1999 Harley-Davidson Sportster | Exchange special

Words: Arev Norhadian, Photos: John Zamora, Model: Elena Romanova

Guess it all started when I was in high school and got my first off-road bike, a YZ250 from 1986. I jumped on this bad boy in front of my boyfriend’s house and grabbed a throttle grip and he straightened up and almost threw me on the ground. I was in love! I grew up around custom cars and after building some of my own I thought why not give a motorcycle a try? I knew he had to be light, fast and able to stop. I started doing some research and decided to go with a Sportster. I hit the old man and explained my plan to him and asked him if he knew of a salvage yard in Long Beach, California. The next day, we got there and found about 15 wreck sportsmen to choose from. I found a ’99 1200 that looked like someone just lay down in the mud. I took it home and the forks have been altered a bit, but not bent. I straightened them up, turned it on, and took it for a quick ride around the block. Everything looked good and everything went well. It wasn’t as fast as I thought a 1200 would be, but I figured we could fix this later. I took this whole bike apart in just a few hours. I put all the junk I didn’t need in a corner to sell or trade.

1999 harley-davidson sportster chopper

1999 Harley-Davidson Sportster | Exchange special

Words: Arev Norhadian, Photos: John Zamora, Model: Elena Romanova

1999 harley-davidson sportster chopper

1999 Harley-Davidson Sportster | Exchange special

Words: Arev Norhadian, Photos: John Zamora, Model: Elena Romanova

The following Sunday I was going to the So-Cal Cycle Swap meet for all the other parts I needed. It was there that I met Anthony from Chassis Design. He had exhibited some of his works and they all looked like real quality pieces. so I had him build a frame to my specifications. It has 33 degrees of rake, a 2 and 3 inch stretch, and a slightly sagging seat for the seat to flow into the frame. He also built me ​​the oil bag, the battery box and the triple shafts. It needed wheels so I called my boys over at Ride Wright Wheels and asked them to build me a 21 inch for the front and 16 for the rear. Now I myself had a roll.

1999 harley-davidson sportster chopper

1999 Harley-Davidson Sportster | Exchange special

Words: Arev Norhadian, Photos: John Zamora, Model: Elena Romanova

I needed a clean weld and build so I called Jeff from Delisle Products and he welded the Brembo brakes on my reservoir and fender. We both did a little bit of spacing and line everything up. Once we got it all done up, it was time to pull it apart for powder coating, painting, and polishing. I met my boy Jason Langhoff at Deluxe Powder Coating and we had a late night throwing in cans of alcohol and a lot of powder coating and polishing. Putting the bike together and watching it take shape was like being a kid in a candy store. I shaved the forks and put 2 springs under to give it this low position. The tank and fender are black with candy red on silver metal flakes. I met this guy from Chilin’s Pinstriping who striped at a local auto show.

1999 harley-davidson sportster chopper

1999 Harley-Davidson Sportster | Exchange special

Words: Arev Norhadian, Photos: John Zamora, Model: Elena Romanova

I put the bike together and wanted to get a little more power out of it, so I ordered Buell heads, pistons and cylinders, Andrews n8 cams, a Mikuni carburetor and all the other accessories that come with it. I took it all to Cycle Doctor in Costa Mesa, Calif. To build the motor and Steve Kinney really nailed it and made this bike run like a top. I was at the local rodeo and met Mike from Mike’s Custom Leather and his job was amazing. He told me that he had never ridden a motorcycle, but that he would love to give it a try. I was really happy with the way it came out. I’ve never driven a hardtail and thought it would ride like a caddy, but it actually has a really smooth ride and with all the Buell parts and goodies, works like a bat out of it. ‘hell. The best part about riding this bike is that it feels like you are riding something that you should be. It is unlike anything you would buy in the showroom.

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