Heading out to Youngtown, Arizona to meet Tom McCormick of Curly’s Customs on a cloudy Friday afternoon, I had no idea that the gentleman I was about to encounter would turn out to be such a genuinely unpretentious guy. I walked into the building and immediately noticed how the lobby appeared to be chopped in two. A monstrous display case of insects, arachnids and other creepy-crawlies stretched f loor to ceiling on the left while the opposite wall was covered with black leather, motorcycle accessories and biker attire. I would soon come to understand the significance of these two worlds joining together in Tom’s life.
By Angela Conner
Tom has been the owner of Curly’s Customs for a little over 7 years now. It’s a custom motorcycle shop that specializes in recreating bikes for the “working man.” Uniquely fabricated bags and side covers line the shelves of this garage while a variety of fenders and gas tanks hang from the ceiling. There is no ordering from a catalogue here as all bags and fenders are handcrafted in shop by Tom and his one full time employee, an Englishman named Lee. They create their own plugs and molds so that the pieces fit perfectly on each customer’s motorcycle. Off to the side there is a painting booth and a mixing room with limitless colors waiting to be combined and created.
Tom’s generosity and authenticity was apparent as we talked. He spoke with me about how he began working full time at the age of 14 in a body shop as a Sander. He soon understood the value of learning everything you can from those around you and acquired other skills such as painting and body work. When he came to a crossroad in his early 20s, Tom made the choice to go into the extermination business. Tom’s reliability and determination paid off as he built a highly respectful relationship between himself and his boss. He took over General Extermination Pest Control after years of loyalty and dedication upon his boss’s passing. Tom currently owns 2 successful extermination companies and is looking to open a third up near Prescott, Arizona. Tom’s passion for bugs has helped him to build his business and in turn given him the opportunity to pursue his other interest – working on motorcycles.
No job is too big or too small for Curly’s. Whether it is something as simple as repainting a scratched fender or as complex as installing a rear bagger stretch kit, Tom strives to make every customer completely satisfied. During the months of November and December Curly’s is offering 25% off complete installs. You can drop off your stock ride and pick it up a short time later with a stretched rear fender, matching hand-built bags , hidden LED tail lights , and exhaust extensions- all color matched perfectly. Your stock bike is entirely transformed into a head turning custom for under 5 grand. Check out the back cover of Quick Throttle for options and complete pricing details.
I think what struck me most after talking with Tom was his sincere understanding of the impact people have on one another in this world. He appreciates all the guidance and support his mentors have given him throughout his life and strives to be that same kind of man. After meeting Tom and his beautiful wife Sherry I am reminded that independent business owners with skill and integrity still exist. I encourage anyone in need of bike work or bug work to stop by Curly’s in Youngtown, Arizona or visit his website at www.curlyscustoms.com.