Sometimes life hands us lemons, and we're told to make lemonade. But sometimes we give that old adage a big middle finger and turn those lemons into something a little better than lemonade... like a sweet little Honda chop.
Josh Stroder had hit a rough patch in his life, and he decided that he needed a distraction from all of the junk going on. A close friend, who had just gotten into motorcycles, came to him and urged him to give it a try as well. Thankfully, he took that advice. Wanting more than just some cookie-cutter bike, he took to tracking down a project, something to get his hands dirty and make his own.
In his own words: "I've been an artist and in graphics for years, at this point I was only approaching the bike as an art project. I literally only was thinking aesthetics. How it ran or anything beyond that never crossed my mind. I was strictly on a budget, because I had just been let go, so I had to find something relatively cheap. Getting it running later would be fine. So I found an old 1985 Honda Shadow TV500c on Craigslist for $800. It ran, but not well. It had a bit of a chug in it… Oh, have I mentioned that at this point I'd never been on a motorcycle? Anyway, I got it off the guy for $600 and took it home."
Josh handled most of the work himself, with a little help here and there from friends. And not so much help from a misinformed shop the he had trusted to work out some ignition issues. We've all been through that rigmarole.
Once Josh completed all of the paint and other upgrades, his bike spent six months back and forth in the shop to work out his electrical issues. After a lot of hassle from a less than honest mechanic, and numerous suspiciously "bad" parts, he had the bike on the road once and for all and hasn't looked back.
Long story short, he came out on top, with a bike he can call his own, therapy of the two-wheeled kind. Josh gets it. He didn't have any outside inspiration from the "scene" or someone telling him what's "cool" or "uncool". He built a bike for himself, and not to impress anyone. All that mattered was that he made it his own, and that he could ride it. When life gets crazy, he can hop on and just get lost.
Josh also runs an online apparel store, check out his stuff here: Scoundrel