We got to see an amazing build-off last night. Trevelen, Kieno, Paul Cox and their crews were magnificent!! The craftsmanship and customization of these motorcycles was second to none. Hugh King has done a great job showing us more of the build and less extraneous filler. The two episodes this year have made me feel like I was right there. The fabrication and workmanship were featured and the “fluff” was absent. I have learned more from these first two build-offs than most before them. I believe the reason for this is that the focus of the show has changed.
Trevelen built an incredible motorcycle. He built it out of copper, silver, iron and nickel. I love when someone builds a motorcycle from copper. The look is rich and classy. Trevelen used a springer front end. He based the bike on the old Indian. He used an 84 cu inch flathead engine. The copper fender was hand finished. I loved the copper bike the great Jesse James built for Motorcycle Mania 3 and I loved the look of this bike as well. Trevelen had some problems with the paint and the wrong size sprocket. The sprocket problem almost ruined him but, they were able to fix it.
Paul Cox and Kieno also built a masterpiece. Keino built a unique panhead, knucklehead power plant. It was really creative and a testimonial to his skill. They decided to make an aluminum gas tank and employ a girder front end. They had the help of John Mack, master machinist. There were a lot of custom parts fabricated. It was amazing that they could build this bike in 10 days.
A friend of theirs flew in from Japan with hand made pushrod covers which were beautiful. He then proceeded to fabricate a hand made jockey shift nob which was very cool. There was a lot of etching done and this was indeed a work of art. Legacy seems to build their bikes in the tradition of their namesake. No one of course can be Larry but Paul and Keino were Larry’s key guys and they haven’t dropped the ball. This was a beautiful blue machine.
The guys met out in the desert to begin their ride. I have one problem with what happened. I think it’s great that these men who toil over their work also maintain class that permeates the real biker world. Trevelen ran into trouble on the ride and could not continue. He had to take it in for repairs or he was done. Paul and Keino had the right to disqualify him but, of course, they did not. I love the brotherhood they displayed. It makes me proud. The rules state however, that you have a few tools you carry and if you can’t fix a problem with those tools, you lose!! I realize that what Keino and Paul did is good for the show and what all brothers would do but, why have rules if they don’t mean anything? They actually changed the rules last year to just a few tools to enhance the integrity of the show.
The show is also sharing more about the builders as people. I think that’s a very positive change. We got to learn about Trevelen’s rocky past and we got to meet Paul’s wife and baby. We try and do that here with our podcast interviews. These are not just magnificent artists, they are people with lives and a story.
As I said, this was another great show. Trevelen built a great motorcycle and so did Paul and Keino. There was no winner, no loser. They should have given them both trophy’s for their work. Do you remember when Billy and Larry did just that? They cut the trophy in half.