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King Of Kings 2020

Fight for the Crown

In the new decade not only the “King of the Battle” is wanted, – the King of Kings is wanted! This means that all Dealers who won for their country in recent years can go full throttle in 2020!

Unlike the last Battle, we are not limited in our choice regarding engine and frame, because this year the theme is Evo-Sportster, but the year of manufacture doesn’t matter! You’ll find out what the birth year of Kim and Andreas is, and which one they’ve chosen. Furthermore, no changes are to be made to the frame and the swingarm must be fully functional. One of the most important criteria is of course the roadworthiness.

The project will be especially interesting, because there is no budget limit and we can go deeper into our bag of tricks! You will see the complete bike at the beginning of the voting on 1 March.

Be curious and have a look at the single steps of the Maiking Of in the next weeks! 

Stripping & Inventory

The Swingarm

The Swing arm is one of our favorite parts for very special bike projects. 

The design was created by us in a highly contemporary method, on the computer, the realization, on the opposite, was created in the old blacksmith’s method. As you can see in the Making Of, it all started with a simple steel tube, which was bent by Jörg and Reiner with lots of fire, smoke, and pure „Craftsmanship“.

Two folded parts and two machined parts form the connecting part to the bearing points on the frame, so the front section of the swing arm is finished. The rear part of the swingarm is much more complicated, more than 20 individual parts that are welded together are necessary to bring this sophisticated form, with corresponding function together. So the brake arm support, chain adjuster, lower shock mounts and license Plate Bracket  are not simply bolt on, they blend in perfectly into the design of the swingarm.

In a few days we will continue with the tank – we are looking forward to hearing what you think. 

Fender, Struts and Sissybar

For the whole line of a bike the rear fender and the struts are certainly two of the most important components.

The rear fender of our King of Kings bike is, as with all the previously published parts, very complex and sophisticated. We decided to have a short but dominant sissybar, as well as a fender that accompanies the large rear wheel to just beyond the apex. We still had the Struts on stock, but of course they are not recognisable! Until the steel struts had their curved shape, we tried out many different variations. Finally we halved the individual struts, welded them together in opposite directions and doubled the front part to achieve the perfect line. The whole process had to take into account the ascending and descending struts of the rear frame and the rear wheel radius.

The Sissybar fits seamlessly into the process. The basic material used was also an old strut that we designed some the ago for the BossHoss bike „Hoss Power“. But even here it was only a template for a new design! We also came up with a nice solution for the rear light and the indicators.

Air Cleaner and Gravour

 

To turn our King of Kings competition bike into a show stepper, the bike needs, besides all technically complex suspension solutions, an immediately recognizable value!

For this purpose, we have set some accents in golden brass. We milled all parts from the full material. We don´t want to give away all the parts we made, but we made some exclusive parts like air filter cover and exhaust end caps. But that was not enough for us! To get more details of the bike, we got the engraver Carsten Estermann on board. Carsten engraved some of the parts by hand with a dremel.

We were impressed not only by his creativity in choosing the motifs, but also by the extremely consistent depth of the engravings that he removed from the metal.

Tank

That’s the best part of it!

The irony speaks for itself. It’s about the already announced fuel tank of our KotK competition bikes, which is in no way inferior to the swing arm. The tank consists of two parts. On the one hand the base plate, on which the tank will be fixed later, on the other hand the tank itself.

Most people will ask themselves now, why have we decided this solution? In short: It is very complex, there are hardly any tolerances and it is actually totally unnecessary…But it is challenging and looks damn cool!

Starting with the fuel tank, it is first freed from its base and narrowed down to the desired width. In addition, the tank is provisionally stapled together in some places and then a new smooth bottom plate is added. For the steel base plate, the tank bottom is first drawn as an outline on cardboard and then scanned and extended by 7mm on all sides using a CAD program. Our master welder Jörg has welded two milled flat bars with integrated fixing points in complex manual work on this 7mm enlarged base plate. This creates a beautiful mount for the tank. The construction process of the tank is an interesting example of how well traditional craftsmanship and modern technology can work together. The surfaces are subsequently time-consuming sanded, polished and finished by Chiko’s Pinstriping with a fantastic lacquer (which color it has become will of course not be revealed yet!)

Gearshift Leaver

The manual gear lever is a very special unique piece and is also a technical high-end solution.

The development begins with a seating test, because the lever should be easy to reach during the ride! Afterwards a rough sketch is made on cardboard, which is then provided with lengths and widths in further steps. It is important that the two steps of the primary are taken into account, so that the lever can later be moved close to the bike. With this information we went to our CAD-designer Andre. From his sketches and in close cooperation with the guys in the custom workshop he makes a three-dimensional drawing. By the way, the lever was designed in exactly the same design as the lever of the foot brake. Once the drawing is finished it’s translated into a program, this process alone takes 8 working hours! This work step is so complex because the milling machine does an incredible job with 5 axles and therefore all swivel ranges and interfering contours of the machine have to be calculated. The lever is machined out of a solid block of billet aluminium and later polished to a high gloss finish in our in-house polishing department. For complete refinement a brass knob is turned, which is also refined by engraver Carsten Estermann. We are proud of this splendid piece!

Frontend

We do not make any compromises with the frontend as well!

 

The basis for this like: Fork, wheel hub and brake calipers are from the legendary Ironhead. The rest is made by Thunderbike! This Narrowglide fork is of course first choice for the right chopper look! Triple tree, headlights, speedo brackets and turn signals were milled from the full!

Also the handlebars fit the Easyriders style perfectly! For the bike we put the handlebars together from 3 parts. Part one, is a connecting piece milled from the full one, which is screwed to the triple tree and forms the lower curve at the same time. Part two and three are taken from an old handlebar that was sacrificed for it. The arches of the old handlebars were simply cut off to fit and after the seat test they were tacked to part one and then welded.

Because the roadworthiness is a necessary condition for the King of King competition, we couldn’t do without speedometer and indicators. After a long time of testing we found a suitable place for the necessary components. For speedometer and indicator lights Andre designed us a nice holder – of course matching the headlight design! Have you already discovered the turn signals? Like two little snakes they wrap around the fork pipe! It is one of the smallest but still one of the most brilliant specials.

Oil Tank

Another highlight of our King of Kings bike is certainly the oil tank. This is completely handmade and has not yet been built by us!

But those who have followed the steps so far already know that this does not even just happen and of course it comes along with unexpected turns. The rough shape of the tank starts with a cardboard template which mechanic Reiner, an icon in our custom workshop, forms by hand. The shape of the oil tank is very important to give our bike a slim look and to guarantee a good transition between the rear and the front end of the bike. To achieve this, it must sit centrally in the frame and be positioned in good relation to the adjacent rear fender and frame tube. The cardboard template must now be transferred to 1.5mm sheet steel, which is very challenging, because cardboard can be bent in itself and therefore the template can only serve as a rough template. Our welder and specialist for the tricky tasks, Jörg, has left the sheets 1cm longer at the ends to shorten them later to the right size. In spite of this safety precaution, at least one tank usually goes “over the Jordan“.

To give the tank more optical depth, a 6mm hydraulic pipe is folded over at the edges and shaped into a fin. It is important that the fin is tinned and not filled, because the strong vibrations of the V2 engine can later lead to cracks in the filler and paint. Because of this, the tank is also mounted on rubber bearings in the frame. In order to be able to execute its function later on, the connections for outlet, return and ventilation are welded in. 

The Sattle

„The perfect fit“

We had determined the style for the seat of the King of King Bikes relatively early, because if you are serious about a chopper, there is no way around a King & Queen seat.

During the starting phases Andreas brought in an old couch , with an interesting stitching from his private archive to the workshop. Everyone agreed immediately that this would make the perfect design. 
Our choice for the right upholsterer fell on Jimi from Spirit Leather. He brings the necessary experience and a lot of heart and soul to realize the leather and upholstery work for our project.
After a short consultation, we sent him our steel seat shell as well as the upholstery pattern and gave him a free hand for the further design.
What he brought over to us 3 weeks later left many a jaw dropped. A bench seat that fits like a glove. He chose a water buffalo antique finish for the surface, which harmonizes perfectly with the paint of the bike. The stitching is decorated with brass rivets and the Thunderbike logo proudly emblazoned on the back. 
In the style of the 70s, Jimmy from Spirit Leather has thus perfectly implemented this theme. With the seat he created the perfect transition between tank, fender and sissy bar.

The last Battles

Battle of the Kings 2019

New year, new battle! Also in 2019 we participate in the Harley-Davidson Battle of the Kings contest. In this article you will find information about the event.

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Battle of the Kings Finale 2017

As part of the Hamburger Motorcycle Days, the final of the Harley-Davidson Battle of the Kings 2017 competition took place. We made it again among the best!

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Battle of the Kings Finale 2016

We had already won the German Battle of the Kings final and thus got a ticket for the EU final in Biarritz on the "Wheels & Wave". Now it was all about - the overall winner of the EU-wide customizing competition was announced in San Pedro, Spain.

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Your Contact

Hutmacher

Stefan Hutmacher

Sales, Financing

0049 2852 - 6777-53
stefan@thunderbike.de

Wolter

Julian Wolter

Sales, Financing, Rental, Custombikes

0049 2852 - 6777-41
julian@thunderbike.de

Gerlach

Dirk Gerlach

Sales, Financing

0049 2852 - 6777-55
dirk.gerlach@thunderbike.de

Dockhorn

Ingo Dockhorn

Sales, Financing, Rental

0049 2852 - 6777-54
ingo@thunderbike.de

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