Custom Harley, Chopper, Fuel Curve

Custom Harley – Dave’s 400lb Mean Machine

When we first caught a glimpse of Dave’s Custom Harley Deluxe last year in Maui, we knew full well that he had another trick up his sleeve.

Finally, the stars aligned and we were able to check out Dave’s custom chopper up close. After a bit of fiddling in the garage we rolled it out as the sun was going down behind a Northern California winter sky.

Custom Harley, Chopper, Fuel Curve

With the sun setting fast, we didn’t have much time to peak around the rigid Santee chassis that’s been modified with a 4-inch backbone stretch that helps give it the long, low look Dave was going for.

Custom Harley, Chopper, Fuel Curve

Helping to round that look off are Paughco springers, two inches over stock and powder coated black, along with Pastrana FMX/ATV Race Contour Pro Taper bars with Scott grips for reliable feel and feedback.

Custom Harley, Chopper, Fuel Curve

Out back a nice, fat 180/60R16 Avon Venom tire is wrapped around a 16×7″ 40-spoke wheel that is spot-on Up front, Dave’s opted for a 21×3″ wheel of the same style with some Dunlop rubber.

Custom Harley, Chopper, Fuel Curve

You might have noticed there is no front brake at all. While it keeps the bike clean and simple, you definitely need an experienced rider behind the bars to run this setup. In the rear there is a stock Harley Davidson brake with a chromed caliper, adding further style points.


Stuffed into the middle of it all is an 80ci Harley Davidson Evo v-twin. With a Mikuni carb and a custom velocity stack off to the side, it’s a damn good-looking machine.

Custom Harley, Chopper, Fuel Curve

Wrapped LAF pipes give the hearty motor a massive roar before the power is sent out through a RevTech 5 speed via a BDL 3-inch open belt drive. The final drive is handled via chain, the result of which is a kick in the pants like nothing else.

Custom Harley, Chopper, Fuel Curve

With the bike weighing in at only 400 pounds, this thing is unreal off the line.

Custom Harley, Chopper, Fuel Curve

A number of other details round the bike off nicely, like custom mid controls which Dave tells us were built by Rob Gist. With finishing touches like the seat and the simple but amazing pinstriping — which was done by Hawaii local Jon Pagaduan — this is a very complete build.

Custom Harley, Chopper, Fuel CurveCustom Harley, Chopper, Fuel Curve

While this was supposed to be a quick visit to beat the sunset, as things often go, we ended up talking bikes, hot-rods, and just about anything with wheels that goes fast. Dave told us while he used to cruise regularly when the bikes were in Hawaii, he hasn’t had us much opportunity on this side of the Pacific.

Custom Harley, Chopper, Fuel Curve

The cold, wet winter conditions aren’t the only deterrent, either. As anyone in California will know, our wonderful Department of Motor Vehicles seems to take great satisfaction in slowing down the process of getting cars and motorcycles alike tagged and registered.

Dave’s finally hopped through all the hoops out here in the Golden State and he says our visit has really lit a fire under him to get back on this thing.

Custom Harley, Chopper, Fuel CurveHere’s to many more quality hours spent tinkering in the garage and ripping this thing into the sunset.

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Trevor Ryan is a track day photographer from Northern California. He has experience in many different areas of photography but always comes back to automotive work in the end. To him, nothing is more rewarding than creating an amazing image of a car. Having purchased a ’66 Mustang almost six years ago, he had no choice but to end up immersed in car culture sooner or later. He also owns a ’99 Miata that he takes to the track. He has love for every part of car culture and besides track days often makes it to drift events, Cars and Coffee, tuner shows, and anything else he can find.

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