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Custom BMW R nineT Is a Two-Wheeled Lost in Space Robot

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by Daniel Patrascu from https://www.autoevolution.com

BMW’s latest motorcycle wonder, the R 18, is the freshest Bavarian creation, and the world keeps talking about it even days after it was launched by the Germans. But there are other BMW motorcycles worth talking about, both factory-made and custome, like the R nineT we have here.

When BMW announced it is building a cruiser motorcycle based on the new Big Boxer engine it developed, it did so by tasking custom builders with advertising the powerplant. This is how with about a year left until the actual unveiling of the R 18, we got the Custom Works Zon R18, and later the Revival Birdcage. But the R nineT is even more tunable as the R 18, it seems.

The bike pictured here is the result of work conducted in Moscow by a builder called Zillers Garage, allegedly with the support of BMW Motorrad Russia. It is, in essence, a tuned-up, futuristic version of a stock R nineT.

Officially scheduled to have been shown at the now canceled Moscow motorcycle show, the bike made its online premiere this week. It presents itself as a stock two-wheeled Bimmer that sheds its skin and wrapps itself in a shell of aluminum, one that ends at the front with a large HID lamp that brings back memories of Lost in Space’s Robot.

According to the information available, the modifications made to the standard motorcycle include altering the suspension to bring the body closer to the ground, some changes to the brake and clutch levers, and the additions of buttons required to control the air suspension.

The engine of the R nineT remains the original one, and no modifications have been made to it. That translates into a 1,170cc powerplant, developing 110 hp and controlled by means of a six-speed transmission.

There is no word yet from Russia whether this concept is just a show motorcycle, or some production run is planned for those able and willing to pay.

A Brother Steps Up

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A 1984 Tribute to the new Evolution Platform
By Bandit and Zeke

Zeke, the constantly moving outlaw rode a rigid framed Shovelhead for years starting in 1979, when he slipped out of prison for the first time. He sold his chopped ’74 Superglide in ’75 to help support his family, while he was shipped off to prison.

In ’79 the man cut him out of some dank, concrete penitentiary on a windy spring morning and his first thoughts included sex and building a chopper quick.

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Kawasaki Ninja ZX-25R Racer Custom unveiled – A 250cc track machine

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by Abhinand Venugopal from https://www.rushlane.com/

Kawasaki’s Ninja ZX-25R Racer Custom is a track-only version of the brand’s new 249cc four-cylinder sportsbike

Kawasaki has unveiled the all-new Ninja ZX-25R Racer Custom ahead of its official debut event which had to be cancelled due to COVID-19. The pandemic has caused a lot of confusion among global automotive industries with back-to-back plant shutdowns, event cancellations and rising losses. However, manufacturers have taken social media as an effective platform to introduce their latest products.

Coming back to Kawasaki’s latest product, the Racer Custom variant is essentially a track-focused, track-bred and track-only version of the Ninja ZX-25R that was unveiled last year. The sportsbike’s main highlight is its power plant — a 249cc DOHC liquid-cooled ‘inline-4’ engine that can rev up to a cool 17,500rpm!

So far, Kawasaki has not shared the exact engine specifications of the ZX-25R or its track-only avatar. Various reports state that it could generate around 45bhp and a lot of acoustic drama (way more for the Racer Custom variant). In fact, Kawasaki had shared the exhaust note of its new light-capacity four-banger. To many, it wouldn’t make any sense to split a displacement of roughly 250cc into four cylinders, but for the very few who likes to ride a motorcycle at its absolute limit (in a safe environment) will find a fun machine in Kawasaki’s new ZX-25R.

Kawasaki also plans to introduce a new one-make championship next year with the ZX-25R (and NOT the track-only Racer Custom variant). The race will be open to anyone regardless of their track hours. Meanwhile, Kawasaki has introduced a host of performance and cosmetic upgrades for potential ‘25R’ buyers. This includes racing cowls, tank pad, track tyres (Dunlop Sportmax ?-13SP), Showa suspension, new chainset, performance exhaust, carbon bits and many more.

Sources suggest that Kawasaki’s ‘baby ZX-10R’ will first hit the Indonesian market, after which it will be filtered down to further potential markets in Asia and Europe. India may not get it and we don’t expect Kawasaki to make the effort.

Even though the concept of low-capacity four-cylinder motorcycles is relatively unheard among the wider scenario, such motorcycles have been around since the late 20th century. Kawasaki’s iconic ZXR250 could be considered as the virtual predecessor of the new ZX-25R. One might find 40-45bhp to be a normal figure in this day and age, but these motorcycles require an expert to harness their full potential by shifting correctly in extremely narrow peak power bands.

This Custom Harley Street Bob Is Literal Gold

By | General Posts

by Enrico Punsalang from https://www.rideapart.com/

Sometimes all that glitters really is gold.

Few custom motorcycle builders are as unorthodox and eccentric a the folks at Polish custom shop, Game Over Cycles. Judging from their name alone, you’re certain that they churn out some pretty unique builds over there. Based on Game Over Cycles’ Instagram profile, the shop’s builds generally occupy the steampunk, tribal, and even dystopian themes.

One bike, however, stands out from the rest. This 2019 Harley-Davidson Street Bob was transformed into something entirely unique, something evoking pure emotion on the part of the owner. Dubbed the “New York – Rzeszow Motorcycle”, (don’t ask me how that’s pronounced) this bike was meant to pay homage to the places the owner calls home: New York City, and Rzeszow, a city in Poland.

One glance at this machine is not enough for you to absorb all the tributes and easter eggs that were so meticulously integrated into this work of art. I, literally, could spend hours admiring each and every detail on this bike. For instance, it pays tribute to New York City by depicting the Manhattan skyline and other notable buildings such as one of the World Trade Center towers on its wheels. This also makes the bike a 9/11 monument with more tribute pieces to the buildings involved in that fateful day. Apart from this, an exhaust manifold cover was designed to depict the Chrysler Building which was plated in 24k gold.

Additional details that honor New York culture is the logo of the New York Yankees on the timing cover. The brass fuel tank is painted in black with a subtle depiction of the Brooklyn Bridge on top. The front end was designed to represent the ruins of the World Trade Center with “9/11 Never Forget” engraved at the bottom, a thoughtful touch on the part of the owner.

Apart from the iconic New York and American heritage elements, the motorcycle also depicts Poland’s Revolutionary Act Monument. Situated between the Manhattan buildings on the wheels, it integrates itself into the bridge-shaped seat assembly to which the rear fender is attached via tension wires.

In total, it took the team at Game Over Cycles around 260 hours of C&C milling to craft the metal and golden pieces which adorn this motorcycle.

Stretched 2012 Harley-Davidson Road Glide Comes with $15k Paint Job, 6 Speakers

By | General Posts

by Daniel Patrascu from https://www.autoevolution.com

For garages that don’t have it in them to build a motorcycle from scratch, there are countless bikes out there that can used for a customization process. Few of them are as alluring as the Harley-Davidson Road Glide, though.

Maybe it’s the iconic shape of the motorcycle, or maybe something else, but the reality remains some of the best custom works in the industry are based on this type of two-wheeler. And some of the strangest and extreme, too.

The motorcycle we have here is a Road Glide from 2012, heavily modified by a custom shop and taken to various events across the American continent since it was completed. It is now, once again, selling, this time on the Classic Cars website.

The custom bagger is no longer its former self, having been stretched by means of welds, not bolt-ons. The front end is raked, as a means to accommodate the huge 26-inch wheel fitted at the front. And even the ride height is no longer factory-specced, as it now can be altered at will thanks to the air ride suspension fitted front and rear.

There are, of course, custom motorcycle-specific elements on it, like the polished and chromed surfaces, the alligator skin seat, or the expensive paint job, which is valued at $15,000 alone. But there are also things you don’t usually find on a motorcycle, be it custom or otherwise.

Like the 6 speakers hidden inside the hard bags at the rear. That’s right, speakers, powered by 2 Rockford Fosgate amplifiers.

The current owner of the bike says he acquired it in a trade-in. Originally, the bike and the modifications made to it are said to have cost over $100,000, and it only has 534 miles on it since completed, but the selling price is now less than half that, namely $49,500.

Canepa 1997 Harley-Davidson Heritage Springer Is a New Take at Classic Harleys

By | General Posts

by Daniel Patrascu from https://www.autoevolution.com/

As the most prominent bike builder in the industry, Harley-Davidson never shied away from keeping in touch with its roots. Perhaps this is why, if someone from the 1940s or 1950s would travel to our time, they would still be able to pick a Harley out of a crowd.

Sure, the design of Harley bikes has changed over the years, but not so much as to make them be unrecognizable. But Harley is at times taking things even further, and releases motorcycles specifically designed to be reminiscent of its past.

So is the case with the Heritage Softail Springer first released in 1997 as a nod to the bikes of the late 1940s. Produced in limited numbers, the Heritage Springer quickly became one of the most sought after motorcycles on the market.

The factory-made bikes were incredible to look at and as high-tech as any others of that time, but a few extra touches might be needed now, more than two decades since the model was introduced.

In our quest to find newsworthy bikes to write about as part of our Harley-Davidson month, we came across this 1997 Harley-Davidson Heritage Springer, modified by Canepa Design and currently listed as for sale.

As per the specialist, this is not your regular Heritage, as it has been disassembled and completely redesigned and rebuilt, and every single component was modified or customized to fit right in the “old school theme.”

The bike features things like a reshaped front fender leading edge and added rear edge of fender, a lower skirt, new wheels, and re-upholstered seat, among a host of other modifications.

Powering the bike is an 82ci engine that has been modified too through a lot of grinding and reshaping of the components, linked to a 5-speed manual transmission. The engine has only 5 miles on it since the rebuild.

As said, the motorcycle is on sale on the Canepa website, but no price is listed. https://canepa.com/photo-gallery/1997-harley-davidson-heritage-canepa-design327/

A Brother’s Decade-Long Seat Search

By | General Posts

From Los Angeles to Vegas and Back
By Gearhead with photos by Wrench

Story line started about ten years ago, during the bare bobber era. I was looking for a seat to go with an old school flat-tracker look. I had a pair of Flanders flat tracker bars, but it did not look right with the King/Queen seat. Remember, choppers were dead, done, caput.

I was looking around for that solo look, so when the wife didn’t want to ride with me, I had a solo way to go.

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This Harley-Davidson That Fits Inside a Car Is Perfect for a Batman Villain

By | General Posts

by Elena Gorgan from https://www.autoevolution.com

Why choose between riding a Hog or driving a classic (-looking) car when you can actually do both? Add looking like a retro Batman villain, and this might just be an offer you could not refuse.

If only it were still on the table.

In December 2010, the 1939 Lincoln Sedan Delivery Deco Liner and Harley Davidson Sportster Deco Scoot (this is the official name and what a mouthful it is!) was sold at a Bonhams auction to the Louwman Museum, The Hague, Netherlands. The Louwman is one of the top automotive museums in Europe, home to some of the rarest and weirdest items ever made.

It fits right in.

Completed in June 2008, it is the work of artist Frank Nicholas and Terry Cook of New Jersey-based Deco Rides. The Deco Liner project represents the culmination of 3 years of hard work for the team. It’s a one-off custom 1939 Lincoln Zephyr built from scratch into a delivery sedan, with a matching, modified Harley-Davidson Sportster in the back.

Not only is the Harley-Davidson removable and fully-working, but when stored inside the car, it becomes an integral part of it. The Deco Liner project isn’t about functionality, with the bright purple paint job and ornate bodywork on both vehicles being the biggest giveway. Deco Rides describes it as a way of presenting “two new concepts to the rodding world:” the “concept of the bike in the car” (duh) and the decorative metal trim, inspired by mid-30s Paris coach cars.

No one would hold it against you if you thought it was inspired by retro Batman villain cars, though. It would make the perfect 2-in-1 getaway vehicle for one such baddie, too.

Bonhams describes it a “virtual Fabergé egg on wheels,” which seems to make light of the amount of work that went into building this thing, but is surprisingly accurate. It’s made up of the Deco Liner and the Deco Scoot, with both receiving countless modifications and fully-handcrafted aluminum bodies that earn them the status of works of sculpture.

The Deco Scoot is a custom 1991 Harley-Davidson Sportster chosen for its height, and then lowered and modified, after the Deco Liner was built by chopping the top off and creating the elongated body. The bike can be loaded into the car by means of a nine-foot long aluminum ramp that is deployed and retracted at the touch of a button. When not in use, the ramp is tucked away inside the car, so it’s not visible.

Once in position, the bike is secured by straps and becomes a part of the car interior – the front fender of the bike comes in between the Viper bucket seats and serves as an armrest. So you’d better make sure you don’t get it all muddied up.

The Deco Liner is a Frankenstein of a car made to resemble the 1939 Lincoln Zephyr. Nicholas and Cook used a 1995 Chevrolet Blazer for the front chassis and then built the rear chassis from scratch to fit and carry the bike, discarding the rest of the Blazer. A General Motors Goodwrench 350 cubic inch V8 crate engine was fitted instead of the original V6 in the Blazer.

The front-wheel-drive Deco Liner comes with power windows, power brakes and power steering (though no one is using any as of the time of writing, being on display at the museum), custom black and silver interior, and a 1960-62 Chrysler “goldfish bowl” instrument cluster.

Before being sold off to the Louwman Museum for $117,000 in 2010, the Deco Liner and Deco Scoot were paraded throughout the U.S., causing quite a sensation at the Sturgis Rally in South Dakota, the Laconia Motorcycle Week in New Hampshire, the Goodguys Rod & Custom event in Columbus, Ohio, and the Detroit Autorama, among others. It is now on display with the original lettering on the side of the delivery removed.

A Hubless Harley-Davidson Chopper Is One Sure Way to Get Attention

By | General Posts

For most riders, a Harley-Davidson is beautiful on its own and, if you add the growl of the engine, there’s enough happening to get attention. But there are other ways you can stand out even more, should you be interested.

Hubless choppers are one such option. They are futuristic, almost alien-looking custom bikes built by hand around a Harley-Davidson frame, with wild-looking paintwork and at least one spoke-less wheel. Invented by Franco Sbarro and most famously used on the 1989 Sbarro Osmos, the center-less wheel is difficult to make, difficult to maintain and has many practical disadvantages.

But it’s bound to get you noticed.

Perhaps the first, most famous chopper to get international media attention is the Hubless Custom by New Jersey-based Howard’s Killer Custom, which was unveiled in late 2007 and is believed to have cost no less than $155,000. It is usually included on lists of most expensive motorcycles in the world.

It partially started out as a classic 1969 FL Harley-Davidson, which, in the hands of Howard Sofield, became the most famous hubless chopper in the world. Weighing about 700 pounds and able to reach speeds of 100 mph, the Hubless Custom took 4,000 hours to make and two full years of research and design.

According to Sofield, the Hubless Custom started out with a 1974 swing arm frame and a 21-inch front wheel, the 1969 Harley-Davidson Pan Shovel 80ci engine, 1969 & 1974 Harley-Davidson engine cases, and 1982 Harley-Davidson cylinders. The goal was to make the hubless wheel more practical and to create a fully functional bike in-house.

“Using my experience in drafting and automotive industries I was able to come up with a different way to make the hubless wheel work in a more practical way,” Sofield said upon the bike’s introduction. “Combining that with my Father’s extensive machining and fabrication skills, we are able to create our bike entirely in-house and do things that most every other builder would have to outsource. Over 4,000 hours of design and build time went into this project and we could not be happier with how it turned out. It looks and functions perfectly.”

The downside to this hubless chopper: it is difficult to handle.

Some years, later, in 2014, Ballistic Cycles unveiled their own take on the hubless chopper, this time with a spoke-less front wheel and a rear so low it almost grazed the ground. Called the Hubless Harley-Davidson Road King, it won several prizes right after introduction, including Baddest Bagger at Full Throttle Saloon, Deadwoods Nastiest Bagger and Best in Show at the Easy Rider Saloon.

Ballistic Cycles never went public with how much one such Bagger cost.

But the Road King is a stunner, as you can see in the gallery attached. Ballistic Cycles boasts of being the first custom team to put a 30-inch front wheel on a bike – and a spoke-less one, at it! Add the all-aluminum body with the wickedest paintwork and a twin turbo Harley-Davidson air / liquid-cooled engine, and you get yourself one visually arresting machine.

“Cutting necks and adding a few glass parts is one thing, but truly building a ground-breaking motorcycle takes a bit more time, effort, and a planning,” the official website reads. “The entire front end is completely one off and each and every part is custom for this feature. The hubless wheel is machined from a solid piece of billet, and the brake system is integrated into the wheel. The custom air cylinder is designed specifically for the load endured by the wheel and motorcycle. The mechanics behind the hubless wheel features all the latest technology and completely pushes the boundaries of what is possible.”

The good news: Road King was the first of a long line of similar projects, and Ballistic Cycles is still making and selling hubless Baggers. Any rider with deep enough pockets can get a chopper that will make them get all the attention on the road – and then some.

Weston man builds epic motorcycle to promote saving lives through Be The Match donations

By | General Posts

WESTON – It’s a gleaming, curvy, sport-style motorcycle with a distinct Art Deco look, and there’s no other bike like it on Earth.

Mark Ecklund of Weston took two years of painstaking, detail-oriented work to build it, hand-fabricating most of its body work from thin aluminum. For just the tail section, the 53-year-old machinist took two weeks to patiently and gently tap — using a hand-held, hammer-like metal molding tool — a piece of aluminum into the shape he wanted.

The project represents the ability to save lives. Mark created the motorcycle to honor and promote Be The Match, a worldwide organization that works to match donors of life-saving bone marrow and stem cells to people suffering from blood cancers such a leukemia and lymphoma. In 2012, Mark donated stem cells that were used to save the life of a 53-year-old Pennsylvania man, who is a husband, father and grandfather.

Mark is a serial inventor who has built and designed things such as a one-person hovercraft, a safety faucet that prevents scalding and an improved version of a compound bow, and it’s his habit to enthusiastically and compulsively throw himself into projects. But even for his standards, this motorcycle, once a brand-new Indian cruiser, is special.

A year after the transplant, Ecklund and the stem cell recipient, Todd Euen of Johnstown, Pennsylvania, met and became instant friends. The experience was so gratifying that Ecklund can’t even begin to explain it. All he can say is that the motorcycle is a physical manifestation of those feelings, and a vehicle to promote Be The Match. He and his wife, Chris Ecklund, are doing anything they can to encourage people to register for Be The Match donations.

“We want to bring that awareness to people, to have more people register,” Chris said.

The motorcycle is a work of art, Mark said, “that is more of a campaign.”

‘Forever grateful’

Todd, a controller at a Ford dealership, was diagnosed with leukemia in July 2012. In order to save his life, doctors rushed him to Pittsburgh, located about 66 miles west of Johnstown. If Todd hadn’t gotten treatment, he likely would have died within two weeks, doctors told him.

“I was in shock,” Todd said.

He received Mark’s donation in a procedure done on Christmas Eve of 2012.

Be The Match requires that donors and recipients wait a year after procedures before connecting with each other. After that year passed, Todd contacted Mark to get to know him and thank him.

“I didn’t know what to expect when I met him. He basically saved my life,” Todd said. “It was real emotional when we met. … Our family is forever grateful to him.”

‘I knew exactly what I was going to do’

Chris and Mark decided to become donors when Mark turned 35. They both regularly give blood, and it was Mark’s idea to do more.

“We just wanted to help people,” Mark said.

They found Be The Match, did a little research, and then, almost on a whim, drove to the Appleton office of Be The Match to register. Chris still hasn’t been matched with a recipient.

“I’m really jealous of Mark,” she said.

After meeting Todd , Mark came up with the idea to design and build the Be The Match motorcycle. He talked about his plans with Chris, and she agreed that they should purchase the 2015 Indian Scout to convert. Chris didn’t quite grasp what her husband had in mind; she thought it would be a light modification of the new Indian model.

As Mark started to the project, “I thought, ‘We spent all this money to tear it apart,'” Chris said.

Mark visualized his motorcycle from the start. “I knew exactly what I wanted. I knew exactly what I was going to do,” he said.

He wanted something that would be magnetic to other motorcycle enthusiasts. And even though Chris didn’t know the details, she’s been married to Mark for 29 years. So she wasn’t surprised when he spend nearly all his free time working on the bike. Nor was she surprised at the result.

They take the motorcycle to races and shows. First riders come see the bike, then Chris and Mark go into their Be The Match spiel, and often Chris will get people to register for donations on the spot. (It requires filling out a form and doing some cheek swabs to get DNA samples.)

Jess Klingberg, the Be The Match community engagement specialist based in Appleton, said the motorcycle is magnet for potential donors, helping sign up potential donors by the dozen. She attended a motorcycle rally with the Ecklunds. “That motorcycle turns a lot of heads,” she said.

Todd accompanied Mark and Chris to one show near Pittsburgh, and even though he’s gotten to know Mark and his all-in attitude, he was still surprised at how much gusto both Mark and Chris display when promoting Be The Match.

“They have jumped all in,” Todd said with a laugh.

Be the Match Radiothon

A live, over-the-air Radiothon for Be the Match will be held from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. March 19 on the Wausau rock radio station WIFC-FM 95.5 Jess Klingberg, the Be The Match community engagement specialist who works in the organization’s Appleton office, will be on air to explain details about the program and tell stories about what Be The Match can mean for individuals dealing with cancer.