Barebones Sporty

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Since their launch in 1957 the Sportster model series has battled to step out of the shadow cast by the “Big Twin” models for which Harley Davidson is known. Big model Harley owners in the USA were derogatory about the launch of the baby brother, labelling the Sportster as a “ladies bike”. Unfortunately this label stuck and tarnished the reputation of the Sporty internationally for 50 years.
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The truth is that an 883cc or 1200cc motor in a heavy frame may be lighter than a Big Twin Harley but its size and performance is anything but ladylike. Sportsters have always provided the foundation upon which Harley  built their racing machines. US and certain international drag racing, tar and dirt circuit records are held by Sporty based machines, not Big Twins. Fortunately attitudes towards the Sportster can and are rightfully changing.
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Due to their more affordable price, a riding public far less influenced by traditional “biker” attitudes and Harley Davidson’s own intensified marketing campaign with some really exciting models, the Sportster is shaking off the unfounded stigma that has been attached to it for so many years.
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Today  Sportsters are the most modified and customised motorcycles in the world with endless quantities of aftermarket  accessories and performance parts available.
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Our friend Matt and his Sporty remind us of what this blog is about. He took his stock standard 2004 883cc  Sportster and in the discomfort of his own workshop created the fine rigid bobber which we feature here. Even more admirable is that Matt had never worked on a motorcycle before attempting this build. He did have some good friends and advisors in Ace (may he R.I.P) from Ace Custom Cycles, Jacques from Open Road Customs and Dieter who was working for himself at the time.
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2006 was the last year of the carburettor models and has the rubber mounted motor introduced in 2004. These are the toughest Sportys to chop because they have sensors everywhere for everything and thus plenty of wiring to hide. The pre 2004 bikes are far simpler to customise.
By | 2013-03-15T15:18:24+00:00 March 15th, 2013|Categories: Articles|1 Comment

One Comment

  1. ric 10th July 2016 at 2:34 pm

    Love it.

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