I love it when a killer bike comes through from a builder I’ve never heard of. This stunning 1969 Triumph TR6 custom is the work of Raccia Motorcycles, a low-key outfit based in a century-old bottling factory just north of Los Angeles. The lines and stance are simply perfect, and if you’ve ever tried to build a custom bike, you’ll know how difficult that can be. The builder of this machine is Mike LaFountain, and his philosophy is simple: “I’m always trying to change proportions and form new lines to create a unique look, which stems from my love of vintage GP race bikes.”
Mike upgraded the motor with a Morgo 750 kit, which now breathes through a dual manifold for even more power. After relocating the battery and electrics for a tidier look, Mike crafted a new oil tank, seat unit and rearsets out of aluminum. “Never was a big fan of fiberglass,” he says. The tank is from a Kawasaki KZ1000R, but heavily modified. “The original lines are a bit 80s, so it took time to reshape the tank to create a softer, more 60s feel. A purist would probably think it’s blasphemy to put a Japanese tank on a British bike, but I haven’t had any complaints yet!”
The frame has also been modified, to drop as much weight as possible. “One of the hardest parts of the build was coming to terms with hacking up a perfectly good Triumph frame,” Mike admits. But his judgment was justified by a win at last November’s Hansen Dam British Bike Ride and Show, the annual showcase of the southern California motorcycle scene. I have a feeling we’ll be hearing more from Raccia Motorcycles in the future.