< AllMoto's Motorcycle Investor mag


allmoto logo

Motorcycle Investor mag

Subscribe to our free email news


Shed Crash

(by Guy 'Guido' Allen, July 2022)




Shed dominoes – how a minor cock-up led to a big repair bill...but we all came up smiling in the end


Here's what happened: I parked the 1975 Gold Wing a little clumsily. Next morning, eldest daughter Ms M jnr wandered into my office at the back of the house and said (looking for the most gentle possible language), "Your bikes don't look right, maybe something has gone wrong." What she might also have said was, "Brace yourself, it's a classic cock-up."


The issue? The Wing had fallen over. And the end result was so strange, it took a moment to understand when Muggins wandered out to survey the problem.


In fact, the Gold Wing was on its side, so too was the Honda Blackbird, the Daytona 1200 and the Suzuki Hayabusa. It was a sight to behold. Just for a moment, I wondered if we were both imagining things. Four large motorcycles having a little rest. Maybe it was a bad dream and we'd all wake up and laugh about it. Err, no.

Yep, four premium motorcyles were down and it was a surreal sight. Just a little too weird to comprehend. The only good news was the Triumph Super III had somehow missed the event and was still upright. Which somehow made it even more weird.


Dammit. Thinking back to the night before, I recalled parking the Gold Wing, wondering if it felt stable enough. Nah, she'll be right. Wrong!

It had settled on its suspension overnight and something happened to tip its balance just enough for it to keel over. With near-300 kilos at its disposal, it developed enough energy to take out three others. Yes, I should have taken more care...no point in worrying about it, we now had a problem to deal with.

Shit. The first response was to panic and try to lift them all immediately, but after a quick scan, the panorama of four expensive toys on their side was too difficult to take in. This was a good time to walk back into the house, make a coffee and calm down. Things weren't going to change much in the minutes it took to settle, get the caffeine hit and deal with the grief.

Suitably caffeined, we had to face reality, march back out into the yard, survey the appalling vista and come up with some sort of plan. One by one, muggins levered the bikes to vertical (now there is a solid morning of exercise) and shuffled them far enough away from each other to survey the damage. At first glance, it looked pretty good.


But that was deceptive. In fact, the result was mixed. The Blackbird had pieces broken on the cockpit section of the fairing, but was otherwise okay. Still, that was a central piece and potentially a major pain to fix.


The Daytona 1200? It copped the worst damage, with two major breaks in the cockpit section, plus a chunk missing from the right-hand sidecover.


There was good news: The Hayabusa was unscathed. How? Who knows? Oh and of course the Gold Wing (the bastard instigator of all this) also got off without a scratch. So it could have been worse.

Right, damage assessed, it was time to get on to the interweb and see what it was going to cost to fix the damage.



The Blackbird was theoretically the easiest to source bits for, as it's recent enough and sold in sufficient numbers for aftermarket suppliers to take an interest. Full bodywork kits are readily available for under $1000 delivered to Australia. More than likely made in China, there was going to be a question mark over the quality, but it was the quickest and easiest solution. So hit the order button.

A giant box soon turned up, which included a complete bodywork kit. As anyone who has had paint repaired will know, though I had ordered black there are several different shades of same, so the outfit was unpacked with a little trepidation. I'd prefer to replace just the cockpit piece, but, if it was a bad match, then replacing the entire bodywork was an option.

Incredibly, it was a great match. The material was a little thinner than the original, and there were some subtle differences, but really no cause for complaint. Had this been a concours build, we would have taken a different approach.


Disassembly and replacement took a couple of hours, with some need for caution, as there were several fiddly aspects, right down to ensuring the air from the twin  intakes from the snout was correctly set up to feed the oil cooler. The aftermarket unit didn't have some of the internal fittings quite correct, but adapting it was easy enough.

One of a few details that weren't right was the Honda logo on the replacement was bigger and a little more garish, but really there was no cause for complaint, given the cost.


I kept the original cockpit shell in case anyone ever gets enthusiastic enough to restore it back to stock. Overall, the match was surprisingly good (lucky, I reckon) and panel fit very close without being quite as tight as original. All up, a good result for the money.



Then we came to the Triumph. Forget getting aftermarket kits – none available and this was a matter of tracking down used fairing parts and praying they were okay. In this case we bought second-hand pieces. The Daytona 900 panels (bodywork is identical to the 1200) we bought out of Europe were a perfect paint match – so kudos to Hinckley for being consistent with its paint.


Fitting that central piece was much simpler than for the Honda – far fewer components and a much more basic design.


We however got a surprise with the replacement sidecover. The paint was a great match and it was off a 900 Daytona rather than a 1200. What I didn't know was the black dye from the 900 stickers bleeds into the paint and essentially made the transition from 900 to 1200 sidecover a no-go. Really?


So we had two options: Repaint the second-hand sidecover, or track down another from a yellow 1200. It was about the same cost and I went for the latter. The item (from the USA) was a bit shabby when it turned up, however a careful clean-up and polish fixed that.


All up, I reckon we spent about $2500. An expensive screw-up, but it could have been a lot worse.


Since then, I've sold the Gold Wing. I'd like to say the shed crash had nothing to do with that, but I'd be lying – the incident kind of poisoned what was already an awkward relationship. Yes, I know it wasn't the bike's fault, but these things become personal.

And now I'm much more careful about how everything is parked before I tuck them in for the night...

More features here

See the bikes in our shed


Produced by AllMoto abn 61 400 694 722
Privacy: we do not collect cookies or any other data.

allmoto logo

Try our books...

Travels with Guido

twitter allmoto








Email newsletter


News archive


Our Bikes stories

Travels with Guido columns


About AllMoto

Email me