Tyler Malinky of Lowbrow Customs has a stellar reputation for building stylish old-school Triumph customs. He’s also one of the few people still around who can virtually engineer and build a bike from scratch.
This is one of those bikes, a twin-engined 1955 Triumph called Double Vision, which Malinky has just piloted to a land speed record at Bonneville. He built the 200 kph machine in his home garage using a Lincoln Electric Precision TIG 185 welder, a belt sander and a clapped-out 1950s Atlas Craftsman lathe.
“I’ve always admired the dual-engined Triumph drag bikes of the past,” says Malinky. “So late last fall I decided to build one.” Deep thinking ensued. Malinky completed the frame quickly, but then spent six months visualizing the drive train and the general build. After the vision snapped into focus, he set to work.
For ten weeks the Triumph consumed his life. “It pushed my fabrication and machining abilities to the limit,” he says. “I learned so much during this build. Many dual-engined bikes were built with very limited resources and equipment back in the day, so why couldn’t I do the same?” The raw materials were simple: a few lengths of tubing, some steel and aluminum sheet, and some scavenged swap meet crankcases.
Malinky raced Double Vision in the 1350 c.c. A-VF (special construction, pre-1955 fuel) class at Bonneville Speed Week, and lifted the record to just over 128mph. Despite being plagued by teething issues and clutch slip throughout the week, the bike he built with his own bare hands carried him into the record books.
Now that’s what you call ‘garage built’.