One of the best named motorcycle blogs on the information super autobahn is Eat The Rich — after the classic film and Motörhead song. The blog is run by classic parts dealer Peter Stansfield from the U.K who is always buying and selling custom parts for many different types of bikes. Last year he came across this drag bike frame for sale on ebay and knew he had to purchase it. “I bought the frame for £170 and the rear slick for £10″ he says. “I bought it from the guy who originally built it in 1968, he raced it first with an iron 6T motor then later put a Hillman Imp engine in it. It was last used in 1974 when he built a new bike.”
Sometimes in life you have to be careful who you share your dreams with. They might be shattered, stolen or in this case, they might be bought. You see this 1975 Yamaha R5 was bought by Doug Devine a few months ago after seeing it sitting at his friend’s place gathering dust. “This project started when a friend showed me a ’72 Yamaha R5 he had been storing in his shed for the past five years” recalls Doug. “Upon his move from Austin to Louisville, my friend had intentions of bringing her back to her former glory, but life happened. After a few months of sporadic conversations about the bike, the R5 was mine.” Unlike his friend, Doug didn’t mess around and jumped straight into planning this lil’ smokers reincarnation. We thought we’d let Doug describes the project in his own words:
The country of Wales is famous for producing two things, the singer Tom Jones and also for mining many precious metals. Ironically, precious metal was all that was left when Welshman Andrew Greenland stripped the plastic off his 1997 Honda Dominator and did a ground up rebuild. Andrew has a serious perchant for Honda Dominators and he does them impeccably. This isn’t the first Dominator he has built, and by the sounds of things it won’t be his last.
You’ve probably never heard of Karles Vives. He is not famous in the motorcycling world and up until 6 months ago he had never attempted to build a bike. That all changed when he picked up a 1982 BMW R100 and Jeremy Churchill’s ‘BMW 2-Valve Twins’ book and decided to turn a tired old beemer that was drowning in panniers and a chunky fairing into the classic styled scrambler of his dreams. When we spotted this bike, it got our attention like a red rag to a bull and wanted to find out more about this Spaniard and his classy German scrambler he affectionately calls ‘Scram’.
Can you tell us a little about yourself and your background?
Hi, my name is Karles Vives and I live and work in Barcelona, Spain. I’ve been working as graphic designer and creative director for more than 15 years, but my passion for motorbikes started 20 years ago when I purchased my first motorbike. It was an all red Vespa Primavera 125 that I used to call “the red Baron” :-). Many more followed that first one, from custom to trails, sportbikes, or nakeds, until I got the current BMW GS 1150 Adventure one. I love everything related to “vintage culture”, from photography to music, design or fashion.
I was lucky enough to get an invite to tag along with the uber fun Mister Mark Hawwa and his band of merry Sydney Cafe Racers rebel rousers (yes, them again) last Sunday for their first ever ride-out. Unfortunately Scott couldn’t make it (he has his macramé classes every Sunday morning) so I was left holding the fort, or handlebars and camera in this case. Though not at the same time. Mostly. There were some silly cool bikes along for the ride, including the super slick with her new owner Rob – but more on them soon. In the meantime, here’s the best of snaps.
We please hope you do like very muchly.
A while back we had our inaugural ride day north of Sydney and we spent quite a bit of time fielding questions from the punters regarding various aspects of the day’s proceedings. There were the questions about the dirt sections. Questions about the meet points. Questions about the weather, and questions about the timings. Then there were the questions about the fuel stops. Most of them came from a single email address and we started to shoot the poop with this guy who seemed a little obsessed with exactly how far it would be between refills. “My tank only holds four litres,” he told us. One single, lonesome gallon? What kind of bike has a four litre tank? “It’s an SR with a Honda Monkey tank on it,” replies Mr. Refills.
Woah. Wait just a single freaking minute here, talkative email dude who is surely trying to have a comical lend of our senses. Did you just say “an SR with a MONKEY TANK on it?”
One of our supporters and co-founder of LA’s Falcon Motorcycles recently shared his all time favorite two-wheeled machines with Architectural Digest. We guessed some of you might not be reading Architectural Digest every day, so for those that missed it, enjoy. Words by Ian Barry himself.
1923 Brough Superior SS80 “Old Bill”
Nicknamed “Old Bill” after a cartoon character popular during World War I, this was the personal sprint bike of George Brough, the founder of Brough Superior in Nottingham, England. Brough was a consummate showman who dubbed his handiwork “the Rolls-Royce of motorcycles,” and in this modified version of his SS80, he put his machine where his mouth was. This bike will be an influence in the creation of the Vespertine Falcon.
The more eagle-eyed of you may have noticed a new banner on Pipeburn over the last few hours. No, your eyes don’t deceive you – we are now proudly sponsored by the world’s finest bespoke custom bike builders, Falcon Motorcycles of Los Angeles, California. In case you have been in suspended animation for the last few years and haven’t heard about Ian Barry and his visionary team at Falcon Motorcycles, they are generally acknowledged as the best custom bike builders in the world. They also have an amazing range of factory parts, tees, gear and limited edition prints for sale in their online store. If you like what you’re hearing then support us and try clicking on the banner below, visit the store and pick yourself up some goodies in between drooling like a fool over their work.
Here’s to Falcon – many thanks from us to them for their support.
It’s been a while since our last Imaginary Garage, and in that time we’ve had more than our fare share of smack talk in the comments sections of our beloved blog. It seems that everyone seems to know best, and everyone seems to have the world’s best taste in customs. But let’s face it, it’s easy to talk the talk, but can you all walk the walk? What’s that? You can? Well, here’s you chance to damn well prove it! As you’ve probably noticed, above we have ourselves one brand splonking new 2011 Kawasaki W800, a sweet bike that were lucky enough to review recently. We’ve done a few dream bikes lately, but for a change we thought we try a more realistic bike this time around. So now it’s up to you lot to take a modern classic and make it, well, classic-er. And kick ass-er as well.
From The Archives
Back in Match of ’74 Sonny Newal of Vista, California hardtailed this ’49 Panhead then narrowed and lengthened a stock springer a total of 4-inches. For the sheet metal, Sonny “flat bottomed” a Sportster, chopped up a 5-inch FLHT tank and a dude by the name of Lee Moye lacquer painted this sweet machine candy pearl orange. I sure he and his ’ol lady as well as his brothers in the Rouges MC dug cruising the California coast back in the day. STC
Photo Gallery: 1949 Harley-Davidson Panhead – Street Chopper Magazine
Photo Gallery: 1949 Harley-Davidson Panhead – Street Chopper Magazine