Custom Bikes Of The Week: 28 May, 2017
This week, we’ve got a stunning repli-racer from Estonia, a vintage scrambler from Argentina, a Burt Munro tribute from the US, and a ‘Fusqvarna’ from France. Enjoy.
Triumph T140 scrambler by Herencia Custom Garage Argentina’s Herencia Custom Garage was catapulted to local fame via a custom build-off show on Latin America’s Discovery Channel. The shop now offers everything from a clothing line to organized rides and a dedicated media department, but it’s their growing catalog of work that keeps them on our radar.
This latest creation is a 1979 Triumph T140 that’s been tastefully scrambled. Builders German Karp and Federico Cubik were given free reign by their client—but instead of going wild, the duo kept the look simple and clean and focused on performance. The suspenders at both ends have been upgraded, with Öhlins units in the rear and a set of USD forks from a Ducati up front. The swingarm was extended by two inches to deliver more stability, and the Trumpet’s rear hub was swapped for a CB750 item, along with its binder. Motogadget has assumed the minimal electrical duties and the front brake’s master cylinder has been mounted beneath a hand formed, alloy tank, to clean up the cockpit and enable HCG to use Tommaselli Matador levers.
The complete package looks tough enough to tackle Baja and elegant enough to score its own turf at the Quail. Well done, chicos. [More]
SWM ‘Martini’ racer by Renard I’m sure I’m not alone in thinking that the Martini Racing livery is easily one of the most beautiful and recognizable colorways to grace motorsports. You could slap it on a Yugo and I’d undoubtedly lock on and smile at least a little, before shaking my head. But add it to an expertly crafted repli-racer like this svelte 2-stroke from Renard Speed Shop and you’ve got my full attention.
Andres Uibomae and his Estonian team are no strangers to these pages but the donor bike that lies beneath that gorgeous bodywork certainly is—a SWM RZ 124. Now, you may remember that SWM experienced a renaissance not too long ago but the bike Renard has used here is actually a 35-year old barn find, a relic that happened to have single-digits on the odometer but fired up without issue. Speedy Working Motors indeed.
With a racer’s stance in mind, Andres swapped the rear shocks for shorter, firmer units and the forks were completely rebuilt. The footpegs and some other hard bits (including the shifter) were all created in the Renard workshop. The tank is from an equally obscure, Belarusian M1NSK racer Andres had ‘just lying around’ and the exhaust is a Yasuni unit found in a moped shop.
Of course, the fairings and paintwork are the show stoppers here. The way Renard has hacked up ill-fitting mail-ordered bodywork and stitched it all back together is nothing short of fantastic. If you’re lucky enough to be strolling London’s Tobacco Docks for this weekend’s Bike Shed show, take a closer peek. [More]
Spirit of Munro Scout by Indian Roughly four weeks ago, I stood on hallowed ground. I’d scraped myself from the comforts of a hotel room bed and made a pre-dawn trek to visit the home of speed. The Bonneville Salt Flats are a truly mesmerizing place, but it’s the legends that drew me there.
One of those legends is Burt Munro and the 50-year-old tale of chasing speed on his shed-built bike. To pay tribute to The World’s Fastest Indian, America’s first motorcycle company has created a homage to Burt’s old bike using the new Scout as its base. The ‘Spirit of Munro Scout’ is a salt flat streamliner with modified internals and taller gearing to help the great nephew of Burt, Lee Munro, pilot the bike down that same bed of salt later this year.
Built internally by Indian, this Scout came together as an after-hours volunteer project by a handful of engineers. Their aim wasn’t to create something that would shatter Burt’s 184 mph record, but to honor his dedication and legacy with America’s oldest bike brand. The bodywork is absolutely exquisite and for which Indian’s team deserves applause. Now let’s just hope Mother Nature cooperates, and the salt bed has enough time to bake before the run. [Indian Motorcycle]
Harley Sportster café racer by Ardent Motorcycles When I learned to ride just over twenty years ago, my dad was kind enough to let me swing a leg over his then-new Sportster 1200 Custom. As the years passed, we dabbled in some custom touches, too. On the whole, what we did was tasteful, but entirely keeping with The Motor Company’s catalog of choice. If we were to do it all over again though, I would head in the direction of Michigan’s Ardent Motorcycles and their new Organic Cafe.
Of course, the skills pops and I posses aren’t quite up to Ardent’s level. The frame on this racer is a hand built custom unit designed to deliver a compact package, with the rear engine mounts grafted right into the frame. This tightened up the rear end and allowed Curtis Miller to fit a shortened, custom swingarm as well. Then the tank and tail were both hand formed from aluminum units and exquisitely machined foot controls installed.
On the performance side of things, the heads on the 1200cc twin have been ported, and compression now sits at 11:1. A more aggressive cam is conducting the show and a custom exhaust provides the crescendo. Curtis figures this is “the fastest, most powerful, best handling and most beautiful bike” to roll out of his shop yet. We don’t disagree. [More]
Honda FX650 by Garage de Félix No, your eyes are not playing tricks on you. That is indeed an ‘F’ painted on that tank. Your cognitive dissonance is flaring up because the shape and the color (RAL 3002) of the dino-juice repository is clearly a mid-60s Husqvarna unit. So what gives?
The F is for Félix—as in Garage de Félix, the French builder with a knack for outside-of-the-box customs and tasteful tributes. The Fusqvarna Scrambler was created by Antoine and Patrick to pay homage to the 100-year old marque, while still maintaining the Je ne sais quoi that defines a Félix build. The donor for the Fusqy is a Honda FX650 Vigor…
Once completely stripped, the Honda’s subframe was torched for a minimalist look harking back to the Huskies of yore. It’s one of the prettiest perches I’ve seen in awhile: The floating seat is wrapped in Alcantara and everything was made completely in-house. The pod filter hanging out below is new, as is the blacked-out, custom exhaust, but outside of that the engine is bone stock. Motogadget was used to clean up the cockpit and a new, smaller headlight was mounted. Outside of the seat, I think my favorite bit on this build is the trick license plate mount. Merci, les gars, c’est sensationnel. [More]