Chill ‘Em All: This motorized BMX is inspired by the Raleigh Chopper

Chiller motorized BMX
The perennial question facing all major motorcycle manufacturers is how to get young people into motorcycling. With the old-school biker class slowly aging out, nabbing the next generation is crucial—and everyone is scrambling for the answer.

As for us, we’re putting money on crossover concepts like ‘Chiller,’ a bespoke BMX-inspired bike powered by either a pit bike engine or an electric motor, depending on your preference. But don’t take our word for it; the creators of Chiller are already winning hearts and minds. They revealed the first Chiller prototype 18 months ago, and have continued to build, refine, improve, and market the concept, with no signs of slowing down.

Chiller motorized BMX
The outfit behind Chiller is called ChillFab, an offshoot of the top scooter customization shop Butcher Garage. They’re a hardy bunch too—since they started working on Chiller, they’ve lost a founding member and relocated their entire operation from Saint Petersburg to Belgrade, Serbia. But the team of Alex Mazan, Arseniy Chekar, and Vlad Zaki are looking forward.

They’ve also just opened pre-orders for a small production run of the electric Chiller, which they say is easier to get through most countries’ regulations due to how pedal-assist two-wheelers are classified. But the gasoline-powered Chiller concept is alive and well—as evidenced by this bodacious rainbow-drenched whip.

Chiller motorized BMX
ChillFab builds petrol Chillers exclusively on commission, honing the design each time in nearly imperceptible ways. “The changes are almost invisible to the average person,” explains Arseniy, “bus so important to professionals.”

“It should be noted that for all its visual simplicity, the project is a real challenge for us. Every fastener, every element, and every pipe bend requires special attention. Everything is visible, so a lot of work is required to create a really clean build.”

Chiller motorized BMX
This particular Chiller uses the same Raleigh Chopper-inspired geometry as the bikes that preceded it, but its custom-made aluminum frame sports myriad improvements. Most of the work went into improving the frame joints, but the team also revised the chain tensioner, rear brake caliper mounts, seat fastening system, engine brackets, foot peg brackets, and exhaust.

Earlier Chillers ran with rigid forks up front, which, combined with the rigid rear, made for a harsh ride. Bowing to pressure from customers, ChillFab designed and fabricated their own stainless steel springer fork. It not only adds some compliance to the bike but also looks fabulous.

Chiller motorized BMX
At the top of the springer setup, a custom-made stem connects the forks to a set of BMX cruiser handlebars from Electra Bicycle Company. The bars wear a Tomesalli throttle and grips, a clutch lever on the left, and a brake lever on the right that actuates the bike’s only brake; a four-piston Ottopuntouno caliper mounted out back.

Chiller rolls on 21” dirt bike wheels, shod with Shinko chopper bicycle tires. “We used the parameters of Honda’s youth motocross bikes, from the wheel size to the wheelbase, resulting in amazing balance and control,” says Arseniy.

Chiller motorized BMX
A banana-esque seat sits up top, just above an aluminum fuel tank. It’s an updated design from ChillFab, with more capacity than before and a filler cap that extends past the back of the seat for ease of access. The redesigned reservoir carries 2.4 liters [0.63 gallons] of fuel—enough for urban shenanigans.

The 125 cc four-stroke motor comes from a Kayo pit bike. It’s mostly stock, save for the pod filter intake and the handmade stainless steel exhaust system.

Chiller motorized BMX
This Chiller is finished off with a titanium nitride coating and a set of anodized mountain bike pedals. But ChillFab has more custom options planned for future editions. They’re developing a steel version of their signature frame with bronze-brazed joints, inspired by high-end handmade bicycles. And they’re busy sourcing a suitable 90 cc, semi-automatic motor for even more ease of use.

In the meantime, they’re enjoying the overwhelmingly positive responses that their electric- and petrol-powered Chillers elicit. Arseniy recalls how they were running demos near a hair salon when the hairdresser, who had never ridden a motorcycle before, came outside to see what all the fuss was about. Within minutes, she was railing corners like a seasoned rider.

Chiller motorized BMX
“We have conducted a huge number of test rides with friends, acquaintances, and people simply interested in the project. It’s always pleasant to see how even the most skeptical motorcyclists break into a smile after the first lap on our improvised training ground. One Chiller owner, who could not resist its charms after a test drive, even holds multiple speedway championships.”

Aside from the obvious nostalgic value of Chiller, we’re on board with anything that gets more butts on bikes. ChillFab ships internationally too, which leaves just one question; where do we sign?

ChillFab Instagram | Images by Alexander Dymov

Chiller motorized BMX