What started out to be just one more bike for Steve Owens turned into a change of pace and a way of life. OK maybe that is a little strong, but Steve has always owned a bike in some form, from dirt to street, though most he has owned or built have been metric. They all started out the same way: he would pick up a cheap bike that he could wrench on, fix up, and sell to buy the next one. Well after years of doing this, he changed it up one day by picking up a little bobber that he intended to keep for awhile. It was in desperate need of work but came at a good price, and he could stand to make a few dollars on the deal. Steve always worked on his own bikes because he didn’t have the money to pay for someone to do the work for him. This bike was no different. Every day after getting home from work at the Toyota plant he would spend the night wrenching away. Steve is good with tools and has to do things his way. Steve is also patient with his bikes, because no matter how big or small the job, he always has to save the money to do it right.
It was a yearlong ordeal to get his bobber the way he wanted it. At the time he thought it was the best bike on the planet. It was fast, clean, and had a custom paintjob that Steve applied himself. He rode the bike until the tires were slick and the seat was worn out.
However, the day came when a car made a bad move out of nowhere, and Steve and his bobber went down. After a very long battle with the insurance company, he received a check and had to decide what to do with it. Building another bike was the only thing he could think about, but what style? He knew how much fun that little bobber was to ride around town, but at that point Steve was thinking bigger. After attending the Thunder Beach Bike Rally in Panama City, Florida, and seeing so many cool baggers, he was thinking about a change of pace. He always felt that a bagger was for the old and slow, but he noticed that most of the bagger guys were about the same age as him. He also was picking up on a trend amongst the baggers: they had the most real estate for the coolest paintjobs. He also needed some good suspension and a comfortable seat for his back. Steve made up his mind, he was going to get himself a bagger and work his magic to make it stand out.
Steve went looking for the best deal he could find on a used bike with the lowest miles and something that had not already been customized or repainted. When Steve came across a friend with a bone-stock ’08 Street Glide for sale, he took it for a testride. As soon as he cut the engine, he had to have it. All Steve could see were the possibilities. Like most guys, Steve had a plan to get the bike done in time for the next rally, which just happened to be Daytona Bike Week. But he wasn’t sure his wallet would let him.
At first all Steve did was add a new set of wheels, some fresh sheetmetal that he painted, and some chrome, but it still didn’t have the look he was after. It needed something more, something bigger, something to make it stand out from all the other Glides. He sold that first set of wheels and ordered new ones from Renegade; an 18-inch rear and a 26-incher up front. He needed to fit the front wheel to his bike, so with the help of his buddy, Dan Parker, he raked the neck and modified the lower leg tubes. Steve then ordered a fender from B’Cool to fit over this beast of a front wheel. Once all the fab work was complete, the bike was stripped down and prepped for paint. This time Steve decided he would paint the frame to match all the sheetmetal, so everything was removed from the frame and bead-blasted for molding and paint. Once the frame was back, Steve wasted no time covering it and the sheetmetal with his secret paint stash. It was from an old batch of discontinued blue paint from the Toyota 4Runner line. Steve likes the color so much, almost all of his bikes have had this color on them somewhere, but this was the first painted entirely with it. He also decided it didn’t need any graphics. Once all the paint dried, Steve started putting the bike back together, adding new bars from Klock Werks, PM grips, an Arlen Ness mirror, a PYO dash, and H-D gauge bezels, as well as upgrading the sound system with HogTunes speakers and amplifier.
The bike came together fast and in time to make all the trips Steve had planned for the year. All of his friends are blown away by how well it turned out. It ended up just the way Steve envisioned it with clean, simple lines that catch the eye, and it did just that. At its first show, it was a People’s Choice winner. Not bad for a do-it-yourself build. B