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chopper, Pie Wagon

Ride of the Week

Custom-Built ‘Pie Wagon’ Chopper

When you’re a custom motorcycle builder and you’re asked to bring a bike to a show such as Born Free — you basically have to do it. You certainly wouldn’t say no. That was the case Don Miller, aka Donzzilla of Brackney, Pennsylvania, found himself in during fall 2019.

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Don owns and operates a t-shirt company called Metro Racing, and like his hero Ed Roth of Rat Fink fame, Don builds custom bikes to help sell his t-shirts. Born Free asked Donzzilla to build a bike in October 2019 in time for the show in June 2020.

The Pie Wagon

“I was full-on building the bike between running my t-shirt company, Metroracing.com, and everything else that was going on,” Miller says. “Then, on March 9, 2020, I had a major heart attack. I was a nap away from being gone. I got three stints put in. This bike was halfway done and had to be ready for Born Free in June 2020. I had an amazing amount of help from a bunch of people. I couldn’t do it by myself.”

Donzzilla’s buddies Eddie Jones, Glen Curtis and others stepped in to help get the bike ready. And thankfully, Don recovered from his heart attack. However, as we all know now, Born Free got pushed back to September 2020, which helped Don’s timeline, but then it got pushed into 2021.

“The bike was done though, so I’m glad we got to show it off this year,” Miller says.

The Motorcycle & Powersports News team recently spent time at the Fuel Cleveland motorcycle show and came across a number of awesome motorcycles, but few caught our eye like Donzzilla’s custom chopper named the Pie Wagon. The bike’s function and style were inspired by pizza and beer.

Convenient pizza “trunk”

“The bike does have kind of a theme, but it’s not too over-exaggerated,” he says. “It’s still sleek, smooth, classic, and timeless, but it’s all about pizza and beer and there isn’t much better.”

Don’s a man who likes to stop off and grab a pizza on the way home every now and then. If he’s on his motorcycle, the pizza had to balance on his lap, so in order to build a better mousetrap, so-to-speak, Don created a new chopper better suited for the job.

Fits plenty of beer too.

“Nobody wants cold pizza and warm beer, so I built this bike around a ZX750E Kawasaki motor,” he says. “I added the T25 turbo, the intake, the 40mm Weber carb, the custom exhaust, which sticks up, and I went with a Volkswagen distributor and a bunch of chrome aspects too. It’s just sleek, smooth, classic, and timeless. There’s nothing dated.”

When it came to paint color selection, Don and his wife Peg were all over the map, but the decision was obvious once they reached it.

“We couldn’t decide what color to paint it,” Miller says. “We were red. We were this. We were that. Then, Peg said, ‘You’ve got to paint it to look like beer.’ I grew up in the ‘70s as a custom van painter. It’s a fairly common ‘70s custom paint trick to put water bubbles on there. I went to my buddy Eddie Jones’ place and laid it all out with the water drops and we got a candy beer paint scheme.”

If you’re standing 10 feet back from the bike or more, the paint looks like a nice gold, but when you get up close, there are tons of details to take in on the paint job itself and elsewhere on the trike such as the rear tires, which literally say “Get it while it’s hot.”

Moving to the front end, Don chose to use a Harman Spirder fork, which is a combination girder and springer setup. The handlebars have an incorporated throttle with no clutch – it has a centrifugal clutch in it – so there’s no clutch cable and no levers.

“Everything is smooth and sleek, and I have a tiny suicide shifter mated to a 6-speed, so you can shift easy and go,” he says. “The whole idea was just to be smooth and clean. We even made the seat snow white leather to look like foam on a beer. My buddy Gary Maucher is an amazing auto upholstery guy in Philadelphia. I took the bike to him in primer and told him I needed a white seat, and this is what happened.”

You might be wondering how the bike handles and goes down the road? Well, Don admits ‘it’s not terrible,’ but the bike wasn’t intended to be ridden extensively.

“The bike is flexible, but it can be kind of scary because it’s really snappy,” he says. “If you give it gas it takes off, but it was built as a true show bike. I kind of kid that it’s a priceless paperweight, but it’s still really cool. It attracts a ton of attention, and it gets us to places like this (Fuel Cleveland), so other people can enjoy it and that’s what it’s all about.”

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And how can you not love a custom chopper devoted to pizza and beer? Check out the photo gallery below for more pics!

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

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