In a place known for soul crushing heat, massive urban sprawl and the distinction of being a city that by any logical thought should not even exist, it is good to have some real people around you. Such is the case in Phoenix, AZ. The people you find in a place like Phoenix often prove to be some of the best allies you could ask for. Joel Pippett is one of those guys.
Joel started down the two wheel path in the seventies riding dirt bikes as a kid, and that early exposure developed into a lifelong love of all things motorcycle. You may not know his name or his Marvelus Customs shop, but odds are you have seen his handiwork on this very site and the pages of DicE and Greasy Kulture. Be it a chopper or cafe bike, Joel has a knack for creating stylish, artful pieces of British iron. As Joel tells it, he started the shop in 2001 focusing on pre-unit Triumphs because at the time most guys wanted the unit bikes and the pre-units could be picked up for a bargain. Well, times have changed and the early bits are all the rage. So the only logical thing to do is move on to the unit bikes. See where this is going?
Another example of the Marvelus mindset is Joel's shovelhead. It's a cone shovel, not a generator. Why a cone you ask? Speed, reliability, and cost sum it up. Joel rides a lot, and he rides fast. Staying ahead of or behind the trends and building affordable, rideable bikes with loads of style is what Marvelus Customs is about. This is not to say that a person can't build a fast and reliable early shovel, pan, or knuckle. It is a personal preference and style that just happens to work like a charm for Mr. Pippett and the lucky owners of his creations. Hard work, some hard living and a strong sense of family and friends help to make Joel one of "those" guys that we are fortunate to encounter in our travels.
Story and Photos by Coalition Imagery
Marvelus Customs is Joel Pippett of Phoenix, AZ