IF THERE’S one thing a bike owner with dreams loves to hear, it’s a personal recommendation about who can bring those dreams to reality. Joe Pega had done some fairly extensive work Greg’s Fat Boy, and the all important personal recommendation had Greg’s mate, Biza, see him about a paint job for his helmet.
“Joe got my helmet sprayed up, got my kids’ names on both sides and did some graphics for me,” said Biza. “That turned out really good so I could imagine how the bike would be. Joe looked at my bike and I looked at my mate’s bike and we kind of said, “Okay, let’s get something happening here.”
That first step led to what Pega breezily calls, “A few tinkery bits on the bike.” Then, “From a few little tinkery bits it turned into a front-end, headlight, handlebars, grips, mirrors, forward controls, and I said, ‘How about we do a Gothic scene on the bike, and black and silver wheels? Don’t be scared’.”
Paint schemes can be the most personal part of the bike for a lot of owners; an opportunity for self expression, a way to announce your allegiance or just a chance to tell the world what you like. They can represent something you hold intrinsically important, or just reflect a theme that seems to suit the shape of the bike or the mood you’re in when you ride it. The possibilities are as endless as the imagination.
Having entrusted the customising work to Pega, Biza largely left the details of the paint to him as well. “He gave us a rough idea of what he wanted. It went from a plain paint job to fancy goblins and demons.”
Black, spiked pegs were a natural accompaniment to the paintwork, and a chopped rear guard with a widening insert, all done in-house, adds to the sense of stability and solidity.
“Con from CKT did the seat; he’s making another one for it now, something a bit more Gothic so Biza’s got one for when he goes on a long trip and one for when he puts the bike in a show.
“We did a lot of chrome work on it,” Pega says. “Lowered it, put forward controls and an Arlen Ness headlight on it, made up a front guard for it.
“Got the wheels from RC, the front end’s an Ultima, the grips come from Hammer. I got a few things powder-coated on it. The shifter rod was homemade; the front guard was done in-house. Danny from McCullum Engineering made the spacers on the front guard. It’s got a few Arlen Ness bits and pieces; it’s got a fair bit of Kuryakyn chrome things; it’s got all braided clutch and accelerator lines. The pipes are Vance & Hines. We put Metzeler tyres on it, and it’s got HHI calipers. Nigel Green does all my brake lines.”
A shopping list of impressive components doesn’t necessarily equal a motorcycle that’s actually useable. Each individual component needs to mate with the others in a functional sense and in a visually coherent sense, and this is where people like Joe Pega excel with an enviable combination of knowledge and imagination.
Biza had only had his bike back from Pega for a few weeks when the photos were taken, and despite having bought it six months previously, in a way, it was like having another new bike.
“It’s totally different to what it was before, totally different. I’ve now got forward controls. Before it was more like a lazy bike, now I’m taking more control of it. It’s a bit longer in the front-end, but other than that, a bike’s a bike and you’ve got to get used to it on the first few rides.
“Any more changes? I guess I’ll probably leave that up to Joe. He’ll keep telling me what looks good on the bike and I’ll just go with the flow because Joe pretty much did that and I trusted his judgement so I’ll let him do what he’s got to do to it. So, definitely, more changes to come, I’d say.
“I get out there all the time. I don’t really like to ride in the wet but when I got the bike from Peter Stevens in Ringwood, I probably clocked up 3000 km within about two months so I get out as much as I can. My business partner’s got a Harley-Davidson as well, so we get out there together and we pretty much get on it.”
We’re not big on moralising here at Ozbike, but there is a moral to this story. Listen to other people when they recommend somebody through their own experience, and then you can confidently expect to end up as happy with your bike as Biza is with his.
Words & pics by Chris Randells