Media coverage for a custom motorcycle is the holy grail among bike builders, and the men who make a living in the game take the quest for press seriously. Of course, the rarest of birds is the illusive "cover bike." Such an accolade can add thousands of dollars to the value of a hand-built custom if and when the builder or owner chooses to sell it.
Nakul Poredi owns this cover-quality specimen, but garnering ink and pixels was the farthest thing from his mind when he raised this phoenix from the ashes. The promise Nakul made to the son of his bike's original owner is far more praiseworthy, which is why we are honored to share his story with ChopCult readers:
"My buddy and I came across our bikes in a package deal. The deal included one OIF model, and the 1970 TR6R 650 you see here. I picked the '70 Triumph because I wanted a small displacement bike with a single down tube. Both of the bikes came out of Kansas, and were the victims of a house fire. The bikes survived, but the owner did not. I never met the original owner, but I have since become friends with his son, and I told the guy I would do my best to make this bike something his father would have been proud of.
"The bike sat in my garage for six months while I thought about how I wanted it to look. After searching the Internet, I 'borrowed' some good ideas and dreamed up a couple of my own. To get my burn victim running, my friend Jesse and I rigged a makeshift gas tank out of a water bottle, put in a new set of points, and hooked up an old battery. She fired right up after just a couple kicks! I was relieved to say the least, as I had no idea whether the engine was alive or not.
"After I knew she ran, I made countless trips to Moore’s in Fullerton. I got her a new rear end and attempted to make my seat mount. I wanted to get the electrics right on this one, so I took her to Classic Cycles. I talked to Tony about the leaf spring for the seat, and he told me he had just what I needed in his back yard. When I bounced my ideas for the NSU levers off Tony, he told me making them work wouldn’t be a problem, either. With my work and family schedule, it became obvious that if I ever wanted to ride my bike, I may as well let the guys at Classic Cycles do their thing.
"I would stop by the shop a couple times a week to let them know what I wanted. Sometimes they gave me the “I don’t think so” look; other times they just scratched their heads and said okay. In the end she turned out way better than I had ever imagined. She was supposed to be a little beater to putt around with my buddies, but now she is truly a work of art. Every time I take her for a spin I always get a “thumbs up” or a “right on!” from someone on the road.
"Thanks to all the guys at Classic Cycles who graciously put up with all of my questions and changes over the five months or so. I’m way stoked on how she turned out. Now it’s time to ride."
Owner: Nakul Poredi
Bike's name: Margaret, or the Black Crow, or the Black Falcon… Nakul's not sure which
Builders: owner, his friend Jesse and Classic Cycles in Orange, CA
Year, size, model of motor: 1970 Triumph 650
Year, model of frame: same as motor
Engine mods, if any: None—just a rebuild with cosmetic freshening from Classic Cycles
Chassis mods: Hardtail from Moore’s Cycle
Year and model of fork: cleaned up stock 1970 Triumph
Front wheel size and style/model of hub: 21-inch, stock drum
Rear wheel size and style/model of hub: 18-inch, stock drum