HB: How did you come to have T-Rod and Rusty at Illusion Motorsports build this bike for you?
I met Rusty and T-Rod through a TA on the show, and they were big fans of the show. I met them at a toy run and we got to talking. I had this Dyna that Harley had given me for a year and it was this thing where every year they were going to renew it, then Harley kind of bailed on us and pulled the bike. So I sat down with Rusty and T-Rod and told them I wanted to build a bike. They had built a Sons of Anarchy charity bike for the Wounded Warriors Foundation and they did a killer job on that bike, so I hired them to build mine. We just sat down and built it from the ground up (on paper). It took about three or four months to build and it was a fantastic experience because I had never been part of that creative process.
HB: So how much input did you have in the design and parts.
I didn’t really know much about building the bike, I just knew what I liked in terms of riding and that’s what I was able to communicate. I like a mid ride, I like being centered, I like being on top of the bike rather than reaching for the bike, so we sort of based it on that and then they were able to incorporate some of the designs Illusion has become known for. So my contribution was really just letting them know what I like and what I wanted. I wanted it to be really simple, black and chrome, badass, and low maintenance. And then I really just let them run with it. They did mockups and sketches and kept me plugged in the whole way and sent me pictures of the progress. I really dig Illusion’s 12-inch risers. They are like modern art to me. And the big 114 (engine) is just a monster. The fork tubes took the longest. They took about six weeks to do because they were sent out to get a Diamond-Like Carbon Coating finish. It’s so badass! It was really wild watching all those pieces come together and it’s a great ride. It’s super powerful but the bike never gets away from me. And the transmission and clutch are really smooth so I never feel like I am lurching into gear. It’s as smooth and easy to ride as the off-the-line Dyna was, but it’s just a lot more powerful and a lot more finessed. It’s a badass looking bike, but I wanted it to be a functional bike. I didn’t want it to be a bike I could only take out twice a year because to do more than 50 miles on it would be too uncomfortable. I really wanted it to be a bike I could just get on and ride everyday. And now that the bike is finished and I know more of what I like and what I don’t like, I can go back and say, “OK the reach is a little long, let’s move the pegs a little.” And Illusion is great about that stuff. They’ll say, “OK let’s get it right.” Rusty and T-Rod just have great vision with that shit.
“I sat down with Rusty and T-Rod and told them I wanted to build a bike. They had built a Sons of Anarchy charity bike for the Wounded Warriors Foundation and they did a killer job on that bike, so I hired them to build mine.”
HB: What can viewers look forward to in season four besides more bloodshed and mayhem?
We’re back in Charming, we’re out of jail, and it’s really about the club, the inner dynamics of the club. It’s sort of like be careful what you wish for, because they’re out of jail, the gun game has been upped, and they are making more money. But it’s all the complications that come with greed, power, personal conflicts, and history. All that stuff that starts to percolate and ultimately will come to a head. I don’t want to say specifically who will be bouncing off of whom, but it’s really about the inner working of the club and setting out some of the history we put out in season three. And I have a sense that as season four progresses, viewers will really get an understanding why it was imperative for us to go to Ireland and reveal some of that back story of John Teller. HB