It seems the lowrider style of custom motorcycles that’s so popular in Southern California really knows no boundaries. As proof, the low-and-lean look can be found all over the world and coast to coast as evident by this 2009 Deluxe build by Elite Motor Sports out of Boynton Beach, Florida.
Tony, owner of Elite Motor Sports, and his crew have been building custom Harleys for the past nine years. When asked what drove this Florida shop to build a West Coast-style bike, he had this to say: “The previous owner of this bike came into the shop one day to sell his bike, and we decided to buy it. Originally the bike had a factory paint job that was in a very unpopular color. Immediately we knew that had to be changed. We all wanted something that would stand out at the local bike nights yet still be comfortable to do longer charity runs and be great for zipping around town.”
The most important step of building a lowrider-style bike is to decrease the vertical clearance and get the fenders in the weeds. There is more than one way to drop it low, but Tony had his own ideas of how to lower the bike and still keep it streetworthy as he explains, “Our vision was to create a lowrider-style Harley. First we put the Legend air ride on the bike to get it low. Once it was on, we realized it just wasn’t enough, so we decided to stretch the stock fender 4 inches to give it that dropped effect we were going for but not lose any functionality.” The combination of air and stretched metal left the Deluxe sitting as close to asphalt as possible while still remaining rideable.
Chrome won’t get home, but a nice paint job will get you attention. So the next step in the process was to lay down some “Kolor” on the stretched tins. “We wanted to mimic the lowrider car paint schemes,” Tony says, “so we went to our painter and showed pictures of different cars and told him the colors that we wanted to use. We had to have a panel-style paint job with heavy metalflake. That was a must. Our painter took it from there, and we couldn’t have been happier with the end result.”
Finally to put the finishing touches on the low-and-slow look were the wire wheels from Ride Wright, apehanger bars, and fishtail exhaust. “When it came time to pick out the rims there were many different designs thrown out there, but in the end we decided on the spokes,” Tony says. “The wires kept it in line with the lowrider look, but the teardrops gave it something that you don’t see every day. Carlini Gangster Apes and a Samson fishtail exhaust were added to give it that old-school styling.”
When it comes to building a lowrider bike, the address of the boulevard doesn’t really matter. So long as the look is low and clean, and a few simple rules are followed, it doesn’t take much to get the soul of a Cali-born cruiser.