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BAVARIAN BEAST: The New BMW R18

Posted on April 4, 2020 by Scott in Bobber. No Comments

Written by Martin Hodgson

Five years is a long time to wait for anything; foreplay is important but too long and you run the risk of your partner getting so bored they pack up and go home. But BMW knows the game well, teasing the public at first with the R5 Hommage and then dropping the engine off to a few custom builders to do the rounds of the world’s biggest shows. Now the beast from Bavaria is revealed before you for the very first time, in the exact trim with which it’ll hit showrooms floors. The BMW R18 is the boxer bruiser to take on the power cruiser market, equal parts brains and brawn and we’ve got all the information you need to know.

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EDGE OF YOUR SEAT: Yamaha XV920 Virago by 485 Designs

Posted on February 26, 2020 by Scott in Bobber, Brat, Café Racer. No Comments

Written by Tim Huber.

Over the last few years Yamaha’s venerable Virago has become an increasingly popular platform for customization, trumped by the likes of the CX500, CB750, and Dominator. And while it’s difficult to pin-down the first shop to treat the Japanese V-Twin to a bob-job, Colorado’s 485 Designs has undeniably played a pivotal role in demonstrating the merits of the XV. In fact, to say 485 specializes in Virago builds would be one hell of an understatement, with the two-man operation’s portfolio brimming with all manner of stellar bobbed Virago builds including turbocharged examples and specimens sporting single-sided swing-arms, just to name a few. 

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GOOD WORK AIN’T CHEAP: Harley-Davidson Iron 883 by Gasoline Motor Co.

Posted on December 5, 2019 by Scott in Bobber, Chopper. No Comments

Nothing goes better with the image of Harley-Davidsons than hard liquor and tattoos. So when one of Gasoline Motor Co.’s best clients for commissioned bike builds – William Grant and Sons for the famous Sailor Jerry Spiced Rum – they couldn’t wait to get their hands dirty again. The ‘SJ2’ is the second collaboration build between the two companies. After building a Triumph Scrambler to chew up the dirt in 2018, this year’s collaboration holds the legacy of old-school sailors and hula girls in paradise.

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LIMITED EDITION: CCM Spitfire Stealth Series

Posted on November 19, 2019 by Scott in Bobber, Scrambler. No Comments

Written by Tim Huber.

When CCM introduced the first Spitfire model in 2016, the handmade singles took the world by storm, generating an enormous amount of hype and punching well above the boutique manufacturer’s weight. After the first batch sold out in a matter of days, the Clewes boys were prompted to release another Spitfire-based model… and then another, and another, and another. So after offering the original model, the cafe racer, the scrambler, flat tracker, the bobber, and Foggy, and the Six, the small UK operation has just revealed its latest addition to the Spitfire platform with the new 2020 Stealth Series. 

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BACK IN BLACK: 2012 Kawasaki W800 by Mike Andrews

Posted on November 7, 2019 by Scott in Bobber, Chopper. No Comments

Written by Martin Hodgson

The last time we caught up with Kiwi Mike Andrews he’d finished building his epic Honda Muscle Racer and after its Pipeburn feature he was looking forward to clocking up the miles before retiring the bike to his living room. But life has a way of turning the rudder for us and sending us on a path totally planned. For Mike that meant the sale of his beloved creation and major surgery, but always setting an example for his boys he’s back with another blacked out custom creation. Now working under the name Bonnievill he’s turned out a sleek and slick 2011 Kawasaki W800 to get him back on the road in style.

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HIGH CALIBRE: BMW R100 ‘VULCAN’ by Ironwood Custom Motorcycles

Posted on October 23, 2019 by Scott in Bobber, Classic. No Comments

Written by Tim Huber.

Each year, motorcycle manufacturers are faced with the challenge of building on, and improving the outgoing model year; finding ways to bolster performance; shave off weight; and ultimately outdo their previous offering; before starting the whole process over the following year. Ironwood Custom Motorcycles faces a similar struggle; after completing one of its signature bratted and bobbed BMW’s, the Dutch shop is routinely forced to discover new avenues to one-upping itself. This is by no means an easy feat considering the caliber of IWC’s work, though with its latest Bavarian-based project, it’s managed to deliver in spades.

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VINTAGE VIBES: 2002 Harley-Davidson Sportster ‘Taranis’

Posted on October 9, 2019 by Scott in Bobber, Classic. No Comments

Written by Martin Hodgson

It’s not hard to imagine going to the Handbuilt Motorcycle Show in Austin and coming away inspired to build a custom bike of your own. But while most would be drawn to the endless number of incredible bikes crafted by the world’s best builders, it was inside the Wall of Death that the idea for the machine before you was born! Forged together from a 2002 Harley Sportster and a vintage Harley WL it’s the brainchild of Michael Alton, roaming the roads of Texas where it’s known as Taranis.

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HOUNDS OF HELL: BMW R80R ‘Cerberus’ by Haseth Motorcycles

Posted on October 2, 2019 by Scott in Bobber, Classic. No Comments

Written by Tim Huber.

Some projects are just meant to be. We can resist all we want, but fate has a funny way of dictating our ultimate outcomes in what we do. Marc from Haseth Motorcycles in Amsterdam recently experienced this first hand. When shopping around for a project donor, Marc came across a used early ‘90s BMW R80R, though it was a bit worse for the wear, so he ended up opting for an R60/2 instead. A little down the road after that build was complete, Marc came across the very same R80R, though again passed on it. But when it came time to find another suitable airhead donor, and the R80R popped up for a third time, Marc took it as a sign.

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BAVARIAN BLUE: BMW R80 by La Motocicletta

Posted on September 20, 2019 by Scott in Board Tracker, Bobber. No Comments

Written by Tim Huber.

Literally Italian for “motorbike”, La Motocicletta is a small shop in Italy that approaches custom building from a different vantage point than most. Massimo, La Motocicletta founder and head honcho, previously spent his days working on prototypes for major manufacturers, so churning out one-off parts and ultra-clean bikes with a factory level finish is what the man is accustom to.

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2019 Custom Built Show, Bogotá, Colombia

Posted on August 28, 2019 by Scott in Bobber, Brat, Café Racer. No Comments

Written by Marlon Slack.

I was in Colombia for twelve hours when a man yelled at me and shoved a pistol in my face. I panicked, reverted to German and cried ‘Nich schiessen!’ before he laughed, lowered the gun and ran out of the shopping centre. Security guards in Bogotá don’t f*ck. He and his two camarada were bounding their way through the mall, pistols in hand, when I rounded a corner and startled them. Later, Gustavo from the custom shop Pasquale Motorcycles told me I’d stuffed up. You should give security guards a wide berth. And police. And soldiers. “Pretty much anyone with a gun,” he laughed.

It was the only blip I had in my time at Colombia for the Custom Built Show. Colombia’s not the wild west of Latin America as it was ten years ago. The place is safe, the people, without exception, are welcoming and the food and booze terrific. I could wax lyrical about the country for hours. But you’re here for the bikes.

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