I was charging the battery on the Jeepy ready for collection next week as its now sold and just wanting to run over it to see if everything is working when I asked Kuya Arnold our neighbour “how old is your motorbike?”. Now I was thinking 10 years plus as you do get some older classic shapes on bikes here in the Philippines for things like the tricycle drivers. But it wasn’t 10 years it was 37 years old and still in daily use.
An old Norkis bike that had been manufactured in Japan and imported to the Philippines was more reliable than my little scooter that’s less than 2 years old. It did remind me though of the chemical purification plant I worked on for the M.O.D. (Ministry of defence) in the UK where we were stripping down British made motors that were already 50 years old and patching bits and pieces together to make working motors out of old ones. Reason being Japanese motors on this type of work lasted 5 years and the Chinese 1 the reason behind it is the introduction of plastic parts over metal. The chemicals react with them and destroy the motors, well those that didn’t fail due to over heating, over use and just generally of lower quality than the ones that were installed for the project after WW2 (they were 50 years old in 2000!). Its partly why I always question the environmental argument with replacement is better than using older equipment because its more efficient because in reality I find most things aren’t. New electronics last a lot less these days than they did 10 years ago and the same goes for cars and pretty much everything as we are now in a throw away society.
Getting back to the motorcycle though it also used to have a sidecar and has travelled the whole length of Cebu island over the years at some point. Its fuel efficiency is a bit of a guzzler at the same time its still holding its own nearly 40 years after arriving here.