I’d dare say that’s exactly what you’re looking at here with this sharp white bagger built by Richie Kinmon of Bagger Barn in Shelby, North Carolina. Although this 2015 Harley-Davidson Street Glide’s got all the custom bells and whistles a showgoer looks for. It’s already won more than its fair share of awards, there’s nothing here that should stop an owner from not only going for a long ride, but taking a passenger too. Two-up on a show bike says street bike to me.
The first, very first, thing a builder has to keep in mind is do they really need a 30-incher to capture the judges’ attention. The answer is apparently “no” as this beauty wears a 23-incher proudly. A judge who can understand what Richie was up to might just lean his way a bit if they appreciate motorcycles as well as show bikes. If it was me and I was judging and saw a completely over-the-top show bike-only motorcycle versus a rad custom a few so-called rungs lower that you could ride like the machine it was originally intended to be, I’d go with the rad custom. Hey, maybe that’s why I never get asked to be a bike show judge.
Using a 23-inch front wheel means less has to be done to accommodate it and that’s a good thing. Usually this can all be done with a change of triple trees instead of frame mods. That change alone saves time, money and gives a distinct custom look that a rider can truly appreciate. No excessive rake and keeping things closer to stock dimensions only aids real world use and pleasure. Plus it looks a lot less cartoony not completely dominating the build for attention like a Ferris Wheel does an amusement park. Not that Ferris Wheel bikes aren’t cool, but like an amusement park ride, if you’ve seen one you’ve sorta seen ‘em all. Yep, it’s big.
Although the frame didn’t have to radically reworked at the neck area, it’s not the stocker you might think. Sitting straight up-and-down at rest is a hint as this baby’s been converted into a lay frame. Nope, not an electrical center stand, but an actual on-the-ground frame. That’s about as low as you can go without digging a hole under the engine cradle. Needless to say, air suspension front and rear has been involved. But, you can dramatically button-pop it up to a real nice ride height and go do some road time and with a passenger too. Custom cool and road worthiness working together, it’s a miracle of sorts.
When it’s time to hit the road the Twin Cam 103 has been treated to a visual as well as an aural Stage 1 setup. The stepped-header 2-into-1 Akrapovic exhaust has a look that’s trick as well as a stout sound that you could live with over the long haul. With a free-flowing air cleaner joining the party, there’s plenty of power for cruising around. Countering all the power is a single Performance Machine six-piston caliper does its fair share of the stopping grabbing a custom wheel-matching rotor. As usual, it’s anyone’s guess what’s going on under the all new rear section, but whatever it is, I’m sure it all works just fine.
New bags, new frame covers, new rear fender and a new removable Tour Pak thingie that’s already packed are prominent style points that come together as one. Very interestingly, Richie didn’t do the standard stretched-tank move and stayed with the stocker. It’s unexpected and it looks good right the way it is to me. The same can’t be said for the Heritage-style front fender that looks the biz while doing its job, fending off road crap or water. The bat wing fairing kinda looks the same until you realize it’s gotten a little battier with an extended headlight snout. Plus it accentuates the “What the . . . ?” look of the fairing resting on the front fender when the air suspensions have been de-pressurized.
One very cool thing Richie did was to add the swoopy lowers to an FLHX but I’m not sure whether it’s for wind protection of style or just to house those bumping speakers. No surprise either that there’s more speakers to bring the house down at shows with addition super high-quality units in the back of the fairing and, obviously, those wildly shaped saddlebag lids full of speakers. Notice there’s a voltage meter on the airfoil-style Tour Pak? That’s to indicate what’s going on inside that completely packed with electronics and beautifully wired interior. Back Yard Baggers gets our compliments for the well-done audio installation.
Of all the things he is at Bagger Barn as owner and builder, the thing he’s got the most time into is painting. He took an interesting turn here by not wanting to display killer painting skills, but to show case the eye he has for design. Using basically two colors and of all things, white and black, for his bagger statement, he refrained from diluting the bright white bodywork with graphics or even pinstriping. Nothing but the Harley logo on the tank gets between the landscape of white bodywork and black accenting by the engine bay, controls, and wheels. Oh, there is one little thing and that’s the white lettering on the front wheel spelling out Bagger Barn. It’s asymmetrically cool.
So what we’ve got here is a show winning bagger that has a look of its won and can be started up and ridden without too much difference from a stocker. There’d be no new learning curve like a giant 30- or 32- or even the just released 34-inch wheel might require. Hop on, load your passenger, crank the stereo and hit the road. You can’t ask more out of a one-off rad bagger can you?
For more info on Bagger Barn, you’ll have to find ‘em on Facebook.