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Pittsburgh-based body shop owner, Bill Steele, has mastered the art of custom paint and fabrication from stripped down shovelheads to this amazing bagger that started its life as a ‘06 Road Glide.

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Bill Steele is in the business of turning heads. This Pittsburgh-based body shop owner has mastered the art of custom paint and fabrication from stripped down shovelheads to this amazing bagger that started its life as a ‘06 Road Glide. This impressive custom dubbed “The Honey Bagger” owes its unique backend to a pair of 1941 Mercury sedan rear fenders, but the entire project hasn’t been sourced from the past — Steele’s incorporated an iPad into the dash and is plugged in with GaugeFace, which connects directly into the H-D data port.

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The bike earned its moniker from its distinctive paint job. Steele was inspired by the sweet caramel found in a Snickers bar, and you just might get a toothache admiring his work!

“It is my life. I’ve been painting so long that I don’t remember not painting,” says Steele.

Steele was educated in his craft at a vocational school, and his decades of experience show.  
While Steele isn’t looking to relocate to anytown USA to work for you (not even for a Snickers bar), it’s important to be able to offer your V-Twin customers custom paint work, even if it isn’t being fulfilled in your shop.

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Steele gets a steady stream of work from a pair of Harley dealers, as well as some local independent shops. If you don’t already have an established relationship with a custom painter, start your search at your local bike night — find the best work, chat up the bike owner and then go straight to the source!
In addition to having a custom painter of Steele’s caliber in your rolodex, offering in-house paint service for smaller jobs is a great value addition for your service department.

The PowerSport Institute now offers custom paint as part of its curriculum, and the school also has offered two- and three-day workshops that teach participants how to take on popular designs, including flames, skulls and pinstripes.

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If you’re interested in learning custom paint skills, there’s no time like the present. MPN has turned to our sister publication BodyShop Business for a simple walk-through of a pinstriping job courtesy of David “Hivoltz” Richards, a self-taught pinstriping artist. See examples of his work at www.pinheadlounge.com, and click here to check out his step-by-step guide to pinstriping.

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