This week Harley-Davidson wrapped up its first-ever weeklong motorcycle show hosted virtually on the brand’s Instagram page. Cleverly named “The No Show,” it featured builders invited by H-D and the postponed Mama Tried, Congregation Vintage Bike & Car, and Born-Free Motorcycles shows. More than 60 contestants from around the world participated, posting images and videos of their custom builds that varied radically in style– with three standout builds grabbing titles.
- When the dust settled and the votes were cast, three winners rose to the top in three distinct categories:
- Media Choice Award: chosen and presented by a journalist panel from industry-leading motorcycle publications.
- H-D Styling & Design Award: chosen and presented by Brad Richards, vice president of styling & design at Harley-Davidson and long-time garage builder.
- Harley-Davidson Museum Award: chosen by museum staff and presented by Bill Davidson, vice president of the Harley-Davidson Museum and great-grandson of Harley-Davidson’s Co-Founder William A. Davidson.
The winner of the “Media Choice Award” is Ben Zales of Burbank, California for his custom 1963 Harley-Davidson Panhead motorcycle. Journalists approved of the bike’s unique take and its ‘60’s era influence. Zales fabricated the bike in his home garage, building the tank, pipes, seat and controls from scratch. The interesting tear-dropped oil tank is designed to match the fuel tank, kicker-pedal and seat, visually tying it all together. Zales is no stranger to the custom bike scene, as he is a Born-Free 10 and 11 invited builder, as well as carrying the esteemed title of being a Mooneyes Hot Rod Custom Show 2019 invited guest. Check out a full walkaround of Zales’ build on Instagram.
Picking up the “H-D Styling & Design Award” is Michael Lange of Waukesha, Wisconsin for his customized 1921 Harley-Davidson Banjo Two-cam Board Track Racer. Lange cleverly converted a single-cam Harley-Davidson into a twin-cam and also fabricated the cam chest, cover and gear rack – not to mention the camshafts, gears and oil pump. Notable features include H-D factory racing cylinder casting from a board track racer, and the gas tank is hand fabricated. Brad Richards of Harley-Davidson’s styling and design team said, “The custom build stood out for its beauty, but also as a pure racing machine with a re-engineered motor that keeps the bike performing.” Lange has been an invited builder to the Mama Tried Motorcycle Show since its inception. Click here to see a walkaround of the build.
Taking home the “Harley-Davidson Museum Award” is Christian Newman of Buffalo, New York for his svelte, all stainless-steel custom 1940 Harley-Davidson Knucklehead motorcycle that he designed and fabricated. H-D Museum staff chose Newman due to the thoughtfulness of attention to detail that his build showcases. Particularly interesting elements of the build include narrowing the transmission 2 inches, running the oil through the frame, feed, return and vent. The bike also boasts a sprocket and brake rotor mounted on the exterior of the frame, girder fork, open rockers, and vintage glass lenses in handmade housings. The handlebar, grips and controls are handmade as well. Newman is a Born-Free 12 invited builder and to check out his latest creation, click this link.
To check out all the entries into the The No Show, visit Harley-Davidson’s official Instagram page and scroll through the dizzying array of bikes on display, accompanied by a personal video of each builder, describing their custom motorcycles in detail. Limited edition merchandise from The No Show is available for purchase, with all proceeds benefitting the invited builders directly.
Those who missed the show can visit Harley-Davidson’s Instagram page to scroll through the array of bikes and tap into their favorites where they’ll see a personal video of each builder walking them through his or her masterpiece. A virtual “stage” to listen to acoustic sets is also still available as well as a “merch booth” featuring ultra-limited-edition The No Show t-shirts that can be purchased while supplies last, with 100 percent of T-shirt sales going directly to benefit invited builders.