Bar Hopper

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Article By: GTP

Photos By: Melissa Shoemaker

Originally Published In The November 2018 Issue Of Cycle Source Magazine

Kerry Fernholz, General Manager for Iron Horse / Broken Spoke in Sturgis, has been in the been in the motorcycle game for a minute or two. When he found himself browsing the local cheap sheets he wasn’t necessarily looking for a bike and Scott Witherspoon wasn’t really selling the Triumph he was building either, he just put the add up on Craigslist to test the waters. When Kerry saw it, he was hooked and replied to the add convincing Scott that he needed to sell the bike to him…so he did. The bike in question is this ’65 Triumph Bonneville. This project started as a build Scott did for himself with the intention of selling it as an afterthought. He built the bike the way he wanted it and Kerry just happened to have the same tastes.

The factory ’65 Bonneville was stripped down to the frame where the modifi cation began. Starting with a bolt on hardtail from Factory Metal Works. All custom fabricated motor mounts and gussets. The factory neck gusset and rear motor mount were removed and replaced with formed tubing. A 71/72 front end with conical style hub was adapted to the 1965 frame and then powder coated. A ’66 Bonneville motor was installed and running strong without a rebuild. A set of Mikuni carbs now replaced the originals and a Joe Hunt magneto was used to keep things interesting. Scott fabricated the exhaust with ripple pipe and trumpet tips for a sanitary look and big bark.

The wheels are factory front and rear and were treated to powder coated rims with the hubs laced with stainless spokes. Stock brakes were used front and rear and provide ample stopping power on this lightweight bike. The tins, the tank and rear fender are Lowbrow Custom items slathered with trick paint and graphics by Flame Thrower Customs in Ohio. It was painted to keep the onlookers salivating and are what really caught Kerry’s eye and what more or less clinched the deal. A set of fabricated foot pegs were made to work with stock mounting location and peg rubbers. Polished stainless sissy bar and handlebars were made in house by Scott. Finally, a seat of unknown origin was sprung and now sits pretty on top.

According to Kerry, the bike was built right and built to ride. He has reported little to no problems with the little hard runner. It rides comfortable despite the hardtail and the noise from those trumpet pipes is loud but reportedly not annoying. is ridden, it’s not just some eye candy for some rich guys living room. Although Kerry says it isn’t the bike he’d choose to ride cross country but as far as bar hoppers goes, it fi ts the bill. Kerry has lost track of Scott since he bought the bike and luckily Scott did a bang-up job. So, if any of you happen to know Scott, let him know that his little Brit creation is alive and well and rollin’ around in North Dakota. It’s good to know that people still take pride in their work, even if they will never see it again. “GTP”



Owner: Kerry Fernholz

City/State: Fargo, ND

Builder: Scott Witherspoon

Year: 1965

Model: Bonneville T120

Value: Priceless

Time: Unknown


Year: 1966

Model: T120

Builder: Scott Witherspoon


Displacement: 1200cc

Pistons: Stock

Heads: Stock

Carb: Mikuni

Cam: Stock

Air Cleaner: S&S

Exhaust: Scott Witherspoon



Year: 1965

Make: Triumph



Year: 1965

Model: Triumph

Hardtail: Factory Metal Works



Builder: Triumph

Type: Stock

Triple Trees:



Front Wheel: Stock

Size: 19”

Front Brake: Stock

Rear Wheel: Stock

Size: 16”


Rear Brake: Stock


Painter: Flame Thrower Customs

Color: Black & Silver

Type: Base/Clear

Graphics: Flame Thrower Customs



Bars: Scott Witherspoon


Hand Controls:

Foot Controls: Scott Witherspoon

Gas Tank: Lowbrow Customs

Oil Tank:

Front Fender: None

Rear Fender: Flame Thrower Customs



Tail Light:

Speedo: None

photographer: Missi Shoemaker

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