This year Las Vegas Bikefest (Sept 30-Oct 3) was celebrating its 10-year anniversary with about 30,000 bikers traveling to Sin City to enjoy all the biker events. One of the crown jewels of the long weekend of festivities is the “Artistry In Iron Bike Show” where 20 of some of the best custom builders are invited to compete for the title of Las Vegas Champion. Voting is done by show participants and when it was time to count the ballots the clear winner was “Lady Luck”, a very clean and sophisticated green little retro Chop built by Chris Richardson of LA Speed Shop in Alhambra, CA. Chris started his shop 4 years ago, but has already about 15 years of experience customizing cars and bikes for himself and friends. Built in a record time of 6 weeks, details on the bike show that Chris Richardson must have dreamed this custom during a long time and that he knows how to execute detailed fabrication and assembly under time pressure.
Chris started with an old frame that he had traded for some engine cases a while back. Then he found a Springer front end on eBay that he started to chop up, narrowed 3″ and lengthened 5″ with rear legs made out of 1949 Ford rods. He made the oil tank out of an Offenhauser Chevy 409 valve cover and then cut up a Sportster gas tank to his liking (narrowed and tunnelled.) The vintage BSA rear fender was also another great eBay find. A lot of the parts were custom made by Chris.
Engine is a 1947 Knucklehead replica with a Linkert M74 carburetor fitted with a Buck Rogers Bird Catcher air cleaner. Driveline includes a jockey shift RevTech tranny and Primo 1 1/2″ open belt drive. Front wheel is from Excel in size 21″ dressed in Avon Speedmaster (no brake.) Rear wheel is 19″ with star hub wrapped with a Coker tire and using a mechanical brake. Lines are brass custom made at the shop. Chris good friend Casey Johnson from Headcase Kustom Art painted the bike. It’s a metallic Sea Foam Green base coat, with green micro flake paint highlighted with green candy and some gold leaf with lime green pinstriping. LA Speed Shop. (photography courtesy Jack McIntyre)