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Royal Enfield


‘03 Royal Enfield Electra – Bull City Customs

Posted on April 2nd, by Andrew in Bobber. 9 comments

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They say that genetics are responsible for what’s passed down through the generations. But anyone out there with kids will realised that there’s so much more than just DNA that goes into making a person a person. In fact, it can be down-right scary what they pick up from adults. Or even what they don’t pick up. And then there’s the little things that lay dormant for years and years, like seeds once planted that take an eternity to sprout. For Reginald Hilt from New Delhi’s Bull City Customs, that dormant seed contained the DNA to build an entire bike shop. And that’s just what it did once the conditions were right.

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Royal Enfield Café Racer by Rajputana Customs

Posted on July 13th, by Andrew in Café Racer. 2 comments

When Numero Uno Jeans were looking for the numero uno bike builder in India to build them a café racer, they were told to visit Rajputana Customs. Even though Rajputana hadn’t built a café racer before, they had the credentials and were keen to build something a little different from their past projects. Numero Uno were pretty loose with their brief. It had to be a café racer, it also had to use the Numero Uno colors and it had to have a few branding details – so people knew it was a Numero Uno bike. Vijay and the guys from Rajputana started with the classic Indian donor bike – the 500cc Royal Enfield. “This is our first full-blown café racer and we hope to build a few more of these in the years to come” says Vijay. The bike took them three months to build and all for the very palatable cost of 450,000 Rupee, which works out to be around $8000 – not bad for a fully customised, ground up build.


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Royal Enfield Bullet 500 – Hazan Motorworks

Posted on June 14th, by Andrew in Café Racer. 1 Comment

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.


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Royal Enfield Bullet – Old Empire Motorcycles

Posted on May 28th, by Andrew in Bobber, Classic. No Comments

Here’s a little piece of motorcycling trivia for you. Do you know why riders in the ’40s and ’50s ended up wearing flying jackets and aviator goggles? Give up? It’s because many of the English and American guys who’d flown planes in WWII took up motorcycling as something to do after the war was over. It not only put a little thrill into their comparatively dull civilian lives, but forming clubs that met and rode regularly was a good way to stay in touch with airforce buddies. So in many ways, the biking culture that we all enjoy today was a product of bored flyboys. And what better way to acknowledge this than to build a bike that’s a lot more khaki canteen than it is café. Here’s the ‘Fox’, Old Empire Motorcycles’ latest build.


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Kingston’s Royal Enfield 500 – “No.5”

Posted on September 29th, by Andrew in Bobber. No Comments

Things Germans have created. Kraftwerk. Sausages. Beer. BMW. Autobahns. Rockets. Rotary engines. Jet fighters. Printing presses. Diesel engines. Boxer engines. Cocaine. Amphetamines. Morphine. Asprin. MP3s. Record players. Tape recorders. The pill. Toothpaste. X-ray machines. Krautrock. Geiger counters. Zeppelins. VWs. Helicopters. Television. The theory of relativity. Computers. Gliders. Cars. Motorbikes. Oh – and this bobber. OK guys. Enough’s enough. Now you’re just showing off.


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Old Empire Motorcycle’s “Pup” Bobber

Posted on May 26th, by Andrew in Bobber, Classic. 3 comments

We get our fair share of emails here at the House of Pipes. Lots of new bikes for us to ogle, links, images, and more than a few requests for bike builds. Yeah, we’re not sure why they keep asking either; I suggested to Scott that we just take their deposits and then skip the country, but he didn’t seem to be into it. And sometimes we get a tantalising look at a bike build in progress where you can see that the guys doing the wrenching are definitely on to a good thing. In the case of the guys at Old Empire Motorcycles, we had been chatting to them for ages – so long so, in fact, that we’d all but given up on them ever finishing. But just when you think all hope’s lost, blammo – you find yourself looking at one of the coolest pommie custom bikes in recent memory. Tally ho!


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Rajputana Customs – ‘8 Ball’

Posted on October 22nd, by Andrew in Bobber. 1 Comment

If it can be done with a Enfield, Rajputana will do it

You want another bike, and you want it bad. But you know the awkward, tense, likely-to-be-sleeping-on-the-couch discussion with your partner about the money that you should be spending on the mortgage/rent/credit card payments will be a killer. The more ordinary amongst us would probably leave it at that. God knows I would. But not one Mohit Sharma from a little place west of Asia you may have heard of called “India”. See, when he wanted a new bike for his stable, he didn’t ask the misses. Oh no. As a matter of fact he didn’t tell her at all; what he did was build this here bike you see before you and then give it to her as an anniversary present. Genius or what? We’re pretty sure the Nobel Prize doesn’t have a “Contributions to Bike Collecting” category, but if it did then this Sharma dude would be a dead cert.


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Royal Enfield Bullet – ‘The Badger’ V2.0

Posted on October 13th, by Andrew in Classic, Racer. 23 comments

Damn show offs. That’s right – we’re calling it as we see it. The guys from Cycle Icons are show offs. Why? Well listen up, ’cause we’re about to rain on their little parade big time. First they go and create one of the sweetest little Enfields we’ve ever seen. It get a serious amount of coverage and applause from almost everyone, except a few guys in the EXIF comments section which means they are obviously doing something pretty friggin’ right. Job done, yeah? Break out a case o’ cans and rest on your own merits, yeah? Of course! But not for these guys. So what do they do? They go again. ON THE SAME BIKE! C’mon! And as if that’s not bad enough we think they’ve actually gone and made it better. Boo! They’re like that high-school jock who saves the game by scoring in the final minute and then scores again with seconds on the clock just to make sure no one missed the fact that he’s so annoyingly talented. Do you have a mental image of him in your head? Good. Now swap the team uniform for a Cycle Icons Tee. See where we’re going with this?


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Royal Enfield Bobber – The Himalayan Outlaw

Posted on September 14th, by Scott in Bobber. 17 comments

The country Nepal is probably most famous for that rather large hill they call Everest. Known to the locals as ‘Sagarmatha’, or ‘Goddess of the sky’. The thing they are probably least famous for is their killer death metal bands. Oh – and building custom motorcycles. As we recently learnt, there’s a reason for this. Any type of of motorcycle modification is strictly prohibited by the Nepalese Government. Not one to thrive living inside the rules, Sergey Egorov decided to chance it and build one of the first truly custom bikes in Nepal. This is the story about the bike named ‘Himalayan Outlaw’ or as we’d like to call her if we magically got naming rights, ‘Goddess of the street’.


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Rajputana Customs Royal Enfield – ‘Chingari’

Posted on September 12th, by Andrew in Café Racer, Racer. 13 comments

Here at the Pipeburn palace, we often wonder aloud to ourselves while relaxing river-side with the elephants, a fresh yoghurt Lassi and decent serve of post-curry gulab jamun, just why there isn’t more Royal Enfield-based customs around the place. After all, they are in a way a living fossil whose basic design hasn’t changed since 1948. Surely this would make a perfect base for creating a motorcycle that would be pleasing to these young coffee racer-types we hear so much of? Today we were doing just that – wondering, that is – when the young tea wala broke his usual silence and pointed out to us that we had indeed received a communiqué from our good friend Vijay of the very reputable Rajputana Customs in Jaipur just this very day. “My word,” I exclaimed. Then there was a long pause in proceedings where I stared into the distance, adjusted my monocle, and commanded the wala to refill my tea with a mere twitch of my eyebrow. “Well, shouldn’t we read it?” Scotty interrupted. “Jolly good,” I said. “Let’s have at it then…”


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