Big Bear Choppers Retains 25 Jobs Through Assistance

Big Bear Choppers retained 25 jobs through a Layoff Aversion Program with assistance from the San Bernardino Workforce Investment Board (WIB). The program, issued by the WIB through funds from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, provides technical support for manufacturers aiming to retain their employees through targeted strategies.

Vincent McCoy, Director of the Inland Empire Small Business Development Center and Big Bear Chopper’s regional business consultant, connected the organization with California Manufacturing Technology Consulting® (CMTC), a private, nonprofit corporation which assists Southern California manufacturers to become more competitive.

Big Bear Choppers displayed such a strong potential for growth that Jeff Mathieu, City Manager of Big Bear Lake, joined in the discussions. CMTC additionally made recommendations on how the company could become more lean. The WIB agreed with CMTC’s proposals and provided funding for the recommended projects. CMTC’s consultants helped Big Bear Choppers recognize bottlenecks in the production process discovered through Value Stream Mapping, created action plans to address weaknesses and implemented a review process to ensure sustainability.

Founded in 1998, Big Bear Choppers initially started as a repair center and evolved into a custom motorcycle manufacturer.

Zipper's

92 Responses to “Big Bear Choppers Retains 25 Jobs Through Assistance”


  1. 1 Jason Apr 14th, 2011 at 10:29 am

    What a shame. I wish Kevin the best. I used to be a dealer for their kit bikes and have built several. BBC is a great company to deal with with an outstanding product line. I hope they weather the storm!

  2. 2 Night Train Apr 14th, 2011 at 10:40 am

    Kevin and Mona are real class acts! Not worried one bit about them. They are smart business owners making the best of every opportunity available to them. Big fan of BBC!

  3. 3 chopmonster66 Apr 14th, 2011 at 10:44 am

    wish them all the luck in these hard times Kevin and Mona are great people .the will make it…

  4. 4 James Apr 14th, 2011 at 11:32 am

    More federal dollars (our taxpayer dollars) going to places it doesn’t really need to go, and we have a HUGE spending deficit. Hope Big Bear Choppers the best, but I have a real hard time congratulating someone for getting federal money. The feds give money for roads, sewers, police grants, environment studies, you name it. It all sounds great and fine, but add them all up and the Federal budget is out of control. We need to wean ourselves from the federal pork barrel and cut the size of the federal government by a huge amount.

  5. 5 Jose Apr 14th, 2011 at 11:57 am

    With their type of bikes (so 2000) and in this market, they will not make it. Just using bailout money to last longer for no result. Wishing them the best, but they are they are the next ones to go.

  6. 6 nicker Apr 14th, 2011 at 12:19 pm

    RE:
    “…Big Bear Choppers displayed such a strong potential for growth…”

    That’s cool.
    But given the state of the contemporary “Production Custom” market, they must be looking elsewhere.
    So, what market are they targeting?

    Without a market government help is simply a subsidy.
    The government needs to get out of the way and let this economy get going again.
    And their politics of envy isn’t the solution.
    About the only demand government ever created is for more taxes.

    -nicker-

  7. 7 Patrich Hersch Apr 14th, 2011 at 12:23 pm

    Their business model is obsolete. They have a new one? Very curious to know. If not, it will be slow death like Big Dog.

  8. 8 Mona Alsop Apr 14th, 2011 at 12:31 pm

    I would first like to say thank you Jason, Night Train and Chop Monster for the positive comments, They are few and far beetween on this blog.
    We have been doing the best that we can in this economy and when you are selling a luxury product we are thankful to still be building Big Bear Choppers.Our incredible International and Domestic Dealers have helped continue to build and support our brand and we are are fortunate to have them.
    I want to address the comments by James and Jose in regards to Federal dollars and Bail out money. We unfortunatley did not and have not ever received money from the Government or any other organization . The CMTC has given us incredible advice and they offer training to help move forward. The Workforce Investment Board funds the CMTC and the CMTC advises Businesses.

    We have 60 bikes on order right now , nobody knows what the future holds but we look forward to building Big Bear Choppers for another 12 years.

    Kindest Regards,

    Mona Alsop
    Owner/Vice President Big Bear Choppers

  9. 9 nicker Apr 14th, 2011 at 12:44 pm

    Mona,

    Thanks for the update.
    Will those 60 units be enough to keep the entire crew working or do you-all plan to diversify your production.???

    Best of luck.

    -nicker-

  10. 10 TodT Apr 14th, 2011 at 1:04 pm

    Stay positive, stay focused, keep building bikes.I don’t own a BBC but I’ve always been a fan. Got a big BBC sticker on the rear window of my Dodge……..

  11. 11 Admin Apr 14th, 2011 at 1:14 pm

    “Derick Custom” & “Kyle Nelson” in Temecula, CA. Our computers detected that you comment with fake emails and fake Id’s under different user names. It’s a violation of our terms of service. Your ISP was tracked and your comments moderated. Admin.

  12. 12 Wikked Steel Apr 14th, 2011 at 1:40 pm

    BBC makes the best kit bike out there bare none. I know a number of long term owners that are STILL completely satisfied with their BBC purchase. Bang for the buck in a radical chopper with the joy of building it yourself? Who even comes close?

  13. 13 Jo mama Apr 14th, 2011 at 2:12 pm

    I hate to see any american company having problems, But its no ones job but the owners to bail themselves out. Fashions and styles change in almost every industry and those style of customs have been fading away for a while.I wish them the best and hope they change up things and make it. But like I said it’s the owners job to fix it!

  14. 14 Jus Axin' Apr 14th, 2011 at 2:37 pm

    Mona,

    Who funds the California Workforce Investment Board? I thought that was part of the Dept of Labor. Isn’t that our taxpayer dollars then?

  15. 15 David Apr 14th, 2011 at 2:58 pm

    Kevin and Mona ,

    I wish you all the best ,but as a business you know it’s supply and demand, You have been in business for some time If you dont know by now how to run it maybe you should be in a different business or make the cuts needed to pay for your own “new business model” instead of having the rest of us “taxpayers” from funding such endeavors.
    By the way did you get that Obama healthcare waiver so many others have gotten(hopefully it wont matter and be repealed soon).
    Maybe the world just doesn’t need choppers right now but I due hope for your companies sake you do make a go of it seeing now that we all have a small investment in getting you back on the straight and narrow.

    SSDD; David

  16. 16 Maureen Apr 14th, 2011 at 3:09 pm

    I’m not a customer of BB Choppers, nor do I know them, but I’ve seen what they’ve done for the Big Bear Valley. They build their product in America. Don’t we all want to bring business back to America? If they can retain 25 jobs thru guidance from the WIB, then BRAVO!!!! 25 jobs is huge these days. I’d rather have BB Choppers keeping those jobs, paying social security, medicare, unemployment insurance, collecting sales tax for California and giving people purpose, then I would have 25 people unemployed and collecting unemployment. Any cost associated with the WIB offering guidance is going right back into our system/economy.

  17. 17 john reed Apr 14th, 2011 at 3:36 pm

    They have a good product, and I wish them the best .
    Remember that Kevin is an Australian, and when the sh3t hits the fan they
    can be cheaper than an Englishman, so I think they will take the best use of
    the money, and if anyone is going to make it they will.
    I think.

  18. 18 Doc Robinson Apr 14th, 2011 at 4:40 pm

    Big Bear Choppers are doing well in Australia. Our economy has stayed fairly strong. We avoided the worst of the GFC because our government gave $1000 “bail out” money to every citizen in the country to encourage retail spending, whereas Obama gave it to the greedy banks. And I for one, am over the oft repeated comments that choppers are dead. No way Jose!

  19. 19 golfish Apr 14th, 2011 at 4:55 pm

    Doc hit it…from what I have heard, most of BBC bikes are going on a boat ride. I built at DA kit in 06. I ride the **** out of that bike as much as I can. Its a well built bike with the best of the best parts that I paid so dearly for:)

  20. 20 Donnie Apr 14th, 2011 at 6:20 pm

    BBC is still sort of alive because they export some bikes to Australia, Kevin’s native country. Australia’s economy was these last years one of the strongest with a sharp appreciation of their currency. it means that the US dollar being so low, BBC bikes are relatively still cheap when arriving down under. Mona, I don’t know about your 60 orders, that’s your statement, but how many bikes are ordered for delivery in the US? Also, you’re wrong about your bailout. The Californian taxpayers are being it. So we pay you & Kevin.

  21. 21 chopperfreak29 Apr 14th, 2011 at 8:47 pm

    So help is no longer ok? If you want to address the waste in your country, don’t look at the small manufacturers like Big Bear that do their best to follow the rules and just keep above water. Look to the large multinational corporations bleeding your economy dry paying nothing in taxes and the hugely expensive foreign wars you’re financing right now. Just silly to hear the same bullsh*t fox news talking points on here. It’s getting boring.
    Congrats to Big Bear for managing to make it work for a while longer and I hope this helps them get a leg up.

  22. 22 Tom Chop Apr 14th, 2011 at 9:05 pm

    If Mona & Kevin are able to keep a business afloat in these uncertain times then whatever they can build and sell is a good thing, including choppers, IMHO. Those of you who can`t see the fact of a small bit of assistance is worth keeping an established business up and running; one that`s paying taxes, SSI, SDI, SUI, FICA, not to mention that the employees also pay their share of taxes at the grocery and wherever else their wages are traded for goods and services. As a biker I couldn`t care less if a bank failed but the Fed presented the “banking industry” with billions, yes billions to stimulate the loan industry with the idea that it would free up the purse strings. What happened actually turned out, to no ones suprise, was the “banks” soaked up the money and held on to it. What a big suprise! Put the fox in control of the henhouse and see what happens.The Fed is a bunch of dumbasses for thinking a move like this would stimulate the economy, but they knew exactly what was going to happen; look at who owns these banks. `Nuff said before I get into trouble.
    As for me, I wish the Alsops the best of luck keeping Big Bear Choppers alive and well building choppers. If the chopper craze is over I don`t believe it . It has only slowed, like the economy stupid.

    Tom Chop

  23. 23 Larry Apr 14th, 2011 at 9:05 pm

    If Bush didn’t decide 2 stupid wars, our deficit would be much smaller and our government would be able to help more small businesses like Big Bear Choppers.

  24. 24 golfish Apr 14th, 2011 at 9:05 pm

    29,
    Nobody is helping me and mine. I’m good with BBC but Kevin and Mona live the high life. Maybe they should pony up a bit and stop trying to live the movie star life.

    “You can’t have you cake and eat it too”

  25. 25 Brett Amstrong Apr 14th, 2011 at 9:10 pm

    Hey Republicans reading this blog, if you are against any bailout by the Obama’s administration how come you support Big Bear Choppers being bailed out?

  26. 26 Danzig Apr 14th, 2011 at 9:19 pm

    If you want to know how much this Alsop couple is arrogant, just read what they say in their website at the page “About”. “Today we are inspirational. Tomorrow we will be legendary.” 1- They were inspired by (or copied ideas from) the true custom builders. 2- They are going to become legendary? Really?When?

  27. 27 2monkees Apr 14th, 2011 at 9:29 pm

    You act like they signed up for welfare and food stamps. BBC is hard working people that would give you the shirt off their back. I have a 2008 BBC Venom pro street and you critics can kiss my Republican ass.

  28. 28 Boss Hawg Apr 14th, 2011 at 10:12 pm

    Come on now…don’t you know their attorney is immediate family and how they came about by suing Nastyboy Motorcycles, Paul Yaffee, Iron Horse, Russ Bailey Frames, etc…mostly over the Venom Design? What about the dealers shafted with the 1000 plus frame recall, the amputee, etc…?

    Just ask around to the above, if you do know them…they will tell you. Many in the industry hope they are next to fall flat on the asses.

    Boss Hawg

  29. 29 Boss Hawg Apr 14th, 2011 at 11:46 pm

    Thanks RUB…BLAWGs been dead for a while…I will resurrect once done with my core site for the everyday business.

    Why ya looking for Rick?

    Boss Hawg

  30. 30 Mona Alsop Apr 15th, 2011 at 12:23 am

    Boss Hawg,

    You have lied about us online , that is called Slander. You have listened to gossip from unethical people in this industry , been misinformed and now you have just published your words ( I have a copy) .

    I am inviting you to call me and get your facts straight, and because I will need your information for my attorney.

    You are a self appointed news source in this industry yet you have never once contacted Kevin or myself.

    Opinion is one thing but lying is another and when you are printing lies on this blog it will be addressed by me .

    Mona Alsop
    Owner/ Vice President Big Bear Choppers (909) 878-4340 ext 103

  31. 31 ROCKSTAR Apr 15th, 2011 at 4:09 am

    ON THE DOLE BROTHER

  32. 32 Wiz Apr 15th, 2011 at 4:32 am

    Mona, Got a little pepper in ya, don’t cha! You Go Girl!! Everybody is quibbling about the small change[$] Big Bear got. What about the HUGE White Elephant glaring us in the face, but very few have the balls to address it! As aforementioned the BILLIONS Bush gave the Evil Money-Lenders [Jeasus needs to come Kick-Ass on ’em,like he did in the Temple], and then Obama gives them BILLIONS again! Democrat/Replublican, same bowl of shit lookin’ at itself in the mirror! Insurance companies deciding who lives ‘an who dies, while rippin’ us off BIG TIME! Oil companies quadrupuling [‘an even more than that] profits every quarter [filled up my pick-up yesterday, cost me $80. BUCKS!!]. We are getting REAMED on SOO many fronts you don’t know where your ASS is! “GOD grant me Serenity to ACCEPT the things I CANNOT Change.” It ain’t easy. Wiz

  33. 33 fluke Apr 15th, 2011 at 4:53 am

    @ Mona Alsop, Slander is spoken defamation, libel is written (as in online blogs). Threats of legal action might be better accompanied by at least little legal knowledge of the law.

    if you read Boss Hawg words he alluded to lots of stuff, asked leading questions, added a question mark at the end of the comment about Venom, said “what about so an so?” But other than saying your attorney is immediate family, which if untrue it isn’t defamatory, just inaccurate. The rest is way too vague in nature.

    What does tell, is he made reference to you always suing people and then you threatened the same to him. I have no idea who is right or wrong and don’t care, but your response leads me to now think there may be more substance to what he wrote than I otherwise would have.

    Otherwise, Many people can run a company through the boom years, but there is a special type of skill set needed to survive and thrive through a lean period. Good on Big Bear for working with the CMTC and trying to keep as many staff on as possible.

  34. 34 Charlie @ 2monkees Apr 15th, 2011 at 6:37 am

    You arm chair quarterbacks ought to go back to eatin boogers and collecting welfare. I give Kevin, Mona, and all the folks at BBC a big congrats for hanging in there, riding the storm, and keep building an American made product. Yes I know he is an Aussie, but so is Outback Steakhouse and you probably eat there too. Would you of rather had them close up shop, put the 25 out there to collect unemployment, and welfare cheese until Donald Trump becomes the next president of the United States of America? And by the way… I ride my 2008 Venom prostreet… Mona, these retards are not even worth arguing with. Please go back to what you do best… And that is building custom motorcycles…

  35. 35 fausto Apr 15th, 2011 at 6:54 am

    Thank God there are still people out there that are committed to manufacturing products in their own country rather than outsourcing all of their manufacturing work overseas.

    Domestic manufacturers need all the help they can get.

    Good luck Mona and Kevin.

  36. 36 2Low Apr 15th, 2011 at 7:00 am

    Charlie. You just made me laugh. Outback Steak is not an Aussie Cuisine restaurant chain. The company defines itself in their corporate website as offering American Cuisine!

    “Outback Steakhouse is an American casual dining restaurant chain based in Tampa, Florida with over 1200 locations in 22 countries throughout North and South America, Europe, Asia, and Australia. It was founded in February 1988 in Tampa by Bob Basham, Chris T. Sullivan, Trudy Cooper and Tim Gannon, and is now owned and operated in the United States by OSI Restaurant Partners, and by other franchise and venture agreements internationally. The chain is offering American Cuisine…”

    You are the retard.

  37. 37 Boss Hawg Apr 15th, 2011 at 8:04 am

    Mona,

    Lighten up….get a little poke where it hurts?

    This is Cyril’s blog and I made comments that are easily verified with little research. I will not continue to take Cyril’s space, with your chagrin mannerism, out of respect, yes respect deserves respect and is gladly given too Cyril.

    First off, yes I have spoken with Kevin on several occasions and have firsthand knowledge… that surely you must know as “Owner/ Vice President Big Bear Choppers”…don’t ya?

    You are an easy read. You have sued before. Save face…its easy without legal actions that you are all to quick to threaten…are the services cheap or you just have lots of money to piss away?

    Since your response eludes that you want to air some laundry here for all…..Why not be truthful here to all, Mona?

    I must ask, For the record, are you stating that you never named Nastyboy Motorcycles in a lawsuit?

    Are you stating that you never named Paul Yaffe in a lawsuit?

    Are you stating that you never named Iron Horse Choppers in a lawsuit? A

    Are you stating that you never named other motorcycle builders/manufacturers in a law suit?

    Are you stating Russ Bailey (Lees Summit, MO) never built frames for you nor had issues with you?

    Are you stating you never had frame recalls issued by NHSTA?

    Are you stating you did not have bolts that fell out of the front fender with plaintiff’s leg being amputated? Mathews v. Big Bear American Made Choppers, Inc. ?

    Please Mona….Research your files and disclose the absolute truth with what you really know. Can you do that?

    Boss Hawg

  38. 38 BROADWAYLEE Apr 15th, 2011 at 8:22 am

    GOOD LUCK ON A GOOD PRODUCT IN A SEA OF GARBAGE !!!!!
    JUST THE FACT ITS KEEPING SOME AMERICAN PEOPLE WORKING ALONE SEPERATES THIS FROM SOME OF THE GOVT MONEY SCAMS

  39. 39 Doc Robinson Apr 15th, 2011 at 8:37 am

    Donnie you are quite right when you point out the Aussie dollar is strong against the greenback. But you are wrong when you say “BBC bikes are relatively still cheap when arriving down under”. I can’t quote BBC prices in the US versus Australia at the moment, although that info is readily available with a little bit of research. But right now I can quote Harley-Davidson pricing. A Fat Boy in the US is listed on the US web site for USD $15,999 whereas in Australia its listed price is $32,250 Aussie dollars – even though as I type this the Aussie dollar is today worth 1.05 US dollars! I’m sure that the price ratio between BBC bikes in both countries is similar to Harley’s. So people are not buying BBC bikes because they are cheap, but because they are a very cool and stylish motorcycle.
    Regarding – “Mona, I don’t know about your 60 orders, that’s your statement, but how many bikes are ordered for delivery in the US?” I don’t see the point of this comment. With the shocking imbalance of trade between the US and the rest of the world, every single item that gets exported is a bonus for the US economy, something it sadly and very badly needs.

  40. 40 Jeff Nicklus Apr 15th, 2011 at 9:29 am

    Brett Armstrong,

    I AM A REPUBLICAN AND I DO NOT SUPPORT A BAILOUT FOR ANYONE ….. PERIOD!

    Clear enough for you?

    Over & Out,

    Jeff

  41. 41 zyon Apr 15th, 2011 at 9:36 am

    This is one of the funniest comments sections I’ve read in a long time.

    I started reading and understood that the assistance they receive is basically available to anyone who wants it. Every state has a program that helps small businesses make smarter decisions. Yes, it is federally funded but it has been for many years and it was around before Bush or Obama.

    They did not accept cash dollars to stay in business. They only accepted help in figuring out how to make the best decisions and stay viable in the market place. Look up similar organizations in your area and you will find they exist and can help you if your small business is hurting. it’s not a golden bullet for success but a second pair of eyes and ears to help.

    However, once “leadership” for the business chimed in and only seemed interested in those who blindly back their decisions and then threatened ridiculous legal action against those who oppose, I pretty much figure they will get what they deserve.

    After all, the 50K motorcycles are a thing of the past and what “leadership” failed to disclose to the opposed is a business plan that makes them viable. You could have come on here and said, “these are some of the changes our advisor is helping us make so we can provide the market place with a competitively priced motorcycle.”

  42. 42 Scot Apr 15th, 2011 at 9:41 am

    I think Cole Foster said it best about a week ago…

    “There are plenty of great metal workers and mechanics in the world building ugly shit.”

    Boss Hawg, well said… Dying to hear her response.

  43. 43 Jeff Nicklus Apr 15th, 2011 at 10:44 am

    Larry,

    FYI: Government can do the most to help business by staying the %uck out of our business!

    Over & Out,

    Jeff

  44. 44 bbc fan Apr 15th, 2011 at 11:03 am

    At Boss Hawg, stick a fork in it, and get a life
    A little sore that your a nobody who lives on online blogs are ya??? are ya? you damn hick. no one gives a toot what you’re saying or have to say.
    Big Bear Choppers is still in business. Bottom line. And where, may I ask are you? Obviously not busy enough to have a life outside of the internet.

  45. 45 1550tc Apr 15th, 2011 at 11:25 am

    Mona:

    Its not worth your energy to ague on internet ………good luck to you Kev, keep living the american dream and ride out this brutal shitzami the industry is in and going thru.

    Most guitar players on here will know this company

    Excerpt: “Sweat Equity” From Bob Taylor’s Book

    “I’ve been rich and I’ve been poor, and rich is better.” That makes me laugh whenever I hear it. The struggling years are not something anyone wants to do, but for most people to become successful or to learn to be an expert, there is struggle involved. That’s the part of your story when you work for nothing, when you put out more than you take in, and when you wonder why you’re doing it in the first place.
    The Taylor Guitars story progresses along a path through many seasons, as does any successful company. Companies are conceived, born, nurtured and grown. Some companies live for generations and some don’t, but nearly all have a meager beginning. Ours certainly did, and our beginning seemed to last for years. It’s difficult for me to espouse expert business advice based on our early years since they piled up with very little progress.

    Nobody knew who we were, and we were only one step away from going out of business every day. We weren’t brilliant kids, but we were smart enough, and we didn’t quit. We got smarter as time went on and as we gained experience. There were years of wrestling with the same things day in and day out. We’d make progress on many fronts, but it wasn’t until progress was made on all fronts that the bottom line began to change. All fronts include things like time.
    Recently, we introduced solid body electric guitars into the market. Talking to a dealer we asked, “In your opinion, what does this guitar need in order to be a successful player in the market?” He pondered for a moment and simply answered, “Time.”

    There wasn’t anything we could do about the time factor back then, and we didn’t accept that anyway as being something that needed to happen. We were wrong, of course, but it’s a moot point because we had to stay in business in order for the time to pass that would allow people to know who we were. So we worked—what else could we do?

    The way I look at it is kind of like we were going to school. I knew people who were 19 when they started college, and spent four years only to go to graduate school for another couple years or more. Then they got a job at a company and had to learn the business before they were worth much to the employer. They might have worked at their first job for five years and then started over somewhere else, but all the while becoming a little more able to contribute. Ten or 12 years might pass before they’d feel they were finally getting somewhere. Why should it be different for us?

    Formal education and work experience are part of a normal approach to becoming a useful addition to the workforce; mine was just different. I was working for myself, which I have observed to be the greatest source of working energy I’ve ever witnessed. I’ve seen people leave their job at the day’s end who are totally beat after eight hours. I’ve seen those same people start their own business and work 15-hour days on the energy of owning something themselves. I’m watching my daughters, Natalie and Minet, along with their partner Michael, do it now. I am pretty sure that much of my early story was fueled by energy that came from working for myself, along with my unfettered passion for making guitars, tools, and machines. It also didn’t hurt that our customers, those whom we did find every once in a while, loved their guitars. Letters of praise would arrive in the mail, and I have to tell you, that alone can keep a guy going emotionally.

  46. 46 1550tc Apr 15th, 2011 at 11:29 am

    Nastyboy Motorcycles

    there is a blast from the past……….funniest i ever read on them in their hey days, was how they were going to build 20,000 frames a year LOL just like that they were going to be 3-4x the size of Daytec

  47. 47 The Supreme Team Apr 15th, 2011 at 11:46 am

    Good on you BBC for not being afraid to ask for some help. Times are tough, and yes, poor management and turning a blind shoulder on costs/inventory/trends will put you to into the poor house faster than the OLD owner of Supreme, but at the least, you’re putting the effort out to keep some people employed, and had the sense to ask for some advice, which is not always an easy thing to do when pride gets in the way. I don’t agree with bailouts, because once I was out of my house, I didn’t ask Dad for dollar one, but instead accepted responsibility for my choices, good or bad. However, I have seen that asking for advice can go a long way into revising your business model.

    Having not personally worked with the Alsops I can’t offer my .02 cents, though I was told they were tough to deal with sometimes. I’ve also heard they’re great to deal with when you are a dealer for their product, so I really don’t have an opinion either way, but instead, a small bit of advice:

    Remember the people who support you on the way up, because you’ll see those same people on the way down. Mind YOUR business, don’t mess with others’ business, and you’ll remain in business!

    Good luck to you. Hope the effort pays off.

  48. 48 Jose Pratt Apr 15th, 2011 at 11:56 am

    BBC seems to have an image problem inside the motorcycle industry. Why? Abusing threats, justified or not, of lawsuits?

  49. 49 Lonny Apr 15th, 2011 at 11:57 am

    Cyril’s blog is never boring. News and comments…

  50. 50 Boss Hawg Apr 15th, 2011 at 12:01 pm

    Yawns @ “bbc fan”.

    bbc fan you have to ask…”And where, may I ask are you?” Well I am here with the damn hicks in Hicksville flying the Confederate Cross making money, having a wonderful day, going for a ride to put a breeze between my knees.

    And you?

    Boss Hawg

  51. 51 Tom S. Apr 15th, 2011 at 1:04 pm

    Hope Kevin and Mona the best. Good people who make awesome bikes.

  52. 52 nicker Apr 15th, 2011 at 1:29 pm

    Doc R-

    RE:
    “…oft repeated comments that choppers are dead. ..”

    No, Chops like Rock & Roll will never die.
    But i think the writing is on the wall regarding the “production custom”…. it’s seen it’s peak.

    There’ll always be a market for Unique-one-off stuff.
    But when any one style becomes a trend it inevitable burns itself out of a mass market.

    IMHO anyway.
    -nicker-

    PS
    It’s interesting that the Ausi chop market is going strong.
    I lived in Crunnulla and Cooma between 1949 & 1955 (R&R in Sidney 1969, love the place!), but can’t remember seeing many motorcycles there…???

    -nicker-

  53. 53 Sugar Bear Apr 15th, 2011 at 4:38 pm

    Nicker, ……… Who said, ” choppers are dead” ? How come nobody told me or my clients? Am I out here in a wasteland all by myself???

  54. 54 Rick Fairless Apr 15th, 2011 at 4:56 pm

    Why is it that that people love to see others fail? For the record, I am not a Big Bear dealer nor have I been for over 2 years, yet I have nothing but the highest respect for Kevin & Mona Alsop & Big Bear Choppers. It was not all that long ago that Kevin was a mechanic working in a shed behind a Kawasaki shop. Together with Mona they built a multi-million dollar motorcycle company. Whether you are a fan of them or their style of motorcyles or not, it’s no reason to slam them on a public forum. They are simply hard working people who are living their dreams. They, like me & you, are working harder than they have ever worked for less money. I congratulate them on surviving this stinking economy & I hope we all survive this mess to see better days ahead. Hey, we’re all in this thing together so let’s spread a little peace & love. At least, that’s the way my Ma & Dad raised me!
    RF

  55. 55 Steve Hog Radio producer Apr 15th, 2011 at 5:43 pm

    I’m with Rick in that I am working a lot more for a whole lot less.

    I don’t know anyone at BB but I have met and talked with many “legends” within the custom world and everyone is hurting right now.

    There will always be those with plenty of cash to burn and those who build luxury items will make a living from them. They have always existed. The boom times (mid 90’s – 2005) were made up of many who were living above the means, taking out a second mortgage to buy toys they couldn’t afford. Now that the reality of an over leveraged economy has caught up with us we are seeing the correction taking place: Record sales for used Bikes, boats and over priced hhomes along with bankruptcy for many companies who counted on the masses verses the few to keep their doors open.

    Right-sizing is the buzz word for todays corps both large and small.

    Rick I need to get you on the show, I will get with your PR gal.

  56. 56 nicker Apr 15th, 2011 at 10:50 pm

    Hay Sugar Bear,

    Nothing is ever “Dead” if your into it.
    Hell, i’ve got stuff squirreled away,…… some of it’s older-n me … 🙂

    Hermits like me simply resound yourself with our treasures.
    Remnants of our misspent youth, much of it may not see the light of day till “we’re dead”…. 🙂
    Those few who know what we have have long since stopped trying to pry it out of our fingers.
    We’re not in the industry.
    We hang onto our junk for the sheer joy of having it, popularity or marketability be damned.

    Now a charismatic dude like yourself will always be able to draw people’s interest to the stuff your into. That’s not in dispute. The issues is the revival of the sales figures of the “Production Custom” hay day. Seems to me demographics, more than the economy, stands in the way.

    Checkout the new TV commercial pushing Bombardier’s new three-wheeler. That’s where the boomer money (which isn’t going into hotrod cars ….watch the car auctions) is headed.

    The question is are there enough younger folks with bucks to replicate the Production Custom boom and what scooter styles will motivate em to dig deep into their pockets?

    Good to hear from ya again.
    -nicker-

  57. 57 1550tc Apr 15th, 2011 at 11:53 pm

    Hey Rick

    I hear yah on the….Why is it that that people love to see others fail?

    Its part of the american way in the media……they build em up and then kick em when their down

    its like this song

    “I make my living off the Evening News
    Just give me something-something I can use
    People love it when you lose,
    They love dirty laundry

    Kick ’em when they’re up
    Kick ’em when they’re down
    Kick ’em when they’re stiff
    Kick ’em all around

    Dirty little secrets
    Dirty little lies
    We got our dirty little fingers in everybody’s pie
    We love to cut you down to size
    We love dirty laundry

    We can do “The Innuendo”
    We can dance and sing
    When it’s said and done we haven’t told you a thing
    We all know that Crap is King
    Give us dirty laundry!

  58. 58 Phil Apr 16th, 2011 at 2:03 am

    If Kevin and Mona received Federal Assistance in the way of advice, I believe they would have been extremely Stupid not to take it, free or not. Anyone who belittles them for that is even more stupid. Keep up the fight Kevin and Illegitimi non carborundum.

  59. 59 Doc Robinson Apr 16th, 2011 at 2:11 am

    Nicker, plenty of motorcycles in Australia, the whole gamut from race replicas to old school bobbers but choppers are still going strong, from home built to production bikes like BBC there’s plenty of action. Check out http://www.heavyduty.com.au anytime you have a few minutes if you want to keep up with what is happening down here in the Harley-Davidson/American V-Twin/Chopper/Bobber/Custom scene. Glad you had a good time in Oz. If you come back down, let me know and will hook you up with whatever you need, bikes, babes, the best beer. Like I said, whatever …

  60. 60 R.J. Zee Apr 16th, 2011 at 4:11 pm

    I have spent a couple years looking for the bike I wanted. I was raised by my Gramps to stay American when it comes to buying items, to include vehicles. With that, I searched, visited, and researched different American Builders for a custom bike I would love to ride on. BBC was the company I chose. I am a retired soldier…I spent YEARS fighting the fight from Desert Storm to Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operations Enduring Freedom, and I will ride an American made chopper. I am one of the “60 orders” that Kevin and Mona has on their books…and I live in Washington State.

    I pay my dues and do so without bitching. I know that the money the Federal Government is not used correctly on many accounts, but you will not hear me complain that the money was used to help bail out a company here in the United States. Or that is was used for classes/guidance on how to prevent Americans from losing their jobs.

    I researched the information regarding the individual who was injured because of the front fender…riding has their risks regardless of who does what and who modifies what…that is not what the blog was about and I find it ridiculous that people insist on trying to down someone else. If you don’t like shopping at one store…go somewhere else. If you don’t like eating BK…eat at McD. The choice is there for you.

    With that…I wish Kevin and Mona the best…use the money I spent on a great machine on what ever you want. I will be getting another one next year….you deserve it.

  61. 61 Michael Apr 16th, 2011 at 11:13 pm

    Much respect for Kevin, Mona and everyone at BBC. It takes a fairly dumb bag of dicks to knock them for characterizing the American dream.

  62. 62 nicker Apr 17th, 2011 at 9:30 pm

    Doc R.

    love those pics of the Great Race…. 🙂

    thanks for the link.

    -nicker-

  63. 63 Kevin Alsop Apr 18th, 2011 at 4:21 pm

    Thank you for the postive feed back everyone love and respect

  64. 64 Admin. Apr 18th, 2011 at 7:11 pm

    To RUB. (Hartford CT)

    Our computers detected that you use a fake email to comment in our Blog. This is a violation of our terms of service. http://www.cyrilhuzeblog.com/terms-of-service/

    Consequently, we tracked your ISP and you are now prevented to comment until using your own identity, name & associated email.

  65. 65 mike@meanstreet forks Apr 18th, 2011 at 7:26 pm

    bigbear had the eggs to build a business in america out of passion and the desire to live the american dream. Leave it at that. All those who never got out of the ” box ” should not have a view. Mike:)

  66. 66 Admin. Apr 18th, 2011 at 7:46 pm

    DaTruth. Same as RUB because you are the same person.
    You are now banned from access.
    http://www.cyrilhuzeblog.com/terms-of-service/

  67. 67 road rash Apr 18th, 2011 at 9:43 pm

    It’s the same old story, your head gets bigger than your bank account, you throw lawsuits at the little guys and try to scare them with your big shop and big machinery,
    not so funny now……….

  68. 68 Jeff Nicklus Apr 19th, 2011 at 10:37 am

    As I have stated on many occassions I do not believe in using American Tax Payer dollars to “Bailout” any private business. Now, with that said I will further say, this industry and/or this country does not need even one more American business failing. If this new business profile works for BBC good for them! I wish Kevin, Mona and BBC only the best.

    Over & Out,

    Jeff

  69. 69 Patrick Jansen Apr 19th, 2011 at 1:30 pm

    The one thing I’ve noticed on this blog is that no past BBC employees are on here bashing Kevin and Mona. I don’t know what that says but it is very different than the entries concerning many other production manufacturers. That said, I sold BBC at the dealer level, represented BBC as an employee of BBC, and developed training materials for BBC that clearly demonstrated their products advantages over other brands in the market place. BBC makes a great product with enough different designs to make them amply diverese in terms of price and style. I can tell you that having been around almost every builder in the industry I observed no one who was more hands on in the building process or was more concerned about the customer’s final product than Kevin Alsop. He is passionate about what he does and never took lightly the responsibility he had to the customer.

    Mona and Kevin are hard driven as a couple and capitalists to their core. Nothing that stands in their way stands long whether it be one of their own ideas that isn’t working or an employee that has outlived his (oh that would be me) usefulness. They are quick tempered and are apt to make snap decisions that can dramatically effect a circumstance both in positive and negative ways. My children came from Georgia to visit me and got stuck in California trying to fly on buddy passes. Mona picked up the phone, called a travel agent and got my kids home to Georgia. They allowed me to be in their home, get to know their children and participate in their BBC dream. But just as quickly I was outside the bubble looking in scratching my head wondering what went wrong. They are just as complicated as the rest of us but have lived out their entire maturation in the motorcycle industry pretty much as leaders in the public eye. Its hard to go to school in front of the world when the world is so small and eager to celebrate failure.

    Say what you will but they have survived when most haven’t. This industry is brutal and at times requires hard people to make unpopular and sometimes callous decisions to survive. This is not a popularity contest and for knowing that they often take a hit in the industry. I for one am impressed that they are still around. I am completely shocked that they have opened themselves up to allow someone to come in and help them. That decision is a market of real maturity both professionally and personally. I am grateful, now (was pissed for awhile) for having had the opportunity to be involved with them both personally and professionally. Ironcially I am sitting here on my couch writing this wearing a BBC tshirt.

    Kevin and Mona, good luck, thank you, sorry for the blue mate, ever want to chinwag my number is the same, ignore the furphy and if you’re ever in need give me a call.

  70. 70 alan Apr 19th, 2011 at 6:12 pm

    For myself i’m very happy. I wish kevin is going down

    He used to sue everybody in the industry about a swingam design and this swingarm was made in germany before he patented it. This guy cost me $5000.00 in lawyer fees

    Go to Hell Big Bear Choppers.

    Alan from Santiago Chopper

  71. 71 road rash Apr 19th, 2011 at 7:24 pm

    Big Bear Choppers what can one say about this overnight bike builder guess you ran out of people to sue and yes this is true he sued an innocent bike builder that has been building bikes way before Kevin thought about bikes. The law suit came about when in fact he COPIED the swing arm from a German builder and put a pattern on it, then turned around and sued everyone who had a swing arm that looked like his design that he claims was his when in fact he stole the idea from someone himself. What a piece of work, well what ever your motive was it really sucks to be you, to sue a fellow bike builder just because a swing arm looks like yours, what a looser and a cheap way to make a buck, well what goes around comes around, look at big dog, next ” BIG BEAR” your going down with the rest of the show boaters

  72. 72 Lonny Apr 19th, 2011 at 7:38 pm

    There is a reason why Kevin & Mona Alsop are disliked and rejected by most of the custom motorcycle industry. And it is explained above in several comments . Most know how they did their business. As a matter of fact I don’t think they ever created anything with their designs.

  73. 73 road rash Apr 19th, 2011 at 11:09 pm

    We all being in the biker industry dislike no one, we are all in this trade to make and build bikes that are either off the hook , mild to wild, trend followers, or what ever trips your trigger, but the line between fellow builders working and helping each other, ends when someone like Kevin would sue a fellow builder who’s been building bikes before Kevin was even walking over a swing arm that was built in Germany way before he stole the idea and put a pattern on and then turns around and slaps a law suite on everyone else that has that swing arm, “SORRY” but to me and everyone else who has had the pleasure of dealing with thousands of dollars in court costs and law suits see it in a hole different perspective, I am not implying in any way they didn’t run there business in a professional manor, that is of course if you consider scamming others and suing other builders who are trying to make an honest living and having fun with it all at the same time professional, from the back yard to where he is know took lots of cash flow or LAW SUITS.

  74. 74 nick Apr 20th, 2011 at 8:57 am

    Sorry, happy for the employees that they will still have a pay check. But it was only a matter of time this is a company that had no reason for being.
    Saving them is as they say putting good money after bad.
    Sorry no style, poor quality, screwed how many people.

    Let it go

  75. 75 Scot Apr 20th, 2011 at 10:11 am

    It’s well known within the industry that Big Bear sued several builders over the shape of a swingarm. What’s interesting to me is that OCC built the Trim Spa bike with a swingarm (from Racing Innovations) that is similar to the Venom design. Did Big Bear sue OCC or did they only go after builders that don’t have a fleet of lawyers?

  76. 76 Bilderz Apr 20th, 2011 at 10:26 am

    All custom builders respect each other and mix very well in rallies and events. They support each other. But you will never see the good and talented custom builders mixing with the Alsops. Kevin and Mona should have known that the ones that they met on their way up are the same that they meet now again on their way down. Sorry, no love for BBC.

  77. 77 Boss Hawg Apr 20th, 2011 at 2:21 pm

    Huuummmm Very interesting indeed.

    Mona …seems some of the above fine business associates really do know your inner business workings don’t they? Haven’t seen any answers to my questions posted above either?

    Boss Hawg

  78. 78 Jeff Nicklus Apr 20th, 2011 at 3:50 pm

    Boss,

    So Boss … how do you really feel about the subject?

    Please try and behave yourself!

    Over & Out,

    Jeff

  79. 79 Boss Hawg Apr 20th, 2011 at 6:24 pm

    Hi Jeff…Behave as I always do Brother! C Ya @ TB PCB FBP next week….bringing the goodies with me as discussed…Vroom Vroom Vroom…look out for the black bagger rumbling in…may have to kick some dirt up on Conrad…wink wink…..

    Ha ha ha ha ha and off to the funny farm we go. Now how do I really feel about the subject…Such a good question! Shall we say like Santiago Choppers and others obviously in the know above do but with pure F%$#ing hatred….spent a small tidy sum (much more than I have seen spelled out here) myself with shall we say doe-dicks lawsuits!

    Geez a good one now arises….I think some have called it a Paradox exclusive but I just don;t know anymore with eyes tired and weary…can someone else can tell me please? Is there enough aesthetic design change made…I just don’t know and now ask? But, maybe I ask others here if it looks like a Rebuffini http://www.rebuffini-usa.com/photo.php?Id=56&Img=A …but who the hell knows ? Does anybody really care if does?…not me….Reminds me of my construction days….everyone building cement block and stucco track homes with every fifth one looking like a mirror image of another….but you know, not a damn contractor sued another because one had one that looked like theirs….we all built like hell and made money.

    Ya know some business men handle issues as men…of course they do it friendly and off the cuff & record as real business men do…worst case they agree to disagree and the better one walks with his mouth shut and they both have fun fun fun and make tons of money without another knowing any different!

    Hopefully Cyril will let this play out like Club Chopper did.

    Geez…sure hope I haven’t read the above “gossip from unethical people in this industry” again and “been misinformed” have I? Please tell me if I have ? I’ll apologize.

    If you don’t like me today, you sure as won’t tomorrow.

    Boss Hawg

  80. 80 jatinder pal Apr 21st, 2011 at 1:32 am

    Go international…..there are still markets like China and Indian where people pay premium to buy cars and bikes…..

  81. 81 David S Apr 21st, 2011 at 3:36 pm

    Wow. What a clusterf*^k this comment page has turned into. I’m currently in talks with Mike at BBC to have a bike built. I saw the news on Cyril’s blog and had to read through.

    First, I never take much stock in comment pages – the lunatics tend to come out of the woodwork online. Second, I could care less about the funding they received – about time small business got a piece – I’m a Wall Street lawyer and I see the big banks making billions. Good for BBC for getting a hand. (And before your “lawyer” comments come back, I wasn’t always an attorney – I’ve had a lot of humble, low-paying jobs prior to putting my ass through school).

    So after reading the thrashing that Mona & Kevin have received for the suits they’ve filed – and the personal injury suit filed against them – I did a little research. Big friggin deal. I buy and use Apple products and am a shareholder. They will sue the crap out of you for copyright infringement if you even take a bite out of a Granny Smith, photograph it and use it as your online avatar (not really – but pretty close). As to the PI case in upstate NY, how many of you are driving cars? You think none of them have ever been sued in personal injury matters for product defects? Get a clue.

    What has, however, impressed me in many of these comments are the words of support, the customer satisfaction and the general positive view of BBC as a manufacturer. I’m actually glad I’ve read this comment page (I also find Boss Hawg’s rantings very entertaining). It has solidified my decision to use BBC to build my bike. I look forward to years of riding it and hope BBC sticks around for a long time.

    David S., Esq.

  82. 82 Lightnin'Larry Apr 21st, 2011 at 3:55 pm

    Personally I think the sooner they go out of business the better! I personally found their bikes to be of the lowest quality and their service was worse! How many bikes were they forced to recall? 1152 to be exact! I am really pissed off that they are using my hard earned tax dollars to stay afloat!

  83. 83 Boss Hawg Apr 21st, 2011 at 4:32 pm

    @ David S…Thanks, but not much for rants…do some homework please. I am pleased that you are entertained. Now go blow some money please. Nuff said.

    @ Lightning Larry….please tell us how you really feel.

    All the best.

    Boss Hawg

  84. 84 Boss Hawg Apr 21st, 2011 at 4:33 pm

    @ David S…go over to Club Chopper and see what they know too.

  85. 85 Raymond Apr 21st, 2011 at 5:18 pm

    To David S. Esquire. Are you trading lawyer fees for a BBC bike. I see it as the only reason to get one. Advice: do first a “discovery”

  86. 86 Brett Apr 21st, 2011 at 5:23 pm

    Advice to BBC. Watch out when you sell a bike to a lawyer.

  87. 87 Boss Hawg Apr 21st, 2011 at 5:45 pm

    @ David S.

    Here is a little quoted excerpt of the many on Club Chopper

    tattoo’s Avatar
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    Club Chopper Member
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    “There is no agreement that I can’t tell you guys what happen. I’ll give you guys the short version.
    I bought their 1st Devils Advocate Chopper and some friends of mine also bought bikes from them. Mine and another were built by BBC and the 3rd was bought as a kit.

    When I got mine in Feb 2004 It didn’t run right from day one. I was told by one of the builders at BBC to continue with the break-in period and that they would look at it after that. My break-in came and went and the engine just never would get enough gas. I went to 5 different shops including BBC and no one could get this thing to run right. Mean while the two other guys that bought bikes with me where experiencing the same problems but were able to get thier bikes tuned in properly.

    I never got to that point and when I posted my thoughts about BBC that Vespagirl posted above, Kevin at BBC got upset and accused me of personally telling “him” and his “wife” “fuck you”. It all just went down hill from there. One of my friends then had problems with his clutch and had to pay $700.00 to get fixed which BBC paid him back for. When mine started having the same problems with the clutch I was going to get it fixed but then decided I would try to get my money back. I have another bike so I didn’t need a new one that gave me so much hassle from the start.

    I spoke with Kevin and thats when he started with his “Fuck you” this and “Fuck you” that and “asshole” and this went on and on. I told him we could ettle it ourselves or I would get an Attorney. He said “Fuck you, I’ll deal with the Attorney” and he hung up. The next day someone from BBC called and offered me $25,000.00 for the bike because now it was used and the wheels were personalized. I said “no thanks” and we hung up. My Attorney friend advised me to contact The Attorney Generals office’s citizen/business complaint unit. About a week and a half go by and I get a call from one of BBC builders and he said “We’ll give you all your money back and you give us the bike back” I agreed to that and we made plans for them to bring me my money and they took their bike.”
    __________________
    Tattoo
    IPMC

  88. 88 Bruce Rogers Apr 21st, 2011 at 6:04 pm

    B.B.C. as Bad Building Choppers?

  89. 89 BBC Owner Apr 22nd, 2011 at 1:00 pm

    In order to become completely aware of the company you are commenting on, you may want to look at ClubChopper.com
    Enlightening

  90. 90 Dennis Apr 26th, 2011 at 2:27 pm

    Congratulations Kevin and Mona! We love Big Bear Choppers! Keep up the good work. Ignore all the haters. Congrats!!!!

  91. 91 Mad Jack May 12th, 2011 at 4:37 pm

    Kevin started with nothing and worked his ass off. Big Bear is a hard town to work in.Lots of OLD out to lunch business owners and city managers That is why tourists are staying away. City Council and Robin Hood are destroying this town.People WANT to have fun. Watching Kevin riding his bike down the Blvd Makes me smile! A TRUE American MADE BIKE. GODSPEED KEVIN YOU are the best.YOU WILL SURVIVE BRO! Mad Jack

  92. 92 vasseur philippe May 28th, 2011 at 4:02 am

    Je suis à Paris et je possede un BBC Athena springer, je trouve cette moto fantastique et que ce constructeur merite l’aide que ont lui accorde , pour continuer à fabriquer des motos qui nous font révées ici en europe, rare sont ces hommes et femmes qui donnent leur energie et leur vie à la réalisation de projet telle que celui la, Félicitations à Kevin et Mona Aslop
    Philippe

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