Saturday, October 22, 2011

Eldorado Barn Find

Well not actually a barn, more like a garage. My buddy Todd got a line on a '72 Moto Guzzi Eldorado 850 back in July. This is a true survivor bike, it had not been modified in any way since new. Todd was friends with the owner, who bought the bike new way back in'72.He rode the bike for a few years, and as with a lot of people, parked it after a small accident. That was way back in 1986, and it has stood silent in a corner of his garage ever since. Todd's friend passed away this spring. His widow, not knowing what to do with the bike turned to Todd. They weighed several options, and decided the best course of action would be to sell the bike to Todd for a price they both felt comfortable with.
I went with him to check out the bike, and could tell, under all that dust and cob webs there lurked one fine example of a vintage Guzzi. The bike showing only 13,616 original miles bristled with promise. We loaded her up and headed for the hills.

This is exactly how we found the bike and where it had rested for the last quarter century. Todd's friend always intended to get his old Eldorado back on the road. But as is with a lot of things in life, time passed him by before he could get her road worthy again. Todd would see that she was brought back to her former glory. He immediately set about diagnosing the problems and setting them strait.
As with anything that had sat in one place for so long, there was a laundry list of items that needed either changing or replaced. First on that long list would be all the fluids and tires. The coil was out to lunch, along with the cables and a few of the seals. The Dell'Orto carbs were in need of a thorough cleaning and tuning. As I have absolutely no experience with Dell'Ortos or flat slides, Todd turned to a professional to sort them out. The pro even had a bit of trouble with them, but after a while she was running like a champ.
With everything in it's right order, Todd found himself in a quandary. He really liked the bike, but was not sure if he wanted to keep it. He had been out of the riding game for quite some time and as much as he wanted to keep the Eldorado, he decided to sell her instead. So with mixed emotions, he placed an ad on both eBay and craigslist. A bidder soon won the bike on eBay, and the bike will be picked up Monday by a vehicle transport company. The new owner has already sold it to a collector in Japan. Too bad, it would have been nice to keep such a unmolested example of a Vintage Guzzi here in the states where it had spent it's entire existence. I'm sure it's new owner will lavish all the care and attention on her that she deserves. Even though it's not my bike, I'm sad to see it go.

Till Next Time..............


red said...

Wow. That is an amazing find! Sad to see it go. Did you get to take a test ride?

Gymi said...


It is every bit as nice as it looks. The only thing I would do if I had the bike would be to update the shocks and fork springs. I did take it for a short ride, it had the feel of a vintage beemer. I would have liked to see Todd keep it, or at least some one from these parts take it.

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