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We’ve always been of the opinion that if an Aussie puts their mind to something, one way or another it will happen. And Victorian boy Craig Rodsmith is living, breathing, punk rocking proof that this is true…
Consider the humble Honda CX. If ever the Honda Motor Corporation made a bike that perfectly summed up the company and its ethos, this would be it. Impeccably engineered, virtually indestructible and just a little bit dull. In Germany, they call it a ‘Schlammpumpe’ or ‘Slurry Pump’. In English, ‘The Plastic Maggot’. They say that after a nuclear war, the only creatures to survive will be the cockroaches. Well, we’re here to tell you that they’ll all be riding CXs. And one very, very lucky German Cockroach will be rocking this turbo’d bad boy from Essen’s Kingston Customs.
It’s easy to parrot the line ‘I don’t like Harleys’. It’s an simple trap to fall into, until you realise the huge selection of amazing customs that have been crafted out of Milwaukee’s finest. There’s cafe racers, bobbers, choppers and flat trackers aplenty but my personal favourite has to be the rarely seen board tracker style. And here’s the best goddamn one you’ll find – a stunning turbocharged Harley Evo-engined special crafted by Argentina’s Lucky Custom.
In his shop in downtown Los Angeles, Max Hazan works harder than your average prisoner of war. And his efforts show – he routinely fabricates some of the cleanest, most distinctive builds you’re ever likely to see. This time around he’s outdone himself with a turbocharged 1978 Ducati 860GT, a bike that got really interesting a few weeks into the build when he received a call from his client.
That famous line uttered by Catholic Priest Patrick Peyton quickly had a word change when it entered the common vernacular and has become an old adage in the motorsport world, “The family that races together stays together”! There are plenty of legendary racing families across all forms of motorsport who have found a second home at the race track. For the Vuilleumier family it’s a tale that spans three generations and three continents, with each new-born starting as early as four years old working with the race team and getting an education that can only be attained in the endless battle for the winning edge. Today we find them operating as a father and son team, the owners of Switzerland’s JV Performances, a shop that specialises largely in BMW motorcycles and has unveiled their latest track weapon, an early 90’s K1100LT Tourer, come stripped down and boosted drag bike.
The custom bike scene is full of builders pumping out café racers, trackers, bobbers, scramblers and just about anything imaginable. Yet Chris Canterbury, founder and owner of Boxer Metal in California, still managed to knock one out of the park with his fantastically unique 1980 BMW R100 twin turbo build. “We were excited to attend the One Moto Show in Portland again, but the bike that would have been perfect for it was already packed up and shipped to Guatemala,” says Chris. It didn’t make things easier that the One Moto Show was merely 7 weeks away. Not afraid of a challenge, Chris set out to not only build a bike for the show, but to build a BMW that would really stir things up. It takes a great deal of engineering and ingenuity to fuse one turbo to any bike, but two is more than any kid could ever wish for.
This project started with a conversation that has probably happened in numerous bike shops around the world, with the half serious words “we should add a turbo to it”. The UK based OORacing specialize in Honda Monkey bikes and thought it was a good challenge to add a turbo to a Monkey bike. Over the years they have had lots of experience turbo charging multi-cylinder engines but have never tried to do it with a single cylinder engine. “Turbos are great things and like tires, every bike should have at least one” says Adrian from OORacing. So with that same attitude they started what would be called ‘Project Napier’ and went about turbo charging a Monkey bike – which soon turned into something far more extraordinary than they had ever dreamed of.
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There’s a lot of Aussies that feel rightly proud of local boy Craig Rodsmith. Here’s a custom builder that takes the phrase ‘good with his hands’ to preposterous new heights. He now calls Chicago ‘home’ and making some of the world’s best custom motorcycles ‘a job’…
The mad crew at VTR Customs prove that there’s an undercurrent of beautiful craziness running through the alps. Maybe it’s in the mountain water. But the end result of this rich vein of madness are bikes like this – a NOS powered BMW R1200R racer dubbed ‘Veneno Blanco’ – Spanish for ‘White Poison’…
Dreaming of owning a Max Hazan motorcycle? Put simply, unless you win the Lotto, it’s never going to happen. Now prepare to meet a man who owns five of the things. Yes, you read that right. Welcome to the new Haas Moto Museum & Sculpture Gallery.