Mike's xs650 Bobber
By Anthony van Someren - 31 Oct 12
We first saw Mike McFadden's builds on Do The Ton and just had to see more of his work. This beautifully detailed Bobber is based around a 1980 Yamaha XS650 which came to Mike via a Yamaha district manager with just 8000 miles on the clock and a few issues with the brakes. Mike's goal was to fabricate and finish everything himself in his shop, with basic tools as he's worked with metal and paint for over 20yrs. The sub frame was made from a company he found on the internet with a drop seat design at 5” over on the stretch, but he wasn't thrilled with the final product and ended up getting a friend, Brad Greenwell, to eliminate the drop seat and go with a sleeker look. Mike wanted to have a bike with a “Bonneville Look” and look fast sitting still. He fabricated the tail section and battery tray under the seat to house the wiring harness. Next up was to try and do something different with the exhaust, as he wanted to do something unique and hidden. He also wrapped the headers as the local Hot Rod crew were doing the same, and he liked the look. The chin spoiler was made initially out of stainless steel but weighed just short of a ton so he molded a second one from it out of fiberglass and saved a lot of weight. The wheels are 21” Invaders from Scotty at Invader Wheels and the tires are Pirelli Scorpions. The Copper pieces came from Mr. Lucky’s. The motor was cleaned up and freshened with new carbs from another XS plus some new nuts and bolts and nuts. The bars are made from the original buckhorns with 35mm clip-on clamps. He wanted the bike to have a black & white porcelain look so he sprayed the black and used vanilla shake from PPG on it. The seat was made from an old leather jacket belonging to Mike's wife, which he took back to his garage and cut up. After presenting the bike to the Yamaha representatives during the 2012 Indianapolis MotoGp race they have decided to take it on tour for the Progressive International Motorcycle Show Circuit throughout the United States , so this stunning machine may soon come to a town near you. As the pictures show, this is a stunning piece of work, and while we don't feature too many bobbers or hardtails on here, this was a build we just had to share. Best of all, Mike tells is that the bike is pretty quick and doesn’t ride too badly for a hardtail. Mike also has a few other bikes we intend to feature, so watch this space.