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1969 Triumph Bobber

Posted on May 13, 2011 by Andrew in Bobber, Classic. 18 comments

Kevin was a sure bet at his company’s “bring your bobber to work” day

Me, I’m a fussy bastard. Can’t do anything without mapping it out to the nth degree with contingency plans and failsafes and such nonsense. Which is great if you have an issue that you saw coming, but of course the real issues are always the ones you DON’T see coming; the ones you can’t possibly plan for. These kinds curveballs really do my head in. Not so for one Mister Kevin White from Washington state in America’s Pacific North West Spencer, Iowa. Nuh-uh. See, he’s the kind of guy that seems to be able to roll with the punches and push on through to the other side where he’ll pull up on a killer custom with a smile from ear-to-ear even though his build jumped from one track to another like a electrocuted DJ at a Drum ‘n’ Bass festival. Meanwhile I would have been kicking back in a nice padded workshop with some of those special overalls that let the nice doctors tie your hands behind your back so you can’t reach your Snap-Ons.

Over to Kev. “I was visiting my buddy at his bike shop and he had a basket case ’72 tr6c engine laying on the floor. I bought it the same day and drug it home. Wanted to find a Rickman frame and build a proper cafe racer. Couldn’t source a frame so i switched gears and decided on a traditional style bobber. I found a ’69 t120 frame with bolt-on hard tail on ebay and bought it. It was garbage: no kickstand lug, both top tubes were cut, pulled back and welded (crooked) for more rake and the hard tail had damage. My good friend Tony and I spent a marathon day replacing the top tubes, making it true and plumb, and turning the rear portion into a flowing lines weld on hard tail.”

“I sourced a NOS Wassell tank and relocated the petcocks to the back and used HD VL petcocks. I found an oil tank off a BSA flat tracker and made the seat pan. I switched the ’72 rocker boxes for ’71’s for the earlier look. I had an Amal monobloc on the shelf with a Webco float bowl chamber that I used and found the velocity stack in England. I made the footpeg brackets on put Bates’ pegs on. Found a ’36 Ford spare tire cover to build a fender out of. I wanted a rider and prefered running a front brake and found a TLS triumph hub. I laced the wheels, built the engine and forks, and painted it.”

“Tony made the battery box/coil bracket/ boyer ignition bracket all in one piece. I was pushed to get it done to take to the S&S 50th party in LaCrosse, WI. We finished it up at 6pm on Friday night, rode it around the block and drove through the night to the show. Next day, I put 140 miles on it.”

“I’m really happy with the traditional style I was striving for. The rear fender came off at speed and destroyed it. The only bolt I forget to check. Found another Ford cover and WELDED the bolt. Its a gas to ride and will be in the stable a long time to come.”

We hope you like what you see, because you’ll be getting more of Kev’s work here on Pipeburn in the coming weeks as his latest build is just about ready for her close-up, Mr DeMille. What’s he gone and created now, I hear you ask? Well, remember that “proper cafe racer” he was going to make? Oh yes. Let’s just hope the build went a little smoother this time.

People often ask Kevin how he got the paint to emit that radiant, green glow…

“The rear fender came off at speed and destroyed it.” Note distance from rear fender to Kev’s ass…

  • Chris

    Beautiful work, Kev. I love everything about it!

  • VonYinzer

    Hell ya Chris!!!! Well deserved brother! Cant wait to see the next one here.

  • JustinLonghorn

    Fantastic, my man!

  • dave in kalifornia

    Pretty sweet!

  • Evan

    Great bike! It's obvious to me that this guy know far more about bikes than I do. That said, the front end is off a BSA.

  • Tony Tigger

    That fender darn near destroyed me at speed! Ha Ha!! I watched it fly right over my head, and I thought to my self, "forgot to check one damn bolt".

  • RebeccaDee

    Nice Headlight!!!!

  • D.

    Yes. Definitely yes.

  • dannyb278

    Really cool. I love triumph chops, but i always wince when a tr6 isnt in a desert sled. That being said, a really cool bike. Congrats.

  • Alex


    Why is it registered in Iowa if he lives in Washington state… 24 hours ride away.

  • @Alex – Would you believe, that as well as being a master bike builder Kev is also able to bend time and space using only the power of his mind, thus allowing him to appear and disappear in any location across the globe at will. Either that, or I stuffed up on my American licensee plate identification and read the last two letters of IOWA on the plate as "WA" and took it to mean Washington State.

    You be the judge.

  • Alex

    Aww, I was hoping it was because it is easier to register a custom motorcycle in Iowa or something…. Assuming my visa gets approved, I'm moving from Melbourne, Australia to Iowa in the next half year or so. 🙂

  • Kev

    Thank you Andrew for this opportunity and thank you to all for the nice comments. I love all brands and styles of motorcycles and think captures that essence.

  • Septic the Sceptic

    Nice bike. Even like the colours. Not a "bobber" though.

  • Very cool! congrats!

  • Mike

    Very nice Build!!!

  • ate plastick

    nice very very nice

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