In the words of Edwyn Collins - Rip it up and start again. One of the best things about old Harleys is that is exactly what you can do, and so I am going to completely re-model my Richard II bike, which to be fair is less than 2 years into its current incarnation. However its done a few great road trips with me, including an awesome 1800 mile ride to Croatia in 2011 - and clocked up 5000 miles. Over this time you find the issues that you dont like - which for me is mainly the mudguards. I inherited theses beasts, from when it was first built as the famous Blower bike, and whilst I love the lines of them, they are extremely heavy and very low - so low that if I got a puncture they would dig into the road....which would not be pretty.
So the plan for Spring 2013 is to do a low key makeover, to make the bike much more practical and more of an everyday vehicle for me - and hopefully the bike I ride on the first big Road Trip of 2013 to St Tropez.
The key elements will be a plain Gloss Black paint scheme, featuring the number IX in white. I am replacing the wheels with a set of old HD Thunderstar cast wheels left over from my old FXD (which became Caesar Racer) - these will be powdercoated Gloss Black. For tyres I am going Old School and I have just taken delivery of some Avon Rubber - Speedmaster Mk II for the front and Safety Mileage Mk II on the back. The exhausts are currently a 2-1 with a polished steel open exhaust - this last element will be replaced with a squat Supertrapp Race Can. Then some new shorter mudguards cut back like a bobber. Finally in keeping with my Shakespeare themes - this will now be Tempest IX - with a quote "That Beasts shall tremble at the Din". Here are some pics of the bits.