Jimmy Lee and JC Coen are 2 brothers who, after customizing bikes for friends and themselves during 18 years, have made the big jump into the world of Pro Custom Building. And although most would consider that these last years were the less favorable to get started in the industry, their shop Three-Two Choppers in Fort Worth Texas, TX is slowly imposing its own style and gets no problem attracting new clients. Three-Two Choppers? An unexpected name that you will easily remember and whose origin comes from the fact that both the numbers 3 and 2, separately and together, don’t stop showing up in Jimmy and JC lives… Ask them all the stories when you meet in a rally or bike show.
The Coen Brothers are not looking after fads to duplicate what has already been proven as design success. Their ideas are relatively simple, but executed such a way that their bikes end up acquiring their own personalities. This custom called “Rufino II” is a good example of what could have been only another chopper, but in fact incorporates details making it different, noticeable in the street and at the bike show. It was ordered by Miguel Salinas, a customer already owning 2 custom bikes built by the brothers. Inspiration came from extra ideas not incorporated in the former builds.
Seldom do builders get the chance to have full reign on design and finishes for a customer, and this was one of those times. Due to the owner-to-be- small size, the bike had to be relatively compact with no exaggerated wheel base, have a low center of gravity, keep a light weight, be quick to respond when leaning and turning . Giving its unique stance to “Rufino II” is the frame – designed in house and fabricated by Coen’s friends at Dirty South Choppers – with a very small rake of 25-degree combined with a drop seat and set up for a modest size 18 x 4” rear wheel. Power comes from the new 80” Shovelhead engine from S&S Cycles with their Super E carburetor. Front end was built by Jeri at Jeri Springer, holding a 21 x 2.15 wheel and getting its direction from one-off bars (no risers) built at the chop and positioning hands lower than the frame neck.
Gas tank is quite interesting, built from scratch, rubber mounted and installed on a unique three rail system. The brothers used one of their points/ignition covers and mounted it on the left side of the tank for a nice contrast. For fuel delivery to the S&S E carb, they used a Pingel’s remote fuel valve and utilized the shop built motor mount to hang the valve. Under the bottom and to the rear of the tank are two fuel outlets, one on each side of the tunnel. Due to the extreme angle of the tank and the fact that the fuel level lowers parallel to the ground you end up with a pocket of fuel on the opposite side the valve is flowing from. This allows for a nice reserve if and when you run out. ..
Giving character to the bike is the Moon-Eyes oil tank mounted outside the frame and the exhaust pipes running inside it (coated in mirror silver finish by Jet Hot). An original Harley FX 19” front fender went through massaging at the English Wheel and is now used as the rear fender. An Afco 4” coil over spring is bringing suspension to the seat pan upholstered by Duane Ballard after he hand tooled the shop skull logo. A machined in house sweet LED billet taillight adds to the other nice touches on Rufino II. Three Two Choppers (photography copyright Roman Pena at Rap Photo Company courtesy to Cyril Huze)
Build time: 4 months. Ignition: Dyna S Dual Fire. Transmission: Rev Tech 5 in a 4 kick only. Primary: Primo Brute IV with Primo Clutch. Wheels, model Raven Star by Thomason Performance. Tires model Avon Cobra. Hand Controls by Jay Brake. Grips by Avon. Headlight: 4.5” Tribar. Painter: “OSC” Other Side Customs. Graphics: OSC.