Sorry, I know that’s a dreadful joke, but it is applicable; we haven’t seen a trick Buell for a good while now, but then, thanks to Nick Sadler at Retro Moto Engineering, two do indeed come along in as many issues. The first was the Buell Service XB.5 streetfighter last issue, and this time it’s the new Bottpower XR1 flat-tracker.
Bottpower is a small Spanish motorsport engineering company located in Valencia in Spain, who specialise in designing and building specialist bikes with twin-cylinder power-plants; BOTT is the acronym of ‘Battle of the Twins’ which, as I’m sure you know, is a racing category for four-stroke twins, and David Sánchez, the main man, has lots of experience both in mechanical design and bike racing, and built a very quick bike that was raced at the legendary US hill climb at Pikes Peak in 2017. He also translated Tony Foale’s legendary discourse ‘Motorcycle Handling & Chassis Design’, just about the bible for making motorbikes go round corners, into Spanish, too.
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I’M A SEMI-PRO SHED BUILDER, WHO BUILDS UNDER THE NAME DIRTY DICK’S… I SAY ‘SEMIPRO’ BECAUSE I’VE ONLY, AT THE TIME OF WRITING, SOLD TWO BIKES (AND, USUALLY, I GET PAID IN BEER FOR ANY OTHER WORK I DO).
I BOUGHT MY ENFIELD, A 2001 350 BULLET, IN SHROPSHIRE IN JUNE 2019, WITH JUST 11,000 MILES ON THE CLOCK. IT WAS IN TRIALS TRIM, BUT I ALREADY HAD IN MY HEAD WHAT I WANTED TO DO WITH IT – MAKE IT INTO A ‘50S-STYLE CUSTOM, BASED LOOSELY AROUND AN INDIAN SCOUT THAT I’D SEEN PICTURES OF.
OVER THE LAST YEAR OR SO, MANY OF US’VE HAD TO FOREGO THE JOY OF SEARCHING FOR PARTS AT AUTO-JUMBLES, SHOWS AND BREAKER’S YARDS, RELYING ON EITHER THE HIT-AND-MISS OF INTERNET AUCTION SITES, OR TURNING TO OUR OWN STOCK OF PARTS, WHEN LOOKING AT BUILDING OR MODIFYING A BIKE.
PEOPLE ALWAYS SAY CUSTOM BIKES’RE EXPENSIVE, THAT ONLY THE RICH CAN HAVE ‘EM, BUT IF YOU REALLY WANT ONE THERE’S ALWAYS A WAY…
LEAF IT OUT
THE SUZUKI LS650 IS PERHAPS BEST KNOWN FOR HAVING ONE OF THE LEAST SUITED AND MOST RANDOM MODEL NAMES IN MOTORCYCLING HISTORY – THE SAVAGE.
I DECIDED I NEEDED A BIKE FOR MYSELF AS A KEEPER (RATHER THAN THE USUAL BUILD IT, SELL IT, FUND THE NEXT ONE), BUT TIME AND FUNDS WERE GOING TO GET TIGHT. I WANTED A ‘60S/’70S-STYLE HARDTAIL WITH A DECENT-SIZED MOTOR, SINGLE OR TWIN, AND SOMETHING I DIDN’T HAVE TO DO ANY FRAME MODIFICATIONS TO.
SOME FOLK SAY WORK’S A NECESSARY EVIL, OTHERS MAKE THE MOST OF THEIR SITUATION. A GOOD FRIEND ONCE SAID TO ME THAT IT’S THE LITTLE VICTORIES THAT COUNT WHEN AT WORK, USING THEIR MACHINERY TO MAKE BIKE PARTS, BLAGGING FREE STATIONARY, OR JUST HAVING A POO ON THEIR TIME…
BACK TO THE EIGHTIES!
AFTER THE STYLISTIC EXCESSES OF THE 1970S, THE 1980S SAW A KIND OF DIRECTION CHANGE IN CUSTOM BIKE BUILDING – ONE WHICH RESULTED IN NO SMALL PART FROM THE ABUNDANCE OF FAST, RELIABLE FOUR-CYLINDER MOTORCYCLES FROM THE LAND OF THE RISING SUN.
MY GOAL WAS TO CREATE A CAFÉ RACER WITH STYLING FROM THE FIFTIES – ROUND CURVES THAT’D MAKE IT POP.
3 DIRT DIGGERS
OVER THE LAST FEW YEARS DIRT DIGGERS, HELD AT THE EDDIE WRIGHT SPEEDWAY STADIUM IN SCUNTHORPE, HAS BECOME THE NUMBER ONE, ALL-COMERS-WELCOME BIKE RACE IN THE UK.
THE WIND CRIES MARTY
Composer Sasha Matson talks to veteran reedist Marty Krystall about film music, studio work, recording, and working with musicians from Serkin to Zappa.
THE RESURRECTION SHUFFLE
We’ve all read features with similar titles to this one. Normally, any such write up (or ones that mention a phoenix or the phrases ‘risen from the ashes’ or even ‘back from the dead’), usually applies to someone creating something quite outstanding with a bike that was once written off, scrapped or otherwise suitably deemed defunct
The Missing Link?
Given the asymmetrical nature of motorcycle sidecar combinations, handling is always going to be a little interesting, and Mick Payne takes a closer look at how it can be improved.