The modern-day Royal Enfield has many charms. But a rumbling exhaust note is not one of them. And nor is the ability to smoke rubber, however gently.
Ohio-based Aniket Vardhan has found a solution to this problem. There’s no substitute for cubic inches, so he’s mated two 500cc Enfield motors together to create the Musket V-Twin. It’s an extraordinary engineering achievement, and Vardhan now has a solid backlog of enquiries from potential purchasers.
The story begins when Vardhan left his hometown of Delhi, India, in 1999—partly to take a Masters in Industrial Design, and partly to live closer to the sound of Harley-Davidson V-twins. As the years passed and he took up a teaching post, he developed his Enfield V-twin concept, first as a 700cc model and then as a 998.
Vardhan describes the Musket as “a slightly ridiculous venture.” But in reality, there’s nothing ridiculous about it. Vardhan is far from your typical amateur engineer—aside from designing and blueprinting the engine, he also oversees the sand-casting of the crankcases, the machining, the assembling of all the custom parts, and even the final polishing and fitting.
More importantly, he hasn’t messed with the tried-and-test Enfield internals. Even the tappets are stock, so that vintage bike nuts can adjust them at will. The 59-degree twin is as simple and strong as the Bullet 500 single built in the Chennai, India factory.
The result is well beyond a factory level of finish, as you can see from our exclusive images. Just check the copper oil lines and the beautifully assembled exhaust system. The modified frame is also in keeping with the vintage style, retaining the classic single down-tube. Stop by a Musket 998 in the street, and you’d think it was an ‘official’ model.
Vardhan tells the full story on the Musket V-twin website. It’s inspiring stuff, and well worth a read.