Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Broyhill Premier Brochures

During my time of collecting, buying, and selling vintage furniture, I have acquired original Broyhill Brasilia and Broyhill Emphasis brochures that came with the furniture from the factory/furniture store. For a while, my parents had a large collection of Emphasis stuff furnishing their house but I never had anything from the Premier line(s) myself. Until now. My girlfriend and I have collected eight or nine Saga pieces for our bedroom. After the move to our new house I found my Emphasis and Brasilia brochures and thought it would be cool to frame these with a Sculptra and Saga brochure as well. The problem is, I don't have the latter two ephemera. I searched the internet, high and low, and found amazing scans of the Sculptra brochure thanks to the Mad For Mid Century blog. I still haven't found the Saga brochure. If anyone has one they want to let go, I'd love to have an original. I'd even be happy if someone would scan it and send it to me, 

Anyway, here are scans of my Emphasis and Brasilia advertisements. Hopefully someone out there can help me out with the Saga version of these!

Monday, May 29, 2017

Choppers, Frank Lloyd Wright and Snapshots from a Small Town

It was a little after lunchtime when the fog started rolling in, turning the gray sky grayer and the cool day colder. This can be expected in San Francisco, but today I felt the urge to do something about it—by hitting the road.

I recently got my 1970 Harley-Davidson XLCH back up and running, and I figured there would be no better way to spend my pre-Memorial Day Sunday than riding it north and seeing what I could find. There wasn’t really much of a plan—just to check out the Frank Lloyd Wright-designed Marin County Civic Center and hopefully one thing would lead to another. With a backpack loaded with tools and a tank full of gas, I pointed the Avon Speedmaster towards San Rafael and opened up the throttle.

Other than a short camping trip a couple weeks ago, the Ironhead has had very little freeway mileage. But that was all forgotten as I climbed through the gears, moving between cars with plenty of passing power. The big Mikuni carb sucked the fresh ocean air as I crossed the Golden Gate, pipes snarling as I rolled past clumps of tourists that lined the eastern edge of the bridge. I wished the Golden Gate a happy birthday (it turned 80 this weekend) and told it that it was lookin’ good.

Less than a mile later, I felt the air get warmer. I could see golden hills in the distance and I sensed that I really was headed in the right direction. Before I knew it, my exit was up and I rumbled down the off ramp towards the Marin County Civic Center.

The Civic Center and the Hall of Justice were the only government buildings designed by Wright that were ever built. Construction on the former ended in 1962, while the latter was completed the same year that my Harley came off the line in Milwaukee. Although I had visited this mid-century marvel once before with my parents, I was once again take aback by the level of detail that Wright incorporated into every building on the property. His initial vision was to create structures that would “melt into the sunburnt hills.” Fifty-five years later, I’d say he succeeded; his designs have undoubtedly stood the test of time.

From the Civic Center, I rode through the winding roads of China Camp State Park. I passed the expansive salt marsh and even saw a handful of deer darting between the trees. Then I moved west. Past cars and trucks and big houses and small houses and businesses with plants growing on the roof. Storefronts and strip malls, cafes and patios. Going nowhere in particular and enjoying every minute of it. After about a dozen miles, I spotted what looked like a marquee off in the distance. “FAIRFAX” boasted the neon sign in a deco-style typeface. Not only was it informing me that I had come across the Fairfax Theatre—a movie house that was built in 1950—it also let me know that I was entering a the heart of a town of the same name.

I parked my bike just off the main drag and spent the remainder of the afternoon strolling around Fairfax, enjoying the weather as well as all of the mid-century buildings and signage in the downtown area. I sat down on a bench dedicated to the region’s mountain biking pioneers and watched the scenes unfold around me. Two children struggle to ride a yellow tandem bicycle down a busy sidewalk in front of a place called “Hairfax.” A mother and her teenage son realize the have to go pick up their laundry and quickly change direction. A man with his arm in a sling waits for someone to show up (eventually she does). Pre-teens rip by on scooters while an older kid lags behind on a BMX bike that’s clearly too small. The sun sinks lower in the sky. A digital signboard at a bank indicates that the temperature is now just below 70. It feels like summer is right around the corner—and I smile.—Joey Ukrop

Side Note: Both the bike and I made it home without any problems—almost. On my camping trip, I had a problem with the oil tank rattling loose on the freeway. That problem was fixed with some high-quality hardware. This time around, I pulled into my driveway and went to put the bike in the garage, only to realize the oil tank cap had disappeared somewhere between San Rafael and San Francisco! Don't worry—a new one is on its way. 

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Think Tank: An Extra Degree of Era Correctness

Even the mosaic noticed a change. 

The title may not be entirely true, because there was rust in nearly every era we seek to recreate. Like Neil Young famously put it, “Rust never sleeps,” but I’m proud to say I’ve finally put it to rest on my longest-standing motorcycle project. When I bought my CL125 in 2013, it was in barn fresh condition with a mere 103 miles on the clock. There was a little rust and a lot of dust, but it was a running 1974 model and I couldn’t be more excited to bring it home. Everything on it was perfectly worn and featured excellent patina—but the gas tank had lost a great deal of paint through the years. That didn’t stop me from riding the bike as-is, racking up close to 2,000 miles on the East Coast, in the Midwest and finally out West. It saw everything from Virginia sands to Michigan mud to San Francisco’s hilly terrain—and it handled them all with ease.

A few weeks ago, my brother alerted me of a SL125 tank for sale on eBay. The color was right (metallic red), the price was fair and I pulled the trigger. Just as I had hoped, it slid right on and had my 125 looking much like it did more than 40 years ago. And because I can never leave well enough alone, I also fixed the clutch handle, damaged foot peg and gave the bike a thorough cleaning. (The chrome CL100 exhaust pipe that I had gotten as a graduation present also helped clean up the look.) Like I said, good as better than new.

The CL125 is the perfect bike for ripping around downtown San Francisco. Now I’m glad that it looks the part.

Before, feat. San Francisco  
What year is it? 
SL on a CL 
In the Haight. 
Beep's Burgers, Ocean Avenue, San Francisco, California. 

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Great gifts galore!

A few weeks ago I celebrated my 28th year as a real life human being. I have been quite fortunate throughout the years, having many amazing birthdays. This year was no exception. I spent the weekend of my b-day with family and friends. That alone would have been enough of a birthday present for me, but my parents, sister, brother-in-law, and girlfriend got me some really cool gifts. I think they are cool enough to share here.