Top 3 of the 2011 AMD World Championship Freestyle class: Satya Kraus of Kraus Motor Co (left) (3rd place), newly-crowned World Champion Ken Tabata of Tavax Engineering (center) and Larry Houghton of Lamb Engineering (2nd place).
Many internationally known custom builders headed to Sturgis to compete in the 2011 World Championship of Custom Bike Building but it was a relatively unknown customizer that took the top honors.
After working on his bike for 3-1/2 years Ken Tabata, of Tavax Engineering, Yao City, Osaka, Japan, appeared in Sturgis and now he is preparing to leave as the 2011 World Champion of Custom Bike Building. He describes his winning bike, TAVAX2011V, as being designed to look like a Cheetah about to pounce, all dynamic movement and power.
Taking a less complex styling route, Larry Houghton, of Lamb Engineering, secured second place with Son of a Gun. Based around and eBay find 1951 BSA single cylinder engine and Talon motocross wheels, Larry built the rest of the bike himself often collecting material from the scrap bins of friends in the engineering trade.
When it comes to building bikes Satya Kraus’ motto is always for the bike to have everything it needs and nothing it doesn’t. It’s an ideal he has ably demonstrated on Bolide, the bike with which he placed third in the World Championship of Custom Bike Building.
A first in 2011 for the World Championship was the entry of a sidecar outfit and it was this outfit, Abnormal Cycles’ Union, that took the honors in the Modified Harley class. The Model ‘U’ powered outfit features a stock frame fitted with a custom sidecar body and a leaf spring Indian style front end, which includes a pair of handlebars created to also look like a leaf spring.
Hand formed fuel tank, rear fender tail section, oil tank, exhaust pipes, handle bars and mounts, rearsets, headlight number plate, seat suspension, tail light, battery box, steering damper mounts, motor mount and many more details. Ignition coils are located near battery box along with all electrical connections.
Concept… Nascar meets cafe racer, modified H-D gas tank in house at SS&C, including twin race fillers. Frame has been totally cleaned and fender rails chopped. Rear fender handmade at SS&C, exhausts handmade at the Speed Shop, front airbox manufactured to house the battery, the oil tank and electrics.
Entire bike designed and developed at Darwin Motorcycle headquarters. Hand formed body. Machined top clamp using Summit Machine mil. Includes Stack gauge with progressive shift light, lap timer, speedo. Also incorporated is radar detector. Custom seat by Hix design. Vortex foot controls, bars and sprocket. Beringer Hand controls.
Armed with his knowledge and his Rockwell Hardness Tester, Mike arrived in America, and discovered many of his idols of Indian restoration were false. The cheap parts – even many expensive ones – were weak as putty, and would quickly fail. With the help of his fair wife Carolyn, Mike started to make parts that were strong and long-lasting.
Established in 1992 Okazaki City, Japan, Zero Engineering is one of the foremost names in the custom motorcycle industry. Engine Make S&S 96ci, Frame Make Zero Engineering soft tail Rake 38, Front End Zero Engineering Springer, Drivetrain Open primary , Wheels 16″ spoke front and rear, Tyres Avon 5.00X16, Hydraulic Disc Brakes.
Full custom Cafe style CB836CR Honda. Every component on this bike was made for this bike. 50% of this bike was made by AFT Customs Girls. Bike Features Honda 836 engine, Frame TPJ Customs / Cafe with 28*, Front End Yamaha R1, Swingarm TPJ Customs, Drivetrain Honda/Barnett, Wheels Custom 19″ front and rear.
Built for Cafe Racer TV on HD Theatre; Stainless Exhaust with Cone Engineering mufflers; CR racing carbs; oil tank built into swingarm; Honda tank with knee cutouts and aircraft cap; aluminum tail section with cast aluminum tailight; Beringer hubs and brakes; Stainless clip ons with Beringer controls and LA Choprods internal throttle; cast aluminum headlight with Buell lense and ring
Frame was designed and built out of leaf springs so it would function also as front and rear suspension. a Yamaha 450 engine was used for this concept with minor performance add-ons. Fold away seat, a beehive gas tank and a lot more. Etc….