Harley-Davidson Othello Tracker

While taking a sabbatical from his real job in commercial real estate Englishman Ian Solley started building custom motorcycles under the name of ““. Although not yet his full time job, Ian builds an average of 2 bikes a year, one of them I already featured here in my Blog. Particularity: all his projects are based on a Harley-Davidson Street Bob (most often bought used), from which he keeps only engine, transmission, wheel hubs, most of the electrical, and part of the frame to keep the VIN number (not something you are supposed to do here in the US. Right?). What he doesn’t use can be found on eBay where the orphan parts have no difficulty being sold, the total proceeds considerably lowering the price of each of his new customs. Did he encourage you to do same? This tracker is provisionally called “Chaos is come again” (see gas tank) a quote from Othello, the tragedy from William Shakespeare…

The rebuild list looks like this. One-off rigid frame, rubber mounted Harley 96″ Twin Cam A engine with S&S E Shorty carburetor, Harley 6-speed gearbox, Harley primary using a V-Rod belt, stock length Springer front end by DNA, off off ape hangers, black hand and foot controls by CPV, Harley headlamp, Cast brass taillight by Shade Tree Fabrications, Bobber seat pan & shocks by Chopper Shox with upholstery by Dianne Cooper, RBS Rocker mounted Speedo, 23”” 40 Spoke Stainless front and rear wheel by Devon Rim Company powdercoated in black and dressed with Avon Cobra tires, 2-piston front caliper and rear sprocket/brake drive system. Othello can be considered an extreme customized Harley (if you keep the VIN number). .

18 Responses to “Harley-Davidson Othello Tracker”

  1. 1 maroco Jul 26th, 2010 at 12:33 pm

    Hi Mr.Patumwan,

    I like ask if it´s possible do the same in Europe whidout T.U.V aprovement.
    Thank´s for answer.

  2. 2 Fluke Jul 26th, 2010 at 2:56 pm

    Maroco, I assume you are talking about the V.I.N. number transfer with this bike? Had Ian done this in the USA he would be put in prison for fraud or heavily fined. That is just the USA.

    T.U.V. approval is a standard testing organization in Germany, Technischer ÜberwachungsVerein. Though with many products other Euro states cheat by using T.U.V. standards instead of creating their own, why the standard has become so ubiquitous and T.U.V. approval has become this holy grail of product quality. It doesn’t really have any relevance with V.I.N. numbers.

    Each euro state has different laws on the legality of this V.I.N. transfer Ian has used, while this is perfectly acceptable in the UK, for low volume or single vehicle registration the UK is easy going compared to most Euro states. it wouldn’t work in France for example. In France you can transfer the registration from one vehicle chassis to another, so I could buy an HD donar bike and an off the shelf custom chassis from whomever I fancy as long as it had some number stamped on it, then register it as the original vehicle with the same number plate (Tag in the USA) ) as the HD supplying the papers, the new chassis number must be stamped alongside the old one, ( or on a stamped plate riveted to the chassis and the receipt for the purchase of the new chassis with VIN must be kept with the registration documents at all times.

    BTW, I did the above on an old VW 23 window bus many years ago, not even the police knew the law and I ended up having to go to court to prove I was in the right. It is a very grey area.

    Every other euro state will have different rules for sure, maybe our bananas are standard sizes in all euro states but the custom bike rules are all over the place.

  3. 3 Fluke Jul 26th, 2010 at 3:02 pm

    Oh, yeah, Nice bike, Ian. As always. I would love to have met you in the Cote D’Azur, but some work came in. work always comes before fun in crappy economies. Perhaps next year, my streamliner will be done by then.

  4. 4 ian Jul 26th, 2010 at 5:31 pm

    Cheers Fluke – I would add that you also get an SVA certificate as well – but it is easier to do this in the UK.

  5. 5 ger Jul 26th, 2010 at 5:34 pm

    cool bike ian
    might see ya at the ally pally next march again.

  6. 6 ROCKSTAR Jul 27th, 2010 at 12:32 am

    fugly… de-rake & get a repo springer with diff bars

  7. 7 burnout Jul 27th, 2010 at 9:56 am

    Love the rigid rear with slim tire. Interesting color choice. peace

  8. 8 mym Jul 27th, 2010 at 10:00 am

    cool bike, looks good

  9. 9 cwglide Jul 27th, 2010 at 1:47 pm

    I have always liked the look of the frame outlining the gastank, just like the olden days. Very Cool!!!!!!

  10. 10 martin Jul 27th, 2010 at 2:06 pm

    This is the kind of bike you either like or dislike with no middle of the road,so the design is there but the the bike is lacking a great deal…..

  11. 11 Brian Jul 27th, 2010 at 3:43 pm

    A great “Harley”. Thanks Cyril.

  12. 12 Gary France Jul 28th, 2010 at 7:20 am

    That is one great looking bike. I saw it at Ally Pally and Ian has done a terrific job with it.

  13. 13 maroco Jul 28th, 2010 at 1:38 pm

    Hi Fluke,

    Many thank´s for the information.
    The bike is great.

  14. 14 Fluke Jul 28th, 2010 at 3:11 pm

    Ian said “I would add that you also get an SVA certificate as well – but it is easier to do this in the UK.”

    Can I ask,as my current build will never meet French standards in a millenium of blue moons, wouldn’t the SVA come with a new V.I.N. ? and a Q (or whatever the current version of that is) registration number? What gain is there in having the original HD paperwork too? other than the obvious of having it registered as an HD.

    also, if you have S.V.A. registered this, how hard is the S.V.A. to pass in reality for bikes? All I have are the DVLAs own official stuff to go on which isn’t overly enlightening, to put it mildly.

  15. 15 jatinder pal Jul 29th, 2010 at 1:41 am

    Nice bike bro..

  16. 16 ian Jul 29th, 2010 at 11:18 am

    Thanks for all the comments – even Rockstars!
    Here is a nice picture I took of the bike the other week.

  17. 17 trent reker Jan 21st, 2011 at 8:11 pm

    when will harley come up with an idea that isn’t a ripoff of of bike builders who struggle to pay their hard earned nut?

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