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Ride of the Week

Custom 1966 Harley-Davidson Shovelhead

You can argue that custom motorcycles are often more art than function, especially when you’re looking at bikes done by folks who have been at it a long time. They’re constantly upping their game with every build they do. Take Hawke Lawshe, for instance. The man behind Vintage Technologies was recently featured in our Ride of the Week series thanks to his custom motorcycle named Azureous. At the time, we weren’t sure if anything could stand out as much as Azureous did, but we were wrong.

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Another custom build of his, named Pure Nastyness, just might take the cake. Each bike was seen at Mama Tried and each is a testament to Lawshe’s ability to create truly amazing motorcycles. This one, however, is a tribute to the late Arlen Ness, one of the most famous American motorcycle designers in the industry, so you know the build had to be good!

“I like to build bikes like an onion, the more you dig through the layers the more you’ll find,” Lawshe says. “Some of the neck components in the frame were actually the original blanks from the ‘70s parts. I narrowed the chassis up a little bit to try to compliment the digger/drag bike theme that I was going for. It’s kind of a melting pot of two styles – they’re both fast and low, but one isn’t shiny, so I blended them together and this is what we came up with.”

The heart of the bike is a 1966 Harley-Davidson Generator Shovelhead engine. Lawshe decided to swap the front and rear cylinders and then spun them 180 degrees, so that all the intake and exhaust charge come out the left side of the bike.

“It gave me the ability to balance the camshaft side and the B-side and give it a little bit of depth to both sides,” Lawshe says. “I did that basically to just fill that side of the bike up. When you look at it from a rear view, you can kind of see it’s more symmetrical that way instead of just everything hanging off it, and it balanced the bike out a lot more.”

For the engine setup, Lawshe chose to use rare nitromethane drag racing cylinders from the late ‘60s with an exposed rocker box system. It also features a Rotrex centrifugal supercharger off of a SeaDoo jet ski and a Super B S&S carburetor, which was one of the first original hot rod parts for this era of bikes.

Aside from the Harley-based engine, you can’t help but notice the bike is absolutely drenched in gold. From the paint to aspects of the Borrani high-shoulder wheels to the chains and more, gold adorns this bike from head to toe.

“I weld all my chain links together, so for these gold chains I did it here too in order to get rid of all the rivets and pins,” he says. “This gold set is probably my favorite so far. I make little figure eights with the welder and I sculpt and polish them after. I also custom made the wheel hubs themselves. These are original Haul-Crafts that I’ve narrowed. I converted the back one to an actual drum brake system.”

While Pure Nastyness is a tribute to a legendary bike builder, Hawke stresses that he builds his bikes for everyone to enjoy.

“I make my bikes to help get someone hooked,” Lawshe says. “I want to make sure they stop and check it out.”

If you have a motorcycle, ATV, UTV, snowmobile or jet ski you’d like to feature in MPN’s Ride of the Week series, please email MPN Content Director Greg Jones at [email protected]

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