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Want to know about motorcycle kits? Step by step is as good a way as any....

If you are interested in the facts when it comes to motorcycle kits...

motorcycle kits

....from chopper kits and kit bikes or just custom motorcycle building in general , this article will try to address the questions most people ask when considering which motorcycle kits are the best to look for.

Everything on this page will help you make a good decision when purchasing custom chopper kits, kit bikes, custom motorcycle parts or having custom bike kits built for you. It will also walk you through the process of building bikes from motorcycle kits and tell you about some of the resources that can help you fulfill your dream.

Do I have the tools to make the job easy?

If you want to build a motorcycle kit you need the right tools. Sounds obvious, and when you review most motorcycle kits, they will tell you that a standard tool kit is all that is needed to make motorcycles from kits. That is true, but the operative word is easy. Putting a motorcycle kit together can be difficult but its a lot more difficult if you are doing it at ground level. I'm not suggesting you go out and buy a special lift, only you can decide if its a worthwhile investment. But, and its a big but, you are planning on spending eighteen thousand dollars or so on a motorcycle kit; a lift that will make your working environment so much more comfortable will set you back about five hundred. Think about it.

Apart from a lift, the only other investment you need is to clear your garage and make sure that space is dedicated to the time you want to devote to put your motorcycle kits together. You wont be able to do this thing with a car taking up all the space when you need access all around the bike. If you look at any of the books and videos available on the subject, or watch the Discovery programmes like "The Great Biker Build Off" you'll see that these guys make motorcycles in a pretty spacious shop (granted they are not putting together motorcycle kits, but who wouldn't kill for a shop like that?). Yours doesn't have to be like that but make sure you have got room. Or maybe you know somebody who has; it shouldn't take months to put the beast together whatever kit you buy.Oh, and be prepared to read the instructions. Several times over......

Can I really build a motorycle from kit bikes and chopper kits ? How complete are they?

You are about to spend a big chunk of money on an unassembled custom kit bike or chopper kit. Hopefully, if you make the right choice for your supplier ( and I make some recommendations at the end of the article), what you see in the pictures is what you get (not including paint). Most motorcycle kits tend to be extremely complete, right down to the motor oil. However some custom bike kits will need a few upgrades. Keep in mind that most of these kits were not designed to pass inspections in every state.For example; in order to pass your state inspection requirements, some will need baffles for pipes, turn signals, speedometers, etc. Most of these kits come with all these items but a few don’t. The only way to be sure what is included is to READ EACH KIT BIKE PAGE FOR THE FULL DETAILS.If you are not sure, ASK. Common upgrades on kits are batteries, air cleaners and speedos. But make sure you do plenty of research as to what exactly goes into a kit before you hand over any money

Can I mix, match or swap out parts?

In most cases its impossible to swap parts around in a kit. They generally come packaged up on a pallet, which makes it very difficult for suppliers to mix and match from what are essentially different kits.

Can I build one of these kit bikes or chopper kits and what are the instructions like?

A lot of this thing is confidence; you probably don't work at Harley Davidson, so you don't go to work and make motorcycles all day. This is new to you and like all new things, you need to build up your confidence. I can recommend a couple of resources. Firstly there are any number of good bike building books out there; I have picked out a few for you to look at towards the end of this article. Second, there are some great DVD's that shows step by step the assembly of motorcycle kits. Reading and watching these will give you the confidence you need to take the plunge. As far as the kit goes, the motor is likely to come assembled, the carb is most likely on it, the transmission will be put together, the tires wont be mounted on the rims, the electrics will probably come with their own instructions. Very few special tools are needed for bike kits. However, if you are in any doubt whatsoever,I reccommend that a qualified mechanic put your kit together, or at least someone who has a working knowledge of the basics of bike mechanics: your life could fdepend on it! That being said, if you know the difference between a socket wrench and an adjustable screw driver you can probably get a kit bike or custom chopper together with a little common sense and sweat. For those of you who still have some doubts,just ask the kit suppliers just how easy it is.
motorcycle kits

Better yet, ask for the names of some of their recent customers who have taken the plunge. If they are serious about their work, they will probably have a list of references for you.

Is my kit bike a good investment? Instead of trying to make motorcycles why dont I go and buy a factory bike and dress it up?

Here is a complaint that is becoming more and more common (unfortunately). You go out and spend $18,000 plus on a new “stock” Harley.You start reading the bike magazines, and you decide the "look" of you bike isnt quite right. You head back to the dealer and start loading up on all the "little extras" that make your bike just how you want it. But all these little extras, purchased without exception at full list price because the dealer won't give you a break, soon add up. By the time you have “dressed up” your new bike you can be $25,000.00 to $30,000.00 out of pocket. Now Harleys do still hold their price, but not as well as they used to. Why? Because everyone's buying them, thats why! But if you decide to make motorcycles from kits, thats a different matter. There are so few of these kit bikes and custom choppers around, plus they are so accessorized out with big fat tires, big fat engines, custom frames and sheet metal, your motorcycle will stand out in a crowd. There a people out there who are actually making money like this; they make motorcycles, maybe 3 or 4 a year, from kits, and sell them on at a profit! So making your own bike from a kit will probably be as good a way to spend your money as any. At worst it will be a comparable investment. There is of course one big variable in this - YOU! If you are enthusiastic about the job, and not afraid to ask for help if you need it, the project will run pretty smoothly . If you make motorcycles like I dig the garden (thats like I can't be bothered) your bike may not be worth what you thought at the end of the project.

What about painting?

If you want to make motorcycles from kits, you will have to get it painted. But isn't that the general idea? If you went out and bought a new Harley, to get any level of customisation you would have to get a custom paint job. Same thing with a kit. If you get the bike built, the builders will probably quote you for the painting. They will porbably quote for one-color powder coat on the frame and one-color paint for the sheet metal. The main thing is that you should get your bike the way you want it , after all you are spending a lot of money on it.

What about titling?

When it comes to your actual inspection or formal titling for your kit bikes it will be your responsibility to get your finished bike inspected or titled in your home state. The kit suppliers and custom builders will help you all they can in this regard.

Great! where do I buy my kit?

You can do a couple of things. Check out the custom bike magazines like Easyrider or V twin. They will have adverts for custom kit bikes that you can check out. Second you can google "motorcycle kits" and see what comes up. A good starting point on the road to make motorcycles are the links I have included below. I have selected these sites for their information content on the "how to's of building. I particularly like the The Hog Farm , because they detail a motorcycle kit project from start to finish that was written up by Easyrider and V twin magazines
Another great site is Steel Thunder Custom Cycles , who have a great website stuffed with products and information on building a custom chopper and motorcycle kits in general.

I'm still not sure....

Oh, you big baby! O.K., then try this software package that lets you design and build your very own "virtual" custom chopper!

And when you have played about on that for a bit, check out some "how to make motorcycles" dvds . Then all you have to do is get revved up , get on the phone or online, and get goin'! For more information try this related article on motorcycle kits resources. And for your entertainment and enjoyment here is another article on what it takes to become a professional motorcycle kits builder.

Oh,and enjoy the journey!

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