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Doc, I live in the bush and have decided to build my own chopper or bobber. Can you recommend any books or DVDs that might help? I’m handy with a spanner, at least on tractors and farm equipment, so I don’t think I’ll encounter too many problems. I have access to a small lathe and mill plus a wide range of tools. But I figure that a bike is a fair bit different and suppose I should hunt down all I can on doing a build.

– Dave

You know Dave, I always have mixed feelings about this sort of question. We’re not allowed to wire our houses up if we aren’t qualified electricians, we can’t do our own plumbing or repair gas leaks should they exist. But anyone can build a motorcycle and get it registered. Yet a motorcycle is a weapon that can go down the road at 100mph and can kill the rider or perhaps anyone he or she hits, should something go wrong. And let me tell you, I’ve seen some bloody awful things go wrong on amateur-built bikes over the years. And it is one thing if you kill yourself through faulty building, but quite another when the next owner dies because of your incompetence.

Right, that’s one side of my feelings on home building – the side that wants me to tell you to go to a reputable shop and get it professionally built. One the other hand, I like to encourage resourcefulness and have seen some superb builds done by first-timers over the years.

I figure you will go ahead anyway so it is best I offer you some advice. I can recommend three books by my buddy Timothy Remus, the first being How to Build the Ultimate V-Twin Motorcycle, the second How to Build a Chopper, and the third is How to Build a Cheap Chopper. Check out and also Google them.

My copy of How to Build a Chopper cost me a whopping one cent plus postage, so you won’t be breaking the bank. Also there is a gun website packed with the info you need called and most of it is free.

The cool Shovel you see (top right, previous page) was built by a fellow bushie, Neil Merchant, whose other cool rigid, Twist of Fate, we featured in our last issue.

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