Good Custom Bikes Never Get Old.

On top, the famous Gold Yamaha as it was when Custom Builder, and later Custom Chrome Int. Parts Designer, John Reed completed it in 1982. Bottom, the same bike in 2011 competing in Sturgis in the AMD World Championship Of Custom Bike Building. I can tell you that today the bike and the man are as wild as they were in 1982… Almost 30 years later The Gold Yamaha didn’t get one wrinkle. John? Just looking more mature… He kept the bike (most important), but apparently the girl found another custom builder…(wink)

22 Responses to “Good Custom Bikes Never Get Old.”

  1. 1 Blue Aug 23rd, 2011 at 7:31 am

    And John Reed ended up with a lovelier girl anyway. 🙂

  2. 2 Duncan Aug 23rd, 2011 at 8:06 am

    I was fortunate enough to met Mr Reed and see the Gold Yamaha in Sturgis this year. It took me 30 years to see the bike in the metal after first seeing pictures of it when it first appeared and I wan’t disappointed. Oh and Mr Reed is a top bloke, if a touch grumpy. 😉

  3. 3 Randy Aug 23rd, 2011 at 8:23 am

    The Gold Yamaha deserved a top trophy at the AMD Championship.

  4. 4 Rick Fairless Aug 23rd, 2011 at 10:17 am

    Mr. Reed has a fantastic motorcycle mind!
    Much respect Sir.

  5. 5 henry Aug 23rd, 2011 at 10:39 am

    Mr. John Reed or is it Dr. John Reed, you are an artist. Untouchable. I am amazed how you can create a timeless masterpiece. I wish someone would publish a book about you and feature full color photos of all your work.

  6. 6 Mike Ludovico Aug 23rd, 2011 at 10:46 am

    I had the pleasure of spending the afternoon at Mr. Reeds house and seeing the bike prior to it going to Sturgis. The pictures do not do it justice. John is custom motorcycle royalty and his genius was apparent once you enter his shop. Thank you to John and his lovely wife, you guys are the best.
    Mike Ludovico

  7. 7 Kustoms and Choppers Aug 23rd, 2011 at 2:10 pm

    Nice Yamaha

  8. 8 Brenda Fox Aug 23rd, 2011 at 2:15 pm

    You are a “timeless classic”!

    ~ Still as sexy now as you were then, as kooky now as you were then and as fuckin awesome now as you were then … well perhaps more now.

    Thank you for sharing what you do with us with your never forgettable personality, charm and care.
    You truly are a “One – Off” Collectable!

  9. 9 Jeff Decker Aug 23rd, 2011 at 2:37 pm

    John inspires today as much as he ever has. His honestly is brutally refreshing and his passion is undeniable.

  10. 10 sollis Aug 23rd, 2011 at 9:18 pm

    way cool

  11. 11 ray c wheeler Aug 24th, 2011 at 1:08 am

    One of my heros this life time.

  12. 12 Kiwished Aug 24th, 2011 at 1:56 am

    Amazing to think this bike was hand machined in the days before CNC, I still love his Triumphs though. It might be nice to get a few photos on this blog site.

  13. 13 Sportster Mike Aug 24th, 2011 at 1:58 am

    Lovely bike – I remember seeing it here in England years ago – and it still looks fresh

    Whatever happened to the other Yamaha that John Reed built around the same time – the Yamanx?
    (Norton featherbed style frame and a Yamaha twin engine?)
    It was a Bike magazine prize at one point (I think) and used to come through my road a lot in Poole in the 80s
    Is it still out there?

  14. 14 Cochise Aug 24th, 2011 at 6:49 am


  15. 15 Mike Tomas Kiwi Indian MC Co Aug 24th, 2011 at 8:32 am

    Johns parts creativity is on many bikes spanning over many years. His contribution is huge.
    This bike is truly amazing especially when we understand it was built in the days of pre computerized mills and lathes.
    Truly an amazing guy with oodles of accomplishments.

  16. 16 TBW Aug 24th, 2011 at 10:17 am

    I competed at the AMD and scored him 2nd on my score sheet. That bike is amazing for today’s standards. In 1982 it must have been mind blowing. I wish I had the opportunity to meet him. He is defiantly an industry Icon.

  17. 17 THUG CUSTOM CYCLES Aug 25th, 2011 at 9:29 am

    old school rules!!

  18. 18 ger Aug 28th, 2011 at 5:37 am

    was delighted to finally see this for real in sturgis.
    i only ever saw it in magazines
    i had only just bought my first bike when this was built
    met john in sturgis..and he’s not at all grumpy.
    at least not that day anyway 🙂

  19. 19 GRIP ACE - HIDDEN MOTORCYCLE SWITCH SYSTEM Aug 29th, 2011 at 9:03 am

    Great hands on detail!!!

  20. 20 Blue Aug 30th, 2011 at 11:47 am

    @ Henry ‘ [quote] I wish someone would publish a book about you and feature full color photos of all your work.

    🙂 What about it, John? 😉

  21. 21 Chris Saddler Sam (SakeRacer) Sep 11th, 2011 at 11:58 am

    my compliments mr reed!

    probably the best looking bike on the show this year!
    so classy!


  22. 22 Kazimir Majorinc Oct 24th, 2011 at 11:35 pm

    No, no really. Engine looks too sophisticated compared to rest of the bike.

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Cyril Huze