Bobby Nails This Road Glide With Nostalgic Flair
Baggers, as with any bike, typically reflect the rider's personality and style. Bobby's Road Glide holds true to that theme and then some. You see, Bobby has owned many bikes over the years-he claims over 80-and his first bike was a Harley-Davidson dirt bike that his stepdad gave him. He has had full-blown customs and several stock Harleys, and in the last four years, he has customized several baggers, because it was something new to him and created a challenge to make something that is typically more utilitarian into a work of art. That is what Bobby does, whether it is designing motorcycles, pinstriping, tattooing or painting; he creates art. He always looks at each project and how he can create something unique that reflects his own tastes in one way or another. The previous baggers that he built were all typical custom baggers with lots of chrome and lots of black. This one was going to be different, and he knew it from the start. He had never customized a Road Glide, and after riding his stepdad's, he decided to see if he could find one and completely tear it apart. He liked the smooth, aerodynamic lines of the fairing as well as how it handled through the curvy mountain roads of Colorado. He looked around and eventually found a Road Glide that he could work with. It was a Road Glide Classic complete with the Tour-Pak, touring seat and all the doodads. He rode up to a friend's shop, and they all just laughed, because the guy who was usually riding a killer custom was on what they deemed an "old man's bike." Bobby laughed along with them and quietly started to put together the bike he wanted in his mind.
As soon as the bike hit his garage, he spent hours stripping everything off that didn't need to be there to make it more agile and also to conform it to the vision that he had for this bike. If he did it right, it wouldn't resemble a Road Glide at all, except for the fairing and frame. Usually the paint comes last on a build, but this bike was actually centered around the paint. Bobby had seen a bike that Bill Dodge built up in Sturgis named "Soy Sauce" that had a satin green finish, and that inspired this build. But he decided to go a step farther and make it weathered-looking. With that paint scheme in mind, he set to work building the bike around that paintjob. He started with the suspension and knew that the bike would need to come down at least a few inches, front and rear, and he'd need to change out the wheels, making the front a 21-inch. This changed the geometry as well as the handling characteristics, but Bobby made sure that when those changes were made, the bike still maintained a level profile. He had Colorado Custom cut the five-spoke wheels to his specs and picked up some rotors to match. Now that he had the suspension, brakes and tires figured out, it was time to move to the sheetmetal. He wanted to utilize the existing front fender but knew he would need to stretch it to fit the contour of the new 21-inch front wheel. After getting the front fender handled, he moved on to the back. He went to BadDad.com and ordered up a saddlebag extension and wide-fender kit. He knew all along that with the kit, he was going to have the license plate recessed in the fender and then mount some 1939 Ford taillights as directionals. While this was all happening, he had Rocky Mountain Harley-Davidson build up his motor to a 95-inch.