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KNTT: A sporty Knucklehead from Max Hazan

KNTT: A sporty S&S-powered Knucklehead from Max Hazan
We’d love a glimpse inside Max Hazan’s head. His machines are elegant and visceral, and we’re left wondering how he actually builds these functional sculptures. But what’s really mind blowing, is that he usually makes them up as he goes along.

The latest Hazan Motorworks creation has the lines of an Italian sportbike, classic race hoops, and a very special Knucklehead motor. It’s an astounding motorcycle, and extremely cohesive. But rather than emulate a particular style, Max started with a simple idea…and let his imagination run wild.

KNTT: A sporty S&S-powered Knucklehead from Max Hazan
“The idea came about after speaking to someone that loved Knucklehead and Vincent engines,” he tells us, “and me suggesting that I just make a Knuckle that ran two front cylinder heads.”

“I always had a sweet spot for the Harley-Davidson KRTT and XRTT race bikes, so I figured why not build one around a KN motor?” And so the ‘KNTT’ was conceived.

KNTT: A sporty S&S-powered Knucklehead from Max Hazan
Max took a 74ci Knucklehead from S&S Cycle, and then reworked it to run two front heads and two carbs. “It was not exactly a bolt-on modification,” he says wryly. The work put into the motor alone could fill volumes.

Some of the mods included cutting off and rebuilding the rear quarter of each head, and changing the angle of the intake runners.

KNTT: A sporty S&S-powered Knucklehead from Max Hazan
Adjusting the angle of the pushrods was a challenge too, and Max had to make his own lifter blocks, shorten and re-angle the rockers, and modify the actual knuckle part of the rocker assembly. He also ditched the generator in favor of a Morris magneto.

The carbs shown here are a twin Keihin CR setup, split and fitted with custom made flanges. They reportedly ran great—but with no accelerator pump, priming the motor was tricky. So Max eventually swapped them for a pair of Dell’Orto PHF36s.

KNTT: A sporty S&S-powered Knucklehead from Max Hazan
“The bike is kick only,” he says, “and it took a bit of learning to figure out what she likes. But the Knuckle runs like a (slow) top now. It’s a beautiful motor, but it only puts out around 50 hp.”

If you’re trying to figure out what frame Max wedged that alluring motor into, don’t bother. It’s a completely one-off chromoly affair, built from scratch.

KNTT: A sporty S&S-powered Knucklehead from Max Hazan
Up front are Royal Enfield forks that have been re-sprung and upgraded with Teflon bushings. The rear arrangement involves a custom aluminum swingarm, hooked up to a short Fox pitbike shock.

The Knucklehead has a killer stance, made even better by a pair of 18” Morris mags that were originally made for the Kawasaki Z1000. Max machined the original drum brake mounts off the Enfield forks, and fitted two Wilwood calipers on each side, with Z1000 rotors.

KNTT: A sporty S&S-powered Knucklehead from Max Hazan
The rear wheel only uses one Wilwood caliper, and a hand-made heel shifter on the left side operates it. It’s on the left because Max matched the motor to an old Indian Scout transmission with a right side shift. And it’s at the heel, because his homemade clutch actuator is right where a toe lever would be.

KNTT: A sporty S&S-powered Knucklehead from Max Hazan
Most of Max’s high-level engineering is fully on display, but some of it’s hiding under the exquisite aluminum bodywork. The oil tank sits just below the main fuel tank, and runs with a remote filter and cooler.

Max shaped everything himself—from the fairing through to the three-gallon tank, and the waspish tail section.

KNTT: A sporty S&S-powered Knucklehead from Max Hazan
There’s a high level of flow and harmony between the pieces. The contours in the tank and tail mimic each other, and the fairing has cutouts that run tight around various bits of the motor. All in all, the total package weighs around 375 lbs (170 kilos).

A pair of stainless steel exhaust headers make their way up to the tail, reminiscent of classic MotoGP systems. (Max built them with cut up Termignoni baffles in the ends, to dampen noise and provide a little low-end pressure.)

KNTT: A sporty S&S-powered Knucklehead from Max Hazan
Like all Hazan Motorworks builds, the KNTT is the product of an over-active imagination, backed up by a skilled pair of hands. And it’s loaded with enough quirky details to keep us busy until his next project drops.

Max might have had the XRTT and KRTT in mind when he started, but the end result is so much more than just a homage to two iconic American track bikes.

Hazan Motorworks | Facebook | Instagram | Images by Shaik Ridzwan

KNTT: A sporty S&S-powered Knucklehead from Max Hazan

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