Oldschool Looks. Made in Sweden.
This bike may have never been built, if our friend Henning from MCnytt hadn’t ask end of 2008 if we’d like to sign in for the 2009 Bike Builders Trophy, held at the Stockholm Mässan in January 2009. We anyway needed to do some promotion for NCCR, so we quickly made a concept for a project and got an ok to compete.
These Builder Trophies are in a way tricky, the visitors like to see people building a bike, you like to perform as professionally as possible under these in many ways limited conditions. Often the competitors choose the way to assemble the bike completely in advance at home in the workshop and give at the exhibition a kind of re-assembly show.
If that might have been an option we would’ve thought about it, but we were so absolutely limited in time that we simple couldn’t do that. I hate that idea of buying more than the absolute necessary to build a bike. We also had no budget for another showbike, as we just finished the Bad to the Bones project. So the big box and bag tear up, so often to see on these contests, was also no way to go.
Our friend Toby had an Harley Ironhead L.L.U Ratbike (Low, Loud and Ugly) that was screaming always out of the barn when I passed by: “RESCUE ME!“ It was one of this cheap Pandora buys, an import from Germany, too cheap to let it go, too ugly to ride it. Yes – and I carry since 20 years this brand new original Storz Aluminium Flattracker fuel tank with me, for the project what will show up one day. I was absolutely for a Caféracer, firstly because that’s what I wanted to build anyhow as one of the next projects, secondly because I don’t like to give Toby this Storztank…. But Toby did not like to ride a Caféracer on this bad Northern backroads here, and he’s my friend…. so (fuck) I gave this piece of history into the project. Around the tank we formed now the project of the Boulevardtracker. The idea was simple, we build a bike that everybody will love to own, that goes over any limitations of brand thinking, taste and state.
The bike will be our answer to the question, is there a kind of “worldbike”, is there a bike you must like? And if so, what would a bike look like that you ride over the fancy boulevards on a warm summer evening to take your coffee in a scene café, and will that bike then be a caféracer?
Even if it looks like a Flattracker?
Questions over questions and just before we were getting mad about this, Toby and me went to the workshop and started to build the parts. A big bonus point was, that Toby is an educated toolmaker and that gave us the speed we needed to finish the raw new parts in 7 night and day shifts.
The rest of the story is quickly told, we continued that speed for another week, rebuilt the engine (that was in super condition!) and prepared all last minute to leave in such a condition to Stockholm that let us to believe that there can be a bike after the 4 days.
There, a bit of filing, grinding and painting helped us over the problems showing up here and there… and in the end we finished second from five with a lack of 6 votes. Honestly, who cares ? (-:
I wrote this piece in 2009 when the Boulevardtracker was launched together with the Buell XB9 “Bad to the Bones”. See their video below: