Chop ‘Til You Drop Sportster

Written by  By Peter LaFrance Photos by Jack “Yes, I named my car, why?” Cofano Monday, 26 March 2018 12:00
Published in Sportsters
  Oh no! The world’s turning sideways again and I’m having one of those flashbacks they warned us about except this isn’t one of those remnants of Psilocybin flashbacks, but the real thing. I’m sitting in the back of a study hall doing anything but studying, actually I’m sketching away on yellow arithmetic paper as usual. I’m doing my best to draw a perfect circle followed by two more inside that. Hey, you can’t have a tire without a rim. I always start at the front and work back until I have what I consider the perfect rendition of a late 1960’s chopper as it’s actually the late 1960s.

I made a million of ‘em and somehow they basically all looked the same, but they were always like-the-first-time fresh and something to aspire to for me. Forks angled just so, Sporty tank sits just so, bars just so high (perfect for me), a tall sissy bar with varying designs depending on my mood, a you-gotta-catch-me loud exhaust, and a simple manly paintjob. You know, if I still had one of those #2 pencil scribbles, it’d sure look a hell of a lot like our feature bike from the fine lads at Chop Machine Motorcycles in lovely Toledo, Ohio, the home of the Jeep and Danny Thomas.     

    And, I’d have to say it’s not just me with my doodling as I’d dare say if you asked any kid or adult to try and scratch out a drawing of a chopper, it’d look just like this bike. Nothing wrong with that as classic, traditional, whatever you want to call it, is whatever it is for a damn good reason. When you’ve got a good design that’s hard to improve upon, like a Coke bottle for instance, why mess with it? Personally if traditional (I’m getting bored with the overuse and misplaced usage of the term Old School) choppers make you horny, why fight it Randy? Just go with it, but do it right. And, that’s exactly what Chop Machine did right down to the paint color.

    Like two other recent Chop Machine articles, one a flash and one a dark mash, we’ve done recently, this one is also a reasonable budget build and once again that’s a good, really good thing for most of us. Hey, if you’ve got tons of cash, spend it and tub it in my face, but that ain’t going to get me out of the low buck blues like this Sporty baby would.

Again, Chop Machine made a smart move using a Led Sled Customs rigid frame sans neck so they can weld in the donor 1999 Sportster’s VIN –laden neck for all the nit-picking paper-wielding bureaucrats of the world to be happy with. As far as they’re concerned, this cool ride is a Harley and that’s all they need to know.

    Once more, Chop Machine’s done a nice mechanical refreshing of the 1200cc Evo Sportster power plant and topped it of with really shiny pieces everywhere on the engine just because. Just because? Just because that’s the way it was done and that’s the way Chop Machine likes it and that’s good enough for me. A little black and chrome never hurt anybody and if it somehow did, I sure as hell don’t want to hear that sorry tale. Although, maybe I could use a good laugh so go ahead if you’ve got one. Paughco Up Sweeps pipes look like they arrived by time machine instead of a UPS truck for a perfect period look. So does the Mooneyes air cleaner. And the extended Sporty forks, Sporty tank, and Led Sled Customs fender and oil bag. Oh there’s a lot of styling clichés from the ‘60s, but that’s not a bad thing when you’re trying to channel the ‘60s. I guess you could say it makes perfect sense even if you were on a witness stand.

   Speaking of ‘60s styling clichés, there are two definite ones here I’d love to see more of and I’m sure you can guess at least one. First off, the towering sissy bar makes the bike in one swoop of curvaceous bent tubing and that was the easy one. Guess the other yet? Nope, not that . . . or that. It’s the ability to carry two people on one bike! Nobody who was anybody cool in the ‘60s (and ‘70s) would dare go for a ride without provision for carrying a gorgeous passenger they just might meet. Don’t believe me? Check out the Captain America and Billy Bike and tell me what you see. Nowadays, guys apparently just don’t met chicks anymore like they did in the ‘60s when it was okay to call them chicks. Back then, two up riding was where it was at and whenever I saw somebody riding two-up going the other way, wall I could think was, “Damn lucky bastard, I gotta get my shit together pronto.”

   Speaking of getting your shit together, check out the eBay auctions that just started for this bike and the other two feature bikes and maybe you can do a bit of trolling for yourself. If you blow those auctions, you can always give Chop Machine a call at 419-260-0067 for more info or check out their Facebook page for even more bike action.

1 comment

  • Comment Link Tuesday, 10 September 2013 posted by Justin

    I'm in love with this bike! Just curious whats the asking price? And do you have any others like it? Thank you for your time!

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