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RACE TO THE CLOUDS: 2008 Yamaha YZ450F

19.07.2019

Written by Martin Hodgson The Pikes Peak International Hill Climb joins the Isle of Man TT as the two most prestigious and legendary time trials in all of motorsport. The 'Race to the Clouds' pits man and machine against 156 unique turns on the way to climbing nearly 5000ft in altitude before reaching the summit, high in the Rocky Mountains, some 14000ft above sea level. The demands on the motorcycle are only exceeded by those on the body and tragically some won't make it home. But for Thomas Kendall the call of the mountain was strong and he re-built his 2008 Yamaha YZ450F in preparation for his first attack on the lightweight class.

SUPERSIZED. Yamaha XT1100 by Slowbuilt.

18.07.2019

To say the Yamaha XT500 is a legendary bike would be an understatement. More than 40 years later, it is still one of the best thumpers in motorcycle history. After winning the Paris to Dakar rally shortly after its release in 1976, it paved the way for future enduro and off-road bikes. But what if it was released today as a larger capacity scrambler? Jesper Johansen from Slowbuilt in Copenhagen, Denmark, wanted to build a larger capacity XT with all the retro cues of the original classic – only bigger. “I always loved twin shocks dirt bikes,” he explains. “Especially the Yamaha XT500 and HL500 – had a few over the years, especially the white 1976 model XT with the iconic tank decals.”

WORK OF ART: ‘Bauhaus 100’ BMW F 850GS by Krautmotors

16.07.2019

Written by Martin Hodgson Exactly a hundred years ago German architect Walter Gropius founded Staatliches Bauhaus, an art school whose philosophy was based on Gesamtkunstwerk, meaning 'total work of art'. The institution would become incredibly influential in all areas of art and design and although it closed 80 years ago at the outbreak of World War II, its students would spread the philosophy around the globe. So to celebrate the centennial anniversary BMW commissioned artist and bike builder extraordinaire Rolf Reick of Krautmotors to build a motorcycle that would honour all the school represents. Presenting “Bauhaus 100”, a combination of BMW's old and new, it's a tribute and masterpiece.

WORK OF ART: ‘Bauhaus 100’ BMW F 850GS by Krautmotors

16.07.2019

Written by Martin Hodgson Exactly a hundred years ago German architect Walter Gropius founded Staatliches Bauhaus, an art school whose philosophy was based on Gesamtkunstwerk, meaning 'total work of art'. The institution would become incredibly influential in all areas of art and design and although it closed 80 years ago at the outbreak of World War II, its students would spread the philosophy around the globe. So to celebrate the centennial anniversary BMW commissioned artist and bike builder extraordinaire Rolf Reick of Krautmotors to build a motorcycle that would honour all the school represents. Presenting “Bauhaus 100”, a combination of BMW's old and new, it's a tribute and masterpiece.

BRAT RACE. Kawasaki KZ440 by AMP Motorcycles

15.07.2019

Written by Martin Hodgson Take a project of any kind, particularly the weekend tinkering approach, and for generations the world over Fathers and Sons have been swinging the tools together. Whether they're building a barn, restoring the young lad's first car or making motorcycles, it's as much about the relationship as the final result. But somewhere along this journey for Michael Posenauer and his son Allen things stepped up a level and they now run a shop called AMP Motorcycles in Germany. Now from the bones of Michael's first bike comes this 1982 Kawasaki KZ440 LTD that's been given a full Brat-Bob makeover.

RUNS IN THE BLOOD. 1977 Yamaha XT500

12.07.2019

We all have family heirlooms that have been passed down from generation to generation. Like expensive silverware, bone china plates, antique furniture and the most precious of all – motorcycles. We love a good story about a bike being in the family for decades and this is one of those tales. From as young as five years old, Jerrett Bellamy from Ontario, Canada, has been riding this exact Yamaha XT500 with his dad. “He made up some foot pegs that would clamp onto the frame so I could ride in front of him,” recalls Jerrett. “I can remember riding with him hanging onto the handlebar and us popping little wheelies.”

BAVARIA TO BEIJING. BMW R80 by Mandrill Garage

11.07.2019

Written by Martin Hodgson Beijing might be one of the world's largest and oldest cities, with an ever-expanding motorcycle manufacturing industry, but that doesn't mean its smooth sailing for the customisers who call it home. All the big companies have a presence there now, but that is a recent development, so when a client approached Mandrill Garage to build them a slick 1981 BMW R80, finding a donor bike let alone parts was a major challenge. Never fear, as the team of friends simply pooled their collective skills to craft a truly one of a kind BMW Vintage Racer from scratch.

FULL BLOWN. Supercharged Honda CB550 by Popbang Classics

09.07.2019

Written by Martin Hodgson | Photography by Kenny Smith All that glitters is certainly not gold; what was supposed to be a quality custom café racer built by a hot shot from California arrived in Australia a disappointing mess. Some carefully taken photos and a host of hidden problems meant this wasn't discovered until the CB550 had crossed the Pacific. But Justin Holmes of Australia's PopBang Classics came to the rescue and every time the owner asked him to up the ante, he delivered. The finished product is a supercharged 1975 Honda Hot Rod that finally has the Hollywood happy ending.

OVRLANDR. Harley-Davidson Sportster by Combustion Industries.

08.07.2019

Written by Ian Lee. As time goes on, the number of niche custom motorcycle categories increases. Flat tracker, becomes a street tracker, with a touch of café racer, and so on ad infinitum. One area that encapsulates a few areas, while maintaining its own unique identity is the post-apocalyptic style of build. From Icon 1000’s Dromedarri to El Solitario’s Petardo, these bikes have a flavour all of their own. They are visual sledgehammers, built to create conversation, and most of all to be functional. Combustion Industries has just rolled out their latest build, a 2008 Harley Sportster 1200R. Picked for function, as well as form, Michael Bates of Combustion Industries has utilised his experience and contacts in the bike industry to create one rugged bike that looks like it could survive the end of the world.

WORLD FIRST: Supercharged Harley-Davidson Street 750

05.07.2019

As the dust settles on 4th of July celebrations in America, we thought this Evel Knievel tribute Harley-Davidson Street 750 by Number 8 Wire Motorcycles would be the perfect hangover cure. Almost a year ago to the day, thousands watched around the world as Travis Pastrana jumped over the water fountains at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas as a tribute to Evel Kneivel – Evel unfortunately never landed it and the jump almost killed him. Unlike Evel, Travis nailed the jump and made it look easy on his Indian Scout FTR750. There were a few Harley-Davidson loyalists that were shocked at the jump, not because of the death defying distance involved, but because Travis was doing it on an Indian – not a Harley XR750 he was famous for riding. One of those HD enthusiasts contacted Colin at Number 8 Wire and commissioned him to build a Evel Kneivel inspired Harley using the Street 750. “My brief was to design and build an Evel tribute bike with the underlying directive of What Would Evel Do?”

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