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Sunday
Oct122014

Continental Scout by Analog Motorcycles

I'm sure many of you have seen the 1949 Indian Scout from Analog Motrorcycles coined "The Continental Scout" on the interwebs. What we wanted to present was a more personal approach with words from Tony Prust and some in process shots of the build. For those who haven't had the honor of meeting Tony, he is a highly respected in the custom arena. He is a very talented builder! Not only has he been wrenching and riding for close to 15 years, his builds have been shown on countless sites and he is currently the face of the Pro Builder Series from British Customs. On a personal note, he is modest, friendly and all around amazing dude. We couldn't have been more honored to share booth space with him this weekend at the Barber Vintage Festival. Thank you Tony! If you are at Barber, you still have time to stop by the Vanson area in the upper paddock and meet one of our favorite builders.  
~Sasha Valentine 

 

Here are the in process shots:
 

Now some personal words from Tony Prust:
"Many people have asked me to do a Harley build and I have pretty much declined on a regular basis as there are many HD builders around here and I am not really drawn to the design of the engine. The engine to me is the heart of the bike and I prefer using engines that have more character. I did however want to build an American made build but my options are limited seeing as HD is the only one with some older bikes that are worthy if customizing. Mostly anything else is super rare and difficult to find. And when you find one you don't want to customize it. This Indian was too far past a restoration point so it made for a perfect candidate. It also just so happens to line up with Indian making it's come back. That was merely coincidence though. Doesn't hurt on a marketing front though.

The build originally started with my buddy that went to the guys shop and saw it with me. I gave him my idea for the bike and we set a budget. Then we blew it like 3 times so I ended up sitting down with him and telling him my creativity for this one was going beyond what we had discussed and that the only way to really pay myself on this one we would probably need to sell. At that point he became the investor in the project. And once complete we would see where it landed cost wise and he would either buy me out of my portion or we would sell and recoup costs and split anything left over. So there is a magical number we are looking to get but not throwing it out there just yet. It isn't cheap though as it's a completely hand built machine so it's not priced for the faint of heart. But if you are interested feel free to send me your offers and I can let you know if you are near the top of the list or not. We have already had a couple interested parties but at this time I am using it for media and promotion for Analog and showing it off. It will be at the Barber Vintage festival this weekend in Alabama. Then the plan is hold onto it and take to the Quail gathering in May next year and show it off there a bit.

The engine builder used to race these and Warriors and hand cut 5 billet cylinders during the 70's. He happened to have one that never was used so we gut that one. He made or modified several internal. One of the engines short comings were the heads. The push rod tubes thread in from the top and you are supposed to tighten and then back out but most people didn't know that so they would tighten and when the engine heated up it expanded the push rod tubes and cracked the heads. I called around hunting for heads and after about 4 different sources, I found a guy in Maine that said he had a bunch up and would call me when he went through them. Said he found 30 of them and out of the those 3 were not cracked. So I picked 2. When I received them the castings were very different so I had to machine the bigger finned one down to match the smaller finned one. That little engine was quite the challenge to get it to the level it was. And then Mikes polishing blew my mind at how well he got it polished up. 

It rides great. Still working out a few bugs but nothing major. For a 500cc 65 year old engine and design it's not a bad little machine. I think Indian was on to something but didn't spend enough time in the development stages to make it last. It's light and nibble as well. I'd guess 380lbs and maybe 38 hp. This is merely a guess but shouldn't be too far off." ~Tony Prust

The details:
-Track Master style frame made by Frame Crafters
-All aluminum tank, seat and fairing designed by Analog formed by Pavletic Metal Shaping
-Brass light covers and fender formed by Mike Ardito
-Polishing by Mike’s Polishing, Rodsmith, and Analog
-Engine built by Bill Bailey of ZyZX Vintage Motorcycles
-Engine has hand cut billet cyclinder, 12 volt conversion and Dyna III electronic ignition.
-Carburetor Amal 928
-Exhaust custom made by Analog with parts and stubby mufflers from Cone Engineering
-Custom made oil tank with internal plumbing made by Chassis Services
-All plumbing designed and made by Analog
-Paint and clear coat by Kiel of Crown Autobody
-Gold leaf and pin striping by Brando
-Seat by Rod’s Designs
-Magura controls
-Speedometer designed and rebuilt by Seattle Speedometer
-Tarrozi rear sets
-Betor Forks and triples
-TZ750 hubs with custom detailing by Analog
-Spokes and rims made by Buchanan’s
-Speedo mount, rear sprocket and oil manifold machined by Free Form Design
-Gas cap by Crime Scene Choppers
-Piaa LED headlights
-Radiantz puck LED taillight frenched into seat hump
-All custom electrical. Battery and fuse block under seat hump
-Custom made bar switch by Analog,
-Modified GSXR windscreen
-Maund Speed equip velocity stack
-Avon Road Rider tires
-All custom made cables by Ed Zender at Morries place
-Extremely strange and difficult to design custom kick starter lever (version 5) by Analog
-Top oiler lines made by HEL brake lines
-Probably forgetting a bunch ;-)
Tuesday
Oct072014

Ride With The Rockers to Barber

The Cafe Racer XXX | Soul Custom "Ride with the Rockers to Barber" starts today!! Follow along here as we weave our way south from Pittsburgh, PA to Birmingham, AL with rendezvous points in Columbus, OH, Cincinnati, OH, Louisville, KY and Nashville, TN.  Our final destination is one of the most prestigious motorcycle events in the world- The Barber Vintage Festival !! 

First, we want to give a SPECIAL THANK YOU TO OUR RIDE SPONSORS!

                

*WE WOULD ALSO LIKE TO THANK OUR PARTNERS AND PARTICIPATING TON UP CLUBS INCLUDING: Ton Up Club Chicago, Steel City Rockers, Ton Up Columbus, Cincinnati Cafe Racer, Louisville Vintage Motors, Pseudo Moto, Ton Up Club Nashville, Do The Ton, and the Blackbirds!

FULL SCHEDULE AND EVENT POSTER HERE:

Tuesday
Sep302014

"The Fast Black Bitch" by Choppahead

Choppahead is known for their finger in your face personalities, hardcore videos that date back before the new breed of motorcyclists hit puberty and some bad ass custom Triumph choppers. They will be quick to let you know they build "Choppah's" pronounced with all the Boston draw that even if you were a full blooded New England-er you'd be scared to admit it. In my book, these guys put the real "punk" back into motorcycling. With a mask of pissing people off with their outspoken rhetoric and sometimes offensive clothing line, it only hides the teddy bear soft affection these guys have for all things motorcycles. This and their constant goal to build everything better has only gained them legendary status in the alternative motorcycle world. I've got to admit I got a couple VHS Choppahead movies in my collection (those are the big tape deck things from back in the 80s). Just Kidding! But before I ever opened my shop doors, I knew and respected these guys so when I first saw their Triumph engine, mono-shock, BSA framed bike, it was of no surprise that I fell in love. The fact that these motorcycle lovers built a "street race" bike is awesome. I hate the "Cafe Racer" name being put on a style of a bike because in my mind it is a "person", not a "thing". Choppahead hit this street raced machine out of the "bauwl pauwck" (that's Choppahead speak for "Ball Park"). They prove that deep down inside of that brutal and intimidating exterior, Jay and his crew are "Cafe Racers" at heart. Check this out if you have any doubts.  -Kevin Dunworth

Now some words from Jay at Choppahead:

"Back in 2009 our good friend Andy was in the market for a custom Triumph while we were in the market for some heavy-duty plumbing at our new shop. So after a lot of trading of work for work and a little bit of money, we built him up a cool little rat. Fast-forward to 2012, we had just got finished with the Tronza. Andy stopped by the shop and was floored. He was determined to own a Choppahead Cafe bike so we told him that when we found a cost-effective donor, we would throw one together for him. We picked up this 1978 Triumph t140 and immediately had Andy on board. Although he loved our monoshock bike, his vision of a café racer was a little more traditional. When we build bikes for a good friends we try to keep it a little more on a budget but we want to be able to showcase our work so we always end up over doing it" - Jay

Full shoot of the bike including under the cover photos:

 

Technical Specifications:
Bike 1978 t140
Displacement 750cc
Wheels 19" front powder coated/ 18" rear powder coated
Tires  conti go
Clip ons ebay
Rear sets ebay/Choppahead
Headlight lucas 5 3/4
Seat cowl Pete chase Cafe Cycle
Paint Choppahead
Rotors Harris / lightened
Brakes triumph stock disc
Ignition boyer electronic
Carbs AMAL 930
Sprockets 20 on the front 45 on the rear

Thursday
Sep182014

Welcome Larry Fletcher

I started attending the Mid-Ohio Vintage days in the late 90’s. It’s funny because I would never have considered it the “old days”. Very few women attended and no fashion or scene existed. Just old dudes, racing, swap meets and motorcycles. Where I came from and at my age, no one was into these types of bikes. It was cool to see some of the clubs roaring in and out and laughing and having fun along the way. I’d seen Larry a few times before. He always had a huge smile on his face and in passing we began to recognize each other. At one event, he was selling comic books and since I love collector stuff, I went and introduced myself. Hours later he went into almost all of the history aspects of motorcycling that I loved. This guy was cool!! He later grabbed me a Scottish brew and we shared some laughs. I set the imagery to show how rare a guy Larry is. He is a genuine 'people person' who is immersed in the lifestyle of motorcycling. My story is just one of hundreds I’ve heard about Larry. In my opinion you can shake Larry’s hand and know that if wasn't for guys like him, motorcycling would not be coming back like it is today.

For years now I have called Larry a pal. His smile became so iconic he was chosen as the face of some of Triumph America’s Marketing. Sasha and I have had the pleasure of working with Larry in many different capacities over the last few years. And when you live as many days on the road as us you become fast friends. 

Photo Credit Yve Assad

Below is a revised post from another great friend of ours, Sarah Lahalih. She sums up a bio that puts together why we are so excited to officially have Larry Fletcher on our team. This was originally blogged by Sarah for Chicagonow.com , a Chicago Lifestyle blog site. I believe this helps drive home the character and reputation for those that don’t know Larry.

Please look for a ton of new stuff coming out as we grow the Café Racer XXX family with the best talent, riders and enthusiasm this industry has to offer. Welcome Larry!

-Kevin Dunworth

I am not alone when I say, when I think of motorcycle culture, specifically vintage motorcycle culture in Chicago, I think of Larry Fletcher, or Fletch as we all like to call him. Larry Fletcher has ridden Triumphs his whole life. Not because that’s what he could afford. Not because that’s what was passed down to him from his father, who rode motorcycles before starting their family. No, Larry has ridden Triumphs his whole life because his dad took him to see The Great Escape, The Wild One, and Coogans Bluff. “Steve McQueen, Marlon Brando, Clint Eastwood, those guys were the coolest of the cool.” Larry was a frequent visitor to Santa Fe Speedway on Chicago's south side in the late 60's and early 70's. Where Gene Romero and Gary Nixon tore up the dirt oval on Triumphs. Gary and Gene were both AMA Grand National Champions during that era and were both featured in On Any Sunday. Not to mention, Larry watched Evel Kenevel jump (and crash) a Triumph over the fountains at Cesars Palace in Las Vegas. “That was the time I grew up, and that is what I was influenced by. So it is not surprising that I wanted a Triumph as my first bike.”

Fletch’s riding career started when he was 10, his home was located near the entrance to some woods and the neighborhood kids were all riding their father’s British bikes that were set up for dirt. His friends were happy to share their motorcycles with him. It was not until the mid 80’s, when Larry relocated to Chicago, that he finally found his first bike,” A beautiful 65 Bonnie, black with 9’s on the side covers .The 9’s were in honor of Gary Nixon - his national racing number. Unfortunately, it was stolen, but it was quickly replaced with a totally stock and original ‘65 Bonnie.”

At the time, the vintage motorcycle scene in Chicago was not really developed. There was a Vincent MC that would meet at the Bucktown Pub every Wednesday, but “eventually the Harley riders started showing up, and that was the beginning of the end.” The Vincent Club took their bike night private, and began meeting at a private shop on Goose Island.

As a self proclaimed Triumph Geek, Fletch booked a trip to London in 1994. He had 3 specific goals for that trip. A visit to the Triumph factory in Hinckley, to attend the Chelsey Bridge Rockers Reunion and to check out the Stafford Swap Meet Motorcycle Show. While on his trip, Fletch visited the site of the original Ace Café London, and instantly found inspiration to open the Ace Café Chicago.

The Ace Café Chicago was opened 3 years later. The first event the café hosted was called The Battle of Brighton, and it was an instant success. Then came the Vintage Motorcycle and Scooter Show, and event that most riders in Chicagoland aught not miss.” What I enjoyed most about the café, was hosting the events.”  Eventually, the Ace Café Chicago closed, but the events did not stop. In fact, they multiplied in number and in attendees.

In 2005,The Vintage Motorcycle and Scooter Show turned in to an event called Mods vs. Rockers. There were over 200 attendees at the first annual event. It is still going on today, and has grown every year. Somehow it is able to maintain the same pure vintage culture it had when it began 6 years earlier. The estimated attendance for the 2011 event was over 1000. Also in 2011, Mods vs. Rockers had it’s first huge unsolicited sponsor. Triumph Motorcycles sponsored the event.

I asked Larry what it meant to him to go from daydreaming about riding his first Triumph as a child while watching motorcycle movies about outlaw bikers, to having that very company be the marquee sponsor of an event that he created almost 30 years later. “I thought it was great, I had seen Triumph at the forefront of the industry in the 60’s, then almost distancing themselves from their past when they returned with new bikes in the early 90’s. Now it is very clear they are embracing their heritage again, and I love seeing that and being a part of it.

Mods vs. Rockers gets its name from its history in England of the clash between the Mods, who were typically fashionable well dressed art students, who were into Jazz music and rode scooters. Rockers modeled the “American Greasers” and were typically dirty, dressed in leather, listened to Rock and Roll, and rode motorcycles. There were feuds between these two groups, which eventually led to riots in Brighton. The riots were highlighted by the film Quadrophenia.

Mods vs. Rockers is one of many events that Larry and his crew host throughout the year, others include:

Motorcycle Mondays- 1st Monday of each month, May - November at Five Star Bar

Rockers Reunion- Early May each year at Ace Motorcycle & Scooter with Live Rockabilly and BBQ

Pints & Pistons- Bikes & Burlesque (Wednesday evenings at Holiday Club)

Rockerbox Run- The Official Chicago ride to Rockerbox

Acetoberfest- Motorcycle and scooter Rally

Hell Rider - Halloween Party...This year it's called Hell Rider vs. Godzilla...At Ace and the Bottom Lounge

In 2009 Larry started the Steel Toe Press and created Mods vs. Rockers Comics. They just released issue Number 4. The T-Shirt and apparel line is called Mods vs. Rockers Gear and can be purchased at www.mvrgear.com.

I look forward to attending many more of his events. So does local business owner and Triumph dealer Johnny Scheff. Johnny and Fletch have worked together on several events, and this is what Mr. Scheff had to say about Larry.” Larry has nurtured and grown the vintage motorcycle scene in Chicago, with no motive other than fun and love. He is the real deal. He loves the bikes, loves the people, and loves the culture. He is the common denominator that bridges the gap between little cliques to make the best events.”

I asked Larry what was next for him, he said he is secretly hoping that Quentin Tarantino will make a movie based on the Mods vs. Rockers comic books.

-Sarah Lahalih