‘Type 7c’ Yamaha SR400 – Auto Fabrica

‘Type 7c’ Yamaha SR400 – Auto Fabrica

The custom motorcycle scene can be a competitive game, for all the comradery and sense of community that makes the industry such a wonderful thing to be part of, businesses still have to make a quid. For the workshops that build custom bikes that means selling at least enough of them to pay the rent, it’s fair to say we all take a pay cut for our art, but a man’s got to eat. To achieve this

The Ghost – Triumph Speed Triple

On one of my visits to Indonesia in 2015 I met Nicko Eigert the energetic young entrepreneur behind Bali’s Smoked Garage. Nicko’s workshop is quickly becoming one of Indonesia’s top custom workshops with a partner store located in Queensland, Australia. Last year, inspired by the Lotus C0-1 concept Nicko and his team constructed the Smoked Garage ‘Bronco Racer’. Built on a Kawasaki ER6N platform the project challenged them more than any build they’d undertaken before. Constructing a one-of-a-kind full aluminium body, revising frame geometry and designing a bespoke cooling system were just a few of the challenges they overcame. After delivering the Bronco to it’s new owner in Australia Nicko has been looking for an opportunity to produce another similarly styled motorcycle and 5 short months ago he got his chance.
CONTINUE READING »

‘Frau Türkisblau’ BMW R90/6 – Custom Culture Co.

‘Frau Türkisblau’ R90/6 – Custom Culture Co.

For more than a thousand years the Czech city of Prague has been one of the political and cultural centres of Europe, a thriving community of intellectual thought and creativity. So important is the city centre and its ancient buildings that it’s listed as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO, an honour normally reserved for single structures like the Taj Mahal or natural wonders such as Uluru. The first criteria for such a listing is that the place “represents a masterpiece of human creative genius and cultural significance”, so you could hardly ride around the place on a plastic fantastic 250cc number and be doing the city any justice. Instead the appropriately named

Review: 2016 Triumph Bonneville T120

Review: 2016 Triumph Bonneville T120

The challenge Triumph gave themselves when redesigning the Bonneville was nothing short of Herculean. As a company whose entire brand rests on one hundred plus years of biking heritage, this is the bike around which their entire world revolves. How hollow would their references to legendary motorcycling heroes such as Steve McQueen and Marlon Brando sound if the new Bonneville missed the mark? So to this end, the brief from John Bloor, Triumph’s owner, was as clear as it was short. It had to be as good as the original ‘59 Bonneville T120, “and whatever you do,” he said “do not fuck it up.

Sugar Kane – Suzuki GSX250 Cafe Racer

“We found this Suzuki GSX250 on a Greek island named Othonoi in the possession of a retired Lighthouse Keeper. Its journey to our workshop in Athens took 3 months instead of the normal 3 day journey, so it kind of stayed true to the island’s very history. Legend says that Othonoi was the home of the nymph Calypso who stalled Odysseus for seven years, so we believed the bike itself had been lost or forgotten wandering the seas. I guess it was a stroke of luck that it ever arrived!”
CONTINUE READING »

The Guy Next Door – Kerkus Cycles Suzuki GS550

When was the last time you talked to the guy next door? In Kuala Lumpur neighbours Azahar and Azree Zo discovered one another’s passion for cafe racers during a friendly neighbourly chat. That discovery quickly developed into a strong friendship, which lead to the formation of their own custom motorcycle brand in 2012. Four years on their backyard hobby has grown to become a working business located in Kampung Baru, Kuala Lumpur that goes by the name of Kerkus Cycles.
CONTINUE READING »

‘The Missing Piece’ Yamaha XJR 1300 – Jigsaw Customs

’The Missing Piece’ Yamaha XJR 1300 – Jigsaw Customs

Written by Nick D.

The deafening chorus of engines scream by. The crowd collectively gasp, as legendary Grand Prix World Champion, Barry Sheene dangerously cuts up his opponent’s inside but somehow manages to slips back in, just ahead of them into the corner. Sheene cheekily flips his opponent his signature two finger “up yours!” from the hip, then roars on to take the checkered flag.

Oldscool Mechanics – Triumph Trident cafe racer

“There are many other beautiful café racers that already exist, but this one was built to put those in its shadow.”

When I first read the email from Belgium workshop ‘Oldscool Mechanics’ that brash statement left me feeling a little apprehensive. As I read on however I started to understand where the confidence behind that statement came from. This was no ordinary build. Rather than following the classic cafe racer recipe these guys had started out with something a bit left of field, instantly making it unique. They’d also used their experience in racing to fabricate parts that you won’t find on any other bike, parts that were put together for the express purpose of making the bike better. Finally, and most importantly they’re proud of what they’ve done, and while it’s easy to start naming other bikes to compare this one to I have to admire a man (or men) who is proud of his own work.
CONTINUE READING »

‘Das Taco’ BMW R80 – Box-Werk Custombikes

‘Das Taco’ BMW R80 – Box-Werk Custombikes

Written by Martin Hodgson.

In the quiet German city of Oldenburg a highly skilled carpenter whittles away his days designing and crafting the finest furniture from timbers gathered from the local oak forests. But by night a darker side comes out to play, the chisel and mallet swapped for the tools of a blacksmith, here the carpenter turns motorcycle builder creating minimalist machines with the single purpose of carving up those same forests in a totally different way. Meet Marcel Papenberg who’s turned his passion and skill for motorcycle building into a second business,