The Japanese have always been ahead of the curve when it comes to youth subcultures; plenty of rebellious youths have taken one look at those corporate wage-slave “salarymen” and decided to take a different approach to life. One of the more weird and wonderful custom motorcycle subcultures in the land of the rising sun is bōsōzoku – which literally means “running-out-of-control”. Surprisingly, it started as far back as the 1950s, around the same time the café racer culture was gathering momentum. This subculture became the inspiration behind the latest build from David Chang and Andrew Blaschko from CROIG. The bike, aptly named ‘Kury Sauce’, is adorned in traditional Japanese art, with one side covered in cherry blossoms and the other with ‘The Great Wave’-inspired design.
‘Kury Sauce’ came to be when David Chang and Andrew met some folks from Kuryakyn at their monthly open house at the Moto Collective. Kuryakyn is a company known for their luggage and parts for larger cruisers, and had just come out with some parts designed by David Mucci, along with some high-end lighting accessories. They wanted to showcase their product in a way that would draw people’s attention to the custom motorcycle scene.
“Our main influence was obviously from the Japanese bōsōzoku culture,” says David. “But we were also inspired by choppers, the Super Hooligan craze, and of course café racers. What was cool about this project was that we engaged and collaborated with our audience throughout different stages of the build. Using concept drawings by Jeremy at Downshift Studios, 3M vinyl graphics designed by Impulse Creative and custom aluminum bodywork by the talented metal wizard Jake Krotje (@theflyingdutchmanco) helped take our concept to reality.”
The guys started with a café racer-inspired fairing and mounted it high in true bōsōzoku style. “Although the positioning looks like it would be impossible to see the road, it works nicely as a wind fairing and allows for a full view of the open road,” recalls David. “The TC Bros frisco-mounted tank and bars, the Crazy Frank-inspired tail section – that draws from the chopper culture – and our RSD Super Hooligan wheel setup give you a hint of how the bike will eventually be ridden.”
“We were a little nervous about how the bike would turn out, so we took our time and made sure the proportions and lines were just right – we wanted everything to flow and be cohesive. The final stage was to come up with a design that would really make the bike pop. After mocking up some designs with Impulse Creative, we asked our audience to vote for their favourite and voice their opinions. The result is what you see now: a two-sided design. On one side is a Haku wave design showing the stormy and aggressive side, in contrast to the peaceful cherry blossom. The bike also takes Eastern and Western culture and combines them together, creating a bōsōzoku-style American Harley XR1200 – East meets West.”
The CROIG boys know the bike will be very polarising and that was very much intentional. “We know ‘Kury Sauce’ isn’t for everyone – most people either hate it or love it — BUT the idea was to encourage people to think outside of the box, to be creative and not to be afraid to try different things. It has been nice to see some who originally hated it eventually learn to show some appreciation and like the end result. This wouldn’t have been possible without the support of Kuryakyn and we’re very grateful for them letting us take creative reign. There is still a lot of life left in this build, so keep your eyes peeled for it in action at a track or out on the open road.”