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Old 06-10-2006, 07:28 PM   #1
Tony Bones
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Default If you ever have the chance to see an original Denver's bike...

go out of your way to do it.

I'd heard my machinist has one, but could never seem to mesh our schedules. Today I finally saw the bike when picking up my trans. and Holy cow! I've seen lots of neat show bikes w/ tons of fabrication, lots of chrome, etc., but this thing was something else.

What catches your eye first is obviously the 25 over springer. We're talking 10 and one half feet of bike here folks. But there's so much more. Every tube on the frame was peaked and molded. The tank was custom made and quite unbelievable. It was larger than the Wassels and such people go out of their way for these days and probably held five gallons, but you wouldn't know it due to the perfect proportions. It just blended in so well! Each mount, bracket, and anywhere a bolt went through the frame was molded. The flow was hard to describe. And that springer...beautiful. Simple too.

So this is all sounding super 70's, way over-molded, and in general, just overdone, right? No, not at all. All this work was subtle and perfect. Granted, it was no understated bobber, but it wasn't the overchromed, too much of everything mess you're envisioning. It was...tasteful, but in a waaaay far out way. How is that possible? To be honest, I'm not sure. I've seen 70's show bikes before and was overwhelmed (which is never good). Think early Arlen Ness bikes; neat, but too complicated.

I can only say that the late Denver Mullins and Mondo really were working on a different level. You hear the stories...well, believe them. Artists.

Sorry for the lack of pictures, but I had no idea I'd be seeing it today. Hopefully next time I'm out I can snap a few.

Last edited by Tony Bones; 06-10-2006 at 09:18 PM.
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Old 06-10-2006, 09:20 PM   #2
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Default Re: If you ever have the chance to see an original Denver's bike...

Pix! We need pix!
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Old 06-10-2006, 11:18 PM   #3
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Default Re: If you ever have the chance to see an original Denver's bike...

i got hard readin your story,hope it was a pan
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Old 06-11-2006, 07:38 AM   #4
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Default Re: If you ever have the chance to see an original Denver's bike...

A good friend of mine has an original Denvers Triumph. Unfortunately its been pretty hacked up. He is in the process of restoring it.
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Old 06-11-2006, 03:22 PM   #5
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Default Re: If you ever have the chance to see an original Denver's bike...

I've seen the pics hangin in Mondos old dragboat shop when he was in Havasu, before he went to Henderson. Fuckin cool shit.

I cant say enough about Mondo, he is a great guy. Instead of charging me to do something, he would show and help me do it. I just walked off the street when I met him, and he treated me like family.

If you have a chance to meet him, go for it. You wont be sorry.
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Old 06-11-2006, 05:22 PM   #6
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Default Re: If you ever have the chance to see an original Denver's bike...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tony Bones
I can only say that the late Denver Mullins and Mondo really were working on a different level. You hear the stories...well, believe them. Artists...
What about Freddie!?

G.

Last edited by G Griffin; 06-11-2006 at 05:33 PM.
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Old 06-11-2006, 05:29 PM   #7
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Default Re: If you ever have the chance to see an original Denver's bike...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tony Bones

I can only say that the late Denver Mullins and Mondo really were working on a different level. You hear the stories...well, believe them. Artists.
This story was told to me from Freddie Hernandez, who was Denver's right-hand man from the beginning. In fact, Freddie was building choppers years before Denver.

Mondo had nothing to do with Denver's as far as motorcycles go. He did sell race boat cages (for the cockpits) for Denver's but that was about it.

Mondo never built a single bike while Denver's was in business (while he was still alive). Mondo bought the place after Denver died. Freddie had no interest in buying the place - why would he? Denver was dead.

Denver was also never a "Harley" guy. He main interests with motorcycles were Japanese-powered choppers.

Mondo owned two bikes while Denver's was in business. One of them was built by Freddie.

The bottom line, to me, is that who would you rather believe? Freddie, the man who can build springers, frames and entire bikes with his bare hands or Mondo?
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Old 06-11-2006, 05:32 PM   #8
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Default Re: If you ever have the chance to see an original Denver's bike...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tony Bones
I can only say that the late Denver Mullins and Mondo really were working on a different level. You hear the stories...well, believe them. Artists.
And... Freddie stopped selling his front-ends and frames to Mondo about 3 years ago.
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Old 06-11-2006, 06:48 PM   #9
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Default Re: If you ever have the chance to see an original Denver's bike...

So was there bad blood between the two?
Are any of you West Coast guys going to make the Smoke Out with Chopper Dave?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nelson
And... Freddie stopped selling his front-ends and frames to Mondo about 3 years ago.
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Old 06-11-2006, 08:25 PM   #10
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Default Re: If you ever have the chance to see an original Denver's bike...

fuck mondo.
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Old 06-16-2006, 04:31 PM   #11
Tony Bones
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Default Re: If you ever have the chance to see an original Denver's bike...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nelson
This story was told to me from Freddie Hernandez, who was Denver's right-hand man from the beginning. In fact, Freddie was building choppers years before Denver.

Mondo had nothing to do with Denver's as far as motorcycles go. He did sell race boat cages (for the cockpits) for Denver's but that was about it.

Mondo never built a single bike while Denver's was in business (while he was still alive). Mondo bought the place after Denver died. Freddie had no interest in buying the place - why would he? Denver was dead.

Denver was also never a "Harley" guy. He main interests with motorcycles were Japanese-powered choppers.

Mondo owned two bikes while Denver's was in business. One of them was built by Freddie.

The bottom line, to me, is that who would you rather believe? Freddie, the man who can build springers, frames and entire bikes with his bare hands or Mondo?

I talked on the phone w/ Freddie today about frame stuff & asked him if he remembered that bike. He did.

I've never spoken personally w/ Mondo but thought he did all the molding on the builds. Doesn't matter, I guess.

Regardless of past politics or who did what, see one of these bikes if you can. Pretty amazing work.

Oh, congratulations Nelson.
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Old 06-17-2006, 03:08 AM   #12
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Default Re: If you ever have the chance to see an original Denver's bike...

I was in their shop pretty often in San Berdoo about 25 years ago,I was amazed since even longer about the peak molding, removable molded-in tanks,the chromed mounts on their frames and yes they had mostly Jap powered bikes (and VW powered glass bodied trikes...(?!)
Denver told me back then that they all went to a Lake Havasu trip and "the only bike that broke down was the Panhead"...He was never a Harley guy, you are right...
Molding was done mostly by Mondo and Kim Kohrell at that time... However, they rulled !!! ...About 10 years ago I bought a lot of Denver's build Jap Choppers (and 2 Pans) in the San Bernardino area for $ 4,500-$6,000...
Later (1992-93) I was in F. Hernandez shop and he had all the original frame jigs from Denver's right there !

Last edited by Danny F.; 11-26-2010 at 03:57 PM.
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Old 06-19-2006, 12:44 AM   #13
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Default Re: If you ever have the chance to see an original Denver's bike...

kutty had one denvers own bikes it was lime green kawi gold leafing and shit the bike has repainted some orange color with a big bird on it he re did it and painted it purple/ pearlesnt orange named it phyco thearpy in was in some magazines nelson might have some pics of it. billy
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Old 10-10-2006, 04:08 PM   #14
Danny F.
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Default Re: If you ever have the chance to see an original Denver's bike...

Found an old photoalbum yesterday... Here some pics I snapped from the shop, must have been 1980 or 1981... also Denver's business card... later it changed to "Berdoo Choppers" in a different location on "E" Street...
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Last edited by Danny F.; 10-10-2006 at 05:14 PM.
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Old 10-10-2006, 04:25 PM   #15
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Default Re: If you ever have the chance to see an original Denver's bike...

Denvers is right down the street from me. I've been going over there and getting a few odds and ends taken of on my build. Mondo has always been very nice to me and been patient with all my dumbass questions. That story about Freddy H. is interesting too. Never heard that before.
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Old 10-10-2006, 04:41 PM   #16
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Default Re: If you ever have the chance to see an original Denver's bike...

i just got back to virginia, to my own shop...after workin there 5/6 months.

denver mullins and freddy were/are top notch builders.
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Old 10-13-2006, 05:42 AM   #17
Danny F.
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Default Re: If you ever have the chance to see an original Denver's bike...

Here's Denver and Sonny Martinez building one of their VW trikes...(??) Late Seventy's..
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Old 10-13-2006, 06:45 AM   #18
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Default Re: If you ever have the chance to see an original Denver's bike...

Quote:
Originally Posted by bigassbike
i just got back to virginia, to my own shop...after workin there 5/6 months.

denver mullins and freddy were/are top notch builders.
With your knowledge and history, you're not half bad yourself BA. A whole 5-6 months huh? I'm surprised you put up with it/him/them that long. TK.
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Old 10-13-2006, 08:26 AM   #19
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Default Re: If you ever have the chance to see an original Denver's bike...

I was out in Vegas a little over three years ago and I stopped by to see Mondo. He was working on a bike when I got there but he stopped what he was doing and we shot the breeze for about an hour.






-eddie
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Old 10-13-2006, 10:59 AM   #20
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Default Re: If you ever have the chance to see an original Denver's bike...

Denver Mullens was a hero, Freddie Hernandez is a hero. Hiding in the background, still building the raddest shit ever. Not trying to jump on the godfather of chop bandwagon. In years past he started some of the greatest frame companys building there jigs ect. I used one front end from Mondo on my tribute/psycho therapy bike which was a centerfold bike in the Oct 81 issue of custom chopper. Bike had a Kawi 1000 in it, changed it to sporty. Been using fred's stuff ever since. I am not going to put down Mondo, I don't think I need to. K

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