Not Everything That Glitters is Gold . . .
But This Chopper Is

Story by Greg Friend
Photos by Greg Friend


Terry Lee from Peoria, Arizona, had a dream in the late 60's of making his living building custom motorcycles.

Unfortunately, the custom bike market was not where it is today, and he couldn't afford to live that way at the time.

Eventually, he chose another line of work. 30 years later, he picked up a copy of Street Chopper magazine, and it rekindled his passion for building customs.

This time, he wanted to build something that would satisfy his urges from the past, while incorporating styling cues and the technology of today.

The chopper he had in mind was long and low, a shape that would make other bike owners green with envy. Terry started out with a '01 Rolling Thunder 230 frame with a 5" stretch in the backbone and a 40-degree neck.

Bolted to the neck is a set of 5-degree RC Components triple-trees, and 6 inch over Perewitz forks with Race Tech internals.

Attached to the swingarm is a Legends Air suspension system that not only provides excellent cushioning, but also slams the bike to the ground when he's not riding.

A new frame needs to be mobilized, so the next items on Terry's list were wheels. Performance Machine has some quality components, and Terry liked the Trinity's style, so he picked up a 21-incher for the front with matching rotor and four-piston caliper. In the rear, he mounted a 15-inch Trinity with a GMA pulley/rotor combination and a GMA four piston caliper.

 

Terry envisioned his bike with a big-inch engine, so he called up TP Engineering and ordered a 107-incher. When the motor arrived, he added Edelbrock heads, a Crane cam, a Hi-4 ignition system, Martin Brothers' pipes, and a beefy looking Patrick Racing dual 42mm Mikuni setup. Relaying power to the Baker six-speed transmission is a Primo Brute III closed primary with a Rivera pro clutch.

With the motor in the frame, Terry went to town on the sheetmetal. He bought fenders from W.C.C. and modified them so much, they don't even resemble the original pieces. It looked like the struts flowed from the fender, and the Rolling Thunder oilbag was stretched to match the contours of the frame.

The Independent fuel tank was stretched as well and flows into the seat area, while the fender was shaped with wicked curves that show how custom the bike really is.

After spending so much time with the sheetmetal, Terry knew that he had to come up with a wild paint scheme to do all his hard work justice. First he tore the bike apart and molded the frame and sheetmetal, before laying down generous coats of Pagan Candy Gold. Once he was satisfied with the base coat, he had his friend, named Tony, tattoo the bike with blue tribal graphic on everything except the frame.

After the paint dried, he was anxious to get the bike on the road, and he furiously worked to finish the final assembly and bolt on the accessories of the machine.

Ness bars with Performance Machine hand controls were fastened to the triple trees above a Headwinds headlight. P.M. foot controls keep his feet off the ground and help him manage the bikes braking and gear shifting, while a High-End seat keeps him comfortable. Finally, a Paul Yaffe taillight indicates Terry's intentions while on the road.

Exhausted but excited, Terry wrenched on the last bolt before taking it on its' maiden run.

The custom turned out to be worth the three-decade wait. He still hasn't been able to wipe the smile off of his face. He was so happy with the way the bike turned out that he decided to try his hand out at bike building again.

His new shop is called Envy Cycle Creations.

streetchopperweb.com

SPECIFICATIONS FOR ENVY

GENERAL
Owner:
Terry Lee
Year/Make:
'01/Pro-Street Chopper
Fabrication:
Terry Lee
Assembly:
Terry Lee
Build Time:
Eight months
ENGINE
Size/Type:
107ci TP Engineering
Cases:
TP Engineering
Flywheels:
TP Engineering
Rods:
TP Engineering
Pistons:
TP Engineering
Cylinders:
TP Engineering
Heads:
Edelbrock
Cam:
Crane
Carb:
42mm Mikuni
Ignition:
Crane Hi-4
Pipes:
Martin Bros.
TRANSMISSION
Year/Type:
'01/Baker 6 Speed
Case:
Baker
Gears:
Baker Five-speed
Clutch:
Rivera Pro-Clutch
Primary Drive:
Primo BruteIII/Delkron Case
FRAME/SUSPENSION
Year/Type:
'01/Rolling Thunder Softail
Rake:
40 degrees
Stretch:
5 inches out
Swingarm:
Rolling Thunder
Rear Suspension:
Legend Air
Forks:
Perowitz/Race Tech
Extension:
6 inches
Triple Trees:
RC Components
WHEELS, TIRES, AND BRAKES
WHEELS
 
Front:
21-inch P.M.
Rear:
15-inch P.M.
TIRES
 
Front:
Avon
Rear:
Avon 230
BRAKES
 
Front:
P.M.
Rear:
G,M.A.
FINISH
Molding:
Terry Lee
Painter:
Terry Lee
Color:
Pagan Candy Gold
Graphics:
Tony
Chrome Plating & Polishing:
Concourse
Powdercoating:
N/A
ACCESSORIES
Bars:
Ness
Risers:
Built in
Hand Controls:
P.M.
Headlight:
Headwinds
Taillight:
Paul Yaffe
Gauges:
None
Electrical:
Terry Lee
Fuel Tank(s):
Modified Independent
Dash:
N/A
Oil Tank:
Rolling Thunder
Front Fender:
WCC
Rear Fender:
WCC
Fender Struts:
Terry Lee
Pegs:
P.M.
Foot Controls:
P.M.
Seat:
High End

 

 

"Best of Show"
2001
Trifecta Show

"Best of Show"
2001 Arizona Cyclefest
Custom Bike Show