Editor's note: There are plenty of people whose dream job would be to own their own company or work in the motorcycle industry. Sure it's a great gig to be surrounded by your passion every day and night, and while it comes with a great appreciation to work in such a fun industry, it also comes with a lot of hard work and long hours, as we found out when Kevin Martin of Dragonfly Cycle Concepts (DCC) relayed the story to us about his latest new product display/personal bike. If you're not familiar with DCC, for the past seven years, the company has been putting rock 'n' roll to the road with its fairing and audio kits.
We've been extremely busy this past summer. First my fiancée, Sandra and I got a new place together during the first week of June. Then for the next three weeks we moved the existing DCC operation into a new, larger facility right down the block. This new building allowed us to fulfill a longtime dream of doing our own in-house paint. The weekend following the move we threw a grand opening party, inviting longtime local customers, posse members, and riders involved in the Seattle Children's Ride 14. Three days later I grabbed Sandra for a trip to Mexico to get married before Sturgis!
With only three weeks to go before our semi was to depart for Sturgis, I started tearing my 2009 FLHX apart for a complete redo, frame and all. This build was going to showcase all the new products; fenders, Viper Control Center and Electra Glide inner dash we had just created. I was psyched about this project, but a little worried, because I wanted to personally test out our new paint facility and hadn't touched a paint gun in about 12 years. I knew this bike deserved something really special when it came to the paint, and I wanted to be the one to do it.
We've made our name outfitting baggers with the best sound available. And after years of using car audio technology we realized it was just too sensitive for motorcycle torture, so we partnered up with an audio engineering company that could make the stereo that our riders needed and deserved. Our new Viper Control Center is a truly innovative piece of machinery, and a touring man's all-in-one dream. Can you imagine a trip getting any more cool than with an LCD screen-based system that not only runs your stereo, but shows you how hot your oil is, or where the nearest gas stop and grub is located? Handy is an understatement.
We first had to design a replacement for the factory inner dash, reusing the outer shell and lower switch panel so it would still easily mount up. Using injection molded plastic like OEM, our production piece drops right in and looks clean and uncluttered without losing anything and includes 6 1/2-inch speakers and factory-matched paint.
The 7-inch chrome faced LCD screen displays all factory indicator lights, trip meter, gear indicator, and the replacement Dragonfly gauges can be toggled between digital or analog. The gauges include speedo, tach, fuel gauge, volt meter, oil pressure and oil temp. A waterproof screen withstands 1,000 PSI of water directly to the face, and with no internally moving parts, it won't rattle apart like a car stereo. The stereo itself is a1GB hard drive so you can load MP3s onto it with a USB cable that runs into your saddlebag. Or you can just plug in a thumb drive full of songs. The unit is fully plug and play other than the oil temp sensor that is added to the oil pan and wired up to the unit. It also still utilizes your H-D hand controls for the stereo functions.
With one week gone and Sturgis looming, I asked my son Danny to give me a hand for our first father-son bike build. Danny, only 19 years old, has not had a lot of experience in bike building. But being around DCC since I started the business seven years ago hasn't hurt. I knew it was time to see what he was capable of creating on a tight deadline. The next two weeks were packed with several 24-hour days, but the kid hung in there like a champ.