The Blue King
We first saw this bike while lurking around the Ride Wright Wheels booth during California Bike Week and were floored. Mind you, there were tons of nice Road Kings in attendance, but how many had the combination of a 23-inch wheel dripped in gold with a tan gator seat and sky-high apes? None that were this firm.
Firm is an all-encompassing Chicano slang term meaning cool, bitchin' or just plain badass, and it fits this bike like a glove. This FLHR is a perfect specimen of a clean West Coast-style Road King that pretty much any guy with the right mindset and tools could build. In reality, only a few subtle changes were done to the stock bike. The bars, seat and wheels were changed out, but not much more has been done. The impact lies more in the choice of aftermarket parts that were coupled with a great factory paint scheme. Anyone can open up one of the big books and order a myriad of parts, but it takes a keen eye and much thought to make all the parts work together seamlessly without being over the top or just plain ugly.
The Blue King is owned by Angel Ambriz, Jr., who does have a bit of a head start in the tricking-out department by being employed by Ride Wright. He is deeply immersed in customizing bikes on the daily, so it was just a matter of time until the stock bike was going to lose some of its original equipment. When Angel thinks back to the day the bike was delivered in 2005 from the local Harley dealer, it was going to be a daily driver that was only to receive a few chrome items and a mild set of wheels. That was, until the customizing cucaracha bit him and everything changed.
During the fervor that ensued upon his first look at the bike in his driveway, Angel mulled over how he wanted it to look. He wanted it to sit low with a tall bar. After a few phone calls, he had boxes of parts and a game plan. A 2-inch drop from Progressive Suspension with a set of 19.5-inch apes from Boulebars fit the bill for how the bike was going to lay out. A custom 180 kit was also constructed in combination with a Russ Wernimont fender to get the fat look out back. In the booty department, an ostrich-skin seat with a matching "lady friend" pad was stitched up by Corbin. A few assorted covers and chrome bits from Arlen Ness were bolted up to add a bit more shine, but all other bling on this bike pales in comparison to the wheels. Drastically setting this bike apart from the rest is a set of 23-inch/18-inch Fat Daddies in show chrome with diamond-cut spokes that normally would be enough to get this bike much respect on the streets. By adding 24-karat-gold-plated hubs and nipples, this bike has shot straight up to high-roller status.
Though this Harley is nice, don't think for one minute that this bike is a trailer queen that only sees tarmac duty while sitting in the booth at shows. Its owner happily rides the wheels off this bike both locally as well as up and down the coast from LA to San Francisco and all over Baja Mexico.
Down in SoCal where wild seems to be the norm, it is good to see that restraint was used on this build. Whether it be for Angel's personal taste or the size of his wallet, Mr. Ambriz has definitely built one nice ride that gets noticed by bike junkies as well as people who normally wouldn't have a care in the world about Harleys.