You’ve heard it all before – blondes have more fun, brunettes are the ones you’d bring home to meet the folks, bla bla bla. Redheads, on the other hand, are the ones you have to look out for. Make of that what you will with that statement but we can assure you that gingers are the ones you’d never forget.
Take, for example, Ready Moto’s latest touch on a 1978 Honda CB550. Affectionately dubbed ‘Ginger’, this particular build was commissioned by a customer who approached Brandon Nelson of Ready Moto after coming across his previous project on the internet.
“He saw Doris (the last build) online and wanted something similar, but tailored more specifically to his tastes,” commented Brandon. “Up until this point I had only built bikes for myself, but I’d always had daydreams of wrenching in my workshop for a living, so I saw this as an opportunity to see if I could execute a build for someone on commission.”
To begin at the beginning, the donor bike was sourced and was mostly original in condition – it even had roughly just 22,000 miles on the clock. Following on from that, Brandon had a chat with the client to lock down specific details in regards to the theme of the build. According to him, the brief was easy enough – the client wanted something ‘timeless’ and to keep the motorcycle looking clean and simple.
“I kicked things off by reconfiguring the stock 4-into-4 pipes to a more compact 4-into-2 setup, ending in a pair of stainless reverse cone mufflers. I removed the stock airbox and replaced the filters with raw aluminum velocity stacks. The motor got a fresh top end along with a carb rebuild, rejet, and dyna electronic ignition,” said Brandon.
Following on from that, the entire rear frame was jettisoned and replaced with a new tubing to allow for the straight line of the tank to flow all the way to the tail of the motorcycle. The seat itself was fashioned out of auto foam and then shipped out to the folks at New Church Moto for the leather work.
The biggest deal of the build was perhaps the handlebars themselves. “I knew I wanted the handlebars to be something special – I had been toying with the idea of making a set of adjustable clip-on handlebars,” said Brandon. “The stock triple clamp was replaced with a CNC version that deletes the old handlebar mounts. I sourced a set of Frisco-style handlebars that had the 90° bend I was after and welded on some fork clamps from an old set of traditional style clip-ons,” he added.
Other than that, Brandon ensured that every part of the build was thought out. “The forks, shocks, and brakes were all fully rebuilt. The wheels were trued with all new spokes and a fresh set of Dunlop K70 tires and the job was done.”