The Royal Enfield motorcycle has occupied the imagination of millions of Indian motorcyclists. The company has earned a cult like following around the world. The motorcycles earn it popularity because various reasons like its old school designs, the thumping engine, and reliability. But the ability to customize the motorcycle has earned it millions of cult followers around the world. It has served as chassis to build dream motorbikes for thousands of custom bike builders like me.
This is the first time I have attempted to build a custom bike on the Royal Enfield platform. I have built this bike to pay homage to the motorbike which has fuelled the minds of thousands of custom bike builders. The bike is built with this thought in mind which is reflected by keeping the iconic tank and engine in focus and then blending it with elements of a classic bobber. The hard tail is representative of the commitment of custom bike builder “no matter how hard the road gets, but keeping thumping ahead”
No one will believe but me and the owner of this bike spent whole one year just discussing each other’s ideas on the phone before starting the build & after that it took almost 9 months of time to build this bike.
The build have a very great story to tell, it’s a mixture of old school aesthetics with modern parts. I always try to experiment new things in my every build, but this build have many of those things.
This build is based on Royal Enfield Thunderbird 350cc AVl block, apart from engine block everything is handmade from scratch.
The fuel tank is inspired from Royal Enfield’s signature tanks, while chrome rod and dual fuel caps on it adds vintage appeal to the bike. Paintwork of the bike is also inspired from legendary royal enfield pin-striping on the tanks.
The front portion gets an old school design touches with classic linkage suspension system with 4inches aluminum headlamp, while the other half is hard-tail.
A carb equipped with handmade velocity stack filter for fresh air while exhaust is handcrafted from stainless steel bends which have colored welding joints, achieved by me after 1 week of TIG welding practice as all the professional welders in my town said the kind of job is not possible.
This is the very first Royal Enfield build which have perimeter discs for braking, while vintage firestone rubber make the combination so perfect. It took almost 2 to 3 months to design and manufacture this perimeter discs which was the very challenging work I did so far. I used mechanical calipers for braking as I wanted to create a vintage plus some lever mechanism charm to the build. The rear brake working is based on Bell crank mechanism while the front one works same like the modern brake cables.
The electrical system of the bike is all hidden in the box under the seat. It took complete 4 days to shorten the whole bunch of wiring loom into tiny loom which fits into the box. It was a bit challenging as this bike’s new wiring loom was not available in the market so if anything goes wrong in shorting the old wiring then it’ll very hard to get this bike started. Everything from starter relay to rectifier or anything related to electrical is kept in that box with the ignition key, push button starter switch, toggle type kill switch & light on off switch.
Handlebar grips and footrests are machined from raw steel bars while front brake lever is handcrafted. Accelerator knob is machined to make it look very minimalistic.
The most exciting feature of this bike is suicide clutch and jockey shifter. The owner of the bike asked me if I can put jockey shifter like old Indian’s or BSA’s as he wanted the old school feel, which really grab the attention of everyone.
The seat is made of pure leather two tone combination with diamond stitches as well as same themed battery case.
The most challegning part of the build was the Perimeter discs setup. I was very much confused during the build, whether to go for this perimeter disc brakes or not. Was worried that will it go successful, as it was completely technical task. But with the courageous mind I took the challenge and you can see the results. It took almost 3 months for designing & manufacturing this perimeter discs. Made 4or 5 different designs and after improvising finalized the 6th design.
It needs to design so perfect that can fit onto stock wheel rim I was using, as manufacturing this perimeter discs is costly process and can’t afford to reject the piece and manufactur again with improvement. So It was one chance only.
Welding mountings on wheel rim to mount this discs is also challenging task as all brackets should needs to be perfect parallel to each other for perfect fitment of the discs. So, its also done with proper technical care and research.
After I finished this process suscesfully, it was time to design calipers for proper braking system. But instead of going with hydraulic calipers I choose mechanical calipers as I wanted to give an old school look as well as some mechanical lever charm. Which you can observe in photos. Rear brake mechanism is built using principal of bell crank mechanism while front brake working is developed using modern wire cable brakes with some old school touches.
And you have the world’s first royal enfield with perimeter discs now.
Setting up foot clutch was challenging task, too.