Transcontinental Significance

This was the headline from the July 5, 1917 edition of Motorcycle and Bicycle Illustrated. Those words got me thinking about what we judge to be significant within the context of our time and place. For Alan and his contemporaries, the natural world was to be concurred by the might of human engineering. This week, as we cross Montana and North Dakota at 75 mph, turbo diesel and 7-speed transmission purring without complaint, we look out at the magnificent prairie and consider a lone rider on a dirt trail 100 years ago-almost incredible. Much of the United States was without paved roads then….just sand, dirt or mud.  We pay tribute to Alan with this Cannonball adventure.

Transcontinental Significance

Take a look at the map as shown in the Pacific Motorcyclist and Western Wheelman  below:

Bedell Record Map

Heading East from Vashon

The Bedell Tribute Henderson has been loaded into the Flint Works Sprinter,  ready to travel East. In the van are tools and spare parts packed into tubs, riding gear for conditions expected to include heat, humidity, rain, cold and even snow! The goal is to visit some family and friends while crossing the Northern tier of states on I-90/I-94/I-80. We plan on wrenching with the 4th Coast boys in upstate NY for a couple of days prior to arriving in Portland, Maine on September 6th. This should be fun!

Building the Bedell Tribute Henderson

Locating an original 1917 frame was a challenge but the Henderson community is a good group and here is what we found.

Getting the frame straight, forks repairs welded and machining complete with 4th Coast Fours

The beauty of nickel plating

Rolling work of art

The Bedell Tribute Special

Modifications for the Cannonbal focused on comfort, reliability and ease of repair while on the road

The goal prior to the race: as close to 1000 mile riding on our 37 square mile island to trouble shoot anything that might break before the start from Portland, Maine