Harley-Davidson Sportster Forty-Eight Adorns Cali’s Customs Scene

by Silvian Secara from The man behind this spectacular feat goes by the name of Archie Adelan and is an L.A.-based fellow who loves custom bikes just as much as we do. Today’s project is based on a 2014 model from Harley-Davidson’s vicious Sportster Forty-Eight family. This two-wheeled machinery is brought to life by an air-cooled Evolution V-twin behemoth that prides itself with an astronomical displacement of 1,201cc and two valves per cylinder head. At approximately 4,000 rpm, this untamed mill is fully capable of supplying as much as 79 pound-feet (107 Nm) of twisting force. A six-speed gearbox is tasked with channeling this generous oomph over to the rear 16-inch hoop by means of a belt final drive. On the other hand, stopping power is taken good care of by a hydraulic brake rotor and a two-piston caliper at the front, along with a single disc and a one-piston caliper at the rear end. Now, the Forty-Eight wouldn’t exactly be your first pick for a donor when seeking to create a custom cafe racer-style build, but a motorcycle enthusiast named Archie Adelan loves a challenge. The motorcycle guru goes about his daily business in Los Angeles, California, and his Sportster-based venture is a personal exploit he has painstakingly crafted in his spare time. For starters, Adelan fabricated an array of bespoke bodywork units that definitely look the part, including a fresh front fender and a sexy pair of side panels. Additionally, the bike’s curvy fuel tank is the work of Storz Performance, while the pros over at Alchemy Motorcycles upholstered the saddle with classy leather to complement the desired aesthetic. The Alchemy crew is also responsible for the Forty-Eight’s new LED lighting kit, which incorporates a neat lighting strip at the rear, joined by LED turn signals on […]

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Rough Crafts Takes Harley-Davidson Sportster Forty-Eight on a Bespoke Adventure

by Silvian Secara from Are you ready to meet the grooviest Sportster Forty-Eight that’s ever roamed our roads? As of 2010, a gifted aftermarket wizard named Winston Yeh founded Rough Crafts in the Taiwanese capital of Taipei. His enterprise specializes in developing an extensive selection of aftermarket items, as well as creating some of the raddest custom two-wheeled masterpieces you’ll ever have the honor to encounter. Generally speaking, the workshop’s range tends to revolve around Harley-Davidson’s creations, but the RC team will gladly tackle just about any motorcycle brand on their magnificent bespoke exploits. As I was navigating through the firm’s portfolio, I stumbled upon a glorious creature based on a 2012 Sportster Forty-Eight. This build was completed back in 2015 and served to let everyone know these folks aren’t playing around. It features an intricate display of meticulous craftmanship that’ll leave you genuinely speechless. In fact, let’s take a minute to examine what’s at hand here. The donor is put in motion by a malicious Evolution V-twin behemoth, with an astronomical displacement of 1,199cc. At approximately 4,000 rpm, this nasty piece of air-cooled machinery will generate up to 79 pound-feet (107 Nm) of ruthless twisting force. A five-speed transmission channels the engine’s unholy power to a belt final drive. Rough Crafts kicked things off by outsourcing a retro Dunstall GT front fairing replica and reshaping its windshield to fit the desired aesthetic. Instead of discarding its factory gas tank, the crew went about sculpting a pair of knee dents that complement the lines of the aftermarket front fairing. Ultimately, these refinements add up to a stunningly fluid design language. At the rear, we notice a single-seater quilted leather saddle and one handsome cafe racer-style tail section, which houses the bike’s relocated oil tank. Next, RC browsed The Speed

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Harley-Davidson Forty-Eight Gets Low Stance and High Exhaust

by Daniel Patrascu from Two weeks after we started, we came to the end of our Harley-Davidson King of King’s coverage. Of the 15 bikes that took part in the competition, only one is left, the one its builders call the Harley-Davidson XL 1200 FT. The creation of Harley’s dealer in Bordeaux, France, the build started life as a regular Forty-Eight, and received a number of changes meant to alter its appearance and performance and make it suitable for the Harley-designed contest. As usual, the shop had to respect the budget limit imposed by Harley for the bike to be admitted into the competition, so the changes that have been done to the stock machine are not necessarily extensive, but they are effective. To give the bike – officially called XL 1200 FT – a meaner appearance, the rear has been shortened and the exhaust has been raised to a higher position. At the front, the fork has been paired to high performance shock absorbers that also help give the motorcycle a lower appearance, and there’s also a special housing for the headlights. Engine wise, not many modifications have been made to the stock engine. The shop did add new camshafts and a high-flow air filter, but that’s about it. “Our XL 1200 FT brings together modern and historic elements of the brand to make it a somewhat timeless motorcycle,” said the French dealer about the build. As did all other bikes that have been entered in the competition, this too needed public votes to win. In the end, it failed to do so, and the title went to a Mexican build named Apex Predator. King of Kings was a competition dedicated to Harley’s international dealers. 15 bikes were featured on the roster from all around the world, all

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Blacked Out Harley-Davidson Melville Has More Tattoos Than a Yakuza Henchman

by Daniel Patrascu from Technically, this modified Harley-Davidson Forty-Eight has been designed to be incarnation of a bunch of Japanese myths. Looked at from afar and in a totally superficial manner, it looks more like something the Yakuza would ride around on. The bike is the creation of Harley-Davidson’s dealer in Shizuoka. It has been the shop’s entry in the King of Kings competition whose winner, the Mexican Apex Predator, was chosen by the public in April. Called Melville, the motorcycle was once a stock Forty-Eight that received both a serious makeover and a bunch of new parts. The shop had to stay true to the rules of the Harley competition, and that meant taking at least half of the custom parts from the Harley inventory. A long list of such hardware, including things like the rocker covers, the saddle, or the fuel cap, are also of Harley origin, but new to this Forty-Eight. What strikes the eye the most when looking at the bike is the way it looks. The pitch-black apparition lacks the chrome parts others are so in love with and use extensively on their builds, and even the fork is black. The only thing that breaks the trend is the extensive drawing on the fuel tank and some of the other new parts on the motorcycle. According to the people behind this build, the tattoos displayed in a silver that perfectly offsets the dark tone of the bike are supposed to separately represent things like “prayer,” “death,” and “awe,” and combined to form some type of myth that is easy to understand if you’re Japanese. Of course not all those who voted in March and April were Japanese, and many of them probably didn’t get the message the builder tried to send, so the bike

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Harley-Davidson Sport Rod Is Forty-Eight Gone Bad

by Daniel Patrascu from Good or bad, expensive or less so, Harleys are meant to be customized. Even the bike maker knows this and not only allows it, but also encourages such endeavors, including within its own ranks. In April, a Harley custom motorcycle building competition ended, with a bike called Apex Predator taking the win. The competition, called King of Kings, was Harley’s way of rewarding its international dealers that build incredible bikes at times. The Predator had to battle 14 other motorcycles from around the world to get the popular vote. The one here, called Sport Rod, is one of those 14. The motorcycle started life as a standard Forty-Eight, but was turned into something else by a Benelux dealer called Motor Saloon. The shop went for an “impressive, dark and sleek hot rod” look, and the first step to achieve that was to lower the ride height and replace the standard tires with flatter ones. To fit better with the new stance, the mudguards too were modified and lowered. The custom hardware that has been added includes the tank, taken from a Sportster Custom, the headlight visor, a chin spoiler and, of course, the dedicated saddle. The crew also fitted LED turn signals for maximum effect, but most importantly, the color scheme chosen for the bike – a combination of Vivid Black and Silver Denim – leaves no room for interpretation when it comes to what these guys were going for. The engine of the motorcycle was left pretty much untouched, but some of the hardware it needs to breath properly has been improved: there’s now a new air filter and straight exhaust pipes. The Sport Rod seen in the gallery above is street legal and it cost no more than €6,000 ($6,500) to make. Although

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