Thursday, November 20, 2008

NOVEGRO SWAP MEET, MILAN, 2008

By Vicki Smith

[I mentioned Vicki in my writeup of the Motogiro America event last July; she works for Ducati North America, and was the first woman to ride the Italian 'Giro. She sent me these photos from her Ducati website - pd'o]

In Italy it seems like there is always a swap meet somewhere. They pop up in town squares and out in fields like the sunflowers that seem to grow everywhere. But the really big ones are something to see, acres and acres of moto "stuff" some so rare you never thought it would be possible, all bracketed by piles of things not worth the benzina to haul them. I love the atmosphere of the dealings, the chatter in Italian, the smell of two stroke oil and sounds of motors being fired up for potential buyers. It's a photo safari as well, everywhere you look there's something to share. Oh, and the food! Best porchetta sandwiches and french fries you can imagine, sugar dipped fried dough and crepes with Nutella, it's all integral to the experience. Join me for a walk around Novegro....
The action begins in the parking lot.  If I saw this in the US it would merit a 10 minute stare.  Here I pass with just a glance, it's just an advertisement for the wonders inside the gate.
The action begins in the parking lot. If I saw this in the US it would merit a 10 minute stare. Here I pass with just a glance, it's just an advertisement for the wonders inside the gate.Once inside there are vendors for acres and acres, as well as a few large buildings full. The merchandise varies widely. Old gas tanks and really expensive brakes might not make sense as a business plan anyplace but here.
Once inside there are vendors for acres and acres, as well as a few large buildings full. The merchandise varies widely. Old gas tanks and really expensive brakes might not make sense as a business plan anyplace but here.
Little bikes were an industry in Italy for many years. This 50cc Malagutti, while needing a restoration to display it's full little bike sexiness, is a good example of the sort of gems hidden in the Novegro junk pile

Little bikes were an industry in Italy for many years. This 50cc Malagutti, while needing a restoration to display it's full little-bike sexiness, is a good example of the sort of gems hidden in the Novegro junk pile.
Repairs are often done on the spot.
Repairs are often done on the spot.
It's normal to see things that are impossibly rare

It's normal to see things that are impossibly rare [70's Bimota KB1 bodywork...]I got my motorcycle license on one of these. It's a 125cc Cagiva Freccia, a 2 stroke Paso wanna be, if I'd seen this in the USA I would have bought it.


I got my motorcycle license on one of these. It's a 125cc Cagiva Freccia, a 2-stroke Paso wanna be, if I'd seen this in the USA I would have bought it.

This photo cannot begin to do this fully restored beauty justice

This photo cannot begin to do this fully restored beauty justice [Harley-Davidson Aermacchi 250cc two-stroke 'Pasolini' racer]
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Quite a few Scramblers this year and most of them were nice, an indication this model has been a popular restoration choice for a few years now.

Quite a few Scramblers this year and most of them were nice, an indication this model has been a popular restoration choice for a few years now

Knock, knock! Lambretta delivery.

Knock, knock! Lambretta delivery.

Some vendors had better stuff than others [Love those 70's Italian colors...]

Some vendors had better stuff than others

One Vespa SS90 small frame 'Dummy Tank' would be unusual. Two is a photo opportunity.

One Vespa SS90 small frame Dummy Tank”would be unusual. Two is a photo oppertunity


These Motobis are for some the Motogiro Holy Grail. A little hard to source parts for but the 'egg' motor bikes are fast and reliable, really perfect for 5 hard days of mountain riding.

These Motobi's are for some the Motogiro holy grail. A little hard to source parts for but the egg motor”bikes are fast and reliable, really perfect for 5 hard days of mountain riding

ItomsItom's

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Did you know KTM made scooters? This is a KTM Poony. Started on the first kick, it was so ugly it was cute, I tried to buy it but with no papers getting it back into the US has become too difficult. After a long talk with my shipper, I decided to pass


Did you know KTM made scooters? This is a KTM Poony. Started on the first kick, it was so ugly it was cute, I tried to buy it but with no papers getting it back into the US has become too difficult. After a long talk with my shipper, I decided to pass [You need a craftier shipper...]

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[Little toys to go with the big ones]

Rare as can be, these two Segales were part of a beautiful display that had no indication why or who was displaying them. We didn't care, it was all really cool to see

Rare as can be, these two Segale Hondas were part of a beautiful display that had no indication why or who was displaying them. We didn't care, it was all really cool to see.

This Norton Dustbin was unusual, unlike swap meets in the USA where British bikes are well represented, here they were found in much smaller numbers

This Norton Dustbin was unusual; unlike swap meets in the USA where British bikes are well represented, here they are found in much smaller numbers. [Not that Manxes are common here either!]

Aprilia Moto 6.5 and yard gnomes. Oddly, this is a really perfect combination

Aprilia Moto 6.5 and yard gnomes. Oddly, this is a really perfect combination!

The vendors went all the way out into the field. Like a Sunday walk down a country lane, moto junk added

The vendors went all the way out into the field. Like a Sunday walk down a country lane, moto
junk added.



This Ducati RT was a really nice example. Prices on these have gone crazy lately. Really desirable to dirt bike guys, with very few left that look like this one, most have been sold for parts because of the desmo head motor. With virtually no availability of the specific parts they need the natural
result is.....
This Ducati RT was a really nice example. Prices on these have gone crazy lately. Really desirable to dirt bike guys, with very few left that look like this one, most have been sold for parts because of the desmo head motor. With virtually no availability of the specific parts they need the natural result is.....

Prices like this (and higher!).

Prices like this (and higher)



















Hand formed Moto Guzzi race bike tank, you would think was super rare, right?

Hand formed Moto Guzzi race bike tank, you would think was super rare, right?







Hand formed tanks are less of a lost art here

Hand formed tanks are less of a lost art here

I could not get the image out of my head of Sarah Palin in a tight skirt and spike heeled knee boots flying down an Italian side street on this, when I saw it. Wolf hunting Italian style!

I could not get the image out of my head of Sarah Palin in a tight skirt and spike heeled knee boots flying down an Italian side street on this, when I saw it.  Wolf hunting Italian style!

And then there was this gem; you basic $100,000 Ducati single.

And then there was this gem. Your basic $100,000   Ducati single

Pretty Moto Morinis all in a row.

Pretty Moto Morini's all in a row

Rare Ducati 100 Sport

Rare Ducati 100 Sport

Need more space? Just park 'em right in the middle of the row


Need more space?  Just park 'em right in the middle of the row

The end of the line, three days of bargain hunting come to an end. Until next year!The end of the line, three days of bargin hunting come to an end. Until next year!  Vicki Smith

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

having the next three days off i have a mind to photoshop vicki smiths logos of her pictures

your sister site? mirror site velogent , he puts out works of art ( which i download , steal with abondon for my archives ) and even your half assed snaps there never a logo , it down grades your site to even post these , though i did like the norton with a dustbin , got to see the braces which is a intrest to me , pre annorack known as a breather throught the mouth lol dave rant over

Scott said...

I had no idea that woman was so versed in motorcycles.

I have bumper into here the last 5 years working the Ducati tent at Mid-Ohio for the super bike race. Then again at Indy, etc.........

Great to see the people who work for Ducati really are Ducatisti, and general all around motorcycle lovers!!