Heavy Breathing by Tommy Summers (A.K.A. lowridertommy)
Tom Rad, a local painter and bike show promoter invited a few of us locals to dig out our old show bikes and bring them to his 2010 show. Not in competition... but just as sort of a flash back to what was done years back. Nothing replated... nothing touched up.. just as they sit today..
Since I spent the time and energy to move everything to drag this out of the corner of the shop... then clean the many years of dust from it.. I thought it fitting to post it here for you to see what was being done in the 80s.. Before I roll it back into that corner for another 20 or so years... I finished this bike the winter of 1983 and started following theshow circuits beginning in January of 84 and winding down in the spring of 86.. This bike has been all over upper midwest as well as shows in Daytona Beach, Houston and Kansas City. Its been to Ontario and Manitoba a few times as well.. In the spring of 86 I parked the bike in the corner of my living room in retirement.
I became married in 1990 and of course the bike had to go the front room of the shop, where it has resided since then.. I painted a bike for a customer that was selected at the Rat's Hole Show in 1992 to be invited to International Motor Show in Essen Germany. He came and told me about it, insisting that if his were invited.. surely they would take mine as well.. So, in March of 1993 I took this bike back to the Rats Hole Show and sure enough.. it was invited to Essen.... Thats the last time, until now, that this bike was shown.. Built 27 years ago.. last shown 17 years ago..
I first started out with a wrecked 76 Honda CB750 K model in 1980. This basic bike was used in 2 show bikes before this one, being totally redesigned and rebuilt after each show season. It started out as a bike called Snatch, then Heavy Breathing , then, redone to its present form, still using the name Heavy Breathing. Theres a ton of mods that are too numerous to list.. much less remember..lolol.. But heres a run down of the basics and some interesting info..
Forks are stock length. Front brakes are Hurst Airheart. Custom triple trees and handlebars with the lower tree drilled, rewelded and tapped to serve as an internal brake line junction. The frame is a heavily modified stock Honda K model (basically just using the motor cradle). There is no down tubes and the frame is tied into the top of the motor for support. Cut down Bay Area Style Sporty tank. Custom machined cam cover that is annodized and engraved. The turbo setup uses a Ray Jay turbo with custom made exhaust and an old Bendix/ HD carb. Rear swing arm in from a 74 Kawasaki KZ 900 and the shocks are SB&F spring struts.
2.75x19 Avon Speedmaster on the front and a 130x18 Michelin M48 on the rear. The rear is a MIchelin because they were the first to come out with a bike tire as large as 130 back in the 80s.. Rims are annodized DID alloy. Front hub is Hallcraft and the rear is 750 Honda. The bike is heavily engraved, top and bottom (oil pan, lower tree and oil filter) and the complete motor is dipped in chrome. The bike was always shown with a chrome and engraved ARD magneto, but I recently sold it as I had no plans of showing this bike again. Currently it has points with the smaller VTX coils in the starter cavity.
This bike has been shown 28 times... well 29 now, I guess...lol.. There are more than 300 gold plated bolts and nuts throughout the bike as well as dozens of other parts too. All of the motor cover bolts have been countersunk into the covers in order to sit flush. There are 200 holes in each of the front rotors. Considering pilot holes and chamfering these holes, thats about 680 pulls on the drill press for each rotor.. 1360 for the pair.. Man, my arm aches thinking about that.. My shops name is engraved a total of 8 times in the rims. All Chrome Plating was done by Pat Obinger of Maple Grove, Minnesota All fab work and machining was done by Ross Noard of Bloomington, Minnesota All engraving was done by Jeremy Potts of Steel Tattoos in Aurora, Colorado. The cam cover was machined from a solid piece of billet aluminum by Greg Boyd of Robbinsdale, Minnesota at the time. The leather seat was made by the late Kieth Nybo of Corcoran, Minnesota (R.I.P.) Gold Leaf and artwork was done by Dave Eckel of Minneapolis, Minnesota
This bike is the
quintessential trailer queen.. It was built for one purpose.. to
sit on a turn table on weekends. Many ask why I would build a bike
with no intention of riding it.. It was mainly done as the others
I've done before it, to advertise my shop as an extreme example of our
capabilities.. It was also done in the spirit of competitiveness..
At that time of my life .. it was a hoot to basically travel the country,
inviting all comers to try to outscore my bike.. The bike does run
and function, although its extremely difficult and uncomfortable to ride..
Many of the shows require the bike to start, move and stop under its own
power.. That can be quite a task considering you don't want to burn
those hand made, chromed and engraved pipes...lol Its like a quick
kick to start.... bump it into gear move about 20 feet and slam on the
brakes as the motor kills ...lol.. thats all they want..