Guest post from Gareth Howes of Double Six.
They say everything in America is bigger and better, and the auctions seem no different.
This week will see Las Vegas host the world's biggest motorbike auction over five days .
The Mecum January sale this year has 2000, mostly desirable, motorbikes up for grab, so let’s have a look at some of the more interesting lots.
1962 Harley Davidson KR racer
Mike Wolfe of American Pickers fame is bringing over 70 bikes to the sale. This is one (top photo, number 74) of dozens from his collection I’d happily rehome. The bike boasts a proud racing history including Indiana State Champion. Less than a 100 made each year, so you won’t be bumping into another too often.
1974 Harley Davidson XR750
With only three XR750 flat track bikes available at this auction I have chosen this one as it appears to be the most honest (all views are my own) and the XR750 I’d like to take home. It’s an early Ali head with Ceriani* forks. The bike looks great and looks ready to be ridden. Will fewer XR750 available at this auction see better results than last years bargains?
Wood Rotax Harley-Davidson
My pick of the five days. The bike I want, correction, NEED in my life. This painfully rare bike comes from the Estenson collection so it’s not a surprise he is bringing what I regard as the most desirable flat track bike to the auction.
Built by the late, great Ron Wood and commissioned by Harley-Davidson, only a handful were made and raced. The prices of Wood bikes have increased over the last few years so could we see this surpass expectations.
1997 Honda CR500
Yes, a widowmaker, arm stretcher and death machine. Remember when these where plentiful and fun? These days sees the CR500 elevated to an almost cult status in the world of off-road bikes. With clean, low-hour examples recently trading for five figures in Europe could we see that repeated in this sale.
Staracer Yamaha 360
With paintwork as 70s as a disco ball in flares, you have to notice this bike! Each side of the bike done in a contrasting colour (perhaps the owner couldn’t decide on a single colour). Looks to be a well-put-together bike that I’d like to ride. Will be interesting to see what this goes for as Staracers are seldomly seen for sale let alone at auction. This could be a good buy for a competitive bike to race in Europe.
READ ABOUT Staracer history and a beautiful Staracer XS650 frame in Sideburn 51
1986 Christmas Edition Honda Z50
Imagine waking up to this under the tree on Christmas Day! Somewhat of a cult bike in the world of minis, the Christmas Edition is up there with being the most desirable. The rise in popularity in the last five years in minibikes is almost crazy. Will we see this being bought by someone for a lucky child or their own inner child.
That’s my six interesting picks for the auction. I know I’ve missed super rare and more prestigious bikes, but I hope this shows the variety of the auction.
This will be the first time I make the pilgrimage to Mecums in Vegas and can’t wait to witness the madness in person. I have my eye on several bikes at the auction, at least some of which I will be hoping to bring back to the UK, but let’s see how the cards are dealt. If you’d like to watch the madness of Mecums you can do so for free live on their website. You need to pay for a paddle to bid and prove your finances so allow time if something has caught your eye!