When you receive an email talking about a man from a small village in Southern France who used old fashion forging techniques, a crucible and sand moulds your mind starts to wander. Is this a 19th century inventor who burned his home down trying to create some delusionary dream? Perhaps a 16th century sword maker working for one of the 4000-odd aristocrats who died in duels during the reign of Henry IV? But no. It is in fact the work of Nicolas Baux, a CAD Designer by trade, who in 2016 revived some of the oldest metal working techniques to produce a staggering one hundred individually handcrafted parts for his custom motorcycle. The result is a modern machine with historic roots, a Royal Enfield Black Bullet from his new company, Motocyclette Certifiée Non Conforme.
Craftsmanship is a word that gets thrown around a lot in relation to custom bikes. And fair enough, really. Unless you can create something purely by removing parts from a factory bike, you’ll probably get to the point where you have to fashion, fold, or file something sooner or later. But as any of us who have actually worked with metal in anger will know, there’s a world of difference between one man’s ‘that’ll do’ an another’s. Meet Max Hazan and the latest build out of his Hazan Motorworks shop in Brooklyn, New York. It’s pretty obvious to us that Max’s ‘that’ll do’ is, well… let’s just say that Max doesn’t do ‘that’ll do’. Not at all.