The discovery of new shops and custom bikes is by far the best part of our jobs. Waking up each morning to emails containing virtual goldmines of moto coolness is a privilege, and one that we’ll just never tire of…
Whether you’re seriously looking for a donor bike for your next project or just day dreaming about what could be, we all do it; flick through the classified magazines, scour the internet or kick tyres at the nearest swap meet. Of course most of us are all looking for the same thing…
Royal Enfield is on a mission of late, to take one of the world’s oldest marques and push it back up the motorcycle food chain. Firmly in their sights is UK powerhouse Triumph with a number of key personnel recently poached for Enfield’s future expansion. However in the meantime the introduction of the Himalayan gives the company an incredibly priced entry into the highly competitive Adventure bike class. A type of machine that rarely gets modified, short of throwing on heated grips, panniers and other such purposeful yet uninspiring additions. But someone forgot to tell Brothers Rahul and Birju of Sinroja Motorcycles who have dealt their second ace to complete a pair of pocket rockets, this time a custom Himalayan for all occasions, meet The Gentleman Brat.
In a strange kind of synchronicity, Brothers Rahul and Birju Sinroja were 16 years old when their family upped and moved them from India to England. Now they’re producing custom Indian motorcycles for Brits. The first of which is this incredible Royal Enfield Continental GT dubbed the ‘Surf Racer’ – one of a pair of Enfield specials produced for the Wheels and Waves festival.
Don’t be fooled by the name. The latest helmet from British company Hedon might be called the ‘Heroine’, but this helmet is definitely made for both men and women. Off the back of their luxurious ‘Hedonist’ open face helmet, the gentlefolk from Hedon have launched this, their new creation. It’s a retro styled full faced helmet that definitely looks the part. The Heroine comes in two models; the Heroine Classic and the Racer. The Heroine Classic has been designed to be used with goggles or sunglasses, while the Heroine Racer has an integrated flip-up flat visor.
You never forget your first motorbike, no matter how good or bad it was, that machine opened up your life to a whole new world. For most a limited budget and a young age means riding something that looks terrible, breaks down often and leaves oil up your leg. So you save your pennies for something better. Or maybe you have a little more cash to play with for your first ride. Sure you could buy one of the many characterless, learner legal “sportsbikes” offered new by any of the manufacturers. But there is another option and the UK’s Auto Fabrica have got it just right; a Yamaha SR250 known as ‘Type 4A’ that’s custom cool, a perfect first motorcycle and means nobody else on learner plates will be rolling just like you.
Customers come in all shapes and sizes. The easy ones. The difficult ones. The ones that trust you and the ones that want to tell you how it’s done. But when you’re building a custom bike, surely there could be not more difficult a client than a Director of Photography. Charged with making shots look great on big budget films or TV, there’s probably no one in the world more focused on the details, colours and structure of a creative job. So while the builder is talking to them about choosing a seat colour, the ‘DOP’ is probably playing cinematic images of the finished bike through his over-active head. Images that are probably very similar to the ones you see here. And that’s because the DOP in this instance is also the Untitled Motorcycles customer who ordered this BMW and the guy who shot it. Check out Chris Steven’s beautiful ‘79 ‘Mile Muncher’ R80/7
Black is white. Dogs are cats. Bike dealer are customisers. If there was ever a gauge of just how far the custom bike scene has come on its decade-long world domination tour, it’s this. Bike dealers busting top customising chops. And there’s no accessories catalogue or wallet-driven pretence here. This is an honest-to-goodness home run by a shop that’s so trad they even sell BMW cars. Colour us impressed, and colour our feature bike purple(ish) for a second night in row. Here’s Brighton’s Chandlers Bikes and their retail masterpiece, the ‘One.Sixteen’ RnineT.
We’re just adding a new entry to our ‘2016’s most obvious facts’ list. Right below the lines that say “American elections go for too long,” and “David Bowie was pretty good,” we’ve just added a fresh entry. It reads “Triumph Motorcycles is having an amazing year.” Even if we disregard their triple cylinder and off-road offerings and just focus on their Bonnevilles, barely a month seems to go by without us receiving an invite for another big launch. The Street Twin. The T120. And now, little more than a week or four after their big Thruxton R launch, comes the global reveal of their top-secret Bobber project. We were there. We went to the launch. We visited the factory. And then we pushed our luck and asked to ride the thing. What was it like? Read on, dear bobberphiles, read on.
Written by Martin Hodgson
Running a custom bike shop can be a bit like being a real estate agent, no not being the brunt of everyone’s jokes, but dealing with a public whose eyes are often bigger than their wallets. We’ve all heard about the guy who walks into an agent’s office looking for a large five bedroom home, ensuite and spa bath, on a large block of land with water views and only $100k to spend; tell him he’s dreaming! But the requests are often along similar lines at custom shops; however they hold an ace the agent doesn’t, they can actually create something to satisfy the outlandish request.