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Solid Gold: Greg Hageman restyles the Yamaha MT-07

20.11.2018

Wrap any decent Yamaha in a good King Kenny livery, and you’ve got an instant crowd-pleaser. But this Yamaha MT-07 from Greg Hageman is much, much more than just a pretty paint job. It’s one of the most successful MT-07 conversions we’ve ever seen. We’re used to featuring XSR700s on these pages, but the MT-07 (previously known as the FZ-07 in the States) is essentially the same bike. Its 689 cc parallel twin motor is lively, its chassis is nimble, and its price tag won’t hurt your wallet too much. You just need to tweak the styling—which Greg has done with a master’s touch. This particular MT-07 is a 2017 model belonging to Michael Martens, and it’s the fourth Hageman-built bike in his garage.…

The Bike EXIF Moto Photo Contest is back

19.11.2018

We all like taking photos of our bikes, capturing memories of weekend jaunts and adventurous road trips. So once again we’re giving you a chance to win riding gear and motorcycle accessories from four of our favorite moto brands: Velomacchi, REV’IT!, NEXX and Rizoma. The theme is simple: ‘My Favorite Road.’ Show us where you like to ride, and include your bike in the image. It might be a twisty mountain road, a wide-open highway under big skies, a forest track, or even a tight city street. We want to see where you twist the throttle. How to enter You can send in up to three shots, and we have two categories for entries: Privateer and Professional.…

Custom Bikes Of The Week: 18 November, 2018

18.11.2018

A Triumph styled like a Citroën, Norton’s new Atlas 650s, and a retrospective look at Honda’s racing Monkey. Are you ready to get weird with us? Moto Guzzi Le Mans 850 by Gas and Oil Motorcycles The Czech workshop describe their experience customizing this Le Mans as a ‘brush with royalty.’ They clearly respect the Italian marque highly—and they’ve done it justice with this purpose-built cafe racer. Shop founder Matěj Sysel wanted to build a traditional and classy café, but with modern touches. The donor wasn’t in a great state though, so the team first had to overhaul the motor—and while they did, they bumped it to 1,000 cc too, just for good measure. Other upgrades include Dell’Orto carbs and SuperTrapp silencers.…

The Kawasaki ‘W1R’ that took seven years to build

16.11.2018

The bikes that are revealed on these pages are usually hot off the press. The shoot is finished, the images are graded and an email lands in our inbox within a couple of days. This amazing Kawasaki, however, first surfaced two years ago at The Quail Gathering. And it’s only just been shot properly. But that’s okay, because the bike took master builder Mike LaFountain seven years to complete—and nearly broke him in the process. Mike has created a stunning replica of the ultra-rare W1R, which was Kawasaki’s late 1960s equivalent of the legendary Matchless G45 production racer. “Years ago, I came across a photo that would haunt me for nearly a decade,” says Mike. “It was a blurry black-and-white shot of a motorcycle that I’d never heard of.” This was the only known shot in circulation of the W1R.…

Custom Heritage Softail: One Way Machine’s ‘Quartermile’

15.11.2018

When Harley-Davidson celebrated its 115th anniversary with a party in Prague earlier this year, it invited a select few builders to present a custom Harley each. And with a remarkable three AMD World Championship podiums to his name, Julian von Oheimb was an obvious inclusion. The German builder—who operates as One Way Machine—has a knack for turning Harleys into subtle, tasteful customs, and his anniversary build is a stunning example. Called Quartermile, it’s a dark and minimal cruiser imbued with drag bike style. Despite the low-slung ergonomics and race slicks, it’s not actually a race bike. The visual cues come from an idea Julian’s had buzzing around in his head for years—since he fell in love with a Billy Lane Knucklehead with slicks.…

SG-411: A Royal Enfield Himalayan from Smoked Garage

13.11.2018

The Royal Enfield Himalayan has been creeping into showrooms around the world by stealth. Originally designed to be a simple, mid-size ADV for the Indian market, it’s now on sale in the USA and Europe. Custom builders love simplicity, which makes the Himalayan a good candidate for stripping down without getting bricked by an electronics glitch. So the UK arm of Royal Enfield called up Bali’s finest, Smoked Garage. “The Himalayan’s all-terrain capability makes it perfect for a flat tracker-style build,” says Smoked’s Nicko Eigert. Royal Enfield wanted a ‘modern’ looking bike, in line with the DNA of Smoked Garage. The caveat was that functionality could not be compromised too much: Smoked had to retain the original qualities and characteristics of the Himalayan.…

Juiced! A McLaren Orange Yamaha MT-10 from deBolex

12.11.2018

The Yamaha MT-10 is about as mental as naked bikes get. The 998 cc inline-four makes a stonking 158 hp and 111 Nm of torque, and backs up those numbers with razor-sharp handling. But with layer upon layer of angular plastics—and even fake air ducts—it’s the antithesis of everything the modern custom scene stands for. That’s a minor hurdle for our friends in south London, deBolex Engineering. Partners Calum Pryce-Tidd and Des Francis have developed a reputation for building tasteful motorcycles using traditional methods and meticulous re-engineering. Now they’ve used their skill set to rework the Transformers-like MT-10 into a machine that is still mechanically aggressive, but far more refined visually. The project was based on a brand new MT-10, commissioned by a company called Bonesheart to promote a custom motorcycle lottery.…

Juiced! A McLaren Orange Yamaha MT-10 from deBolex

12.11.2018

The Yamaha MT-10 is about as mental as naked bikes get. The 998 cc inline-four makes a stonking 158 hp and 111 Nm of torque, and backs up those numbers with razor-sharp handling. But with layer upon layer of angular plastics—and even fake air ducts—it’s the antithesis of everything the modern custom scene stands for. That’s a minor hurdle for our friends in south London, deBolex Engineering. Partners Calum Pryce-Tidd and Des Francis have developed a reputation for building tasteful motorcycles using traditional methods and meticulous re-engineering. Now they’ve used their skill set to rework the Transformers-like MT-10 into a machine that is still mechanically aggressive, but far more refined visually. The project was based on a brand new MT-10, commissioned by a company called Bonesheart to promote a custom motorcycle lottery.…

The biggest hits (and a miss) from EICMA 2018

11.11.2018

In Europe, the motorcycle industry is in booming. Sales rose over 7% in the first half of 2018 compared to the previous year, and Germany was the standout country with a rise of over 10%. Europe’s biggest motorcycle market by sheer volume is Italy though, with 130,000 bikes sold in six months. Fittingly, Italy is also home to the huge EICMA motorcycle show, which has been running in Milan for the past week. There’s been a real buzz around this year’s show, with dozens of new model debuts and concepts. These are our favorites, plus a potential major dud—and it was a hard job to choose. Arc Vector Arc is a company you’ve probably never heard of, and neither had we.…

Cohn Racers’ Harley XR1200X is ready to play dirty

09.11.2018

If you love the wall of torque delivered by a Harley V-twin but not the laidback handling, the Sportster XR1200X is the bike you need. The XR1200X was the sportiest of Sportsters, with over 90 hp on tap from a high-compression engine, and supple Showa ‘big piston’ forks. At the start of this decade, it was sold in Europe for a couple of years—then filtered through to the US, where it won plaudits from road testers and owners alike. The rarity of the XR1200X means we don’t see many in custom shops. But Cohn Racers managed to find one, and have tweaked it for better performance on both asphalt and hard pack dirt roads. The shop is run by Chete P-Ilzarbe, who left Apple to found his own motorcycle garage.…

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