The Cancun 240. A Sportster Forty-Eight On A Budget.

If I had a message to deliver to Millennials, it would be that indoor is overrated. In participating in the Harley-Davidson “Battle Of The Kings” custom Sportster competition, all official dealers work for the future of the brand and at of course for themselves, promoting their shops to youngsters  susceptible to access to the sport of motorcycling. In its 3rd edition, the custom competition is growing very fast, for example in the EMEA region (21 countries in Europe, Middle East, Asia) attracting a total of 220 participating dealers! In Germany, this featured entry from Rick’s Motorcycles is one of the 60 custom Sportsters competing for the country crown leading to a grand finale in November at the 2017 edition of Italian Motorcycle Fair, known as EICMA.


This year, Harley’s dealer custom competition has new rules. To create more custom diversity, dealers could choose between 3 Sportster platforms: either an Iron 883, a Roadster or a Forty-Eight. And to place everybody on the same level, a “Millennial” budget of only 6000 euros or about US$6400 for parts and paint. Rick’s Motorcycles dealership owner Patrick “Rick” Knoerzer picked a brand new 2017 Forty-Eight, decided right away to not touch the stock 1202 cc motor and 5-speed tranny, and being one of the few dealers/builders with its own full line of custom parts had to spend a couple of weeks wondering what should be his priority among all the proprietary parts he created.

After Rick decided that the Forty-Eight should have muscle and a fat ass, the project got started from his own designed “Extended Swingarm” featuring stabilizing struts and accepting up to a 240 mm rear tire. An approved TUV part that has enormous success in German land where “drag racing” power and look continue to seduce bikers. As everybody knows in the industry, Rick’s Motorcycles offers some of the most sophisticated and fancy custom wheels in the business, but none of his own sets were compatible with the competition budget. So, for the rear Rick went for what was his first wheel design a couple of decades ago, a simple 16 x 7.5” single disc design with Metzeler 240/50-16 tire/ For the front he kept the 16 x 3.5” stock Forty-Eight wheel but now wrapped with a matching Metzeler 130/90-16 tire. For perfect alignment of the driveline, Rick used his own 29-tooth offset pulley and for strength he used an exclusive Rick/Gates kevlar belt. Again for economy and because they do the job, Harley discs and calipers were preserved.

Front end is just a stock makeover with fork covers and installation of retro looking rubber boots. For bodywork, sheet metal is from Rick’s bolt-on parts catalog: a steel “Bobber” front fender, a steel “240” rear fender and a “revised” peanut gas tank.

The very cool exhaust system is a prototype created for this project that will go in production in a couple of months. For accessories, Rick added his small windscreen, his Good Guys” air cleaner for deep engine breathing, his retro “Dirt Track” bars and a set of his propriatery adjustable control levers. Headlight is genuine Harley. Front turn signals are from P&W, rear turn signals from Italian Rizoma.

Unexplained to me, this Forty-Eight is called Cancun, from the Mexican resort city on the Caribbean sea… Paint job, base coat, airbrush and lettering is by renown artist Marcel Sinnwell from Sinnwell-Design. And if you like this Sportster you can vote for it by going HERERick’s Motorcycles Baden Baden (photography @ Peter Schulz for Cyril Huze)

Zipper's

14 Responses to “The Cancun 240. A Sportster Forty-Eight On A Budget.”


  1. 1 Jack Danbury Feb 13th, 2017 at 9:00 am

    Pretty good for the budget allowed.

  2. 2 Janos Kafka Feb 13th, 2017 at 9:42 am

    Its a ‘ checkbook ‘ custom but never the less . Not half bad .

  3. 3 IAN SOLLEY Feb 13th, 2017 at 10:18 am

    I pity the poor millennial who goes into the dealer and says I will have one of those for the retail price + €6000! You can double that and add Tax at 20% 🏍

  4. 4 Timothy Remus Feb 13th, 2017 at 11:54 am

    Nice Sportster, retains all the things that are cool about Sportsters, while bringing the bike very much into the modern motorcycle world. And without spending 50 grand. Harley’s design staff should take note. Timothy

  5. 5 hacksaws garage Feb 13th, 2017 at 1:57 pm

    dont care for the fat tire or 3.3 tank. the exhaust is sweet!!!!!!!!!!

    i

  6. 6 Micha Huntman Feb 13th, 2017 at 4:36 pm

    This competiton is some sort of a joke. The “limitied budget idea” is actually good but the dealers startet a competition to beat each other with no budget limit. Finaly they the custom bike is not over the budget but it’s already sold and can’t be reproduced…they say! 🙁

  7. 7 highrpm Feb 13th, 2017 at 5:04 pm

    if us oldsters really cared for the millennials, perhaps we’d commit to trying to outlaw the mass practice of selling them into debt slavery just out of high school with hyped advertising that by buying such product they’ll muchly increase their chances of opportunity to succeed. when statistical reality is that x years later with the h1-b’ers making preferrable hirees to the corporates, they’ll be working 3 jobs and 3 failed marriages with 3 child support payments when the bankster send his debt collectors to their doors. as the moto industry is already seeing, the effects of such felonious “buy now, pay later” pay day loan schemes sends waves lots bigger than just those affecting owners of such worthless paper promises losing their own personal properties.

  8. 8 Boss Hawg Feb 14th, 2017 at 8:06 am

    Good looking functional bike.

    Boss Hawg

  9. 9 Blind Man Feb 14th, 2017 at 8:50 am

    Front end means business! Like the burly look!

  10. 10 JohnnySpeed Feb 14th, 2017 at 9:27 am

    Sportsters are aupposed to be skinny. This just looks bloated and fat. Not awesome.

  11. 11 spaz Feb 14th, 2017 at 8:18 pm

    It’s too bad Sportsters don’t come in men’s sizes.

  12. 12 Arthur dj Feb 14th, 2017 at 11:44 pm

    This bike is really cool, I like the naked look. It’s a real real Boyz toy.

  13. 13 Badams Feb 15th, 2017 at 1:27 am

    Seeing an interesting trend with Millennials. Some are urbanites who are nomadic and live in high density housing with no interest in motorcycles; they pack a bag and off to the next city where economic booms happen. The other end is those buying a truck, 26ft trailer and a nimble bike. Those do the same, just rent a nice spot at an RV park and pack and go when the next town has a boom. Housing in major cities has become unaffordable and they are debt savvy after taking the school loan beating for a gig economy job. As much as Boomers and GenX enjoyed a homestead, a lanesplitter, quad cab and livable trailer seems to becoming more realistic to them, so the MoCo MBA types must be reading the tea leaves?

  14. 14 Brian Kennedy Feb 15th, 2017 at 2:50 pm

    Where can i get that tank and header for my bike?

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