost umuligt that order to avoid BSA Chopper motorcyklen, where for a quarter century has weather wallpaper - udsmykning - among tusinder af second Collectibles in restaurations cantinaen - which fodboldtrøjer, berømtheders guitars, autographs, photos and guldplader.

In fact, there is no question of any motorbike. Chopper has in fact belonged to none other end John Bonham, where as the drummer in the English band Led Zeppelin several times indene his death in 1980 was udråbt as the world bedste and one af the most revolution rendering personal honors indenfor subject with drumsticks.

»Tidernas changes. Fortunately. For my generation was John Bonham a begreb. The young people, who come here in cantinaen today Kender him, so I have decided to send the Dejlige motorbike on. I have so many things minder and souvenirs Haeng, and then there ske suffered enjoy Nogle walk, "sag Mickey Lee.
At auction in California

He will not even make the berømthedens motorbike. The dollars, the indbringer, go to godgørende purposes. After long omveje comes indtjeningen among andet to go to a statue af NetOp John Bonham. The legend's daughter, singer Deborah Bonham none are Færden that traveling 50,000 dollars, so there may be traveling a statue af father in his native town of Redditch in England.

"I forsøgte first that afsætte motorcyklen to the Hard Rock Café, but they were huge that come igennem to. So I call her daughter Deborah, there actually is a great song Rinde in England. She was with the idea - and so I fik barrels in the large auktionshus Profiles in History. Director ringed Compare. He was aflame, then ye shall be motorcyklen packaged in a trækasser sent to California and at auction in marts, "sag Mickey Lee.
Karantæne from private Værtshus

Mickey Lee saw ad with John Bonhams motorbike in 1988 the music magazine Rolling Stones.

"There was an English phone, I call on. Three days later the John Bonhams Sun, Jason Bonham, op with the cycle in Aarhus in a box truck. He fik 3,500 pounds, three beers and a pizza. So he væk igen, and I apologies Bonhams motorbike. "

Mickey Lee has many minder with the Aarhus famous two-wheeler.

"It hung in the first year of the jukebox been house and disco Downtown, which I ejede. I remember one evening, I havde fået suffered too much. I ended up in the saddle with a bottle of tequila in his hand - and pinned igennem. In the end, Peter Elgaard, and manages the casino, gave me a month's karantæne for my opførsel. On mit own Værtshus, "nagging Mickey Lee.
Tags themselves to auction

Now it is not certain that Bonhams bike indbringer all as many millions as "Captain America" in Saturday at Profiles in History-auction. Struggled not.

"But they sag, that motorcykler from famous honor is good sales items. Now it should be exhibited Nogle months, and then it may be that "snebolden" rolls, and where prospective demand for it. And so it may be that there is also abiding suffered to kræftramte's children. The only thing I have conditioned me is that I get a return ticket to California, so I can witness the auction, "sag Mickey Lee.

jbonham_motorcycle.jpg

Photo: Kim Haugaard
By Morten Ravn | Tuesday, October 28, 2014, 12:56

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Mackie's Pizza: http://www.mackiespizza.dk

http://stiften.dk/aarhus/john-bonhams-motorcykel-ryger-paa-auktion

post-5-0-98794600-1415377583_thumb.jpg

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Thanks, any idea how it ended up there, I just thought that it would end up in the hands of a collecter rather than hanging on a wall in a Swedish restaurant.

No offence to Swedish Zeppelin fans.

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That motorcycle would really be something to have in one's collection. Restore it and place it under spotlights.

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So, did John buy the bike and then replace the American flag on the gas tank with the Union Jack and swap the round headlamp for two square one's? and the front forks too?

Peter-Fonda-easy-rider.jpg

Edited by juxtiphi

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Here something from the IMDB Easy Rider Trivia page,

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0064276/trivia

There were 2 bikes used for Captain America, one was stolen the other was burned in the end of the movie. The burned bike was later restored by Peter Fonda and was sold to John Parham and can be seen in the National Motorcycle Museum in Anamosa Iowa.

Edited by juxtiphi

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I think it says that they hope the Bonham bike sells for as much as the Captain America bike did, not that it is the same bike

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I think it says that they hope the Bonham bike sells for as much as the Captain America bike did, not that it is the same bike

I hope so, I don't see any of that in the god awful translation google did on the original text. I can only find a mention of this in a twitter feed. There are no news stories coming up in the results when searching for this topic. Although there are a bunch of results containing the word Bonham in them, it relates to the Bonham auction house in San francisco.

Edited by juxtiphi

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Auction begins October 1, 2015:

Lot 1875: John Bonham’s custom Triumph “Sunset Tripper” chopper.

H3257-L78857821.jpg

Estimated Price: $30,000 - $50,000

Description:

1875. Led Zeppelin drummer John Bonham’s custom Triumph “Sunset Tripper” chopper ridden in the epic documentary film The Song Remains the Same. Burbank Customs 1972 “Sunset Tripper” chopper built for Led Zeppelin drummer John Bonham. Inspired by the legendary “Captain America” chopper from Easy Rider, the four members of Led Zeppelin commissioned Ron Hagest, owner of California-based Burbank Customs, to create Triumph-based choppers for each of the band mates. Hagest designed and built the motorcycles based on a rigid, hard-tail frame with customized twisted-steel “springer” front forks and stacked rectangular headlights. Replete with the Union Jack paint scheme on the gas tank and high back seat with sissy bar, each member of the band had his particular “rune,” or symbol (Bonham’s being three intersecting circles, as seen on the cover of their fourth album) welded and chromed on the sissy bar. The Triumph 650cc two-cylinder engine is from a 1970 T120 Triumph Bonneville. Rounding off the custom look are the exaggerated upward bend exhaust pipes flanking the machine. Hagest, recently interviewed, fondly recalls in September 1972 shipping the disassembled motorcycle via airfreight to John Bonham’s country estate called Old Hyde Farm at Cutnall Green in Worcestershire and assembling it for him on his property. One of Bonham’s passions was vintage cars and motorcycles. In Led Zeppelin’s documentary The Song Remains the Same (filmed the summer of 1973; released in 1976), Bonzo can be seen riding this “Sunset Tripper” in the English countryside during his memorable dream sequence. The motorcycle remained with the Bonham family since his untimely death in 1980 until 1988 when Jason Bonham sold it to the present owner. Since 1988, this notorious motorcycle has been displayed in a pizza parlor in Denmark until December 2014 when it was shipped to the United States. Measures 102 in. long x 56 in. tall. Mechanicals are untested and rubber grips have deteriorated. Overall, in very good vintage condition. Engine serial number: AD38939. Sold on a Bill of Sale.
$30,000 - $50,000

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http://www.invaluable.com/auction-lot/john-bonham-rsquo-s-custom-triumph-ldquo-sunset-1875-c-3f6460ead5

 

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I'm surprised Jason Bonham didn't inherit it in some way, or try and bargain it back.

he was/is a fan of motor cross so the interest in bikes is there-and it was his dad's

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On 6/11/2014 at 5:55 PM, Cecil. said:

Thanks, any idea how it ended up there, I just thought that it would end up in the hands of a collecter rather than hanging on a wall in a Swedish restaurant.

No offence to Swedish Zeppelin fans.

Where did Sweden get into this? I mean Aarhus is situated in Denmark!

 

On 6/11/2014 at 5:55 PM, Cecil. said:

Thanks, any idea how it ended up there, I just thought that it would end up in the hands of a collecter rather than hanging on a wall in a Swedish restaurant.

No offence to Swedish Zeppelin fans.

 

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So does anyone know what happened to the other 3...article says one was commissioned for each member of the band?

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Hopefully the accumulation of 25 years of pizza grease isn't going to raise the reserve, [if one exists].

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On 10/14/2015 at 8:56 PM, Rock Historian said:

I'm surprised Jason Bonham didn't inherit it in some way, or try and bargain it back.

he was/is a fan of motor cross so the interest in bikes is there-and it was his dad's

It was Jason Bonham who sold it to the current seller in the first place in 1988.

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8 hours ago, Fredbloggs said:

It was Jason Bonham who sold it to the current seller in the first place in 1988.

 

8 hours ago, Fredbloggs said:

It sold for $40,000 at the 2015 auction shown above.

:thumbsup:

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I got to sit on the bike at the winner's house. very nice. he complained about the winning price of course. hahah. cool bike

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To revive an old thread...

An earlier poster juxtiphi points out that the chopper in the Led Zeppelin film is not the same chopper sold at the auction. I think he's right, although the auction chopper is undoubtedly John Bonhams chopper, the chopper in the film doesn't look like it's the same chopper.

The motorcycle in the film has a Triumph 250 single cylinder engine, the motorcycle sold at the auction has a Triumph 650 twin cylinder engine and they are not easily interchangeable.

So, the chopper in the film is likely to be one of the other three built for Led Zeppelin by Ron Hagest at Triumph of Burbank.

Reading through one of the Zeppelin biographies, I don't remember which one,  it's written that in the late '70s, John Bonham gave away a chopper to be auctioned off for an English childrens charity, my guess is that bike was the one from the film.

In another, or maybe the same, biography, it's written that when they started filming the sequence someone, it could have been John Bonham, accidently rode the chopper through a hedge damaging it, so they continued filming with another chopper. I've often thought the rider in the film doesn't look much like John Bonham either, but he does look a lot like his brother Mick.

For me, the value of this chopper comes from it's first owner, not because it was in the film, so I wonder why it's represented as being the film chopper, when anyone with just a bit of knowledge of Triumph engines can see it probably isn't.

From my own research at least two of the four Led Zeppelin choppers had a Triumph 250 single cylinder engine and at least one, John Bonhams, had a Triumph 650 twin cylinder engine, but I don't know much more than that.

Could Ron Hagest or maybe Jason Bonham shed any light on any of this?

 

 

 

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9 hours ago, vivian james said:

To revive an old thread...

An earlier poster juxtiphi points out that the chopper in the Led Zeppelin film is not the same chopper sold at the auction. I think he's right, although the auction chopper is undoubtedly John Bonhams chopper, the chopper in the film doesn't look like it's the same chopper.

The motorcycle in the film has a Triumph 250 single cylinder engine, the motorcycle sold at the auction has a Triumph 650 twin cylinder engine and they are not easily interchangeable.

So, the chopper in the film is likely to be one of the other three built for Led Zeppelin by Ron Hagest at Triumph of Burbank.

Reading through one of the Zeppelin biographies, I don't remember which one,  it's written that in the late '70s, John Bonham gave away a chopper to be auctioned off for an English childrens charity, my guess is that bike was the one from the film.

In another, or maybe the same, biography, it's written that when they started filming the sequence someone, it could have been John Bonham, accidently rode the chopper through a hedge damaging it, so they continued filming with another chopper. I've often thought the rider in the film doesn't look much like John Bonham either, but he does look a lot like his brother Mick.

For me, the value of this chopper comes from it's first owner, not because it was in the film, so I wonder why it's represented as being the film chopper, when anyone with just a bit of knowledge of Triumph engines can see it probably isn't.

From my own research at least two of the four Led Zeppelin choppers had a Triumph 250 single cylinder engine and at least one, John Bonhams, had a Triumph 650 twin cylinder engine, but I don't know much more than that.

Could Ron Hagest or maybe Jason Bonham shed any light on any of this?

Actually, juxtiphi never said it wasn't the same bike used in The Song Remains the Same, he said it wasn't the same bike used in Easy Rider. The auction details specifically state the bike is the one used in The Song Remains the Same and that the Triumph 650 cc two-cylinder engine is from a 1970 T120 Triumph Bonneville. 

 

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Thanks for pointing that out.

Even so, the 2015 auction chopper doesn't appear to match the Led Zeppelin film chopper.

There are several photos on the internet of John Bonham sitting on a chopper in the corner of a garden with a wooden fence as a back drop. It's the garden at the front of his house in Newfield Road, West Hagley and I think these photos were taken by Richard Cole. The chopper he's sitting on has a Triumph 250 single cylinder engine and not the Triumph 650 twin cylinder of the auction bike. This only confirms that around that time at least two of the four choppers were in John Bonhams custody and nothing more than that.

But the chopper in the film matches the 'garden bike' photos and not several other internet photos of John Bonham sitting on the 650 twin cylinder bike that was auctioned in 2015.

Yes, the auction details do state that it is the bike used in the film and that it has a Triumph 650 two cylinder engine.

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18 hours ago, vivian james said:

Thanks for pointing that out.

Even so, the 2015 auction chopper doesn't appear to match the Led Zeppelin film chopper.

There are several photos on the internet of John Bonham sitting on a chopper in the corner of a garden with a wooden fence as a back drop. It's the garden at the front of his house in Newfield Road, West Hagley and I think these photos were taken by Richard Cole. The chopper he's sitting on has a Triumph 250 single cylinder engine and not the Triumph 650 twin cylinder of the auction bike. This only confirms that around that time at least two of the four choppers were in John Bonhams custody and nothing more than that.

But the chopper in the film matches the 'garden bike' photos and not several other internet photos of John Bonham sitting on the 650 twin cylinder bike that was auctioned in 2015.

Yes, the auction details do state that it is the bike used in the film and that it has a Triumph 650 two cylinder engine.

I could not find a frame of film from the movie that conclusively supports your assertion it has a Triumph 250 single cylinder engine as opposed to a Triumph 650 twin cylinder engine. 

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Triumph 2 Cylinder engine.jpg

john-bonham-led-zeppelin-chopper.jpg

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Thanks for taking the time to prepare these attachments. The photos show two different motorcycles.

The six photos from top to bottom:

Photo 1 is from the 2015 auction publicity, it's the Triumph 650 twin. It's John Bonhams bike with his symbol on the sissy bar.

Photo 2 is the same Triumph 650 twin, I don't know the provenance of this photo.

Photos 3 & 4 are stills from the film, this motorcycle has a Triumph T25 250 single cylinder engine. The rider bears more of a resemblance to brother Mick Bonham than John Bonham.

Photo 5 is a Triumph twin cylinder engine but not the same as fitted to John Bonhams chopper. The photo shows what is known as a "pre-unit" engine meaning the gearbox is not integral with the engine, this engine had it's origins in the 1930s and was current until around 1962. John Bonhams Triumph 650 has a "unit" engine dating from 1970, the gearbox is part of the engine. There are other differences.

Photo 6 taken in John Bonhams front yard shows the chopper with the Triumph T25T 250 single cylinder engine. This is likely to be the chopper ridden in the film.

The original builder of the four choppers has put some effort into making the 250 single appear to be a 650 twin by fabricating an extra exhaust outlet at the point where the exhaust pipe emerges from the cylinder head giving the impression that it has two exhausts and therefore two cylinders. This wouldn't be hard to do as the fabrication would be on the pipe and not the engine. The whole left side exhaust and silencer might even be dummys.

I mentioned that at least two of the four choppers had a 250 single cylinder engine and as there is only one 650 twin accounted for there may have been three 250s.

Back in 1972, in England, a full motorcycle test had to be passed to ride a motorcycle of more than 250cc on the road. I don't know if anyone from Led Zeppelin had passed this test, maybe only John Bonham, possibly Robert Plant too. Jimmy Page, definitely not. JPJ I don't know. But a motorcycle of 250cc or less could be ridden by anyone with a car licence along with some restrictions such as not carrying a pillion passenger.

My guess is that the two or three 250cc engined choppers were built with this in mind. Most probably, by the time the four choppers turned up in England, some or maybe all of the other band members had lost interest anyway and John Bonham ended up with more than one of them at his house in West Hagley.

With a bit of luck there will be a photo of a Triumph T25 motorcycle with this post and this is what the donor of the 250cc engine would have looked like. The builder of the choppers was a Triumph dealer and would have had these bikes on his showroom floor. They were popular in Southern California at the time.

Why did I latch onto this?

Because there's another photo on the internet taken in the same West Hagley front yard with John Bonham and a pre-teen Jason Bonham sitting on the chopper, but it's reversed so it appears as a mirror image. Being fairly familiar with Triumph motorcycles I couldn't work out what I was looking at until I flipped the image and then it made more sense. Then I noticed the exhaust pipes (headers) looked way too close to each other for a 650 twin cylinder engine. A bit of research led me to the Triumph 250 single cylinder engine which matched in every way apart from the exhaust pipe.

That's how I came to work out there were two Bonham choppers and the auction one doesn't match the film one.

 

 

 

 

T25T.jpg

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