Sturgis, SD (February 14, 2020) Few entities and people have stood the test of time and can rightfully be called legendary like those joining the Sturgis Buffalo Chip lineup today. The Buffalo Chip’s self-proclaimed house band, Lynyrd Skynyrd, is continuing a legendary tradition by finishing off their 40-plus year career with an ultimate send-off on the Wolfman Jack Stage on Sunday, Aug. 9. This is Skynyrd’s second stop at the Chip as part of their three-year “Farewell Tour.” In keeping with the theme, 36 of the world’s most celebrated motorcycle builders have accepted Michael Lichter’s invitation to create and display a motorcycle in the style of their choosing for the Sturgis Buffalo Chip’s 2020 Motorcycles as Art exhibit titled “Heavy Mettle: Motorcycles and Art with Moxie.” All invited builders have completed at least 20 custom builds and been in business for at least 20 years. The one-time exhibit will also feature photographs captured by Lichter over his 40 plus-year career. The exhibit is free and open to the public at the Sturgis Buffalo Chip Event Center from 2 p.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 8 through Friday, Aug. 14, 2020. Continue reading Lynyrd Skynyrd and the World’s Best Motorcycle Builders Join Legendary Sturgis Buffalo Chip® Lineup in 2020→
Paul Yaffe’s Through The Years Motorcycle Retrospective Big Hit at Arizona Bike Week
Phoenix, AZ (April 13, 2017) – A retrospective exhibit celebrating legendary custom motorcycle builder Paul Yaffe’s storied career was on display at the Legends Pavilion for the duration of Arizona Bike Week 2017. Sponsored by Chuck Franklin Law, Yaffe Through the Years showcased 19 of the most spectacular bikes that Paul has created during his 26 years in the bike building and custom parts business. Tens of thousands of people cycled through throughout the week, taking in photos and testimonies and witnessing firsthand and up close the beauty and power of Paul Yaffe’s metal masterpieces.
“It all started with a love of motorcycles and a curiosity and desire to see what could be made of them,” says Paul. “I never would have guessed, when I first started experimenting in the mid eighties, that it would have led to where we are today.”
An amazing collection of some of Paul’s most memorable custom creations was on display, featuring bikes from all around the country, including one of his take on an aluminum FXR from 1995. Nineteen motorcycles provided a visual representation of the evolution of Paul’s career, from choppers to baggers to pro-streets, including both Discovery bikes (Phantom and Suzy-Q), Whitey (the bike he gave his bride her first ride on) and the world-famous Prodigy.
A longtime Hamster, Paul also helped organize and participated in the Seventh Annual Hamster’s Charity “Dry Heat Run,” which drew over a thousand riders and raised over twenty thousand dollars for children’s charity. Beginning at Paul Yaffe’s Bagger Nation, the ride stretched for 60 miles, winding through some of the most beautiful desert terrain Arizona has to offer, and culminating at Arizona Bike Week for a concert with Creedence Clearwater Revisited.
But people were really taken with the Paul Yaffe Through The Years exhibit.
“We did a smaller event as part of my birthday celebration late last year,” says Paul. “But we expanded the concept, added about twice as many bikes, more photos, artwork and memorabilia. Plus, it was really special to hold the event here in Phoenix, where I opened my first shop so many years ago.”
That first shop was American Legend Motorcycle Co., which opened in 1991. Since then, Paul has enjoyed one of the most illustrious and influential careers in motorcycle designing and building. Today, Paul Yaffe’s Bagger Nation, together with Paul Yaffe Originals, is recognized as one of—if not the—preeminent custom bike building outfits.
About Paul Yaffe
Paul Yaffe has been designing and building custom motorcycles and motorcycle parts and accessories for over 30 years. In that time, he has won many awards, contests and honors, including three “World’s Most Beautiful Motorcycle” awards at the famous Oakland Roadster Show and two “Builder of the Year” and three “Trendsetter of the Year” honors from Easyriders Magazine. Paul opened his custom shop Paul Yaffe’s Bagger Nation (together with Paul Yaffe Originals) twenty-five years ago, and today his designs are recognized as being among the best and most sought after in the world. For Paul’s latest news, designs and appearances, follow him on Facebook, Twitter (@BaggerNation) and Instagram (@pybaggernation).
Story and photos by Becky Brown
Several years back I was in Phoenix for a meeting and my group was invited to a personal tour of the motorcycle museum located at Buddy Stubbs Harley-Davidson. The tour was given by Buddy Stubbs himself. The museum is the largest in the Southwest with over 130 bikes from around world but what really made an impression on me was Buddy Stubbs. The tour not only described the bikes and their history but some of the history of Buddy. I have since become friends with Buddy and I am never more amazed than learning of his accomplishments.
2016 will be the 50th anniversary of his Harley dealership in Arizona. Over those 50 years and more he has collected a long line of stories and experiences. I remember sitting at a casino bar in Las Vegas last year hearing about his times with Evel Knevil and Bud Ekins. We all know who Evel is but Bud was the stuntman who jumped the fence with a Triumph in the movie The Great Escape.
Buddy also was in the stuntman business for over 12 years. He taught Robert Blake how to ride for his role in Electraglide in Blue. Not only did he work on the set of that movie but he also did stunt work in two Bob Hope movies, several low budget “B” motorcycle movies and the TV series Then Came Bronson.
But that wasn’t enough to keep him busy. He started racing as an amateur in 1955 and went pro in 1961. He won the Daytona 100 in 1963 and the Windber 25 in 1963. He raced Harley, BSA and Triumph motorcycles. For many years he was one of the top AMA point racers and has kept his AMA membership since 1944. While he doesn’t race anymore he did ride in the Baja 500 held in Mexico in 2003. He does still ride off-road when he has the time and in 2010 he competed in the coast-to-coast Cannonball Run on his 1915 Excelsior.
Phoenix is lucky to have Buddy at the helm of his three locations including Anthem H-D. He is the major supporter of Arizona Bike Week and told me it’s his biggest week of the year. Every year for 11 years he has kicked off Arizona Bike Week at the end of March with The Buddy Stubbs Bike Bash at his dealership with 6,000 to 8,000 attending. But what really separates Buddy from the others is the money he has raised for charity over the years. Every year during Bike Week he sponsors The Wednesday Ride For Kids. All of the money raised each year goes to the children’s Camp Courage Burn Camp in Prescott. In the past 16 years he has raised over $800,000.00 for those kids with severe burns. Plus his work with Make A Wish has brought in over $500,000. And these are just two of the charities he is involved with.
Being the man Buddy is and all the activities he has been involved in over the years it is not a surprise that he has collected a few awards. He was honored by the California Trailblazers MC and given the Hero award at Arizona Bike Week in 2012. He has yet to be inducted into the AMA or Sturgis Hall of Fame but hopefully it will be coming soon. I don’t know of anyone more deserving. I know I have a good friend in Buddy and can’t wait until we sit for another 5 hours and swap stories over drinks.
The J&P Cycles Ultimate Builder Custom Bike Show rolled into Phoenix, AZ to blue skies and 80 degree weather. The Ultimate Builder is a feature of the International Motorcycle Show and positioned between the motorcycle manufacturers displays at the Westworld of Scottsdale facilities.
Each bike is positioned on a 12 foot oval carpet with a steel ring that encloses the bike. This allows enthusiasts to walk around the bike and get close to it without touching it.
Out in the parking lot enthusiasts were out taking test rides and catching the Jason Britton stunt show.
Custom bike fanatics were treated to an outstanding selection of bikes from established builders as well as up and comers. Big wheel baggers were the trend of the show with 7 builders showcasing their latest stuff.
A treat for many in attendance were the 2 Showcase Vincent motorcycles provided by Bob of Bob’s Cycle Supply. Great looking bikes that were admired throughout the event.
J&P Cycles Ultimate Builder Winner: FreeStyle Class
I spoke with Scott Moore about his Jim Nasi built bike and he was on the fence about entering the show. He was sure that his pro-street bike that features 60 degree rake, negative 3” in the backbone and 3-D wheels would not be enough to get him a “W” in the competition. Scott was wrong. The photo-realistic paint and round-cylinder mil really made the bike standout. He took home a $1,000 check.
1. #675 Scott Moore, Jim Nasi Build – Yes It’s Paint, 2013 Custom
2. #475 Lupe Aguavo, Panel King, ’08 Road King
J&P Cycles Ultimate Builder Winner: RETRO MOD Winner
The competition was close in all classes. A vote one way or another would have changed up the results in all classes. In Retro MOD we had to assemble a VIP judging panel as the top three bikes were all tied. After deliberations, Rick Nolan was selected for the win and he took home the $500 check for his Nickel Pan.
J&P Cycles Ultimate Builder Winner: MOD CUSTOM Winner
Scott Owens of Insane Asylum is a guy that custom guys and manufacturers go to for builds. He is equally adept at building SEMA cars as he is in building two wheel customs. With his winning 2011Honda Stateline build, you can see his auto pedigree from the way you can get to all the moving parts. With less than eight bolts and a few minutes, you can remove the gas tank and the entire rear section. sweet! It features paint by Gooby and custom bags and fairings.
1. #250 – Scott Owens, Insane Asylum – 2011Honda Stateline
The Show Dog award recipient from Phoenix was Tako. This award is presented to the individual that consistently works the crowd during the weekend to increase his or her business opportunities. The People’s Choice Award winner was Dave Del Maestro from Sideshow. His bike featured a Kraft Tech frame, Kiwi Indian leaf spring front end, S&S Knucklehead and port hole gas and oil tanks.
The J&P Ultimate Builder Custom Bike Show is installed in the International Motorcycle Show and is produced by Biker Pros. Each show utilizes peer to peer judging were the builders judge each other. If required, a VIP judging panel is assembled to address any voting issues. Go to www.motorcycle.com shows to enter your bike.
While the majority of the United States experienced extreme winter weather, the Phoenix edition of the J&P Cycles Ultimate Builder Custom Bike Show was treated to balmy mid-seventies temperatures.
The Ultimate Builder is known for the diversity of styles and Phoenix, AZ was a treat for enthusiasts checking out the show. It had everything including an Arlen Ness inspired 80’s era FXR, Radical Baggers and cool bobbers and choppers.
At each J&P Cycles Ultimate Builder show over $8,000+ in cash and prizes is spread over 5 classes with a grand total of $100,000+ awarded in the series. Each show begins on Friday and runs through Sunday.
Sam Baldi took 1st place in the FreeStyle class with Lost Angel and won the $2,500 check. Lost Angel is a custom 2013 build with an EVO Patrick Racing 113 mil softail with trans brake, centrifugal clutch and Paul Cox seat. Paint is by One Xtreme.
Sam Baldi – Lost Angel, 2013 Custom
Caren Cooper, Big Sky Motorcycle –Fire & Ice, 2012 Big Sky Bobber
Bill Nethercutt, Hatred Customs – Confused, 2008 HD Streetglide
Ultimate Builder MOD Harley Class
Joe Watts of Knucklehead Cycles finished is MOD Harley custom build just hours before the kick off of the Phoenix inaugural of the J&P Cycles Ultimate Builder Custom Bike Show. Was that effort rewarded? Oh Yeah, he took the point in the class and came home with the $1,500 check for his efforts.
Joe Watts, Knucklehead Cycles – Negra, 1986 Harley Softail
Shannon Venturo – Fatty Girl, 2014 HD Break Out
Jeff Five, Bob’s Cycle Supply – Apple Crate, 1988 FXR
Ultimate Builder Retro MOD Class
From show to show you never know how your custom bike will perform in the competition. Cherry Blossom fromHudson Motorycles took 2nd in Long Beach, CA earlier in the season but took the gold in Phoenix, AZ. It features a multi-cylinder Honda with ATP Turbo, S&S carb, ARD Magneto, RC Engineering exhaust and oil in the frame. Paint was applied by Love Ear Art.
Caren Cooper of Big Sky Motorcycle rolled in her 1997 Buell Mutant and you could tell by the looks of this blacked-out fireball that it was made for speed. It turns out that Miss Caren is a racer at hart and she drag raced this custom sled for many seasons. The bike features a pumped-up Buell mill in a rigid pro-street chassis from Redneck Eng.
Caren Cooper, Big Sky Motorcycle – Mutant Buell, 1997 Buell
Ultimate Builder MOD Street Class
Talking to Tom Garber you get the sense that he spent a considerable amount of time considering the platform for his custom build. His platform of choice? A 1999 Yamaha Road Star, which are plentiful and relatively inexpensive. He transformed the cruiser into a slick little bobber. Perfect!
Tom Garber – 1999 Yamaha Road Star
Hudson Motorcycles – BMW M Series Tribute, 2012 S1000RR