About This Site
Vintage bikes take you away from the clutter of today's technology and back to a time of mechanical simplicity. If you enjoy reading about, working on, or just plain riding classic motorcycles, this site was written for you. Classic Motorcycle Build is the place to come for vintage and classic bike history and information.
Imagine riding down the road on your classic bike, knowing that nearly every piece was assembled by you. It warms your soul. There is no greater satisfaction than riding a motorcycle you built yourself.
Rely On Your Own Work
If you want your classic motorcycle build to be profitable, you have to do most, if not all of the work yourself. Shops may charge $60 to $90 per hour, and most have little or no experience with vintage and classic bikes. Classic motorcycle builders go deeper into their projects than a car guy will, if for no other reason than because they have to. They don't have the resources a car guy will have.
I've been riding and wrenching for 40+ years, and in that time I've brought home numerous disassembled and basket-case motorcycles. Because of this, two things have happened - I have become quite familiar with old iron, and I have pushed the limit of my patience far beyond what I thought it was.
My first motorcycle was a 1972 Harley-Davidson Sportster, which I bought wrecked in 1981. It was the only way I could afford the bike I wanted, but six months and $500 later, I was riding.
I've owned and enjoyed many different types of bikes, and have commuted many years on motorcycles. In 1983, I bought a Yamaha Seca Turbo to be my daily rider while I was building my Hardtail Sportster. As you can see from the picture below, it got me through all kinds of weather.
From 2005 to 2010, I rode a Harley-Davidson Road King. I was working at a Harley-Davidson dealer which was in the county below mine. It was a 35-mile each-way commute, and the King was a good ride. After riding it for five years, I decided cruisers weren't for me and sold it.
In 2010, I was looking for another bike, but without having the money to buy a complete running motorcycle of any quality, my only choice was to find a good project bike. I bought a disassembled 1976 Sportster and then spent two years getting it together and running. I rode it for two years after that before selling it in 2014.
Interest in original Harley-Davidson three-wheelers has been steadily increasing through the years. I found this project trike on ebay. When completed, this 1961 Harley Servi-car will be a fun collectable classic to be driven in parades and running errands around town. What's more nostalgic than a flathead-powered three-wheeler?
Ride Safe And Live
Back when I was in my early twenties, I could care less about motorcycle safety. What changed that was an accident that a friend of mine was in. His name was Palmer, and he was an experienced motorcyclist. He didn't own a car and he rode all year round. Today we call them bad weather bikers.
Palmer was an older and more experienced rider than I was, but that didn't help the day an old woman pulled out in front of him. She claimed she didn't see him. His helmet probably saved his life.
He was still unconscious when they got him to the hospital. When he finally came to, they told him he may never walk again. Little did they know how stubborn he was. Well, he's still alive and well, and walks with a bad limp, but was never able to ride a motorcycle again. The day after Palmer's accident, I stopped wearing my $20 helmet and bought a real one. A quality proper fitting helmet is the most necessary piece of motorcycle safety gear.