I'd like it to be reliable for 1000 miles?


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VOC Member
Evening All,

I've read the books (KTB/Richardson/FYO/ATY and the Riders Handbook). I'm going to change the oil and filter, adjust chains, grease everything and check valves together with anything else I can think needs doing and pack myself some essential spares listed below. Bike is a Rapide - 12 volt, electronic ignition.

Tools (of course)
AA Card in case all else fails
Tube Repair Kit
Nuts, Bolts and washers
Cable ties
Solderless nipples
Chain links

Not as adventurous as our "Shadowman" I plan on "only" doing somewhere around 1000 miles for Manx GP week.

I did nearly 450 in a day to York and back for the Riders Rally with no real problems so I imagine that it should be no big issue - and there'll be plenty of folks around for help and advice on the Island if anything goes wrong - still feels like a bit of an adventure though!

I'd be interested in any hard won tips Vincent owners can offer on things to check, not to overlook and perhaps that little gem of a spare that I should take with me.




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Yer ready! I took fewer spares than that 3 years ago to go to the North American Rally, 950 miles each way.

Maybe Tony Cording will chime in on his prep for riding from Vancouver to the Rally (2700 miles)?


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VOC Member
;)I did 750 miles on a weekend with basic tools & a mobile (cell) phone!!
Cable ties & strong thin wire are good spares to carry. Why carry a spare mag if you don't carry a degree wheel? I don't particularly want to change a tyre on the side of the road so I would use the phone instead........
I assisted someone change a generator in their Riley a few months ago & the only "spare" I carried was the most important..... Swarfega!

Ian Savage

VOC Vice President
VOC Member
The longer you own and ride your Vin the fewer spares you take, I've done some very long tours, the last was Estonia and back, all I needed during that trip was a throttle cable abutment, which I didn’t have of course. I used some roadside scrap to fashion a replacement that was still on the bike 6 months later.
With VOCS, Conways and Vinparts on hand to post parts, a copy for the members list, (Graham where’s the new one!!) a phone and credit card there’s not much you can’t sort out.
Then there’s always the recovery services the classic insurance companies provide, I can vouch for Footman James's service having tested it from France to home, no roadside repair for a seized Series A no matter what spares you carry!!
PS Nice picture of Colin Manning praying to Amanda’s Comet at the A rally.

Tony Cording

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VOC Member
1000 Reliable miles

When I rode my Prince to the 50th Anniversary Rally in Pittsburgh, (round trip approx. 5,600 miles), I didn't take one spare. True story. Why? My mate John McDougall took everything I would need. But - I did take a second credit card!

On a more serious note, believe it or not we didn't have any problems there or back, although we both had our speedos fail. John built both engines, so that accounts for the 99.99% reliability. Not bad for 50+ year old bikes.

The return trip of approx.2,772 miles was completed in 6 days, mileage per day as follows: Day 1 - 560, Day 2 - 256, Day 3 - 571, Day 4 - 494, Day 5 - 561, Day 6 - 330. Also check out the Vanc. Section Review nthis month, Robert and Kathy Watson have just done a 3,000 mile round trip to California and back, 2 up - full luggage. So take heart Stuart, well prepped Vincents are reliable and have long legs.

Tony Cording

Piston Pete

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VOC Member
1000 reliable miles

The longest trip my humble comet and I have done is Dublin to spain/portugal -2300miles in a week and a bit .Spares...origial mag (bth fitted prior to journey) ,cables,tubes ,spark plugs x6 (yes I know I only need 1),spare chain,riders handbook,duct tape,cable ties. Did I need any of them .....no!!......will I bring them on the next big trip ....yes!!:)


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VOC Member
If you want to make your bike reliable for thousands of miles, the first thing to do, is put thousands of miles on it. That way you will learn what you need to know.


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VOC Member
1000 miles reliable

Take a can of chain spray 'cos if it is wet then the chain may dry out.

Go with a positive attitude and no matter what happens you'll find a way to keep rolling.

Don't spend too much time tinkering with the bike every day. I think I was guilty of that, but there again it was either that or talk to Graham! (I'm joking Graham was great company)

Stop every 80 miles or so. Fill up with petrol and don't be in a hurry to get back on the bike. Take a few minutes. You will get further in a day and enjoy it more if you take frequent breaks.

If your neck gets sore its probably 'cos your going too fast for too long. 70mph was about enough for me.