Impressed. That is the best way to describe the diners and wait staff at Apocalypse Gold's last Saturday afternoon. Apocalypse Gold is the regular weekend lunch hangout for the Icon Garage Team. After a hard morning of bike building we like to relax with some awesome Mexican food. And then Grant decided to ruin everything. 800 pounds of Road King Ultra Super Duper Glide roasting a Metzler all over the restaurant's front door - leaving behind the job of sweeping up the rubber debris - yeah, 'Impressed' is definitely the word that comes to mind.
What do get when you cross huge sums of horsepower with swiss watch reliability? We're not sure, but it definitely isn't Cold Dead Fingers. Fingers is more like an unholy mashup between early Lynrd Skynrd, a Taurus® Judge™ and a aluminum bass boat. You know - not that much power, not very comfortable, and of questionable practicality - but she can catch, clean & cook a mean catfish. Yeah, Fingers is a lot like that. She's powered by the high water mark of HD engineering - the 1972 Ironhead Sportster. A kick only, right hand shift, 1000cc double-lunged homage to the American dream. Equally at home on a post-war interstate or blue groove oval, she defies petty classifications. Upgraded to period correct competition standards - R6 forks, Kawi wheels, unknown rotor and the finest Kenda meats $60 will buy - she stands ready to enact the mercy rule on any would be doubters. Straight from an era defined by easy love, greasy locks, and piles of blow - you're welcome to take her for a ride if you can pry her from our Cold Dead Fingers.
Fingers in all her purple mountain majesty
Dare we say that her left side profile is the better angle?
If she ever gets lost, just place her in any mailbox and we will cover the return shipping
Still a damned fact...
Hey - Chopper Dave how about making an aircleaner that us Mikuni user can rock?
We've come a long way since making motorcycle noise while riding our Mongoose (actually we haven't)
Pirelli dreams - Kenda budget, the story of our lives
Icon <3 Ironheads
Fingers going through a racer and a greaser phase - luckily she grew out of both
Initial sharpie tank graphics and the more refined finished product
She wanted me dead, that was clear. I could come up with no other reasoning for why she conducted herself in such a hostile manner. With her carbon cans barking like a tortured lap dog the Snakecharmer was hellbound on delivering pain. And not the kind of pain that you just walk off. No, she wanted to deliver the kind of pain that burns for weeks. Where every shower is a constant reminder of your failures. The kind of pain that forces you to sleep on your stomach eschewing blanket or even sheet. The type of pain that your wife not only doesn't care about, but actively mocks. And who could blame her? She was a bike built for a different age. An age before drug resistant infections and air quality standards.
Powered by the finest premix technology a 1979 Yamaha corporation had to offer, she was both reckless and beautiful. A homogenized concoction of 400cc bits from the entire Hamamatsu product line. RD400 top, XS400 front, YZ400 rear, IT400 middle. Much like Cher, she was an intoxicating half-breed. The result of an ill-conceived tryst between a street racing father and hare & hound mother. She was in two words - a Dirty Cafe. With a 'choose your own adventure' illustration for a paint job she would rule the gravel strewn grounds of the Portland Container Yards. Spewing both rock and fuel in an unfettered rage against the injustice of all things pure. She was both magic and magician. And then, without fanfare or ballyhoo, she sputtered and died. No dramatic fireball, no gasping seizure of piston or rod - just the slightest of backfires and then silence. Some say it was a fouled plug, others, that she was just too beautiful to live. Whatever the reason, the Charmer's flailing heart had finally stopped. Her dirt encrusted carapace is now enshrined amongst the rafters of the Slabtown whisketeria, where she looks down longingly on the drunken patrons. Even in her misted cylinder sleep she appears tense and brooding. The Snakecharmer was handsome killer - plain and simple.
Pure hipster horseshit
The inspiration and the reality - the Snakecharmer in all her stock glory
Stage one featured the 'Elderly Statesman' handlebar bend
Looking sassy by the dumpsters
Bondo, oil paint, and rattlecan - the graphic badges of a Container Yard Vet
A bike isn't truly a bike until it gets a number - The Snakecharmer got #42
"If you choose to battle the fierce serpent turn to pg. 68"
"If you choose to flee the writhing beast turn to pg.24"
We live motorcycles - not labels. Some think it odd - the eclectic hoard of Crotch Rockets, Sportys, and broke-ass Yamahondas. Icon is an enlightened look into the future. A fun ride of heavy-wristed abuse and irreverent attitude. We have never felt the need to discriminate over displacement, cylinder configuration, or country of origin. The bikes of Icon are crafted with a unique methodology: creation of the new from the ashes of the rashed.
The current batch of Icon customs are based on our fondness for the dirt oval. And for choppers. And for cafe racers. All of these genres are conscripted into our ranks. Enter Cold Dead Fingers, Anemic, The Snakecharmer, and both lastly and leastly, The Kitten. Armed with large knobbed tires we sent this batch of air-cooled combatants to war in the gravel strewn outskirts of North Portland. A zesty enterprise of gas spewing tanks and dust choked nostrils. A course dictated by rusty containers and disgruntled longshoremen, backlit by a blistering August sun. An event that would eventually become known as the Container Yard Classic. No one would survive alive.
Deep in the heart of NE Portland the battle rages - Team Icon vs. The Bikes of Icon
Straight off the mean streets of Hamburg, Germany comes Icon's newest team member - Mai-Lin Shi. Weird name for a fraulein you say? Destined to be bigger than the Hoff, Mai-Lin is touring the European countryside in her pink box van rep'in Icon and thrilling all the locals. Welcome to the Icon team!
Mai-Lin's milchshake brings all the jungen to the yard.
Mai-Lin and her hero, JB, in Portland during the Icon '10 Fall catalog shoot.
Mai-Lin's "Speed Queen" spread in the Icon 2010 Fall Collection ROP.
"Now is the time on Sprockets when we dance!"
Some crushed-in stunt tanks are luckier than others
There are some people that you find in your travels that are serious about motorcycles, and then there are people that take it to a another level. Such as those involved in the 2010 Cannonball Run. Follow the progress here.
The Rambler - survived over 100 years only to serve out it's remaining days in cubical land. She will not be competing in the Cannonball but will join you for a cigarette at the 3pm coffee break.
Single Cylinder stressed member that puts out 3/4 of a horse
Hey! Remember that really coolEyeball helmet that everyone wanted a piece of? It's for sale by it's owner and painter Jason at Garage 31. Dust off the credit card, head over to Ebay, and get to bidding. Jason will be donating all proceeds to a former employee of Icon who had a nasty get off a few weeks back.
There are lots of great things about the interweb. Free porn for example. Actually free porn and an endless supply of motorcycle info. Neither of which are actually needed - but both of which are ravenously consumed. The latest in this stream of digitus is the CBR250F1 Hurricane. Ever hear of it? We hadn't. Which is odd, given that we consider ourselves to be quite well versed in all things Honda Hurricane. She's an odd little beast - sporting Hurricane fender and wheels but exhibiting a distinctly first gen Ninja 600 vibe in the styling department. Perhaps the Minicane is the result of an illicit tryst between Honda and Kawi? An illegitimate offspring deemed too embarrassing and runt-like to release to the American public? Of course this is pure speculation on our part - but unless Honda comes on this blog to publicly deny our claims than we will consider their lack of response as tacit confirmation. Which brings up the other great thing about the internet....lies! it's all lies!
Date night turned into deer night. I had just dropped a girl off from a nice evening ride to a classy sit down dinner and a little waterfall trip. It was about 930 at night, on a country road that I am familiar with; twisty and turny and ordinarily fun to ride on. I was crusiing along and came up on a moderate 90 degree turn that I have taken before, I go in at about 35mph, I come out of the turn, and there stands a huge deer right in front of me. I swerved to miss the deer......successfully. However, my rear tire caught the edge of a ditch and dropped down in it, taking the rest of the bike, and myself with it. The bike went in the ditch upright, and managed to come out of it upright, only problem was that it went up a 6 foot tall embankment which now had become my ramp. The bike and I launched off the embankment, flipped twice end over end, slid about 20 feet together, then I was tossed another 20 feet where I proceeded to land head first and face down on a dirt and gravel path. My bike was essentially torn in half, I was lucky to have missed the barb-wire fence and trees that lined the road. When I landed on my head, knowing I had my Icon helemet on was the only comfort I had.