Smooth Operator Softail

Ray’s clearly a guy who likes the job done right, and the quality of this bike is clear in its impeccable finish.

“IT’S A Harley-Davidson Softail; bought it with 400 kays on it; ex demo. Went to Meguiars Motorex and saw a couple of the customs there. I saw the bike in the paper, bought it, and I didn’t even take it home. I took it straight to Pacific H-D. Two days later and it was stripped; nothing left on the bike.

We raked the frame six degrees, put a 280 wide-arse kit on with a right-side-drive conversion and a Baker six-speed. They did all the custom fenders. It’s clean with no bolts. The swingarm took the factory axle covers. We tried to keep the Harley-Davidson look as much as we could.

They customised the oil tank and put the neck under the seat. They made the chain guard as one piece with the oil tank.

I bought a Pro-One front-end. I bought all the parts and supplied them to Pacific H-D: wheels, front-end, headlight, forward controls, and sprotor from HHI—I was told by everyone that the sprotor be shit because of the oil from the chain getting on the disc but it stops better than the stock bike.

I got Marc from Sydney Custom Spraypainting to paint it. He’s painted all my previous bikes. I designed the graphics and we did a standard Harley bar and shield, but in instead of ‘Harley-Davidson Motorcycles’ we did ‘Harley-Davidson Racing’. Then we did an American racing flag and chequered flag; and on the other side of the bike it’s the opposite. It’s House of Kolor candy apple red.

The engine was all done by Pacific H-D. We pulled the engine right down and didn’t have to replace anything because it was new. What we did do though was bore out the throttle bodies for the fuel injection. We bored out the heads, ported and polished them. We did an Andrews CW55 cam. It dyno’d 103 horsepower at the rear wheel. We’re running a Power Commander computer. We used the Screamin’ Eagle speedo and tacho combo.

We pulled the seat pole out and strengthened the frame to give it a cleaner look, and so you can see the custom work on the oil tank.

Bad Arse Trim did the seat which is straight black.

I didn’t wanna wreck the bike basically. There were that many features on it people wouldn’t know what to look at, so I went for a clean look.

We ordered 1.5 inch Burleigh Bars, 6 inch wider than standard, with internal throttle.

All the chrome was done in Newcastle.

Brakes are Performance Machine.

All switches are genuine H-D, chromed.

It’s got a hydraulic clutch off a 2007 V-Rod.

Redwalls were done by Redvan.

Early this year I bought a Harley-Davidson Fat Boy, stretched the tanks and painted it candy apple red. But I didn’t do the frame and engine. I finished it and it was the best looking thing I’d ever seen, and everyone commented on the bike. The only thing everyone kept saying was ‘Why didn’t you go a wide arse?’ But I’d ridden a friend’s bike with a wide tyre and it rode like a pig; wanted to go left all the time. That’s what turned me off the big wheel. But my mate Scotty knows how to set it up right, so I sold the Fat Boy for a good price and put it into this one. For a 280 it rides better than most 250’s I’ve ridden.

I’m gonna enjoy this bike—use it for weddings and cruising. But if I get the right money I’ll sell it. I enjoy building them, mate. It’s good fun.

This one was a nine-week-build. Everyone freaked out about how quick it was but Pacific H-D got stuck straight into it and got it done in good time.

I wanna thank Uncle John who’s the financier of the bike, cousin Ronnie who helped me source the parts, and thank my wife for putting up with another build! The Pacific H-D boys—unbelievable mate. They’re just gentleman. They’re just really down-to-earth. Sydney Custom’s Marc Houssenloge is just an absolute gentleman, and in my eyes, the best painter in Sydney. Also, Joe from Ultraclean is the guy who cleans my bike and he does a really good job.

words & pics by Wasko

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