Walt Gemeinhardt's Pony Boy Shovelhead


The old saw about the gruffest exteriors always holding the biggest hearts may be older than the recipe for Chinese gunpowder, but in the case of Walter Gemeinhardt, the shoe fits. I met this rock 'n roll road manager, drum tech, motorcycle shop owner and big thinker in 2007 at a greasy spoon in Hoboken. Walt is a builder in his own right, but when the chance arose to take the pink on Jason Roche's shovelhead, the man who made the Gypsy Run what it is today grabbed it.

Jason Roche is the artisan at Special '79. His work is a staple in ChopCult fab threads, but this is the first time we've featured one of his creations. Walter bought the bike when Jason mentioned his golden beauty might be headed to eBay. The trade between friends consisted of a shovel swap plus some cash, but nobody is saying which way those dead presidents traveled. After christening his new ride Pony Boy, Walter set out to make it his own. Walt's a motor freak, so the first thing he tore into was Pony Boy's mill. Next came some Biltwell bars and risers, plus a couple secret tweaks only Walter knows about. The rest of the specs are boilerplate, and can be seen in the photos.



Owner: Walter Gemeinhardt

Builder/fabricator: Special '79

Motor model, year, and mods, if any: 1975 74" shovel

Frame model year and mods: hardtailed 4-speed

Fork model, year and mods: 39mm Narrowglide with shaved sliders

Front wheel: H-D Narrowglide hub on a 21" rim

Rear wheel: 60-spoke 16" with disk brake

Primary drive style, model, mods: Carved up 4-speed primary cover with a 1.5" belt; 5-finger hub

Thanks: To my wife Lori for putting up with all my crap


For more info on Walter's life and times, visit Kickstart Cycles.

Go here more info on the East Coast Gypsy Run.

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Commented on 9-13-2010 At 08:18 am

diggin the paint, everything else is pretty nice too though

Commented on 9-13-2010 At 09:03 am

Good work, Walt. Wish I could of seen you on that thing. Oh wait, EDR4 is coming up!

Commented on 9-13-2010 At 09:55 am

OK, this is how i really got the bike... I was talking to Special Jay one day and he mentioned that he was putting his gold bike up on the eBay. "Why would you want to sell such a good looking bike Jay?" well, If I'm gonna build bikes, I gotta build some more bikes!" "Ok. Cool. If it don't sell give me a call." about a week later Jay called me up and said he still had the bike. Since he needed some projects and I needed a yellow chopper we came up with a mutually beneficial but, VERY complicated trade involving motorcycle parts, motors, frames a loaf of bread and strangely enuf a strawberry shortcake coloring book. It is a great bike. The paint in particular gets a lot of notice. (artfully done by image one) Jay thinks he got the better of the deal, but I know I did. I can't wait to see what he comes up with next.


Commented on 9-15-2010 At 12:14 am

sweet shovelhead !

Commented on 9-13-2010 At 01:54 pm

I can only imagine what this bike looks like in person. Jay's website is great and has some kick ass tech videos on it.

Commented on 9-13-2010 At 02:01 pm

nice, great-looking shovel although I'm not big on yellow.

Commented on 9-13-2010 At 02:27 pm

Stay gold Pony Boy. Walt, you still owe me that coloring book.

I miss this bike a ton and am now realizing how much easier it is to build a good looking rigid compared to building a cohesive, original looking swingarm bike.

Commented on 9-13-2010 At 06:18 pm

That sissy bar is bad ass!

Commented on 9-13-2010 At 08:39 pm

Seriously all this kidding is just inviting the wrath of The Peculiar Purple Pieman of Porcupine Peak - last time people mocked him, he flooded Strawberryland and stole all the berries in the valley. Just don't say I didn't warn you...

Commented on 9-14-2010 At 07:53 pm

Not one but TWO good men.

Commented on 9-17-2010 At 07:46 am

I dig it man! very nice indeed. it is nice to see these younger cats chopping up some old iron...thats is what's all about! a passion!

Commented on 9-24-2010 At 05:28 am

Pictures don't come close to how sharp this thing looks flyin down a back road

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