The 1976 Shovelhead Chopper Side Gig
All side projects should look as cool as this Harley-Davidson Shovel
Before I even start to talk about this Shovelhead, built on the side, I have to first thank my good friend Justin Powers. He has taught and helped me with so much in the last few years. Without him this bike would probably still just be one of those never-ending works in progress.
Regarding the special features of this bike, I really don’t know what to say. Not one thing on this bike is groundbreaking, or is something that someone else couldn’t or hasn’t done. For the most part the overall bike just has that simplicity that speaks for itself. The “less is more” concept, I guess.
This bike was a total labor of love for me. I have always loved owning, working on, and riding motorcycles. I started this project with the goal of building a bike that was truly mine. My only intention was to build and enjoy a bike that I was proud to ride. I think that there is a driving force in all of us to create. The feelings and sense of accomplishment one can get out of starting with an idea and working hard to reach a goal is incredible. And for me that outlet came in the form of this bike. I came across this bike while on a fishing trip with a friend. It was owned by a friend of a friend that planned to rebuild it for himself, but had not touched it in years. It was really just a frame and a motor. He told me that he got it from the original owner and that the motor had not been run in many years. Needless to say, it would need to be gone through fully, and most likely completely rebuilt. After making a trade we were both happy with, the bike came home with me! By the next weekend I had the motor apart and slowly, weekend by weekend, I bought parts and began to put together the bike you see today because I just couldn’t help myself. The end result is the second version of this project. The first version was just the primer stage to ride it down the road.
Because working on, riding, and building bikes is something I really love, the hardest part is letting go of the bike so I can move on to the next one. Moving forward and making each bike “better” than the last is always going to be the biggest challenge.