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7 Great Gift Ideas for Motorcycle Riders


There’s a bewildering amount of gear available for riders these days—we’ve never had it so good. And with Christmas looming, the tills are starting to ring. So we’ve put together a tight selection of gear and gifts that are exceptionally popular with our readers, or likely to strike a chord with the motorcyclist in your life. We aim for quality rather than quantity when choosing which products to stock, and the gear we sell is tested by the guys who operate our London-based store. If it’s not up to scratch, it doesn’t make it in. If you want to treat yourself this Christmas, or would like to drop a hint to your significant other, check out these gift ideas for motorbike lovers.…

Fahrenheit 160: Renard’s Smokin’ BMW Bobber


We’ve seen so many bad BMW customs—and sketchy bobbers—that hearing both words in one sentence makes us nervous. But the Estonian outfit Renard Speed Shop never disappoints. They’ve knocked this BMW bobber out of the park, and straight into orbit. The key to Renard’s success is twofold. They have an incredibly keen eye, and they have a near fanatical dedication to details. This handsome bobber started out as a classic BMW R100, brought over from Germany—but there’s not much of the original machine left. “Even though the bike still looks like a BMW, it’s actually completely modified,” shop boss Andres Uibomäe tells us. “The engine and the frame are relatively original, but everything around them is not.” By ‘relatively original,’ Andres means that he and his crew completely stripped, restored and cleaned the motor, gearbox and final drive.…

SS1000 Carbon: A rapid Ducati 900 SS from Moscow


We don’t see many customs from Russia. But Moscow-based Birdie Customs and their founder Ilya are doing their best to remedy that, with a slow but steady stream of classy performance customs. Birdie’s Ducati 900 SS knocked us out a year ago, and they’ve just returned with an even faster 900 SS, built in a different style and taking on board lessons learnt with the previous Duc. It’s sleek and stylish, and there’s nothing else quite like it—especially in the Federation. “Sadly, Russian custom culture is far behind the international community,” Ilya tells us. “Clients mostly ask for Harleys with long forks and engraving; customization of a Ducati or BMW R nineT ends with a catalog.” “Bike EXIF has made us rethink our projects and create something new and much more ‘technological’.” This bike is called ‘SS 1100 Carbon.’ Ilya and his crew started with the frame of a Ducati 900 SS i.e.…

A fresh spin on the airhead BMW custom from Vagabund


Vagabund Moto have built some of the sharpest BMW airheads we’ve seen. They’ve developed a signature style too: custom boxers with stark, futuristic lines, and amazing attention to the tiniest of design details. But the Austrian builders Paul Brauchart and Philipp Rabl don’t want to be pigeonholed into one style. They’ve decided to change it up, since they often find themselves working with very similar donor bikes. “We try to not stand still in our designs,” says Paul. “If you mostly do BMWs—which was never our intention—then you need to keep it interesting by trying new things.” This latest boxer (‘V11’) is just as slick as their previous work, but with a slightly more classic bent. According to the brief, this 1991-model BMW R 100 R needed to have “a more vintage touch, with brown leather, and a place for a first aid kit.” (Kits are a legal requirement in Austria, and the client lives in a region with strict policing.) The most obvious change is the fuel tank.…

Icy Fresh: the Impuls x BSTN Ducati 916 ‘Concord’


If you’re a sneaker freak, you’ll know all about the Air Jordan XI Concord. Designed by Tinker Hatfield, it’s part of the legend that surrounds basketball player Michael Jordon—and it’s also the most popular model in the iconic Air Jordan range. Michael Jordan is a keen motorcyclist, and even backed a race team a few years ago. So it feels appropriate that the XI Concord has become the catalyst for a very striking new custom from Impuls of Germany. The idea came from the German sportswear label and retailer BSTN, and it’s a real light bulb moment. “Duki from BSTN approached us to build a motorcycle for the release of the Jordan XI Concord,” says Impuls main man Philipp Wulk. “There would be a video shoot, and we would have just two months for the whole build.” Philipp suggested the Ducati 916 as the donor bike.…

Custom Bikes Of The Week: 9 December, 2018


A pair of BMW R NineT customs channeling the past and the future, a glorious Rickman Metisse, and an all-time classic Honda race bike. It’s a mixed bag this week. Rickman Metisse by Chelsea Borchert The Rickman Metisse is the quintessential desert sled, and one of the most iconic motorcycles ever. It was developed by the Rickman brothers in England in the early 60s, as a kit that could be ordered to fit the owner’s motor of choice (which, more often than not, was a 650 cc Triumph twin). But did you know that you can still build a MKIII Metisse today? That’s exactly what Chelsea Borchert did. Her dad had a 1962 Rickman Metisse, so when she sold her last bike and started figuring out a replacement, the nostalgia hit hard.…

Two new vintage style motorcycles from 46Works


It’s around this time of year that all the top Japanese builders release their latest customs. Many workshops have spent weeks burning the midnight oil to get a bike ready for display at the Yokohama show, but Shiro Nakajima of 46Works has been even busier than most—he’s just revealed two amazing new builds. We’ve been following Nakajima-san’s work very closely over the years, going back to his days as CEO of Ritmo Sereno, Japan’s premier BMW and Moto Guzzi restomod outfit. So when he told us he had not one but two motorcycles to show, we were almost as excited as Japanese game show hosts. Nakajima has played to his strengths here, with a BMW R100RS and a Moto Guzzi Le Mans 1000—two platforms that he’s very familiar with.…

On the ground at Mooneyes: BMW unveils a 1800 cc custom


We’re in constant awe of the Japanese custom motorcycle scene. Our compadres in the Land of the Rising Sun have an approach to customization that’s as unique as their culture—hallmarked by unrivalled levels of creativity and craftsmanship. But thanks to geographic and linguistic limitations, it’s a world we mostly admire from afar. The Yokohama Hot Rod Custom Show is the best of Japan’s custom moto (and hot rod) scene, distilled down to a potent one-day hit. And last Sunday, I was there to take it all in. Also known simply as the Mooneyes show—after the company that’s been organizing it for 27 years—it’s a must-attend event. Roughly 300 motorcycles, and twice as many cars, cram into the Pacifico Yokohama convention center.…

Banana Bike! An XS650 inspired by 1970s chopper bicycles


I’ll let you in on a little secret: the Bike EXIF team doesn’t always agree on what’s hot and what’s not. But no motorcycle has polarized opinion as much as this whacky Yamaha XS650. In the end, fun and goofiness prevailed. And so we present Bonanza Krad, a bicycle-inspired Yamaha, from the hands and minds at Germany’s Benders Company. Based in Wiesloch, Benders is a five-man team founded by Christian and Raphael Bender. The brothers grew up fiddling with bikes, selling them to finance new projects or to travel. For this build, they went right back to their youth—drawing inspiration from the Kynast Bonanza bicycles of the 60s and 70s—a kid’s chopper bike popular in Germany, similar to the American Schwinn Sting-Ray and the British-made Raleigh Chopper.…

The 2019 Triumph Speed Twin revealed: specs and images


One of the most famous names in the history of British motorcycling has returned: the Triumph Speed Twin. It first caused a stir in 1938, when Edward Turner’s parallel twin offered unprecedented levels of power for a 500 cc bike. The original Speed Twin created a template for many other manufacturers to follow, and the lineage is still visible in Triumph’s ‘Modern Classics’ range today. But the new Speed Twin is a very different beast. With 1200 cc and almost four times the horsepower of its predecessor, on paper it’s a cracker. It’s recognizably a Bonneville, but with a pumped-up, muscular style and a very obvious focus on the riding experience. It’s more than a boulevard cruiser, and is likely to trouble bikes such as the established Ducati Monster and BMW R nineT, and the incoming Indian FTR 1200.…

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