Sunday at Born Free 6 was a lot more laid back for me personally. My friend Walter from Kickstart gave me a press pass and told me to come super early on the second day to shoot the invited builder's bikes before the crowd rushed in. I remember waking up super early that morning, excited like it was Christmas Day or something; I looked out the window and got pretty bummed. It looked like it was going to rain really hard, gloomy, and not looking like it was going to be a good day. Then I remembered I was in California, where every day has this weird overcast till about 10 or 11am sometimes even longer. It was an interesting ride by myself to the grounds, a bit chilly and that overwhelming feeling like I was about to get poured on by the biggest storm. Even though I knew it was just the dumb overcast. As I pulled up to the gate, I flashed my fancy press pass. They let me in the gates as if I belonged and I went straight to work.
Matt Walksler from Wheels Through Time. He built this 1942 Indian Chief that had not one flaw, extremely beautiful and super bold stylization.
The craftsmanship, details, and hard work that went into all of the invited builder bikes was absolutely out of this world. I could only imagine the time and care that went into every single bike. Each and every single guy that was invited last year put forth some of the most innovative techniques and skills together to create stuff no one has ever seen and yet completely functional and they looked like real bikes that anyone normal person could ride. It blows my mind still to this very day to see there are endless possibilities when it comes to the way a motorcycle can look and function. I feel like with cars you can't get that unless you had a million dollar team working round the clock to make something new. Here it can be one, two, or even three friends in a backyard garage and they can create a masterpiece out of sheet metal, two wheels and an old tractor motor. It's insane to me to even think about this as I am writing it now.
Tom Fugle built one of the coolest Panheads to ever exist. I don't even know where to even begin, from how beautiful the fame molding is all the way to the gas tank, all filled with trippy metallic one of a kind colors. It's an instant classic that will be forever known.
It was so nice to actually be able to sit there and stare at all the invited builder's bikes without a million arms, butts, and legs in the way of your view and shot. I just can't say enough when it comes to how much every single bike blew my mind. It was also super fun dreaming about winning one and which one I would have chosen if I had actually won. The guy that did win the previous day did make an excellent choice on Ryan Mullion's Triumph Trike. It's so clean and looks like a ton of fun to rip around.
Oliver Jones from The Cut Rate made this 1980 Shovelhead look like it belonged some where in the future. Brilliant in every single way.
After the sun finally came out I took a few more pictures of the over all show but I really just drank in the whole atmosphere. I wanted to have a few memories for myself as selfish as that sounds. Born Free is so large it is absolutely impossible to see everything in one day let alone two. I feel it is even more impossible to find people. My wife Kat and I played the telephone game to different vendor booths as we lost each other countless times. “Hey Mikey, Kat is over at the Biltwell booth” , I would go there and then they would tell me “Oh she said she was going to the VNM table.” This went on for a long pretty long time. With no cell phone service, it got to be quite annoying but in the end I look back at it now and it is pretty funny. I met a ton of great people and got to see a ton of friends I have met over the years. Over all it was a pretty perfect second day.
Kouske Saito from Sunrise Cycles built this all original 1936 Knuckle head. I heard every piece he hunted down to make it as original as possible and then fabricated it the way he wanted. It was well deserved win, he took first place at Born Free 6 last year. This bike is just perfect in every single way.
Brandon Casquilho from Mullins Chain Drive, absolutely killed it with this 1967 Generator Shovel. There is so much going on with this bike it's hard to take it all in at the same time. I think I went back to this bike a few different times.
Paul Cox and his 1977 HD insane open Rocker Shovel. Extremely talented artist and builder. -Paul Cox Industries
Scott "T Bone" Jones from Noise Cycles got his hands on a 120R motor from Harley and built one amazing machine!!
Larry Pierce's last build, The Larry Special '48 UL. - Never Forget Larry Pierce. #NFLP
Jason Sheets' 1958 Panhead with single down tube frame. I think this would of been the bike I would have chosen if I had the golden ticket. It's just so clean, so well done and really my style of chopper/lane splitter. Maybe one day he will let me buy it off him ahaha.
Gaku Yokomizo from Hawgholic built this 1967 Shovelhead with Gold plated rockers! Have you ever seen that before? Nope! The paint was absolutely killer on this bike too! Always cool to see what the guys across the Pacific have up their sleeves when it comes to bike building.
Caleb Owens from Cro Customs and his American as all hell 1966 Generator Shovelhead. Just punk rock and in your face good!
Mike Neilsen "The Show Class People's Champ" with his 1952 Panhead. This is how a chopper should be, classy in every way.
Bryan Thompson built this 1952 Triumph Thunderbird to the T. Incredibly clean and looks like it came off the assembly line in 1952.
Go Takamine built this S&S Knuckle with his signature Brat Style.
Wes White from Four Aces made this sick Triumph Racer. Looks fast with out even moving!
Todd Asin Built this 47 knuckle which was later in the day given away to one lucky winner.
Bobby "The Leg" Middleton from King Kustoms rode his Shovelhead build all the way across the country for Born Free 6 and it still looked this clean!!! Absolutely killer bike.
Pete Mason and his 1962 Panhead build. Loved the tank molding and the clean lines this bike had.
Brad and Ry from Zen of Neto built the Papa Glide with extreme engineering and innovation. 1958 Pan Shovel with a shifter no one else will ever have. Yes it works!
Jason Phares built this 1980 Shovelhead race bike. This thing looks like so much fun!!!!
Trent Schara from Atomic Customs with this 1964 Pan/Shovelhead. So much style!
My Good Friend Jesse Basset from The Gasbox and his 1944 Knuckle head build. His simple lines and perfect proportions always makes you ask yourself "What year is this bike?" Timeless.
Joey Cano from Slabside built this 1940 UL Chopper. Sooo good!
Matt Olsen and his 1928 Harley JD. Super rare motor and done so well!! I had to ask myself which side I liked better a few times. They are both so good.
Nick Miserendino from War Gasser and his beautiful swing arm 1977 Shovelhead.
Kevin "Teach" Bass with an extremely clean 1940 ULH.
Ryan Mullion from the Tiger Shack, One of my favorite bikes at the show. A Pre-Unit Triumph trike with style for miles!! Ryan built something to remember with this one and the golden ticket winner from the previous day chose to take her home. Lucky!!
If you didn't get to Born Free 6 last year you messed up!!! Make sure to get to this years Born Free, I promise you won't regret it. See you there!!
For More info on the show go to www.bornfreeshow.com
All Photos and words by - Mikey Revolt