Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Home Grown Round III

This week it’s Chris Teeter. Chris is a super cool guy from Ontario Canada. I first met him @ R4YL 09 when he rode his Paughco framed evo sporty in solo from the great white north. We’ve ridden together a few times since then and it’s always a pleasure to hangout with Chris. This cat racks up some serous kilometers on this little rigid.

How long have you been riding motorcycles? On the street I have been legal for 7 years although I started riding dirt bikes when I was about 12 so I guess you could say about 25 yrs or so.
 Why choppers? Choppers are the ultimate personal expression of motorcycles. I got a stock 03’ 883R new in 04’ and rode it stock while doing some bolt on shit and had a blast with it. As I became more interested in bikes and seeing what was out there I also started doing as much maintenance on it as I could and slowly increased my skills. My bike was never really becoming what I wanted so I decided I would just have to get me a new frame and make it what I wanted. I would have to build a chopper. I had to build/fabricate as much as I could on my own and repurpose/use as many parts from my donor 883R. I felt that a chopper styled bike would be the best scenario for me, functional and ultimate style.
 Dream bike? Why? Dream bike is a tough one for me. I love my sporty and can’t see me getting rid of it anytime soon and the other reason is my Evo is super reliable and I am no engine guy so that is a big part of my choice of bikes but if I had to choose one it would probably be a nice original 70’s chop with a pan or slab shovel powering it. I think it would have a slightly stretched and raked frame and a nice medium length springer. I think it would also sport a nice molded alien tank. 

Describe your shop space My shop space is about 2/3 of a 2 car garage with the 1/3 being regular crap like bicycles and yard equipment and the what have you. I have about 12ft of bench space with a drill press, belt/disc sander/ couple o vices, a pedestal mounted bench grinder, a 110 V welder (that I use for small stuff and tacking bigger stuff), small band saw, bunch of peg board on the walls and a few big red boxes as well as a lathe that I just recently purchased. There is a lot of mess in there as well.
What’s the favorite tool you currently have? Easy, I just picked up an old 10F series Atlas lathe and I a super excited to have it, even though I am a complete noob when it comes to these things. It is a great tool and I really can’t wait to really put it to use.
What tool would you like to have the most? I really need to invest in a real welder. The lathe I just got was bought with the money I had been saving for a welder but I just couldn’t pass on it. I think I would like to get something like a Millermatic 180 or if cash allowed a diversion 165 but those are both way outta reach right now.

Last/best mc adventure? R4YL 09’! I had never done any distance riding other than maybe a 2hr ride on my bike before. I was supposed to ride from Ontario Canada (my home) and meet up with an internet acquaintance (that I had met from another forum) in Buffalo and ride with him to Joel’s place in Ada Ohio. When I got to Buffalo I got a message from my bud Nate that he was broken down in Syracuse and that he would not make it. So I decided right then and there that this would be a solo trip. I blasted down the highway to Ada and arrived to a welcoming party consisting of you, Joel, OBMF, TUSG, Jobe, and maybe a couple others that I can’t recall now. I had the most amazing time of my life hanging with everyone that I met that weekend that it has definitely become one of the most memorable events of my life that I will never ever forget. That trip ended up being about being about 1400 miles that weekend and it was amazing.
Form or function? Both. Cool is great but enjoying your bike to the fullest is also cool. When I have an idea for something I always try to make it as functional as possible while still maintaining a cool factor. If I can’t make a functional part look cool it usually does not end up on the bike until I can figure that out. I want my bike to kick ass while carrying me and my stuff. It has to work right for every occasion, short trips and long hauls. I also say wash your friggin’ bikes! It pisses me off when dudes let their bikes turn into crusty junk wagons. If you put so much time and effort into that 2 wheeled freedom machine than why would you not want it to be clean, besides if it is dirty and crusty you can’t find the oil leaks as easily.
 Will you ever consider riding a bagger. Why/why not? Yeah, but an old one (I guess you could say I want to ride an old bag, eww). 65’ fully dressed Electraglide to tour with the old lady on and even taking the kids on a trip would be neat and maybe even throw on a sidecar for a full family outing!
When it comes to building or customizing bikes, what’s the most important lesson you’ve learned? Don’t be afraid to ask someone for help if you just don’t get it or are not comfortable doing it yourself. People have already made all the mistakes out there so learn from those that fucked up before you. There are many things I am not capable of doing yet and I don’t have a problem asking someone who is more knowledgeable for help. Everyone that knows anything had to ask questions and fuck up some things so they could learn to do it right themselves.

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