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Drew's 78 Rigid
This bike started out for me as kind of a goldwing wannabe. When I bought it, it had a vetter windjammer fairing, complete with stereo and poor mans surround sound, a big nasty trailer hitch, and a luggage rack/backrest. First thing I did was to pull the hitch off, clean up the carbs some, and get it running.

Since this was my first bike it became quite a learning experience. I got it running pretty good and rode it like that for a while. Then I found and shortly after it hit me. I started making changes. I added forward controls, changed the exhaust out, removed the airbox for some v-stacks, removed the fairing and other extras. I then added a pair of 8" over forks, extended the down tubes, added struts to drop the rear, and started thinking of it as a ride-able mock-up. 

After riding it this way and making numerous other changes I decided I knew what I was looking for. I found the front end, front wheel, and rear rim on ebay. With a phone call to Baz, and a set of SS spokes from TAS classic motorsports, I laced the rear wheel to a stock Honda hub, and mounted the 160-80-16 tire. 

I contacted Tigman about a frame, got him some measurements from my parts, and ordered up a frame. The gas tank, and fenders are from ebay.  The oil tank, chain guard, battery tray, sissy bar, exhaust, and forward controls are home-built, including, the headlight, mini-speedometer, seat, exhaust, and coil mounts. I also added passenger seat and passenger peg mounts just in case the kids wanted a ride. 

All of this, including final assembly was done in my apartment garage with a minimal amount of hand tools, hand grinder, hacksaw, small drill press, and a borrowed 110v mig welder. Once the bike was mocked up and tore down, the frame and accessories went to Neal's Industrial Painting in West Fargo ND for the "Black Chrome" powder coating. Being bikers themselves the folks at Neal's got excited and rushed my parts through, and what was suppose to be a weeks wait , ended up being one day! So, a big THANKS! goes to Neal's!

The tanks, fenders, and chain guard went to my wifes uncle Randy who did the necessary body work and applied the Hot Hues "Blue Mood" paint. The motor remains stock for a '78, I cleaned it up a little and changed out some gaskets to stop the oil from getting out. The carbs are still the '78s also, with a little "Houndog" magic they work quite well for me. 

When it came to wire the bike, I used Jaysco's redrawn simplified wiring diagram, which includes, headlight, taillight, Dyna ignition, 2 marine breakers, and marine ignition switch. To keep it simple I kept the wiring all exposed, but wrapped in heat shrink tubing to make future repairs easier. And because I am not a big fan of the electrical boxes, I tucked my switches and breakers into the empty starter cavity, since it is kick only anyway. With a trick I learned from our very own LRT, I ran my plug wires through the holes in the cylinders from the coils to the spark plugs.  I always liked the look myself! 

My seat is a solo seat with a bicycle shock to soften the ride, covered with a piece of leather which is riveted on. The passenger seat is a steel pan I glued a piece of foam onto and covered in leather. I finished the bike off with a couple nice pieces from a couple fellow members, a BMX style kicker pedal from Naguethey, and a very cool points cover from Lynn at Back Porch Customs.

I bought many of the parts from either ebay, members from, or suppliers like LRT, and TAS. I had much help along the way from members like Houndog750, LRT, Naguethey, Roadkill Savior, Onceanite and others, either by email, PM, or even some phone calls. I also have to thank all the people who have answered some of my many questions along the way, without that I wouldn't have learned what I have about these bikes!

Drew Miller  (dtmmil at

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