Impression Laverda 750 S
Hard but hearty
Bigger is better, Americans thought over thirty years ago. Those who wanted to sell motorcycles agreed with this opinion, and Laverda also switched from small motorized cattle to a 750 twin. This established the Breganzer, whose main source of income was from the sale of agricultural machinery, as a provider of robust, manly motorcycles.
Klonk ?? the fifth is sitting, and the mustard-yellow northern Italian shakes me with just over 2500 tours through the main street of the little town of Stockach. The mirror buzzes to the beat of the firing order of the lush synchronous runner and admonishes to accelerate so that he can get himself back. It is a real workhorse, the 750 S, in the tradition of the agricultural machinery of the same name from Breganze and, like them, nothing can be broken down.
Uff ?? now it’s getting too thick, the lower gear fits better. I pull the clutch and grin broadly: No comparison to before, when gorilla paws were needed to disconnect. And I have to think of Kerstin. Kerstin, the long-haired woman with her Laverda 750 SF, once said that anyone who mounts the longer retrofit lever kit on the clutch is a wimp. Zeitgeist or not – there are things that simply have to be improved. Especially since because of the vibrations on the thick Laverda there is often something to screw anyway. Cracks in the tank, cables off, lamps down ?? there is no longer a need for a clutch lever. Kerstin also never travels without tools, has her box broken down umpteen times? once even, because the collector suddenly showed an animal crack and her blue 750 sounded like a tractor under her full face helmet. What for a woman about such a “hand-hacked iron pile?” liked it, asked Volker (the one with the eternally black fingernails and the Buy British plastic bags) at the recent pastis rally. Well, her inner qualities, he got to hear under appraising glances and watched in amazement as the lightweight Kerstin jacked up this dream of motorcycle. Without tugging and hitching, just with two fingers. “That’s what I call sophisticated. Try that with your cucumber from Meriden ??, she commented, showing him that tough-I’m-too-smile as he choked his bike on the main stand.
Some things can be done without muscles on the Laverda. And yet: The tractor farmer Massimo Laverda knew his way around men and therefore wrote this macho image on the flags in the seventies. Driving Laverda was only for tough guys with a fire in their bodies. Father Francesco started with 75 and 100 cc utility motorcycles in 1950. In the mid-sixties, the tiny ones were no longer in demand, and after a visit to the USA, Massimo explained the way out of the misery: A stunner with a large displacement was needed. In 1966 Laverda presented a 650 twin at the Earls Court Show in London. When Honda came up trumps a little later with the first CB 750, the Breganzers also made gains: after 52 650s were built, production was discontinued and from 1969 the GT 750 and 750 S with a bore of 80 millimeters were put into the race. The massive parallel twin mobilized 60 hp in the sport version. In the lower compression GT, 52 had to suffice.
The 750s sold well. So Massimo Laverda was right, even if there was always something unspectacular about his motorcycle: The great guys with the chicks on the bench, of course, they drove the CB 750 or, if it was an Italian, Ducati or Guzzi. But rarely Laverda. Because with their somewhat bulky design, Massimo’s bikes didn’t necessarily suit everyone’s taste. But then it happened: Laverda, radically trimmed for racing, suddenly appeared in long-distance races in bright orange. And won. In Oss, Barcelona and at the Bol d ?? Or. They all flattened out, and then the last Jawa freak got an idea of the potential of these motorcycles. Endurance races focus on the material. And a Laverda has more than enough of that. A murder spine, for example. And their frame construction can, yes, must confidently be called rustic: the technical director Luciano Zen had unceremoniously moved the two beams around the top ?? and the lush engine hung underneath. But the short-stroke parallel twin, quite blatantly based on the model of a Honda Hawk 305, unfortunately weighed so much that the center of gravity was also quite high. Especially since a fat Bosch starter and 24-AH battery had to be stowed away. The Laverda was therefore to be used with caution in city traffic. Importer Buhler, who brought about a hundred 750 S to Germany over thirty years ago, only recommended it anyway ?? who already? ?? real men and connoisseurs.
It gets noisy from time to time among men. Goes with the Laverda. Or not? It never yells, doesn’t bark, and leaves it at a powerful growl. The air-cooled synchronous rotor turns, if necessary, sometimes up to 8000 revs, but always with leisure, never appears to be strained and mechanically makes a very healthy impression. The triplex chain of the primary drive also works with a rather pleasant noise level. On the other hand, it sounds euphoric from the beveled rear silencers? Clearly, the Americans liked the slash-cut bags of the S better than the homely tailpipe of the competing Honda Hawk.
Driving the 750 means work? Work that is a lot of fun. Nobody has to move the gears well, because the gear lever on the right seems more intended for stable lads than for guys who can only steel their muscles by sharpening a pencil. Those who are spoiled for comfort get problems with the short sports handlebars, because right-left swings in quick succession go into each other’s arms. Just stay calm, the engine hums in my ear, and really, that’s how it works: aim at the curve, move it decisively, let it run again. But don’t get too cocky, because another trim device was used as the front brake on the S. In the cold state, the drum grips to a certain extent, but at the end of just medium-long downhill stretches, its lever wants to be pulled through almost to the rubber grip for very little effect with maximum taste. “Well, it’s not from Laverda either,” Kerstin would have replied, “but from Grimeca.” In 1970, the brake and rim manufacturer was still a supplier. Only the SF »Super Freni ??, the successor to the 750 S, decelerated much more powerfully with a drum brake made in-house by Laverda.
I.In the third, I pull out of a place, turn up to 6500 rpm and the motor trumpets in the fourth when a green sign flies past in the corner of my eye: farmers’ market 500 meters. Well, it’s enough to brake stylishly and I come to a stop right in front of an apple stand. “What kind of goat is that?” Asks the farmer and his wife adds that nobody is getting any younger. I am just ordering a pound of Boskop when the farmer ironically remarks that he would like to borrow the thing for the tractor race if his old Lanz gave up the ghost. I press the starter and when I turn onto the main road, a Deutz promptly sneaks ahead of me. 20 km / h is written on the trailer. My collar bursts, I grab the Tomaselli handle, squeeze out the second one, and dive past a diesel Daimler. No, it is not an agricultural machine, this Laverda – it is an overland machine: Space there, and bye.
Technical data – Laverda 750 S
Engine: Air-cooled two-cylinder four-stroke engine, two valves per cylinder, bore x stroke: 80 x 74 mm, displacement 744 cm3, 60 hp at 6600 rpm, compression 9.5: 1, two 30-Dellorto carburettors, wet sump lubrication, five-speed gearbox Double tubular frame made of tubular steel, telescopic fork and adjustable shock absorbers from Ceriani, Grimeca double-cam drum brake at the front, simplex drum at the rear, spoked wheels 3.25-18 at the front, 4.00-18 at the rear, wheelbase 1465 mm, measured values: weight 231 kg with a full tank, top speed 190 km / h. Construction time 1969 to 1970, price 1970: 6,438 marks.
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