BACK IN ’96 I bought a Fat Boy which I slowly but surely chopped until I had it the way I wanted it. This was before I got married and you know where the chopper went when the kids came along. We’ve all been there. Ten years later and she’d pissed off, got the house, kids, etc; and I’ve got the Child Support Agency payments.
For years I an itch to build another chopper, and when my friend Jammer said he’d help me build one at cost, I borrowed a few bucks and the project began.
I was now deep in cahoots with Jammer as we plotted and planned to build a chopper that could be ridden and entered in shows at the same time. Probably the hardest part was the fact that I was in Sydney and Jammer was in Brisbane; sometimes ideas were lost in the translation.
We started with a Fat Bastard kit bike from Ultima. This is basically a rolling chassis without a motor, gearbox and transmission and comes at a realistic price.
There’s nothing like a bit of grunt so we decided on a 127 inch El Bruto motor and Ultima transmission.
Jammer suggested several different arrangements for the tanks, seat and guards before I finally agreed to the current six-gallon stretched tank and hand-made rear guard; the seat was squeezed between the two.
The 250 rear tyre seems to handle okay and it certainly looks the part. I find Avon tyres give good grip and always worth the money.
The painting was handled by my good friend, Daniel Brushfire. The Egyptian idea came from my own tattoo work. Although I can appreciate it’s not everyone’s cup of tea; it’s a top design and I’ve not seen it on any other bikes.
The 21-inch front tyre and 16-inch rear Maltese Cross billet wheels may not match the Egyptian paintwork but I doubt if anybody would notice.
The rest of the chopper is all chrome from the brakes to the controls to the special headlight.
Upon completion the chopper was shipped to Sydney by All West Motorcycle Carriers.
The riding experience was something else—I had a smile from ear to ear! Sensational! However, I had a few problems that needed sorting.
Firstly, Jammer had fitted an open primary but when I tried to ride it, I had a problem with my leg. I’d been in a bike accident some years ago and my leg just wouldn’t bend around the open belt to the forward controls. Paul at Paradise Motorcycles came to my rescue and swapped the open primary for a closed chain set-up.
The second problem is not uncommon with choppers—it scrapped around every corner. After a discussion with Jammer, we decided to add another four inches to the folks with a five-degree rake through the triple trees. This only lifted the chopper a couple of inches in the front but it made all the difference getting around corners. Sure, it’s not a Buell, but it felt just right.
The chopper is now sorted and I’m out riding it as often as I can. Of course everything has a price—if you’re in the market for a flash chopper and have a spare $40,000, twist my arm. I am, after all, a salesman to my dying day.
pics by Jules @ Top Gun; words by Stephen Yardley