Custom Bikes of the Week: 29 November, 2015

The best custom motorcycles of the week
A radical Le Mans from Auto Fabrica, the most stylish Yamaha XT660r we’ve ever seen, and an Indian Scout ready to race down the Bonneville Salt Flats. It’s been a bumper week.

Auto Fabrica Type 9 custom Moto Guzzi
Auto Fabrica Type 9 The lads at Auto Fabrica, Bujar and Gaz, have built one of the most impressive resumés in the custom scene to date. They’re consistent in their execution of exacting design, regardless of whether they’re transforming a Yamaha XS650, accentuating a BMW R80 or creating one of the most stunning Moto Guzzi Le Mans I’ve seen to date.

It’s the tailpiece of Type 9 that draws my eye first. In an industry famed for its insistence on a rear loop, Auto Fabrica’s spoiler-type rear is a breath of fresh aesthetic air. It’s fabricated from 2mm aluminum that has been doubled, shaped and rolled. Underneath are aluminum fins flanking the taillight, mirroring the cooling fins on the 850cc engine.

The tank was fabricated in-house and shaped on an English wheel—the smooth curves play off the sweeping exhaust perfectly. The purposeful voids showcasing the engine hint at a ride that is both refined and aggressive. [More]

Speedtractor's Kraftwerks XJR
Speedtractor’s Kraftwerks XJR Matt Roberts and the Tokyo-based Speedtractor crew have been building bikes since 2010. At first the intent was purely selfish—they built bikes for themselves only. But this quickly led to crafting rides for family and friends, and by 2013, they were taking orders for a growing client list.

‘Kraftwerks XJR’ is a self-described ‘bruiser’ of a machine that highlights the burgeoning abilities of the workshop. The tank is a vintage Ducati unit pulled from a personal collection, and then reworked to fit the Yamaha’s frame perfectly.

It’s the herringbone-patterned seat and the top yoke that are the main design touches, though. The seat hugs the rear loop sublimely and the stitch pattern is exquisite. (It scores extra points for having some actual padding, too, which goes to show comfort and style can co-exist.) The top yoke is a bespoke unit, crafted from alloy to seamlessly house the Motoscope Pro cluster that mimics the tanks folds flawlessly. [More]

Ellaspede Yamaha XT660r
Ellaspede Yamaha XT660r Hulking machines that promise the ability to go everywhere dominate the adventure bike market. And many require a 4-man crew to get them righted if a rider missteps. A smaller, lighter model would be a superior choice for most would-be Charlie Boormans out there—like this fully kitted Yamaha XT660r, from Ellaspede of Brisbane, Australia.

The client directive was to create an urban adventure bike: a motorcycle that would look and perform on rides to cafes, as well as 2700km trips across the Nullarbor Plain. To that end Ellaspede set to work crafting the no-nonsense belly pan, radiator shroud, swingarm panels and headlight shroud. There’s also a larger capacity tank, to help connect distant dots. The front tire was changed down a couple of inches to a 19-inch hoop, to lower the stance and enhance commuter duties. But the TKC80s it rides on are ready for anything. [More]

DuongDoan's Design Suzuki GN250
DuongDoan’s Design Suzuki GN250 This tidy little scrambler comes to us from Hanoi, Vietnam. DuongDoan’s is putting together a solid string of builds with a signature, fat-tired style worth keeping an eye on.

A Suzuki GN250 is the base for this build, but the frame has been heavily modified to accommodate the custom air-box and 1-into-2 bespoke exhaust. The tiny 4-valve thumper remains a stressed member, and although a sump guard would be a good idea for serious scrambling, the proportions of this bike exude character and fun. The requisite beak, fat bars and beefy headlight shroud give a rugged appearance— accentuated even more by the stubby but plush seat and the chunky rubber.

The positioning of the pegs has me wondering if comfort is best in a seated or standing position, but I bet it would be a blast to find out. [More]

Indian Black Bullet Scout
Indian Black Bullet Scout The revived Indian Scout is by all accounts a phenomenal bike. It’s got a refined chassis, a competent 100hp V-Twin, and braking and suspension components that exceed expectations—a package that needs no improvement. But motorcycles aren’t always about ‘needs’ though, are they?

This Black Bullet Scout is the product of Jeb Scolman, the same craftsman that delivered The Spirit of Munro. It’s not a focused salt flat racer, but the Black Bullet looks like it’s moving at Mach III even when parked. The flowing lines of the headlight shroud continue beautifully through the stretched-teardrop tank and rigid rear end. Everything is hand made and every component is metal. The whole package would appear slippery were it not for that hulking, industrial 1,133cc powerplant in full display.

Indian will be showing Scolman’s Black Bullet at Sturgis in 2016, and they’ve said it will also get a run at Bonneville—which is exactly why Scolman built it with a rigid frame. In a word, it’s awesome. [More]