Christmas came early for me this year in the form of this custom Honda Shadow 750 C2. A gift, not from Santa but from two of my besties Billy and Silvie from Rogue Motorcycles in Perth WA. Now, if you suddenly get an inkling to head over to Rogue and befriend these two wonderful people don't let me dissuade you: But gifting motorcycles is not a benevolent pastime of theirs. In truth, I have been working with them over the past year to help build their business into one of Perth's most notable custom motorcycle destinations and I'm proud to say we've nailed it. In return I was awarded one of the most fun bikes I have ever owned or ridden. I give you Outlander.
When Billy first introduced us, the bike was a pretty stock standard 2008 Honda Shadow albeit with Vance and Hines pipes and some chimp hanging bars. It was also sporting more than a few scratches and bruises from her previous abusive relationship.
I have always been unexplainably attracted to bobber styled bikes so Billy and I agreed that this bike was going to go lean to get mean.
The first step was to remove the pipes and tank which both had road rash and ditch dimples when the former owner went left as the bike went right. The Vance and Hines twin sports exhausts were persuaded back into shape with minimal violence and given a black power coat to hide the sin. The tank was also re-shaped.
Meanwhile Billy, a master fabricator trained in Belgium by his late father, took a hot stick to the back end of the bike. The definitive Shadow tail was discarded behind the rear shock struts. Exposed frame was capped and in place of the seat mounts Billy cut and welded a cover plate to hide the battery wiring.
The seat is a Bitlwell Solo Seat custom kit supported by brass springs. Yes I know I still have the rear shocks attached. Bobber cool. Hardtail bad.
Having a dubious penchant for leather and stuff I knew that I needed something special for the seat. Early on we decided we wanted to add running boards to the bike because.... (fuck knows?..) So when we finally took a bag of bits to Andrew DeBono from Beyond Trim, I wasn't even certain what was coming back. I was, however, pleasantly surprised.
Andrew covered the seat with genuine leather in a diamond quilted style. The mood was matched with the tank bib, expertly fitted to the underside of the instrument panel by the maestro himself. But the Da Vinci of the Seville Grove had barely broken a sweat. He toiled and tooled his way to legend with his work on the running boards and the gear lever. To say I was impressed would be an understatement.
By now the pieces were arriving from the four corners of Perth like wise men and shepherds to the manger that was Rogue... (That was a tacky Christmas reference which I shall not continue with.)
As we (read Billy) assembled the pieces I saw the fitted lighting which is some serious moto gadget tech with the tail's running, brake and indicator functions built into one unit. Pretty nifty.
Check out the matching headlamp too. Very nautical, very brassy, very Jack Stillman. All of these parts are available through Rogue Motorcycles.
Somewhat of a specialist in the fabrication and supply of fenders, check out Billy's tidy work on this piece.
Another notable mention are these crazy solid brass grips. As ostentatious at they are, they work well to bring the other brass pieces of the bike together I think.
Black. Black was the colour of choice after months of colour quibbling. An unimaginative move I hear you whine but after all it was the best choice we thought to bring out some of the accents of the leather and brass. It's the colour for now but maybe not forever.
See those pipes? I wrapped them! See that burn mark on the pipes? Also me.
All in all she has proven to be one of the best bikes I've ever owned. She's fast (enough), stylish, adequately noisy and super easy to ride. Future enhancements may include the return of the chimps or even some apes, white wall tyres and maybe some more colour on the shiny bits? What do you think?