Words by Justin Benson | Photography by Speedy Donahue
Sometimes we revive old motorcycles, and sometimes they revive us. Every April for the last 6 years, Revival Cycles plays host to a moto gathering that quite literally brings one back to life. Scorn from long winters of blizzards, cars not starting, and frozen nether-regions, it’s the exact type of event to put fuel in our tanks, and melt the icicles off our dipstick. Let me tell you – this year’s show was no exception.
Words by Justin Benson.
Revival Cycles’ latest build; “The Birdcage”, at first glance – looks to be the work of a madman. Showcasing BMW’s newest prototype boxer engine, the frame is entirely comprised of titanium (a first for the Revival team), made up of 150 separate pieces, taking a full 2 weeks, day and night, to finish welding. Almost every piece on the bike was fabricated in house, with great attention paid to design, function, and most importantly – weight. The asymmetrical frame of “The Birdcage” weighs in at a mere 25 pounds, and thanks to the beautiful marriage of hexagonal carbon fiber suspension and CNC-machine aluminum parts, it’s light as a feather. The only hint of color on the bike comes in the form of the frame and titanium exhaust system, which were anodized, adding a subtle peacock purple and green shade to the metal.
It’s hard to deny that Moto Guzzi hold a rather special place in the pantheon of motorcycles. They’re a whole lot cooler and unusual than your average Ducati. They’re definitely more passionate than most BMWs. And there’s little doubt that they can out-sport most Triumphs, even if it is by their looks alone. In what you could call a Lamborghini-esque niche, they seem to occupy that perfect world where collectable, beautiful and unusual intersect. Which makes a custom Guzzi even more of an impressive proposition. And when they’re done as well as the bikes that have been rolling out Austin’s Revival Cycles in recent years, it’s a wonder that the other shops haven’t given up and gone home. Meet their latest and quite probably their greatest, the ‘78 Le Mans Special.
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This aesthetically pleasing mini documentary was shot by filmmaker and photographer Ryan Scheer for Helm boots. There are six in the series and this one focuses on Alan and Stefan from Revival Cycles in Austin, Texas. The guys talk about their love for motorcycles and how grateful they are to be doing what they are doing – narrowly escaping a life in the dreaded cube farm.