Tough Motorworks 1 If you're going to name your bike building brand after your hometown, make sure it's a good one. Lewis Reid lives in Tough, Aberdeenshire. And no, I'm not kidding. So here you have Tough Motorworks and their Yamaha 650 Dragstar. Lewis met Andy through their respective kids being students at the local school, Tough Primary. Just gets better doesn't it! Sorry Lewis and Andy, back to the story. Two grown up dudes, pushing back against the mainstream with a shared interest in music. Andy used to be in a punk band and had a lo-fi recording studio den set up in his garden, so the pair got together, laid down some tracks and made CD of their efforts. Polydor or EMI didn't come knocking so Lewis thought he'd repay his new mate with a skills swap and put some work into a tired old Dragstar in the back of Andy's garage. A couple of hours a week of beer fuelled fettling wasn't going to make the deadline of the brief Scottish summer, sometimes known as the week where it rains less and the skies are a very light grey. Lewis decided to take the plunge and rely on his spannering skills full time, using Andy's bike as the guinea pig. Having owned wartime Harleys and Indians Lewis knew the stylistic route he wanted to head down. Tough Motorworks 2 As the mass produced Japanese plastic and cast parts were removed from the donor the vision became clearer and Lewis started to warm to Yamaha's faux-Harley. Dust covered parts on shelves started whispering "fit me, fit me" and before he knew it 3 weeks of all nighters and one 36 hour day had passed. Tough Motorworks 3The two-into-one muffler was mated to the stock exhaust but to give the impression of a fatter pipe, sections of another exhaust have been slid over the original and wrapped. This saved much needed budget and time tinkering with the carb. Tough Motorworks 4 The bars are in fact two pairs welded together, one of which started life as Arlen Ness Ape Hangers, with ally bar end plugs turned by mate Nigel. The step up from 7/8" to 1" meant clutch and brake lever housing's needed reworking, or rasping and filing in this case. Tough Motorworks 5 Wiring is routed through the super-long bars to keep things tidy at the front whilst the electrickery further back hides in a cigar tin, donated by neighbour Irene. Apparently there's a doll's head in there to keep the CDI unit and starter relay away from the Scottish weather. If you think you've built a bike on a budget, think again until you've used your own kid's toys. Tough Motorworks 6 Rattle can paint job and homemade graphics of the owner on the tank, why the heck not. Let's hope Andy feels the same. Tough Motorworks 7 Again, this is the spirit of The Bike Shed through and through. Lewis converted his own shed, persuaded someone to give him a donor bike, abandoned his family (we don't advocate this part), worked night and day with passion and dedication to the dream. Andy was over the moon and loves his 'new' bike, a roaring success. There was a lot more to this story that unfortunately we didn't have time for but drop Lewis an email if you want to hear the rest or have a build in mind. Tough Motorworks is up and running, awaiting your donor. toughmototworks@gmail.com
Share