Are you ready for something REALLY different in a custom Road Star? Check out this AWESOME retro style Roadie by Rick Mathieu who spent over five months putting together this fantastic bike! Rick has gone all out on this beauty with a sprung seat, custom wheels, chain drive conversion, powder coated everything and it just looks too cool! And believe it or not, all this was done in a shed barely larger than the bike itself.
by Rick Mathieu
My local Yamaha dealer knew I was looking for a Roadstar to start another project, and late in October 2004 he came into the coffee shop and told me he had a 2002 that was rear ended. I checked it out, bought it and I knew I wanted to make a “Bobber”.
The first thing I did was to start the plans for getting the wheels done and in November I went out to Long Beach, CA. for the Jesse James No Love Party. While I was out there I went to talk to the people at Wheel Works about making a set of wheels a 21 x 2.15 front and a 16 x 5.5 rear. At the time they said yes we can do that. I get back home and I send out the hubs to Wheel Works, I was told that they couldn’t make me my 16 x 5.5 rear, only 6 inch or more. That was way too wide so I sent them a stock rear. There were some minor set backs with the process, but I’m very pleased with the end product.
The next thing I tackled was making a fork brace for the front, since I wasn’t going to have a fender. To make the radius for the brace I put a front belt pulley in a vice and I bent the flat stock around it, cut them to length and welded them up.
Then came the rear, I cut and ground all the tabs off the swingarm then I mounted it back to the frame. I searched high and low for a cool fender but I couldn’t find what I wanted (while at the same time not wanting to spend too much on one). Then it struck me, I looked at the front stock fender and placed it on the rear tire, it fit! I cut out the mounting brackets and ground down the remaining metal and then I cut off about 4 inches off the bottom. After a test fit it looked perfect for what I wanted so I made some brackets and welded it to the swingarm.
Next was the finish, I planned to powder coat it since that’s one of the things that they do where I work. I stripped all the fenders, tank, etc down to bare metal and powder coated the lot flat black. I also powder coated the swingarm and front end a gloss black to match the frame.
Speaking of the frame I dehorned it and removed the stock seat brackets. The seat I chose was a Corbin-Gentry police style seat which I mounted to the frame via a hinge bracket and seat springs.
I went with a mini ape for the bars, I ran the wires through the bars which isn’t fun, but the clean look was worth it in the end.
May 2005 RoadStarMagazine.com