Many years ago – actually many, many years ago – I bought my first vehicle. At the time, I was 18 years old and I most definitely did not have my parent’s permission – in point of fact, my Dad had expressly said ‘no’ to the idea. The vehicle in question was a 1966 Yamaha YA6 125 cc motorcycle which was in much less than ‘good’ mechanical shape, but did at least run and was plated. The school friend I bought it from coached me on how to drive it – driving along side of me on his motorbike down Bayview Avenue north of Richmond Hill, shouting out ‘shift’ whenever I had to change gear as I had never driven a standard before. This was complicated by the fact that at that time, Bayview wasn’t really paved and was a mix of gravel and pot holes, as well as the fact that the shift lever was missing and in its place was a pair of vise grip pliers ! I also didn’t have a driver’s license valid for a motorbike, although I did have insurance. At any rate, I managed to drive it to a friend’s house where I hid the bike as I couldn’t take it home. This worked well for a few weeks, but eventually it leaked gasoline on his driveway and his father demanded it disappear, so I had to take it home and face the music from my Dad.
I put a lot of miles on that bike, and even took my driver’s license test on it eventually in early winter and in several inches of snow – not my choice actually. I’d been caught by a friendly police officer who gave me a bit of a break as I did have a drivers license for a car – he gave me a couple of weeks to take the test etc., and it was just unfortunate that we had an early snowfall. At any rate, lots of good memories, including driving it up to King City to see the girl I’d eventually marry.
I’d been watching for a decent YA6 to come up for sale over the past year or so but they were all in the US and generally too far away to make buying them feasible. When I recently found this one (photo to the left) near my brother’s place on the east coast of the US, I jumped at the opportunity as we owed them a visit and as well we were going to be ‘in the area’ for our son’s graduation in Ontario so it seemed like a great opportunity. My brother was good enough to pick the bike up after I bought it, and then store it at his place (which is a lovely home) till we were able to get there this week.
The bike is in really good shape for a 42 year old machine . It runs, although it probably could use a bit of a tuneup, the paint is good and to cut a long story short, I’m really happy with it.
Now all we need to do is get it home !