This bike is called “Solitary Confinement” and has a lot of people up in arms, as if somebody ought to be jailed for building it.
You may have seen and/or read about it in the past week. As you can imagine, the “bulls**t show bike” crowd has their opinion, and friends of Mark love it because you back your buddy. To some it’s “unrideable/impractical art,” and others believe it’s “visionary.”
I don’t think it’s either but it is beautiful and I doubt it was made for anything but scooting around for five miles to the bar or a bash and five miles back home. It’s been written by his friends that the bike wasn’t meant to sit, but to be ridden.
The biggest b**ches are about the bars and the tank. What is more absurd, that I have a chopper I’ll probably never ride more than 30 miles in a day that has over four gallons of fuel capacity, or this tiniest of peanut tanks that would suit a guy just fine for bopping around his neighborhood?
Think about it. How often do you go somewhere that’s 20 miles away? Rarely. How often do you make quick one to five-mile trips to the store, the pub, or your favorite cafe or diner? Almost always. This bike is perfect and a lean representation of what a bobber/chopper should be; no extra sh*t, built for what it’s supposed to do, simple and clean.
Here’s the realization I’ve recently come to, take it for what it’s worth to you; to each his own.
I don’t care if you build bikes for a living, or merely judge them online. I don’t care if you prefer Honda or Harley. I don’t care if you ride an extended-swingarm ‘Busa or a CB750 cafe. I’ve met cool people who ride all kinds of bikes, and dicks who ride the same.
My personal preference is black and no chrome, but that doesn’t mean somebody else shouldn’t dip their frame in nickel and buff it until it blinds ***.
I like ratty elements to my bikes and I like them to cost about five grand when they’re complete, but that doesn’t mean another shouldn’t spend one or two thousand hours on something and make it worth 50 or 100 grand.
This ride has what seem to be impossibly narrow handlebars, a Lucite primary cover and a Lucite motor mount. Whether a Lucite mount is strong enough will be discovered later. It takes ***** to give that a shot and I credit Mr. Drews for trying it out.
It’s got no front brakes and a slick little drum brake inside the rear sprocket and you know what, it’s f**king cool; a definitive death machine.
From the photos I’ve seen, it seems there was a lot of detail put into this bike and I appreciate that. It’s an incredibly clean looking ride and from what I’ve discovered, is an homage to a bike built in the late 1960’s:
The historical significance is not to be ignored. Even the most ignorant can see numerous similarities here at only a moment’s glance.
Have you ever seen a bike in an old mag and wanted to build one like it? Maybe that is what Mark Drews did. There’s nothing like living the dream. Congratulations, man. Good luck in Yokohama.
Get the best of bikerMetric directly in your inbox, once a week, every week.