According to its builder, "There's nothing special about this bike. Nothing." Anyone who remembers following Flatiron Mike as he split lanes and took names on EDR II might beg to differ. Mike built this bike especially for the mean streets of Tijuana. Everything FIM learned about dodging Mexican border merchants on EDR I in '06 informed the design and specs of his second Baja assault vessel. Here's what the man with a plan has to say about the shovel-powered hell rider known only as Kinger.
Twenty-eleven marks the fifth anniversary of my second scratch-built machine. This rigid-framed, sparingly appointed, fire-breathing hell rider was built especially for my second blitz into Baja, Mexico. Kinger’s one purpose was to get through Baja and back into the States.
Rewind to 2006. EDR I was a mindbending trip for me. It was my first MC run out West, and certainly my first ride into Mexico. I brought The Mule—my first scratch-built bike—for the challenge. I had no idea what to expect, who would be on the run or if I could even finish. It was the kind of leap only a fool or a condemned man would take. It turned out to be one of the most exhilarating motorcycle rides of my life. The last leg of EDR I was the most memorable. Rolling up the coast from Ensenada was a beautiful ride, but there was one last challenge: the border crossing at Tijuana. Taking a cue from fellow El Diablo Runner Caleb Owens, we split lanes for what seemed like two miles of bumper-to-bumper traffic on our way to the US border. Squeezing between cars and riding past taco carts, vendors, newspaper hawkers and panhandlers, it was totally wild. To this day, it’s still my favorite piece of riding. Thank, you Caleb.
I had already purchased a rigid frame and springer for my next build. I had plans to build a more traditional, stripped-down, barhopper style bike, but the memory of the TJ lane splitting weighed heavily on my mind. When I returned home to Connecticut, I made the decision to craft a tall, very narrow lane splitter for EDR II. Kinger turned out exactly as I had imagined, and it made my second dodge across the TJ border even more memorable than my first.
So what's a Kinger, you ask? Just a tall can of beer. Like I said, nothing special.
Motor: S&S 93” hi-comp, dual plug, cone Shovel with electronic ignition and Mikuni HSR42 carb
Transmission: Kick only, jockey shift Baker 6-into-4 speed case with BDL open primary belt and Competitor Clutch
Frame: V-Twin repro straight-leg panhead rigid
Forks: V-Twin repro stock length ’41-’46 inline Springer
Wheels: V-Twin repro 19” star hubs with Avon SMKII tires front and rear
Tins: NOS ‘70s Paughco axed gas tank, Aermacchi alloy rear fender
FIM fabrications: Lane splitter handlebars, jockey shifter, exhaust, license plate mount, battery tray, custom pogo seat setup and assorted other bits
Thanks: Many thanks to Bill and Harold for their hard work and dedication to the builders, fabricators, riders and enthusiasts who are contributing to the best MC scene in a long, long time
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