Choppers Built With Conviction…In Prison.

Keeping inmates busy doing something useful, providing them the skills to successfully re-enter societ and letting them make some money should always be a top priority. Many programs with these objectives already exist in prison and correctional facilities. But until today I didn’t know that such programs could include building chopper motorcycles. At least one correctional facility in our country in Nevada has such a program including metal fabrication, assembly, paint and upholstery. And these choppers are all sold with prison bars authenticated by the Deputy Director! Bighouse Choppers. (thank you Steve Davey)

Zipper's

24 Responses to “Choppers Built With Conviction…In Prison.”


  1. 1 Sid Apr 7th, 2011 at 8:40 am

    It is very good news. It is a good opportunity for prisoners to improve their skills and prove that they can be useful for society. And of course it is great that they can do what they like to do.

  2. 2 zyon Apr 7th, 2011 at 9:05 am

    I understand lowering operational costs for the state but the people that these inmates murdered will never have the chance to build a chopper. Their rape victims get to live with the crime for the rest of their lives while the inmates get to have fun building custom choppers.

    I’m sorry, commit the crime and I feel you should sit in your cell and serve your punishment. No television, MP3 players, musical instruments, shop class or anything else. These “lock up” shows make me sick. Inmates playing basketball all day, televisions in their cells. I’ve seen episodes where they get musical equipment and get to have their own bands. Society wonders why the population in prisons is on the increase. Hell, many of them have it better in prison.

    To me, prison should be the worst, cruelest and most inhumane place to go. Otherwise, those who commit crimes could care less if they go to prison.

  3. 3 zyon Apr 7th, 2011 at 9:06 am

    but then again, i have no problem with the state exterminating rapists, murders and child molesters. The cost of a bullet would surely lower operational costs.

  4. 4 Mike Apr 7th, 2011 at 9:17 am

    they probably won´t open a huge chopper-factory.

    i guess it´s a little bonus for the guys who behave well at jail. If they shall re-enter society, they won´t be murders (…) – and it saves money, so its fine overall.

  5. 5 burnout Apr 7th, 2011 at 9:41 am

    All my life I have wondered about our judicial system (I have never been to jail but I HAVE been screwed by the system). Murder, manslaughter, negligent homicide, assault with intent………………..hard for me to know the difference. HOWEVER if you have done your time and stay “straight” then you are ok with me! I know a man who did 15 for assault with intent. He built ships from matchsticks. During his term, and after, he taught the younger inmates to build. Cool eh? peace

  6. 6 Kirk Perry Apr 7th, 2011 at 11:22 am

    Nice program. You can bet some prison guard/administrator is working overtime for free to keep this program working, especially in a state prison where there is less money.
    The bikes are ok, they keep a few “ranking convicts” focused on tomorrow, but believe me this is NOT a general population activity. The guys that work in this program are going to be the most physically fit to defend themselves. There would be zero, skinny, little guys in this program. Prison is stuck in the little fish, big fish situation. The bike building program is for the minimum security population and basically a “closed shop” for all but a few.
    Oddly enough, when you get settled in the parallel world of prison, drug dealers, bank robbers, and anyone whose crime can’t be traced back to maiming or killing someone, are in a higher echelon than rapist, robbers, and perps (perpetrator). The former are held to esteem and thought of collectively as “regular people”.

    It can go bad for the latter group of inmates, as convicts run the prisons and have daily access to rap sheets. (Note there is a difference between “inmates” and “convicts”. Big, difference in the world of lock-up). Inmates are jitterbugs (throwing spent cadmium batteries at each other after lights out, fighting, trying to make a Billy the Kid name for themselves. Convicts are cool headed. They can and will kill you, but they don’t make as much before doing so.

    Contrary to what you might hear …. no body ever gets “turned-out” in prison (raped). That’s a laughable assertion to anyone whose ever done any time at all, state or federal. Only somebody willing, or weak in the head would ever get buggered, but the public lets the possibility-image continue, as a method to prevent crime, we suppose. But forced fudge-packing is a myth.

    What is heartening is the use and availability of computers in prisons. Not internet, but computer programming, or html writing, and Computer Mentoring programs. Most times convicts with long sentences will herd inmates into computers and away from the “ramps” where the loser’s, and a-holes hang out.

    Getting a job (11 cents an hour, federal, about 40 bucks a month for a 40 hr. week) is hard and next to impossible to obtain. Waiting list a mile long. Most people want to work in prison, because it makes the time go faster. Prison Industries is an overlooked resource.

    You have to balance punishment with the type of person that’s going to be released one day. If you keep someone locked up and not learning, whaddayagonnaget later? A slow-thinking, out of sync, individual that’s not pre-trained to dust off that lunch kit and hard hat, and start over at the bottom and work up.
    However, those CONVICTS that can figure it out, know that because the world turns and gravity is continually present, it produces relativity, and an environment that assures the ex-vict this:
    If you really get out there and TRY to make yourself a better life, there is always, always, always, someone who will help you just the little bit, at exactly the right time, when you need to reach for the next step – but you have to be receptive, which usually means most drugs will cloud your reception. I made it this far as a continual, singular, pot smoker, because I have a work-ethic constitution with weed. Some people do. I have no such constitution with alcohol. One drink is poison for me and my constitution. ME and MY constitution. Not you and yours.
    Know your limitations. And on you way up, please try and work two jobs at once. Get use to this, because this the the fastest way to climb. With a willing employer, you’ll have one foot in one job and one foot in another. You can eventually step out of that boot and into another one, but you have to have two boots to start with. Get it?

  7. 7 Steve Hog Radio producer Apr 7th, 2011 at 3:01 pm

    Wow some heavy thinking going on here.

    I am aware of some great prison ministries that do indeed work – but it is predicated upon one thing and one thing only – A willingness to change! That’s it without that factor no one gets out and stays out.

    As for bike building and any other means of training I am for that. People need a chance to turn around. Yes I do believe in some crimes making the capital offense list as in one bullet to the brain. I also think if a thief has to work to repay those they stole from things would also be different.

    Anyhow thanks for the heads up sounds like a great program that can help a few individuals learn a trade that they can spin into a working life.

  8. 8 Roadside Marty Apr 7th, 2011 at 10:38 pm

    This idea isn’t new (motorcycles in prison)..I remember a few articles from the late 70’s? in Easyriders about a program at WSP at Walla Walla where they were doing the same except I don’t think they sold the bikes they were wrenching on but I could be mistaken..Roadside

  9. 9 David Apr 7th, 2011 at 11:21 pm

    I agree with zyon and I agree with Kirk “Prison Industries is an overlooked Resource”…..Remember “Cool Hand Luke” road crews…remember”Rambo part 2″ Slegde hammers and rocks……That’s where to use the Resource……hard work and boloney sandwiches and maybe a chicken fry once a month!!!! Let them repay their debt and maybe they wont want ot come back!!!

    SSDD; David

  10. 10 David Apr 7th, 2011 at 11:26 pm

    Besies that who the hell paid for the parts for these bikes to be built?Who taught them to put these things together they didn’t hand hammer all this stuff? Where they donated or did the tax payers buy them? If they were sold were did the money go to satisfy the parts cost?

    SSDD; David

  11. 11 Wiz Apr 8th, 2011 at 4:58 am

    I work for the State of South Dakota in thier Prison Meth Program where I get convicts as soon as they get out of prison and are in the half-way houses. I do a year contract with my “clients” and help assimilate them back into societry by assisting in finding them meaningful employment, housing, re-establish relationships with family [if they wish], and counceling with thier “Prison Attitude” wherein if someone looks at them cross-eyed they will literally kill them! They give me the toughest, hardcore sons ‘a bitches with the Swastica’s and “White Power” tattooed on thier chests. But, after runnin’ all my life with 1% outlaws and my associations with the Klan through the years, there ain’t much I’m asskerred of, so we usually get along great! I put them to work around the shop building bikes, sweeping up, shovelin’ snow in the winter ‘an mowin’ my acreage in the summer. They been pumping iron most of thier lives in prison so the’re usually pretty buff, so it’s handy to say, fer instance, “Go grab that Harley engine ‘an put it in that frame” or “Go cut me up ‘an haul in some firewood”. And I get paid by the State all the time I’m with them, Groovy!! Of course, we’re always talkin’ about how to better handle life without violence ‘n drugs, ‘an learnin’ that through the Grace of God life is full of Blessings and we got to learn to appreciate them. I an honored to be able to help make a change for the better in thier lives. I usually have success with most of ’em, but you always have a few that as stated before, “don’t want to change”, so they wind up incarserated again. Some prefer a life behind bars ’cause that way they don’t have to take responsibility for day to day livin’ on the outside. They’re told when to eat, shit, sleep, etc and that’s all they’ve known for the majority of thier lives. But the one’s that make it, makes it all worthwhile. Wiz

  12. 12 zyon Apr 8th, 2011 at 6:02 am

    How are you supposed to warranty this stuff? Shit my regulator went out, let me take it back to this child molester and ask him to fix it for me. Yah, I’ll pass. I’m with David, put them in a chain gang and let them pound rocks and pick up trash on the side of the road.

  13. 13 Mark Apr 8th, 2011 at 10:33 am

    I have done a bit of time. I did a bunch of drugs. I have been out of trouble for 17 years now and have a great, educated wife, a great little boy and a fun life. There is hope for some and not all the folks in prison is AZ are rapists, murderers and such. I am sure that minimum security is where they are building the bikes and I am sure that it is not the violent convicts.

    Jobs such as this inside will help get them jobs when they get out…and most of the bike builders will get out.

    Oh, and pretty nice bikes.

    M

  14. 14 martin Twofeather Apr 8th, 2011 at 12:34 pm

    Great idea.

  15. 15 Robert-viva las vegas Apr 8th, 2011 at 1:16 pm

    This is just another bad example of everybody jumping on the chopper bandwagon building high dollar kit bikes that don’t sell or perform well . With the state of Nevada on the verge of bankrupty maybe a few of these will be selling for the used value of the parts or at auction for pennies on the dollar. Another “Little-Dog” fiasco!

  16. 16 Jeff Nicklus Apr 8th, 2011 at 2:47 pm

    It seems several years ago a motorcycle company in Florida who had developed a 4 valve per head v-twin system, whose name escapes me currently, had hired the Florida Prison system to build their bikes behind the walls for them ….. does anyone else remember this or do I need to increase my medication?

    Over & Out,

    Jeff

  17. 17 just my opinion Apr 8th, 2011 at 11:44 pm

    I am surprised that no one on here seems to know that this program has been going on for years now. Bighouse choppers is not new. Hell I even saw them in magazines three or four years ago . As for inmates building bikes what would some of you rather see them doing? learning a new way to do scams on the internet, maybe learning better ways to not get caught doing the same crimes they are serving time for. If this program does nothing more than show even 1 or 2 of these guys that there is a better way than to rob cheat and kill than I say “Good Job keep it up.”

  18. 18 Johnny Exchange Apr 9th, 2011 at 9:33 am

    Regardless if these Choppers don’t sell, any program that gives inmates a trade to learn and something to do with their hands and minds is a good thing. If you’ve never done time, you absolutely do not understand how little there is to do that is worthwhile. Prisons are a place for punishment, but they also must rehabilitate and get people thinking right. Kudos to nevada for keeping these guys active with something worthwhile.

  19. 19 Grayhawk Apr 9th, 2011 at 10:08 am

    No meds, American Quantum maybe is to whom your referring Jeff

  20. 20 Jeff Nicklus Apr 9th, 2011 at 2:37 pm

    Grayhawk, Exactly correct! Thank you!

    Over & Out,

    Jeff

  21. 21 nuno maroco Apr 10th, 2011 at 10:55 am

    Way to go.Our society have big responsabillities whit this individuals, sometimes we create the exact conditions for crime, “social problems of all kind” also brain funcions are important in our decisions.
    Not defending crime, but i do belive that only understand the problem, we can solve`it.

  22. 22 Bigfoot Apr 10th, 2011 at 12:54 pm

    I think all inmates should work. If they are lifers, have them break rocks or some other job that city workers don’t want. If they are going to be released some day, teach them a skill they can get a job with to help keep them from coming back. All items made in a prison should be sold at a special prison run store manned by prisoners and the money can be used to buy new products for them to work on and the extra money can lower the tax payers cost to keep them jailed. If it is done correctly they might even make enough to give some money back to the state. that money could be used for programs that never have enough money. No prisoner should get a free ride. The two bikes shown look great. The money made from the sale could buy parts to make others and if they could make enough of them the sale of them could buy parts to make others and possibly extra money that could be used to set up another program to make other items that could be sold. Make the prisoners pay for themselfs and cut out the need for any taxpayer money. Why should we have to support them after they went there for robbing or kiling us. Also, if they do nothing but lift weights and sit in a cell all day it dosn’t help them when they get out.

  23. 23 Knucklehead Apr 11th, 2011 at 3:27 pm

    This is a great thing…as long as I’m not paying for it.

  24. 24 spudy121 Jul 19th, 2011 at 2:37 am

    zyon you are one dumb sob

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