PainTTLess By Thunderbike Germany Is 2012 AMD World Champion Of Bike Building

The AMD’s World Championship Of Custom Bike Building is an established and respected showcase of innovative motorcycle design and engineering. The 9th edition held last week in Sturgis may have had less participants than last year but all machines, without exception, featured an incredible level of creativity. And to prevent negative critics, let me first mention that at show registration all bikes are checked for running properly even if the main objective of the organizers is not to reward those bikes on the criteria of being daily riders. The show is about hand-crafted one-of-a-kind custom motorcycles able to inspire other builders and the industry as a whole. Again, the competition is about stunning designs, flawless fabrication and mechanical prowess…

At my first visit – I did quite a few – to the Sturgis AMD huge white tent on Lazelle Street where all competitors were setting up their machines, there was no doubt for me and for most other competitors that the machine presented by Thunderbike Germany was the favorite to claim the title of world Champion Of Custom Bike Building. Inspired by ice lake racers of the 1930’s PainTTless is a long and very slim bike with superb flowing lines, gorgeous one-off parts, a high gloss finish in polished nickel… and no paint. A fabrication and engineering tour-de-force accomplished in only 8 months by Andreas Bergerforth & crew and that nobody is expecting coming from an official Harley-Davidson dealership.

PainTTless is based on a highly modified 1984 Sportster Ironhead engine with Amal carburetor and Harley WLA tranny cradled in a one-off Thunderbike built frame and swingarm. A close look at the numerous steel body fabricated parts and you really wonder how it is possible to make all welds invisible. Spending time reviewing every inch of the bike I was unable to find any defect. A fabrication masterpiece from front to rear, from right to left, from top of the gas tank to the under-frame. Wiring and plumbing of the bike is either invisible or is conceived such a way to not distract but to add beauty. A custom machine that should be preserved for future generations to admire as a top example of design and fabrication excellence.

It was the third participation of Thunderbike Germany to the AMD World Championship (best rank was 2nd place in 2006 in Freestyle Class) Now I wonder what Andreas Bergerforth has in mind for 2013 to top his PainTTless vintage racer. He would not tell me but he knows… A full tech sheet at the end of this article. Thunderbike Germany (photography copyright and courtesy Thunderbike/Dirk “Pixeleye” Behlau for Cyril Huze) 

21 Responses to “PainTTLess By Thunderbike Germany Is 2012 AMD World Champion Of Bike Building”

  1. 1 Branner Aug 13th, 2012 at 7:58 am

    These guys build some of the nicest bikes I’ve seen. Beautiful job TB.

  2. 2 rebel Aug 13th, 2012 at 8:01 am

    WOW, no negatives possible!

  3. 3 Josh Aug 13th, 2012 at 9:12 am

    Too perfect to critic.

  4. 4 Sebastian Aug 13th, 2012 at 10:52 am


  5. 5 Wikked Steel Aug 13th, 2012 at 10:53 am

    That bike is beyond exceptional. Fabulous work and engineering.

  6. 6 Shifter Aug 13th, 2012 at 10:56 am

    Cyril you are right. How you top that?

  7. 7 AFT Customs Aug 13th, 2012 at 11:30 am

    Great job Andreas. It was good to see you again. This is an outstanding piece of craftsmanship & was glad I got to see it in person.

  8. 8 Greeko Aug 13th, 2012 at 11:38 am

    The bike is so good that I don’t know what to say. To be kept in a motorcycle or art museum.

  9. 9 Rodent Aug 13th, 2012 at 1:30 pm

    Tickle your Amal!

  10. 10 laurence zankowski Aug 13th, 2012 at 1:53 pm


    Am i correct in assuming he used two rear cylinder heads? Rotated the front one so that the exhaust will slide between primary and transmission?

    Thats what it looks like to me, which just adds to the mystique of the bike and a testament to Andreas and his crew.

    Be well


  11. 11 nicker Aug 13th, 2012 at 10:04 pm

    Any way you cut it this is one way cool scooter.
    Enough detail to keep any gear head busy looking for hours.
    Thanks for sharing.


  12. 12 Ernie L Aug 14th, 2012 at 5:51 am

    That bike is worth a closer look… I click on the picture and I get a SMALLER version..hmm OK..

  13. 13 clintp22 Aug 14th, 2012 at 7:18 am

    In all hope for the love of humanity and all things with two wheels, GO OUT AND RIDE IT LIKE YOU STOLE IT!!!! That is the only way to properly respect that creation.

  14. 14 Tom Aug 14th, 2012 at 8:35 am

    I see why it won……:-) 🙂
    Fantastic ……

  15. 15 Dale Aug 14th, 2012 at 9:51 am


  16. 16 LC Fab Aug 14th, 2012 at 1:55 pm

    Absolutely the most beautiful motorcycle ive ever seen, this one definately raises the bar!

  17. 17 Martin Twofeather Aug 14th, 2012 at 4:47 pm

    What can I say but great work all possitive…..

  18. 18 CW Aug 15th, 2012 at 12:44 pm

    INSANE! Creative work!, excuse me while i pick up my jaw off the floor. That must be the hardest build off to judge. But Thunderbike deserves this one!

  19. 19 TIm Aug 15th, 2012 at 3:04 pm

    Thanks for sharing this. It’s stunningly beautiful.

  20. 20 Brandon Aug 18th, 2012 at 7:20 pm

    Amazing. I’m not that keen on some color choices, like the windscreen. I would love to see a list of the “what metals were used where” on this one!

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