Building your own motorcycle or chopper from a kit is a great way to custom-design your own bike. But building from a bike kit can be expensive, time- and labor-consuming work. It can also be incredibly satisfying once you’ve assembled the entire bike together. Deciding on whether to custom-design your own bike from a kit is a long process that should take time, labor and expense factors into consideration. Here is a list of things you should consider before buying a bike kit and steps you should take while assembling it.
1. Before buying a kit, determine what type of bike you want to build. Do you want to build a motorcycle or a chopper? Also, what level of mechanical difficulty are you comfortable with? Other issues you should take into consideration include: style, design, complexity, budget, labor and time. Once you’ve determined all of these factors, then looking for the right bike kit will be much easier for you.
2. Check what will come assembled with your bike kit. Most bike kits include the engine, chassis, exhaust pipes, tires, steel tanks and any other metallic parts, taillights, controls, a seat and a headlamp. You will have to buy accessories, such as mirrors and speedometers, separately. Again, based on budget considerations, determine how much you can afford to spend on any accessories not included in the bike kit.
3. Before deciding on which bike kit to buy, check the style and design of the chassis included in the kit. The chassis is the most important part of the bike’s body and will determine whether or not it will fit your style.
4. If budget is an issue, comparison shop. Check your local motorcycle or chopper dealers for the best price. Also check online. Many online dealers, such as eBay, sell bike kits at reasonable prices. Again, make certain that the kits being sold have all the necessary parts. Determine whether you want to buy a bike kit from a little-known custom builder or if you want to buy one from a more established manufacturer, such as Jesse James. Again, this will all depend on how much you want to spend.
5. Once you buy the kit, make sure all the parts are included in the kit. Each kit should come with an inventory list to make this easier. Next, check the instructions carefully. Understand the steps and processes you need to take before you build the bike. If you’re proficient in basic mechanics and the way motorcycles operate, then you will have a better time constructing the bike. If not, it is perhaps better for you to send the parts to a local custom builder to have him assemble the bike for you.
6. Determine which part of the bike you want to begin with. Any part of the motorcycle can be built separately. Therefore, there is no one part with which you should begin. Depending on time and labor, one part might be easier to construct first than another. For instance, assembling the front wheel might be a better place to start than the engine, or vice versa. Remember to take time and labor into consideration before deciding what part of the bike you want to assemble first.
7. Map out the amount of time you want to devote to each part of the bike and when. Custom-building a bike, even from a kit, is time-consuming. Depending on time considerations, it could take a week or even months to build. Allow enough time and space to factor in setbacks or mistakes (such as screwing on unwieldy nuts or bolts or drilling mistakes). This will eliminate unnecessary frustration when the assemblage takes longer than you anticipated.