MY NAME is Cathy and this is my story.
My Hubby brought me this Harley-Davidson Sportster for Valentine’s Day. I wanted a bike to do up and I needed to find one that I could hold up because I’ve been battling a sarcoma type of cancer and a bone disease that has made me very weak, and nerve damage on my left side. I’ve had lots of surgeries and treatments. I found that the early model Sportys were light so I could hold them up, but with only my hubby working, it was going to be hard buying one.
I found a 1994 Sportster Hugger on Facebook for sale and the guy let my hubby pay it off — we started stripping it down the next day.
The Sporty needed a lot of work and had to be lowered because I’m very short. Hubby stripped the motor down then painted the frame and motor.
I had another operation soon after so I took my Custom Chrome Parts Catalogue into the hospital with me.
Then I met the guys at Heavy Duty Motorcycles in Brisbane. They were so awesome and friendly, and I got a lot of parts and great advice off them.
Birds Bitz at Morayfield helped me out with a lot of parts as well. Bird and his wife are so lovely and friendly and helpful as well.
The guys at Gasoline Alley Harley-Davidson helped me as well with parts and advice.
I found Steve at Forbidden Art in Camira who said he would like to help me out by painting and airbrushing my bike. I picked the Phoenix because of what it represents.
My Hubby Steve and I went without a lot to be able to afford to buy and do up my bike. He took Vegemite sandwiches and an apple to work for six months and I had injections instead of tablets because it was cheaper. We didn’t go out anywhere, only on short motorbike rides as he has a ’92 Fat Boy Harley and I own a 400 Shadow.
We worked on the Sporty every night and every weekend for six months. I made a lot of new friends along the way and I can’t thank them enough for their help.
The Sporty is now an 883 with a 1200 kit in it with 2007 Softail front forks.
Finally it was time for me to have my first ever ride on my Sporty because I didn’t get to test ride when we went to look at it; the bike was too high for me. I rode it around my house-yard getting used to it and then I said I wanted to ride up the road. We have Bluetooth on our helmets so we could talk to each other, and I started crying.
“Why are you crying?” Hubby asked. “Don’t you like your bike?”
“I never thought I would ever get to ride it,” I said. “I’m so in love with my Sporty. I want to show my bike to let people know what you can achieve no matter what illness you have.”
I have won shows with the bike won People’s Choice at the Brisbane Street & Custom Bike Show. I could not believe it.
This is my dream and a new memory that we have made together. I’m leaving my Sporty to my grandson so he can see what his Nan has done and how special the Sporty is.