Long Beach Swap

I don't know if you can blame it on the economy or weather, or what, but the LB Swap was killing it this weekend. The same group is doing one in Nor Cal (Vallejo) this coming weekend: LINK. The Blue Collar Moto Blog has the best pic collection from this past weekend, check it here: LINK. Thanks to everyone who stopped by the van and said hello.

Pink Taco Update

Duane Ballard is coming to Biltwell HQ tomorrow to do a fitment test on the seat he's making for my Street tracker project. He's making good time on my shit and his own crazy custom bike. Here's some more photos for your viewing pleasure:

The view from the rear. Duane's building his bike around a dead CB750 carcass—the finished motor is MUCH more dope than this roach.

The bird cage structure forms the gas tank and the backbone of the entire bike. The fender will be integrated into the frame, and it forms the back of the tank.

Another view of the birdcage in progress.

After fabbing the birdcage, I promised Duane I'd take him and his chassis to S&M BMX for some really nice TIG welds. Timmy Balls is the S&M shop foreman and a chopper freak himself, so he's psyched to help. Thanks in advance for all the help, Balls.

OL Contest #1

OK, here's the first of it's kind. Worked for Easyriders and Beaver Hunt right?...

Send in a pic of your mom, sister, goat, or 'ol lady in a Biltwell shirt and we'll pick one lucky winner and send them a shiny new banner for their garage. Shirt can be homemade, but the girl needs to be at least 18 please. Other clothes optional. We'll post 'em in about a day so get to snappin!

Send to bill@revcreative.net

Eric's bike

This is a friend of ours Eric's bike. We met Eric a few years ago and have ridden thru NY and Mexico with him and a real stand up guy. No real reason I'm posting this bike other than I think Eric has done a really nice job with this softail. Totally clean great lookin, functional, rideable bike. See ya at The Bash Eric!

Banners Are In!

We just got some slick banners in today. They are 17"x47" and printed on vinyl with black grommets for hanging in your garage, shop or the ceiling of your master bedroom.
$20 and you can get them at the Unit1Parts.com site.

Dealers, talk to us about getting them free with certain orders.



The Pitch

Lowdown on the Hoedown!

Our buddy Josh (not BF) over at Standard Cycles is printing up some special edition skate decks and will have them at Kutty's Hippy Killer Hoe Down Thursday night before the BASH.


Failing is funny.


Helmets in The Netherlands!

Motorcycle Storehouse in The Netherlands is now a Distributor for all things Biltwell and the helmets seem to be going over well. Thanks Annemarie!

Helmets in Sweden

I can't read any of it but our helmets are in a Swedish Motorcycle magazine.

Thanks Mats!

Tattoo John not "Lefty"

Is a great guy and artist that we have come to know on the EDR. He lives life to the fullest! I got a text this morning from someone saying John had a wreck in his truck this weekend and fucked up his left arm. If you know John and now more details holler at us and let us know. Take care of that arm and heal up soon John.

Knuckle Up!

Just a traditional shop type shirt that'll be available soon...


FXR Progress

Made significant progress on the FXR so far this weekend. I was doing pretty good Friday 'till my friend Todd showed up with a case of Oaked Arrogant Bastard. Thanks, dude! You want to see things grind to a halt, chug a couple of those babies. Anyway, the good news is that it runs! That means my stripped down wiring job with the stock ignition module worked, so that has me stoked. Got the tank fitted and a bunch of little details buttoned up. I struggled with ideas for a Bates headlight mount and everything felt way too fussy and too chopperish for this bike. In the end, the stock sporty eyebrow and light (with a flat lens halogen bulb) won out. I dig the look, and I ain't afraid of a little chrome on this thing. McGoo came over today and we dialed in axle spacers and rear pipe mount which is a little bit of a bitch with these rubber-mount engines. I think it's as good as it gets but we'll see after some shakedown miles. Bad news is I'm a dumb ass and got a right side slider off an earlier bike so the late model sporty caliper won't work on the right side. Hopefully I'll find one at Long Beach tomorrow. If not, it'll be a single disc for the Bash and I'll swap it out later. I am digging the late model sporty dual pot calipers though, they are going to be a tight fit with the mags, but cool. Also struggled with bars. This bike likes to be ridden hard into corners so it's begging for a tight flat-tracker bar, but I just can't reach that far (this thing is long!) and I like to ride this bike all day, so as bad as I wanted some stubby race bars, they just wouldn't work. I tried about six different bars from my stash and was actually stoked how comfy the Frisco bars ended up being. I usually run those close to straight up and down, but on a bike this long, they've got to lean back at the same angle as the fork legs. I've run these on the last two bikes so I shouldn't have been surprised that they worked out on this one too. 1 1/2" trimmed off the ends and I'm in business. Also shaved down the controls and the paint is drying now on those. So another hour or two worth of work and I should be shaking it down. If anyone is sitting on a right side 39mm slider with caliper mounts, hit me up! email: billb67@verizon.net

See some of you guys tomorrow at the Long Beach Swap, ask for a sneak peek at the new cast stainless seat hinge...

New Motorcycho #23

My favorite 'zine and the wold's best stickers! MOTORCYCHO $5 gets you the latest and some stickers, $10 gets you last 3 and more stickers, $20 gets you an envelope crammed with crap (zines, stickers, postcards, buttons....) Paypal to Motorcycho@gmail.com.

We Interrupt this Chopper Blog to Talk More about F1

The Australian GP is this weekend. I'm an F1 fan, and this year's tech tweaks promise to make the '09 season even more exciting than last year. If anything, this year's smaller wings, return to slicks, 18k rev limits and brake-energy reclamation systems have only made the cars faster.

If you're a fan of the sport, then you remember that Lewis Hamilton needed 5th or better at the last race to win the '08 title by one point. The McLaren driver nipped the guy in fifth place in THE LAST TURN to do just that. This year The Champ will be defending his title in a McLaren that has so far proved woefully shy of that task.

Competition will be fierce between Ferrari, Renault and Ross Brawn's newly formed, Mercedes-powered F1 team. Honda sold their program to the legendary pit boss that helped Michael Schumacher win all seven of his titles at Renault and Ferrari, and now Mr. Brawn will rely on Rubens Barrichello and Jenson Button to earn the points that eluded the Japanese behemoth during their most recent campaign in the world's top auto-racing series. I've been a fan of Honda F1 since their days with Alain Prost and Ayrton Senna at McLaren Honda, so I'm pulling for Rubens Barrichello (Schu's subordinate but no less talented teammate at Ferrari) and Brawn GP this year. Who doesn't like a Cinderella story?

There's another great story about driving an F1 car on Jalopnik that lovers of all things motorized will appreciate. This video shows automotive blogger Nino Karotta churning butter in the cockpit of a Renault R24 car. Enjoy:

The Australian GP will be on Speed Channel late Saturday night, and I plan to put my current jet lag to good use by watching it.

Portrait: Trent Schara

You meet a lot of people in this business. Lots of them all are all hat and no cattle. Not so with Trent. We met Mr. FTR in person for the first time on the 2006 EDR. What you see is what you get. Want someone to cup your balls or hump the latest trend, better look elsewhere. Want someone to build a bike with style that is meant to be ridden hard, this might be your guy. He throws a good gig in ABQ every year - the Ground Zero Throwdown. A visit to the Atomic Compound if you are lucky enough, is worth the trip in itself. Check out his bikes section for a look at what he builds. Like the man himself, they are purposeful and have soul, something this scene desperately needs. Check out his new high-speed web site here: LINK

Semper Fi.
. .

Street Chopper 40th Anniversary

The Big-Four-Oh.
Our Bromantic love interest, Jeff over at Street Chopper shot us an update today. Seems they are working on a 40th anniversary shovel head for the next issue, due out May 15th or so. You'll see our forward controls, seat and seat bracket on the bike and from the illustration maybe some Keystone bars too. They've also got some cool stuff in store for the BASH, more on that as the plan gets dialed in...


McQueen / Hamilton: The Duel

You don't have to love expensive watches, F1 or Hollywood iconoclasts to enjoy this video:

Lewis Hamilton is the current Formula One World Driving Champion, Tag makes watches and Steve McQueen's reputation is burned in celluloid. You'll have to wait for the next viral video to see who wins the race, but I bet Tag's ad agency wins a Clio…


Parts Hunting

I'm looking for a couple parts for a 9" South Bend lathe. Headstock cover (#3 on ill.)

Both gearbox tumblers & knobs (#27-#32 on ill.)
eBay, I know, I know...

Almost Ready!

BASH sponsor Gabe from Afterhours Choppers is almost ready to go,
only a couple more details and his knees will be in the breeze any minute now...

Wild Things!

Scraper, this one 's for you. Poached from Bend.

Ride the Wild!

Poppa Wheelie.
Great photo and story to go along with it. Read it here: LINK


FXR UPR 2.0 update

Well, it's starting to look like a motorcycle. Not sure what kind of motorcycle exactly, but at least it's getting closer to rideable again. BF Josh gives me shit for picking an ugly bike like an FXR. The whole "polishing a turd" thing, you know? Well, I bought it because I've heard so many people say so much good stuff about them, and it seems to be at least partially true. It feels like a long wheelbase Sportster but with weird ergonomics. I think I got that sorted out with subtle seat mods and by lowering the rear slightly. It was a fun bike to ride before I started messing with it, and it should at least stop better once it's back together (added dual discs to the front). Once I get it looking a little less "Ride to Live" and beat the bugs out of it I really want to start some performance mods. That'll have to wait until after summer though, there is a lot of riding to be done in the next few months. As for the looks department, I'm still waiting to see how it shapes up off the lift before I decide if it's cool or not. I had no plan for this thing, no style to emulate. It's no traditional chopper that's for sure. It ain't brat style, and I'm not a big Pro Street fan. Whatever. Basically it's just a mash up of things I like. Relatively affordable. Relatively reliable. Superglide tank. Fork covers. Narrow glide. Non-essentials eliminated. Duane Ballard seat. Sparto. Mags. Circuit breakers. Black. Chrome. Stiff springs front and rear. Mid controls. It'll only get simpler as it evolves. Hopefully it evolves into a running motorcycle before the BASH, that's all I really care about at this point.

Duane kicks ass in so many ways. Another perfect job. Thanks!

Kill 'em All...

Working on a couple new shirts, here's one...

Wild Wild Wes

A little bird told me Wes at Four Aces is working on another video... In the meantime, you can get his Triumph rebuild DVD from Biltwell dealer/distributor Lowbrow Customs. Thanks for the spy pics Keith.

Here's what Tyler at Lowbrow has to say about the upcoming video: English 101 is a full tune and service dvd covering pre unit and unit Triumphs and unit BSAs, and is scheduled to be released by early May. A 4 hour dvd packed full of all the tuning and maintenance tips that every Triumph and BSA owner needs to keep their bike on the road and keep from being embarrassed in front of a group of friends by having to kick their bike 17 times to get it started. From setting your valve clearances to installing and timing a Hunt Magneto to installing tapered roller neck bearings, it is 100% gearhead porn.

Portrait: NorCal Holly

Holly rides with a good crew out of NorCal and can be counted on to come back from trips with a big batch of solid photos. We're looking forward to seeing her and the Deathtraps at the BASH. Check some of her photo sets here: FLICKR LINK.

Recent shoot at JJ & Jen's Farm: LINK

Checkout her buddy Truckalope's leatherwork: LINK

Captian Sean of Throw Rag caught in the act at the Chop Meet.
And Jake on his two-wheeled chairlift later that afternoon. LINK

On the way to the 2008 EDR. LINK


Baby Steps

Got fork legs swapped over to the black dual disc sliders and mounted up with the new fork covers from West Eagle. That's about it so far on the FXR rehab. Time to get in gear.

Got an extra Ironhead flange sitting around left over from your Biltwell DIY Pipe Kit? It makes a pretty sweet fork seal installer.