Remember Russell Mitchell? There was a time when the talented British bike builder with the Technicolor epidermis dominated "fat and flat" with a ScotchBrite fist. The builder of this satin-smooth unit has taken Exile's dull finish to the next level, and that's just one of the things that make this unconventional cone shovel look great.
The Dutch gent who owns this heavily reworked Harley custom had a vision for his machine. The flat paint and satin surface treatments may look like Exile's best work, but it was actually the fab collective at Acme Choppers in New Hampshire who brought "The Vliegende Hollander" to life.
Seventy-two d.p.i. photos don't do justice to the perfection of the cases, rocker boxes, oil bag and tranny on this muted aluminum beauty. You need to see the Flying Dutchman up close to appreciate the work that went into every square inch of its undulating surfaces. I asked Acme owner Wayne Ahlquist how he achieves such uniformity, and he said it's easy. "We filed every crack, welded every hole, sanded every surface then mirror polished every part in-house until they shine like chrome. Then we used fresh ScotchBrite pads to create the dull sheen you see on the finished product. It's a pain in the ass, but it's the only way we can ensure all the different cast, CNC'ed and forged aluminum components get the same grain and weight in their swirls."
Only after taking a visual inventory of all the aluminum surfaces on this machine can you appreciate the time and effort that goes into Acme's process. It's repetitive and redundant, but the look speaks for itself.