October 2018 Shop Talk with Shannon Aikau and Ryan Evans

By Shannon Aikau & Ryan Evans

Photos by Samantha M. Frontiera

Shannon: What’s going on gang? This is Shop Talk with Shannon and Ryan.

Ryan: Hey everybody!

Shannon: Today we’re talking about this bike. (pointing to bike on lift) Built it at home. His first bike, but he’s had it for a very long time.

Ryan: Right, slowly but surely he’s been building it. And this is what we love. This is a perfect example.

Shannon: Yeah, don’t say, “Perfect example of what not to do.”

Ryan: No, no, no.

Shannon: He made it his own.

Ryan: No, he’s done exactly what he needed to do correctly, and this is why.

Shannon: Right. So the customer brought his bike in, and he wants us to go over it before we paint it, which is smart. And he says it’s running.

Ryan: Yep.

Shannon: It doesn’t have any oil and gas in it, but it’s running. Ok. First things first, we noticed that this bike has a very, very long front end and it’s heavy. Very heavy. Even with these huge handlebars, it’s kinda hard to pick up.

Ryan: But the most important thing and the thing that I appreciate the most, being that I’m going to be doing the paint and body work on it, is a lot of the people that build their bikes at home, they don’t want to build the bike two or three times. So they’ll mock-up a few things and then send it off to paint and body. That’s when things go wrong. If you’re doing this at home, get the bike running, driving down the street. Shake the whole thing down. Trust me, it’s just nuts and bolts. It comes apart easy. Make sure you’re making all the corrections and fixing anything that you have to fix before it goes to paint and body. In this particular case, he’s got his frame chromed. We did notice a few things and we’re going to try and work around those. But still, shake it down before you make it pretty, because after it’s pretty, then it just gets ugly from there.

Shannon: That’s the painter telling you that! So that’s the painter! You don’t want to paint it two and three times again.

Ryan: Too many times when I hear someone’s building a bike at home or even some shops for that matter, they’ll completely assemble the bike in mock-up, but not run it down the road. Then they tear everything down and send it off to people like me. We do all the paint and bodywork and it’s beautiful. They start putting the bike together. Bolts don’t go through holes. They’re still drilling holes. Brackets break. Tabs break. Things bend. At that point you’re back to the paint shop again. And painters hate, hate fixing stuff after it just left their shop.

Shannon: So words from the wise man himself. But yes we will take your projects on. Completed to how you completed them in your garage. You give it us and we’ll proofread it. It’s kind of like proof-reading a book report.

Ryan: Please. I like the styling on this bike. This is not a bike that we would build and that’s what make me so happy about it.

Shannon: Hey!

Ryan: No, no, no. I love how we build bikes. I will always love our bikes. I’ll love our bikes more than anyone else’s. But it’s nice to get something else for a change. And they’re all learning lessons.

Shannon: Ok, I’ll take that as a compliment.

Ryan: It’s a compliment. I love working on our stuff. But it’s nice to work on other people’s stuff too. It’s a learning lesson.

Shannon: I got you. I hear you. Well this is what you do, right? And we’ll take your bikes on in any shape or form. So please, listen to Ryan.

Ryan: <laughing>

Shannon: Have a good day gang. Aloha.

Ryan: See you.