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  • Words by Mr Mansel Fletcher, Features Editor, MR PORTER

A vintage sports watch, a cordovan wallet, a Milanese umbrella, Irish linen handkerchiefs and a bridle-leather briefcase. There are a lot of accessories that well-dressed men aspire to own, but none can hold a candle to the appeal of a vintage motorbike. They are the ultimate accessories because they're stylish in a masculine way, they say good things about their owner, and they retain a democratic appeal that the overheated vintage car market has long lost.

The truth is that they're uncomfortable, unreliable, dangerous, impractical, easily stolen and mechanically primitive. So it's lucky that logic doesn't really drive the decision to become a biker. Instead it's down to a thirst for excitement, physical bravery, an independence of spirit, a need for speed and the firm belief that there is no cooler way to get around than on a bike.

Another reason for biking's enduring appeal is that it has such a roll call of icons, from the truly famous, such as Mr Marlon Brando, to the less well known, such as Italian racer Mr Giacomo Agostini. These are the guys who knew that, regardless of the impracticalities, it's hard for a man to look better than when he's stepping off a great motorcycle, particularly if he's wearing a pair of substantial leather boots, some worn selvedge jeans, a white T-shirt and a biker jacket.

Click the gallery, above, to see how it's done.