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Kuzuri: A Harley XL1200 Sportster custom from Thrive

Harley XL1200 custom by Thrive Motorcycle of Jakarta
If there’s a rising force in the modern custom world, it’s Indonesia. It’s no longer surprising to see a world-class middleweight café racer roll out of a Jakarta workshop, and the top shops are now spreading their wings and tackling the heavy metal.

One of those shops is Thrive Motorcycle, with a sweet succession of Yamaha and Royal Enfield builds to their name. They’re often pushing the design envelope into angular new directions rarely seen before.

Harley XL1200 custom by Thrive Motorcycle of Jakarta
It’s still a surprise to see the chopper influence in this latest build, even though it retains the super-clean lines and finishing we expect from ace fabricators Indra Pratama and Barata Dwiputra.

“The project kicked off over two years ago,” says Thrive’s Putra Agung. “One of our good friends, Reuben, asked if we had a Harley engine available for a new build—and by coincidence, we did.”

Harley XL1200 custom by Thrive Motorcycles of Jakarta
The engine in question was from a year 2000 Harley XL1200 Sportster, and part of an order direct from the USA. The Evo motor was in rude health, and suited Reuben’s desire for a reliable, modern drivetrain.

Thrive has a custom parts division called T/H/R/V, so the V-twin became the test bed for a whole range of new parts—mostly primary, cam, sprocket and rocker covers, plus a new air filter.

Harley XL1200 custom by Thrive Motorcycle of Jakarta
“We fitted some to the bike, and then made a few more custom parts to stretch the design as far as we could.”

“We’ve planned to build a chopper since the day the Harley engines arrived,” says Putra. “And Reuben is a chopper enthusiast. He’s also a person who loves to see where new ideas might lead.”

Harley XL1200 custom by Thrive Motorcycle of Jakarta
“We visited a couple of workshops in Japan and saw a lot of great bikes at the Yokohama show—especially the ‘traditional Japanese’ chopper.” The XL1200 is now called Kuzuri, which translates to ‘wolverine’ in Japanese.

A custom rigid frame was ordered from metallurgical wizard Andi at Brodonolo Custom Garage, an eight-hour drive away in Central Java. As soon as it was finished, Thrive starting measuring and shaping aluminum sheet.

Harley XL1200 custom by Thrive Motorcycle of Jakarta
Over several months, the Thrive crew fabricated the new bodywork in-house. That meant building a gas tank, the sleek tail unit (which does double duty as a fender), the oil tank, the electrical box, and the headlight surround.

“We aimed for a design that could be timeless,” says Putra. “The looks and details are streamlined, to present an image of sleekness and cleanliness.”

Harley XL1200 custom by Thrive Motorcycle of Jakarta
Thrive’s own custom parts are everywhere, right down to the breather system and exhaust shield.

On went mini gullwing-style bars, homemade switchgear and footpegs. There’s a throttle unit with cabling running through the bars, and Mooneyes grips. And yes, there’s only one lever on those bars—the front hub is brakeless. This is one Harley that will need to be ridden with care on Jakarta’s busy roads…

Harley XL1200 custom by Thrive Motorcycle of Jakarta
“We also chopped the forks to get the stance we’re looking for,” says Putra. “New shrouds add to the slim and sleek look.”

There’s an Avon Speedmaster on a 21” wheel at the front, with a classic ribbed Firestone on an 18” rim at the back. A modified Softail rear brake setup (hopefully) hauls the bike to a stop.

Harley XL1200 custom by Thrive Motorcycle of Jakarta
Power hits the back wheel via a chain conversion, and there’s a neat custom chain tensioner made from a skateboard wheel.

The neatest touch is perhaps the taillight hidden under the rear fender; the rear turn signals are hidden inside the rear frame. The level of craftsmanship throughout is astounding.

Harley XL1200 custom by Thrive Motorcycle of Jakarta
When it was time to hit the finishing bay, the guys wanted to accentuate a sensation of speed—and create a feeling of the XL1200 “streaking through space.”

After a few sessions of vapor blasting for the raw metal, the engine was powder coated black and the bodywork sprayed in a delicious mix of Sapphire Blue and silver.

Harley XL1200 custom by Thrive Motorcycle of Jakarta
We’d never call ourselves experts on the chopper scene, but even we can see that this XL1200 is something out of the ordinary.

We reckon it’s time that the Thrive crew took another trip to the Yokohama show, this time with the Sportster in tow. They might just return home with a little extra something in their luggage.

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Harley XL1200 custom by Thrive Motorcycle of Jakarta