Classic Bike Haven Opens
As the A3 snakes out of Guildford heading south a small row of white fronted buildings appear off to the left, the final dwelling is now home to one man’s vision. A haven for the connoisseur of classic two wheel transport has been assembled by Miklos Salamon and it contains his view of all the bikes that made a difference, the ones that changed the rules, built new industries for some whilst putting others to the sword. It is personal but available to the public and varies from other collections as every one of these machines is taxed, tested and ridden regularly. Miklos, better known as Mike is a bike fanatic whose aim was to seek out the best, across the world if necessary and bring them all together. Beautifully prepared the collection had to contain every engine type and cover the post war era to the 70’s, these were the machines that had been either owned or lusted after over the decades and had made a significant contribution to the evolution of the motorcycle. Mike explained ‘the oldest bike in the collection is a stunning 1940 Indian; that one came from Ireland’. ‘It is heavy and difficult to ride anyway and quite dangerous around Guildford town centre but the collection would not be complete without one’. ‘The smallest machine is a Honda 450 ‘Black bomber’ that came from France where someone painted it red’! Mike see’s the Honda as a very significant machine; he explains ‘if the CB750 was the nail in the coffin for the British bike industry the ‘Black bomber’ was the hearse that brought the coffin’.
Mike came to the UK in 1957; the family were forced to flee their home in Budapest, Hungary after his father fought against the occupying Soviet forces who eventually used air strikes, tanks and artillery against the revolutionaries. Offered refuge in the UK the family found themselves in Newcastle, ‘my father was a miner and we had a mine in our back garden’ Mike smiles as he remembers. Moving to South African in 1963 Mike followed his father into the mining industry for 40 years, he returned to the UK in 1999.
Whilst the collection includes Mikes view on the most significant machines it also takes you on a two wheeled time travel but these machines were purchased for a more personal reason, because they were Mike’s choice. ‘I don’t like fairings’ he told me ‘I want to see the entire bike’. ‘Also every machine has to be restored to the highest standard and ready to go at any time, they must be ridden’. Moving to this building allowed Mike to assemble his collection in one location and get custom bike builder and restorer Alan Wells to join his project with Dave Rose who concentrates on the restorations. Unit 6, Stag Hill is a large commercial property and whilst home to the collection the project will hopefully fund itself with the small selection of custom, bespoke café racers and hand-picked classic machines on sale, all prepared or in fact built in house. 2 Wheels Miklos also enjoy the very niche franchises of Metisse Motorcycles UK and the Ilmore powered V twin Viper customs from the US. Opening event takes place on Saturday 9th August between 4-8pm, one top tip is take the small slip road from the A3 immediately after ‘American Golf’ don’t miss it or you will have to keep going to the next exit.
Classic-Motorbikes.net hopes to bring more individual details of many machines in Mike’s collection, let us know your machine of choice. I asked Mike his favourite and got a very political answer ‘I love them all; my wife’s favourite is the Z900, best to ride is the Z1300, the Laverda is the sexiest and the boys in the shop love the Indian’.
BMW R69S-1965 Kawasaki KH500-1971 Suzuki GT750 1972 Honda CX500-1978 Honda Gold Wing-1977 Suzuki GSX 1100 Katana-1983 Yamaha XS 1100E 1978 Suzuki GS1000S-1979 Kawasaki Z900 1976 Honda 750F 1972 Ducati 750GT-1974 MV Augasta 750S-1973 Moto Guzzi 850T-1975 Laverda 10003CL-1980 Benelli 750sei-1977 Honda CB450 (Black Bomber)-1968 Norvil built Norton Commando 850 BSA Rocket 3-1969 Triumph X-75 Hurricane-1972 Triumph Bonneville-1970 AJS 500-1958 Ariel Square 4-1957 Vincent Series C Rapide-1949 Sunbeam S8-1957 Indian Four-1940 Honda CBX1000-1979 Kawasaki Z1300
Honda CB750K1-1971 Yamaha VMax-1994 Triumph T160 Trident-1975 Kawasaki W650-2003 Triumph Bonneville-2003
BMW customs built in house to owners’ specification include the ‘Steam K’ derived from the K Series engine/chassis and the 1986 or ‘Purple Poison’ using the RO80 from 1978. Future projects already underway include a Harley Sportster custom and a further 2 BMW customs.
The Steve McQueen Metisse desert racer and the Viper Diamondback 2491cc V twin are both on display. Opening days for public admiration are to be Thursday, Friday and Saturday, private viewings of sale machines can be arranged anytime.
Miklos Salamon Email:
2WheelsMiklos Unit 6, Stag Hill, A3 Garages, Guildford, Surrey. GU2 7RZ