Auto Express

As seen on TV: An S&S powered panhead by MB Cycles

MB Cycles Custom Panhead S&S
not much reality in reality TV these days. But there are still shows that care more about their original material than hype. German program, Handwerkskunst!is a prime example.

Handwerkskunst! (meaning “craft”) is reserved for craftsmen of many different professions and backgrounds. Each episode focuses on one object, whether it’s a cabinet or a carnival float, and the process of building it from start to finish. No fancy title sequences or even background music—just selective narration and the rustle of the tools and machines used in the process.

MB Cycles Custom Panhead S&S
If you watch the show a month from now, you’ll see how Martin Becker MB cycle Build this shimmering Harley-Davidson pan head. The project itself was commissioned by a friend and regular customer (this is his fifth MB Cycles customization), but it provided the perfect opportunity to explore behind the scenes. Therefore Handwerkskunst! film the entire process—from the raw frame to the final test ride.

As we’ve come to expect from MB Cycles, this panhead is a passionate mix of vintage, re-created and custom parts, all masterfully put together. Like a good chef, Martin knows how to choose the right ingredients—and how to turn them into five-star dishes.

MB Cycles Custom Panhead S&S
Calling it a Harley-Davidson is a bit misleading, because very little here actually comes from The Motor Co., except for the bike’s frame. Martin started with a 1946 HD ‘Wishbone’ unit, then paired it with a Springer user interface copied from W&W Cycles.

The wheels are a mixed kit and both sport drum brakes. A 21-inch Kustom Tech item sits at the front, with an aftermarket part of undisclosed origin at the back. Both are encased in serrated grooves from Firestone.

MB Cycles Custom Panhead S&S
The engine is just as good. It’s a 93 ci panhead motor from S&S Cycle, connected to S&S Super E carburetors and aftermarket exhaust tips with MB Cycles silencers. The ignition system, coils and oil pump are also S&S, while the charging system and regulator are Accel parts.

Other changes include a six-to-four gearbox conversion, FXR clutch cover and BDL Shorty open main belt with Antigravity battery attached ‘to’ it. Martin also converted the panhead to an electric starter; you will find the starter lever hidden under the oil tank.

MB Cycles Custom Panhead S&S
With a foot-operated clutch and manual gearshift lever, the panhead’s cockpit is delightfully sparse. Martin started with a set of his own ‘Snake Low’ handlebars with integrated lift bars, fitted with a single Kustom Tech boom and an internal throttle. A tiny Motogadget speedometer sits just below the bars, with two LED warning lights mounted on the top yoke (bikes have switches, but you have to know where to look).

Rounding out the front end is a single rearview mirror and a small headlight. Both are neatly attached to the spring fork.

MB Cycles Custom Panhead S&S
Further down, you’ll find a custom fuel tank from a Harley-Davidson Sportster. A slim seat sits directly behind it, with a cutout allowing access to the dipstick. Completing the bodywork is a custom oil tank and rear fender from Cooper Smithing Co. which Martin tweaked a bit.

Mounted on the left side of the frame is an MB Cycles license plate holder and a side fender strut that also houses a small taillight from FNA Custom Cycles.

MB Cycles Custom Panhead S&S
These kinds of deceiving details are lurking everywhere on this vintage dream boat. The small brace that secures the back of the fuel tank looks oddly elegant for such a small part. And the fuel cap and foot controller from Prism Supply Co. are decorated with carvings, expertly executed by Carsten Estermann.

The paint job is equally delicate. Made by frequent MB Cycles collaborator, Chiko’s Pinstriping, it features a bold gold-tone metal scale base, accented with silver foil stripes. The Panhead is finished with a powder coat finish by Metal Skin Works, chromed and polished by Polierservice Zwickau.

MB Cycles Custom Panhead S&S
by Martin Handwerkskunst! episode airs on German TV (and on YouTube) on March 24. You can bet we’ll be watching—we’ve been admiring his work from afar for a long time and the opportunity to see his process up close is too good to ignore.

MB cycle | Facebook | Instagram | Image of Photographing the eyes of a horseman

MB Cycles Custom Panhead S&S


News7g: Update the world's latest breaking news online of the day, breaking news, politics, society today, international mainstream news .Updated news 24/7: Entertainment, the World everyday world. Hot news, images, video clips that are updated quickly and reliably

Related Articles

Back to top button