Dropped my XS650 frame off with Lee Hamilton of HamBone Customs in Martensville yesterday and had a great chat about all his work and bike building culture crap here on the prairies. Lee runs a small, but effective shop outta his garage where he's got everything he needs for the daily grind.
I met Lee at the Cruise Weekend show this summer where he was showing off a couple bikes and some tanks he'd built. HamBone has been building bikes for a while now. Ever since Lee couldn't find a buyer for the $900 Suzuki 750 he was riding and decided to cut the sucker up instead of dropping the price. Turns out building a fucking cool custom bike was a better alternative to buying a slightly cooler stock one.
Three Suzuki's later and Lee's designs are getting slicker with each job.
I asked Lee what he liked about cutting up the inline four suzuki's and he said they just keep finding their way into his garage. The last one was given to him at zero dollars and well... who can say no to a free donor bike? (retorical question. obviously, no sane person can say no to a free motorcycle). With a good eye for composition and great detail pieces Lee could probably make pretty much any box of bike bits look badass.
Besides the suzuki's HamBone has built a Harley rigid frame from scratch (just cuz) and done some nice tanks, tank alterations, and seat pans as well as all the bits and bobs like pegs, bars, and suicide shifters that Lee insists on with every bike. I must admit I love to look of clean handlebars with only a throttle cable hanging down.
Can't wait to see what Lee does with my Yammy frame, but I'm feeling pretty confident that it's gonna get me well on my way to having a one of a kind badass ride. Lee made one promise, that no one else on the road would have anything like it. Perfect.
Thanks, Lee, for the tour, talk, and for taking my frame on as a project in your obviously busy shop. Can't wait to see the progress.
I've also invited Lee to be a contributor to the Antiquated Mule so keep an eye out for his project updates on this and many other bike and bits builds.