Randy Horseman's Burly Cafe Build


With so many cookie cutter hard tailed evo Sportsters on the road these days its nice to see one done up as a Café bike. I’ve always had affection for this style of ride and I have often wondered why so few take this approach with the Sporty platform.



I think one of the issues for many has been has been very little support from the aftermarket. That’s where Burly Brand comes in. While at first it may seem like a departure a company known for its ape hanger kits and slammer shocks. Once you meet David Zelma the brand manager for this innovative company it all makes sense. He and his team love all things motorcycle and he rides everything from vintage Honda’s to the well-known Plaidster a Burly Sportster with apes.


Burly Brand was one of the first to come aboard as a Greasy Dozen sponsor supporting Randy Horseman with parts for this tight little package below. I heard from Randy that David and the Burly guys were a great support by phone and email and Burly Brand provided the tail section, a signature piece to create Randy’s build in the Café category.



I saw the bike first hand at shoot at the Snake Hole Chopper loft in NYC and it wasn’t long before Randy was doing wheelies up and down the alley.  The bike just screamed of something that wanted to be bashed through intercity traffic and even seemed to have a bit of BMX style to it. Randy really pulled off the build with class and a stylish take on an American Café Racer.



I hope Randy’s efforts and the Burly Brands tail section inspire more of you to mix it up and try the Café Racer style on a build. I can say first hand the aggressive riding style of a Café Racer sure is a great way to burn of some stress at the end of the day. I figure everyone needs a chopper and a Café bike in the garage… a different tool for different moods. Here’s to tearing it up.





Owner and Location: Randy Horseman, Baltimore, MD.


Engine, year and make, model, modifications:  1992 1200 Sportster 


Frame:  Stock Frame, Hacked fender struts


Fork:  Burly 2" Lowering Springs


Tire/wheel size and style: Stock 16, 19 Mags, Firestone Tires


Favorite thing about this bike:  Super Fun to Rip on, can’t hurt it.


Next modification will be:  It changes a lot.


Other mods, accessories, cool parts, etc:  Burly Seat, Shocks, Bars, Pegs.  TCBros Risers, Biltwell Throttle, Custom Exhaust and Rewire



Any building or riding story or info you'd like to include:  Can’t beat a sportster for a cool looking, reliable Daily Rider. Almost 4000 miles on this build since it was completed in June.


Thanks to: BURLY Brand! Old Bike Barn, The Greasy Dozen, TCBros, Biltwell, Lowbrow, Lowside Mag, 


Give Randy a follow on Instagram

Comment with Facebook


Comment with Chopcult (42)

Commented on 11-14-2013 At 09:18 am

No front brake? Not much for performance for a "cafe".

Commented on 11-14-2013 At 09:40 am

Pretty sure randy can out ride most without a front brake. Also flat trackers don't have front brakes and they rip pretty hard

Commented on 11-14-2013 At 10:07 am

No offense, but shocks and a pre made bolt on seat pan shouldn't get ya a feature.. Kind of bummed on this one.

Commented on 11-14-2013 At 10:41 am

Bolt-on cult strikes again. Nothing against the bike or the owner, but I feel like these types of features are what's pulling more and more of the catalog part shoppers to a site about chopping and fabricating. When hacked fender struts are one of the only non bolt-on mods...

Commented on 11-14-2013 At 10:54 am

First and foremost, there's a little button on your screen that allows you to navigate away from "Bolt-on Cult" anytime you feel the need.
Second, anyone who as ever really built a bike from the ground up knows that there is always much more than meets the eye to every build, this bike is not a "Catalog Whore" like some people are suggesting. Randy puts his heart and soul into everything he touches, this bike no exception. Give it the once over in person and your mind will be changed to represent an actual opinion of the bike not just an internet tough guy quick discounted view.
Lastly, let's see the show winning builds you big mouths have under your belts. Show us the hand fabricated masterpiece you've painstakingly created on your own. I'll not hold my breat for the pictures, I'm not a fan of turning blue. Grow up assholes and learn to be supportive the way it seems your Mommy has not been to you.

Commented on 11-14-2013 At 11:10 am

First of that tail section takes some commitment... you have to hack off the rear frame rails to even use it. Secondly like I said in the article the point of featuring this bike is to show something a little different and yes some bikes have effing shocks. Let the debate continue but the facts are a lot of work and attention to detail went into the bike and its a fun little ride with a different twist on a Sportster (or are we all so individual that the only bikes welcome are hartailed 1986-2003 Sportsters) Because personally I've see plenty of those... -Bear

Commented on 11-14-2013 At 11:14 am

Got to see Randy's Yamaha and Honda around at B-more events. His stuff is super clean and built to be ridden. He doesn't cut corners either, his stuff is quality.

Commented on 11-14-2013 At 11:18 am

Burly makes good shit. Not everyone has a garage in the intercity to weld on a hard tail. Sportsters rule whether it's a cookie cutter or café, don't be a dick dudes. Nice bike Randy.

Commented on 11-14-2013 At 11:26 am

You know, I built this thing to rip around on this summer while I work on a couple other projects. It didn't take years to build, I didn't spend 20k on it and it does everything I want it to. I wired it from scratch, painted it, made the exhaust, machined a few spacers and stuff for the front brake delete. Only thing different from any other build is I didn't do the frame. But if the seat fits why cut it. By far not a show winner, but it wasn't meant to be. What do you guys daily beat on? how many hard tailed trailer fendered ugly bikes are out there? Just because you changed something doesn't mean you improved it. And the front brake deal... And the vintage tires.... If I wanted a sport bike that performed id buy a gixxer.

Commented on 11-14-2013 At 11:31 am

Oh, and I've got a garage, with a tig machine, lathe, and plenty of tools. I've done hardtails and new frames with shocks, machined sportbike frontends on sportsters all that. But that wasn't the intent of this bike. This thing was a quick fun build. Simple as that.

Commented on 11-14-2013 At 11:32 am

Well said randy. Bike may not be my style or alot if people's style. But it's different and you built for yourself and that's all that matters. All the hate on here is pretty pathetic considering alot if these guys hating are the ones who always speak of the chopper community being a "family". Show some respect. Not every bike featured needs to be a trophy winner full custom paint job fabricated every little bung on the bike type of build. It's a motorcycle and its fun. Building and riding these things is why we are all here on this site anyway. So stop hating and go ride... Or build.

Commented on 11-14-2013 At 12:22 pm

I really dig the bike..I first saw this on Instagram and loved it then before it even had the club bars on all you negative nancies out there complaining about this bike getting a feature, don't come to the site, I think he did a good job on this build...

Commented on 11-14-2013 At 01:59 pm

in an age when most people don't even do their own bolt on mods I think that the scoot is a fresh idea for an old style it's not my style but I respect the work and a mans right to build his scoot his way bolt on or not

Commented on 11-14-2013 At 01:59 pm

I dig it, looks like fun and tuff! Hey Burly, when you gonna make those shocks for later model sportsters?

Commented on 11-14-2013 At 03:18 pm

I don’t see the need for the negative comments, bike looks rad, and its probably fun as all shit to rip around on. What more could you want?

Commented on 11-14-2013 At 03:55 pm


"First and foremost, there's a little button on your screen that allows you to navigate away from "Bolt-on Cult" anytime you feel the need.....
Lastly, let's see the show winning builds you big mouths have under your belts. Show us the hand fabricated masterpiece you've painstakingly created on your own. I'll not hold my breat for the pictures, I'm not a fan of turning blue. Grow up assholes and learn to be supportive the way it seems your Mommy has not been to you."

I believe I said "NOTHING AGAINST THE BIKE OR OWNER", before I posted my opinion on it being a feature. Defending the build, or telling everyone how many tools you have is irrelevant. I've got a TIG, a bunch of tools, and parts I've made from scratch do a million other people on this site....who cares? Nobody said, "this bike sucks, I've built much better".

Feel free to jizz all over the thing if you want, but don't get all bent out of shape when someone has an opinion different than yours. It's a cool bike, I just thought it was a weird choice for a FEATURE on a site called CHOP CULT (another opinion before you cry about it).

Commented on 11-14-2013 At 05:28 pm

Ohhh the internet. Filled with special people. I'm gonna get back to real life.

Commented on 11-14-2013 At 05:32 pm

I like that thing. I got to see it in person. In fact I was a few feet away during that shoot. That bike is a bad ass little ripper. Good have met you Randy. Glad you guys came to the Snake hole garage that day too. It was an awsome weekend to say the least. I think anyone knocking this bike is an idiot. I mean. What are you building? A "period" chop with "bolt ons" readily available in 1972? Most of the stuff built is with off the shelf parts from years ago. I'd you machine every part on your bike cool. Keep it up. Randy builds stuff too. Good job man.

Commented on 11-14-2013 At 05:34 pm

I would build one. Looks cool as hell. I ride with hard tails and cafe bikes. Like them both. Nice bike.

Commented on 11-14-2013 At 07:05 pm

Rad machine, I personally really enjoy seeing different kinds of builds on here regardless of the degree of hand made or bolt on parts. A cool bike is a cool bike especially when someone puts it together for themself, not to sell or win shows

Commented on 11-15-2013 At 06:44 am

Looks fun to rip around on. However, some "details" I could see were fender/brake tabs on forks and stock lip on the clutch perch.

Commented on 11-15-2013 At 07:25 am

@sewerrob thanks man. Yea those details are all being addressed as weekend projects here and there. You def got me there. Too busy riding the damn thing haha.

Commented on 11-15-2013 At 10:25 am

Nice Bike Randy!! who cares what other people think!

Commented on 11-15-2013 At 01:26 pm

@ Incrediblah

But you still didn't show us anything to make your nasty opinion valid. My point is that you'd be psyched to see whatever you build as a feature, so why not give the dude his moment and just be happy that it isn't a feature on a stock ass factory built bike, etc. and also, that bike has been "Chopped" on, might not be a "Chopper", but this isn't "Chopper Cult" is it?

Commented on 11-16-2013 At 02:39 am

nice motorsickle , & can't we all just get a bong !?

Commented on 11-16-2013 At 03:42 am

Nice take on a cafe racer. Now back to working on wiring my bike so I can be ready for BornFree this summer.

Commented on 11-16-2013 At 06:32 pm

bwagner: Look dude, just hear me out, and read this like it was written by a normal person, and not like some shit kid with his internet muscles stirring up trouble for no reason.

Sorry, it was just an opinion. If you're posting something up where a million people can see it, you gotta figure not EVERYONE is going to like it. I've already said now that the bike is cool, this being the second time. Nobody was raggin' on the owner, demanding he go take a welding class, or asking him to prove that he can fab like a pro. Maybe he does have mad skillz, but that's not even remotely the point. I simply thought it was a weird choice for a feature. You generally see a bit more "love" put into a lot of the other feature bikes on here. The whole "validation" thing is a pretty weak argument dude. I never once implied that I could one-up the guy, nor would I ever care to. If you're so bent over it, I've got my own work up on here. Search away, or don't. Not gonna post it all over this feature just because you demand validation for every meaningless comment posted on the internet.

In closing... It's a cool bike Randy. In real life I would stop and look at it if I passed it on the street. If you were standing next to it, I would give you a high-five. I still think it's a surprising feature, and next time I'll be sure to add a positive with any negatives when I post, for the sensitive types out there (which oddly enough was someone other than you). Sheesh.

Commented on 11-16-2013 At 07:18 pm

great bike---narrow mindedness sucks--some folks need to get real and see things outside that teeny tiny keyhole of a mind

Commented on 11-16-2013 At 09:38 pm

Great bike. Kinda digging the cafe theme more and more. I just finished a fun little sporty build. nothing to crazy, few bolt ons, few custom made parts. but damn its fun to ride the shit out of and I did ALL the work myself, including paint, and it does feel good blasting down the road on it. thats all that matters. I like these features as much as the crazy one-off build features as well. cut anything off your bike and its a "CHOP" Ease on the neg comments.

Commented on 11-16-2013 At 10:45 pm

Looks good to me. My EVO project will have shocks. You don't see many EVO cafe bikes so...... All good for me. Plus if you don't like it.... Who cares?!?

Commented on 11-17-2013 At 11:03 am

Nice scoot, gives me some ideas for an EFI sporty build in the works. Sportys are great because you can do so much to them. Hardtail it into a chopper or cafe it, they're still Sportys and they rule. I like this one because I feel like its still a go fast bike. I'm pretty sure that's the intention of a daily rider in the city.

Commented on 11-17-2013 At 03:50 pm

So like Incrediblah said multiple times... Nothing against the builder Randy or the bike but this is supposed to be "chop" cult. And yes I realize that not all of us are builders and some can't even change the brake pads on their leased dyna's. But that's fine. I don't think anyone has said this bike is not super cool and I'm sure we would all stop and check the thing out with good things to say about it. But I do know that every time I get on Chop Cult I see adds for companies. Burly being one of the major advertisers. I have used burly products on a couple of project and think they are a top notch aftermarket supply. But I also know that in the last couple of months I have seen the "Burly Scrambler" and now the "Burly Café". With so many amazing builds out there and so many fresh ideas I find it strange that this bike is a feature also. And once again no offence to Randy the builder... but it sounds like he "built this thing to rip around on this summer while he worked on other projects". How about we wait for the other projects that he seems to be taking a bit more time on for a feature. I'm sure the guy is super talented but lets let some other talent have the spotlight in the mean time.

Commented on 11-18-2013 At 03:04 pm

I like it.

Commented on 11-18-2013 At 09:00 pm

Nice quick build. But i do agree that it is hardly feature worthy.

Commented on 11-18-2013 At 09:01 pm

Nice quick build. But i do agree that it is hardly feature worthy.

Commented on 11-19-2013 At 12:35 pm

"Commented on 11-14-2013 at 04:40 pm


Pretty sure randy can out ride most without a front brake. Also flat trackers don't have front brakes and they rip pretty hard"

Yes, On dirt tracks. And with a front Randy would be faster than he is without it. Anywhere else BESIDES a dirt track.

Commented on 11-19-2013 At 12:42 pm

OTOH, maybe the words custom, sensible, and practical don't really belong in the same sentence. But, that said, if budget and custom DO belong in the same sentence, then this is that bike. Or make up another:Budget custom daily driver :-)

Commented on 11-20-2013 At 08:35 am

Neg comments don't matter. I like it.

Commented on 11-20-2013 At 01:08 pm

Suggestion to Randy Horseman (and Burly!) re his "horse"

While i sincerely like the MSR bottle as a color accent (I do).. I've got another suggestion for increased fuel capacity on small tank Sporties: An O.I.F. kit plus
1 gal. reserve tank to replace the oilbag. Obviously some real R&D would be involved, but it seems to me that there's potential to sell a lot of kits…I'd sure as hell buy one BEFORE i bought something like a 48. Or built one.

Commented on 11-20-2013 At 01:10 pm

…I voted for the Burly Bolt as many time as I could

Commented on 11-20-2013 At 01:30 pm

…Not in least because Burly is committed to doing development work, i.e. kits.
So everybody else doesn't HAVE to re-invent the wheel, even if they have the ability-and facility- to do so.

Commented on 1-11-2014 At 06:58 pm

Love it...

Please Login to Comment


ADVERTISE    |    CONTACT    |    ©2009 - 2017 ChopCult    |    REPORT ABUSE    |    CONDUCT

Chopcult on Instagram Chopcult on Pinterest Chopcult on Tumblr Chopcult on Facebook Chopcult on Twitter