Yamaha V Star 650

2001 Yamaha V Star 650 Classic custom motorcycle
What do you do if you’re saddled with a small metric cruiser you don’t particularly want? Sky Fleming, a reader from Utah, found himself in this situation recently. He got a Yamaha V Star 650 in trade for an ATV, and instantly developed a dislike for his new acquisition. “I ripped into the bike that night. It lost about 60 pounds of chrome,” he says. Sky cut the shiny covers off the aftermarket pipes, revealing the (much cooler) raw steel underneath. He dismantled the front end, repainted it, and moved the forks up in the trees to lower it. Then he relocated the rear shock mount to drop the back end too. The sides of the tank were dished using ball peen hammers, smooth enough to to be repainted without filler. It’s now matt black with almond in the dished section, plus subtle gold leaf to add highlight details. A friend hammered the seat out of aluminium, and Sky himself beat a salvage yard fender until it fit snugly with the back tire. The result is slick, but the transformation of this V Star was quick: “Me and my friend have about 30 hours each in it,” Sky reckons, “minus the paint dry time.” Just goes to show what you can do with the humblest of raw materials. [More on the current V Star 650 on the Star Motorcycles site.]

  • Francois

    I just threw up little in my mouth.

  • Sky

    I threw up in my mouth a lot when I first traded for this bike. If you want to see more pictures you can go here:

  • Ken

    What in the world – Why do this

  • Jaxom

    Good lord that is an awesome bike! Beats the pants off the V-Star it was born as.

  • Woody

    A lot of readers scoff at cruisers, but this is a nice step up from the stock v-star. I think drag bars would wrap it up nicely.

  • This thing is a bobber in the true sense of the word. Take a cheap bike, make
    it a lot leaner and meaner. I’ll bet he’s not kidding(too much) about those 60lbs. of chrome. And I WOULD like to know more details about his rear shock treatment…

  • Just looked at the bigger pics of Sky’s site.
    About the bike all i can say is “The Dude’s got ‘tude”

  • The_Scrote_From_Lanzarote

    Totally awesome treatment. Beat the sucker with the tough love hammer till it’s all lovely.

  • Tin Man 2

    Big improvement on a stock Star(yamaha). To hammer that fat tank and need no filler takes some real talent! This is Garage building at its best. Take a Low Value MotorCycle and make it into something you want!!

  • kim scholer

    If any bike on this blog shows what the true bobber spirit is like, it’s this one. Sky did the (only) sensible thing to that little Harley wannabe, and ended up with the perfect modern bobber. It is cheap to buy and run, and there was no expensive expert shop time required. And it probably is as reliable as any other Jap bike.

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