Bringing you the world's best cafe racers, trackers, scramblers, bobbers & custom motorcycles.

Desert Sled


ORANGE IS THE NEW BRAAP: 1978 KTM GS250 by Sam Customs

Posted on September 12, 2019 by Scott in Desert Sled, Enduro. No Comments

Written by Martin Hodgson

On the edge of a crystal clear lake, with its stunning historic buildings and sweeping views of the Alps, Thun, Switzerland is a popular place to visit. “Scooter bikes can be rented for the trip back down to the valley if you’re feeling adventurous,” enthuses the local tourism website. Boring! Instead, be like Sam Luginbühl and bring the hills alive with the sound of a rip snorting two-stroke! The proprietor of his own all-round metal fabrication and Hot Rod business, Sam Customs, he’s spent the past five years in his downtime piecing together this killer KTM GS250 with looks that are as good as it goes.

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SHOVELHEAD SCRAMBLER by Sato Marine Cycle

Posted on September 4, 2019 by Scott in Desert Sled, Scrambler, Tracker. No Comments

Written by Martin Hodgson

In a world filled with celebrities with no discernible talent and the scourge that is the social media influencer, there comes our favourite antidote. The incredible craftspeople and visionaries that from their humble locales ply their trade without ever seeking fame or fortune. It is in the back streets of any Japanese city that you’ll find many of these fine folk working their magic. And from the beautiful temple filled port city of Onomichi we meet another master, Yusaku Sato. Who presents to us his latest build, a stunning Shovelhead Scrambler from his house of handmade machines, Sato Marine Cycle.

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ESCAPE ARTIST. Buell X1 Lightning by Custom Works Zon

Posted on July 1, 2019 by Scott in Desert Sled, Enduro. No Comments

Words by Martin Hodgson | Photography by Hiromitsu Yasui

On the outside it looks like a simple little building, with faded weatherboards and an old tin roof in a small historic town in Japan. Surrounded by neatly ploughed fields you step inside and expect to see an old man repairing dated farming machinery, instead you’ve entered the home of one of the world’s best custom bike shops. But despite becoming renowned for their concept BMW R18 ‘Departed’, the bread and butter of Custom Works Zon is American V-Twin muscle. And with a desire to play in the nearby mountain mud they’ve turned an unloved Buell X1 Lighting into a true weekend warrior.

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STREET TOUGH. BMW R1200GS by Original Café Racer Co.

Posted on June 25, 2019 by Scott in Café Racer, Desert Sled, Racer. No Comments

A few years ago, Sean from Original Café Racer Co in London was lucky enough to ride across Africa with Charley Boorman on a Compass Expedition. The experience inspired a crazy idea; turning a BMW R1200GS into a street racer. “Having successfully designed and customised café racers in the past, I wanted to set myself the ultimate challenge; build four, spectacular, limited edition bikes to commemorate the expedition of a lifetime from Cape Town to Victoria Falls, covering South Africa, Namibia, Botswana and Zimbabwe,” says Sean.

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LONDON CALLING. Bike Shed Show 10th Edition

Posted on May 30, 2019 by Scott in Chopper, Classic, Desert Sled, Drag Bike, Enduro, Event, Flat Track. No Comments

We were lucky enough to have local photographer and moto journo Tom Bing cover the Bike Shed show for us. He is friends with the Bike Shed crew and a lot of the bike builders, so it was great to get a glimpse of what goes on behind the scenes as well as the bikes on display. Words and photos by Tom Bing.

It’s got to be the most exciting weekend of the year in the UK for custom bike lovers. It’s funny, when you’re anywhere near the ‘inner folds’ of something like the Bike Shed, you feel strangely proud of the achievements of all the people who have worked so hard to make the event come together yet again. It feels like a community event – not something you just attend as a punter, but something we are all a part of.

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Throttle Roll Motorcycle Show 2019

Posted on May 24, 2019 by Scott in Board Tracker, Bobber, Brat, Café Racer, Chopper, Classic, Desert Sled, Event. No Comments

Photography by Nick Fraser.

After a two year hiatus, the Throttle Roll Motorcycle Show was back with a vengeance last weekend, as the sound of rockabilly music and motorcycles reverberated through the back streets of Waterloo, Sydney. This year, Throttle Roll was held in an old paint factory that’s been turned into an ultra-hip creative warehouse space called Commune – and that name and venue is fitting for the show. The definition of a commune is a close-knit community of people who share common interests, and we definitely saw a community of liked minded individuals who came together over their love of custom motorcycles, music, food, beer and just having a bloody good time.

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THOR DE FORCE. BMW R nineT by Injustice Customs

Posted on May 24, 2019 by Scott in Desert Sled, Scrambler, Tracker. No Comments

Written by Martin Hodgson

Keep those two wheels turning; across the endless climbs through the Pyrenees, before taking the summit of Alpe d’Huez on the way to the finish line. No, it’s not the Tour De France but how Anton Knutsson of Injustice Customs spends his motorcycling holiday in the European summer; and it gave him an idea. What would be the perfect custom bike to complete the stages of cycling’s grand tours? With the help of BMW and Ohlins he’s built the answer, a 2019 BMW R nineT Urban G/S that’s ready to bring the thunder to the mountain tops, rightly named ‘Thor’.

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MOTO PHOTOS. Deus Swank Rally.

Posted on May 21, 2019 by Scott in Classic, Desert Sled, Enduro, Event. No Comments

Photography & words by Phoenix Naman

When a weekend involves camping under the stars, fresh brewed coffee in the morning, hot breakfast and lunch, and best of all motorcycles, it’s a weekend well spent. That is exactly what Australia saw on the weekend at the Australian inaugural Deus Swank Rally. You might think, “what the heck is a swank rally!?”. Well, it’s a good old fashioned enduro time trial. But not as you know it, it’s a day of fun for the whole family at this friendly championship. Goofy outfits, inappropriate bikes, and a can do attitude are encouraged. Friday night saw keen swankers arrive early to set up camp, and catch up around a fire. Early risers were well caffeinated, and fed thanks to Chef Takeshi and the Deus Cafe team.

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TWIN TERRAIN – BMW R65 ‘Invader’ by 72 Cycles

Posted on May 15, 2019 by Scott in Desert Sled, Scrambler. No Comments

Written by Martin Hodgson

Somewhere in those teenage years most of us, wide-eyed and bushy-tailed, are bundled into a careers advisors office and asked what we want to do with the rest of our lives. Given a whole ten minutes, if you’re lucky, you’re soon agreeing to a job you didn’t even know existed. Now leaving dazed and confused many stumble on this path forever; but not Madrid’s Antonio Schefle. At 40 he packed it all in to follow his dream of building custom bikes. Each a unique expression of his client’s deepest desires, like his latest BMW R65 ‘Invader’, purpose fit to monster any type of road.

In the beautiful country air just outside the Spanish city of Madrid, Antonio setup 72 Cycles Performance in 2012 to pursue his passion. But for him, it’s not just the name of a company or a workshop that builds bikes. It represents his own personal brand of artistic interpretation of the customers ultimate custom craving and then bringing each to life in mechanical form.

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MOTO FILM – Steve McQueen’s First Husky

Posted on May 13, 2019 by Scott in Desert Sled, Video. No Comments

Before Steve McQueen starred in the cult classic film, On Any Sunday, riding his 1970 Husqvarna 400 Cross, there was another Husky that had started his obsession with the Swedish motorcycle brand. That bike was a 1969 Husqvarna Viking 360cc that Steve had bought off world champion Swedish rider, Bengt Aberg, after watching him win a race on it in Santa Cruz. This great little film by Petrolicious explores the story of the “King of Cool’s” first Husky, the history of this incredibly rare machine and where it has ultimately ended up. We love the fact that the owners of this bike, Blacksmith Garage, still make sure this “quarter of a million dollar” two-stroke is ridden and not just sitting as a piece of art in someone’s living room.

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