Show Class Magazine's People Champ 4


The Show Class Magazine's People's Champ competition continues to focus on today's garage builders. There are twenty-four strong candidates this year all striving to become an Invited Builder for Born-Free 8. Today marks the first round of voting which will help move the "Lucky Thirteen" to the next round.



This bike is mechanical first, aesthetic second. A 1300 mag fired Evo and a 4-speed suicide shift setup. The exhaust wraps around to the left and twists through the modified Acme frame. Things to come are the fine details. Like dual adjusters for the axle. Cracking the engine to do external oil lines, as well as the oil return. Shaping the cylinders and heads ... And then we'll see where that leads us when we start to put on all the finishing touches. This bike is being built as a daily rider and will be ridden from coast to coast in June. -Alex



We're just a couple harelips out in Minnesota choppin our hearts out. We're reworking stock pieces and cherry picking some of our favorite Harley lines, shapes and parts to elaborate on. Our bike will feel recognizable but ultimately unique to itself. You're looking at an ultra-narrowed swingarm with Wishbone front legs and a Bullneck up top. The motor is a pan right and a shovel left case. We're also adding Dual carbs, Akronts and a set of custom made "Charlie's" legs all with full polish and Cali show chrome finish. We've got lots of additional trick parts and ideas to come. We genuinely want to honor the idea of being a "people's builder" so we're gonna let it all hang out. We hope you'll throw us a vote come March. Many thanks! -Charlie & Brian



I'm building a 1955 pan/shovel long bike that I'm fucking stoked on! 18" rear & 21" front wheels with a 30" over offset Harley Springer in a 4" up wishbone frame with a 4' tall sissy bar. I'm gonna weld a narrowed flat bottom sportster tank to it & run a foot clutch, looking to make it a high bar wheelie machine!! Thanks! -Corey



Sup guys! Just checking in with some progress pics of the Panhead!! Things are going pretty good, the fab work is coming along. I'm just about ready to pull the engine apart and send stuff out to chrome and polish!! I've got the gas tank bolted down and a few other parts to build but I think we're doing pretty good over here on Mulberry St!! Had a nice long talk this weekend with my buddy who's painting the bike and I think it's gonna be fuckin killer!! Thanks again guys can't wait to finish my chopper! -Daril



"Crystal Beth" 84" 1968 FL - I put this bike together using all my favourite stuff, it's a 1951 wishbone frame I de-raked to 25 degrees, VL rear leg with a big twin front leg to raise it up a little extra, 2" offset risers, mouse trap and kick shift, seat was done by Adam at river seat co, I sprayed 2 shades of blue candy over metallic silver and fine silver flake, heavily influenced by Larry Watson and Gene Winfield but none were near the quality haha. This bike isn't groundbreaking or crazy by any means, it's old parts I've collected for cheap as possible, trading, fixing and making things work together and that's the way I like it. Thanks! -Elias



What up guys! Everything is moving along smooth on my build. I have the motor 100% done and is now on my roller. I finished up the rebuild on my WLA springer with an original WLA brake/ hub laced to a 21" Dunlop wheel. The rear wheel is an original 18" Triumph wrapped in a zig zag, Firestone. I have the rest of the bike mocked up and I'm ready to start making everything permanent and get everything functioning correctly. Still a lot to do but she's looking like a bike! Thanks. -Frankie



I'm building a chopper with a 1965 pan-shovel motor. I'm trying to modify stock Harley components, and make custom parts that could be mistaken as OEM. My goal is to keep people scratching their heads because I always get stoked when I can't figure out how someone made something. I'm making due with what I have and trying to set myself apart by using non-traditional fabrication techniques. There will be a handful of one-off cast parts, as well as some blown-glass components on this bike. I want to build something original and timeless, without it being over the top. Thanks. -Greg



The bike is based off a concept that Harley could have produced - the '36 Knucklehead with big twin flat. The bike's nickname so far has been the unobtainium because it's taken myself and a few of others years of scavenging and collecting to find all the right pieces. As of right now I'm focusing on getting the original internals in order on the motor. The short cut is to buy all new pieces, and slap it together but like with anything, we're doing this right and it starts with original parts. Over the next 20 days, we'll be hand-picking our front end out and tins. The image I have is a sleek clean front end, fully chromed, followed by narrowed flat tanks that hug the frame. Once again, all original parts we're either chopping or totally bastardizing to make this build work. We feel like a lot of guys will probably bust our balls for derestorizing parts and completely "ruining" them but then again, we wouldn't be having fun if we had to build shit by the book. Thanks. -Greg



The Sorceress is the match to my Custom Van The Sorcerer. The bike is being built in the style of a late 70s early 80s club bike, with the small exception of a vintage, narrowed and twisted 40" over stock Harley Springer. The survivor Ironhead frame will be converted to house a high-performance Shovelhead motor. Running a shovelhead mag on the rear goes along with the "club" look as do the tall Panhead style risers. Dual throat Weber carb and van/Hotrod inspired exhaust should give the bike some go. Subtle molded rear "cowl/seat pan" will hang a ribbed chrome Wassel style fender. The bike will be painted black with a mural on the tank. -Jake



I'm Building a 1954 45 flathead servi-car chopped Ed Roth style. 12’’ over front-end, with turbine rear rims, and the original 1970's muscle car rubber BF-Goodrich Radial T/A's and 21' spool front hub w/Avon Speedmaster. I plan to do a crazy ass psychedelic paint job. Even though I have all the tooling in my shop I’m doing this 1970’s traditional style, with basic tools you would find in any Motorhead's garage. The way it would’ve been built back in the day and how I was originally taught when I started building in the early 90’s. I can't wait for you to see it completed! I can't build this beast fast enough! Other than the body everything’s going to be chromed. "I’d rather be homeless then chromeless!" -James



For People's Champ 4 I'm building a 1950 FL Panhead with a matching 4-speed ratchet top. The motor is being built as a stock 74" and will be all gray/chrome/polished as well as the transmission, the transmission will be hand shift with a VERY unique yet subtle shifter. The motor will be fuel fed from a Lake injection carb, the bike will sit on an 18/21 wheel combo with the 21" nestled as tight as possible between 49mm fork tubes. Yea narrowed 49mm fork tubes that will be 2-4" over not sure yet. Doing some secret Modifying additions to a narrowed Wassel tank from Throttle addiction, crazy up sweeps as you see and stock dimension 1948 wishbone frame with all the modern day chop jobs done to it. Still figuring out the rest but this bike will be great! Thanks to Show Class & Born-Free for the opportunity! -Jeremiah



This bike is my Artistry in Iron build so I figured I'd make the push to have it done for Born-Free as well! It's a 120" John Harman shovelhead & I'm doing a Hilborn injected turbo setup on it with a Tim Doherty Machine 4 speed ratchet trans. I'm making my own wheels, an 18" rear 10 spoke 4.5" slick paired with a 21" front 10 spoke 2.75 Goodyear. I'm also going to hand make a 3/4" tube frame, a springless "springer" front end, & all sheet metal and every other component will be built by me in house! I've been through this fiasco once before and I won't disappoint! Thanks!! -Johnny



My motorcycle is a 1952 BSA Drag bike that I will race and ride on the street frequently. My goal is to have at least 100 hp in a light weight, narrow design. The frame is a BSA A10 Plunger that has been chrome plated. The mill is a polished supercharged 684cc BSA twin that will have a custom one-off grind camshaft. I will either run two Lakes injectors or Amal GP's for the induction. The front end is a shortened BSA Bantam with a 21" Akront spool while the rear is an 18" Akront laced to a BSA quick release hub wrapped with an NOS Avon 4" slick.This bike will also have a fully engraved tank strip and engine side covers along with many other custom details. I have started making a set of detachable wheelie bars for those race days! Thanks again! -Jorel



The bike I'm building for the comp is a 1951 Harley Panhead. It's in the fab process now along with the motor and trans getting rebuilt. I love one of a kind builds so I will be building a truly handmade bike. I really enjoy custom sheet metal work and design with a lot of different influence and I will be focusing a lot on that. I have started with a 21" front wheel and a 16" rear to give it a low stance with a custom handmade 5" under springer. I also want to incorporate a bunch of different metals and fab process into this build, so I'm doing brass inserts with my handmade tank, rear fender, and seat. Then I will tie it all together with a copper oil tank, a matching copper headlight, and stainless exhaust system. There will be accents of different metals to bring it all together in the end. I want this bike to be a rolling work of metal art and design! Another big part of this build for me is to make it very rideable! What's an awesome bike if you can't rip on it! So that's about it for now! Thanks for looking! -Josh



What I will be building for this year's People’s Champ contest might be a bit different than anything else, but I think you will dig it a lot! Back in the 20's and 30's guys that weren't factory sponsored, or didn't have access to factory race bikes would take stock bikes and chop and hack anything off of them that wasn't necessary, in an effort to make them lighter and lower, aka faster and agiler. In doing so, some amazing looking minimalist bikes were created, and that is the feeling and look I am going for. The run down on my bike: I will shorten the frame in spots, add bracing where needed, and lower the overall look and stance of the bike. I will be hand building a set of tanks to replicate what they would have built back in the day. I will try to use as many parts as I have laying around the shop, as well as hand building what I don't have, just as they would have back in the day. The motor will be just as wild as the rest of the build, I will be lightening, polished, and modified every bit that I can to make this little motor breath fire, did I mention it will run on alcohol!? This is a very tight budget build, not just something I am throwing money at. I want it to have the heart and soul of an old custom race bike, and that doesn't get created just by throwing money at something! I look forward to bringing some history to this event, I also look forward to talking with and meeting many new faces while working on this build. -Justin



My name's Kevin McKay. I'm from Concord, North Carolina and I'm building a Panhead. More specifically, a clone of the red and white bike from The Wild Angels. It has a wishbone frame, Dellorto SS1 carb, early sportster gauges, wassell tank and fender, Bates ride off stand, and 19" rear and 21" front wheels both with mechanical brakes. The frame I started with was raked, extended, and so messed up the engine mounts wouldn't line up, so I put it back to stock. I made the sissy bar, handlebars, and a bunch of mounts, and chopped up a few different sets of exhaust to make everything look just right. I'm doing all this myself including the paint job to come. The only thing sent out will be chrome plating. Thanks for digging on what I do! High Style til I die. -Kevin



I'm just a dude who likes to ride motorbikes, working in my home garage with basic hand tools. Last summer I rode about 6,000 miles across the US to get to & from the Born-Free Show. The bikes there were amazing, and during the People's Champ party at Cooks, I started to wonder if I could build something myself. So as the world turns, here I am trying to create my idea of a perfect chopper... a 1970's era NorCal club bike. Performance & reliability are an absolute requirement for me, so I'm using an S&S 93HC cone shovelhead engine and a Baker 6-speed transmission. No apologies for these 'period incorrect' mechanical choices, as they improve, not replace classic form. My goal is mechanical simplicity and bulletproof reliability, across town or across the country. Something made to be ridden hard, scratched, dented, tested, and proven. It's really difficult to make anything that is completely functional but artistic as well... but in that purity of function lies the highest form of artistic expression. Less is best, in my opinion. Thanks for following my build! -Lincoln



My Father Norman and I are building a 1970s style Panhead chopper. We're building the chopper my father would have loved to build in the 70s but in England Panheads were pretty unobtainable so they could only build Triumph's and other English bikes. So now we'rebasing this chopper around a tricked out Panhead stroker motor with Andrews cams, Jims crank, Delkron cases, and obviously a bigger bore. We put it in a 53 wishbone frame that we have stretched 2" up. We're welding a lot of round bar to the frame to give it a twisted look and all the tin will be plated and welded in. Everything on the bike will be hand fabricated or modified then there will be extensive molding and extremely psychedelic paint and a purple crushed velvet seat Cheers. - Louie & Norman



I wanted to do something a little bit different so I decided to build a stainless single down tube frame to start with. I plan on a majority of the bike to be stainless including the gas tank and oil bag which I'll be making. The front end will be a super narrow 39mm with 21 akront high shoulder rims laced to a 3-piece spool. The rear rim will be a matching style 18. The motor will be a 96ci stroker with an XR configuration matched to a ratchet top 4 speed. Hope you guys like what you're looking at! -Matt



I'm trying my best to build a true Tough Guy bike and fighting the urge to put a 21" spool on currently. Waiting on dual disc front brake stuff, finishing up fab work, and having heavy conversations with Darryl about paint. My seat is out getting upholstered and I'll hopefully be breaking down for paint and chrome prep in the next few weeks. Thanks. -Reece



Hello all, what we have here is my Peoples Champ 4 build. It's a 64 pan. The frame started out as an early wishbone frame with bad rake job. Never really liked it so, with the help of Dave at Speed Metal Cycles we turned this frame into a ripper and floated the tank with hidden mounts. My plan for building this bike is to do so with little amounts of machining or modern technology. I want to show that a People's Champ bike can be built by anyone with a vision and a good set of basic tools. We all have our circle of friends where each one has a talent of their own. This is how a bike was built "back in the day" and this is how I've chosen to build this bike. I hope you like what you see. Thank you. -Rueben



I'm building a 1975 shovelhead that's centered around an early 70s style chopper with a lot of twists that lends itself to my style. My intentions are not to build a "period correct" chopper but instead, a one-off bike that can be ridden hard and performs well while doing it. So I heavily modified the original swingarm frame with a narrowed rigid rear section that has a slight swoop to the top rails to lower the seating area a little more. The original hourglass neck was retained and the front tubes were stretched with no stretch of the backbone to give it a more aggressive and better handling set up. The rake is at 36 degrees and I'm going to modify the original narrow glide trees that hold the 6" over tubes along with shaving the lower legs. I'm currently waiting for the shipment of the 18" rear wheel that'll be used and I'm rolling a loaner right now. I just finished and mounted the hand made gas tank. Next up I'll be making a rear fender and stainless sissy bar then on to a one off wrap around oil tank. There will be tons of one-off stainless pieces on this bike as it's my material of choice. I hope y'all dig what I'm doing and stay tuned for more updates as I'm just getting going good! God Bless! -Rhett



Well, it's been a hectic month, I'm nowhere near where I was hoping to be at this point. Bouncing around between employers had made for a hectic winter. However, I do have more than a few iron's in the fire. Hopefully, you'll see some real progress as I complete all the things that I've started throughout February. Well enough with my excuses I'll just tell y'all what I have planned....I've always had a real hard on for century Sportster, and the Nor Cal/East Bay style of the early 70's. So that's the look I'm going for. The handlebar/ riser combo that I was hoping would be done at this point will mimic the wishbone front legs on my Ness style Springer, and be super narrow, they will also have OEM internal throttle, and spark advance to open up my Webber (THEE carb to have back then) and to also advance/retard my mag. The sissy will be short and narrow, the seat will be a little cobra style, and everything (gas tank, oil bag, and fender, tail light) will get welded and molded to the frame. My foot controls are probably a lil over engineered... I'm planning on running the brake line through the frame... I have my materials, I just need to get started on them. As far as paint goes BLACK!!! And lots of it.... Still not sure about tank art.... I'm thinking early 70's Italian sexploitation / horror movie art. Don't lose faith in me, I was always told slow and steady wins the race. Thanks and I hope to see y’all at cooks corner in June! -Steve



I'm building a 1979, 80" shovelhead. I wanted to build a long, clean, and classy chopper. I made the frame using most of the stock castings cut out of the OEM swingarm frame and went 7" up and 50° in the neck. The narrow springer I made is 24" over with 3.5" between the rear legs. Motor and Trans were both in good working order when pulled. They were cleaned up real nice, all new gaskets, hardware, parts polished, Morris Magneto, S&S carb, Heckman bird deflector. For the wheels, I went with a 16" invader with a juice drum in the rear and a 21" spool invader out front. Most, if not all, of the remaining parts for the bike will be made from stainless: oil tank, kickstand, exhaust, handlebars, sissy bar, foot controls, wheel spacers, motor mount, and anything else I'm forgetting. Tall king/queen seat has a stash compartment and will have all the old style flair: piping, chrome buttons, and a bitchin stitching pattern. For the tank, I used a Throttle Addiction shell and made the bottom and tunnel to match the curve of the frames top tube. As far as finishes, Darryl Rotten is going to be painting the tank, frame, and fender. I'm thinking black with a little gold leaf and a nice small mural on the back part of the tank. The only thing that should needs chroming is the springer. All the stainless parts will be polished. Thanks for looking. -Vince



Votes will be accepted through Show Class Magazine, Loser Machine, and Instagram. You can help each builder move forward by visiting all three accounts. Polls close on March 11, 2016, best of luck to all involved!


Big thanks to Tim and Justin for keeping this competition going!


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