Building The Cycle Source Anniversary Bike
Article By: Paul Wideman – www.bareknucklechoppers.com
Photos By: Chris Callen
Fifteen years… quite an amount of time. It’s a whole lot of time when you are running a magazine in an industry such as the American motorcycle industry. Numerous magazines have come and gone in that time, many failed and were reborn, many bought and sold, and many have changed direction like the wind changes. But my good friend Chris has run his mag with his direction and love the entire time, marching to his own beat, and sometimes facing the world. In this time, he has faced many difficult decisions, including selling his beloved choppers. I have been down that same road, and I know how much it sucks. Chris was approached about doing an anniversary bike and a subsequent give-a-way this year at Big Mountain Run. A list of sponsors was drafted, and we luckily got the call to build the bike. I was honored, excited, humbled; all of the above. As we began talking about the direction the build would take, I got more excited, as the list of sponsors and donors was a dream list, and Chris was giving me full freedom to do what I like. Accurate Engineering, Baker Drivetrain, Robert Pradke, Evil Engineering, Ride Wright Wheels, Speedking Racing… Oh man, this is gonna be sweet. But our motor guy, Berry Wardlaw, of Accurate Engineering fame, had only one question for us: If this was Chris’s anniversary bike, why are we giving it away? So after a few discussions, we decided the best thing to do was build this bike for Chris and Cycle Source and let him ride the hell out of it for the next 15 years – and the 15 after that. It’ll be more work and a little more costly, but it’s the right thing to do for the guy that has done so damn much for all of us. So, over the next few months you can check back and see the progress on this chop. The intention is to have it done and road ready for the ride to Big Mountain Run in May. The general direction of the build is to keep the frame stockish looking, with a little up stretch. A hydraulic frontend, great brakes from Jeff at Speedking, ample gas and oil capacity, and a comfy riding position round out the broad build direction. The bike is going to be all business with general hot rod chopper duties in mind, as well as long distance riding. True, Chris may not ride coast-tocoast on it, but then again, Chris might ride coast-to-coast on it. The bike will be just as ready for it as Chris is. This month we will give a quick look at the frame build and a sneak peek at some of the bitchin’ goodies our friends have sent us.
We hooked up with John at Hardtail Choppers and got a set of his high quality cast stainless steel frame components. John’s parts are top notch.
We kept the rake at 30 degrees, but we added a little up stretch. How much you ask? Just enough.
Made in the USA!!!
Just to make things a little more difficult, we decided the wishbone version was in order. Very tricky to keep one dimension, but alter another when using stock castings.
Lemme and Darren, plotting and fabricating.
Working the bender.
Perfect fitment compliments of Lemme.
And here are the two pieces we have received prior to going to press: a fully polished Baker 6 into 4 and a killer Evil Engineering belt drive. There is a quick glimpse. While the frame is done and ready for mockup, we chose to hold back pics until the wheels, tires and frontend are here. The overall image will be much better. We’ll see you next month, and Happy Anniversary Chris. Thanks for everything.