London International Custom Bike Show
and Pre show gathering at Ace Cafe
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The usual 3rd Thursday night Harley night at the ace café became just a bit more special as this month the pre custom bike show party/preview was being held
So amongst the milling throng of Harley riders, including those from Surrey, Meridian, three Rivers, Chelsea, oxford and places far-flung. We rubbed shoulders with the elite of Europe’s custom bike builders.
Friday 25thand the custom show opened for its preview and it has to be said there was a superb array of custom machinery around, but very few models but for the girls the main attraction seemed to be Russell Mitchell (exile bikes) who could bring them too their knees
A tad expensive at £15 for entry but a very worthwhile show
Favourite of the day, well I have to say it was lamb engineering’s “Café Rouge” a very pretty commando, but the new Custom Chrome bike is also very sweet
Report to follow shortly
Pre Show gathering at the Ace Cafe 24th April
Cardinal Wolesesy at Molesey
where I dropped into on the way back for some Rock 'N' Roll
The London Custom Show
Earls Court Exhibition Centre brings back some great memories for me, from the days of the Royal tournament with the Navy Field Gun races (spectator only I’m not that energetic),and the place for my first major popular music concert, (Supertramps “Famous last words” Tour) to the Bike Shows held there yearly before the move to the NEC.
The area has long been home to the Australian visitors to the capital of this sceptred isle of ours, so it seemed fitting on Anzac day that I was heading once again for Earls court and the London international Custom bike Show.
With many of our continental capitals already hosting a custom bike show it certainly has been a gap in the custom biking scene that needed plugging. Certainly at the pre show party at the nearby Ace Café there were all sorts of languages, and many an accent from around the UK and this was encouraging.
I haven’t as yet visited a European custom show so I was looking forward to good things and our fair city being able to do its best.
Once we had found the entrance to the show, and not the queue for the Dr Who exhibition, though it has to be said Yoda was very tempted to look at Daleks, it has to be said the first impression was of lots and lots of space.
And space was what there were lots of, and plenty of top quality customised motorcycles. Though strangely some of these were a bit crammed in places, we were told that the limit of bikes allowed had been reached for the show. A positive sign I think of the increasing popularity of Custom bikes. It had even attracted the likes of Russell Mitchell across from the states
Although there was a large selection of American V style engined machines having the National Chopper Club there also brought in some interesting machines, including a Springer fronted V Max and some nice Triumphs. British engined bikes were very much evident as well, and the latest from Lamb engineering “Café Rouge” is just a bit more than drop dead gorgeous. The engineering on it is superb, and the onboard vodka carrier a clever idea. It was also great to see Nicks Wildstar (a build which has seemed an eternity) finally on the road and in the flesh. It really is neat. There seems to be a trend for numbering bikes, I did wonder but couldn’t work out if it was a kind of Bike Bingo.
Amongst the exhibiters and stalls it was nice to see emphasis on goods that are required for the build of a custom motorcycle, from engines, to paint and pin striping. My ever growing wish list is getting longer and longer. Sadly my piggy bank is getting emptier and emptier maybe I should have found a game card for the bike bingo.
Tucked away in the back end of beyond and past where we thought anything still was we found the extreme globe riders, a first for me, and I must say it was rather cool, I would be dizzy in seconds, that I know.
Fingers crossed the first warm riding weekend of the year, after the foul weather we have had, did not deter the people visiting over the weekend, for a first show it had a superb array of bikes, but it was just missing that certain atmosphere that we were looking for, it may have been the dark corners and it may have been the lack of music, or the widely spaced layout but it just missed something which no one could pinpoint.
I am really hoping this is the start of something big though, as the quality of bikes was superb. As I plodded back home, so another good memory of Earls Court is lodged in the woolly grey matter.
Roll on London show 2009